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Playstation 5 Console Discussion

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Julius said:

I've been thinking about it over the weekend, and the question which keeps springing to mind is "What the hell are they thinking?", not to mention my continued disapproval of Schreier's reporting stance being that it's fine to leak the existence of secretive projects. Maybe it's just me, but it's very, very rare that the existence of a game is leaked before it's official reveal and actually benefits from it (Mario + Rabbids comes to mind as one of the few examples, and that's simply because people were so against it that it leaking actually had people positioned to be blown away by how it was presented). I think back to Elden Ring's reveal at E3 2019, and everyone just immediately going "Oh, hey, look, it's Elden Ring". Can you imagine just how big that reveal would have been if it had never been leaked beforehand? Instead, I've got friends who are big fans of Game of Thrones and G.R.R. Martin but had no idea the game existed for the longest time, because it never wound up in their social media feeds, because it was expected and it felt like there wasn't nearly as much traction to it as there should have been for a game developed by From Software and worked on (to some extent) by G.R.R. Martin. 

Great post in general but I especially agree with this. The internet seems to adore Schreier, so he'll continue to leak because it makes people notice him.

Edited by Ronnie

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Julius said:

But back to the article itself, yeah, I agree with H-o-T in not liking how Jim Ryan has run PlayStation since taking over. The problem with only having tentpole releases and being this risk-averse is that you end up with, well, what cinema (and the box office in particular) largely became over the last decade: a collection of reboots and sequels founded on already beloved IP decimating smaller projects.

You see Sony's risk-averse strategy with their cookie-cutter exclusives in the PS4 era. The vast majority being story-based third person action/adventure games. Now personally that's one of my favourite genres so I'm fine with it, but there's so little variety in their output these days. 

Edited by Ronnie

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Are we talking about Sony as developers here or publishers? It's hardly uncommon for studios to find a genre they groove with and stick to that. But as publishers they actually published fairly diverse things during the PS4 era that aren't story-driven third person action/adventure; Drive Club, Knack, MLB, Dreams, Sackboy, Everybody's Gone to Rapture, Unfinished Swan, Everybody's Golf etc.

Is it weird TLOS is (was?) being remade? Sure, a little. Is it surprising? No not really. 

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Posted (edited)
40 minutes ago, Ashley said:

Are we talking about Sony as developers here or publishers? It's hardly uncommon for studios to find a genre they groove with and stick to that. But as publishers they actually published fairly diverse things during the PS4 era that aren't story-driven third person action/adventure; Drive Club, Knack, MLB, Dreams, Sackboy, Everybody's Gone to Rapture, Unfinished Swan, Everybody's Golf etc.

Is it weird TLOS is (was?) being remade? Sure, a little. Is it surprising? No not really. 

I can't speak for others, but I'm thinking of publishers. Developers can definitely fall into a genre they excel at, but I can't help but notice that Sony are slowly narrowing the kind of games they give the go-ahead over time. You mention some of the games in the PS4 era, but I can't help but notice that it's, well, noticeably less than the PS3 era (and the PS2 era before that)

Back then, I was under the impression that it was because of increasing difficulty and costs when it comes to game development over the past decade, but if this report is accurate, it shows that Sony are starting to think that only multi-million smash hits are worth investing in.

Which sounds fine from a purely business point of view, but fans who only have access to a Sony console for whatever reason, as well as developers that may want to work with Sony on a project, they may find themselves suffering as a result.

It's actually quite similar to The Pokémon Company's worrying steps in regards to what they helped to fund over the past few years. Outside of the main Pokémon games, what Pokémon titles have there been that didn't have some kind of microtransaction stapled to them? Not many.

It's gotten a little better, what with Rescue Team DX and the upcoming New Pokémon Snap, but it's not as varied as it was back in the days of the DS. I can't help but see similarities between that and this direction Sony is taking. And it's not good.

