$60 Games Just Aren’t Worth It

I don’t remember when exactly games started costing $60 a pop. Regardless, the change to a $60 price tag was a very dark day for the gaming community.. Back when I owned a GameCube I was getting new games at $50, if not $40 for unused recent releases. The rising price is due to a number of reasons, but what’s important is that if games continue to cost sixty bucks (or raise in price) I’m going to find myself playing less and less titles.

Personally I can’t play a single game for too long. Sure, I have my favorite games that I’ve logged hundreds, if not thousands of hours on. But for the average game I’m lucky to be getting more than 10 or 15 hours in before the game gets dull.

Take Dragon’s Dogma for instance. I bought the game for $50 used, but it would have been $60 new. I played it for about 10 hours in the first two weeks, and already have found myself keeping the game on my shelf instead of in the Xbox. Sure, I’ll probably log another 5 hours on it once I get around to playing games that I have more interest in, but at the end of the day that’s only 15 hours for a $60 game. It’s a fun game, but not fun enough for me to play until the end.

$60 divided by the 15 hours I played turns into $4 an hour. When I look at it like that it’s a little depressing. There are a lot of things that cost less than $4 an hour that will make me have just as much fun.

What does this mean? It means that I’m playing less and less new release games. Unless it’s a game that I know I’m going to enjoy, then I’m not going to the store and buying it. I picked Skyrim up on release day because I logged so many hours in Oblivion. I pre ordered Guild Wars 2 because I played way too much of the original Guild Wars. And I’ll probably get Halo 4 because I know it’s going to be worthwhile.

But these are all sequels to games I’ve already played a lot. At $60 a game I’m too hesitant to try new series and games that don’t have prequels. It’s just too risky of an endeavor with my student budget. And that’s sad. I’m a less curious and adventurous gamer because the price is just too high.

We also have to take into consideration the price’s of our consoles and accessories. You’re not just paying $60 for a new game, you’re also paying a couple hundred dollars for an Xbox 360 or PS3. If you want to play with friends you’re going to have to spend over another hundred dollars just to get enough controllers. Video gaming is quickly changing from a cheap hobby to a very expensive way to spend your free time.

Instead of buying new AAA titles I’ve been buying indie games. Games on Steam and Xbox Live Arcade cost $5 to $30 dollars new. And the fact is, I’ll probably play them just us much as the blockbuster releases. I bought Fez around the same time as Dragon’s Dogma for $20 on Xbox Live’s Arcade. I ended up logging around 10 hours so far. $20 for 10 hours of enjoyment has already cut in half the entertainment value per hour.

When it comes down to it, $60 games just aren’t worth it to me. I’ll wait for the majority of games until I can get a used copy for half price. Until the gaming industry gets off their high horses and lowers the price for new games I just don’t see me getting new, unknown titles. The industry won’t lower the prices, and I won’t buy their new games. Let’s just hope we don’t see games going for $75 when the next gen comes out. I don’t know what I’ll do then.