Most of the details surrounding the PlayStation 5 remain shrouded in mystery, but Sony has slowly, carefully been dropping hints over the past few months regarding what we can expect from its next-generation console.
We already know that the PlayStation 5 will be more powerful than any Sony console we’ve ever seen, and will boast 8K, ray tracing, and a solid-state drive (SSD) – basically a load of words that probably mean very little to the casual audience member, but will no doubt get dedicated gamers all hot under the collar.
As it turns out, “hardcore” gamers are exactly the audience Sony wants to target with the PlayStation 5. A new report published by the Wall Street Journal claims that Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida has described the console as a ‘niche product, aimed at serious players’.
The report goes on to suggest that the PS5 will make the most of its impressive specs by focusing on big budget, graphically intensive exclusives. This certainly makes sense, given the huge success of recent PS4 exclusives like Horizon Zero Dawn, Marvel’s Spider-Man, and God of War.
It also lines up with comments made last month by President and CEO of Sony’s PlayStation division Jim Ryan, who said that the company has absolutely no intentions of abandoning single-player games when the next-gen arrives.
As such, the plan seems to be to offer PS5 owners the chance to ‘play high-quality games available only on that platform.’ The company is also reportedly looking to strengthen its third party relations with other publishers, presumably in order to win more timed exclusive content.
Unfortunately, the Wall Street Journal report does go on to note that Sony won’t be committing quite so much on PS5. A quote in the article says that Sony doesn’t want to invest in titles also available on smartphones, which is…. odd, frankly.
I don’t know what indie games Sony has been looking at, but I’ve yet to see the likes of Celeste, Outer Wilds, What Remains of Edith Finch, or Gris on mobile devices. Still, if that’s what Sony wants to do – fair enough.
I think the majority of console owners who are into indie games are fully aware that Microsoft and Nintendo are the superior choices for playing smaller, lesser-known games, anyway.
Finally, Sony said it doesn’t just see Nintendo as a publisher who makes games for kids (which would be a gross underestimation, of course), and that Google Stadia isn’t really a threat (which is maybe fair enough? It’s too soon to say at this point).
It’ll be interesting to see if this “hardcore first” approach to marketing works for Sony. Given the success the PS4 has found by focusing on exclusives, I wouldn’t bet against it.
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Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.