Basic PS3 Online Service is Free


Henning has already blogged about Ken Kutaragi’s interview with Japanese site PC Impress Watch, but in the 3rd part of the interview Kutaragi-san confirms that basic online services with the PS3 will be free. However un-surprisingly Sony intends to pull in some revenue through downloadable content.

I’ve mentioned before how I’m unwilling to pay for downloadable content as I believe that I’ve already paid enough in buying the game initially.

Unless the game is truly incredible making me keep hold of the game permanently (GTA: San Andreas) then I may change my mind about paying for downloadable content.

However at the moment the amount of games I keep permanently is about 2% of the total games that I buy with the other 98% traded in for credit. What is the point of paying for downloadable content for the games I sell on? I won’t get what I paid for the DC when I trade the game in so I will be losing even more money. The only games worth paying for the extra content are the true classics that I will keep hold of. However what if the extra content turns a good game into a great game? Will the extra content make me want to keep hold of the game permanently? And exactly how much will they charge aswell?

I will have to think long & hard before I do pay for downloadable content but at the moment I’m against paying for it.

What about you guys are you willing to pay for extra content?

Gamesindustry.biz – Basic Online PS3 Service is Free


Written by: Gary - News Contributor


  1. #1 by briankeith on June 12th, 2006

    I have and will continue to do so. What I’m worried about is price. If the content was let’s say 30 cents.. Would that really be such a big deal? The problem is we all know it will be more than that. For me, this is the true issue. How much do they want us to pay? With the 360, there are some items for download at prices that are just nuts. Not because the price is beyond reach but what they are asking for the price. Wallpaper? That’s just crazy. I don’t want to pay for wallpaper. But then, if it were 30 cents and it looked really nice.. Maybe. (:

  2. #2 by Matt on June 12th, 2006

    I have no problem paying for additional maps for multiplayer or new quests in games like Oblivion or GTA 4. I also have no problem paying for themes that are in the backdrop for my favorite sports teams.

    Everything will not appeal to me but it must appeal to someone. I would like to see the prices come down. I think that people would spend more money if they were cheaper.

  3. #3 by Segitz on June 12th, 2006

    Hm…

    I HAVE a problem with such content mentioned above. WHY should I pay for a freakin backdrop, when i can download wallpapers and stuff for FREE on the net? The PS3 will have a built in webbrowser, that way, I am NOT willing to pay for such things.

    What I fear MOST, is that games will get shorter, but stay the same in price and try to cash in thru downloads… (Oblivion anyone??).

    First stripping the 360 ver. off the possibility to use usermade mods and then CHARGING for a freakin HORSE ARMOUR!

    It’d be cool for AAA games like GTA (like Gary said), because that could really prolong our gaming experience even further.

    Imagine GT5 when there are “only” 100 cars avail. after initial buy… The rest must be bought online for REAL cash. That’d SUCK!

    I really fear, that this kind of added cash in will further HARM gaming (as if the high prices arent already high enough).

  4. #4 by Henning on June 12th, 2006 [ 0 Points ]

    That’s where my fear is. Take a look at how many tracks are in Project Gotham Racing 3 (on the Xbox 360) versus Project Gotham Racing 2 (on the original Xbox). There is a wide variance there, and I miss many of the locales in PGR2. Will additional tracks become available for a small (?) fee?

    As long as I feel that my original purchase was worth the money, I don’t care if they add packs later on. It’s a nice way for those who really love a game to extend their experience. But if the original game was too short or didn’t have enough content, and if they then sold additional content, I’d be upset.

  5. #5 by benj on June 12th, 2006

    What would be an idea for Sonys downloadable content system is the use of ‘points’ or credit system, like XBOX Live, but with a fundemental difference.

    Trade able downloaded content.

    First loading, say £/$10 worth of credits onto your account. You choose your content you want to download (a new track for GT:HD, and new set of powers for Heveanly Sword). But once you have finished with that content (eg. you do not play the game as much anymore), you can exchange it back to Sony for a certain number of credits (or maybe even the full amount). This creates the illusion that Sony is offering a much better deal to the consumer, as they swap between different content.

