GameSkinny

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.

by

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.

Originally Published Jul. 5th 2014

Featured Columnist

A gaming journalism veteran of 14 years, a confirmed gamer for over 30 years, and a lover of fine literature and ridiculously sweet desserts.



Comments
  • 1
    mze_5479 3 weeks ago
    quote: "At no point in owning those Xbox consoles did I feel like anything more than a faceless dude with a wallet."

    Then you missed creating an avatar...
    by the way: ps3 was much more expensive.. remember the kaz hirai words: people should do overtime to achieve their newest most wanted system.
    rofl.. if you really think that sony cares...think again. thx

    by the way: www.spiele-maschine.de knows better ;)
    Last edited 3 weeks ago
  • 1
    Hyperion_7556 2 weeks ago
    Just to add to your comment whit this

    "It’s probably too cheap…" (Ken Kutaragi on the $599 PS3, 2007)

    And for more

    http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=485754
  • 1
    DT_5644 3 weeks ago
    @mze_5479

    Both are businesses, the end goal is money regardless, but keep in mind that the PS3 was still sold at a loss throughout most of its life, despite being more expensive.
  • 1
    mze_5479 3 weeks ago
    Then sony should rethink their business strategies.really.
    By the way: I think ps3 was the worst successor ever.
    Not only because of pricing, but because of missing must haves and to many strange decisions. First the backwards compatibility that went away to push hd-remakes (like now), then all those card reader slots nobody needed - but no slots for dualshock2 joypads or Ps2 memory cards. ftw?!
    A system close to the jag but with better third party support. ;)
    And no, I didn't like heavy rain or playstation all-stars battle royale, modnation racers or little big planet. no. really not.
    If I look at my psone collection I feel ashamed for the PS3.
    I´m a Gamer since 1979...
    Last edited 3 weeks ago
  • 1
    Jonah Thrillz 3 weeks ago
    Based on past events Micro$oft is all about the money. Last year's DRM fiasco shows what they're really after. Yeah people said they since changed their policy but in reality they only changed because their Xbox revenues were being threatened and there was viable competition.

    I shudder to think what would have happened last year if Sony decided to get out of the console business.

    In the end I don't cry for Micro$oft. They make BILLIONS each year and they can survive losing XBone and start again with the Xbox Two.
  • 1
    Random_2282 3 weeks ago
    I'm confused as to what you are referring to as why Alan Wake would have done better on PS3. Are you saying that PS fans enjoy exclusives more? If so, you're an idiot
  • 1
    Justyn_2189 2 weeks ago
    He means the genre the game is.. Typically games like Alan Wake sell really well on the Playstation Console, whereas the xbox seems to be more of a heavy shooter based console (not that either of these are indications that it is all you will find, it is just what most people seem to be drawn to on the respective systems)

    He was basically saying that Alan Wake would have sold better on the Playstation, because of the genre, just like Killzone would probably sell better on the Xbox, for instance.. because its a shooter. See what I mean?
  • 1
    Gamersledge 3 weeks ago
    I liked the read -- you may wish to think about a clearer title that explains it's an OpEd (but of course it lured me here, so kudos on it working).

    I don't understand why people just flame. He's stating his opinion and it is no less valid than yours. It's well written, and he explains at the top why Alan Wake would probably have fared better as a PS exclusive - Sony would support it even if it doesn't make money.
  • 60
    Fathoms_4209 3 weeks ago
    Featured Columnist
    Thanks, but we all need to accept that unfortunately, a lot of gamers online are hateful, hostile individuals. I'm not really sure why this is, but I have a few theories.

