One of the biggest issues when releasing a new console is what games to bring out. Usually, developers will choose to create a big, new IP. Or several big, new IPs. For example, with the release of the PS3, games like Motorstorm, Warhawk, etc. were introduced. But if you take a look at the PS4s release, can we say that there are enough new IPs? Sure, we got Knack. But the critics weren't too keen on that one, surprising since there was a lot of hype around it. I'm not saying Knack was a bad game. In fact, I found it very enjoyable and nostalgic of the early PS2 era adventure games. But from the metascore and the reviews I've seen, a lot of other players didn't enjoy it anywhere near as much as I did.
But Knack (of course) wasn't the only PlayStation exclusive at launch. We had another game - Killzone Shadowfall. This game got a pretty decent score in most reviews, but people complained of it being pretty boring and repetitive as a first person shooter. That said, I know for a fact that the overwhelming majority of players enjoyed the game. Not only did it feature great environments, graphics and a strong story - but it had one big thing going for it. Something which provided a lot of sales. The existing Killzone franchise.
And so we come to the question: is it more important for new consoles to focus on existing IPs, or create new ones. Old IPs are easier to sell because of their association with past games, but new ones will define a console and create a new set of console exclusives that can be made in the future. I feel that with the PS4, Sony need to focus a lot more on new IPs. There are some in the works, including Drive Club. But we haven't heard much apart from that. There should have been way more new games to attract people to the console at launch. Instead we got a new IP which people didn't enjoy, and an old one which did decently. A great console like the PS4 deserves more early content.
Why we need new franchises
You could argue that the console's launch has already been an overwhelming success, which is in some ways true. But in order for the PS4 to place itself well above competition I believe that it needs to bring in a lot more new IPs. The best way to go about it? I'm not a game designer, I don't know. But by incorporating the new technology of the PS4, Sony's studios could create whole new genres of games. FPS' have been around for about 20 years. But they're still top of the market. Why not create something which people will be surprised with, something that will utterly change the way people view the Playstation franchise? Something that incorporates the power of the PS4. I really hope we see something like this in the future. Perhaps one day that franchise could sit along side God of War, Ratchet and Clank, Killzone, etc. as one of Sony's big name exclusives.
There are some things that can be done to existing franchises to make them new, exciting and innovative. But you'll always have the people who want them to be exactly like the last game. That's one of the main reasons you need new IPs. You're nowhere near as limited - there's no history and you can start anywhere you want. It's an example people use a lot, but the Call of Duty games really prove my point. They've been criticized non stop for being all the same, and repetitive. But that's what the fans want. They might not admit it, but they want to play the same game every year. And so Activision are only giving the fans what they want. With a new IP, nobody is going to say "I liked the last one better" or "They should have brought back this feature from the last game". It's a great chance for game developers to start fresh.
What do you think?
So, what is your opinion on the matter. Do you think that new IPs are the way forward for Sony, or should they focus on reviving older ones? Perhaps a mixture of both - like they're doing now.
Article by - Ben Corroon
Insert Date: 12/4/2013