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[Forbes Contributor Opinion] Utter PS5 Sales Dominance Is The Only Narrative That Matters To Sony Right Now

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3liteDragon

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Mar 3, 2020
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I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, even though Microsoft has had a strong start to this generation, full of big, splashy headlines like them buying Bethesda or adding this or that game to Xbox Game Pass, Sony has been quiet because…they can be. While Sony has not purchased any huge companies or come up with a real counter to Game Pass, what they have been doing is selling a truly massive amount of PS5s, a number that would be even larger were they not constantly supply limited.

Officially, the PS5 is the fastest selling console in US history, by both unit and dollar sales, according to a recent report from the NPD. While we don’t have exact global figures, it stands to reason it’s doing well in the rest of the world where PlayStation is usually picked over Xbox in most countries, with a few exceptions. It is impossible to understate the amount of goodwill Sony harvested from the PS4 generation, again, a relatively “quiet” run in any sense other than a console free of bells and whistles (and Kinects), and one that simply cranked out a large number of must-have first party games. So far, that seems to be the exact same plan this time around.

While Microsoft’s plan has changed from the launch of last generation, as I’ve said before, they’re in a position that requires them to tell their consumers to wait a long, long time for the fruits of their labor and recent purchases. Huge Bethesda games like Starfield and Elder Scrolls 6 don’t even have set release years. And outside of Halo Infinite, which has already been delayed a full year, larger titles like Fable, Avowed and Perfect Dark again, do not have release windows at all.

It also doesn’t help that Sony was yet again more or less able to undercut Xbox’s price. While the next-gen-but-not-really Series S is $300, the digital PS5 is $400 to the Xbox Series X’s $500 (with a disc-based PS5 costing $500). The same $100 gap is effectively present as it was last generation, in addition to Sony’s other built-in advantages heading into this gen. I agree that Sony has been the victim of “bad looks” over the past few months. The entire idea of being the one to raise game prices to $70 looks especially silly in the face of Game Pass, and that culminated in a very awkward situation where Game Pass poached Sony’s own MLB The Show, where it will be $70 on PS5 and “free” on Game Pass due to a sneaky Microsoft deal. Bad look.

But again, it’s one game here or there. Fundamentally Microsoft has launched the Series X without any meaningful exclusives, something that is unlikely to change until next fall with Halo Infinite, but by then, Sony will be spooling up big releases as well like Horizon Forbidden West.

Xbox certainly looks more competitive this generation, but if Sony appears complacent, it’s because they can afford to be. No amount of small PS5 feature annoyances or studios Microsoft has bought seems to be able to unsteady Sony and its decades-long investment in its own studios, and goodwill earned over four generations of consoles now. And if that narrative will change, it may take years for Microsoft’s current investments to bear fruit.
 

Dabaus

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Apr 23, 2018
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Sales don’t matter anymore. Profits don’t matter. It’s all about the long game. It’s all about having the best service and engagement numbers. It’s all about how many bullets are fired in a multiplayer match. It’s about connecting with people all over the world and downloading dlc with your friends for your favorite free to play multiplayer game.

It’s not about exclusives, or even getting excited about owning games. That’s an archaic thought process. It’s about playing AAA games on your cellphone while your waiting for an interview. It’s about streaming a fps multiplayer game on your work computer for an out of town’s business trip. You don’t even need to own your games anymore, it can be rented and taken off the store at a moment’s notice. You’ll own nothing and you’ll be happy.
 
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eyesabitdull

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May 10, 2020
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SONY hasn't said anything ... little shits making headlines for clicks.
U Mad Reaction GIF
 
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K' Dash

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They have it all to dominate yet again, let's see how they manage their pieces.

Microsoft is going all in and they have DEEP pockets.

Bring on the popcorn.
 
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arkhamguy123

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Aug 1, 2020
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Sales don’t matter anymore. Profits don’t matter. It’s all about the long game. It’s all about having the best service and engagement numbers. It’s all about how many bullets are fired in a multiplayer match. It’s about connecting with people all over the world and downloading dlc with your friends for your favorite free to play multiplayer game.

It’s not about exclusives, or even getting excited about owning games. That’s an archaic thought process. It’s about playing AAA games on your cellphone while your waiting for an interview. It’s about streaming a fps multiplayer game on your work computer for an out of town’s business trip. You don’t even need to own your games anymore, it can be rented and taken off the store at a moment’s notice. You’ll own nothing and you’ll be happy.
Pretentious. And also wrong. No offense meant here but Sony/Playstation and Nintendo are leading the industry with the opposite of all of that and hypothetical prognostications of the industry or mental acrobatics will not change that.
 
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cyber69

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Sep 21, 2018
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It's quite pathetic and ponies eat it up. I don't give ah fuck Sony allotted more PS5s for the NA market so they can win NPD numbers to make there shareholders happy? Sony truly is buckling at the knee's. All its going to take is a couple of big AAA flops and it's a wrap..

Agreed. What kind of business would a lot more units to a market with a larger share in profits? Arrogant Sony is back.
 
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Apr 5, 2021
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It's quite pathetic and ponies eat it up. I don't give ah fuck Sony allotted more PS5s for the NA market so they can win NPD numbers to make there shareholders happy? Sony truly is buckling at the knee's. All its going to take is a couple of big AAA flops and it's a wrap..

this is the definition of delusion right here. its freaking hilarious how upset some people seem to get at the mere mention of sales. just because microsoft stopped giving out any sales info, how dare sony and nintendo do it? how dare they be successful and top the charts? how dare sony ship as many systems as possible to meet demand?

are you fucking serious with this comment and you talk about being pathetic after a comment like that?
 
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SlimySnake

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Console business is a finnicky one. I dont think Sony is as safe as Paul is making them out to be. We have seen with the Wii and 360 that sales leaders do fuck up, and give way to other leaders. I dont know if Sony's silence means they are fucking up, but console wars are a marathon and whoever leads the first few years isnt guaranteed to finish on top.

Microsoft has a great opportunity here with star citizen and bethesda in general. that studios needs to be given all the money in the world so they can churn out star citizen, elder scrolls, and fallout on a 3 year cycle like cod games do nowadays. starting from this year. if ms goes another holiday season without a big game and as big as Halo is, its clearly not as big as it used to be, then we are looking at a big missed opportunity to really cut into sony's lead right at the start of the gen when the hardcore pick sides.

I think MS really needs to make a few big splashes here. Getting RE8 and BF6 on gamepass will be huge. It will just set this precedent that will stick in the minds of potential ps buyers for months. And thats where you want to be. Just inception those consumers until they cant take it anymore and drop $500 on a console they dont need.

Other than that, if sony does let kojima go to MS, bluepoint go to MS, and ends up taking 5-6 to years to make next gen games then we are looking at maybe 2 AAA games from them a year. maybe 1 if horizon gets delayed this year. then gow and horizon next year in 2022 and maybe ghost of tshushima 2 and tlou3 in 2023 if we are lucky. I dont know if thats gonna be enough to carry them for the latter half of the gen especially if MS's 24 first party studios start showing up with 4-5 games a year plus some big gamepass games from third parties. And thats the window MS should be aiming at to make a comeback like they did with the kinect and xbox slim in 2010 to 2013.
 
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