    I've reached the point where I simply state the opinion and leave it at that, with no further commentary. Works better that way. :)
  • 1
    Eagles83 3 weeks ago
    I feel like this is an obvious point but it seems like a bad business decision to support an idea when they think it might not be successful. Investing in new ideas and new talent is a good thing and no one can argue with that. However an investment should only be made if there is believed to be a good return on it. Sony is given props for this in the article because it is the "nice" thing to do but I'm not so sure that was the goal. It could easily be that Sony thought the games would be successful but it just didn't pan out that way. Sony has been terrible about promoting games on their platform which has lead to less than stellar sales on some great games. If the author of this article is correct and Sony did it willingly knowing that they would lose money then I would say they need to change their leadership structure.
  • 1
    PlaystationBro 3 weeks ago
    Im a big Sony fan, but you give them too much credit. Im sorry. Both companies are scum. Sony has simply made a few more generous decisions over the years. "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." is this assuming that those who purchased an xbox don't appreciate that sort of effort? definitely a theory ..
  • 1
    tyler_9009 3 weeks ago
    ya sony cared about the customer when they fixed peoples ps3 consoles after getting the yellow light of death oh wait no they didn't that's why friend switched from a ps3 to xbox 360 cause sony didn't even care to help him out when his console broke because of there malfunctioning console. Also and bringing up journey like it was impossible to come out on the 360 is idiotic where do you think indies started out on the console space that was on xbox. Alan wake would have done better on the ps3 is this a joke theres a reason remedy has stayed with xbox and thats because they love working with them. This guy must have forgot the whole 600 dollars for the ps3 at launch at the sony pr team saying go geta second job so you can afford this console. Also I love the irony from the words in your comment box "comment breaker" which is used from combo breaker from killer instinct a title xbox revived from the grave and made into a great game
    Last edited 3 weeks ago
  • 1
    jaster_7572 3 weeks ago
    Sony isn't taking a loss on purpose. Sony is taking losses because most of their exclusive games aren't that great. The better the graphics the more generic the gameplay is the Sony way.

    Argue that point all you want but its true. The only sorta exception is naughty dog but their games win on story not gameplay.

    Sony exclusives have and always will be less hardcore with less new gameplay but they will always be great to look.at.

    That's why their exclusives don't generally make money
  • 60
    Fathoms_4209 3 weeks ago
    Featured Columnist
    Not even remotely close to accurate. Sony exclusives are head-and-shoulders above Microsoft's at all times. Xbox is the ultimate console for casuals for a reason.
  • 1
    Christopher _8821 3 weeks ago
    Sony & Nintendo are my 2 favorite companies.I've been done with Xbox after my 360 died 15 months after I bought it. I'm glad I stuck with PS3 instead, and now Wii U is getting really kickass games like Xenoblade Chronicles X
  • 1
    Aaron_3556 3 weeks ago
    If Sony is taking a loss on a significant portion of their games, then they are making poor business decisions. They are not a charity for gamers they are a business. If you think they are in it for something other than money, you are incredibly naive. Of course Sony and Microsoft want to bring the best experience possible to their customers because that turns into more revenue, but neither of them is going to support something that they fully expect to lose them money in the long run. If they did that, they would not be the massive, successful corporations that they are today.
  • 1
    Mel_8878 3 weeks ago
    You know articles like this does only one thing. Fuel pointless fanboy comments especially from the target console. These articles doesn't help sells or anything else. People will buy what they think is hot. Last Gen Xbox 360 was the system to have primary USA. This Gen is shaping up to be PS4. In the end it don't matter because last Gen PS3 put up comparable numbers in sales, world wide. Xbox One is not rule out this Gen and its still early. Both sides will argue the strengths of their system of choice vs it's competitor. I've been gaming a long time far back as atari black and white pong. The one thing I know you either buy all the consoles and feel complete or stop looking over your shoulder and enjoy your system of choice. I pray to GOD almighty one day I will see some kind of universal console. Because I think it really stupid to own 3-4 systems to play Mario, Halo and god of war. We lose companies win no matter what the brand.
    Last edited 2 weeks ago
  • 1
    multiplat_2859 2 weeks ago
    I feel like the title of this article should be changed. "And This is Why Sonys PR is better Than Microsofts."

    I Kind of feel like this is a love letter. I love my PS4 but come on....
    Last edited 2 weeks ago
  • 1
    ODDERZ 2 weeks ago
    Too much Sony love and opinion in this, for me. I know, I know, it's an opinion piece, but it lacks any real facts. Sony are hardly the only company to take risks: First off, Kinect was a HUGE risk. Sony didn't take any risks hardware wise, all their systems have been expensive and unimaginative during the PS3 era, save for PS Move, which is just a Wii clone. We all know that.

