Every time a new bit of technology rolls out, early adopters and most consumers generally expect that this new gadget, format or wonder-machine, with all its whiz-bang bells and whistles, will carry a heftier price tag than its predecessor. With 3D being the new kid in video game town, it wouldn’t be completely unreasonable to assume that a 3D enabled game might be a little more expensive than its flat brethren. So when Sony Computer Entertainment Europe big-shot Andrew House came out and said that making 3D PlayStation 3 games more expensive hadn’t even occurred to them, we all had to stop and make sure he wasn’t just messing with us.
Let’s go to the tape:
"Somebody asked how much of a premium are we going to charge on 3D games, and I said 'we haven't considered charging for one.'" Because it's not significant enough an investment to really demand that."
That’s certainly good news for gamers that are excited to bust up some Helghast in all three dimensions, but probably awful news for any publishers out there eager to make an extra buck by slapping the 3D label on their games. But you heard it straight from the horse’s mouth; the initial investment to add 3D capability simply doesn’t warrant a price increase.
It’s actually quite refreshing to see this type of honesty from any corporation. Considering that for all Average-Joe-Gamer knows, adding 3D to a game could take millions of extra dollars and offices full of increased manpower to implement. So Sony could have easily pulled a fast one here. For them to come out and basically say, “No, we got a guy. His name is Frank. He comes in on Saturdays on his way to drop his kids off at Gymboree and just flips the 3D switch for us on these games real quick,” is a pretty solid move.
Whether or not the lack of price gouging is completely altruistic is debatable, though. It could be that Sony has learned a lesson with the super slow adoption rate of high definition televisions, which have only really started to move substantially in the last few years, due to their being pretty much the only option on retail shelves now. Not to mention the snail’s pace at which Blu-ray has been adopted and is purchased when compared to its standard def, less costly counterpart, DVD.
Perhaps Sony realizes that 3D is already a fairly sizeable investment for consumers and hopes to kick start adoption rates by not nickel-and-diming us at every turn. Blu-ray, especially, has shown that if consumers find a cheaper version of something to be more than adequate, they don’t see the point of dropping the extra money, so this is probably a really smart move on Sony’s part.
How about it Ranters? Any out there excited for 3D games? Is Sony looking out for us on this one, or are they just trying to play it safe by not adding to the huge barrier of entry on their already prohibitively priced tech?