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PlayStation (Games) Sony The Almighty Buck

Japanese Stores Lowering PS3 Prices 189

Posted by Zonk
from the almost-have-to-at-some-point dept.
Kotaku is reporting that the 20GB PS3 is down by 20% the the Akihibara district of Tokyo. Reports from both here and in Japan would seem to indicate that PlayStation 3s are sitting on shelves, as gamers wait for price drops or new games. The Tokyo merchants are anxious, it seems, and ready to get their consoles out the door. From the article: "The 20GB version originally books at 49,980 yen (US $412), but is being offered for 39,980 yen ($329) in a sale ending February. The shop is knocking a flat 10,000 yen ($82) right now. Japanese bulletin board 2chan reports that this at other Don Quijotes as well. It's interesting to check out the PS3 vibe at 2chan; Reasons for not buying go from 'there are no games I want' to 'video stores don't rent Blu-ray movies.' Well, not yet that is."
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Japanese Stores Lowering PS3 Prices

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  • by fistfullast33l (819270) on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:10PM (#17726122) Homepage Journal
    Bidding on the 20GB on Ebay dropped off first as well - why would buy the 20GB when for $100 more you get a 60GB with the wireless, card readers, and the extra disk space? A lot of the early adopters probably had a PSP as well, which really doesn't talk to the 20GB at all. So all in all, while this is something to note, I doubt you'll see this in the US any time soon.
    • why would buy the 20GB when for $100 more you get a 60GB with the wireless, card readers, and the extra disk space?

      There's a number of people who plan to buy the PS3 for the sole reason that it's a cheap Blu-Ray player (I frequent an AV forum as well as this). For them, that extra $100 represents 3 BD movies.

      It also probably makes Sony happier than someone who gets the 60GB, Resistance and spends every day in multiplayer.
    • by CK2004PA (827615) on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:41PM (#17726616)
      Actually, the PS3 isn't selling in the US either. And its not because Sony can meet demand, its because demand isn't there. Sony released this news and MarketWatch carried it on 1/16 , Slashdot just hasn't carried it yet.
      http://www.vgcharts.org/news.php?id=58 [vgcharts.org]

      However, he continued, "The PlayStation brand doesn't appear to be helping the PS3. If NPD's numbers are correct, there are over 300K PS3s on retail shelves. That is not good for a console launch of only a million and it's not good for publishers with PS3 software."

      Would you like some nails for your coffin?
    • by Jesterboy (106813)
      Well, I believe it may have something to do with the ability to upgrade the HDD [gamersreports.com]; that $100 could easily buy you a 120GB hard drive, if you're willing to forego the features you mentioned.

      I'm not really sure what kind of purpose this would serve at the moment, but maybe people are hoping that the PS3 will soon be hacked like the PSP was...? ^_^
    • Bidding on the 20GB on Ebay dropped off first as well - why would buy the 20GB when for $100 more you get a 60GB with the wireless, card readers, and the extra disk space?

      I've seen some auctions on eBay for the 60GB end with the winning bid below retail. I saw one where the winning bid plus shipping was still below retail. It's not just the 20GB that is experience a big drop in demand.

      It took my local BestBuy a week for six of the 60GB units to sell last week.

    • Your argument has some small merit to it, but it ignores one fact. The 60GB PS3 has no MSRP in Japan, it sells for whatever a retailer thinks they can get away with. Therefore, there is no report of them lowering prices on 60GB PS3s, because there has been no consistent pricing on them to begin with. All retailers in Japan could have lowered the 60GB price by 25000 Yen, and no one would be able to say that for certain, without doing a full historical study on the pricing since launch.
  • Offer them up as free gifts for giving $1 to the Salvation Army. Look at a PS3 game with slight interest, get one free. Buy a Wii or XBox 360, get a PS3 for free.
  • by miyako (632510) <miyako&gmail,com> on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:15PM (#17726180) Homepage Journal
    I think that the price doesn't have quite as much to do with the (lack of) adoption of the PS3 as people seem to think. The biggest problem seems to be that the system doesn't have any friggen games worth a crap.
    I have a PS3, and I only have 3 games for it (Resistance: Fall of Man, Marvel Ultimate Alliance, Genji:Days of the Blade), and two of them are absolute and utter crap (Marvel Ultimate Alliance, Genji:Days of the Blade), and one of those isn't even an exclusive (Marvel Ultimate Alliance). Compared to the Wii, which has been getting great games at a fairly good clip (Zelda, Elebits, Wario Ware, Metal Slug Anthology, Super Monkey Ball) or the 360, which has had a year to get some good games.(Kameo, Oblivion, Dead Rising, Gears of War- all system sellers)
    I would like to see the PS3 do well (after spending that much money on it, I would say I have a vested interest) - but c'mon sony, not many people are going to buy these things just to be able to install Linux on it!
    • by Rycross (836649)
      Guess that Sony exec was wrong when he said people would buy them even without games.
      • by Megane (129182)

        When I failed to get a Wii this Sunday (I esentially bet on the wrong horse), I found someone who was interested in a PS3 without games. He worked for IBM and wanted something that would let him play around with the Cell processor.

