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runswithspatulas

what's with all the gaming service charges now?

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i remember back when i had my ps2 and all the game consoles i've had since then. there was never any online service to pay for. you just got on the internet...found your friends or whatever and played. now they make you pay for services in order to play with others and i'm assuming in general. it's bad enough the games are $60 a pop or maybe more?? i sometimes feel like they're just looking for ways to stick it to our wallets. i don't care for that much. you pay for internet...the console...the games and then that service, plus any in-game stuff you want. it's discouraging sometimes. it's getting more and more difficult to find sources of entertainment that don't cost a fortune. what are your opinions on this?

Edited by runswithspatulas
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I'll begin my post by saying I've not seen you on the forums before, so 1) Hello! And 2) I love the name. Moving on.

1 hour ago, runswithspatulas said:

i remember back when i had my ps2 and all the game consoles i've had since then. there was never any online service to pay for. you just got on the internet...found your friends or whatever and played.

This isn't quite true. For the Sony Playstation 2 (and later PS3) and the Nintendo GameCube internet functionality was free, but limited. The Microsoft Xbox had Xbox Live, a monthly subscription service. Then there's subscription-based games such as Final Fantasy XI... on the Playstation 2.

Even before that there was the SEGA Channel and other online services with the DreamCast. Both SEGA and Microsoft put more emphasis on their online components than their contemporaries, which would've meant being able to justify it with prices. Microsoft especially found that the money was just there on the table, and successfully began a worrying precedent for the rest of the industry.

1 hour ago, runswithspatulas said:

now they make you pay for services in order to play with others and i'm assuming in general. it's bad enough the games are $60 a pop or maybe more??

I'm getting hung up on the word 'now'. Xbox Live began 2001 and has been around (mostly consistently) since. Playstation Plus began in 2010. Most recently Nintendo began charging a subscription fee for their online components in 2018, but I'm not fully familiar with the extent of it.

As for the prices, they're only going to rise. We're already seeing across the board $70 price tags with additional monetisation. I know why this is: despite the larger amount of people playing games (even before Covid, video gaming had a collossal share of the entertainment market), profit maximisation is still a priority. If/when the gaming boom from covid dies down I suspect a lot of CEOs - or worse, the grunts at the bottom of the totem pole - will lose their jobs as profit expectations are piss poorly managed.

1 hour ago, runswithspatulas said:

i sometimes feel like they're just looking for ways to stick it to our wallets.

Correctamundo.

1 hour ago, runswithspatulas said:

it's getting more and more difficult to find sources of entertainment that don't cost a fortune.

Agreed. There's no realistic way people can afford all of these things. Netflix and co. did the same thing to themselves: carving out digital feifdoms like the pay-per-view channels of old, meanwhile others just pirate things for equal quality and zero money. We're seeing the same thing happening in gaming also: we have Xbox, Playstation and Nintendo, as well as publishers with their subscriptions like EA and Ubisoft. I just don't see how it's sustainable.

And yet at the same time... it's pretty cheap if you commit to one system. You pay for a system, get Game Pass or whatever follow-the-leader subscription service you go for, and you can get hundreds of ours out of a ton of games versus just one for a fraction of the price. If you don't care for the future of digital ownership (what little we've ever had), gaming is pretty cheap. Even the tabletop is following suit with services like D&D Beyond or HeroForge, and honestly, I'm all for it.

I feel like gaming is as cheap as you make it. There's always older systems and games for 'patientgaming' and there's subscription services that are still cheaper than buying a game and all its parts afterwards. I don't like the amount of subscription management, but thankfully it remains an option. For how long we'll have to see.

Edited by Withywarlock
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As a videogame collector I'm not a fan of those digital subscription services, because imo gamepass and what have you is just a glorified rental service where they add games and delete games as they please. I'm not going to slam any of these services as clearly i'm in the minority who thinks this way and if it works why not aslong doesen't come at the cost of a physical copy being avaible i don't mind it too much.