Edited by Glen-i
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1 hour ago, Ashley said:

Are we talking about Sony as developers here or publishers? It's hardly uncommon for studios to find a genre they groove with and stick to that. But as publishers they actually published fairly diverse things during the PS4 era that aren't story-driven third person action/adventure; Drive Club, Knack, MLB, Dreams, Sackboy, Everybody's Gone to Rapture, Unfinished Swan, Everybody's Golf etc.

Is it weird TLOS is (was?) being remade? Sure, a little. Is it surprising? No not really. 

I don’t think anyone’s calling the TLOS remake surprising. Weird, stupid, a waste of time and effort, maybe but not surprising, especially in this day and age. But as the article suggests it’s a money driven business decision, nothing more. And really pointless given how often they’ve re-released the game.

And re: that list of games, obviously there’s a handful of titles that aren’t story driven third person adventure games but that’s a relatively small list, especially if you only consider their big blockbuster releases. But hey they’ve found a formula that works for them and sells lots, so good for them. I’ve noticed more and more comments about their openworld games getting a bit repetitive and stale now though.

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2 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

I’ve noticed more and more comments about all openworld games getting a bit repetitive and stale now though.

Fixed that for you.

Only a little sorry for that open-goal.

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"story driven third person adventure games" is such a vague description that can describe some extremely different games. Horizon Zero Dawn, The Last of Us, Uncharted, God of War, Ocarina of Time, Super Mario Odyssey, infamous, Fable, Alan Wake, Control, Metroid Other M, Pikmin, Gears of War, Mass Effect.

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It is a vague description but it's also one that happens to fit with pretty much the entirety of the PS4's blockbuster tentpole releases: Horizon Zero Dawn, The Last of Us, God of War, Uncharted, Infamous, Ghost of Tsushima, Spider-Man, Days Gone, Death Stranding. To be fair, Detroit and Ratchet are two that don't fit the mould. 

Like I said, I love those kind of games so I'm not complaining, but I don't think there's any debate that the PS4's AAA exclusives are built to a formula.

19 minutes ago, Glen-i said:

Fixed that for you.

Only a little sorry for that open-goal.

I agree with you actually, but there are exceptions. BOTW and Red Dead 2 at least added to the openworld conversation.

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It is a vague description but it's also one that happens to fit with pretty much the entirety of the PS4's blockbuster tentpole releases: Horizon Zero Dawn, The Last of Us, God of War, Uncharted, Infamous, Ghost of Tsushima, Spider-Man, Days Gone, Death Stranding. To be fair, Detroit and Ratchet are two that don't fit the mould. 
Like I said, I love those kind of games so I'm not complaining, but I don't think there's any debate that the PS4's AAA exclusives are built to a formula.
I agree with you actually, but there are exceptions. BOTW and Red Dead 2 at least added to the openworld conversation.
You say built to a formula but many of those games are very different, and there's a good amount of totally new IPs there too. Compare this to Nintendo who rely on almost all sequels for their big games, or Xbox who have very few exclusives, and they're still doing a much better job than everyone else.

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15 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

Compare this to Nintendo who rely on almost all sequels for their big games

Goal posts being shifted. Ok fine... Horizon is getting a sequel this year, The Last of Us just got a sequel and is/was being remade for some reason, God of War is a sequel, so is Uncharted 4, and the last Infamous, Spider-Man got a sequel last year and is getting another soon. Ditto Ratchet although to it's credit, that's a platformer/shooter. All publishers put out sequels, it's pretty much universal these days. I'm not even sure why we're talking about sequels anyway, nor what "they're still doing a much better job than everyone else" means, or adds to the discussion. The conversation was about Sony under Jim Ryan being risk averse. Big picture wise, there should be zero debate that Playstation have a very samey template when it comes to their blockbuster releases. Obviously the games mix things up. Obviously the nine biggest PS4 games don't play identically, that would be stupid, but there IS a template.

