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PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan on PlayStation 5 award, launch titles, strategy



“We want to give the players clarity, we want to give them security,” Ryan said. “We will prove them in the future, so they know that the console they buy will be relevant in several years. It is a significant capital outlay and we want to make sure that people know that they are buying a genuine next generation console. “

This is in stark contrast to the Xbox series of consoles, S and X, which offer more nuanced differences (4K vs. 1440p resolution is an example) with an even larger price difference of $ 299 and $ 499, respectively. While the Xbox Series S becoming the cheapest next-generation gaming console, Microsoft has caught some heat for a confusing branding strategy.

Ryan also claims that the pricing of PlayStation 5 machines was decided “quite early this year”

; and that Sony always intended to offer a version of PlayStation 5 at the same price as 2013’s PlayStation 4. The coronavirus pandemic hit, however, new issues of distribution. The cancellation of the E3 event in June caused the entire industry to reconsider its plans.

So far, Ryan said Sony will have more PlayStation 5 devices ready for sale than they had PlayStation 4 devices in 2013. Approximately 2.1 million PlayStation 4 devices were sold worldwide two weeks after launching in 2013 by one million on the first day alone.

“For some time, in the early part of covid, the picture was far from clear,” Ryan said. “Just as the supply was unclear, would there be any market? Would anyone be allowed to go outside? Would there be shops open? This has been a year like no other. But all of this just reinforced our determination, and the path we set at the beginning of the year was definitely the right one. ”

Ryan said he has heard a lot of discussions about PlayStation’s more old-fashioned approach to the gaming industry, relying on his series of first-party developer studies to deliver exclusive titles on a generational basis.

“We are not saying it is perfect, but it is our approach. We like it, ”Ryan said. “We just want to be a little more nuanced.”

No one can argue for the success of this approach. PlayStation 4, with more than 112 million consoles sold in seven years, has had a fantastic year with exclusive titles such as “The Last of Us Part II”, “Ghost of Tsushima” and “Final Fantasy VII: Remake”, which begins three of the top five rankings for best-selling titles in 2020 so far.

“We have calmly but very consistently invested in these studies,” Ryan said. “We now have, humbly submitted, four or five of the best studios in the world.”

Although not mentioned in Sony’s official announcement, developers of certain games later confirmed that PS5 exclusives such as “Horizon: Forbidden West” and “Spider-Man: Miles Morales” are not exclusive at all. They are releasing both PS4 versions, which may annoy a few Sony fans who took the heart of Sony’s commitment to “next generation” development. The belief is that the development of games across generations stifles creativity and hampers the technological ambitions of the game, as it must cater to an audience with less powerful machines.

“No one should be disappointed,” Ryan said. “The PS5 versions of these games are built from the ground up to take advantage of the PS5 feature set, and we have an upgrade path for PS4 users to get the PS5 versions for free. It’s about people having choices. I am really very happy with the situation. ”

Ryan also said that of the thousands of games tested for PS4 backwards compatibility, “99 percent” can be played on the next console. Sony also announced a new service called the PS Plus Collection, which will offer 18 PS4 first-party titles for download to subscribers to the PlayStation online service. It’s a huge freebie for anyone playing their PlayStation online, and a great starting point for anyone new to Sony properties like “The Last of Us.”

Ryan said he expects up to four years for the PlayStation 4’s life expectancy, which makes sense given the console’s large installation base. PlayStation 2 had a lifespan of approx. 13 years, and developers continued to support it several years after the PlayStation 3 approached the Middle Ages.

“The PS4 community will continue to be incredibly important to us for three or four years,” Ryan said. “Many will switch to PS5, we hope that if we do our job well, but tens of thousands of millions will still be involved in PS4.”

Sony has also expressed growing interest in transferring games to the PC, which we saw earlier this year with the releases of “Death Stranding” and “Horizon: Zero Dawn.” Sony has also pushed its brands and characters to movies and TV shows with an “Uncharted” Tom Holland vehicle and “The Last of Us” HBO show in the works.

“The vision is that even though we highly respect PlayStation’s precedence as the primary resting place for the great gaming intellectual property we have, we kind of think it’s time to explore expanding IP,” Ryan said. “We think that both of these steps are completely logical and rational things for us to do. We should make that IP work a little harder as an acquisition tool for the PlayStation community. “


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