Why is monopoly not popular?
In fact, this time the main thing that makes the players angry is Sony's attitude towards the future game strategy.
Since the release of the first generation PS1 on December 3, 1994, Sony has successfully built Playstation into the world's largest console game platform in more than 20 years. However, from the perspective of game brain holes and creativity, Sony may not be the strongest.
In the market competition of more than 20 years, whether facing Nintendo or Microsoft, excellent exclusive games are always the biggest selling point of PS. Just like Nintendo players choose ns for Mario and Zelda, a large number of players choose PS host because of the exclusive games such as mysteries and Ares.
It is worth noting that since the last generation, both PS4 and Xbox one are based on the x86 architecture and adopt the APU provided by AMD. This kind of hardware configuration has made it easier to Transplant Games from the underlying architecture. When the third and fourth generation hosts were popular, there were huge differences between different hosts, which once made the cost of game transplantation high.
This is why we can hardly see that Nintendo ns PS3 first-party games are rarely transplanted to other platforms. So far, players who want to play most of ns or PS3 exclusive games on PC still have to use simulators with very poor experience effect.
At the same time, for game developers, monopolizing the game often means greater risk, so those works except the first party studio will basically choose cross platform or limited time. With the increasingly fierce competition in the game market, the cost of game development is also higher and higher, and it is more and more difficult to make a profitable game. In this case, cross platform distribution and expanding their own user groups have become the most effective way to expand revenue. Moreover, starting from the previous generation, the difficulty of porting console games has been greatly reduced.
Players can be angry and angry, but you can't stop Sony from coveting PC game platform. More importantly, behind this is the future pattern of cloud games that Sony has to covet while fearing difficulties.
Sony going Microsoft's way?
When Sony began to drift to PC, Microsoft gave up the idea of monopolizing the world in the era of X Box one.
Earlier, Spencer said in an interview: all of Microsoft's first party games will enter the PC platform. In fact, Microsoft has done the same thing. Since the last generation, almost all the games developed by Microsoft have been on the PC platform.
In fact, the reason for this is very simple. First, it can't compete with Sony. Second, it has to face the blue ocean of cloud games based on PC system in the future.
Ironically, the next year, Microsoft announced that it would introduce all these games into the PC platform, and at the same time, it launched its own Xbox play anywhere business (XPA for short).
This practice, which was seen by the outside world as seriously weakening the sales of Xbox, has led to unexpected good results. In December of the same year, the sales volume of Xbox one in the U.S. market reached 1.51 million units, a year-on-year increase of 10%, the highest monthly sales volume since the launch of Xbox one.
This kind of market situation also makes Microsoft realize that the game ecology of interconnection may be more effective than monopoly.
Looking at the current game ecology of Microsoft, the biggest competitiveness may not be the strong performance of Xbox and some excellent game works, but its XGP (Xbox game pass). On the basis of a low monthly rent, players can enjoy thousands of legitimate games. At the same time, the existence of XGP is also very friendly for those small and medium-sized game developers. The sudden death of small companies due to the failure of a game is no longer as frequent as before.
The purpose of Microsoft's doing this is very clear, that is, instead of relying on a single game to drive the growth of the whole ecology, it should connect different hardware platforms to create a game platform with wide access based on the cloud, so as to drive the growth of the overall players of the game ecology. According to the latest data released by Microsoft at the end of January, the number of subscribers to Xbox game pass has reached 18 million (Xbox Live has more than 100 million active players every month).
In its future planning, Xbox should no longer be a simple game console, but a brand of the whole game ecology. After all, it doesn't make a big difference for Microsoft whether players play on Xbox or windows.
Compared with Microsoft, which has a huge PC (operating system) user base, Sony obviously does not have the strength and capital to operate in this way. PS is still a separate device, and Sony still needs PS's console games to provide it with important revenue every year. It can be seen that in the case of hardware and ecology are not dominant, in the face of the cloud game market, Sony can only improve its competitiveness through the console game content.
Is it necessary for exclusive games to exist?
Microsoft almost gave up the strategy of monopolizing games, and Sony began to loosen up. Nintendo seems to be the only one left in the royal family of console games. In the context of rapid changes in the form of digital entertainment, is it necessary to monopolize the game?
The answer is yes, at least until the cloud game technology is fully mature and popular, exclusive games still have the value of existence.
Looking back on the brilliant history of PS Series in the past, although we can't attribute all the important market position of PS series host to exclusive games, it can't be denied that the powerful exclusive game lineup really drives the sales of game host to a great extent.
One of the most typical cases is that after the fall out between skowell and Nintendo, Sony wooed skowell, who was on the verge of bankruptcy. Only after that did a generation of classic masterpiece FF7 appear, and the huge sales of PS mainframe driven by it.
So, even today, although the first escort game of ps5 is a bit of a drag, a series of exclusive boutique games that will land on ps5 in the future, including Ares, will still be the biggest competitiveness of ps5.
This is why, in the competition of PC platform, epic will buy all kinds of exclusive good games at a high price while giving free games.
Besides Sony, Nintendo is also a big monopolist in the whole industry. From a series of works of Nintendo in the past, the first party exclusive games developed based on their own platform characteristics can often make better use of the performance and characteristics of the hardware itself. For example, Nintendo's will and Wii u in the past and some first-party exclusive games of NS now are well combined with the characteristics of hardware products.
However, with the gradual maturity of cloud game, a new form of digital entertainment, even the hardware system of game console may disappear in the long history in the future. When there is no hardware partition, all products appear in the cloud, whether for game companies or developers, the choice of development and operation will naturally be more abundant. In the face of a larger market and user base, business strategy will naturally change.
From a technical point of view, Amazon, Microsoft and Google are among the top three cloud computing companies in the world. Among them, Google is determined to develop cloud games. Although its stadia business has not developed smoothly recently, it has not affected its strategic extension in this regard.
In addition to Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo, two relatively traditional Japanese companies, are still slow in the face of new technologies. Perhaps because of the pressure of cloud games on its own survival, Sony has reached a strategic cooperation with Microsoft in 2019. The two giants said that they will cooperate in the field of game streaming media technology, and Sony will use Microsoft azure to improve its cloud services and content streaming services. Interestingly, the Playstation Department has little or no knowledge of the cooperation.
The handshake between Kenichiro Yoshida and NADELLA not only brings huge imagination to the global players, but also represents their examination of Amazon and Google, the main competitors in the future.
What is the relationship between Sony's exploration in PC game market and the development of cloud game market? What kind of industry pattern will be formed after cloud game technology matures? Will Sony, Nintendo and other enterprises that rely on first party games as their main competitiveness lose their market dominance? It is difficult to give clear answers to these questions at this time today. The only thing that can be confirmed by users is that before there is a unified platform in the whole game industry, the form of exclusive games may change a little, but it will continue to exist.