Will Exposed PS3 Power Result In Even More Exclusives?
While the idea of third-party exclusive titles is nearly extinct this generation, it has become abundantly clear that games exclusive to the PlayStation 3 hold the edge in terms of overall quality and pushing the envelope; in gaining a new technical foothold in this era.
It has all happened quite recently, although early examples (Heavenly Sword, Warhawk, Uncharted: Drake's Fortune, etc.) have given us glimpses of what developers could do if they focused entirely on the PS3's ultra-competent hardware. However, it's no easy feat to produce a blockbuster exclusive that manages to be lucrative. First of all, you're eliminating...what, about 55-60% of potential sales by cutting out the Xbox 360? Secondly, these projects often suck up a tremendous amount of cash and it can be awfully risky for the designers. Thirdly and lastly, with the competition becoming stiffer and stiffer with every passing month (or so it seems, anyway), you really have to produce something pretty damn spectacular to make a big splash. Despite all these risks, though, the likes of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, inFamous, Killzone 2, and the spectacular Uncharted 2: Among Thieves have been extremely successful and have proved the PS3's unrivaled - and heretofore untapped - capability.
Furthermore, it's hardly a stretch to believe future exclusives like Gran Turismo 5, God of War III and Heavy Rain will be gigantic hits, and will likely act as more measuring sticks and benchmarks for the generation. Developers for the games I've listed here have often said they simply couldn't make such productions for other platforms (Naughty Dog has said Uncharted 2 would have to be "a very different game" on the 360). If you factor all this in, might developers, even third-party developers, look at this success and realize they can make their mark with the PS3? It's risky, yes, but look at the respect designers like Naughty Dog and Guerrilla get; look at how the critics and gamers everywhere receive their efforts. At the same time, we've seen multiple reports from developers who say the 360 has long since been maxed out, which means we've already seen just about everything that console is capable of. Gears of War 3 is a guaranteed bad-ass game, but I'll say without any reservation whatsoever that four of the five most impressive titles I've played this generation are PS3 exclusives. I doubt I'm the only one.
Obviously, exclusives seem to be great for every platform, and that's just logical. Give a developer time to focus entirely on any console, and it's more than likely the team will produce something better than if they were forced to make the game for multiple systems. But given the potential of the PS3, much of which has been clearly utilized in the past few years, it seems inevitable that more devs might want to take a shot at a PS3 exclusive. I dunno...just a train of thought followed through to what I'd like to think is a common sense conclusion.
11/26/2009 9:34:00 PM Ben Dutka