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Posted (edited)
53 minutes ago, Sheikah said:
1 hour ago, Ronnie said:
It is a vague description but it's also one that happens to fit with pretty much the entirety of the PS4's blockbuster tentpole releases: Horizon Zero Dawn, The Last of Us, God of War, Uncharted, Infamous, Ghost of Tsushima, Spider-Man, Days Gone, Death Stranding. To be fair, Detroit and Ratchet are two that don't fit the mould. 
Like I said, I love those kind of games so I'm not complaining, but I don't think there's any debate that the PS4's AAA exclusives are built to a formula.
I agree with you actually, but there are exceptions. BOTW and Red Dead 2 at least added to the openworld conversation.

You say built to a formula but many of those games are very different, and there's a good amount of totally new IPs there too. Compare this to Nintendo who rely on almost all sequels for their big games, or Xbox who have very few exclusives, and they're still doing a much better job than everyone else.

Gotta agree with @Ronnie on the point he just made. Nintendo's biggest IP's may rely on sequels, but those IP's cover a wider variety of genres then Sony's current big hitters.

Zelda has action adventure covered while Smash Bros is a unique take on the fighting game. Mario Kart is a cartoon racer with Animal Crossing being some kind of life sim(?)

And when Nintendo commissions another company to handle one of their IP's, it normally ends up being a different genre. (Hyrule Warriors and Cadence of Hyrule are good examples of this, both Zelda games, both play noticeably differently to the source material)

And then you've got games made by other smaller studios like Kirby (2D Platformer with a focus on the combat more than the actual platforming) and Pokémon (Monster collecting RPG).

It's all come from years of curating a franchise out of them, while Sony tends to drop IP's after a while and rely on third party support to cover other genres.

Edited by Glen-i
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Goal posts being shifted. Ok fine... Horizon is getting a sequel this year, The Last of Us just got a sequel and is/was being remade for some reason, God of War is a sequel, so is Uncharted 4, and the last Infamous, Spider-Man got a sequel last year and is getting another soon. Ditto Ratchet although to it's credit, that's a platformer/shooter. All publishers put out sequels, it's pretty much universal these days. I'm not even sure why we're talking about sequels anyway, nor what "they're still doing a much better job than everyone else" means, or adds to the discussion. The conversation was about Sony under Jim Ryan being risk averse. Big picture wise, there should be zero debate that Playstation have a very samey template when it comes to their blockbuster releases. Obviously the games mix things up. Obviously the nine biggest PS4 games don't play identically, that would be stupid, but there IS a template.

Why am I now talking about sequels? Because you're complaining that the PS4's exclusive games are all very similar ("third person adventure games") and "made to a formula". I'm saying that there's nothing more similar and formulaic than sequels to games we have played before, of which we see many on other consoles. Your list is also incomplete, you're missing off new exclusive games like Bloodborne too. In terms of third person new IP exclusives on PS4 there was Bloodborne, Horizon, Days Gone, Concrete Genie, Ghost of Tsushima, Death Stranding, The Last Guardian, The Order 1886. How many new IP exclusives (that were big games) came out on Switch or X1?

Maybe a lot of Sony's exclusives are third person but they're all very different games, and at least a lot of them are new IPs. You're making the point that Sony are risk averse - yet Sony released far more big new IPs than the other two last gen. Far more.

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Gotta agree with [mention=4353]Ronnie[/mention] on the point he just made. Nintendo's biggest IP's may rely on sequels, but those IP's cover a wider variety of genres then Sony's current big hitters. Zelda has action adventure covered while Smash Bros is a unique take on the fighting game. Mario Kart is a cartoon racer with Animal Crossing being some kind of life sim(?)And when Nintendo commissions another company to handle one of their IP's, it normally ends up being a different genre. (Hyrule Warriors and Cadence of Hyrule are good examples of this, both Zelda games, both play noticeably differently to the source material)And then you've got games made by other smaller studios like Kirby (2D Platformer with a focus on the combat more than the actual platforming) and Pokémon (Monster collecting RPG).It's all come from years of curating a franchise out of them, while Sony tends to drop IP's after a while and rely on third party support to cover other genres.

