Playstation is making a MASSIVE mistake by not investing in PSNOW

I believe that Playstation is making a massive mistake by not investing heavily in PSNOW. Their current strategy which is to release their AAA games as a full 70 dollar release and occasionally put a couple of their games on PSNOW a few years later.

This strategy is half-hearted and is merely a compromise. There has always been a sense that if Sony were to fully invest in PSNOW that it would be a massive success. Imagine if PSNOW got signicant third party investment, day one first party support, and a significant churn of games coming into the service. They would gain millions upon millions of subscribers and could even overtake GamePass as the most successful subscription service.

As of now, Sony seem hesitant to actually put any games of quality into the service and are very far behind Gamepass which would be a potential competitor to PSNOW. They seem more focused on PSPLUS instead of Now, even hinting at more smaller games coming to PLUS day one.

As someone who owns a PS5 and genuinely loves a lot of their games, it is completely baffling to me that Sony has yet to take advantage of a subscription service and invest in PSNOW.


In all honesty, they can’t afford what MS is doing right now with Game Pass. In future what I can see is the games joining the service 1 year after release and staying there. We won’t see parity of Game Pass and PSNow at all imo. Another thing is Sony doesn’t have enough teams to follow what MS is doing and I don’t think there are many cheap teams left that they could buy. I can’t see them buying a publisher either, just doesn’t seem like something they’d do.


They can afford their own first party games at the minimum which would bring in millions of subs

Rand/Jez said on last week’s podcast that if Sony were to put their exclusives in PS Now day one that they would surpass Game Pass quickly in which I do agree. Far bigger user install base, more hardcore fans, better first party lineup of exclusives already available and coming.

I do believe that before the current generation ends that Sony’s first party exclusives will be on PS Now and PC day one. Just a matter of time.

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The problem is at that point Gamepass could be at 50+ million subs and Sony is having to make up a lot of ground.

Sony right now is basically the HBO Max to Xbox’s Disney Plus. That isn’t where I want to be if I’m Sony.

Don’t agree with this at all, Gamepass is available on all platforms, soon even on TV’s etc. Sony has shown no willingness to do the same as they are afraid of making their hardware less appealing. PS has no chance of matching the output of XGS this gen, and the gap will probably even increase with more acquisitions. Content is king and its clear to see the difference in investment by both into getting more.

Yeah that is a huge draw because their games are massive, but I highly doubt they could have 2-5 ish big games every year with their current setup when it seems their teams take about 3 years to make games. To keep people subbed you need a lot of content and right now the hose of content from Sony isn’t even close to being wide enough and I would even say MS doesn’t have a wide enough hose yet even at 23 studios.

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To me Sony needs to invest now or completely abandon PSNOW and go all in on “premium content” and act like Martin Scorsese and bemoan the death of movie theaters

I agree. I think there’s a real chance that streaming becomes the future of gaming (not 100%, there will always be a place for home console hardware, but streaming may become the default way that most people play), and if/when that happens, Microsoft will be years ahead in terms of infrastructure, subscription numbers, and building their ecosystem around that.

That’s the bet that Microsoft is placing. Sony seems to be making the bet that the PS5 generation will be an exact repeat of PS4, so all they have to do is replicate every element of their strategy from 2013. That strikes me as a risky way to do business, but… we’ll see.


Yeah they’re risking the Microsoft move of getting into something too late, they still have plenty of time but they really should do something now. I think they’re just scared about the loss of revenue and are probably trying to work it all out.

It’s not even just streaming vs. local console-- Microsoft is making big investments into backwards compatibility and enhancement-- building out their content library. Sony’s strategy is based on selling a $70 game, then next month the support for that title goes away and you buy the next big $70 game. They’re putting all their chips on the idea that what worked in 2013 will keep working forever.

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As someone who owns a PlayStation 5 and just played Miles Morales, the difference is that while Game Pass has a lot of quantity, their quality is limited in regards to their first party studios. Will they have double or so the games this generation? Most likely but will they be at a high level of quality? This remains to be seen.

PS Now has around 800 games which makes the 250 or so on Game Pass look like nothing in comparison. The service itself sucks and Sony’s games aren’t on it. Add Sony’s games day one and the service simply being better and well, I do believe that they could surpass Game Pass. Plus, if Game Pass doesn’t take off on mobile devices and PC (since it’s probably 15m or so that are subscribed on console), Sony can easily jump ahead.

Sony’s studios and games are simply superior. Microsoft needs to get back to what they were with Xbox 360 in this regard. There’s a reason why majority are against Microsoft/Xbox and why I personally want them to push Starfield to 2022. It’s because we’re concerned about the quality level.

