In the video game industry hardware sales are an extremely important factor in deciding which console a game should be developed for. Realizing this, companies like Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft have done their best to keep consoles in the hands of consumers and sell as many systems as possible each month.
And while some of the more common practices of selling consoles are already used--promotion of a software library, marketing, and pricing--a relatively new phenomenon has developed where console availability has dropped significantly and hardware sales stay at a relatively steady, yet inflated level.
In essence, hardware scarcity is running rampant and yet, demand for these devices has grown at an astounding rate. In fact, most experts in the field think 2008 could be the biggest year for gaming ever.
So what is it about a scarce product that makes us want it more? Does it somehow tell us that the device is far more valuable and worthwhile if it's not available? If so, does that line of thinking even make sense?
Sadly, I'm left wondering if we've entered a phase in the video game industry where scarcity is being used as a tool to increase demand, only to be followed by a flood of consoles to satisfy it.… Read more