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When Is It Time For Sony To Unveil the Playstation 5?

Sony’s Playstation 4 is entering year-five of its release the public and as of now maintains an unwavering stranglehold on the console gaming market. With sales more than double that of its closest competition – Microsoft’s Xbox One – Sony and Playstation 4 have shown no signs of slowing down…or so it would seem. 2017 was a stellar year for the Playstation 4, but it was also the year its holidays sales showed signs of slowing for the first time since launch. While one would argue that the slight dip in numbers can be attributed to the runway success that is the Nintendo Switch (and to a lesser extent the release of the Xbox One X), is it time for Sony to start thinking about the next iteration of the Playstation? Or should the gaming powerhouse play the long game and respond what its competitors are up to?

In the fall of 2017, Microsoft launched the Xbox One X –  touting it as the most powerful console ever made. As true as that statement may be, Sony and the PS4 don’t appear to be too impacted – if at all – by a more powerful console on the market aside from a slight dip in sales during the 2017 holiday season. On the Big N’s side of things, the Nintendo Switch has officially outsold its predecessor’s lifetime sales and continues to sell like gangbusters, even tripling PS4’s sales numbers in its first year in Japan. While there is cause for a growing concern in Sony’s camp, one can argue that the PS4 has more than enough fuel in its tank to come out ahead of its competition.

Sony recently confirmed that Days Gone – a title which was thought to be released this year – would be pushed back to 2019, making Sony’s 2018-2019 release calendar a little more clear. 2018 is already shaping up to the another landmark year Playstation gamers with releases like Dissidia: Final Fantasy NT and the critically acclaimed Shadow of the Colossus remake leading the the 1st-Party charge. Sony’s library was further bolstered in the early months of the year with a number of 3rd-Party titles such as Dragon Ball FighterZ and Monster Hunter World attributing most of their sales on Sony’s platform. But that is just the beginning.  April will bring God of War, May will deliver Detroit: Become Human, and if my spider-sense is accurate, Insomniac’s highly anticipated Spider-Man will be out before the year’s end as well. And let’s not forget about Dreams, a title which looks to take the best parts of LittleBigPlanet and truly allow the player to let their creativity run wild.  Those heavy-hitters signify the strength of the Playstation brand and will to push more and more PS4 consoles into people’s homes.

While Nintendo is no stranger to the 1st-Party game, its main shots have already been fired with Super Mario Odyssey and Breath of the Wild launching in the Switch’s first year. Although, the recent announcement of Super Smash Brothers coming to Switch in 2018 will certainly help sway the pendulum a bit in Nintendo’s favor, especially if the game ends up being more than a port of the Wii U/3DS version. That just leaves Microsoft. While it may have a beast of a console, it doesn’t have much to offer in terms of a diverse library. Yes, the the higher resolution patches and the growing number to its backwards-compatible library are a good thing for its existing users, but Xbox One has yet to unveil a system-seller title. Sea of Thieves and State of Decay 2 seem to be getting a lot of buzz but Crackdown 3, however, appears to be nothing more than a fart in the wind. One has to wonder what Microsoft is hiding up its sleeve. 2018 may be a lock for Ps4’s continued success but 2019 may just be a the most critical year for Sony since the launch of Playstation 4.

By the time we raise a glass of champagne to 2019, the 6th year of the PS4’s stellar life will be upon us. With Days Gone slipping into 2019, will its release also be accompanied by the likes of Last of Us Part II and Death Stranding? My hunch tells me no, as TLoU II and Days Gone may be too similar and may inadvertently cannibalize each other.., honestly, Days Gone wouldn’t stand a chance. The Last of Us II is likely to be a 2020 title and Death Stranding? I wouldn’t count on seeing that game released prior to 2020 either. It is possible that TLoU II and Death Stranding are the swan songs of the PS4 generation in the same way that TLoU was the swan song of the PS3 generation. The argument can be made that a 2019 reveal and 2020 release of the PS5 is possible, but I think a 2020 reveal at E3 and March 2021 release might be the better decision. The Nintendo Switch releasing in March was able to stave off the supply and demand issues they have had in the past when releasing in November. Playstation hasn’t had those problems before, but it is an interesting strategy to take nonetheless.

