Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade average game prices rising

Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade downloadable game service for the Xbox 360 has been a part of the console since it launched in 2005. In the beginning, many games were priced at 400 Microsoft points (about $5). The average price of a game on the service has been going up over the years, with Gamesindustry.biz (free registration required) reporting that Xbox Live Arcade's portfolio director Chris Charla admitted this week, " ... you can see that average prices on XBLA have crept up over the last few years."

The story states that back in 2009 just 21 of the of the 86 games released via Xbox Live Arcade were priced at 1200 Microsoft points each (about $15). In 2010 27 of the 86 games on Xbox Live Arcade were priced at 1200 Microsoft points. While it's still mid-July 2011, Xbox Live Arcade has already released 20 games for 1200 Microsoft points.

This trend towards higher prices on Xbox Live Arcade has been contrary to the entire downloadable games industry which has seen prices taking significant drops. This is especially evident for games designed for mobile phones such as the iPhone or Android-based phones where its extremely rare to see a game priced for more than $10. However Charla suggests that higher priced games lead to better quality games overall, including comparing them to retail based games. He states, "I think the games that we're shipping - a Limbo or a Castle Crashers - are as good as anything on the market." However Charla would not comment if Microsoft might offer downloadable free-to-play games in the future.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Lodsys strikes again with more lawsuits against game publishers

Next Story

Google acquires company with facial recognition tech

16 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

I see this becoming a huge problem in the long run. I mean what's gonna make them any different from retail games, if the price keeps going up? And a lot of the most recent 1200msp games, have not been any better than some of my older 400-800msp games.

Price goes up, the quality of arcade games go down.

I own loads of the older arcade games, however the majority of the games released in the last year have been poor.

this is so true of many major things. we as humans are starting to get less, for more cost. It is odd that we continue to buy things without so much as a peep.

what a bunch of sheep we are.

At the same time;
The quality of the Arcade games themselves has gone up as well. More and more we're seeing games that give us our bang for the buck.

Now it's time we question the crappy games that go retail priced @ $60 (USD).

schiz-o-phren-ic said,
Now it's time we question the crappy games that go retail priced @ $60 (USD).

*cough*Homefront*cough*cough*

In related news:

Prices of pretty much everything (except apparently iPhone games) went up over last few years. Or products now come in smaller packages, concealing the price increase.

Blame that on the stupid people (Myself included !! ) who bought all those COD DLC at 1200 msp.
I'm kind of accustomed to the 1200 price point now - my brain keeps telling me "It's not so much for a whole game, you paid that for 5 maps"

Kwanza said,
Blame that on the stupid people (Myself included !! ) who bought all those COD DLC at 1200 msp.
I'm kind of accustomed to the 1200 price point now - my brain keeps telling me "It's not so much for a whole game, you paid that for 5 maps"

i respect you sir. it takes a strong man to admit his faults and mistakes. that said I have never bought any of those map packs for the simple reason that I was hoping to avoid exactly what is happening now. I don't believe the majority of the items that are DLC content are anywhere near a fair market price.

I truly miss the old days of PC gaming where you released a game and then sometime later you released a fully loaded expansion pack and then you called it a day. none of this nickel and dime **** they are doing now.

macrosslover said,

i respect you sir. it takes a strong man to admit his faults and mistakes. that said I have never bought any of those map packs for the simple reason that I was hoping to avoid exactly what is happening now. I don't believe the majority of the items that are DLC content are anywhere near a fair market price.

I truly miss the old days of PC gaming where you released a game and then sometime later you released a fully loaded expansion pack and then you called it a day. none of this nickel and dime **** they are doing now.

All of this is my same opinion.

halo2k27 said,
Cost of developing games are going up and up, as people expect more and more.

I suppose that's true. I didn't think about it that way.

halo2k27 said,
Cost of developing games are going up and up, as people expect more and more.

very true.. they are not just some stupid games now they are getting more complex and longer..

halo2k27 said,
Cost of developing games are going up and up, as people expect more and more.

Methods of making games, the education and technology isn't going up in price though cause they outsource it or use a lot of powerful computers. Sometimes they just like to raise the price to make more profit to make their company worth more.