But that variety comes at the cost of fatigue. Nintendo's big games are mostly sequels to games we have seen time and time again. Can you really talk about diversity in their big games when a lot of that comes from the 10th (or whatever) iteration of Mario Kart? Or Smash, Mario, Zelda, and Pokemon? In terms of staleness or the "seen that before" feeling that diversity is supposed to combat, Nintendo's output simply does not do that, because their series are ancient and made to a formula. The other games you're mentioning like Hyrule Warriors are some of the most stale, overdone games out there, even if more work than normal was put into the Zelda version.

People can complain that there's a lot of third person "adventure" games on PS4 but as you can see, within that category the games can be very different (e.g. compare Bloodborne to The Last of Us, or to Spiderman - completely different games). In fact "third person adventure" is such a ridiculous catch all descriptor that seems to have been made up here to try and win an argument, given how much diversity there can be within that category. It'd a bit like complaining that the SNES had one too many 2D games.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Sheikah said:

But that variety comes at the cost of fatigue. Nintendo's big games are mostly sequels to games we have seen time and time again. Can you really talk about diversity in their big games when a lot of that comes from the 10th (or whatever) iteration of Mario Kart? Or Smash, Mario, Zelda, and Pokemon? In terms of staleness or "seen that before" feel, Nintendo have that down. The games you're mentioning like Hyrule Warriors are some of the most stale, overdone games out there. Warriors games are complete tripe, even if more work than normal was put into the Zelda version.

 

People can complain that there's a lot of third person "adventure" games on PS4 but as you can see, within that category the games can be very different (e.g. compare Bloodborne to The Last of Us). In fact "third person adventure" such a ridiculous catch all descriptor that seems to have been made up here to try and win an argument, given how much diversity there can be within that category. At least a lot of these games are totally new IPs, set in new worlds with new combat mechanics, characters and story.

Well, it's clear that you and I have different views on what constitutes variety.

It seems to me like you prefer to have multiple different flavours of a similar genre, (different settings, characters and mechanics that said different setting might provide), while I would much rather prefer to have different genres completely, even if I have "been there, done that" many times before.

For the record, I completely reject your insinuation that "X series has similar games, so they're all fundamentally the same" but I get the impression that you already guessed that from our previous discussions on that very topic, so I won't bother going through that song and dance again. Agree to disagree?

Edited by Glen-i

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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, Glen-i said:

Well, it's clear that you and I have different views on what constitutes variety.

It seems to me like you prefer to have multiple different flavours of a similar genre, (different settings, characters and mechanics that said different setting might provide), while I would much rather prefer to have different genres completely, even if I have "been there, done that" many times before.

But that's the thing, many are not even the same (or similar) genre. Because "third person adventure" is not a genre, it's a broad term that can describe entirely different games. Spiderman is a completely different genre to TLOU. In fact Ghost of Tsushima is an open world game, whereas Last Guardian isn't. Yet both can be defined as "third person adventure" games. In fact so can Pokemon Sun/Moon, and Zelda, and Mario Odyssey - so I guess Nintendo are putting out too many of these now? I'm sure you can see, this is a pointless and unhelpful way of categorising.

Quote

For the record, I completely reject your insinuation that "X series has similar games, so they're all fundamentally the same" but I get the impression that you already guessed that from our previous discussions on that very topic, so I won't bother going through that song and dance again. Agree to disagree?

I'm saying that it's a false diversity. It's diverse only to newcomers - anyone who has been with Nintendo for the last 20 years will find very little different about their main games.

Ronnie was talking about PS4 games being made to a "formula", which is exactly how games like Smash, Mario, Mario Kart and Pokemon are made.

