There is no doubt, people love to hate EA. They have one of the worst images of all the gaming companies around, even though they’re trying to change that. Yet, with news like this coming out, it’s still a long time until anyone will trust them.
It starts, as many things do, on twitter:
FIFA 14 on PS4 is $59.99 on the US PlayStation Store. In the UK one it’s £62.99, which is $102.02. Go on EA, justify an increase of $42.03.
— Chris Scullion (@scully1888) November 25, 2013
This is a difference of $42 just for being on the "wrong" side of the Atlantic Ocean. No wonder our consoles and games are so much more expensive if we’re paying prices similar to that of the UK. In this particular instance, EA can’t even claim VAT, shipping or other taxes – this is via digital distribution.
Over on the official EA site, I found the game to be listed for a slightly more reasonable £54.99, which works out to $89. That’s still a difference of $30. On our local PSN, it’s R799 for the current gen version. Or you could order the game from Takealot and pay R689. These are some serious price differences between retail and digital, as well as where you choose to get your digital purchase.
Why is EA doing this? Is it just an arbitrary price level to adjust for exchange rates that they need to re-evaluate, or are they just so used to ripping people off that they thought no one would notice. It’s all well and good to come up with excuses when retail prices differ, but those some reasons ring hollow when applied to digital distribution, and even more so when a retail copy is cheaper than a digital version.
Don’t forget Gavin’s warnings about how digital distribution will end things for local mainstream gaming. Are these just the beginning signs of what is to come?