        I think the problem is that he represents a very small part of the market, whereas Nintendo is bringing in new gamers with Wii Sports. Now if they could just make enough of them, maybe I could have one too.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by miyako (632510)
          There are people who are interested in the PS3 as a (relatively) cheap development platform. The primary reason that I got one was to be able to play around with the Cell processor (Of course, I also quite enjoy console games). I know a few other people who got one for the same reason.
          The problem is, as you said, it's a miniscule fraction of the market. These people don't help sony out at all (they take a loss on the system, and never recoup it in selling games/bluray movies) and it doesn't help the gam
    • to be fair, the 360 didn't really have much to write home about 3 months after launch and is still performing worse than the original Xbox in japan. IIRC a good chunk of the launch games were derided for looking exactly like Xbox games.

      Even the titles you listed for the Wii aren't really that impressive- Zelda is a gamecube port of a series that doesn't sell very well in japan (it's currently sold only about 300k copies), metal slug is a collection of older games ported from the Neo Geo, Super Monkey ball

      • by miyako (632510) <miyako&gmail,com> on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:44PM (#17726654) Homepage Journal
        The thing is, the ps3 isn't competing against what the 360 had 3 months after its launch, it's competing against what the 360 has available right now.
        Maybe the games I listed aren't doing great in japan, but the Wii seems to be pretty popular in japan as well as in the US, so something must have people there buying it (they have better virtual console choices than the US, so maybe that's it)
        The PS3 has an anoerxic game library, and all of the big name titles that were system sellers for the PS2 are a year or two away, or no longer exclusive (Gamespot has rumors that MGS4 will be out on the 360).
        Of course, early adopters are often willing to buy a console on the promise of what will eventually be available (I did)- but there is a large secondary market to consider. There are a lot of people who like games, and are interesting in getting a next gen system, but will make decisions based largely on their experiences playing the systems at their friends houses. When the PS3 doesn't have any games to offer up those experiences, then people will focus on the 360 or wii, which they have played good games on.
        • by PeelBoy (34769)
          I doubt MGS4 will come out for the 360. A year or so ago the I remember the creator (forget his name) saying something about wanting to bring MG (not sure if he was talking about a new MG game, a port or what) to the Wii but it won't or might not happen because of contractual reasons.

          I could be wrong though and I'm not sure if it covers future versions or spin offs but I'm pretty sure that MGS4 is bound by contract and will remain a Sony exclusive unless they give the go ahead or he pulls something off or s
          • Yesterday 1up quoted Kojima [1up.com] in an interview saying he was looking at 360 and PC development.

            Metal Gear Solid was PC and PS1. MGS2 was Xbox, PC and PS2. The only reason that MGS3 ended up an exclusive was that by that stage the writing was on the wall, and there was really no reason to go multi-platform given the massive install base the PS2 had.

            MGS4 will end up being a 6-month PS3 exclusive. Why release for a single system with (by then) a 5-6 million install base when you could release for both of the high
      • Regarding Zelda, 352k (using vgcharts.org) is 28% of all Japanese Wii owners. That seems rather respectable.

        However, you're also neglecting that there is a Gamecube version which many players (especially die-hard lefties) may have opted for. This is not listed on vgcharts, and I could not find a figure elsewhere.
    • Yes the Wii has a steady stream of games coming out, although I would prefer to see more epic games along the lines of Zelda, but it has its merits, regarding new games and especially wii only exclusives, or best played on a wii (rayman raving rabbits for instance probably works only on a wii really well), guess it pays off that Wii games are known territory, cheap to produce and leave interesting experimental fields to the devs. While many of them currently try to figure out to get anything up and running
  • Wow, that's how much I paid for my Wii in Europe.
  • by Animats (122034) on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:22PM (#17726294) Homepage

    Yes, check out eBay prices. The 20GB units are now selling below retail.

    Remember, price is not what the seller is asking. The price is what a willing buyer will pay a willing seller. When it won't sell, the asking price isn't a real price. eBay makes this so obvious, but it's also true in retail; if there's a huge stack of unsold stuff, the price is going to drop.

