Unlike its competition, Sony’s never really had an official mascot. While you associate the likes of Super Mario and Master Chief with Nintendo and Xbox respectively, PlayStation’s had a rotating cast of key heroes, from Crash Bandicoot right the way through to Nathan Drake. But which character best encapsulates the PlayStation 4 era?
We’re going to posit that Astro Bot has become the face of Sony’s current console. The character, who first appeared in free PS4 tech demo The Playroom, has appeared in several titles now – including the most recent Astro Bot Rescue Mission. Interestingly, he was not designed by Japan Studio but by retired Firesprite employee Garv Corbett, as we learned in our interview early in the year.
While he hasn’t exactly starred in any major marketing materials, it’s easy to forget the influence that The Playroom had on the system’s early success. You may, for example, recall system architect Mark Cerny showing the title on the Jimmy Fallon show – a demo which would eventually go viral. The augmented reality sampler was then used by many as part of live streaming shows early in the gen.
Astro Bot feels deeply weaved into PlayStation’s branding. The emotes on his facemask, for example, use exactly the same shade of blue as the light bar on the DualShock 4, and his body is shaded similarly to the PlayStation VR headset. Moreover, when he attacks enemies using his rocket boots, foes explode into showers of triangle, circle, cross, and square.
Now he’s not the only answer here, of course, as Sony often has multiple mascots – like we alluded earlier in the article. Aloy, during Horizon: Zero Dawn’s launch year, very much became the face of PlayStation for a while; Kratos, with his big bushy beard, and Spider-Man have shared that role so far in 2018. There’s also Nathan Drake to consider, and Ellie’s still to play a big role.
But some of these characters have roots in other generations; others aren’t even PlayStation property to begin with. Astro Bot feels like the face of the PS4 to us; he’s the Toro of the modern era as far as we’re concerned. Maybe he needs a few more games to really cement his status; if they’re all as good as the last one then we’ll take as many as the company can realistically make.
Who do you think is the mascot of the PS4 generation? Are you a fan of Astro Bot at all? Shake the cute little character out of your DualShock 4 and into the comments section below.
Who do you think is the mascot of the PS4 era? (117 votes)
Ratchet & Clank
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