This graf shows how the physical media distribution isdecreasing, while the digital media is increasing. This is dueto technical convergence.
Article: «The price of digital»• It costs less to buy games from Tesco than it does via Steam.• Digital prices don’t drop as quickly as physical.• GAME cut Skyrim’s price to just over £22 before Christmas, over digital platforms it held its £34.99 RRP.
Comparing pricesThere is a difference in £11 from cheapest to most expensive when buyingFifa Street. The cheapest is from ‘Simply Games’, and is probably so becausethe distributor specialises in games, and does not have many otherexpences as it is only an online shop. Asda on the other hand offers a rangeof different products, and is also selling the game in store, and will thereforalso have more expences to cover. For example getting the game to thestore and pay the wages of the workers in the store.
The prices for Mass Effect 3 for Xbox 360, also varied alot in price. In many cases the price was higher if therewas extra content with the game.
The prices for Wii Fit were pretty simialar everywhere, except for atiwantoneofthose.com. In the information about this retailar, it says ‘hard to shopfor people’. This might indicate that the site is not very seriouse or customerfriendly, and maybe saves some expences on that.
RDRThe cheapest way to get hold on a copy, is to buy the pre-owned one.Here, the money only goes to the retailar, not the producers and developersof the game.Other than that, the price range is not very wast. There is about a £5difference, the higher the price – the more validity in name of retailer.
Recent advancements in connective technology included within game consoles has had an impact on modes of game distribution. What are the different modes of distribution and what impact has this technological convergence had for the various console game institutions, retailers and audiences?There are two main ways to distibrute video games.1. Physical media: where you have an actual object – a plastic box, a printed cover and the game disc itself. This physical media is purchased from a range of retail outlets in a pre- packaged form.2. Digital media: Complete gaming software downloadable from online stores.The distribution of the physical media objects happen in retailstores, such as Game and Gamestation (niche shops), Argos,HMV and WHSmiths (general entertainment stores), andsupermarkets such as Tesco and Asda. In most cases thecomsumer can decide to order the game online or buy it instore.Digital media is distributed through the platform stores.Playstation Store for Playstation and PSP owners, Xbox LiveMarketplace for Xbox owners, Direct2Drive , for PC owners,Steam for PC and Mac owners and Mac App Store for Macowners.
The increace in technical convergence of the platform,especially the fact that they are all now connected to theinternett, has had a huge impact on the distribution of theproducts. In 2008, 90% of all games were sold by retailars,but in 2011 40% were sold online. The fact is that, withonline distribution, there are far less post-productionexpences which should make the price of the game lower.All the clear advantages of online distribution suggests thatit has come to stay.
But the retailers should not be forgotten just yet, as themajority of sales still go through them. They aretherefore in the position to threaten the producers tonot realase the games to digital distribution, if thegames are to be distributed in the stores. Still, the bigretailer ‘Game’, have had to close down many shopsin spring 2012, because of bankruptcy.As for the impact the technical convergence has onthe platform, it creates greater competition. Forexample now that the App Store has started sellingcomplete games, Apple is in the position to pressuregame producers and developers into releasing thegame to Mac before it is realeased to PC.