In the next-gen console war between Sony and Microsoft, the two companies have adopted two completely different strategies. In sales deficit, the American is highlighting its Xbox Game Pass service to attract new players. The Japanese, for its part, recorded record sales with each new model (except the PS3), so it was betting on exclusives that had become popular.
Often mentioned (or even claimed by some players) the arrival of a service comparable to Game Pass on Playstation consoles has always been swept away by Sony. For the Japanese, this formula was not part of his strategy and did not correspond to his philosophy.
Against all expectations, in an interview with Tass, the President of Sony Interactive Entertainment announced that Sony was working well on a service competing with Xbox Game Pass. At the question “How Sony intends to respond to Microsoft and its Xbox Game Pass”, Jim Ryan replies:
There are indeed things to come, but not yet today. We have PlayStation Now which is our subscription service, and which is available in a number of markets.
This statement inevitably caused a sensation. Because this year more than ever, Sony and Microsoft have adopted a completely different strategy for the launch of their Xbox Series and PS5.
A Game Pass on PS5? Yes, but…
Microsoft and Sony therefore adopt two philosophies to (re) conquer players. If the Japanese already offers services with PS Now and PS +, the offer is far from reaching the level of an Xbox Game Pass.
For now, Sony offers access to a catalog of old games via its subscription. For its part, Microsoft is banking on its development studio acquisition strategy and makes the latest games available to Game Pass subscribers from the day they are released. The icing on the cake, the Game Pass Ultimate formula gives access to the EA Play service including successful licenses such as FIFA, NBA Live or Madden.
It is difficult to know what Sony Interactive Entertainment is preparing to counter this Xbox Game Pass. Some observers imagine a more complete PS + service, including more recent games. From there to saying that Sony will launch a Game Pass in PS5 sauce, we are not there.
First because Japanese do not have the financial resources to bear the economic losses of such a service. Microsoft has said it repeatedly, the Game Pass is not profitable but allows it to bring players into its world, on its consoles, with its services.
Then because launching a Game Pass similar to Microsoft’s would be a 180 ° turn compared to its strategy based on exclusives. Sell an exclusive game 80 euros or offer it for free in a subscription at 10 euros per month? The question is quickly answered.