Once in awhile a politician or an executive trips up and tells the truth. This time out, it’s THQ CEO Brian Farrell. Speaking to CNBC, Farrell tells Chris Morris that the price of videogames are too damn high – just like the rent in New York. The conversation began when Farrell was discussing the price of MX vs. ATV when it releases next year. Farrell pegged the price of that game at $40.
“I know investors worry about price points,” he says. “When we think about this business, we wonder if we can turn it on its head a bit. How many users can we capture? … The real key is expanding in the installed base.”
“We spent a lot of time in Asia watching that freemium model,” says Farrell “I think our markets [in the U.S.] are migrating that way, but you see it more in iPhone and iPad games right now. I think what we’re doing [with “MX vs. ATV”] shows us to be forward thinking. It’s a variation to that [freemium] theme.”
And while the game may not have a $60 price-point, Farrell sees a lot of extra money in the DLC the company has planned for it – like new vehicles.
Farrell calls this release an experiment, as the company finds new ways to make money outside of retail, and in some cases during the life of the product. SmackDown vs. RAW 2011 is a good example of that, offering those who want it a product lifetime subscription to deliver a steady stream of DLC.