Why Nintendo Games Almost Never Go on Sale

Why Nintendo Games Almost Never Go on Sale


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 Satoru Iwata. 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. Disney. 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 the parents 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

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54 thoughts on “Why Nintendo Games Almost Never Go on Sale”

  • Is Zelda that much money because I’m getting a Nintendo next year so don’t want to only have demos so please answer

  • I mean, it’s the reason I stopped buying Nintendo stuff so can’t be that good a tactic. A 2 year old, digital version of a remaster of a 5 year old game should not be £60 lol

  • I didn't stay to watch the video. Cost of cartridges is irrevelevent. They didn't lower prices even when their systems used discs. They are greedy, that's it.

  • Lol i got GoW, Horizon Zero Dawn, Witcher 3 and Bloodborne for 20$ each on PS4

    And Nintendo games are 60$ and no sales
    Thanks Nintendo i fucking love you

  • Well, you can just buy used ones, there are some second hand stores around, and the games usually work just fine if you don't trust the internets.

  • Well my dad has a NES and SNES and bought with his own money, but wants me to get switch lite not original, though I can afford original, and can't stand a wait

  • It is called Price Fixing, an illegal practice that Nintendo has been in trouble for. It has nothing to do with Cartridges. Thank you Polygon for this propaganda bullshit.

  • Until consumers keep buying Nintendo games costing 70€ or more, nothing will change. and it’s not just the games being overpriced, the hardware as well. This didn’t happen so much with the Wii U, hated by so many in the western press.

  • Most of this video is utter industry ass kissing BS! Memory cards are continuing to fall in price (so the cost different between blue ray disks and memory cards is continuing to narrow), they will put in a smaller gig cards wherever they can get away with it and still charge the same higher price that they would for the higher capacity cards. Not to mention physical releases such as collections in particular (looking at the new resident evil collection for example), are charged at higher prices than the equivalent other console versions and several of the games are digital, fucking, downloads, so they can get away with including a smaller sized card and can pull down the servers for the digital copies in like 10 years or so (there is no true statutory rights for the consumer in a digital world sadly). The whole point also about a history of quality to justify a higher price? Sony and Microsoft can both look to several franchises which have shown consistent quality for several decades now such as Gran Turismo and Halo so that point was utter bollocks 🙂 (also, this is coming from a Nintendo fan since 1990 who has owned every Nintendo handheld they've ever made so I am in no way anti – Nintendo, im just anti BS when I see it)

  • If Nintendo is the Disney of the video game industry, they should open a Nintendo theme park! I would travel to any place in the world to go to it.

  • For a long time in my household every one called "video games" Nintendo haha I don't think my early childhood was the only one like that

  • Other reason: consistently offering discounts impacts full-price sales. Yeah, I made that sound stupid, because of course Jimmy buying BoTW for a fiver six months out is going to mean there's a potential $55 down the drain if he was going to buy it at all without the sale. Steam provides a good example of this, with their frequent and drastic sales leaving more than a few people with the means and desire to play a game just waiting for it to drop from $60 to $20-30 in three months. They probably would've spent the $60, but they expect to save around half if they just wishlist it and wait. Of course the other side of that is that a $5 game might sell ten times as much as it would at $25, and those sales will attract people who never would've been interested in paying full price. That said, as someone benefitting from those sales, I have to say we'd probably see fewer reasonable arguments in favor of day-one DLC if publishers didn't move to punch themselves in the gut by turning their recent hit into a loss-leader at the drop of a hat.

  • My friend and I called the Switch the Breath Of The Wild machine, bc that's why we got it and that's what we play on it lol

  • I use other deals at stores to buy Nintendo games. At some stores, they'll offer in-store gift cards for buying certain products. $5 gift card for spending $X on toilet paper, house hold items, health care items, etc. If they are something that I need, I get them and get the gift cards in return.
    I managed to buy BotW for $30 using this method at Target.

  • Well, you can play Nintendo on an emulator for free. The fact that they refuse to discount their games, is motivation for the emulator community. They already emulated the Switch at 60fps.

  • because people in the 80's like me have $$$ and buy whatever we are after. we buy everything like heavy metal vinyls folk rock bootlegs rap cds music instruments  300gallon aquarium atari 2600 famcom super famcom nes snes genesis turbo grafx 16 turbo duo pce engine neO geO aes and cd ps1 ps2 ps3 ps4 retro multi systems sega cdx sega genesis Atari 5200 pandoras box of different models especially the fake pandoras box which is the game downloadable sticks toy collectibles like mask and transformers legion of power gi joe hand held ds nintendo wii Nintendo wii U  people from the80's erA is the best!

  • I will never buy a switch I owned a dream cast wont buy it again never owned a saturn never want to  sega master system seems questionable Panasonic 3do forget about it might buy a Atari 7800 and intellivision if I run out of things to buy.worst thing that can ever happen is you have nothing else to buy and christmas is not everyday with paid gifts coming to your mailbox anymore.

  • who's not buying generic painkillers? in fact who's not buying generic everything? the only notable differences i can find are in cereal (not all but some are legit different between brands)

  • well if you are a game addict you will buy it anyway now this is the hard part if you are smart you will buy the game with your wallet confused ?meaning you need to be a critic see if the game have diversity quality and originality now that my friends is the secret😎

  • Really they do , I bought super mario galaxy for 50% off on the eshop and there are many offers and free games for switch online so …..

  • They just sell good because they are good. Stop complaining, hating a company because there games sell so good to the point they don’t need a discount? Lol. Games only sell when they made what the devs wanted to make off of it and it stops selling well.

  • I wonder if the sales are really high for example mario odyssey. Over 2 years old and still almost fullprice tag. I own the ps4 and switch and i have ca. 20 ps4 games and for switch only botw. Nintendo=quality but price is annoying.

  • Disney might operate the same way and they sure are living on their reputation. I wonder how long that will work with their recent diarrhea.

  • Okay, games like Super Mario Odyssey or Zelda Breath of the Wild still worth this prices BUT why most of Nintendo 3DS games still have full price.