HomeGaming and ProductsPS5 Game Prices in India Show Sony Is Repeating Xbox's Costliest Mistake

PS5 Game Prices in India Show Sony Is Repeating Xbox’s Costliest Mistake


While Sony has had a strong PS5 launch and greater than anticipated demand, all is not well with its game prices. Reason being, in emerging markets like India, first-party exclusives cost Rs. 4,999 as opposed to the usual Rs. 3,999 that was maintained for its big budget, AAA tier releases like Spider-Man and God of War last generation.

Now, outside of one major exception, most games in India don’t sell at Rs. 4,999 or above. It has reached a point of being prohibitively expensive for many, and it’s not like Sony doesn’t know this. The PS5 launch line up of Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Demon’s Souls, and Sackboy A Big Adventure didn’t move as many units as the company would have liked.

What’s worse is, Sony-published games during the India launch window like Nioh Collection skipped the country, ostensibly for this reason meaning that Indian gamers miss out this early on in the PS5’s life-cycle.

More so when most third-party game publishers have maintained a Rs. 3,499 to Rs. 3,999 price on their own games. Even critical darling Returnal wasn’t spared with all India pre-order numbers in the low double digits, forcing some discounts even before the game was launched. It’s obvious that Rs. 4,999 is the breaking point for many a customer in India and the recent sales performance for Sony’s game is ample proof of this.

And while Sony seems abundantly aware of this problem, or at least its India team is, there’s been no change in pricing strategy for the country just yet. Possibly due to the fact that Sony India doesn’t really call the shots for the country.

Why Is Sony Not Making PS5 Games Cheaper in India?

Nonetheless there could be multiple reasons for this lack of movement on India pricing. For starters, reneging on its Rs. 4,999 aka $70 price for one region could result in a situation where cheaper games from India are re-exported to other markets — reducing supply for genuine customers this was meant for such as the UK.

At the moment the UK has a GBP 70 pricing that translates to roughly Rs. 7,200 — that’s usually how much you should be paying for a collector’s edition of a game. Pricing low in India could see stock from local retailer on store-shelves abroad. It’s a situation we’ve seen in the past with a host of PC games and even some old PS2 classics making their way out of India to other markets.

Sure, Sony could give India lower pricing digitally via the PlayStation Store as we have witnessed publishers do during the PS3 era, though this strategy didn’t really work at the time due to generous sharing policies.

If it were to return now, it could mean the use of anti-consumer tactics like restricting lower pricing on basis of IP address. However implementing this kind of a geo-lock may result in losing access to your games — something Sony has been all too keen of doing as we’ve recently seen.

Until Sony works out a solution, its current situation is not too dissimilar to Microsoft’s during the Xbox One’s busier years. In 2015 with Halo 5, Forza 6, and Rise of the Tomb Raider on the horizon, the company made a fatal error in thinking that Rs. 4,699 would be a fair price for customers to pay.

Not Just Games, It’s PS5 Restocks Too

Suffice to say, it didn’t work out, with pre-orders being dismal, even at a time when the company was done keeping its games and Xbox One hardware exclusive to Amazon India. And that’s before taking into account that Microsoft has been relatively consistent with Xbox Series X and S restocks across all retailers versus Sony’s somewhat preferential treatment to a few major stores.

That’s not to say Microsoft is faring much better with its first-party game prices right now. Gears Tactics for example, had a Rs. 5,899 price at retail that’s now 56 percent off on Amazon India. Although with Xbox Game Pass the company can say it’s lowering the entry barrier for access, though its long-term goals for preservation, much like Sony are yet to be ascertained.

Perhaps we’ll see Sony revamp its PS Now service or look at ways to maintain a fair price band the world over. However as far as India is concerned, it seems that the company is hell-bent on copying Microsoft’s worst decision in the country.


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