If you keep up with gaming news or news in general you’ll have noticed that Sony are being talked about. I am of course referring to the recent unveiling of their new console, the PlayStation 5. However, I was more interested in the games that they would be showcasing. As promised, they announced a number of new and exciting looking titles. At the same time, we got actual gameplay for a couple of them. This was refreshing compared to Microsoft’s CGI trailer approach earlier in the year.
The main thing I want to talk about was the exclusive games and timed exclusives. I’m not a fan of exclusive games. I mean, why would anyone be? They are anti-consumer. They force me or you to choose one system over another. I understand I could just buy every system but that would be expensive. I would much rather play every single game out there but I know that will never happen. Sony, Microsoft & Nintendo are 3 companies going up against one another. The best way they can attract people to their consoles is to have games on there that you can only play on their platform. I get why they exist but I still don’t like them.
Anyway, getting back to the recent PS5 unveiling. Something that stood out to be was the amount of 3rd party games that had been slapped with a “Timed console exclusive” disclaimer. We’ve seen this in the past but I’ve never seen so many. I found it rather amusing that Sony had the words “Console Exclusive” in huge letters. Only to have “Timed Exclusive” below in smaller letters. Sneaky Sony, very sneaky.
At the time of writing, these are the 3rd party video games that Sony have bought timed exclusivity for – Bugsnax, Deathloop, Ghostwire: Tokyo, Godfall, Goodbye Volcano High, JETT: The Far Shore, Kena: Bridge of Spirits, Little Devil Inside, Oddworld: Soulstorm, Porject Athia, Solar Ash & Stray. Yes, that’s 12 games. As a person who plays their games exclusively on an Xbox console, this is extremely annoying. Of course, the period of exclusivity isn’t stated. It could be a few weeks, months. However, it could even be years. Sony have literally paid these developers so that I cannot play these games when they release. Remember, these are 3rd party developed & published titles.
Remember when Microsoft pulled the same stunt with Rise of the Tomb Raider? I recall the enormous uproar from PlayStation players and gaming media as a whole. Why are we not seeing the same now? Why does Sony get a free pass?
Some have theorised that Sony pulled this stunt because in terms of actual exclusives, they didn’t have much to show. Another idea is that this is a reactionary decision by Sony due to Microsoft’s continued acquisition of Indie developers. Who knows what the truth is. All I know is that I’m getting tired of this shady practice. Sony did the same with the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, which was exclusive for a whole year. The same happened with the recent Final Fantasy VII Remake. Point being, they do this far too often without backlash.
Another debate worth having is whether or not timed exclusives are worthwhile? Is it something that makes a person jump ship?
What do you think of exclusives? Do they need to exist? Why is Sony receiving no backlash? Let me know.