November 30, 2022

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PC games are now more expensive in Norway

Steam is changing its recommended prices drastically.

NOK 849 for a PC game is a price level we've never seen before in Norway, even for the highest quality games.  $70 in the US so far means about 500 kroner here on the mountain, but that will change now.

Get ready for the price hike of games on Steam. Steam Valve owner has changed the recommended prices for the Norwegian market – and these changes could increase Norwegian prices by more than 50 percent.

The all-new Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II has grown up above Steam recommendation and now charges NOK 849 for the base game – higher than the launch price of NOK 499 for the previous game in the series.

Steam “recommendations” use the US market dollar prices for the game or add-on as a basis, then the recommended prices in all other markets are then prepared accordingly – based on exchange rates, among other things and purchasing power.

So far, these recommendations have often resulted in games being in some cases significantly cheaper in NOK than in US dollars, especially given the price the US dollar has recently become – but that seems to be changing now.

Here are some examples. Changes were first discovered SteamDB.

7.50 NOK 11.00 NOK 47 percent
37.00 NOK 55.49 NOK 50 percent
72.00 NOK 110.00 NOK 53 percent
145.00 NOK 220.00 NOK 52 percent
207.00 NOK 335.00 NOK 62 percent
279.00 NOK 445.00 NOK 59 percent
352.00 NOK 559.00 NOK 59 percent
412.00 NOK 670.00 NOK 63 percent
495.00 NOK 785.00 NOK 59 percent
569.00 NOK 895.00 NOK 57 percent

As you can see, the recommended rates are increasing by about 50-60 percent, with an increase from about NOK 7.50 to about NOK 11 per dollar – a little higher than today’s dollar exchange rate of about NOK 10.30-10.40. Norway is also one of the countries where prices are higher than others. In pounds and euros, prices rise roughly between five and 20 percent.

Rather than simply linking prices to exchange rates, our price proposal process delves into what players pay for goods and services. It includes variables such as purchasing power and consumer price indices, which help compare prices and costs more broadly, across different economic sectors, Steam writes in Pricing review for developers.

It must be said that Valve’s recommended prices for each market are an offer for game developers. They are not obligated to follow them, but the practice is that these are often considered standard prices in all markets since developers do not necessarily have local knowledge of every country in which they sell their games.

The aforementioned Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II costs $69.99, while the Norwegian price is set at 849 crowns – above Steam’s recommendation of 785 crowns, which is in stark contrast to the previous game in the series, which launched at 499 crowns.

For comparison, the relatively newly launched FIFA 23 costs the same 69.99 in the US, but in Norway, the price is currently 699 NOK. Persona 5 Royal launched on PC a couple of days ago and costs $59.99 in the US and 599 NOK in Norway.

Valve has also increased its prices. Half-Life: The Alyx costs $59.99 in the US and until recently it cost NOK 412 in Norway. The price is now set at NOK 670. The cost of Gate 2 was NOK 72, it is now set at NOK 110.

Baldur's Gate 3, which is still in so-called early access status, costs NOK 549 in Norway until further notice.  That's more than Steam's previously recommended price of $60 in the US for the game, but well below the new recommended price of NOK 670.

Part of the price increase is due to a price increase for the gaming industry in general recently (headlines have gone from $60 to $70 in the US, across console and PC), but for Norwegian customers, Valve’s increase is now on top.

A quick look at the site’s wishlist below on Steam might indicate that very few developers have adopted the new recommendations at this time. Part of that may be because Steam is currently in the process of selling, and as per Steam rules, the game cannot be shown until 28 days have passed after the price change.

Valve warns that the recommended prices will be adjusted in the future much more. Game prices tend to be the same across game stores, so it’s unlikely that the Valve change will also affect, say, Epic Games Store prices.

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