Also gaming is not that much more expensive then in ps2/xbox/gamecube days, new releases also came at a 60$ costs. Wheter or not you were getting more bang for your buck then vs now i'll leave that in between, because oppinions on this are all over the place here. Games go on sale all the time and you can get really good bargains if you don't mind waiting half a year till a year after it's release especially during black friday and the holiday period you can probably buy an entire years worth of games for next to nothing. But obviously i'm getting off topic. 

A lot of people should take note of what they are subscribed to and how much they spend monthly on subscriptions itself because you'd be surprised how much it adds all up on a monthly basis. 10 bucks here, 15 buck there easy enough but do you need all those subscriptions. Like i've seen people complain about subscriptions and how expensive it gets but do you really need xbox live and ps plus for both consoles, same with amazon prime and netflix, do you really need them both there are only 24 hours in day you can't possible watch everithing. How about that expensive Gym subscription you never use.

I think this is a major problem with the current state of entertaiment, everithing is more and more subscription based and the urgency for some people that they want to have a subscription to everithing that interests them, offcourse it's going to be expensive month after month. A lot of people would be saving a lot of money each month if they start calculating what they pay for subscription every month and maybe toss everithing out that they don't get their value out off.

To put it short as i can't phrase it better then @Withywarlock you can make gaming as expensive or cheap as possible as you want. If you ask my oppinion on the whole matter go physical and just get the games you're really interested or hunt down bargains here and there, also if you don't mind used games you can also save a lot of money. 

Not really sure this is the answer you are looking for, but i feel like i tried my best.

Edited by Yaramaki
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1 minute ago, Yaramaki said:

To put it short as i can't phrase it better then @Withywarlock you can make gaming as expensive or cheap as possible as you want. If you ask my oppion on the whole matter go physical and just get the games you're really interested or hunt down bargains here and there, also if you don't mind used games you can also save a lot of money

From what I read in this particular thread, this part of your comment actually sums it all up.

Games could become as expensive or as cheap as you want to be in most cases with only a few exceptions.

On a More personal level, when a video game which I am really interested in is out but I can't afford it I just give it some time and focus more on other games which I have within reach and in a few months you could get that game at less the original price with a good bargain or an already used copy.

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i appreciate the answers. i've never seen any online charges with ps2 before so that's news to me. never had an xbox either. i will probably stick with nintendo products as they are more affordable even the online services but now they've added another way to drag money from ppl. first there was just the online service. one person can pay $20 a year. family is like $39. now they added this new online plus thing for $50. generally there's options to do something cheaper and they offer free games. i'm rarely interested in the new games they put out because they're not ones i care for. but, i still have quite a few games to play despite that. i hadn't really done a lot of gaming for quite a while. i was just mainly playing sims on my wii. i feel like if we have to have subscriptions then we shouldn't have to be paying for in game content. but that's just my opinion. ☺️

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1 hour ago, runswithspatulas said:

i will probably stick with nintendo products as they are more affordable even the online services but now they've added another way to drag money from ppl.

I will say in their defence that their pricing is pretty decent: £3.49 per month is not at all bad and the different tiers of subscription help save even further. The 7-day trial isn't that great though, but on the flipside they did have free online play for a year or two before they started charging.

They've also got monetisation on mobile but their games are for the most part fair and well-liked. Mario Kart Tour is easily one of my favourite installments to the franchise and lends itself well to the update model that I criticise other games for.

1 hour ago, runswithspatulas said:

i feel like if we have to have subscriptions then we shouldn't have to be paying for in game content. but that's just my opinion.

As subscription models are becoming more prominent we are finding that they're getting better for this (read: competitive). Paradox Interactive, famed for their DLC model over sequels, have subscription services for their games which their players easily treat as their one game. Game Pass et al - to my knowledge - include additional content in premium tiers, which I imagine will change into one single no-nonsense fee if they prove unpopular enough. Doubtful, but possible as I've said numerous times this week.

Stick with the Sims on Wii, you're not missing much in today's industry. Besides all the expansions that the Sims is infamous for chopping out and re-selling in future installments.

