The PlayStation 4, launched November 15th, 2013, ended 2013 on a big note: millions of consoles sold, tons of positive press and the edge over its competitor, the Xbox One. As we begin 2014, all eyes are on Sony with one big question being asked by PS4 owners and gamers everywhere: Can Sony keep its momentum going in 2014? Will the next wave of PlayStation 4 exclusive games and software fare better than the previous wave, and it will it be enough to contend with the Xbox One's major exclusive Titanfall?
How Sony Can Keep Its Momentum Going
1) Strong Exclusive Titles
For many gamers and game journalists, Killzone: Shadow Fall and Knack failed to be the breakout hit that Sony was hoping for. The second wave of PS4 exclusives follows a similar pattern: new game in an existing franchise and brand new IP. Those two games in the second wave are InFamous: Second Son and Driveclub.
The difference here is that for the most part, every game in the InFamous series has been a success, with the game achieving not only sales success but success among reviewers and gamers as well. With the next installment in the franchise focusing on a new location and a new protagonist, inFamous: Second Son may very well be the first exclusive hit on the PlayStation 4.
Handled properly, Driveclub could be the next big hit. Delayed to add additional polish, it's clear that Sony is placing a lot of hope on this racing simulator. Driveclub looks to use the PlayStation Network in ways we have yet to see in an already released game and, if the driving is even a fraction as good as Gran Turismo, Sony will have a Forza contender in its stable and a game that will draw every gearhead around.
2) PlayStation Now Price
PlayStation Now is an exciting proposition, as it offers three generations of Sony titles to be streamed directly to your PlayStation 4. The big question mark surrounding the PlayStation Now service is price: Just how much will the service cost? Price the service low enough, such as $10 a month, and gamers will flock to it and propel the PlayStation 4 to even greater heights.
3) Titanfall Fails
Titanfall is the Xbox One's next big exclusive, releasing right around the same time as InFamous: Second Son. Microsoft is obviously banking on Titanfall being a huge success and a big draw for potential customers, as the company has paid big bucks to make the first game exclusive to the Xbox line of consoles (and PC). However, if Titanfall fails thanks to Electronic Arts mismanaging the game's launch or it doesn't fail to catch fire with the intended audience, it could contribute to making the PS4 look better by comparison and keeping the system's momentum going.
How Sony Could Lose Its Momentum
1) Weak Exclusive Titles
Sony delayed both InFamous: Second Son and Driveclub to "add a level of polish" to each game, and we sure hope that extra polish will help. Both Killzone and Knack received relatively low scores, which many brushed off as stating that both games were launch games and future games will undoubtedly be stronger. However, if InFamous and Driveclub are both bug-ridden and feel half-baked, it will definitely paint Sony in a negative light as there will be no excuses as to why the games both ended up poorly. The PS4 will quickly lose the momentum its gained if the system can't produce one exclusive game that is undoubtedly a hit.
2) PlayStation Now Price
While a low PlayStation Now price can only benefit Sony, setting the price too high, like at $40 or $50 a month, will instantly erode all momentum of the service and will come off as a detriment to the PlayStation 4. PlayStation Now will be a huge factor come this summer, one that could make or break the PlayStation 4.
3) Over-reliance on Indie Games
The PlayStation 4 currently has an abundance in indie games, far more than the Xbox One, and that trend looks to continue in 2014. However, based on your Facebook comments, many of you seem to downright hate indie games for some odd reason. "The graphics look like NES LOLZ" "Why wuld ppl pay for this junk" and my favorite, "We want real PS4 games" because apparently, only graphics make a good game.
While we here at PS4 Experts love indie games for providing us with new and inventive gameplay mechanics and stories, the overwhelming consensus from most readers is that most PS4 owners don't care for them. If Sony continues to lock up the indie game market while Microsoft snags the big retail exclusives that can show off the Xbox One's power, we might see some of the more fickle PS4 gamers jump ship. Sony needs to strike a careful balance between indie and retail as we roll into 2014.
What do you think, PS4 Experts readers? Will the PS4 remain on top in 2014 or do you think there is a possibility they may fall? Let us know in the comments and on Facebook!
Article by - Joshua Phillips
Insert Date: 1/27/2014