In a surprising turn of events, it seems that Sony's first-party games may not appear exclusively on PlayStation consoles. Sony is busy gearing up for the release of its next-generation console, the PlayStation 5, which boasts specs that should please any hardcore gamer. The company already has some major third-party studios working on titles for the new console, including Bandai Namco's Supermassive Games and Square Enix's Luminous Production Studio.
Sony also continues to bring developers into its fold and has announced plans to purchase more development companies ahead of the release of the PS5. Just recently, the company surprised everyone in the industry by announcing that Sony bought Insomniac Games, the developer behind Marvel's Spider-Man for the PS4. However, Insomniac has also developed titles for the PC and Xbox One. Many in the industry assumed Sony's acquisition meant that Insomniac would become a PlayStation-exclusive developer.
However, that might not be the case. Insomniac, along with Sony's other first-party studios might not develop games exclusively for PlayStation. In an interview with Bloomberg, Sony Worldwide Studios Chairman Shawn Layden said:
"We must support the PlayStation platform — that is nonnegotiable. That said, you will see in the future some titles coming out of my collection of studios which may need to lean into a wider installed base."
This probably doesn't mean that Sony's first-party studios will develop games for Xbox products. Instead, it likely means that Sony has plans to extend its titles to PC. The company has already started reaching out to that market, including releasing PlayStation Now on PC, which gives subscribers access to a library of over 400 PlayStation games. It's also true that some PlayStation-exclusive third-party studios are starting to reach out beyond the PlayStation. Quantic Dream recently announced that it had plans to create multi-platform games in the future. It also recently came to light that Death Stranding, the new title by Hideo Kojima, is no longer listed on Sony's list of PS4 exclusives. The PC market is one that many developers are starting to feel that they can't ignore.
It makes sense that Sony would also adopt a similar stance. There will always be players who prefer console over PC and vice-versa. By embracing both systems, Sony could potentially cash in on two markets at the same time with its first-party games. This new stance also shouldn't affect sales of the PS5, which is the most highly-anticipated next-generation console. The video game industry, though, continues to change, and to stay competitive, Sony will need to embrace all change, particularly when thinking ahead to what comes next after the PS5.