Not Making PS5, PS4 Exclusives Free with PS Plus on Day One Is a Strategy That's Working, Says Sony 1
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Sony’s stance on PS5 exclusives in relation to PS Plus is resolute, and won’t be changing in the near-future. Unlike its main rival Microsoft, the Japanese giant has resisted the temptation to release its major first-party exclusives into its subscription, instead allowing them to enjoy large traditional launches before eventually being rolled into the membership model. This two-pronged approach is enabling the organisation to have its cake and eat it, guaranteeing sizeable revenue upon release while still eventually offering incentive to subscribe to PS Plus at a later date.

Speaking with Games Industry, the firm’s head of subscriptions Nick Maguire weighed in on the manufacturer’s mindset: “We're happy with our strategy. Putting games in a bit later in the life cycle has meant that we can reach more customers 12, 18, 24 months after they have released. We're seeing customers still get excited about those games and jumping in. For us, that's working. Occasionally, there will be an opportunity to invest in a day-and-date like Stray and we will jump on those when they come in. But for us, letting those [first-party] games go out to the platform outside the service first, that's working and that will continue to be our strategy moving forward.”

Sony has been under intense pressure all generation to make its games available at no extra cost with PS Plus like its competitor, but Xbox has admitted that Game Pass cannibalises software sales and has obfuscated the profits of its gaming division, reporting only revenue instead. Furthermore, recent data coming out of the United States suggested that gaming subscription growth has completely stagnated this year, corroborated by the fact that PS Plus has pretty persistently pushed against a ceiling of 50 million active subscribers.