Edited by Sheikah

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Posted (edited)

Sony released new IP last gen like Horizon and Days Gone primarily because they didn't have much that was recognisable and that would fit the mould for their blockbuster games going forward (PS All Stars Battle Royale might have been a clue there). Now that they do, expect sequels to Horizon, Ghost and Days Gone.

1 hour ago, Sheikah said:

In fact Ghost of Tsushima is an open world game, whereas Last Guardian isn't. Yet both can be defined as "third person adventure" games. In fact so can Pokemon Sun/Moon, and Zelda, and Mario Odyssey - so I guess Nintendo are putting out too many of these now? I'm sure you can see, this is a pointless and unhelpful way of categorising.

Pokemon, Zelda and Odyssey can't be described as story-driven, a qualifier you conveniently left out. And anyway, one is an JRPG, and the latter a platformer. Horizon, God of War, Infamous, Ghost of Tsushima, Days Gone, The Last of Us, Spider-Man, Death Stranding all belong in the same category. Obviously those are the games that Sony's audience respond to, I haven't read Schreier's article, but I assume that's the point he's making. 

I didn't include The Last Guardian because that's actually a very different experience, kudos to them. Same with Ratchet.

But Days Gone and Ghost in particular are prime examples of a formula growing stale, based on the reception to those games. Sony need to mix it up his gen.

Edited by Ronnie

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

Sony released new IP last gen like Horizon and Days Gone primarily because they didn't have much that was recognisable and that would fit the mould for their blockbuster games going forward (PS All Stars Battle Royale might have been a clue there). Now that they do, expect sequels to Horizon, Ghost and Days Gone.

Pokemon, Zelda and Odyssey can't be described as story-driven, a qualifier you conveniently left out. And anyway, one is an JRPG, and the latter a platformer. Horizon, God of War, Infamous, Ghost of Tsushima, Days Gone, The Last of Us, Spider-Man, Death Stranding all belong in the same category. Obviously those are the games that Sony's audience respond to, I haven't read Schreier's article, but I assume that's the point he's making. 

I didn't include The Last Guardian because that actually is a very different experience, kudos to them. Same with Ratchet.

 

Your argument really doesn't make any sense. What does "story-based" even mean? If it has a story that's driving the experience then it's story based, no? So Zelda, Mario, and Pokemon are all story-based games.

If you look at games like Bloodborne where the story is told in a way similar to Metroid Prime (via lore and notes), you can't be suggesting that it's the same category as, say, TLOU? Or Spiderman? The storytelling and depth to the story is so varied between all these games. It's making your attempt to lump together these games as "all the same" seem really silly.

Nobody is playing Ghost of Tsushima and walking away from that thinking the storytelling or presentation of the story is similar to TLOU. Nobody!

Edited by Sheikah
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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

So Zelda, Mario, and Pokemon are all story-based games

No one is playing Mario or Pokemon for the storyline.

People ARE playing The Last of Us, Ghost, God of War, Horizon for it.

And I didn't say story-based, like you said, I said story-driven. Third person adventure games were the story-line fundamentally drives the experience forward.

10 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

If you look at games like Bloodborne where the story is told in a way similar to Metroid Prime (via lore and notes), you can't be suggesting that it's the same category as, say, TLOU? Or Spiderman?

No. Hence why I never included Bloodborne as belonging to the same formula of games.

In the same way that you could fit Mario, Splatoon, Zelda, Animal Crossing, Smash, Xenoblade, Kart, Ring Fit and Mario Party into categories (platformer, shooter, adventure, life sim, fighter, RPG, racer, fitness, party), what genres would you put Horizon, Days Gone, Ghost of Tshushima, Spider-Man, God of War and Infamous in?

Edited by Ronnie

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

No one is playing Mario or Pokemon for the storyline.

People ARE playing The Last of Us, Ghost, God of War, Horizon for it.

