Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 24th May 2013 17:26 UTC
Games So, the Xbox One disaster continues. Microsoft's policy for dealing with the used games market has reportedly leaked - and it's a clear and direct attack to destroy the used games market. Prices for used games will be set at the retail value of a new game, and retailers have to hook into Microsoft's computer systems and comply with Microsoft's terms and conditions.
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RE[5]: Comment by jigzat
by WereCatf on Wed 29th May 2013 03:25 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by jigzat"
WereCatf
Member since:
2006-02-15

Assembling a car is different than developing software. Sure cars are also designed and there is research but the teams are a lot smaller, most engines were already developed years ago, chassis are almost the same across the same line, most of the time they just get a facelift, and most importantly the production cost is divided by each assembled car during the production time. A mayor game development can cost around 50 million dollars and they employ just in the game creation hundreds of people (not accounting resellers advertising distribution packaging). And the whole 50 million is expended before selling the first game. A car program might cost more in the long run but the cost is differed, if they see the car is not selling well they could just stop the line and save some money, that just can't happened right now in video games model. If the game is a failure there is no chance to spare some cash.


Your comparison to the car industry is terribly short-sighted. Even just the act of altering an existing model involves re-configuring the production line, something that may already in and of itself cost millions, but there is a lot of engineering involved as even the slightest change may affect fuel economy, balance and safety of passenger and any change in such requires updating EPA-ratings and the likes, there's constant on-going crash dummy test that are definitely not cheap stuff and so on and so forth. It's not just "get parts, slap them together, call it a car." Also, if you count publishers, resellers, advertising companies and the likes with games you need to count all those same things with cars, too. Cars don't just magically appear from the thin air.

Also, your claim that if a game is a bust there are no costs to be saved is not correct. There are many games that have been bust, but the companies have still managed to get some of their money back from selling the IP related to the game, for example. Also, the tools and assets made could be used for another game, saving both time and money.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by jigzat
by jigzat on Wed 29th May 2013 18:52 in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by jigzat"
jigzat Member since:
2008-10-30

Assembling a car is different than developing software. Sure cars are also designed and there is research but the teams are a lot smaller, most engines were already developed years ago, chassis are almost the same across the same line, most of the time they just get a facelift, and most importantly the production cost is divided by each assembled car during the production time. A mayor game development can cost around 50 million dollars and they employ just in the game creation hundreds of people (not accounting resellers advertising distribution packaging). And the whole 50 million is expended before selling the first game. A car program might cost more in the long run but the cost is differed, if they see the car is not selling well they could just stop the line and save some money, that just can't happened right now in video games model. If the game is a failure there is no chance to spare some cash.

Your comparison to the car industry is terribly short-sighted. Even just the act of altering an existing model involves re-configuring the production line, something that may already in and of itself cost millions, but there is a lot of engineering involved as even the slightest change may affect fuel economy, balance and safety of passenger and any change in such requires updating EPA-ratings and the likes, there's constant on-going crash dummy test that are definitely not cheap stuff and so on and so forth. It's not just "get parts, slap them together, call it a car." Also, if you count publishers, resellers, advertising companies and the likes with games you need to count all those same things with cars, too. Cars don't just magically appear from the thin air.

Also, your claim that if a game is a bust there are no costs to be saved is not correct. There are many games that have been bust, but the companies have still managed to get some of their money back from selling the IP related to the game, for example. Also, the tools and assets made could be used for another game, saving both time and money.


I could also say that you vision about software and game development is short sighted too, I'm actually a software developer although I'm not in the car industry so I don't have the whole vision about car development. But if you look around you could see some hints about it.

http://www.theautochannel.com/news/date/19961126/news02590.html
http://www.pst.ifi.lmu.de/projekte/Sensoria/del_24/D3.b.pdf
http://www.reuters.com/article/2009/07/09/us-japan-summit-nissan-id...

What it basically say is the amount of zeroes behind a card development, and also that the software might account for 80% of the cost, and also confirms that in order to reduce cost they use the same platform and of course a new engine is not designed for every car.

Of course not all cars cost the same, the development cost for a chevy volt is huge but it is a hybrid car so is not the average car.

And the same thing goes to software and games, not all games cost the same. As the other guy pointed some games are basically just recycled specially sports games where they just add new teams and player names. But they are not the rule to measure the industry.

Speaking of cost the development of both cars and games might be in the same rank, although the time is different but the car industry is enormous and is backed up by very deep pocket investors and banks. If both BMW and Criterion (a development team for example go to the same bank and ask a loan they will receive with more attention the people from BMW since is a known brand and industry.

Yes you could license back some IP if you have a strong one which is not the rule but not the tools since most of the time they are licensed to a specific company (except in counties like yours) and cannot be re-sold. Sure some tools and engines are given for free while the game is being developed but you must pay a fee for every unit sold.

Now regarding the production line, altering a production line is not that expensive (I am not saying it cost a dime), that is the whole point of production lines, they reduce costs, but my point is that if you projected for example 100 cars and the production cost for each one is 10 but your are not selling much so you decided to stop the production and launch a new model, that is not going to cost you 1000, if you stop the production at 20 you could save 800.

In the case of videogames burning a DVD doesn't cost much and if game is screwed (Medal of Honor for example) the whole investment was basically lost, you cannot spare much by calling the packaging company and say "you know what the game is not selling well stop burning discs".

Of course in cars you would also lost the development cost but they have deeper pockets,a model pipelines, different model lines, and they can sell the already built cars in a different country at cost.

Someone pointed out about the cartridge back in the 80's and 90's but the business model was basically the same, the memory cartridges served as intellectual protection method since they were really expensive to make and the profit margins were low (compared with today media) and there was no internet nor ebay, when the industry wrongly moved to a broad format like CD they were hopping to get more margins which they got initially but since the same format was open to computers duplication began and the internet make it worst.

I don't think they are worried about you lending the game to your best friend, they are worried about actually piracy and turning game lending into a business.

Edited 2013-05-29 19:00 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1