Three things that I think will really help switch the narrative into Xbox’s favor if and when they happen:
A solid showcase lineup that has a nice mix of first party coming out within the next 18 months, CG of further out first party fare, and third party Game Pass augments.
Starfield being very good to great.
The ActivisonBlizzardKing purchase closing, which I think it will, since the CMA has spent the past few weeks vomiting all over themselves on social media and court.
Sony had a strong opening salvo at the beginning of this generation, releasing titles greenlit under House and Kodera that were great and even quite a bit diverse in portfolio (Demon’s Souls, Astro’s Playroom, Returnal and Ragnarok, to name a few), but with those games released and the fruits of Jimbo’s labor starting to see the light of day (GaaS Fever baby!), it’s Xbox that has the next barrage.
Now this doesn’t mean Xbox will all of a sudden massively outsell PlayStation or anything, but as I stated in another thread, the PS6/NeXtBox era will be quite interesting if we see each company follow the same path they are now. I think Sony’s in more trouble long term than many think. This generation is sewn up for them, but the next one is a bigger question mark. All the while, Game Pass grows.
We are starting to see the narrative change already.
I havent heard “Xbox has no games” or “Phil Spencer should be sacked” talk on the forums for a little while. The anticipation for Starfiled is real, and its getting loud. You can see the air taken out of the anti MS crowd now.
It’s a self fulfilling prophecy. Xbox narratives are negative because media knows ps fanboys love that, and they outnumber Xbox fans so they don’t want to piss off their main target market. Constant negative narratives make Xbox less popular and the cycle goes on an on.
Just as the narrative changed with the switch. The switch was carried for a long time by Wii u ports. Those games
were great but not that well received because the Wii u was not popular, but switch ports for some reason got higher MC scores. The reason is obvious: you don’t want to piss off a massive userbase.
Regarding Xbox I am afraid that goalposts will be moved to whatever benefits Sony: Bethesda games will have lost its mojo according to “experts” and so on and so forth
Just look how they are trying so hard to push final fantasy XVI even if its just a timed exclusive. Sony has no clear cut goty candidate this year and they will use Final Fantasy. A franchise whose best days were 20/25 years ago.
They can try to move the goalposts but reality is crumbling for certain types of PlayStation gamers / media personalities. I mean you can only write so many articles about how ‘PlayStation won E3 by not showing up’ before you begin to look unhinged. Just imagine the next 5 years, will PlayStation even have a single E3 style showcase in that time? What will they show 1-2 AAA first party games every year? That’s not a showcase.
FF16 is a vastly different game than other titles in the franchise and should be taken on its own terms. If people are enjoying the demo who are we to tell them otherwise? However, notice how many headlines Starfield being 30fps got and how many headlines FF16 effectively being 30fps got (the performance mode is at 1080p, super blurry and juttery mess hovering between 35-60fps, closer to the bottom number most of the time). I guess the press doesn’t really care about 60fps that much.
The cadence of Sony’s releases is going to be interesting. They have committed to 2 AAA games/year. However, it’s unclear if that means two traditional Sony games and GAAS titles, or 2 AAA games period, be it the traditional Sony type game or live service.
We do know three facts:
current-gen games take longer to develop and require higher budgets than last-gen games
in 2022, Sony spent only 80% as much developing single player games as it did in 2018.
in 2024, Sony intends to spend 110% on single-player games as it did in 2018
Games in development in 2018 - The Last of Us 2, Ghost of Tsushima, Days Gone, Ratchet & Clank, SpiderMan 1 & Miles Morales, Death Stranding, Horizon FW, Demon’s Souls Remake, Death Stranding and a few more. By necessity, Sony had fewer such titles in development in 2022 - the ones we know of are SpiderMan 2, Wolverine, Rise of the Ronin and Death Stranding. Some unnanounced as well. So they will definitely bring some traditional SP games to the market and I’m sure they’ll be good, I doubt they’ll be able to reproduce what they had in 2020. They also have done some interesting moneyhats, eg. the Final Fantasy series, Silent Hill 2 Remake, but they don’t have much control over quality of these games - some of them might be another Forespoken.
Meanwhile, Microsoft has greatly increased investment in such games. Expect a ton of identity crises of Sony aficionados in the upcoming years, lol.