Published on January 31st, 2016 | by gareth0
Traditional Games VS PlayStation VR Games: How Will Sony Divide Their Marketing Plan?
At approximately this time last year there was a heavy focus on the pending release of The Order: 1886 amongst followers of Sony’s Playstation 4 console. As I often do at the first of the year, I reviewed the previous year to note stories of interest in and to see if there’s anything that needs follow-up from as yet unreleased titles especially when we prepare for first magazine in the year. This year Sony does not have a major title waiting for us in February. To be clear; I am referring to a Sony exclusive not a third-party or other major release as there are definitely plenty of those coming. With the exception of the annual MLB title, Hard Rain, and Ratchet and Clank, Sony is waiting until later in the year for their next round of releases and in following the company’s pattern of late, they will wait until the games are good and ready before they’re released.
Many of us in the industry are looking forward to E3, and the big reveals that come out of it as well as release time frames.
Since we know Sony has a large assortment of titles in development as well as their Playstation VR system do this year, I am really intrigued as to what their focus is going to be. Is someone going to push heavy and hard for their console games, split the time with PlayStation VR, or push PlayStation VR and the supported games? What are businesses that Sony will stay with tried-and-true approach of pushing the games but will also push the new hardware as well as reports have many developers extremely impressed with by hardware as well is the 35,000,000+ systems already in the consumer marketplace.
The price and release date of Playstation VR is a key factor as to how many people will adopt the hardware early. One has to think that the holiday season is a natural release time for it, but I have heard some wild speculation says we may see it over the summer which would allow a flood of supported titles to group released in time for the holidays. Naturally Sony will have plenty of reveals for us at E3 but it is very likely this could be heavy on announcing new titles rather than focusing on titles that were announced previously.
Timing is key with the launch of new hardware as you want to make sure that it is at a time when optimal consumer conditions are right. Many believe the first of the year is a bad time to release things, as people are getting out from under the debt they took on during the holiday season as well as preparing their taxes. As such; spring and summer have always been an attractive time as refunds are arriving, younger people are out of school and have disposable income from summer jobs to spend, and of course there’s always the lucrative holiday season.
Whatever the end result, gamers can expect some very interesting things happening in 2016 especially with the pending release of Oculus Rift and their $599.99 price point. Sony will likely look to beat this but has to make sure that the product is ready to go before it is released into the marketplace is being first is not always best.
As somebody who has used the hardware at conventions we cover, I can tell you that I was extremely impressed with it and have no qualms about getting the unit when it is released. It appears that developers are going to actively support the system with many very interesting titles already in development which should ensure plenty of variety for gamers.
Of course Sony knows that the traditional games are the backbone of their system and as such I expect this to be the focus of their efforts until Playstation VR launches and the first few games for it with real heat arrive, and then it will be extremely interesting to see how they divide their time marketing the games as much as you may want to play the new Until Dawn game, unless you have a Playstation VR set, it’s not going to happen.