Shawn Layden interview - on Sony's first party development, streaming, E3, acquisitions and more

nib95

Member
Oct 28, 2017
9,991
Seems to be a weird Narrative going around that Sony is somehow stumbling and setting themselves up for failure in the US media... No idea why. Sony's momentum is as strong as ever going into next gen.
When having the best selling console of the year, in its 5th year of release, at almost it's original launch price, still isn't enough lol.
 
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gofreak

gofreak

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Oct 26, 2017
2,208
But I'd argue that Sony has bucked that trend this generation though, from Wipeout Omega to Shadow of the Colossus Remake to Matterfall to Bound to Ratchet to Everybody's Golf to Gravity Rush 2 to the PlayLink stuff. Sure they had the big mega-budget AAA stuff, but they've had plenty of medium-budget stuff along the way too.

This latest comment makes it sound like a more recent decision to put resource in to fewer, bigger games.
Well, he says this was an orientation they started on 3-4 years ago. A lot of what you mention came within a window of the last 2 years - and some of it is xdev stuff (which Layden might not be count as WWS - maybe xdev is as interested in 'medium' as ever).

2018 was a smaller schedule than 2017 - and the 'medium' stuff seemed to come from PSVR last year - but it's hard to separate out how much of that might be a philosophical change between those two years in particular versus a winding towards the PS5 transition.
 

Masagiwa

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Jan 27, 2018
3,155

pswii60

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Oct 27, 2017
8,934
UK
Not to me, to me it just sounds like they aren’t going to rush big games out to meet a deadline and that’s exactly what they’ve done since a few years after PS4 came out. They learned their lesson with PS3/DriveClub about bringing games out before they were ready.

Didn’t seem to hint at anything AA related to me so I’m sure that will remain just how it is now and I agree they’ve done an excellent job filling gaps with those smaller games.
Driveclub was a delayed a year, to be fair.

I just don't want Sony to only focus on the AAA stuff, that's all. Because some of their best games are AA. The fact that they stopped funding the smaller games from Housemarque had me concerned, and now these comments. But Concrete Genie is still a thing, as is the Medievil remake, and they're working on plenty of smaller games for VR, so perhaps there's nothing to worry about.
 

SolidSnakex

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,875
When having the best selling console of the year, in its 5th year of release, at almost it's original launch price, still isn't enough lol.
You can see why Youtubers and streamers are starting to be the go to for many gamers. Because you see the traditional press more or less lives in their own world that isn't actually a reflection of what's going on in gaming.
 

Devilgunman

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,413
Shawn made really good points about state of E3 and it deserves its own thread imo.

So the trade show became a trade show without a lot of trade activity. The world has changed, but E3 hasn't necessarily changed with it.

And with our decision to do fewer games -- bigger games -- over longer periods of time, we got to a point where June of 2019 was not a time for us to have a new thing to say. And we feel like if we ring the bell and people show up here in force, people have expectation "Oh, they're going to tell us something."

We are progressing the conversation about, how do we transform E3 to be more relevant? Can E3 transition more into a fan festival of gaming, where we don't gather there to drop the new bomb? Can't it just be a celebration of games and have panels where we bring game developers closer to fans?

Almost like Comic-Con?
Yes, that's probably the trajectory it needs to go to maintain relevance.
 

JINX

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,037
Thats a clickbaity article title, he also doesn't hint at anything. Just the usual answer Sony gives, nothing new or interesting tbh. I wish the interviewer had dug deeper, this was the perfect time to try and find out what Sony's strategy for the year is. It sounds like we aren't getting anything major until well after E3, outside of media events for specific games (Days Gone etc.) E3 won't feel the same without Sony tbh, I wouldn't mind if we got a similar press conference to last year. All the games/gameplay shown last year was great, it was the presentation that was bad.
 

Rosebud

Member
Apr 16, 2018
3,405
I hope they keep doing AA stuff.

About studios, one that people don't talk much is genDESIGN. Fumito Ueda games are gems.
 

