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Terraria’s Retail Release Is a Perfect Example of Japan’s Crazy Game Pricing

by Ron Duwell | February 27, 2013February 27, 2013 8:30 pm PDT

terraria

We are all excited to see Terraria being ported to consoles. The indie hit has already sold two million digital copies through steam, and if Minecraft is any indication of the popularity of these world creation games on consoles, then you can expect that figure to jump quite substantially once it is released on PlayStation Network and Xbox Live this March 27th.

Japan is getting a special retail release of the game, however. Much like most games available through the PlayStation Network in Japan, a fully boxed retail version will be launching right alongside it with an inflated price reserved specially for physical distribution.

How much you ask? Terraria has not received a price tag for the console release in America yet, but the game is available for $9.99 on Steam. This price can dip as far as $2.50 during one of Steam’s holiday blowout sales. Based on the slightly increased price consoles tend to charge, my guess is between $10-$15 for the game digitally.

Not the case for Japan. Famitsu has a report stating the game will be released through the Japanese PSN for a whopping 3,300 yen! (roughly $35!!) The physical release goes even higher with a monstrous 4,179 yen (roughly $45). Don’t be afraid, because the physical release does come with a guide to creating all the required items because I guess Japan hasn’t caught up on Wikia technology yet.

Why the inflated price, I have no idea. Japan enjoys charging gamers an arm and a leg for even the cheapest of games, and then publishers sit back and scratch their heads over why a brilliant little gem like E.X. Troopers could fail so miserably. I’m sure the $77 price tag for a Nintendo 3DS game ($90 for the PS3 version) didn’t help its cause very much.

I remember when The Last Guy launched in Japan, and I saw the exact same price. 4,400 yen for a stupid little zombie game created through Google Maps

If Steam or importing games ever caught on in Japan, I’m sure it would be catastrophic to the publishers and their outlandish prices. Luckily for them, the Japanese population only buys games in their home language and have very little options to turn elsewhere. Foreign digital distribution channels are often on lockdown and region protection in even the Nintendo 3DS these days limits their choices.

Terraria will be launching on Xbox Live and PlayStation Network on March 27th in America.

Polygon

Ron Duwell

Ron has been living it up in Japan for the last decade, and he has no intention of leaving this technical wonderland any time soon. When he's not...

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