As we are all aware, new hardware launches are often extremely expensive affairs. When you select your console of choice not only is it the hardware that your purchasing, but it's also a game and a couple of accessories to go with it. This of course equates to a fairly serious amount of money.
When you visit most retail stores on launch days, the retailer is often seen trying to sell their left over pre-orders of machines with game bundles. They of course do this so they can raise the price of the overall purchase to one that the consumer wasn’t originally thinking of paying. People are so generally caught up in the hype that surrounds a console launch, that if it is one of the last few units, they will purchase it for whatever price is necessary.
A few days ago I was browsing the online retailer Play.com website and I noticed that they have both the Playstation 3 and the Wii advertised. The Wii you can "register your interest", as most places are currently allowing interested consumers to do. The Playstation 3 on the otherhand you can now pre-order.
But there is a catch…
It appears online retailer Play.com are only allowing gamers to buy the Playstation 3 console as part of a package, as there are no 'solo' console prices available on the site. The price which you are expected to pay if you wish to own a Playstation 3 on launch day from Play will set you back a staggering £549.00. For your £549 pounds worth you will receive Formula One 2006, War-Hawk, and the karaoke game Singstar. Now if your like myself and have no interest in these games, then your stuck.
Your probably now thinking; 'Customers could purchase the console from somewhere else…'
That's very true, but I would imagine most retail stores will be following suit, and only allowing interested customers to purchase the machine as part of an extortionate bundle package. This in general helps raise the companys profits, whilst leaving gamers with a hole in their pockets, and titles that they weren't interested in playing.
As we can all see, Sony's upcoming Playstation 3 is bound to leave a serious dent in hardcore gamers pockets. The machine retails in the UK for the solo console price of £425.00. This of course is some serious cash compared to the other next generation consoles that will be available before the system launches November 17th. (Both the Xbox 360 which retails for £275, and the Nintendo Wii which is expected to retail for around £150).
As always the consumer will decide, so lets hope they vote with their brains rather than their wallets… As it's pretty obvious that for that price you could get both a Xbox 360 and a Wii, and add to that some quality titles.