Are Exclusives the Way to Gamers’ Hearts?
I don’t know about you, but seeing the upcoming PS4 and Xbox One make me feel a bit nostalgic, causing me to think back on what features were “revolutionary” and most importantly, what each system had to offer in terms of launch titles. The PlayStation 3 walked in the door donning 4 exclusive titles; Genji: Days of the Blade, Mobile Suit Gundam: Crossfire (Oh Crossfire, what a disappointment you were), Resistance: Fall of Man, and Untold Legends: Dark Kingdom. On the other side of the fence, the Xbox 360 launched with exclusives: Perfect Dark Zero, Kameo: Elements of Power, Quake 4 and Amped 3.
Exclusive titles have always been important to console gamers, but has it gotten more important over time? In my opinion, yes. I played a 360 most of this past generation, fragging friends in Halo 3, Reach and then 4, hunting down Balverines in Fable 2, and so on. But after awhile, I started to wonder what the PS3 could offer after catching a glimpse at exclusive titles like Heavy Rain, 3d Dot Game Heroes, and Infamous. And I’m not the only one, either. Over time it seemed as if I was hearing more and more people complain about the lack of exclusive titles on the 360 compared to the PS3, and eventually making the jump from the 360 to the PS3.
Think I’m bluffing? Look at the sales for the PS3 versus the 360 overtime. Starting off things weren’t so hot for the Sony’s next gen console, due to it being released about one year after the 360, the PS3 sold 5 million units less than it’s opponent. That 5 million eventually grew to 8 million, but after a few software updates and console redesigns sales began to rise consistently for the PS3, eventually leading it to outsell the 360 in the year of 2012 by 1.63 million units, and in just the first 5 months of 2013 the PS3 already sold 1 million more units.
Now I know that not everyone who has bought a PS3 in the past few years started with the 360, but still. I can confidently say that I bet a good amount of those sales were indeed from post-360 gamers. Back to the point, though. Exclusives. One thing that anybody who’s been following the console war knows that the PS3 offers the most for first and third party exclusives. While technically speaking, the PS3 only offers 20 more exclusive titles than the 360 (143 on the PS3 to 123 on the 360), The PS3 offers a greater quantity of memorable exclusives like Little Big Planet, Heavy Rain, Sly Cooper, Uncharted, Infamous, God of War and so on. While really the only 360 exclusives that have stuck out in my opinion would be Halo, Fable and Gears of War.
With that being said, it seems as if this year the big ticket item for the upcoming consoles were the exclusives, with the announcements that the PS4 will be bringing in 20 exclusives in its first year and the Xbox One bringing in 15. The 360 never made too big of a splash with exclusives since it already had Halo, Fable and Quake to work with, and eventually Gears of War, but once as time progressed and more exclusive titles made themselves at home on the PS3 it seems as if sales began to shift from the 360 to the PS3.
So do exclusives mean more this time around? Only time will tell, but I can tell you that I’m looking forward to playing a new batch of Infamous!