Capcom President Says ‘Game Prices Are Too Low’

In comments this past weekend, Capcom president Haruhiro Tsujimoto asserted that video game prices are too low, pointing to the massive increase in development costs and how game prices haven’t risen at the same rate. He suggested that increasing the price of games would be a “healthy option” for the industry.

It was only a year ago that the era of $70 video games really began, as numerous “AAA” releases—like Gotham Knights and God of War Ragnarök—began selling for $10 more than what players had come to expect. Now in 2023, around half of AAA games from large publishers have adopted the new $70 price point. Yet Capcom is one of the few publishers that’s abstained from raising prices thus far. It has continued to sell new games, like Street Fighter 6, at $60 instead of $70. But that might be changing.

According to a September 23 report from Nikkei, Tsujimoto spoke at the Tokyo Game Show about various topics. While speaking at the event, the president of Capcom reportedly explained that he felt the price of video games was “too low.”

“Development costs are about 100 times higher than during the Famicom era, but software prices have not gone up that much,” said Tsujimoto, referring to Nintendo’s massively successful 8-bit console from the 1980s. “There is also a need to raise wages. Considering the fact that wages are rising in the industry as a whole, I think raising unit prices is a healthy option for business.”

Tsujimoto further explained that even a recession or society’s low general confidence in the business world shouldn’t matter when it comes to game prices, saying that those factors have “little to do with the game industry” and that people still bought games even during the Lehman Brothers stock collapse in 2008.

“Just because there’s a recession doesn’t mean you won’t go to the movie theater or go to your favorite artist’s concert. High-quality games will continue to sell,” said Tsujimoto.

Video game prices will likely go up, even if gamers don’t like it

There’s no doubt that in 2023 it costs a lot more to make a video game than it did in 1983. Games are bigger and more complex than ever before, requiring more people, time, and resources to create. Even many “smaller” games are still vastly bigger and more complex than any game released in the ‘80s and ‘90s.

But games today are also jam-packed with always-online requirements, cosmetic stores, and paid “battle passes.” Sometimes the argument made is that these things are needed for publishers to make money and if prices on games were raised these microtransactions and other annoyances would go away. However, looking at how many $70 games still contain all of that stuff in 2023, I’m not so sure about that.

Regardless, the industry can’t sustain this pace forever. As games get bigger and bigger, failures become riskier, and trying something new becomes more unlikely. Something has to change. And given the choice, publishers will probably increase the price you pay for big games like the next Halo or Grand Theft Auto in the coming years, perhaps even past $70.

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Ransomware Group Responsible For Capcom Hack In 2020 Arrested

A hacker gang that breached various high-profile companies like computer component manufacturer ADATA and video game publisher Capcom within the last several years has been arrested by an international police force, according to law enforcement agency Europol.

Read More: Capcom Says Covid-19 Made Company Vulnerable To Ransomware Attack

An October 20 report by the government agency states that the ransomware group known as Ragnar Locker was brought to an end after 11 different countries came together to investigate and prosecute the hackers. The group is probably best known for taking responsibility for the November 2020 Capcom cyberattack that exposed hundreds of thousands of pieces of employee information, including names, emails, and passport details. It claimed to have stolen over 1TB of data; the publisher would later detail exactly what data was compromised, which included the personal and corporate information of current and former employees, financial details and sales reports, and developer documents. In total, the confidential data of roughly 390,000 people may have been exposed on the dark web thanks to the cyberattack.

But Ragnar Locker may be no more, following an elaborate, multi-country sting operation that took place between October 16 and 20 spanning Czechia, Latvia, Spain, Germany, the Netherlands, and more, during which the “key target” of the bunch was arrested in Paris and brought in front of the Paris Judicial Court. His Czechia home was searched and the gang’s infrastructure was seized across the globe. Meanwhile, five other suspects connected to the ransomware gang Ragnar Locker were also interviewed in Spain and Latvia.

An international police force, composed of 11 countries including Japan and the U.S., also took down Ragnar Locker’s ransomware—the malicious malware it uploads to get access to devices—and the website it used to leak stolen data.

“Prevention and security are improving, however ransomware operators continue to innovate and find new victims,” Edvardas Šileris, head of Europol’s European cybercrime center, said in the report. “Europol will play its role in supporting EU Member States as they target these groups, and each case is helping us improve our modes of investigation and our understanding of these groups. I hope this round of arrests sends a strong message to ransomware operators who think they can continue their attacks without consequence.”

According to Europol’s findings, Ragnar Locker isn’t just the name of the now-defunct group. It’s also the name of the ransomware the gang developed for its cyberattacks, including more recent ones against the Portuguese national carrier and an Israeli hospital. It used this malware to attack devices running Microsoft Windows, exploiting services like Remote Desktop Protocol to gain access to devices and data. So, while speculative, breaking into Windows PCs may have been how Ragnar Locker slipped through Capcom’s defense systems.

Kotaku reached out to Capcom and Europol for comment.

Read More: Sony Suffers Two Hacks In Four Months, Thousands Of Employees’ Info Exposed

Capcom isn’t the only video game company to have been breached by hackers in the last few years. Earlier this fall, a new ransomware group known as Ransomed.vc claimed to have broken into “all of Sony systems.” Sony was hacked this past May as well, with a different cyberattacker group claiming to have accessed info on some 6,791 current and former employees.