if you've ever owned a Nintendo console
you've probably noticed something about their games.
Brand new games and three-year-old classics
both retail for the same price.
Meanwhile, you can buy most other games a couple
months after they release at a 20 30 or
even 40 dollar discount.
So what makes Nintendo different?
Part of the answer lies in their hardware.
The Switch and the 3ds both use solid-state cartridges
instead of discs.
These cost more than the blu-ray discs used by the
PlayStation 4 and Xbox one.
Sometimes a lot more.
An 8 gigabyte Switch cartridge cost a publisher as much as a
50 gigabyte blu-ray disc.
And a 32 gigabyte cartridge costs 60% more than a blu-ray disc.
So if a developer's game is more than 8 gigabytes
they actually earn less selling the game on Switch
See the problem?
Why take the risk?
It's a simple business transaction dear boy ...
Now you might be thinking
"I download all my Switch games, who cares how much the cartridges cost?"
unfortunately retailers do.
they won't stock a game if the publisher is just
selling it online at a discount.
This isn't an issue limited to Nintendo either.
All publishers have to play by these rules if they want to sell their games in physical stores.
But that didn't stop stop an online uproar over the so called
"switch tax", where certain games cost 10 dollars
more on switch than on other platforms.
Of course, formats don't explain the bigger issue of why
Nintendo's first party games seemingly never drop in price.
But there's a very good reason for that:
They know you'll pay.
Let me put it another way.
Do you want to play Assassin's Creed 2?
Cool, it's on 6 different platforms...
Do you want to play an Assassin's Creed style open-world game?
Awesome, here are 20.
But if you want to play a Mario or Zelda game
there's only one way
a Nintendo device
Yes, Sony and Microsoft also produce
exclusive games with millions of fans
but they simply don't have Nintendo's
decades of consistency.
From the arcade era, to the first home consoles,
to the advent and perfection of 3d graphics
Nintendo has persevered
where other companies have faltered.
Nintendo games have a lineage that distinguishes what
they do from everything else
and it leads to the type of brand loyalty that
their competitors would kill for.
You can also see this in the Switch's attachment rate,
which is the percent of console
owners who also bought a specific game
by January 2018 more than half of switch
owners have bought the latest Mario Kart
Zelda or Mario game.
This is probably the biggest reason they can keep their prices high
Literally, because they can.
"I guess it's time to pay up."
But their is another reason Nintendo doesn't like to
discount their own games and it has to
do with the quality of their products
the Nintendo logo is practically a
guarantee that this is a good game
setting aside the fact that metacritic
may be an imperfect measure of game quality,
it's notable that in 2017
Nintendo's average score on the review
aggregator is one of the highest in the industry.
Nintendo's quality standards are what
When's the last time you could remember Nintendo releasing a buggy unfinished game?
directly to the business philosophy of a
This speaks late president and CEO of Nintendo
In an era of cheap low-quality mobile games,
he pushed high value games at Nintendo
quality experiences the developers take
time to polish, thus providing value to the customer.
And justifying that consistent MSRP.
But that intangible sense of Nintendo quality can't be sustained
if its games are also in the bargain bin.
this is psychology as much as it is marketing.
Price is not always but often a signal of quality.
Which is one reason many people won't buy generic painkillers.
Even though it's literally the same stuff as the name-brand.
There's actually another major media company
that operates in a similar way.
Just like Nintendo, Disney's brand is something people are willing to pay for.
but don't take it from me.
This is Rob Enderle, a veteran analyst with over 20 years in the technology industry.
Disney movies don't really get cheaper, it's the it's the one movie kids buy.
over and over again they'll paid the same price,
Disney will repremote it and
drive it through the drive it through the channel.
Nintendo's much more like that.
Disney like Nintendo knows how to
exploit its own storied history.
"Don't miss your chance to own these magical Disney videos before they disappear"
Back when video cassettes were all the rage
Disney didn't make all their old movies consistently available.
they'd keep them in the
"Disney Vault, get them before they're gone"
and rerelease them every 10 years
By limiting supply Disney was able to create demand amongst their customers.
Allowing them to sell their movies at full price
over and over and over again.
In fact, Disney's have been doing
that online now, by moving away from the Netflix and Amazon Prime's and
starting to bring out their own service
just like Nintendo they want to control
the platform, not just the content
and that's not even all the Nintendo and Disney have in common.
they're also after the same demographic.
tends to be a younger more G audience than the other ones.
The games are relatively safe, fairly low violence
or violence is cartoony if they've got it
Nintendo and Disney both design their products to be fun for all ages,
but they also know who's actually buying them
I think that they kind of feel Nintendo's safe.
where a lot of the game tiles from either Sony or Microsoft you know you don't have
that same familiarity
and don't feel quite as safe.
Just like Disney, you kind of be buy a Disney movie
you don't figure you're gonna walk in and find you know
woman's body parts all over the screen
to just you it's gonna
it's gonna be safe because it's got Disney on it.
Not to mention the culture of nostalgia these two companies have
cultivated over their lifetimes.
Now a days, many new parents have their own fond
memories of growing up with a Nintendo console.
They may not have played the latest Zelda game,
but they probably grew up with one.
They trust that Nintendo's games are good.
because they've experienced that quality for themselves.
So if Nintendo doesn't lower its prices because of its more expensive formats,
or because it might hurt their quality based brand identity,
or, well, because they can
then what hope to you the thrifty gamer have?
Well, there's honestly not much but,
here are a few tips to saving money on Nintendo games.
Use your Nintendo points.
You earn these every time you buy a new Nintendo game.
They're not worth much and they expire pretty quickly
but hey it's free money.
If you buy physical copies of your games and rarely return to them,
you might want to consider selling them
since Nintendo's prices rarely drop
their trade in values rarely do either
so even if it's a couple years old it
should still be worth around 20 dollars
beyond that there's not much else you
can do besides keep an eagle eye out for
coupons and discounts at major retailers
or you could stop playing Nintendo games
yeah we feel the same way
thanks for watching if you like this video be sure
to subscribe to our Channel where you
can learn more about Nintendo like in
this bite-sized look at the company's
surprisingly risque history
or in this video about why Nintendo made Luigi into
a punching bag