Nintendo president Satoru Iwata believes that growing customer expectations are the main reason why it’s getting harder to $60 console games with each passing day.
Answering an investor’s question about Wii U’s lackluster sales, Iwata admitted that first and third party games aren’t wowing players like they used to do.
"We try to offer various kinds of software for a video game platform, and the games are improving steadily each year, but these improvements are becoming less noticeable," he explained. "In short, what one platform can offer will eventually become saturated. Every consumer will inevitably become tired of and get less excitement from the same type of entertainment."
"The development challenges for home console games selling for around $50-$60 have increased significantly," he added. "Around the time when I first wrote a program for a home console game 30 years ago, two developers, including me, completed it in only three months. Things have changed dramatically since then, and we therefore need to expand the range of software developers."
And the problem is only getting worse with the proliferation of cheap mobile games.
"Lowering software prices and a rise in the number of devices you can play games on without a dedicated gaming machine are gradually setting the bar higher for us to encourage our consumers to pay a certain sum of money for software," acknowledged Iwata.
"I believe the future of the video game industry depends on the number of games developers release that consumers consider to be fresh and worth paying for."