Riderz1337

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,616
Ewww
Don't know why anyone would hope a 3rd party be brought.
There are other great franchises and original I. P blueprint could do.
How come you are so against large publishers buying third party devs all of a sudden? Also, Bluepoint has a history of working with Sony so it wouldn't be something completely out of left field... Their last two games were Sony exclusives that were Remastered.
 

Windrunner

Restless Dreams
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Oct 25, 2017
3,656
That headline is really confusing: Sony have been excellent at putting out many lower budget, smaller games this generation especially with Playlink and PSVR.
 

Sonicfan059

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,903
Driveclub was a delayed a year, to be fair.

I just don't want Sony to only focus on the AAA stuff, that's all. Because some of their best games are AA. The fact that they stopped funding the smaller games from Housemarque had me concerned, and now these comments. But Concrete Genie is still a thing, as is the Medievil remake, and they're working on plenty of smaller games for VR, so perhaps there's nothing to worry about.
Driveclub still came out without servers being ready and I’m not really worried. I took it to mean a philosophy they’ve done for a few years already. We shall see but they’ve seemingly done less bigger games for a few years now.
 

tyfon

Member
Nov 2, 2017
3,131
Norway
Hopefully they won't buy studios but rather expand on their existing ones and build new ones.
It really sucks when the big ones buy studios and make their games exclusive.
I have no problem with fostering internal studios and having them making exclusives though or contracting out exclusive games to independent studios (like everyone does with Insomniac).

Also this is the moneyquote:
"I don't want to get into me-too, it seems like I think the world's got all the battle royale it needs right now."

I 100% agree with that, it would be such a waste of money for the console makers to get into that now!
 

MrKlaw

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,923
On this basis, I think we can write off the idea that they're having a separate event with announcements in the middle of the year. Still hope for PSX in November though.

Regardless, I think Sony has quickly forgotten the impact their own press conferences had on this generation. The disc-sharing skit and the live audience reaction went viral and Xbox One has had to live with that 6 years down the line.
I expect some agreement was made with the E3 people to avoid directly competing . - at least this year.

Even without announcments they could have had booth presence at E3 - they still have plenty of big hitters coming out, and some that will be just about ready to either have playable on the floor or at least demoable behind closed doors at the event. So presumably they will have some kind of event - even if press only - sometime around/after E3 to show off 2019 holiday titles at least?
 
Oct 31, 2017
4,657
Sony buying the Silent Hill and Metal Gear IP would be smart.

They have a structure in place to make new games
Konami still uses those IPs for their Pachinko machines, as well as their newest Metal Ger game last year, so that's not happening.

But that reminds me: one thing that I've realized after playing RE2make and RE7 and all that, is that I'd LOVE them to create more survival-horror games. The Last of Us I do include in that due to the item management, sneaking, and proclivity to avoid combat if necessary, but man, I'd love if they worked on another AA/AAA horror game. It's right up their alley. They're not doing Siren next since its creator, Toyama, said he's working on an action-adventure, but I'd be interested in that kind of item-management fun considering they have the pipeline for it.
 

RoninStrife

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,265
Or MS could buy them, there is nothing suggesting Sony will buy them.
The thought of MS buying them, you seem fine with MS acquiring 3rd parties, but not Sony. Weird.
History has shown us MS has worked to creatively bankrupt studios (forcing them to make 1 i. p etc forever), not sure why your opinion sounds more optimistic when it involves ms.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,297
I like that they brought up military. Being able to acquire games overseas both physically and digitally has been a godsend. Yeah, it sucks sometimes when a big game isn’t available to purchase physically, but at least I have the opportunity to download it if possible. It does sound like Sony is getting ready to make some moves in regards to studios and getting ready for PS5 though.
 

CosmicSea

Alt account
Banned
Feb 5, 2019
502
You didn't seem very against 3rd party acquisitions when Microsoft did it.
lol
On this basis, I think we can write off the idea that they're having a separate event with announcements in the middle of the year. Still hope for PSX in November though.

Regardless, I think Sony has quickly forgotten the impact their own press conferences had on this generation. The disc-sharing skit and the live audience reaction went viral and Xbox One has had to live with that 6 years down the line.
I think this is exaggeration. They are skipping e3 this year not forever......they will be back when it is relevant to their release schedule and when they need to be.
 