Quantity wise, no issues there. Variety, no issues. My main issue is the quality and when you see a game like Halo Infinite get revealed the way that it did but never see this happen with Sony (or Nintendo for that matter), it makes you question if they can deliver the quality that Sony (and Nintendo) does and on a consistent basis.

Don’t get me wrong, im loving everything that Microsoft is doing with Xbox and Series X is my primary gaming console but unlike Sony’s first party studios games, im nowhere near the level of confidence with them that I am with Sony. They simply need to prove it to me.

People can love Sea of Thieves or Crackdown 3 just like people can love Days Gone or Knack but these games are not the top tier and in this regard, when you do compare the games on PS4 to Xbox One, it’s a slaughter and PS5 started out with Miles, Demon’s Souls Remake, Sackboy to a lesser extent, Ratchet will be amazing since Insomniac is amazing and we’ll have to see how Returnal does but on the Xbox side, it’s only Gears Tactics thus far with nothing as of now for the first half of 2021.

I’m simply honest and realistic. One side has a proven track record of over a decade with games that sell 10m to 20m copies. The other side, not so much.

No one wants Microsoft to prove me wrong more than I do especially since it greatly benefits me but until they do, one side has higher quality of first party titles while the other side and people can get mad all they want even though it’s the truth with this, we wait for their exclusives which let’s be honest, after years and years, eventually people just get sick and tired of waiting.

We’ll see how it all plays out over the next 6-8 years. I have both Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 so im set and good to play!!! The better quality games they release, the better it is for me and everyone else.


I agree with everything you’ve said. And Sony’s first party studios have earned the benefit of the doubt. But studios and game series are only on top until they aren’t anymore. Maybe cinematic third person shooters fall out of fashion. Maybe top talent leaves. Who knows. But Halo, Gears, and Fable used to be on top of the world, until they weren’t anymore. How long can God of War and The Last of Us remain on top? Probably not forever.

In the meantime, Microsoft is making bets on the future of the industry. Kinect-- wrong bet. Game Pass-- seems to be a great bet so far. Xcloud-- we’ll see.

Yeah, we’ll see how it all plays out over the next 6-8 years. Either way, it’s going to be an amazing generation!!!

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Nah it doesn’t matter; those 800 games and occasional releases didn’t even get them to 5million on a 120m console base. You need both quality and quantity and the real competition (if PS now changes) would be this generation. Xbox will have Starfield, Elder Scrolls, a Fallout game probably, Avowed, Doom, Fable, Indiana Jones and so many great studios from the Zenimax deal, 35 teams pumping games + already guaranteed investment into E-rated games, no way is it anywhere like the last gen.

I’d easily bet on Gamepass staying top even with day one releases on PS now. To win the service battle you need to cover all your bases with all genres and Sony at the moment simply doesn’t have that and they will continue doing what has worked well for them.

Microsoft is trying is fill its portfolio with all types of games from Grounded, Minecraft, Halo to ES6, so they can interest all types of gamers and not just the AAA Sony games. It is about meeting the customers where they want to play and Gamepass is on its way to be everywhere.

Until Sony can match Gamepass in 1 day games, platform and regional availability, pricing, and variety of gamepass I don’t see them coming close.

The problem i see with your argument is that right now Sony has 800 games in psnow. If those 800 games meant anything they would have numbers to rival gamepass already so the 800 games they already are meaningless. As they aren’t moving to the needle.

The other problem you have is in your quality vs quantity argument is that in a subscription service just having a lot of titles is meaningless. Also just having 1 or 2 masterpieces a year isn’t good enough. As yes lets look at 2018 for instance. We had god of war and spiderman come out for PlayStation great. Lets say both drop into a gamepass like service made by sony.

Those are generally one and done games. So yes I would subscribe for the month and then play those games and then unsubscribe. As sony would need compelling content coming out at a regular cadence to keep me subscribed. As they don’t have much for exclusive multiplayer games as it’s just not their wheelhouse.

Now you could say they will just go out and buy exclusives for the service which is fine they could. However, if you look at their financials they can’t afford to buy exclusives specifically for whatever there service is and then also buy exclusives for the platform itself. In order to do such a thing they would need to shift the focus of the entire playstation division itself like Microsoft has and literally build your company around PSnow or whatever service they would put out. I don’t see Sony doing that.

The other thing you have to look at is that if you are doing a Netflix-style service like gamepass you need variety. Every game can’t be the third-person story-driven narrative like the vast majority of sony first-party games are. As otherwise, the 100 million PlayStation owners won’t subscribe as the vast majority of them aren’t buying the first party games now at best you are seeing around 10 million copies sold. Of those 10 million a portion of those customers won’t ever subscribe to a service like that. So let’s be generous and say you get 7 million subs out of those 10 million people who would have bought the game. thats not really moving the needle compared to a gamepass as Sony has nothing to follow up with.

