Sony arguably stole the next-generation lead earlier this week, unveiling the release date and price to a thirsty audience willing to jump onto a new console the second it arrives later this year.
PS5 has all the potential to be another juggernaut for Sony, yet many of the console’s specifics were pushed to the aftermath of this week’s showcase. Intimate pricing details, cross-gen capabilities and other features, I found to be a mixture of compelling and concerning, swarmed the internet moments after the show wrapped.
It felt like Sony wanted to control the messaging in an understandable way, but was holding back a number of announcements that might have tempted reluctant players to pick up the console instead of holding back for fear of a lack of games or compatibility. Now many of those fears have been addressed, but the average joe certainly wouldn’t know it.
We’ve compiled some of the key takeaways from this week’s PS5 Showcase which weren’t pushed to the forefront and are definitely worth knowing about, especially for those who have already put down a pre-order for the next gen console.
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Sony has an ambitious cross-gen strategy for PS5
Following the latest reveal for Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Sony confirmed that the superhero adventure and Horizon: Forbidden West would both be released on PS4, albeit with less impressive visuals and gameplay features compared to their next-gen counterparts.
But they will be acting as cross-generational releases, with free upgrades being dished out to those who happen to purchase the games on PS4 and upgrade to the new platform moving forward. This way, Sony is embracing an audience of 100 million console owners and letting them know that you don’t need to upgrade immediately, even if they’d rather you did.
Its omission from the showcase is likely to prevent you from questioning why you should play these games on PS5 when they’re coming to existing hardware you already own. It’s an understandable strategy, but one that feels a little cheeky when quietly pushed onto official channels after we’ve already committed to a pre-order.
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Pricing is increasing across the board
The widespread raising of pricing in the games market was inevitable, but it was unclear who would be willing to push the boat out and make such an increase the norm. Well, the arrival of PlayStation 5 will see AAA releases moving to £69.99 at retail, which is a bitter pill to swallow even if it will result in recouped development costs later down the line.
Accessories such as the DualSense controller (£59.99), PlayStation Camera (£49.99) and Pulse Headset (£89.99) will also cost more than their previous generation counterparts, but given the technology that is powering them such a shift is easy to swallow. It will be interesting to see how third-party retailers and digital means of purchase approach this new pricing benchmark, and whether consumers will be willing to take it without a fight.
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All of the games coming at launch
The full list of first-party PS5 launch games wasn’t confirmed during the showcase itself beyond a few loose release windows, but we’ve included the full list of titles below:
- Astro’s Playroom
- Demon’s Souls
- Destruction All Stars
- Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales
- Marvel’s Spider-Man: Mile Morales Ultimate Edition
- Sackboy A Big Adventure
There will also likely be third-party games available at launch too, with Assassins’ Creed Valhalla and Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War also expected.
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Demon’s Souls and Final Fantasy 16 aren’t coming to PC
During the showcase itself, it was made clear that while Final Fantasy 16 and Demon’s Souls would be console exclusives, both games would also be coming to PC. Well, apparently this wasn’t true, with Sony attributing the messaging to “human error” before uploading fresh trailers to all of its channels in the wake of the announcement.
It was a bit embarrassing, a colossal mistake to be made for your console’s biggest event yet. I honestly think both of the aforementioned games will be coming to PC eventually, but perhaps the veil was lifted earlier than Sony would have liked. These are two absolutely massive blockbusters, so it makes sense why Sony wants all of the attention on their PS5 iterations before mentioning the idea of ports.