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And This is Why Sony Cares More About Gamers Than Microsoft

PlayStation exhibits a continued determination to support new and budding minds in the industry...even if it means a financial loss.

I've been saying it for years:

When comparing the customer service history between Sony and Microsoft in the gaming industry, the two companies are night and day. They just are.

I'm not saying Microsoft doesn't care one whit about gamers. I'm not saying they haven't produced excellent games for the Xbox platforms. I'm not saying Sony hasn't screwed over their customers more than once. There is no such thing as 100 percent "good" or "evil" in the world of business, and there will always be questionable practices on the massive corporate levels.

But the proof is in the pudding, as they say:

Sony takes a loss on most of its games, just so so they can continue to support fresh, promising talent

When I read that story at DualShockers, I wasn't exactly surprised. Anyone who has been an avid PlayStation fan for years is aware of Sony's commitment to games, which is why the PS2 is quite possibly one of the greatest consoles ever made, and why the PSN is frequently loaded with wildly innovative and creative titles you won't find anywhere else. However, I did find myself asking this question: Could Microsoft make the same statement? Could they say they willingly take a loss on six or seven out of every ten games they produce, just to give young minds a chance?

I bet not. The reason is simple: When you look at which company has taken the lion's share of the risks over the past decade or so, it's undoubtedly Sony. There have been a few exclusive, highly imaginative and accomplished titles on Xbox Live, but not a fraction of what we've seen on the PSN. Another question: Would we ever have seen something like Journey on Live? I'm not saying it's impossible but the point is, we haven't.

And it's entirely because of the PlayStation brand's dedication to innovation and creativity.

Companies always strive for money, but how they go about business differs drastically

The blanket statement that "all companies are just out for money" makes me nuts. Of course they're out for money; if they don't make it, they're not in business. It's a ridiculously obvious statement, but it's annoying because it implies that all companies conduct business the same way. Clearly, that isn't the case.

The way Sony conducts business, as opposed to the way Microsoft conducts business, are two very different things. That's why it's night and day to compare them. That's why PlayStation fans are quick to point to Sony's commitment to the consumer above all else, and why Microsoft fans had to suffer through four years of a completely broken piece of gaming equipment, with the manufacturer lying the entire time. MS claimed they didn't know what was wrong and they couldn't fix the "Red Ring of Death" issue, which nobody with a brain believes. They simply opted not to fix it because it inflated Xbox 360 sales numbers due to multiple repeat purchases.

This has also led to two very different groups of dedicated fans. I'm willing to bet Alan Wake would've fared better had it been a PlayStation exclusive, because PlayStation fans are the ones who appreciate that sort of effort. Maybe I'm wrong; it's just a theory.

But if you want to think your desires matter as a gamer, there's little reason to side with Microsoft, and many reasons to side with PlayStation

As a consumer, I'd like to think I'm being heard every now and then. I'd like to believe that despite the size of any given company, they still appreciate the money they receive from their customers. This is the sort of simple give-and-take relationship upon which business is based. I owned the Xbox and Xbox 360, and I owned the PlayStation consoles. At no point in owning those Xbox consoles did I feel like anything more than a faceless dude with a wallet. On the other hand, as a PlayStation owner, I've always felt just a little more connected to the brand.

Call it biased, if you want. I call it simple observation and a logical reaction to the facts.

Published Jul. 5th 2014
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