The year is wrapping up, and that means we’re nearing the busiest time for video game releases. And even though covid-19 has thrown a wrench in the entire industry and led to numerous delays, a few big games are still launching in the next few weeks. But if you want to enjoy them, you’ll need to fork over 70 bucks (or more) as publishers begin transitioning into a new, more expensive era of gaming.
Video games becoming more expensive isn’t entirely surprising. Since at least 2020, companies like Sony have made it clear that, moving forward, game prices would be going up from $60 to $70. But it’s still worth noting, as many big games this year released at $60 or less, that a majority of the biggest games coming out this fall and into early next year will now cost more, even on older consoles.
Here are all the games launching in the next few months that will cost $70 or more:
- Gotham Knights - Oct. 25
- Call of Duty Modern Warfare II (2022) - Oct. 28
- God of War Ragnarök (PS5) - Nov. 9
- The Callisto Protocol (PS5, Xbox Series X/S) - Dec. 1
Winter / Spring 2023
- Forspoken - Jan. 24, 2023
- Dead Island 2 - Feb. 2, 2023
- Hogwart’s Legacy - Feb. 9, 2023
- Wild Hearts - Feb. 17, 2023
- Skull and Bones - Mar. 9, 2023
There are various reasons for these increased prices, from inflation to more expensive and longer development cycles to good old-fashioned greed. Whatever the reasons behind the price increase, it seems to be here to stay. And it’s also becoming clear that publishers aren’t interested in offering up free next-gen upgrades anymore, or lower prices on PS4 and Xbox One versions. Some games listed above, like Call of Duty and Dead Island 2, are charging $70 regardless if you are playing on PS4 or PS5.
While I understand that developing and publishing video games is a very expensive process, it’s hard to stomach these price increases when games seem to be filled more than ever with microtransactions and other ways to siphon away players’ dollars long after the initial purchase. Some might assume that the human developers working on these games will get more money, but that’s also highly unlikely, especially in an industry with a long history of exploiting its workers and which still, in 2022, has almost no labor unions.
Unfortunately for folks who can’t afford to routinely spend $70 or more on a single game, this seems to be the new normal moving forward as Sony, Ubisoft, and other publishers commit to the price increase. In a time when Game Pass has become incredibly popular and free-to-play hits like Fortnite and Genshin Impact continue to dominate the world, it seems like the worst time to ask people to plop down yet another $10. For a lot of gamers, it might be too much too fast, especially with more affordable alternatives—like game streaming or monthly subscription plans—available than ever before.