I was happy when a GOOD PC game was $49.99. That was a fair price (most of the time). I got Crysis 1 for $49.99, on launch day, and simply due to the editor its probably my most played game EVER. Same with Rise of Nations. Same with Company of Heroes. CoH went on to release the OF expansion at $39.99 (I got it a year later, at 29.99), and that seemed fair. It didnt have as much content as the first, but it was still good. I got STALKER: Clear Sky for a complete steal of $24.99 only a month after release. I got Dragon Age: Origin for $20 only 2 months after release (insane sales). These were all WORTH IT.
Now BF3 is $59.99, and I've probably played 50 hours, and now im playing other stuff. SWTOR was $59.99 AND has a monthly fee. Admittedly I like the game a lot, but it should have been 49.99.
Since PC games have gone to 59.99, im finding that they arent as good. The games that I DO enjoy now are (ironically) the ones that are around $30-40, because they seem to have MORE content (STALKER CoP, Metro, etc.). One of my most played games of 2010-2011 was BF:BC2, and I got it for $20 via a Pax East sale promo-code thing. I just dont see how any game can justify the $60 price tag, considering it'll end up with DLC, only a few weeks / months after release.
What's terrible is that the FREE games actually end up being BETTER. Look at League of Legends. I haven't spent a single cent on that game, yet im level 25 with a few hundred matches played. Its a great game that a bunch of friends can get together on skype to play, and its just generally a lot of fun.
As for post-support / patches / DLC, I have to say its probably gone downhill with the more recent games. Back when games were 49.99, they seemed to be more polished. BF3 is good, but it uses (terrible) battlelog. In addition, there hasnt been a patch in months, or any word on new maps. It seems DEAD. I cant find a server with under 90 ping now. SWTOR is great but has literally NO END-GAME CONTENT, and the patches are weak at best (they patched in video options actually working). Crysis 2 came out with the WORST OPTIONS OF ALL TIME. It also came WITHOUT DX11, or an Editor.
Crysis 1 had a beta where the options were insane, there were custom configs everywhere. The demo came WITH an editor (and MORE configs) ONTOP of a MORE optimized engine. The final release ran even better, came with the editor ON THE DVD, had options for the suit voice, the crosshair and so on. Although there were only 3 patches, each was a few hundred MB (well, not 1.21 hotfix), fixed a lot of MAJOR issues, made the game run ever better, and so on. It also had NO DRM (or none that im aware of). Comparing it to Crysis 2 is a joke. No editor, no DX11, restricted options, DRM, basically killed the modding community, etc.
Whats worse is the older RTS titles like Rise of Nations. Back then, a game would come out so solid that patches were OPTIONAL. You could literally read the patch notes and decide if you wanted to download it, simply based upon weather or not you liked the BALANCE change log. And then an expansion pack would add a TON of new content - new game mechanics, EIGHT new factions (name an RTS that ships with that many? This was an X-pack), a bunch of new campaigns and so on. You could run that game in 1.0 with ZERO problems. In fact, in the YEARS since release, I have had exactly zero problems with it. Hell, the engine was so well made that despite it not supporting widescreen, you could edit the config to run at widescreen resolutions, and the UI would scale properly. Now games are all like "patch fixes massive crashing" or "patch fixes massive exploits" and so on.
Edited by doomlord52 - 1/8/12 at 9:15pm