For years, PC gaming has been a very niche habit in Japan, which has allowed publishers to charge exorbitant prices for games. I remember going into a store about 6 years ago and they were selling games like Mirror’s Edge (at that time about 5 years old) for $79usd. But you could but it on steam for about $5.
When Steam introduced regional pricing, some publishers took the opportunity to ramp up their Steam pricing to retail levels, but i think because some other publishers and most indies didn’t it was mostly unsustainable for them to sell their $79 game next to a similar $19 game… so most of the prices slowly declined to being similar to US prices. (excluding Japanese publishers, who will never give up their price gouging ways).
Then, when stores like Origin launched, they had regional prices like $79 for Mirror’s Edge and so I ignored them. I did worry that if they beat Steam then that’d become the norm though.
But I guess the need to compete with Steam has also pushed Origin to reduce their prices to Steam levels these days.
Maybe Epic store pricing will follow the same path… The indie games on there are priced relatively in line with what I’d expect of Steam/Origin/Etc… Which does make the AAA publisher games look waay overpriced by comparison.
I also, in general, preferred it when everything was priced in USD because it tended to work out cheaper for me that regional pricing. But (excluding places like Epic), the difference is minimal these days.