So I was looking at the Lord of the Rings living card game event and the price jumped out at me a bit. $30 for the session this year. This is up a lot. Ouch Fantasy Flight. Not a good look.
2017: $18 Attack on Dol Guldur
2018: $20 The Wizard's Quest
2019: $30 The Mines of Moria
Oh I dunno about the cost.
If you are willing to pay $100+ just to get in the door, what's an extra $30?
Just because the badge price goes up doesn't mean people will pay higher prices for event tickets.
To your point: While I'm very happy for you that money is not an option. For most people it is, and budgets become very important at Gen Con. I'm not just going to throw away an extra $10-$12 when I know they ran the same event last year for the reduced price. That can be a meal, game, upgrades, multiple events, etc.
Another example of event price increases:
BGG Hot Games Room
2018: $2 for 2 hours
2019: $6 for 2 hours.
For my game group of 3 that jumps $6 to $18 for two hours. We were wanting to spent lots of time there this year, but that will get costly too. Dang.
That's a hell of a jump, considering also it's supposed to be an environment that promotes new games in the hopes you will buy them. Even if BGG doesn't get a cut of the sales, that's a bit steep. Maybe GC jacked up the cost of the space, and BGG had to increase the cost to match?
If not enough of you do so, then the convention makes a bigger profit for their owners.
As I understand it, GenCon has been running at max occupancy for several years now.
If the demand for tickets routinely exceeds supply, then upping the ticket price is about the only way to increase profits.
At some point keeping the prices increasing will cut back on demand, but until that happens, it just makes sense to rake in the bucks that the customers are begging to give you.
It is not like GenCon has a competitor to consider.
Supply-Demand folks, I guess if enough people do not sign up for their events, then it will adjust. However, I have a feeling that demand is way out striping supply, so they will likely be just fine.
I have no issue with Gen Con making a profit, if indeed it does. It has not always been that way and if a convention is not profitable, then it will go away. I think we can all agree that we do not want that.
I do think that a 50% year over year increase is steep, however, I do not know their costs. Those of us who run games have expenses associated with those events and the base fee of $2 per 2 hours is just for Gen Con. I think that the players just need to decide if it is worth the cost.
"It is my understanding that extra $10 doesn't go to Gen Con, it goes to FFG."
Okay, same situation, different recipient.
I'd raise my prices a bunch too if my product was going like hotcakes.
If the consumer wants it so bad, charge them accordingly.
Once demand drops, then look at reducing prices.