to coordinate a release across multiple cultural, logistical, and legal boundries.
there's a reason why it happens like it does, and it's not because the publishers want it that way.
Right. You undertake a multi-million project over the course of years and you can't sync logistics & legal? Come on, bullshit. The reason they release games on different dates now must be that they think they can make more money that way (money always is the reason).
Not quite. They do it this because they have always done it this way. It began as logistic and rights issues, then moved to cultural and legal, and finally to money.
There is now a far simpler and easier method that everyone can access. This plays hob with their business plan
wait, you seriously think that they'll make more money if they wait a few days to release it when it'll already be on the internet ready to pirate? huhwha?
Sure, why not? It's worked for many years in multiple industries.
Unfortunately the internet came along, and become really fast in a small amount of time.
If this was the case, do you not think they would release the games at the same time because they are loosing money?
Because this way is proven to work, duh. :P
Besides, you know there's that piracy thing. That's why they're losing money...
Releasing games at the same time means you have to have multiple versions already made and approved for different markets, and delivered to stores globally and held until the release date. Holding and completely producing like that costs way more, especially when you can use the money from one market to pay the people to change it for a second market (not to mention the ships and trucks to deliver it there!). Now a chunk of the problem is gone.
At the end of the day, I think the problem is that the internet has lowered the use of publishers. You needed someone to make copies of your product securely (whether printing or making the boxed game), and to organize sales/shipping and advertising - otherwise your product won't reach the customer, or the customer won't buy it because it is unknown.
Now, you can deliver a non physical product. No shipping. Advertising everyone can see, in a place where everyone looks. Sales are handled by an online store that creates secure copies. Why do you need the publisher anymore?
It strikes me that the smart publisher is the one who has already figured this out, and sells things openly using these stores, securing his/her position as the "go-to guy". At the moment that appears to be the indie developers, as they face the problem of publishers turning them away.
Besides, would you willingly take a demotion from executive editor to sales clerk?