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The GTA IV bundle box art  (Source: SCEE)
Sony announces PlayStation 3 packed with Grand Theft Auto IV

Along with Metal Gear Solid 4, Grand Theft Auto IV is one of the biggest titles yet for PlayStation 3 – the only difference with MGS4, of course, is that GTA IV isn’t a platform exclusive. But that’s not going to stop Sony from treating GTA IV as one of its very own, and creating a new system bundle around the highly-anticipated title.

Announced today by both Sony Computer Entertainment Europe and Australia is an official Grand Theft Auto IV bundle that will pack the game in along with the 40GB PlayStation 3 model. “We are delighted to offer the millions of PS3 and GTA fans the ultimate gaming package,” said David Reeves, president of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe.

Unfortunately for those hoping to get the latest DualShock 3 controller model with the new bundle, Sony indicated that the GTA IV bundle will include the outgoing SIXAXIS controller only. Such news may be the most disappointing for Australian gamers, who will have to purchase the DualShock 3 controller separately for a mindboggling AUD$99 (USD$92) when it releases this week. Gamers in Europe have yet to hear of an official launch date for their rumbling controllers.

The Grand Theft Auto IV PlayStation 3 bundle will retail in Europe at €439 (USD$696) and in Australia for AUD$749.95 (USD$715).

Gamers also considering paying the premium for the Grand Theft Auto IV Special Edition game package will want an early sneak-peek of the game from an unknown retailer.

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By unbaisedgamer on 4/23/2008 1:19:18 PM , Rating: 0
Aren't the 40gb versions only $399US? So you're paying a $300 premium for a copy of GTA?


RE: Expensive!
By Pipperox on 4/23/2008 1:55:11 PM , Rating: 5
No, in Europe we pay a premium on the console (and pretty much all electronic devices), it's not because of the bundle.
A 40GB PS3 here costs already 399€, a Wii 260€ etc.
We "enjoy" a virtual exchange parity with a currency that's worth 50% less...

RE: Expensive!
By oab on 4/23/2008 2:06:25 PM , Rating: 2
And yet ironically, the Canadian dollar has grown to parity and our prices dropped to match the US ones.

Figure that out.

RE: Expensive!
By mmntech on 4/23/2008 6:56:33 PM , Rating: 2
Got my 60gb for $450 that way, $100 off. However, the difference was that Canadians could simply take a short drive across the border and buy it for the lower price. Canadian retailers had to cut prices or else they'd loose more business. In Europe and Australia, people don't really have that option unless you turn to eBay. I think most would be too lazy to go through the hassle.

I know that Australians have always paid a lot for electronics but those costs are obscene. The 60gb was around $699 here when it first came out when the dollar was weak. However, that included full BC and the stuff Sony has since cut out.
I'm glad I got my DualShock 3 for $20. Best Buy Canada has them on sale for that provided you buy GT5 Prologue. No way I'd pay $90 for something that shakes a little. Aussies and Europeans are definitely being ripped off by retailers, even if you take away the VAT.

RE: Expensive!
By Pipperox on 4/24/2008 11:04:09 AM , Rating: 3
It's not just about being lazy.
First, if you buy something from the US, you may have to pay VAT and import taxes plus shipping costs, which reduce the convenience of the operation.
Also, you go exposing yourself to a lot of potential troubles, like having to resort to worldwide instead of local warranty, and the chances of something being dead on arrival are higher because of the overseas shipping.
Not to mention the longer shipping time, which can be lengthened if the good is stuck at the customs etc.
And in the past there was also the problem of different TV standards (PAL vs NTSC) even if this is disappearing now thanks to HDTV.

RE: Expensive!
By MrDiSante on 4/23/2008 8:31:40 PM , Rating: 2
Simple: I live in Toronto, Canada 150km (~100 miles) from the nearest American shopping mall. Cross the border. The prices are lower as well as the taxes. Cross the border back - pay maybe 25% of the price difference as duties.