  • wow (Score:3, Insightful)

    by joe 155 (937621) on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:45PM (#17726688) Journal
    $329 is cheap, that is pretty much the same as what a wii costs here (in the UK a wii is £179), if only I could get one imported here at that price it might be a cheap way of getting a blu-ray player (and of screwing quite a bit of money out of sony in the process) but they don't seem to like the idea of consumers being able to use the free market to their advantage.

    As I understand it though Sony must be losing about $100-200 on each one of these... I think that they might have made some mistakes
  • Japanese bulletin board 2chan reports that this at other Don Quijotes as well.
    The fictional character who attacks windmills now owns a number of Japanese video game stores?

    I'll be damned, that guy gets around. Maybe he heard about Godzilla...
  • 2ch, not 2chan (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Mprx (82435) on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:49PM (#17726738)
    The article references http://2-ch.net/ [2-ch.net] but calls it http://2chan.net/ [2chan.net]. 2ch is text only and more popular, 2chan has images. Often people say 2chan when they mean 2ch, but they are two different websites.
  • by EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @01:51PM (#17726766)
    I wouldn't be completely surprised if US retailers follow suit in order to get rid of inventory. A relative of mine is an electronics dept Mgr. at a Target. Apparently, they'll often get a shipment of 8-12 PS3's in, and that will satisfy the demand for 2-3 weeks. Also, he's told me that clueless people are STILL coming in, seeing the stock, and buying them to put on e-bay. Of course, that's probably why they get at least one unit returned every week.
  • Eventually, I plan to buy a Wii, but I won't buy a PS3. Even with a discount, they are too expensive.
  • Exclusive Titles (Score:4, Interesting)

    by the dark hero (971268) <adriatic_hero@ho ... il.com minus bsd> on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @02:07PM (#17727036) Homepage
    Hopefully they drop the price on the PS3 in the U.S. by the time some must-have exclusive titles come out(FFXIII) because im going to go for the cheapest PS3 possible when that happens, but only if they have a decent library. I would sure hate to miss out on the next Shaddow of the Colossus.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by jZnat (793348) *
      Combine that with actual decent support for PS2 and PS1 games, and I think I'll end up getting one. Of course, the price needs to be a bit more competitive with the 360. I don't particularly care about getting a Blu-ray player (wouldn't buy movies in that format anyways; too expensive), so the reasons for getting one are really to replace my non-existent PS2 (can't play Guitar Hero anymore ;_;) and for a system that should at least be getting good games (but still hasn't).

      I usually end up owning all the c
      • by justchris (802302)
        It's currently not possible to play Guitar Hero on the PS3. Hopefully they will make a Guitar that uses Bluetooth so that you can do so, but until then, well, you could play it, but you'd have to use a Sixaxis, and that control scheme throws me all off.
  • they had some #$@# games worth playing on the thing. I saw a mountainous stack of PS3s the other day at Best Buy. I thought of the $600 price tag, then I thought of Resistance:Fall of Man and then I couldn't think of anything else but $600. What kinda nut is going to pay that and not have anything to play that is worth a #$%@ If they would have just got half a dozen or so exclusive titles that all were of a calibre equal to Resistance:FOM or better they wouldn't have to drop the price cause the games would
    • by Thraxen (455388)
      People always make that point, but it's not really a very sound argument. You aren't paying $650 just for RFoM. It's not like RFoM is the only game you will have to play for the entire life of the system. You'll get the next MGS, God of War, Rachet & Clank, FF, etc, etc, etc, etc... that everyone who waits will get to play. Early adopters just pay more to have the system earlier. And if you have an HDTV you also have a quality Blu-Ray player to use.
      • Agreed. Unless you have some mystic power that tells you the only game you will ever buy for the PS3 is RFoM it's a somewhat flawed argument to say "$600 just for RFoM". Other games will come, and most people will expand their library.

        However, I think the unspoken implication is "$600 just for RFoM right now". Maybe I'm giving the GP too much credit. Still, if RFoM is the only game you'd play on a $600 PS3 were you to buy one now, is this worth not waiting for new games and/or a price drop?
      • by ProppaT (557551)
        Yeah, well, I paid $300 to play Twilight Princess. Anything else that comes out (and I'm sure there will be tons of things that come out) will make that initial investment even better. The key is, $300 wasn't too much for me to put down at once for 2 fun games and the promise of multiple other titles I'll have fun with down the road. $650 is a VERY LARGE initial investment. That's putting $650 down right now for one game, with promises of more games to come in the future. I could have much more fun spe
      • by PeelBoy (34769)
        Sure so why not wait until those games come out and hope that the price of the system has dropped? Why spend that money now for only 1 game especially when you have tons of other games you're playing and maybe can't afford the $600.

