GameFly, the popular US game rental company, released some new stats this week, and Xbox 360 titles could be said to be completely dominating the charts, filling all the top spots.
The statistics cover all game requests, so the resulting list covers an awful lot of unreleased games as well, but here it is organized in easy-to-read glory:
- Chromehounds (360 exclusive)
- Prey (360/PC)
- Over G Fighters (360 exclusive)
- LotR: Battle for Middle Earth 2 (360 version)
- Dead Rising (360 exclusive)
- NCAA Football 2007 (multi)
- Hitman: Blood Money (multi)
- Naruto: Ultimate Ninja (PS2)
- Gears of War (360 exclusive)
- Call of Duty 3 (PC/next-gen)
Looking at the list, it sure says “360 exclusive” an awful lot, indicating a huge interest in Microsoft’s next-gen platform. Ben Kuchera at Ars Technica has another take on the figures though, suggesting that the Xbox 360 games may be sparking increased interest in rentals due to the relatively high price of games:
The more expensive games get, the more attractive it becomes to consumers to simply rent their games without having to worry about late-fees or only having a set amount of time to beat their games. For $20 a month you can play and beat as many games as the speed of the postal service will allow, or you could buy one third of one game. Which would you prefer?
With PS3 game prices expecting to surpass those for the 360, I’d surely consider buying some GameFly stocks right now, since Ben has a valid point obviously. Still, it makes you wonder what people expect: 15 years ago $150 wasn’t an exception for some console games, and $30 was the common price for home computer games. Taking 15 years of 4% inflation into account, that would be a whopping $270 and $54 respectively, for a game developed in about 2 years by teams of max 5 people. Yep, games like that are shipping for about $10 on XBLA these days, and if you look at the credits for a modern full price game you often see more than 100 names on the list. Current prices aren’t that ridiculous at all, especially if you also realize that game sales are compensating the losses made on next-gen console sales, allowing us to buy these power machines at a fraction of the price of a fully fledged gaming PC.
Still, can’t blame anyone for taking the easy way out and just renting for a few bucks per month. And while on it, can’t blame that many people for wanting to rent Chromehounds, because damn, that demo was no invitation for a $60 investment.