An analyst from KeyBanc Capital Markets believes that the fan backlash to Electronic Arts’ decision to put on hold micro-transactions in Star Wars Battle Front II is an overreaction.
Investment expert Evan Wingren argued that one hour of gaming remains still the cheapest form of entertainment out there. So, fans should not be outraged when the publisher of their favorite game decides to lock their favorite characters behind a paywall.
Wingren thinks that publishers like EA and Activision Blizzard should not shy away from hiking prices, despite what core fans of a franchise say. He added that suspending micro-transactions is just a “transitory risk”.
Gamers aren’t overcharged, they’re undercharged (and we’re gamers),
the analyst said.
He thinks EA’s controversial money-making decision is a “perfect storm” for fans to overreact as it involved Reddit, EA, SWBF2, and some ‘purist’ tech journalists who don’t like the idea of microtransactions.
Sales Could Be Affected
EA’s stock plunged 10 percent in the wake of the scandal and other experts are concerned the controversy could bite deep into the holiday season’s sales.
Wingren acknowledged that the scandal would probably prevent the game from hitting the initial sales target of 13 million unit. He even issued a rough estimation of how much playing SWBF II costs a player in a year.
Wingren noted that for a $60 game and an extra $20 for microtransactions per month, 2.5 hours of gameplay per day would lead to a cost of 40 cents per hour after a year, which makes gaming one of the cheapest forms of entertainment.
Wingren underlined that pay TV costs 60 cents per hour, while movie rental and movies that are seen in theater cost 80 cents and $3 respectively per hour. This means game publishers “should probably raise prices,” KeyBanc Capital Markets said.
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