Japanese news site Impress Watch has suggested that the cost of Japanese PlayStation 3 titles will range from ¥8,800 ($75) to ¥9,800 ($84), an increase attributed to rising development costs.
The Random Tracking editorial
, from respected Japanese journalists Munechika Nishida and as translated by website IGN and others, quotes "multiple information sources" for the figures, which have not yet been announced by Sony Japan.
If true, the price increase would mark a significant increase from the average PlayStation 2 game price in Japan of ¥6,800 ($58), although the lower figure is on par with high profile PlayStation 2 releases, such as from the Dragon Quest
or Final Fantasy
Japanese game prices can vary considerably across even a single format, depending on the title. Higher profile games, such as the recent Nintendo DS title Final Fantasy III
, are often sold at an increased price. Similarly, Xbox 360 titles Dead Rising
and Lost Planet
will be priced at ¥8,379 ($72) when they are released - ¥1,000 to ¥2,000 ($9 to $17) more than usual. Tecmo's Dead or Alive Xtreme 2
will be sold at an even more excessive ¥9,240 ($79).
The Impress Watch article also has intriguing rumors of plans by Sony to lower royalty costs for independent developers to create games on the PlayStation 3 as an open system. According to the feature, these plans have since been shelved and Sony is attempting to move the focus away from the twin SKU (stock keeping unit) model originally announced for the PlayStation 3.
In his feature Nishida suggests that, in Japan at least, Sony will deemphasize the more expensive 60GB hard drive model in a change to its original business model for the format. The article appears to have been written after the recent announcement of a price cut
of the 20GB model in Japan.