        Also $600 isn't accurate anyway because who honestly just walks out of the store with the system and a single game? Even then you'd probably be over $700 (assuming you get the 60 gig version) plus better cables and maybe another controller or two maybe some cables to charge the b
    • by justchris (802302)
      Well, to be fair, the Playstation brand has never had a lot of really good games at launch. Because Sony depends so heavily on 3rd parties, they're at the mercy of 3rd party dev schedules.

      Microsoft handled this problem by buying some developers and pushing stuff out the door early on.

      Nintendo is one of the most prolific game development firms in the world, and they had a lot of content prepared for launch, so they're always going to look better out of the gate than the competition.

      This bad press i
  • I have read many sources saying consoles sell for like $1 over cost to the retailer. Wouldn't they be losing a lot of money doing this?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Crasty (1019258)
      As an ex-retailer, although not part of a big chain, I can tell you that when something you bought for say, 200 dollars is not selling well and there is very little demand for it, you are very tempted to sell it for $150, even if it's retail price is over $200. At some point, you realize profit is not and option, and it becomes a matter of mitigating loss.

      The "new sales" video game market is not a good place to retailers, whether people want to admit it or not. Spending $44-46 on a game to sell it at $
      • by kinglink (195330)
        And thus the reason why retailers now have the option of returning the games to distributors.

        See Atari 2600's ET for past issues with these rules.
  • by EXTomar (78739) on Tuesday January 23, 2007 @03:20PM (#17727920)
    (This is something Microsoft should do as well.) They can cram as much crap into the "high end package" and charge whatever they want for it. The problem Microsoft and Sony face is that their "Basic Package", which is supposed to be the bargain version, really isn't a bargain at all. Both of these consoles have a "Basic Package" that is too expensive and is reflected in their sluggish sales. Even though Microsoft can claim some sort of victory in shoving 10 million units out the door, neither of these are even close to where the PS2 and XBox where a year later. I see Sony heading down this same sluggish sales path unless the drop the price of their supposedly cheaper unit soon.

    This is all a reflection of how horribly expensive console gaming has gotten. We might as well be spending our money on gaming computers instead.
    • Problem is, at the current rate, Nintendo will have sold around 10 mio Wiis end of may. The situation over here is insane, I have yet to spot a single Wii in one of the stores here in central europe since launch day. At launch day all wiis over here were sold out within minutes, and since then I have not spotted anything, but at least the situation has gone back to normal regarding the wiimotes and nunchucks, they can be obtained now almost everywhere (that has happend the last two weeks) The situation is e
      • by Svenheim (723925)
        Hey, we Norwegians make British salaries look like teenage allowances.
        • Yes but the prices you oil guys have and also the taxes make Britain look like a tax paradise, it all evens out at the end ;-)
    • by PeelBoy (34769)
      I agree but I have to say I do like Sony's basic package better than Microsofts.

      It's a package that you can live with. You can buy it and it'll work. We don't all need wifi or HDMI.

      The 360 package isn't like that. There is no harddrive at all so you can't save games unless you buy a $40 save cart.

      Seriously what's the point? It's completely worthless without spending $340 so why not spend $60 more and get a 20 gig drive?

      At the very least I give Sony props for not doing it that way.
  • And to think I've been told, again and again, that the PS3 will sell "no matter what" in Japan, because it's made by Sony! It couldn't have been that those people were all talking out of their asses, could it?
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by meringuoid (568297)
      And to think I've been told, again and again, that the PS3 will sell "no matter what" in Japan, because it's made by Sony!

      You know those comparison pics we keep seeing, of Wii boxes marked 'totally sold out' and PS3 boxes marked 'Please for the love of God take these things off our hands'? Where are the Xbox 360 boxes?

      They're not there. Nobody in Japan wants them at all.

      According to this article [joystiq.com] the PS3 has already sold more units in Japan than has the Xbox 360. Even though it's only been out a month.

      • by Goaway (82658)
        The whole Wii thing was unexpected

        No, this was well into the period when the Wii hype was at its highest.
  • There's still some hope here for the PS3. Afterall, even if the retailer takes a loss to clear the shelves of consoles for now, those buyers will likely be back to buy games once more good games come out. In the meantime, valuable shelf space is freed up for other products, like Wiis maybe.
  • It saves me reading the whole thing, I can just read:

    money, playstation, sony, haha (tagging beta)
  • "Japanese bulletin board 2chan reports that this at other Don Quijotes as well"

    OK, yeah, it's technically spelled correctly, but that's just... wrong. It's like saying "Mejico" or "Tejas."

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