Sony Corp held they Investor Relations Day 2019 earlier today and revealed new information about the future of PlayStation and how the brand is performing. Here’s the rundown:
- PlayStation Network has over 96 million monthly active users
- 90% of all PS4’s have connected in the last 12 months (it wasn’t specified as to what this meant)
- PS4 users averaged 21 hours a week of usage in the 2018 Financial Year
- Average lifetime device spend is over $700
- Average launch year lifetime device spend is over $1600
- Sony still believes in console generations
- Backwards compatibility is part of next generation plans
- SIE want to improve relationships with third party developers and publishers
- Next Gen hardware will support 8K, 3D Audio, SSD, Ray Tracing and faster load times
- PS4 will continue to play a vital role over the next three years, AAA exclusives will still release on the PS4 and there’s still unannounced exclusives for the platform
- Streaming will be a vital part of the next generation plans
- PS Now has over 700,000 subscribers and over 170 publishers support the service. Sony want to expand it to other devices
- Both physical and digital sales are a key part for next gen
- Remote Play has over 5.6 million active users
- SIE are investing in their 13 current worldwide studios
- Plans to expand via acquisitions and expansion of current studios
- SIE want to develop games with post launch revenue streams
Details on their next generation hardware release date, pricing, country rollout plans and games will all be revealed at a later date. Sony also showcased the load time difference between the PlayStation 4 Pro and next gen hardware, the video was previously show by Mark Cerny in an interview with Wired. The PS4 Pro takes 8.10 seconds to load into Spider-Man whilst the next generation hardware does it in 0.83 seconds.
Sony Interactive Entertainment has announced that God of War has sold over 10 million copies since releasing on the PlayStation 4 last April, the game sold over 3 million copies within just 3 days of release. God of War also hit the 5 million milestone after just one month on the market meaning that the game sold another 5 million copies since May 2018.
Sony Interactive Entertainment has announced the establishment of PlayStation Productions, a new division that will be responsible for bringing their catalog of IP to film and television. The division will be based Culver City, California and will be led by Asad Qizilbash, Shawn Layden will oversee the project. Sony Pictures will assist PlayStation Productions with distribution but will have no say in the production of the content. The first set of projects are already underway but no details were revealed.
Here’s what Layden had to say:
“We’ve got 25 years of game development experience and that’s created 25 years of great games, franchises, and stories. We feel that now is a good time to look at other media opportunities across streaming or film or television to give our worlds life in another spectrum. We looked at what Marvel has done in taking the world of comic books and making it into the biggest thing in the film world. It would be a lofty goal to say we’re following in their footsteps, but certainly we’re taking inspiration from that. You can see just by watching older video game adaptations that the screenwriter or director didn’t understand that world or the gaming thing. The real challenge is, how do you take 80 hours of gameplay and make it into a movie? The answer is, you don’t. What you do is you take that ethos you write from there specifically for the film audience. You don’t try to retell the game in a movie.”
Here’s Qizilbash had to say:
“Instead of licensing our IP out to studios, we felt the better approach was for us to develop and produce for ourselves. One, because we’re more familiar, but also because we know what the PlayStation community loves. For the last year and half, two years, we’ve spent time trying to understand the industry, talking to writers, directors, producers. We talked to [film producer] Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Kevin Feige to really get an understanding of the industry.”
Bethesda’s Rage 2 has topped the UK boxed charts, ending Days Gone’s three week run at the top. Rage 2 however sold just a quarter of what the first game did and whilst digital game sales have risen drastically since 2011 it still doesn’t look promising. Digital sales are estimated to account for up to 50% of console software sales but that would still mean that the game only managed to sell around half as much as the first game. Rage 2 sold best on PS4 with around 57% of all sales coming on the platform, Xbox One accounted for 38% and 5% of physical sales were on PC.
The only other new entries to make the list is Focus Home Interactive’s A Plague’s Tale: Innocence which debuted in ninth place, due to it being another slow week for physical sales in the UK, and Sniper Elite V2 Remastered which opened in thirteenth place. Days Gone saw a sales drop of 38% and Mortal Kombat 11 saw a drop of 47%, concerning given that the Switch version only came out last week.
Here’s the top 10:
- Rage 2
- Days Gone
- FIFA 19
- Mortal Kombat 11
- Red Dead Redemption II
- Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Tom Clancy’s The Division 2
- A Plague’s Tale: Innocence
- New Super Mario Bros U
Ubisoft has announced that the console release of Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 has failed to meet their sales expectations for the game, citing a competitive market as the reason for this. Ubisoft still expect the game to continue growing over the course of its lifetime. The PC release of the game is tracking similarly to the first game, Ubisoft also revealed that sales on their Uplay storefront were up by over 10 times the first game, undoubtedly due to the game being excluded from Steam. Whilst sales expectations were not met, The Division 2 is currently holding it’s playerbase with the game hitting “record highs for engagement per player”. The Season Pass sales were also described as being strong.
Ubisoft has announced that Far Cry 5 is their best selling game of the generation, the game which is currently available on the PlayStation 4, PC and Xbox One was the seventh best selling game of 2018. The game was also supported well with three expansions and a sequel in Far Cry New Dawn.
Far Cry 5, which offers a great deal of single player content, managed to beat out all of Ubisoft’s online only titles such as The Crew, For Honor, Tom Clancy’s The Division 1 and 2, and Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege. The game also beat both Assassin’s Creed: Origins and Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey as well as Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands.
Square Enix has officially confirmed that Project Prelude Rune by Hideo Baba has been cancelled. The PlayStation 4 role-playing game was in development at the newly formed Studio Istolia which has also been shut down following the departure of Baba-san. The team behind the game have been relocated to other studios within Square Enix.
Hideo Baba, known for his work on the Tales of series, is the second high profile director to leave Square Enix in a short period of time. Hajime Tabata, director of Final Fantasy XV and head of the newly formed Luminous Productions, also left the company and DLC projects for the game were cancelled. Luminous Productions are also working on a unannounced AAA game but the fate of it remains unknown.