As you’ve heard at one point or another, Australia tends to get the muddy end of the stick when it comes to video games. If it’s not something about the absent R18+ classification rating or the extensive gap in release dates between other nations, it would have to be the common complaint over our overpriced video games.
Where newly released games in North America can price up to $59.99USD, the same games in Australia can often push up to and sometimes higher than $118AUD. Keep in mind that the Australian and U.S. dollars stand reasonably close on the old exchange rate graph - at the time of writing, $1USD matches the value of approximately $0.96AUD. So the question arises - why have Australians been letting retailers charge us so horrendously?
I guess I’m not really sure. We’re a lazy lot.
It’s only recently that the Australian media has begun to pick up on this scented trail. And with the advent of services dedicated to providing reasonably-priced video games to Australians, such as ozgameshop, the government appears to have also picked up on this injustice. The good news is, it seems as though our crazed politicians are finally going to get off their asses and do something about it! Huzzah!
Of course, the inquiry doesn’t just include video games, but all IT-based communications and technology products. The Australian Federal Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Stephen Conroy, announced the government’s plans, and that opinions from consumers and tech firms would be needed before legal action could be taken to reduce those hefty prices. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission also spoke up regarding the issue, saying that “over time, information technology will mean it will be harder and harder for particular service providers to maintain higher prices for products in Australia compared to overseas”.
If all goes to plan, Australians will finally be paying reasonable prices for their Nintendo games. It will take time before the legislation pulls through, but we’ll keep the lot of you Australian Nintendo-goers in the loop anyway.