We’re inching closer to the next information drop for the PlayStation 5 but in related news, Sony has announced its new “Ready For PlayStation 5” Bravia TV’s, designed to give the best experience for the upcoming console.
First is the Sony Bravia X90H, a 4K TV with 55 / 65 / 75 / 85-inch variants and has a starting price of $999 or around PHP50,000, is a TV that will feature Sony’s full array LED and Acoustic Multi-Audio technology and will also support a 120Hz refresh rate option and input lag as low as 7.2 milliseconds.
The second, and more expensive of the two sets, is the Bravia Z8H, this time boasting of an 8K capable screen available in 75 and 85-inch variants and with a starting retail price of a whopping $6,999 or around PHP350,000.
Both sets will feature what’s called the “BRAVIA Game Mode”, which will allow players enjoy their PlayStation 5 games with low latency as well as waking both the TV and the PS5 using the TV remote.
These TV sets are expected to release later this year, making a perfect match for when the PlayStation 5 hits retail.
For more information on these upcoming TV’s, you can check out the Sony Website.
In a report from Bloomberg, Sony is apparently considering bidding to acquire Leyou Technologies, who owns Digital Extremes and Splash Damage, devs for Warframe and Gears Tactics respectively.
Sony is currently working with a financial advisor to study the acquisition and how it would prove useful to the tech giant.
Sony is not the only suitor for Leyou, as there are two other bidders in the race, but Sony is ‘hoping that it can edge out other bidders with greater certainty of financing’. Charles Yuk, the controlling shareholder for Leyou, is aiming to choose a buyer by this month. Of course, until that happens, nothing is certain and other bidders could still join in on the party.
Both Sony and Leyou have declined to comment when asked by Bloomberg.
Warframe has turned itself around into one of the hottest free to play games out there and with that amount of talent potentially joining Sony, a company that can provide financial support as needed, who knows what the potential of their next title may be?
Equally impressive is the number of PS Plus subscribers, totalling 41.5 million, as digital services and subscriptions may continue to trend upwards due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.
Speaking of COVID-19, it is noteworthy that the PS5, despite all of the news about possible manufacturing delays, is still scheduled for the Holidays of 2020, as can be seen through the above report on page 20:
Regarding the launch of PlayStation®5, although factors such as employees working from home and restrictions on international travel have presented some challenges in regards to part of the testing process and the qualification of production lines, development is progressing with the launch of the console scheduled for the 2020 holiday season. At this point in time major problems have not arisen in the game software development pipeline for Sony’s own first-party studios or its partners’ studios.
With the impending release of the next generation consoles towards the end of the year, the PS4 may not sell enough to topple the Game Boy in lifetime sales but The Last of Us 2 and Ghost of Tsushima may give it one last push to take over that third place.
We’ve yet to hear concrete details for the PS5 but if the ongoing reports are true, the next couple of weeks may be the time when Sony will unveil their next generation offering.
Initial rumors have placed the leaker as a disgruntled employee from Naughty Dog who used the incident as leverage to improved the working conditions in the studio, citing unfair treatment of employees. This has now been put to rest following the statement from Sony.
Sony has great plans for Horizon Zero Dawn, the critically acclaimed title from Guerrilla Games. Rumor has it that development for the sequel, which was initially planned for the PS4, is now fully shifting to PS5 and is said to be “gigantic” in scope and will feature coop play.
This, coming from a report by VGC which has been corroborated by multiple sources with information on the situation.
With the technological advancements that the next generation consoles will bring, it won’t be a surprise to see bigger worlds with tons of things to do and VGC has pointed out that the next game in the planned trilogy will give players much more freedom to explore the world. In what capacity, we don’t know yet, but it would be safe to expect a much larger map at the very least.
As for the coop feature, it was not quite sure whether it will be built into the story or be a totally new mode altogether, so we’ll have to wait for more official updates from Sony or Guerrilla but as per the VGC report, the sequel will include coop and may have plans for players to team up against bigger and badder foes.
Back in 2017, Shawn Layden expressed his adoration for the IP and has said that it will be a big part of their plans moving forward:
“[Guerrilla Games head honcho] Herman Hulst has got a very keen mind on where he wants to take Horizon and what the roadmap is – and that roadmap is expressed in multiple years. I think we’ll be in the Horizon business for a long time.”
Horizon Zero Dawn is coming to the PC with a Summer 2020 release window.
If any of what Bloomberg said is to believed, then we’ve got quite a number of things to unpack in the report – Limited quantities at launch, possible price point, and reveal strategy which includes the DualSense.
Citing sources who refuse “to be identified because the subject is private”, Sony is set to produce 5-6 million PS5 units within its first fiscal year, which ends in March 2021. While that number may seem like a lot, the PS4 sold 7.5 million units within its first 6 months, putting the PS5 at a huge supply deficit leading into the next generation.
Sony does NOT want to be in that place, especially when the hype for the upcoming consoles is at an all time high and Microsoft is inching closer to redemption.
The twist? An expensive price tag may put the 5-6 million units as a safe supply estimate.