    To counteract the lose of revenue, the value of iteams would have to be higher, and intially, with small numbers of games and iteams, the system would not gain sufficient profit for Sony. Yet after a while, with more games and much more downloadable content, consumers would be forced to spend more to buy credits.

    Example ::

    [] GamerX buys new map for Resistance: Fall of Man 500credits

    [] New WarHawk Mission released 400credits

    [] GamerX ‘Sells’ back the R:FM map, and buys new WarHawk Mission with credits he gets back

    [] New F1 track is released, priced at 200credits

    [] GamerX can’t sell he WarHawk mission back yet because he hasn’t finished it…but his buddies want to race him on the new F1 track, so GamerX pays another £10 into his account have both

    Add more games, add more content = Fair seeming downloadable content system (if the quality is there!)

    Apologies if this rambled but i hope i got my point across

    benj

  6. #6 by Jay on June 12th, 2006

    who’s to say that downloadable content is strictly for games bought for PS3? Maybe that downloadable content is also minigames like Live Arcade has or even older PS games. Think of it this way, you could download Metal Gear Solid and Final Fantasy VII without worrying about scratches on the discs, disc read problems, or even switching out discs to continue progress? That would be great for backwards compatibility because, let’s face it, we all use to own a PS1, or at least most of us. We were a lot younger back then, and probably didn’t care about the condition of a disc as much as we do now. I was only about 9 or 10 at the time. Had my fair share of games that wouldn’t play anymore because of the nhumber of scratches.

    other downloadable content could also be for music, tv shows, and movies. As for add-ons to games, they should run pretty cheap, if not, free, unless its a map pack or something. I would gladly pay $10 or something for a car pack for GT5 (especially if there’s a muscle car pack) or extra missions for GTA4. Minor upgrades like skins and whatnot, unless bundled together in a big way, should be, for the most part, free.

  7. #7 by Leo on June 13th, 2006

    I think that benj’s idea is great, but I really doubt that a system that is complex like that will be adopted. With new games at about 60USD, I think that gamers will speak with their wallets as far as dlable content goes: a short game that releases dlable content for a high price will (in theory) either not sell well at retail or the dlable content won’t sell well.

  8. #8 by phipscube on June 13th, 2006

    Its funny how “content” gets badged as extra game content… Ken mentions iTunes and Apple in his latest interview… Is it not possible that you’ll have an option to buy music, video and maybe TV shows online? I hope so. I’m not bothered at all about “Addons” for games unless its something worthy like a whole new track, theme or even music (I like the extras with Wipeout Pure on PSP for example, although its free now, I’d pay for new tracks and stuff if they started charging). I don’t want to pay for small things like you have on Xbox 360. I can’t believe some of the things Microsoft are selling on live, its almost desperate.

    I WILL pay for smaller games available on the PNP. The only things I buy on Xbox 360 are Arcade games. Geomerty Wars is one such game thats worth MORE than they want for it. I’d pay to play homebrew also, I’m very interested in indie games as you find they have some unusually fresh ideas. Its good that Microsoft are looking at possibly including indie games in Live Arcade. I hope Sony follow suit here.

    I mainly hope that “content” includes a decent On-demand video service or even streamed TV shows. If Sony want to have PS3 as an all-in-one-replace-everything machine they have to cater for TV too. I’d completely drop my cable tv service if they can do something like this and have a big choice. Subscription to an On-Demand service would be fine. I’d rather do that than pay per view. But either way if they did this i’d much prefer it than wasting the amount of money I do now on cable. I only ever watch a few channels, the rest are full of cack. If I can come home at night and watch a few hours of on-demand content cheaply for specific shows then I find that much more streamlined to my life. I feel like my cable bill its 80% waste. Another good thing about on-demand is that we’d no longer need to set recordings for shows (As long as they have enough content). So DVR functionality wouldn’t be needed.

    But overall I see game content being only a small part of Sony’s plan. They are after Apples balls on this one I think, they are going for iTunes head on. I just hope its not like their connect service… In all honesty thats been sonys probelm over the last 3/4 years… their online content and software for delivery has been utter cack. I hope they pull it together for PS3.


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