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Times change. Back in the day for those older consoles, online features were limited. And like others have said, Xbox live was a thing for the Xbox and Gamecube had some online functions. Hell, some consoles before it had the ability to go online with certain connections. But these days, with the internet so popular and in pretty much everyones homes, it makes sense that some services would charge for their online modes/options. I think we're starting to see stuff like Xbox become more lax, as I think they're going to cut out Xbox live soon to allow everyone to game. But that's where gamepass comes in, as I think it'll outright replace xbox live. 

And of course, some games have their own subscription options. I just simply skip the games that require you to pay monthly, or I skip games that are mostly played online. 

Blame all of this on the internet, as studios wouldn't have been able to do it without the internet. 

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i wanted sims 4 but then i found out it was for pc and i can't afford a good pc or the games so no go on that. sims on nintendo consoles like 3ds suck something awful. but i imagine the switch will be my go to. i wanna get the oled at some point.

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Gamepass? I like it purely to discover games. I'm far more likely to purchase a game when I get to see all of the meat and potatoes. I don't have the schedule to finish anything on it within a month though.

It also really helps when games like Microsoft flight simulator is on it. These are wonderful games to binge on once a while.

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On 7/20/2022 at 7:31 PM, Kane99 said:

And of course, some games have their own subscription options. I just simply skip the games that require you to pay monthly, or I skip games that are mostly played online. 

Such kind of games are just traps to get you hooked and keep paying whether the game is still worth playing or not. I'm very careful about buying into such subscriptions because it's not worth it. 

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Things have changed a lot since the late 90's/early 00's - Profit takes priority over providing a quality experience to us gamers. As @Withywarlock pointed out correctly, Xbox Live has been around since the 2000's and because of its success, a lot of other companies jumped on the bandwagon. Between a lot of the MMORPG's of the 2010's, the aggressive microtransaction systems in Deadspace 3, Bethesda charging for the horse DLC armor in Oblivion, and Microsoft - we gamers now find ourselves for every single thing in the game and any additional content. It's a shock for most older gamers who skipped a few generations and try to get into modern gaming - the only reason it's not as big of a shock to me is that I've been involved in all eras of gaming since the early 90's.

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On 7/22/2022 at 11:56 AM, Empire said:

Gamepass? I like it purely to discover games. I'm far more likely to purchase a game when I get to see all of the meat and potatoes. I don't have the schedule to finish anything on it within a month though.

It also really helps when games like Microsoft flight simulator is on it. These are wonderful games to binge on once a while.

I can't say that I don't like Gamepass because if I did, them I'm not being very honest. Even Sony had to see how good Gamepass have been which was why they had do work well on their PS NOW subscription. 

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As someone who works as a server admin, this stuff isn’t cheap to run.

I know you mentioned the price of games being $60, and the new consoles have jumped up to $70. It does suck if you want to play them day one, but like people mentioned earlier, you can wait for them to be on sale.

With older game consoles, the price of the games are more expensive if you consider inflation, and others were more expensive without inflation (and worse if you include inflation). The cartridge based home consoles didn’t really have a standardized price, and was dictated by what extra chips they had. $80 games were not that unusual back then.

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2 hours ago, Grungie said:

As someone who works as a server admin, this stuff isn’t cheap to run.

I know you mentioned the price of games being $60, and the new consoles have jumped up to $70. It does suck if you want to play them day one, but like people mentioned earlier, you can wait for them to be on sale.

With older game consoles, the price of the games are more expensive if you consider inflation, and others were more expensive without inflation (and worse if you include inflation). The cartridge based home consoles didn’t really have a standardized price, and was dictated by what extra chips they had. $80 games were not that unusual back then.

There's no doubt that inflation played a very big role in how everything is quite expensive right now and in this case, it's not different at all. With the way things are still going, I'm not sure if it's ever going to get back lower in terms of cost. 

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3 hours ago, Heatman said:

There's no doubt that inflation played a very big role in how everything is quite expensive right now and in this case, it's not different at all. With the way things are still going, I'm not sure if it's ever going to get back lower in terms of cost. 

I wasn’t really referring to the current inflation, just more of general inflation since the early 90’s. $70 in 1992 is different from $70 in 2022.

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