Call me cynic, skeptic or plain fatalist, but I don’t like where the industry is headed. Especially, when you look at the mainstream big hitters. While browsing in Destructoid, I found this article on how PS3 exclusives don’t sell. Basically it bogs down to this: of all the great PS3 exclusives, only one passed the one million mark in actual sales… and that was the derivative “Resistance – Fall of Man”. This fact is disturbing for two reasons.
Firstly, this means people prefer the typical Xbox360 exclusive over Sony’s. I’m sorry to say, but no gruff military game like “Gears of War” can measure up to the quality of a game like “Uncharted – Drake’s Fortune” or “Metal Gear Solid 4”. Sure, they’re all blockbusters, and in a sense, they’re all pieces of shallow entertainment, but PS3 exclusives show the backing of a company that is willing to pay for certain standards that aren’t usually present in Microsoft’s games. Decent narrative and aesthetic assets for instance. Even “Heavenly Sword” and “Lair”, games with a fair share of problems on an execution of level, show a greater deal of identity and artistic merit than any “Halo” or “Mass Effect” could ever hope to achieve. However, the latter sell, while the former don’t. This tells me that gamers are backing the wrong horse, and are severely lacking in the taste department. There’s nothing wrong with Microsoft’s games, mind you, I love them as much as the next guy, but Sony is giving us more than just mind numbing action games… yet no one is paying attention to that difference.
The second reason why this is a problem comes from the fact that Sony is the only of the three hardware console producers that has been paying a lot of money to produce quality content. And not just on a mainstream level, but also in small and medium-sized ventures, such as Q-Games’ (“PixelJunk Eden”) and ThatGameCompany’s (“flOw”, “flower”) downloadable titles. By not buying any of these games, gamers are saying it’s not worth producing and designing them, which will eventually lead Sony to stop sponsoring such ventures. Even if you do not agree that Sony’s games offer something more than Microsoft’s, you must concur that video-games need diversity and wealth of content. But if this trend continues there will be none, and there’s a very strong chance than in a few years time, you won’t get “The Last Guardian” or “Heavy Rain”-like games. Instead you will only have the choice to buy Microsoft’s “Halo’s” and “Gear’s of War” or Sony’s “Killzone’s” and “Resistance’s”, because companies will figure those are the only game-types people will buy. I don’t know about you, but that’s a prospect that doesn’t sound good to me.