Activision’s decision to give its Modern Warfare 2 Stimulus DLC a premium price point of 1200 Microsoft Points (£10.20) was met with outcry by much of the game’s fanbase – but one analyst thinks Activision should have charged even more for the download.
The Stimulus Pack, which includes five multiplayer maps for the Call of Duty title, was downloaded over 1m times in its first 24 hours and 2.5m times in its first week, netting Activision around £25m in the process.
However, its success proves that gamers would have been willing to pay more, according to EED’s design and research analyst Jesse Divnich.
“The accepted commercial success benchmark for DLC for a console game is 20 per cent of the install base,” Divnich told IGN. “The stimulus map pack was able to reach that benchmark in just a week, and should reach 30-35 per cent of Modern Warfare 2 owners purchasing the add-on through its lifetime.
“It is evident that 2.5m Xbox Live players felt that $15 was either just right or a good bargain and given the enormous quantity sold, I'd argue that Activision could have charged more and still obtain the same results.”
However, Divnich says it’s unlikely that Activision will hike the price for its next round of DLC.
“Now Modern Warfare 2 consumers are anchored with the calculation that five maps equal $15, so deviating from that will be difficult for future Modern Warfare 2 DLC content.
“However, Activision could employ some psychological tricks – maybe five new maps (no remakes) for $20? Or five maps and two skins for $20? Whatever the case, you can bet that DLC prices are going to rise to the point where pricing reaches its most optimum in relation to demand.”
Infinity Ward has previously defended the price point, claiming that “the five maps are definitely worth the investment”.