One of the key components of PlayStation’s success since its inception some 25 years ago is how it’s allowed third-party publishers to take centre stage on its systems. If you look back through the history of the brand, franchises like Tomb Raider, Grand Theft Auto, FIFA, and more recently Destiny have all been huge sellers on Sony’s various boxes. And speaking as part of the organisation’s recent investor relations day, boss Jim Ryan explained that the firm allows partners to take 80 per cent of the marketshare on its machines.
This means that the remaining 20 per cent is fulfilled by first-party content, which is designed to differentiate the device. According to the executive, publishers are really happy with the dynamic, and enjoy working with the Japanese giant as a consequence.
It’s really interesting to hear the platform holder speak candidly about this, because it’s a very different business model to Nintendo, for example, where exclusives dominate software sales. Personally, we reckon that Sony’s got the mix just about right – there are more than enough high quality exclusives to look forward to, but they generally either serve niches or are industry-leading in terms of production values.