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The Xbox One has had a great deal of criticism this week, but it appears there is at least one person on the side of Microsoft – Gears of War co-creator Cliff Bleszinski.

Bleszinski's argument is that with the cost of making triple-A titles getting increasingly more expensive, publishers simply can't recoup their investment while the used game market exists.

"You cannot have game and marketing budgets this high while also having used and rental games existing. The numbers do NOT work people," he Tweeted.

He continued: "The visual fidelity and feature sets we expect from games now come with sky high costs. Assassin's Creed games are made by thousands of devs."

"Those of you telling me 'then just lower game budgets' do understand how silly you sound, right?"

And the former Epic man also suggests gamers angry at the Xbox One 24-hour online check-in should direct this frustration at internet service providers, not Microsoft.

"If you can afford high speed internet and you can't get it where you live direct your rage at who is responsible for pipe blocking you," he Tweeted.

Bleszinski also believes any talk of Sony's PS4 having already won the next generation battle is premature.

"If you're saying the next round of the console war is over before it even started then you're a f*****g idiot. This is a multi year fight."

Just in case anyone thinks Bleszinski is biased towards Xbox, he's "buying both a Ps4 and an Xbox One".

Xbox One launches this November priced £429, with the PS4 also out this holiday at the lower price of £349.

Source: @therealcliffyb

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mcnasty72's Avatar

mcnasty72

How about this crappy ass version of NBA 2K I've been playing on the PC for the last three seasons? Missing half of what is on the console version. These guys are full of it.
Posted 00:45 on 18 June 2013
Bloodstorm's Avatar

Bloodstorm@ pblive

I know, i'm calling fake on that too.
Posted 13:47 on 15 June 2013
pblive's Avatar

pblive@ Bloodstorm

What? Someone in the industry actually speaking sense?
Posted 16:27 on 14 June 2013
goldenboot76's Avatar

goldenboot76

Take-Two's CEO said that to prevent used-game sales, 2K and Rockstar provide high quality games and support them with very very good post-launch downloadable content, and thus, people are less likely to trade them (and thus, less copies for customers to sell to GameStop). And I think it's working, because I have never seen an used copy of Red Dead Redemption in any game store I've been to.
Posted 15:42 on 14 June 2013
Bloodstorm's Avatar

Bloodstorm

Reggie weighs in
Posted 14:09 on 14 June 2013
BrySkye's Avatar

BrySkye@ Syme

The thing about games sales Syme, or anything in retail for that matter, is that what the shops do with prices is irrelevant to the suppliers or publishers.

Retail chains buy their stock from wholesale providers or publishers. They buy their allocation of stock up-front (or through credit) for a flat fee. The wholesale price.
That's the point when the publishers get their money, without a single copy actually being sold to a customer.
This is why you see a lot of "units shipped" figures, as that is the number most important to a publisher, though actual sales figures sound much nicer provided they are high enough.
Sales to customers only really matters to the stores bottom line,

What happens after that doesn't really matter to the publishers.
Whether a store sells a game for £5 or £100, the fixed wholesale price has already gone to whoever published the game before it ever went on the shelf.

The reason used games are a problem is that the stores buy them from customers for significantly less than the wholesale price, and then sell them at their own price, the difference of which is pure profit for the store.
In other words, the shops dealing heavily in used games buy less stock wholesale from their suppliers, and that's how publishers don't get money from used games.

That's why a lot of publishers stopped supplying GAME when their credit rating plummeted and they went into administration.
They just couldn't pay the publishers upfront (or get credit) in order to get stock to sell.

So yeah, say every game is sold by publishers to retailers for £20.
When the shop sells the game at £40, they recoup the £20 of buying the stock and make a £20 profit for themselves.
If they sell the same game at £10, then they are actually taking a loss of £10.
The publisher got the same amount of money regardless.
Posted 13:14 on 14 June 2013
pblive's Avatar

pblive@ altaranga

Not necessarily. I think 2Mbps is considered minimum for streaming anything, 8Mbps or more is considered high speed. You should be able to get up to 24Mpbs without Fibre in certain places (though you'd probably have to live pretty near an exchange).

Speaking from experience, Fibre makes a huge difference, and I'm not talking cereal.
Posted 11:35 on 14 June 2013
altaranga's Avatar

altaranga@ pblive

Ah ok. Thanks.

What is considered hi-speed these days? Are we talking fibre optics?
Posted 11:07 on 14 June 2013
JimB22's Avatar

JimB22

Am I wrong or do developers have less of a chance of making any more money from games if there bought, finished and ten just sit on my shelf gathering dust, as apposed to me trading it and them maybe getting a slice of it from the retail outlets.
Posted 10:15 on 14 June 2013
Llamazoid's Avatar

Llamazoid

No offence to Cliff but he's severely underestimating the ability of game designers here. Many game developers have created innovative and engaging gaming experiences that are on par and in some cases superior to the Triple A titles with a significantly tighter budget.

Regarding his comment on game and marketing budgets being too high and unable to exist with used games. He is correct, "The numbers don't work." However this is not solely because of used games, it's the problem of having budgets so high that it's almost impossible for a product to get a profitable return. You just have to look at Square Enix's financial situation and EA's attitude to Dead Space if it doesn't sell X amount of copies. Companies expectations are too high and instead of focusing on cutting costs and making smart marketing strategies and trying out new markets, they push the blame onto used games and piracy.

Cliff has to understand that retailers are suffering the same problem as Publishers right now. Retailers can sell hundreds of consoles but make anything from £2-10 per sale. Despite selling a variety of games and accessories it's an unsustainable niche market. Retailers like Gamestop, Cex and GAME, are making their living off used games it's how they're able to sustain their business. Without that many of these stores have collapsed.

While I agree that Publishers should get some revenue back from used games, I don't think it should be anything more than 10-20%.

Eventually Publishers will have to realize that as time goes on a games value drops. They have to come up with ideas to get direct finances from their consumer without appearing to screw us over.
Posted 00:11 on 14 June 2013
pblive's Avatar

pblive@ altaranga

If we're going digital for retail AND there's a persistent online world it will require high speed Internet for keeping up with downloads and streaming games as they use a cloud system to constantly update.

Not to mention the strain of streaming HD TV and movies.
Posted 23:15 on 13 June 2013
altaranga's Avatar

altaranga

That Cliff thinks he's a Ledge.
Posted 23:11 on 13 June 2013
s_h_a_d_o's Avatar

s_h_a_d_o

'Mouth' Bleszinski strikes again - perhaps publishers and developers should consider reigning in on their own [ever-increasing] contribution to the bloat that constitutes the AAA industry these days?
I shall continue to proffer the bulk of mine own disposable income to those eminently satisfying games that arise from small independent teams, thank you very much.
In the words of Rik Mayall... "Look out! Cliff!!!"
Posted 23:00 on 13 June 2013
altaranga's Avatar

altaranga

What's with the hi-speed internet thing? I didn't know it was an issue.
Posted 22:00 on 13 June 2013
tvr77's Avatar

tvr77

I think this is one of those debates that is just impossible to conclude. Its pick a side or sit on the fence but nobody wins.

I hate the thought of buying a game for £35-45 pounds, playing it for a few days, maybe its fun maybe its not and then......well thats it, the end.
Depending on exactly where all this pre-owned stuff ends up, games have to be given more life further down the line in the form of FREE dlc or at least very very cheap, maybe new trophies and achievements added later on would be cool, better leaderboards and tournaments, these are all reasons for us to hold on to our games. There has to be more than multiplayer offered, i'm sure some folks only like to kick it solo.
Posted 19:19 on 13 June 2013
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