The trade price of the Platinum range of PlayStation 2 games has been officially cut, Sony Computer Entertainment UK has confirmed, laying the ground for major discounts on budget titles this summer.
With immediate effect, the entire Platinum range will be available to retailers at around approximately a third less than previously, allowing stores to comfortably sell individual titles at UKP 14.99 or less.
Although Sony hasn't officially realigned the standard retail price (SRP), the new lower cost price for the range will allow retailers to offer some compelling offers. One senior retailer told out sister site Eurogamer.net this morning: "Whereas you used to see two for thirty pound offers, two for twenty will become the norm very soon. Individually, you'll see the range going for about UKP 14.99, and some stores may even decide to discount to UKP 9.99."
Sony Computer Entertainment UK's David Wilson confirmed the good news: "From this point onwards with new releases we have set a new trade price for Platinum. Consumers should be able to find our Platinum titles at a lower price."
But Wilson dismissed the notion that UKP 14.99 was the 'official' new SRP. "We haven't actually realigned the SRP," he asserted. "All we've done is to offer a better cost price to enable retailers to include our product in their campaigns - so this may lead to reduced prices on individual product or to more attractive offers, for example link save offers [like] two for X or three for X, etcetera."
The news is set to allow retailers to enjoy a bumper summer at a time when the supply of quality new releases has all but dried up - and consumers will be able to sample a huge range of titles at prices that won't break the bank.
Eclipse Games supremo Steven Ireland welcomed the news: "The new lower price point of Platinum product was overdue," and added that the pressure was on Nintendo and Microsoft to follow suit in lowering the price of their respective budget ranges.
"With UKP 29.99 pretty much the standard price for new releases since the end of last year, charging UKP 20 for a four year old title was a bit much. It will put some pressure on Microsoft and Nintendo to follow suit, but I don't think we will see it until the winter.
"What they both need to do first is to realise that their trade price of new titles needs to come down to reflect the selling price of UKP 29.99!" Ireland added.
The new Platinum price point is thought to be a worldwide initiative by Sony that will be rolled out in all territories. The new offers will be seen in stores "in the coming weeks," according to one high street source.