While Take-Two is the first major publisher to commit to a $70 price for one of its next-gen games, the company now says this won’t necessarily apply to everything.
As part of Take-Two‘s post-earnings call, where the publisher announced a record Q1 and strong revenue from its online games, the company was asked about its decision to price NBA 2K21 $70 on PS5 and Xbox Series X.
CEO Strauss Zelnick explained that while it believes the price hike is long overdue, it doesn’t want to commit to $70 as the base price for all its games going forward. Prices, according to Zelnick, are set on a game-by-game basis.
“I would just observe there hasn’t been a frontline price increase for a very long time although costs have increased significantly,” Zelnick told investors.
“But most importantly we believe we’re delivering the highest-quality titles in the business and consumers are staying more engaged than ever. Games have extraordinary playability and replayability and they offer many, many hours of entertainment. We think it’s a great value. It does rely on our continuing to deliver amazing experiences and that’s our strategy and our goal.”
In an interview with Games Industry ahead of the earnings reveal, Zelnick clarified that this isn’t a coordinated move by all publishers, only that it’s one that makes sense for Take-Two.
“Obviously, we don’t speak for the industry and the industry naturally does not coordinate on these matters, to say the very least,” he said.
“And from our point of view, it’s an extremely modest price change given that prices haven’t changed for a very long time.”
Indeed, no other publisher has yet to commit to $70. Ubisoft, for instance, confirmed that – at least for now – its 2020 next-gen games will cost the standard $60. With that said, reports indicate that some are already considering raising the price to $70.
Take-Two’s position on this is significant not only because it commands some of the biggest franchises in gaming, but also because it owns multiple publishing labels of varying sizes. In other words, it has the reach and power to normalise $70 as the new standard.