After months of rumors and reports, Sony finally announced this morning that it would be altering its PlayStation Plus service later this year. The new version of the subscription platform merges many elements that were already seen on Sony's PlayStation Now program and will now allow subscribers to stream or download a catalog of games spanning from PS1 to PS5. However, when it comes to competing more directly with Xbox Game Pass, Sony has confirmed that it won't be making first-party titles available on day one as Microsoft's service does.
Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, PlayStation head Jim Ryan explained that the idea of adding first-party releases to PlayStation Plus at launch is something that Sony doesn't believe would be good for the company's development pattern. "We feel like we are in a good virtuous cycle with the studios where the investment delivers success, which enables yet more investment, which delivers yet more success," Ryan said. "We like that cycle and we think our gamers like that cycle."
Ryan went on to more directly state that if Sony were to do what Microsoft does with Xbox Game Pass, then it would impact the resources that PlayStation is able to put into its studios. "[In terms of] putting our own games into this service, or any of our services, upon their release... as you well know, this is not a road that we've gone down in the past. And it's not a road that we're going to go down with this new service," he said. "We feel if we were to do that with the games that we make at PlayStation Studios, that virtuous cycle will be broken. The level of investment that we need to make in our studios would not be possible, and we think the knock-on effect on the quality of the games that we make would not be something that gamers want."
Even though this move isn't a shocking one on Sony's behalf, it just goes to reiterate how great of a deal Xbox Game Pass really has become. Although Sony is seemingly trying to now compete with Game Pass more directly with its new PlayStation Plus subscription model, Microsoft will continue to have a leg up on the competition as long as it continues to add new releases on day one.
What do you think about Ryan's comments in relation to this new PS Plus service? Let me know either down in the comments or reach out to me on Twitter at @MooreMan12.