Ex-PlayStation Boss Criticizes Exclusivity

Former PlayStation executive Shawn Layden has addressed his grievances about exclusivity on the PS5 and shared why it doesn’t sit right with the modern-day game industry, where budgets are ballooning and layoffs are rampant.

Banking on exclusivity is a key part of PlayStation’s strategy for outperforming its rivals, Xbox and Nintendo. Across the current console generation, it has leveraged PlayStation exclusives, such as God of War: Ragnarok and Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, to reap notable commercial success. However, not everyone who has worked for the console giant seems to be in favor of keeping games restricted to one platform.

In an interview with VentureBeat, Shawn Layden, the ex-chief at Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studios, suggested exclusivity is more of a problem than a perk. He said, “When your costs for a game exceed $200 million, exclusivity is your Achilles’ heel.” Layden highlighted how exclusivity works against free-to-play and live-service games by limiting the audience, which limits the revenue. Further, he underlined the success of PlayStation’s newest live-service game, Helldivers 2, which came out on PS5 and PC simultaneously.

While Layden admitted that exclusivity hurts single-player games on a comparatively smaller scale, he justified his stance for more multi-platform launches in this category by bringing the budget into perspective. He said, “For single-player games, it’s not the same exigency. But if you’re spending $250 million, you want to be able to sell it to as many people as possible, even if it’s just 10% more.”

Why and How PlayStation May Be Altering Its Approach Exclusivity
The big draw for PlayStation in 2023 was Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, built on a budget of over $300 million. A year before, God of War: Ragnarok, landed after around $200 million was spent on its development. Clearly, the budget of tentpole AAA games is consistently increasing, making it even harder to generate a profit. Consequentially, releasing games exclusively on a single platform becomes a risky move. In the worst-case scenario, underperforming sales can force the developers to cut costs, leading to a layoff wave similar to the one that is currently ravaging the industry.

Despite focusing on exclusivity for years, it seems like PlayStation may finally be budging, if the past few years are anything to go by. Starting with Horizon Zero Dawn in 2020, the Japanese firm has been steadily shipping its exclusives to PC. Since then, the time PlayStation takes to bring an exclusive game to PC has only reduced. Horizon Zero Dawn took 3 years to come to PC, whereas Horizon Forbidden West is set to arrive on PC just 2 years after its initial launch. Helldivers 2 releasing on PS5 and PC at the same time is also something unprecedented in recent memory. Going forward, it’ll be interesting to track how PlayStation shapes its PC strategy and if that falls in line with Layden’s views.

Related Forum: PlayStation Forum

Source: https://gamerant.com/playstation-former-boss-shawn-layden-exclusivity-bad/


"Ex-PlayStation Boss Criticizes Exclusivity" :: Login/Create an Account :: 2 comments

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the PC gamers need to upgrade their PC's if they want to play good games that have been on Playstation lmao


Once Xbox makes a good exclusive they can talk