Do Exclusives Really Matter Anymore?
By David Ryan
With the next generation of consoles right around the corner, both Sony and Microsoft have set their best efforts in motion in a bid to entice and attract gamers all across the world to purchase their new platforms this winter.
With the consoles being largely the same in terms of power and ability, more emphasis has been placed on exclusives this time round. Exclusives, for those that don’t know, are titles that can only be played on one console. For example, the Halo series is an Xbox only franchise, whereas The Last of Us can only be played on the PlayStation 3.
As you can imagine, the better the exclusives, the better the chance one console will be picked up in favour of the other on release day.
Both Sony and Microsoft have a long pedigree of delivering high quality exclusives to their previous consoles. Gears of War and Forza are some of the Xbox’s best efforts and PlayStation can boast top-notch titles such as Heavy Rain and the Uncharted series. But what about the next-gen line of exclusives?
Microsoft has announced Titanfall from Respawn Entertainment which allows players fight either on foot as free-running “pilots” or inside agile walkers called “Titans” to complete team-based objectives. Uniquely, Titanfall is multiplayer-only; however it injects single-player elements such as plot, character chatter, and non-player characters into its matches.
Sony on the other hand has announced a new iteration to the inFAMOUS series; inFAMOUS: Second Son. This new title in the series stars a new character, new abilities and a new real world setting. For the first time the Sony owned developer Sucker Punch has even incorporated motion capture within the game and many believe Second Son is the most promising PlayStation exclusive.
The recent GamesCom event in Germany has also ushered in a whole host of new and exciting PlayStation 4 and Xbox One exclusives. Amongst other titles, Sony has announced a trio of exciting IP’s called Rime, The Shadow of the Beast (technically a remake) and Everyone’s Gone to the Rapture. In contrast, Microsoft has announced that every European Xbox One pre-ordered bundle will include a copy of FIFA 14 at no extra cost and Call of Duty: Ghosts will have dedicated Microsoft online servers.
Do Exclusives Influence Gamers?
We are in a strange position within the gaming market. On one hand, Xbox has the core Call of Duty players that won’t even look at a PlayStation, regardless of what exclusives are announced. On the other hand, there is a large portion of the market that will simply be influenced on the price of a console. With PlayStation being £80/$100 cheaper than the Xbox One, many people will simply choose the Sony option as a way to save money whilst having a new console sitting under their television.
With a handful of exciting exclusives already announced, and more to come over the coming months from both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, do exclusives still matter? In my opinion yes, but the £80/$100 price difference matters a whole lot more.
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