News Article

Wait, Japan Almost Got the PlayStation 4 First?

Posted by Kell Andersen

Missed it by that much

A few days ago, we reported on a decidedly average Japanese advertisement for Sony's next-gen marvel. Apart from its patently ho-hum premise, the biggest problem with the commercial was that it almost seemed to antagonise the long suffering Japanese public over the fact that they won't be getting the shiny black box until 22nd February. To add insult to injury, Sony Computer Entertainment Japan boss Hiroshi Kawano has recently revealed that there were initially talks to bring the PS4 to the Land of the Rising Sun before the rest of the world.

"The company staff love PlayStation – you could call them a group of loyal gamers, themselves – so there was a strong opinion to 'release [the PS4] in Japan first'," Kawano stated in an interview with Weekly Famitsu."[The release date] was something that we all thoroughly debated and decided upon." Evidently, it made the right choice – the machine has sold an astronomical 4.2 million units as of 28th December – but we doubt that those astounding figures will do much to assuage angry Japanese fans.

Perhaps Kawano's surprisingly sincere apology will. "All we can do now is show through our actions that [Sony] cares very deeply for its customers in Japan," he concluded. "We hope to continue with this effort." Do you sympathise with your Japanese peers, or are you too busy trying to track down the elusive console yourself? Make a ruckus in the comments section below.


User Comments (20)



get2sammyb said:

As a European, I do sympathise to a point - but like you point out in the article, they made the right decision. Not only was it imperative that PlayStation got a good start against Xbox One, but it's also ensured that it's going to have big games like Yakuza ready in time for the Japanese launch.



Gemuarto said:

The good thing for japanese gamers is that they will not starve like US and EU players. With all those projects.... Dynasty Warriors 8, Final Fantasy XIV, Deep Down, Ryu ga Gotoku: Ishin, MGS, Drive Club. So many goodies at launch window.



Bad-MuthaAdebisi said:

Sony has clearly taken advantage of the fact that Japan don't like Xbox. I think its a disgrace to make them wait 3 months longer than the US or EU. Money is money though.



InsertNameHere said:

@RyoHazuki Sony explained why they released the PS4 in the west first. It was because aside from Knack, the PS4 had only western games, which don't do very well in Japan.



Bad-MuthaAdebisi said:

@BornOfEvil I suppose, but who is to blame for this? It still stinks regardless. The only opinion that matters is the Japanese publics. I have no idea how they feel. I imagine miffed is about right.



Cyrso said:

Well there were no Japanese games ready.

Plus the competition is not as strong in Japan, so they definitely should have priotiized the western markets. They made the right (and obvious) choice.



goonow said:

Ya it probably was because sony did not want to let the xbox 1 base get too big in north america. Microsoft is the only other company in the world with a competing console so why not bring the fight to their home turf. Sony knows japan doesnt like microsoft.



CrazyOtto said:

I thought Japan was going to get it first myself, but it was a smart idea to not release it there until 2014 because the launch line up would've been entirely western games except for Knack. Even their February 22nd launch line seems to lack Japanese games. I think alot more Japanese gamers will start picking up PS4s during the Holiday season of 2014 when the system has alot more Japanese games.



Gamer83 said:


I agree, unless some really changes in the next month, which is highly unlikely, the Japanese launch is severely lacking titles that appeal to that market. I'm very interested to see how the Japanese react to the PS4. It may have a strong launch week then drop off or it could be a complete disaster from the start. Either way, just looking at the early games, it's going to be a really tough sell especially when you see what's on the way for PS3 and Wii U.



Gemuarto said:

@Gamer83 Japan learning to apreciate western games. I even remember dialog about that in some anime....=) Also, don't forget about games like Natural Doctrine or Guilty Gear(if I remember correctly).. And if Deep Down is good, it really can become system seller. It's Dark Souls + Monster Hunter after all. Very good combination for F2P game. Not sure about you, but for me, japanese start is much better than US and EU.



charlesnarles said:

@get2sammyb @Gemuarto I agree too. I'm almost getting bored of the lack of selection. If Japan had swapped places with NA then we'd have had the W_D and DC launch we all wanted. Not complaining tho! Nov 15 ruled



KAPADO said:

The land of the rising sun has angered the bluray Gods by siding with house Nintendo. M
So this is the price they pay.



Gamer83 said:


It's basically the NA, EU launches but with a few games that were delayed. So I guess you could say it's better. Still don't think there's that much that will sell the system to the Japanese public though. I'd love to be wrong because I want PS4 to be a massive success everywhere but it could be a real slow start for the system in its home country. We'll see.



Gemuarto said:

@Gamer83 I read that first two piles of pre-orders were sold like in 30 minutes =). So, maybe Japan is hungry for some nextgen. But, yeah, there are not so many japanese games, though. But as for me, I like to play all of them =).



Gamer83 said:


I'd like to play that Yakuza game. And Deep Down is interesting, it could be a big game in all territories. Given that it's free-to-play though, I'm still not so sure about it. Some f2p are really good, others are kind of meh.



DoublezZ01 said:

They got a whole bunch of awesome games and exclusives already on Ps3 and will have all the ones that should have been ready on PS4 when we got it on there launch day so they will be fine! =)

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