"I always prefer lower pricing, so I can't say I'm happy."
- Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot on the Wii U's $300 and $350 price points, in a GamesIndustry.biz interview
The launch of a new console is a time of uncertainty for video game publishers, as they find themselves starting, once again, from a hardware install base of zero. Convincing people to spend hundreds of dollars on new game hardware -- and buying your expensive new game -- is harder than ever, in today's world where games can be played on so many other platforms.
"I'm never happy when the machines are expensive," added Guillemot. "What we have to do there is remember that compared to an iPad, [Wii U] is cheap. With what it brings [to the gaming table] it's cheap. But I hope they'll be able to drop their price in time."
At least one industry prognosticator is betting the Wii U can have a stronger launch
than the original Wii (which debuted at $250), but whether or not Nintendo can maintain that momentum over the coming years is difficult to predict. The company has shown a willingness to drop hardware pricing early on
if sales are lagging -- maybe that can ease Guillemot's price tag anxiety.
In any case, Guillemot's reserved displeasure isn't as aggressive as other industry CEOs' console pricing criticisms. Remember when Activision boss Bobby Kotick not-so-subtly suggested his company might stop supporting
the PlayStation 3 back when it was $400?