Analyst: Content Is "King," Gamers To Spend Less On DLC
While extra content seems like a universal positive in the gaming industry these days, many gamers don't like the idea of being forced to buy additional content...especially when they thought it should've been part of the original production.
According to NPD analyst Anita Frazier, the video game industry is just running all over the film industry in North America; the former averaging $47.79 per consumer per month, which makes this "one of the most transformative years" for gaming. In addition to saying the industry is "recession resistant," Frazier adds that content "drives the industry," and gamers won't pay more for downloadable content. It's not so much the DLC itself, but the pricing; after examining nine different types of DLC, Frazier believes the "honeymoon period" for DLC is over. Simply put, gamers just aren't dropping the cash on the pricey extras. Therefore, adding a single level at 1/3 of the full game's price isn't something that's going to yield dividends anymore. Frazier says it's about the current "attitudes and opinions" of the gamers and we should interpret these results as "directional reporting." So essentially, if the DLC is very reasonably priced, it'll likely be successful, but that premium-priced content hasn't been so hot lately.
The bottom line is something we've been saying all along- content really is king. It's great to be able to build and expand upon a game after it has been released, but that doesn't mean developers can slack off on the product, or purposely leave out content in an effort to make more money at a later date. The good news is that gamers clearly aren't interested in rewarding such behavior so maybe we don't have to worry in the future.
7/28/2009 Ben Dutka