We didn’t get the price cut on the PlayStation 3 that we expected at E3 this year and in the past few weeks the consumers aren’t the only ones asking Sony to drop the price. Activision has threatened to stop supporting the platform if the price doesn’t drop. Now, Tecmo Koei has stated that they’ve been asking Sony to cut the price for a while now.
While the pressure is on Sony, we probably will not see a price drop until this holiday season at the earliest. This will no doubt give Sony a boost in sales and increase the install base, but will it be enough?
Currently the cheapest PlayStation 3 on the market is $399.99. Even if Sony takes the knife to the price and cuts it down to $349.99, it is still the most expensive console on the market by $100. Personally, I don’t believe that this will satisfy Activision in the long run. Sure, a few hundred thousand more consoles will be sold this holiday, but what happens after Christmas? The sales numbers will return to the pre-price cut levels and everyone will start complaining again. The circle of life continues!
Meanwhile, everyone is waiting for the new slim version of the PlayStation 3 to be announced. We can assume that the slim version will come out at the same price as the current SKU’s. Then, hopefully, the price of the 80GB and 160GB models will come down as they clear out the retail channel. Rumors like this only hurt them in the long run, but only Sony can stop the leaks in their company.
Of course, this is all speculation. Sony hasn’t announced anything regarding the PS3 Slim or a price cut. What they have done is announce some very exciting games coming to the console this holiday and in 2010. For most people, the barrier of entry isn’t so much the price as it is the existence of Sony’s AAA titles at retail. Games like MGS4 and GTAIV can only take the console so far. Once God of War 3 and The Last Guardian hit, I believe console sales will follow.
Instead of Activision and Tecmo Koei complaining about the price of the console, they should be concentrating on bringing great games to market. Even with the recession going on, people still want to play games. That’s not going to change, whether the console is $400 or $350.