Long term, you can see MIcrosoft making moves to be self sufficient to a large degree with gamepass. Meaning their first party studios would be enough to support gamepass without third party help when it comes to current releases. As like we saw with netflix in the next 10 years EA, ubisoft, etc will charge more for their content. THen you run into same problem netflix had. Either you make more original content or you keep paying someone else more and more.

So when you get to that point. Sony can’t borrow enough debt to keep up with Microsoft who would be able to support the service, and buy up content makers without needing to borrow against debt.

Then if you look at wanting to get on TV’s and phones, etc. you need to stream your games. PSnow is not equipped to stream worldwide to devices like that. They would also need datacenters. That means paying Amazon or Microsoft. So in order to make up ground against your competitors you have to pay your competitors. Sony has a deal with Microsoft. Meaning they would use MIcrosoft cloud services. So for every subscriber they ultimately get. A portion of that sub still goes to Microsoft and ultimately Xbox to better there own service against Sony.


Their headspace is totally different than MS’s. Their mindset is still stuck in the paradigm of selling consoles in order to sell sw and drive revenues from that. To them, install base is just about console sales. That is indeed a huge mistake imho. When they have to rely on Azure for streaming back end though, they aren’t well positioned to start exploring other frameworks. That is why they are behind the curve on this and why they don’t agree about affording to give away 1P releases day 1. The machinery by which their understanding of the industry works presumes the foundation of any platform has to be console install base which then you can build sw revenues atop.

The downside of going broad with the meaning of ‘the platform’ like Xbox does is that you gotta find ways to make the games run on those devices. MS can use xCloud for this but Sony doesn’t have a viable back end cloud compute platform of their own to control and leverage. The long term (middle term even) problems this causes for Sony’s ability to compete are huge.

At some point not too far off we will all be streaming our games to a local box almost all the time. Just like how digital distribution took off and snowballed, the same will happen to streaming and it will happen a lot sooner than ppl realize. When that happens, the way platforms are themselves distributed ENTIRELY changes. MS could drastically upgrade server tech behind the scenes largely in secret and then one day out of the blue just announce a next gen platform in the cloud. It could be free to existing Game Pass subs and instantly playable/accessible from every device ppl use for accessing the wider Xbox platform. There would be no ‘starting over’ with install base. There would be no need to compel anyone to buy a brand new box for hundreds of dollars. No need for a big marketing build up. Just one huge, seamless leap into a next gen.

I bet within 5 yrs something akin to the above happens. Sony won’t be positioned to do a thing about it. They won’t be able to use those servers the way Xbox does. They won’t have alternative infrastructure options unless they go to Google.


I wonder if Sony ends up being similar to one of these major Movie Studios where they are stuck releasing a few big games every few years while the competition is rolling in subscription money and is churning out things to play.

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I doubt its going to happen.

Microsoft has 23 studios and they still say its not enough. Does Sony have money to buy another 15 AAA studios? I doubt it.

And secondly, it all means nothing if your $60/70 first party games aint launching on it on DAY 1.

You can’t take half measures in this case. You have to be all in or forget about winning.

Without some kind of revolution from Amazon Luna…Gamepass will be uncontested. It probably is already.

And yes, its a massive, massive mistake as i’m sure we shall see this holiday when Forza Horizon 5, Halo Infinite and Starfield grab 15-20 million players in opening month.

I don’t think they could do it now. The best hope was 3-4 years ago and kill gamepass in the crib. Financially…well it speaks for itself, Microsoft purchased 17 studios in a couple of years. Sony just one. They certainly not matching Microsoft on the online multiplayer which is going to keep gamers coming back. They’re basically stuck.

Can’t expect a lot of subscriptions from a library of one and dones with no multiplayer…that aren’t even launching day 1.

Phils already suggested they’re going to do that with Xbox One. I mean they’re putting X/S games on smart TVs and dongles…did anyone really think they were going to forget about Xbox One?


Wow. I somehow never thought about comparing things to the film industry but now that ya bring that up that sounds like a REALLY great analogy actually. Whereas blockbuster films make ya go spend $$$ to go to a theater and that is the only way to view them, streaming services offer compelling content of that quality on all sorts of devices for a monthly fee and because of the distribution approach they can afford for that content to be much more in depth and longer than movies can get away with.

That seems eerily similar to Sony pushing everyone to buy their console to access their blockbuster games while MS streams everything to everyone for a low cost sub fee.