In the early 80s the Commie 64 was targeted for kids. After you convinced your parents to spend $300-$400 on what they considered a toy, you then had to convince them to spend another $50-$60 for a piece of software.The best way to describe the result was 'fat chance'.
Hacking/copying was the only way most kids could get ANYTHING for the 64. I admit I was heavily into this. Not so much the hacking as the copying and distributing. This was the time when hackers were seen as the Robin Hoods of the early home computer age. Of course this has changed and hackers are seen in a different light now but where they came from hasn't: corporations want way too much money for the product they produce.
In the late 90s I worked a contract for Electronic Arts. During that time I could buy software that was going for $90 in the stores for $10 from the internal EA store. I know some of the $90 price is retail markup but not all.
At least EA puts out software that works unlike the MS business model of double-gouging: pay thru the nose for crap software then do it again when the 'upgrade' (corrections & fixes) are released.