What do you think? Do you think the PS5 will be announced sooner? Do you think Sony needs to get ahead of things or do you think they can still afford to wait until the PS4 install base dries up? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.

Podcasts Trophy Whores

Trophy Whores 325 – The Tricky Thing About 4k

Well Tricky rolls up the sleeves and dishes out a big old hate sandwich with a side of hate-o-naise and washes it down with some Hate-or-ade this week as he expresses his displeasure with owners of “the most power console ever”. Steve joins Tricky as they discuss the news of the week, the Rangers winning streak, and a possible next gen timetable.

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Are Gamers Suckers?

As gamers, we are always waiting for the the next big reveal. Whether it is the next IP, the next game, or the next generation console. Three years ago, we all knew the next generation consoles (PS4/XBOX ONE) were coming, but we had no details. Then within two months of each other, we got our first details, and we our mouths starting to salivate. We were so excited! We wanted more! We needed more! Then at E3 we got more. Some good (PS4) and some bad (XBOX ONE).

That wasn’t a shot at Microsoft. It was put there to help my point. Through screams through the internet, Microsoft quickly flipped the switch that Major Nelson said couldn’t be flipped. You remember that don’t you? We were told that Microsoft’s DRM policy just couldn’t be taken out cause they were already integrated into the system. We later found out that wasn’t true. It was an attempt to calm down the masses. It didn’t work, so they flipped the switch. That is just one way that I think the industry thinks of us like suckers.

The next thing is the Collectors Editions and Game Of The Year Editions.

When games get announced, we often wait to hear if there is going to be a “special” edition. We as gamers hunger for them. The statues, the soundtracks, etc. I’m guilty of it. My computer desk is covered in special edition stuff. We spend a lot of money on these as well. While games cost $60 normally we dont’ bat an eye spending anywhere from $100-$150 on these. Sure, you can say that you want to help support the developer, but it’s just something we tell ourselves to make us feel better. The real kick in the nuts comes several months later when DLC starts getting released and we spend more money on the game to get more out of it. Sometimes it’s DLC we want, sometimes its DLC that we need, and sometimes its pointless DLC that we don’t need but we want because we know everyone else has it and we just gotta have it!

Now a couple months later, provided the game did well (although this is not always the case), we are told a game of the year edition is coming and its going to include all the DLC for the game. While that sounds cool, it’s normally priced lower than the original game price. Where if we waited sometime after the the game was initially released, we would have gotten everything we wanted and saved some money. Another sucker is born!

Now I’ve been hard on you guys, but it needed to be said. With that being said, there still is another reason we become the biggest suckers of all. Next Gen Consoles. They get a lot of us.

Let’s talk about the universal failure of the Ouya. Not only is it not a good system but it only exists because gamers funded it through Kickstarter. If gamers did not drop money on it before it even existed, people wouldn’t be stuck with a console which basically boils down to an Android tablet with a controller.

Next up is the Wii U. This console came with a lot of hype. People were still on the Nintendo high that was the Wii. People were eager to buy this console. With sales the first year only reaching 5.86 million, it is no where close to what Nintendo forecast the sales to be. News like this has caused many in the industry to all but abandon the system. One developer has even gone on record to say that they currently don’t even have a game being developed for the console. People who have this console are desperately awaiting a game to justify their purchase.

To finish off this point, I’m going to combine the two next generation consoles. The PS4 and X-Box One have both done incredibly well out the gate with their sales ($6 Mil and $3 Mil respectively) in only the first 6 months, but that leads to my point. People flocked to the stores to buy these consoles to the point that they were sold out everywhere and people bought them and just flipped them on Ebay for double, if not triple, the money. Of course people bought them, because if there wasn’t a market for it, it wouldn’t happen.

All this lead up to this lead up this question? Are gamers suckers? Are we so blind to go out and spend money on something the first day that we all know will wind up biting us in the ass because weren’t patient enough to wait?