    On that subject, the Wii was probably the single biggest risk any game company took on in the last decade, and it was a huge success. Wii U, not so much, but still.

    Giving Sony way too much credit. Don't get me wrong, I love Sony and the PS brand, much more than Microsoft or the Xbox, but this is just kinda bullshit.
  • 1
    netmaniac73 2 weeks ago
    sonny hellp new people on the first game not looking on the profit of that game but in the future of the industry.
  • 1
    Tony D_8938 2 weeks ago
    Way to state a thesis and then not support it at all.

    Remember the big embarrassing Red Ring situation where Microsoft spent a bajillion dollars repairing consoles for no charge?

    Remember when the PS3 had the yellow light and Sony said "sorry about your luck"?

    Sorry, but my launch 360 still works because they fixed it 5 years after I bought it. My launch PS3 doesn't.
    Last edited 2 weeks ago
  • 60
    Fathoms_4209 2 weeks ago
    Featured Columnist
    You're not serious.

    The Xbox 360 was widely considered to be one of the worst consumer electronic products in history. Not just in video games, but in all of electronics history. The top 5 major retailers were reporting 33% failure rates for the first FOUR YEARS of the 360's reign. MS didn't offer to fix anything for free for a very long time; in the first years, when they LIED to people about not being able to fix the problem (just to inflate their sales numbers), they forced you to pay $150 to fix it.

    The YLoD issue resulted in a maximum of about a 5% failure rate reported by retailers. It disappeared in the first year. The Xbox 360 failed and failed and kept failing, and you're honestly going to compare the two? I mean.....LMAO.
  • 1
    h_5159 2 weeks ago
    why does it always come to this = microsoft vs. sony??? yes you are biased,
  • 1
    gamestate 2 weeks ago
    Wonder if this article will incite the xtots.....(reads comments) yep called that one.
  • 1
    Mason_1653 2 weeks ago
    I laugh at the Microsoft fans trying to defend their console. It amazes me that xbox fans think they have exclusives that are actually worth playing. There is hardly a difference between CoD and the Halo series. After Halo 2 the series hit rock bottom. Let's not also forget that your launch Xbox 360 didn't even have built in wireless! You had to buy 60$ for an adapter. The first adapter was so shitty that they had to release a new version of it. Let's not forget that "Xbox Parties" killed gaming on the Xbox. No longer can you hear your random teammates because they are too busy talking dirty to each other in a party. I switched from Xbox to Ps3 after my Xbox broke for the 4th time and Microsoft would not repair it for free. Bought The Last of Us and a Ps3. Ps3 got the yellow light and Sony shipped me a new one and all I had to do was ship the broken one back.
  • 55
    Rothalack 2 weeks ago
    Staff Editor
    Let me just drop this here real quick... http://goo.gl/yiMyu4

    I feel better now.
  • 3
    topher339 2 weeks ago
    Honestly, I'm really just tired of people arguing that Sony listens while Microsoft doesn't. Regardless of whether or not it's true it won't change. One side will never be ever to convince the other either.
  • 1
    honkyjesus 2 weeks ago
    Ultimate N4G console flamewar piece.
  • 1
    name_8541 2 weeks ago
    I totally agree.
  • 1
    Daniel Su 2 weeks ago
    Wow you just got told

    http://www.gamezone.com/originals/2014/07/07/rebuttal-does-sony-care-more-about-gamers-than-microsoft

    You are in no means a journalist at all. You should even have the jobs if you're going to make stupid claims like that. I really hope you don't do this at major news reporters. because they will sure fire you for it
  • 1
    Zep_fan_81 2 weeks ago
    YES YES YES! Well said. I had the same sort of experience, ditched PS2, went to the Xbox360, 6 consoles later and Im back with PS4. All is right in my little world once more. Well burnt by microsoft on the console front, god help anyone going with them. However, everything else other than the consoles they do is perfectly fine with me. Cant win 'em all microsoft.
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