An editorial by Japanese reporter Munechika Nishida quotes multiple sources as saying games for Sony’s upcoming PlayStation 3 console will end up costing between ¥8,800 and ¥9,800, or $75.57-84.15, in Japan. Japanese game prices are typically higher than in the U.S., with PlayStation 2 titles normally retailing for ¥6,800 ($58.39,) but the quoted price range nevertheless represents a 29-44% increase over the previous generation. If this price hike is carried over to the U.S., PS3 games might cost between $64.49 and $71.99. Most new Xbox 360 games sell for $59.99.
According to the editorial, the high prices stem from setbacks in Sony’s work on opening up the PlayStation 3 to amateur developers. Sony was reportedly planning to lower royalty fees for third-party studios if the PS3 became an open platform, but the aforementioned setbacks might have entrenched the company into a more traditional business model.
Update: A game pre-order page on Sony’s Sony Style U.S. online store lists $59.99 prices for seven upcoming PlayStation 3 titles, including Call of Duty 3 and Tony Hawk’s Project 8. The listings suggest PS3 game prices could be in line with their Xbox 360 counterparts in North America once the new Sony console comes out.