Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Pachter: Premium Online To Be Included in Future AAA Titles

Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter is at it again, stating that he expects bigger publishers to institute a premium online plan in future top-tier titles. Though light on specifics, Pachter states that if 15 million people were to be sliced in half and stay free, the other half would spend $5 a month, causing a revenue increase of $450m USD, with those not spending money for online play filling that time buying new games, presumably for $60. As for who would do this:
"We think that scheduled releases like Call of Duty Black Ops, Medal of Honor and Halo Reach, and unscheduled releases like Grand Theft Auto 5 all will contain the opportunity for gamers to pay more to the publishers."
Mr. Pachter seems to have a very bullish take on videogame consumers. For one, any pay-to-play plan would be in addition to other premium fees, such as the cost of Xbox Live Gold. Secondly, what Mr. Pachter is implying is that gamers, instead of spending $5 for online play a month for one game, are going to instead buy other $60 games, presumably with their own premium schemes. It's being implied that gamers are rationing their time definitively, and that nowhere in these budgeting decisions is "find something else to do."

Consumers will only bend so much before they break. It's a lesson the industry learned in 1983, and it's one that bigger companies would do well to pay attention to in 2010.

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