View Full Version : Computer Games and $$$
11-09-2004, 05:52 AM
I recently noticed that some people are selling Thai versions of brand new Computergames on ebay (Ut2004, Battlefield Vietnam, Doom3 etc) for about 20€ shipping inclusive (they openly tell that they cost about 11€ in Thailand).
And these are not fake copies since they come with a working CD-Key for internet gaming.
Now what makes me wonder, I can't imagine the publishers selling the games with a loss over there (even though the prices are generally lower there and stuff like that)... so how many percent of the ~50€ these games cost in Europe are pure win?
I even think that there might be illegal price talks, to keep the prices artificially high (at least illegal here in Germany).
Or am I just missing the bigger picture? /images/graemlins/confused.gif
11-09-2004, 06:38 AM
I bought MOHAA from eBay from Asia and it fully works off- and online.
I dit have my doubts if it was really a legit copy of the game since the printing on the CD's and the CD sleeve looked a bit cheap.
That the same things have a different price in different countries is normal. Doom 3 costs in the US for instance $49.99 where here it costs $77.50 (€60).
Everything in Thailand is cheaper compared to most Western countries but that can also have to with a very low sales tax combined with low profit margins for local distributors and vendors.
Still for a sale price of €11 the publisher won't have sold it below €9.50 because both the local distributor and vendor need their cut.
If those same rules apply here then a €60 game would generate about €39 of revenue for a distributor and vendor here together. €60 - 19% sales tax - €9.50 for the publisher
I would actually believe if that's how much they make of it.
edit ... Coming to think of it, I have never seen cheaper console and XBox games from Asia on eBay. There goes my "theory" /images/graemlins/blush.gif
11-09-2004, 09:07 AM
Hmm, Doom3 is even more expensive in NL?
Here, about 50-100km from the Dutch border, Doom3 was 54€ in the beginning but is now down to 44€... 16€ is quite a bit (ok we have only 16% sales tax not 19%).
Anyways I forgot to add, that these Asian versions are completly in English, not some localized product.
About the consoles, I am not exactly sure, but I heard that in some of these countries certain consoles arn't sold, because of the extremly high percentage of commercial game copies.
Edit: If that is really just the distributors, than selling Half-Life2 over steam for the same price is even more outrageous. Lets say the 9.50€ is what the publisher gets... so how much does the developer get? 4€? add the costs of Steam and it is maybe 8€... so Valve gets more than 400% more money when selling its game over steam?
Edit2: Online distribution is a good thing, but not if the prices are unreasonably high.
11-09-2004, 09:47 AM
I noticed the warning about HL2 a local retailer glued on his door: Steam download versions will go live the very moment the first retail copy of HL2 is registered. If anyone manages to snag one ahead of time and registers it (using a proxy and an anonymous email address of course), all hell breaks loose. I'm waiting for this to happen.
As for profits, well, what does a copy cost to manufacture? If you leave out R&D, games are dirt cheap to make. These copies might be sold with less royalties included to push the price down to competitive levels. They probably expect the west to pay for the R&D and the rest of the world is just a bonus...
11-09-2004, 12:11 PM
You got to remember part of what you're paying when you dish out for a game is shipping, handling, tax, and so on. Selling on-line means you don't need a fully staffed shop, insurance, gangster protection, etc.
11-09-2004, 04:01 PM
True Per128,but all that is also needed for Thailand.
Maybe it is cheaper there, but those guys buy it in a normal shop and ship it to europe by airmail, AND make quite a bit of money with it.
And it is still less than half the price!
11-10-2004, 03:20 AM
The publisher and developer probably get less money from Thai copies so the copies are cheap enough to compete with counterfeiters. After all, a fiver more for a legal copy is worth it, compared to thirty-fifty bucks more.
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