Activision’s CEO, Eric Hirshberg, sat down with GamesIndustry International and talked about Xbox One’s price and about Call of Duty’s investment this year.
As a publisher, does the $499 price point on Xbox One concern you?
It’s up to them to win the value argument. If you do a focus group of a gazillion people and you show them two prices for two competitive products, 100 percent always prefer the lower price. I think from a first impression standpoint the win goes to Sony, at least as it relates to pricing. Microsoft is going to have to win the hearts and minds and convince people that the higher price point is worth it, and that it provides really meaningful capabilities that will be meaningful to consumers. And it’s a long game, so I am sure that’s what they intend on trying to do.
Activision CEO talked about the Wii U and said, “the Wii U is struggling – that’s not a secret, I don’t think there’s any other way to read the narrative right now – but they’re a really good company and they’ve got some incredible IP that has yet to come, that they honed for that platform.”
Hirshberg also went on to talk about investment in Call of Duty:
We don’t talk about our budgets but we’re developing for [many] different platforms with next-gen and current-gen and it’s a very complex development process. And then you have all the stakes that come with a new generation of hardware, the expectations, needing to set the gold standard for next-gen, win people over and make sure that our audience comes with us to the next generation. Look, it’s not for the faint of heart
The engagement has never been stronger in the length of the tail on Black Ops II and the level of engagement we’re seeing this long after launch, the success of the DLC and the season pass. Things are really good and we’ve got a really passionate player base that we think is the best in the world and we are never going to let them down.