Bloomberg reports that game developers who have been creating the next gen titles expect the machine to be around the $499-$549 range, a full $100 more expensive than the PS4 when it first released. This could possibly serve as a mild deterrent to adopt on day one.
Granted, the technology and parts could justify the price tag, Sony may even jack up the price a bit to avoid selling the console at a loss, at least just to break even maybe.
Or maybe they’ll be forced to sell at a loss? Sony and Microsoft are playing a game of chess with regards to pricing at the moment and if the PS4 / XBox One launch is anything to go by, then price will definitely spell success or failure for both companies.
The strategy for Sony, it seems, will be to ease players in transitioning to a PS5. Whether this leads to a potential PS4 price drop in the months to come or to produce more cross generational content to lessen the FOMO, the supply must be able to meet the demand eventually. Hardware sales are only part of the equation, and Sony must look to improve PS Plus subscriptions and even PS Now to mitigate the impact, similar to what Microsoft has done with Game Pass and Live.
Of course, the COVID-19 outbreak is to blame for a lot of this. From disrupting events to production lines around the world, Sony’s promotional strategy has also been derailed.
Bloomberg also reports that Sony may forego holding a physical event for the PS5 reveal, which will not be surprising considering that global events like E3 and GDC have already cancelled. The DualSense was also revealed in a “hurried fashion”, in fear of leaks since it was shared with a handful of developers.
Lastly, Sony will stick to its 2020 Holiday launch window as long as Microsoft sticks to their launch schedule. Neither will want to budge, so expect launch dates to be very close to each other, at a possible supply compromise most likely.
While Sony has yet to provide official comments about the report, it would be interesting how both Sony and Microsoft can adapt to the current conditions leading towards launch.
The next generation of consoles is nearly upon us. Towards the end of the year, we will finally get to see the PS5 and the Xbox Series X, with both packing monstrous power that will surely put the current generation to shame. We keep mentioning the PS5 and the Xbox Series X side by side since they have been in direct competition with each other ever since a few generations back.
Phil Spencer thinks this may not be the case anymore.
In a recent interview with Protocol, Spencer shared his views on the upcoming generation and how the Xbox is positioned in such a way that the PS5 is no longer it’s main competitor in the space:
“When you talk about Nintendo and Sony, we have a ton of respect for them, but we see Amazon and Google as the main competitors going forward,” Spencer said. “That’s not to disrespect Nintendo and Sony, but the traditional gaming companies are somewhat out of position. I guess they could try to re-create Azure, but we’ve invested tens of billions of dollars in cloud over the years.”
Microsoft had, for a lack of a better term, given up on the current generation to focus on the next. The launch of the Xbox One was rocky to say the least and even the succeeding iteration, the One X, was not enough to save the day even though it was by far the most capable system in terms of specs and services.
Over the years, Microsoft went back to the basics, focusing efforts on backwards compatibility across all Xbox generations, ensuring a smooth transition for all users. Xbox Gold and Game Pass have been fantastic services and arguably better than its PlayStation counterpart in terms of value. Microsoft has laid down the foundation for the next generation, one that sees them in direct competition with Goodle and Amazon, with the coming of xCloud.
“I don’t want to be in a fight over format wars with those guys while Amazon and Google are focusing on how to get gaming to seven billion people around the world,” “Ultimately, that’s the goal.”
xCloud is their goal moving forward, getting everyone to play Xbox games on any device imaginable that’s capable of streaming media. The Nintendo Switch has shown us that gaming on the go is definitely something that people want, so you can only imagine the potential of being able to play a whole library of Xbox games on the go. It’s definitely a very enticing proposition.
If Microsoft is able to pull this off, and they indeed have the resources to do so, they will be carving a huge chunk out of the next generation for themselves and with Stadia off to a shaky start, the Xbox Series X may have already won the battle as early as now because of Spencer’s vision and leadership.
The PS5 is still looking to be THE game console everyone turns to but it’ll admittedly take a lot of catching up to do, something they are clearly capable of. As we eagerly await the official PS5 announcement, we can only predict what Sony has in store for us but one thing is for certain, the next generation will clearly blow us away with how we experience gaming as a whole.
For the second year in a row, Sony is skipping E3, much to the dismay of its fans. A company representative has confirmed to GamesIndustry.biz as “it does not feel the vision for the event is right for what it has planned for 2020.”
“After thorough evaluation Sony Interactive Entertainment has decided not to participate in E3 2020,” a Sony Interactive Entertainment representative said. “We have great respect for the ESA as an organization, but we do not feel the vision of E3 2020 is the right venue for what we are focused on this year.”
“We will build upon our global events strategy in 2020 by participating in hundreds of consumer events across the globe. Our focus is on making sure fans feel part of the PlayStation family and have access to play their favorite content. We have a fantastic line up of titles coming to PlayStation 4, and with the upcoming launch of PlayStation 5, we are truly looking forward to a year of celebration with our fans.”
While it is disappointing, it should not come as a surprise that this is the direction Sony is pushing for. Will others follow suit? We’ll have to wait and see but one thing is certain, E3 has been dealt another major blow.