How much money do companies really make off a game sale?

#1bskiffingtonPosted 3/28/2013 5:17:26 PM
Not sure if this is the best place to ask this.

Basically, I'm wondering how that 39.99 price tag gets allocated. Does the majority go to the company? How much does the retailer get? In the case of a game like, for example, Battlefield where it's developed by a studio and then published on a, again for example, Sony console (as opposed to Nintendo published and on their own console) how much do the developers get and how much do the console owners make?

Always wondered why, does anyone have any idea?
#2DSplayer50Posted 3/28/2013 5:32:03 PM
I'm guessing most publishers look at the sales and they give so much to the developer. I would have to guess the publisher makes most of the money which is why most developers strive to publish their own games.
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#3twylight777Posted 3/28/2013 6:34:46 PM
publishers skimming the middle make the money

poor devs...
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#4abbyhitterPosted 3/28/2013 6:44:22 PM
Retailers buy the games from the publishers and then sell them at the suggested MSRP.

Retailers have the freedom to sale the games at whatever they want.

I'm sure that 3rd parties game developers get the majority of the profits. Then Nintendo gets some for being the publisher.
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#5zaingasmPosted 3/28/2013 7:02:09 PM
As for the retailer part of the sale, retailers don't get too much from a game.

I work at Kmart, and when we scan an item using our RMU's, it tells us the price we bought it, and the price we sell it. For example, the new Bioshock game that came out cost us $48.70, and we sell it for $60.00 right now. I'm sure other stores like Walmart and Best Buy get the games cheaper since they buy them in bigger bulks, but it can't be that much more of a profit.
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#6PStrifePosted 3/28/2013 7:07:10 PM
Developers get paid moneys during the process of making the game, if they are upper management they might be entitled to some bonus based on quarterly sales. That is how that works.

Otherwise once a publisher distributes units down the distribution chain, they get moneys back finally. Both these things are happening at once with successfull publishers, but if not enough money comes in post-distribution then developers get their pink slips handed within three weeks, since money does not grow on magical fairy trees.

Being a developer is a crappy stressfull job. I feel sorry that people even want to seriously get into such a balls industry, and then expect an easy living. Getting a cushy job in the industry takes decades now, not years. If you are not part of a successfull start-up you have years of financial problems ahead.
#7bskiffington(Topic Creator)Posted 3/29/2013 12:19:14 PM
zaingasm posted...
As for the retailer part of the sale, retailers don't get too much from a game.

I work at Kmart, and when we scan an item using our RMU's, it tells us the price we bought it, and the price we sell it. For example, the new Bioshock game that came out cost us $48.70, and we sell it for $60.00 right now. I'm sure other stores like Walmart and Best Buy get the games cheaper since they buy them in bigger bulks, but it can't be that much more of a profit.


This happens with more than just video games as well. It works in a way very similar to this in grocery stores as well. I would know, my job for over a year involved doing the orders.