People don't play Mario for the story because the story is rubbish. Doesn't mean there isn't a story driving the experience though. There is literally a story and reason given for why you must go and do the things you must do in Mario Odyssey. You're basically criticising the other games for having a good story, not because they are "story-driven games". And that's pretty mad when you think about it - arguing that games are too similar because they all have some depth to their story. You could just as easily argue that Nintendo games are too similar for having basic, shallow stories, no?

Edited by Sheikah
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Posted (edited)

Ok mate. Honestly, I don't even know what we're discussing anymore.

I'm sure you're right. Mario Kart, Splatoon, Zelda, Luigi's Mansion and Ring Fit Adventure are all similar experiences because they have rubbish, shallow stories. 

Moving on...

Edited by Ronnie

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

Honestly, I don't even know what we're discussing anymore.

I'm sure you're right. Mario Kart, Splatoon, Zelda, Luigi's Mansion and Ring Fit Adventure are all similar experiences because they have rubbish, shallow stories. 

Moving on...

No, I'm not arguing that at all - just using your logic in the reverse situation. If games can be criticised as being "too similar" for having stories with depth, then equally we can criticise Nintendo's output for mostly all having too simplistic stories.

I don't agree with any of these criticisms, by the way. Just showing you that this reasoning doesn't make any sense.

Edited by Sheikah
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10 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

If games can be criticised as being "too similar" for having stories with depth

Oh please. I think you know I never said the above. It speaks volumes that you have to resort to doing that to make your point.

Moving on, genuinely this time.

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22 hours ago, Sheikah said:

After checking this out it does indeed sound good, and well received. It is the sort of game that you have to wonder if it might come to Plus though, or get even cheaper down the line.

I've just discovered the joys of Remote Play, so it'll be the perfect game to play in bed (or when the other half is watching TV).

Honestly, I completely underestimated remote play and how excellent it is. I'm just over half way through Shadow of the Colossus (remake) and I've split my time between playing in bed on my Macbook and playing on the TV. If there's lag, it's not noticeable.

 

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Posted (edited)

Something else to consider is that even Sony’s new IPs do tend to follow a very similar design template as already used in their existing games.  I know you’ve all seen the meme picture, but the reason why it’s funny is because it’s based on truth.

All of Sony’s modern western games share very similar characteristics. You’re going to have a crafting system, you’re going to have a skill tree, you’re going to have light RPG mechanics & XP, it’s going to be a 3rd person shooter/action game that is focus tested to hell & back, it’s going to focus primarily on telling a paternalistic story ahead of anything else, hell it’ll probably even have a forest that looks just like the meme picture somewhere along the way! Even Sony’s new IPs are often barely distinguishable from each other in terms of gameplay (not setting; important distinction to make).

Just like with Ubisoft and From Software (now there’s a good analogue to Sony WWS!), Sony struck gold with a winning formula; and by God are they gonna keep milking it. Just like From Software, Sony WWS used to produce all manners of experimental and unique games (not always winners, but certainly a lot of variety and different types of games); but now? Basically everything they make now follows this winning formula, just like with From Software; who now make Souls and nothing else.

The days of Sony WWS making stuff like Puppeteer, The Last Guardian, Playstation All Stars Battle Royale, Fat Princess, Killzone, Tokyo Jungle, The Unfinished Swan, The Eye of Judgement etc are long gone.  Sure, you’ll still get the odd exception to the rule like Rachet & Clank (itself on its 11th entry, with each game sporting near identical gameplay) or Gran Turismo 7/8/9 (however you want to count it); but if there is a new IP coming from Sony? Chances are very high that you’ll be seeing it follow that Winning Formula that they’ve been perfecting ever since Uncharted.

It’s all just so incredibly risk averse. When all of their new IPs play so similarly, are they even new IPs anymore?  Sony’s games are all the safest stuff you could really imagine them making. There’s no risk taking anymore. And nothing personifies that better than the shuttering of Japan Studio.

Edited by Dcubed
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