Sony Focusing On Functionality And First-Party Titles For PS3
As most industry followers are well aware, the third-party exclusive is dying out at a rapid rate, which means console manufacturers can no longer rely on them as "system sellers." In a recent Here New Brunswick interview with Sony Marketing and Public Relations Manager Mark Levitan, it's clear that Sony is focusing on other aspects to push their PlayStation 3.
Levitan starts off by saying "it's important to have balance, and we've always done that effectively." But at the same time, he said Sony couldn't turn towards blockbuster third-party exclusives to make the PS3 stand out in the crowd. Therefore, it's not a bad idea to remind gamers and consumers that Sony's first-party titles and franchises are second-to-none, and Blu-Ray remains a big deal in the market. Said Levitan:
"You have to have good internal development teams. We look at some of the franchises we have now like Gran Turismo, God of War, and Resistance - those are some amazing franchises that are among, in my opinion, the best in the industry. I think we have enough product that we develop ourselves that sets us apart."
Sony has been forced to cut their financial projections down to size in light of recent economic struggles, which is why we won't be seeing a PS3 price cut any time soon. However, Levitan believes the $399 price tag is still a great deal, and "certainly affordable." It's more about what the PS3 can offer you as an entire entertainment machine, which is a philosophy Sony has adopted since the launch of their next-gen console. Levitan added:
"Functionality is kind of hand in hand with price - you have to say to yourself, if you've bought an HDTV, 1080p resolution is important to you so maybe you want a Blu-ray player. If that's something you're considering, then obviously you're going to pick a PS3. You can go to any chain store and pick up a Blu-ray player but for an extra 100 bucks, you can get a PS3. You get something that not only plays the best games but you can surf the Internet with it, download all your pictures to it, or listen to music. I think that functionality will separate us from our competition."
And returning to exclusives for a moment, while much was made of Sony losing Final Fantasy XIII as a third-party exclusive earlier this year, the PS3's exclusive lineup, in our opinion, remains vastly superior to that of the Xbox 360. The PS3 already has Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, Warhawk, Heavenly Sword, Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction, Gran Turismo 5: Prologue, Wipeout HD, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Confrontation, and LittleBigPlanet, and it will soon have Resistance 2, MotorStorm: Pacific Rift, and Killzone 2. Down the road, there's Final Fantasy Versus XIII, Heavy Rain, Gran Turismo 5, Quantum Theory, God of War III, and more. Not bad, we say. But it's clear the third-party exclusive is falling by the wayside for everyone.
10/23/2008 Ben Dutka