Whether you live streamed Sony’s press event on one of the many streaming service, or you checked out the video we placed on our site, you probably noticed something was a bit off. Unlike the other press events, which had actual gameplay or developers, this year’s press conference was simply an hour of videos with release windows not dates.
It seemed that was Sony’s strategy all along. According to Shuhei Yoshida, president of Sony’s Worldwide Studios, who sat down with Kinda Funny’s Greg Miller explained that was by design. Sony had an official pre-show that was loaded with multiple game announcements, then the actual presentation was just a video clip show with a live audience to bring in the mood.
“If you noticed, we had to put many of our games coming out this year in the pre-show lineup because we wanted to make the actual show one hour,” Yoshida said. “There were no technical issues that we needed to be worried about and there was no switching people, so we didn’t have rehearsal. We had just one run-through the night before. That was it.”
If that was what Sony was going for, they definitely accomplished their mission. However, Sony usually created a spectacle when they had their conferences but this one seemed very lackluster. Not to mention that they had no new hardware to offer and even the games announced were just videos mixtape, if you will.
Now, in regard to their launch windows, it was simply because of delays. They do happen. We got that the Red Dead Redemption sequel and that plagued the Batman: Arkham series. That makes sense but fans like due dates, regardless if delays happen. Keep in mind, the gaming community is never a happy bunch.
“Because we announced a lot of release dates for games that we had to apologize for pushing back in the past, we got together and discussed this seriously. Because PS4 games are so big and all the teams, even veteran teams making games for the past 10 years, still miscalculate how much work is done at the end of the development; polishing and debugging, for example. So we agreed to not announce release dates until very, very, very, very close to the release date. That puts a lot of challenge to our marketing and sales teams, but they understood and agreed and allowed us to just say seasons like fall or spring until we are so close to a finished beta. So that’s the reason we didn’t announce the actual date.”
Sony’s press events were usually a visual spectacle worth watching. Now, it is simply a highlight show of games coming out in the next quarter with no release dates. We have made changes here to make things easier but that does not always prove beneficial to the consumer. Now, if this is their new pattern, there will be no benefit to watch it live.