If you're buying something big - congratulations you just saved a coupla hundred bucks. Canadian retailers can't afford that, so they lower the price just enough to make the hassle not worth it.

RE: Expensive!
By wordsworm on 4/23/2008 9:46:35 PM , Rating: 2
So... let me get this straight. People are going to drive 300 miles, pay about $35 for gas and 4 hours driving (based on 25mpg and great traffic conditions) to save maybe $30-$40 bucks on a console? I think it makes sense if you're making a booze/smoke run, but not just for a console.

RE: Expensive!
By xsilver on 4/23/2008 9:57:37 PM , Rating: 3
25% off a ps3 is not $30-$40. Plus who said you cant go across the border for more than just 1 ps3?

RE: Expensive!
By Flunk on 4/23/2008 2:07:43 PM , Rating: 2
You also have to remember that UK prices at least contain sales tax (VAT) in the price.

RE: Expensive!
By StevoLincolnite on 4/24/2008 2:44:16 AM , Rating: 2
And Australians have the 10% GST (Goods and Services Tax).

RE: Expensive!
By jajig on 4/24/2008 7:22:08 PM , Rating: 2
Thats right 10% not the 55% premium we pay.

What it comes down to is US consumers get better treatment. They're obviously doing something right over there and we are doing something wrong in Australia (Europe).

RE: Expensive!
By geddarkstorm on 4/23/08, Rating: 0
RE: Expensive!
By DeathSniper on 4/23/2008 2:44:15 PM , Rating: 3
This has nothing to do with how much Sony "thinks" the pound is worth.

RE: Expensive!
By B3an on 4/23/2008 3:08:55 PM , Rating: 3
No, it's because the overall yearly income for a average person in the UK is considerably higher than that of the average person in the US. And the same with a lot of other western European countries. So stuff naturally costs more as companies can afford to rip off people with higher prices, yet still sell as many units.

RE: Expensive!
By geddarkstorm on 4/23/2008 3:46:52 PM , Rating: 2
Ah, isn't economy fun?

RE: Expensive!
By jajig on 4/23/2008 4:01:19 PM , Rating: 2
The average yearly income for people in the US and Australia is about $40,000 ($US40k for the US and $AUS40k for Australia) so that can't be it either. Australia is also closer to China so it can't be transportation costs either.

I don't think Big Mac economics is accurate.

RE: Expensive!
By B3an on 4/24/2008 2:03:28 AM , Rating: 2
Well i've no idea about Aus. Seems they just get shafted, plain and simple. But what i said is true for most western Europe countries.

RE: Expensive!
By StevoLincolnite on 4/24/2008 2:46:28 AM , Rating: 2
Could it be because of Tax's and what not?
Australia has a 10% Tax on all Goods and Services, not to mention other taxes slapped onto all imports and exports, plus freight charges, added Mark-ups plus our population is lower which in turn would effect the whole Supply/Demand Issue.

RE: Expensive!
By steven975 on 4/23/2008 1:58:27 PM , Rating: 4
It's not that simple. Prices are set by Sony by market. The 40GB PS3 is considerably more than $399 USD in europe.

The sliding dollar has made other currencies more expensive relative to the dollar (and the dollar less relative to others), but Sony can't make up for that by pricing PS3s at $600 US...they tried that but no one bought. Europeans are used to the 400 euro price point and Americans accept the $400USD price point...that's about the fact of it. Just goes to show that currency values and purchasing power between them are only casually related.

RE: Expensive!
By Pipperox on 4/24/2008 11:09:54 AM , Rating: 2
I think you're spot on.
Part of the price difference is due to taxes, yes.
But a bigger part of it is just about Europeans being used to pay a certain nominal price on electronic goods, regardless of the actual exchange rate versus other currencies.
The nominal price has a big effect on people's mind and their buying decisions.
It is "thanks" to this mechanism that in countries such as Italy and Germany the prices of several goods sneakily doubled after the introduction of the € currency.
Like, how a pair of Levi's used to cost 120 DM before, which began 120 € later... except that 1€ = 2DM.

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