Sony Boss Explains Why PS Plus Won’t Mimic Xbox Game Pass

A picture of PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan speaking about the PSVR2 during Sony's CES presentation in Las Vegas last January.

“PlayStation’s ‘virtuous cycle’ must never be broken!”
photo: Patrick T Fallon (Getty Images)

So the news is official: Sony’s long-rumored Xbox Game Pass competitor, formerly codenamed “Spartacus,” was revealed earlier today. You can read more about it here. Alongside the announcement, PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan decided it was finally time to explain exactly why The company’s biggest first-party games won’t launch on the same day You start.

in one Games Industry. Biz interview, Ryan spoke about the “good virtuous circle” PlayStation is in right now. According to Ryan, this cycle consists of Sony’s investment in its first-party studios that produce success, which then allows for more investment, which in turn leads to more success. It’s this “virtuous cycle” that PlayStation shouldn’t break, Ryan said. And what Ryan thinks would break it is betting first-party games, like God of War Ragnarokon Tuesday one.

“[In terms of] putting our own games or any of our services on that service after they’re released…as you know, that’s not a route we’ve taken in the past,” Ryan said. “And that’s not a path we’re going to take with this new service. We think doing that with the games that we make at PlayStation Studios breaks that virtuous circle. The level of investment we need to make into our studios would not be possible, and we believe that impacting the quality of the games we make is not something gamers want.”

Ryan said things could change, noting that it wasn’t that long ago that PlayStation started porting games like Last days and Horizon Zero Dawn to the PC. “I look back four years and I think nobody saw this coming.”

“So I don’t want to set anything in stone at this point,” Ryan said. “All I’m talking about today is the approach we’re taking in the short term. The way our publishing model currently works, [putting new games directly onto the new PS Plus] makes no sense. But as we all know, things can change very quickly in this industry.”

PlayStation’s position on adding first-party games to its newly revised subscription service is an obviously stark contrast to what Microsoft has done with Xbox Game Pass. In fact, one could argue that the biggest value proposition of Microsoft’s service is that you can play the biggest Xbox Game Studios-branded games, including Halo infinity and Senua’s Saga: Hellblade 2on launch day for just $10 per month for the regular PC or Xbox Game Pass tiers, or $15 per month for the premium Game Pass Ultimate membership.

In comparison, the highest cost of PS Plus from this June will be $18 per month, although Ryan notes in the interview that over two-thirds of current PlayStation Plus subscribers pay annually. The annual price for this top tier is $120. In return, you get what PlayStation has dubbed the premium tier, which gives you access to a wide variety of yet-to-be-specified PS1, PS2, PS3, and PSP games. Most of these titles can either be downloaded or streamed, although the PS3 games are streamed only.

kotaku has reached out to PlayStation for comment. Sony Boss Explains Why PS Plus Won’t Mimic Xbox Game Pass

Curtis Crabtree

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