Apple’s App Store pricing has single handedly rocked the foundations of the traditional games market, but Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick says full-price $40 software could yet prevail on the platform.
"I don’t see why not," he told Forbes when asked if it’s possible to charge $40 for a tablet game. "Tablets are ubiquitous.
"And tablets are a great game platform. And it’s the right sized screen. And you use the tablet to have an engaging experience. So if all of that’s true, I don’t see why we wouldn’t be able to sell a robust product for the same price point.
"The reason the price point is currently lower for an iPhone app is it is used for five minutes, and not for a hundred hours.
"My take is that small screens will be used for a quick but interactive entertainment experience. Mid and large screes can be a robust and engaging entertainment experience. That’s how my kids play games. When they’re at home, they don’t really play games on their desktops or tablets. They play games on the projection TV."
However, Zelnick confessed that developing original full-scale titles for iOS is still an economic challenge. Porting existing titles is more feasible, he argues.
"We’ve tried a bunch a things. We tried China Town Wars for the iPhone, and we’re thrilled that we did it, and it was creatively successful," he added. "At the price point for which we can sell on the iPhone, it is not going to be economically meaningful.
"At the end of the day, we are interested in creating economic value, and what we intend to do is make something and sell it to millions and millions of people, and sell it at a high price. You don’t want to spend lots and lots of money to make something you are going to sell to a small amount of people at a low price."