Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick has weighed in on the recent debate surrounding increased video game prices, noting that $70 reflects an increase in production costs as well as changes in in-game content over the years.
“The bottom line is that we haven’t seen a front-line price increase for nearly 15 years, and production costs have gone up 200 to 300 percent,” Zelnick told Protocol in a recent interview. “But more to the point since no one really cares what your production costs are, what consumers are able to do with the product has completely changed. We deliver a much, much bigger game for $60 or $70 than we delivered for $60 10 years ago.”
On the subject of microtransactions, Zelnick stressed that spending money is “completely optional” and that players get an “incredibly robust” experience even if they don’t spend more than what they pay for the base game.
Protocol asked Zelnick if Take-Two’s goal as a publisher is to avail every opportunity to make money, to which Zelnick said that although it doesn’t sound believable, the company’s goal isn’t to maximize revenues.
“Thankfully, things are really good with our revenue,” he continued. “But our goal is to provide the best entertainment experiences on earth. [The] mission of the company is to be the most creative, the most innovative and the most efficient entertainment company — not interactive entertainment company, entertainment company — on earth.”
Zelnick acknowledged that Take-Two has “a long way to go” before it gets there but that’s the company’s ultimate goal, and it hopes to achieve that by continuing to improve the quality of its products.