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gofreak

gofreak

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Oct 26, 2017
2,208
That headline is really confusing: Sony have been excellent at putting out many lower budget, smaller games this generation especially with Playlink and PSVR.
As much as that's true, I think it's also true that if you were to compare the size of their publishing slate in the PS3 years on average to the size of their PS4 slate on average, there is a notable shrink in numbers. So it might be a relative historical reference more than an absolute one that's comparing to others today.

(If that is the point being made, though, yes it is a little bit 'well duh')
 

Sonicfan059

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,903
Hopefully they won't buy studios but rather expand on their existing ones and build new ones.
It really sucks when the big ones buy studios and make their games exclusive.
I have no problem with fostering internal studios and having them making exclusives though or contracting out exclusive games to independent studios (like everyone does with Insomniac).

Also this is the moneyquote:
"I don't want to get into me-too, it seems like I think the world's got all the battle royale it needs right now."

I 100% agree with that, it would be such a waste of money for the console makers to get into that now!
Expanding and creating new ones are exactly what they’ve been doing and getting high quality talent with them. Funny how the media hyped up MS acquisitions but you never hear about Sony expanding at a similar pace.
 

pswii60

Member
Oct 27, 2017
8,934
UK
I think this is exaggeration. They are skipping e3 this year not forever......they will be back when it is relevant to their release schedule and when they need to be.
Eh? He right there says that he'd rather E3 is a fan celebration with panels, and not about announcements (press conference) etc.

That's what I referring to with regards to the press conferences. I think they've been more important and had a bigger impact for Sony that perhaps he realises IMHO. Not all of them, not every year, but certainly 2013 and 2015.
 
Oct 31, 2017
4,657
Why you think that?
I don't want any 3rd party to be made single platform.
While I get what you're saying... I don't view it as an issue because it's not as if there's a finite amount of developers for the foreseeable future. There are so many new developers over the past decade, up-and-coming, and Sony's structure has allowed some really terrific games to get developed, as well as previously small developers such as Naughty Dog and Guerrilla Games to become powerhouses.

Plus, it's not the easiest thing to be independent, anyway. Being part of a company provides stability, and I've read that the benefits employees get at Sony are pretty darn good, too.

I'm game for more studios to join the fold as it's provided me with some of the best games I've played this generation due to the incredible pipeline Sony's publishing provides developers who want to create big single-player games.
 

Windrunner

Restless Dreams
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
3,656
As much as that's true, I think it's also true that if you were to compare the size of their publishing slate in the PS3 years on average to the size of their PS4 slate on average, there is a notable shrink in numbers. So it might be a relative historical reference more than an absolute one that's comparing to others today.
I know what you mean but I think that's true of all publishers to varying extents. At least Sony aren't all in on "AAA" and the desire to experiment with new technologies is still there and long may it continue!
 
Feb 10, 2018
11,692
The thought of MS buying them, you seem fine with MS acquiring 3rd parties, but not Sony. Weird.
History has shown us MS has worked to creatively bankrupt studios (forcing them to make 1 i. p etc forever), not sure why your opinion sounds more optimistic when it involves ms.
I just don't "hope" a certain studio gets brought.

Also why you say I'm fine with MS acquiring studios?
Where have you seen me post that?
Or are you spreading lies?
 

SG-17

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Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,111
User Banned (3 days): console wars
Next gen launch is going to be so fucking funny.

Everyone and their mother is expecting Xbox to blow up and take the lead and be this big thing while constantly disregarding PlayStation with fanboy bullshit like "arrogant" and "lost their sense of competition".

What is going to happen instead is that the PS5 will be powerful, affordable, launch with big exclusives, and have PlayStation 4 backwards compatibility and will carry over all of the momentum of this generation and the vast majority of its 90 million userbase. It doesn't matter what Xbox does so long as PlayStation doesn't fuck up.
 

pswii60

Member
Oct 27, 2017
8,934
UK
Announcements do not start and end with E3.....I think were they do it means little, it would have the same impact.
More of the media - especially mainstream media - visits and/or watches E3 than any other event. For example, the likes of the BBC will report on E3 announcements whilst they wouldn't be reporting on things announced at PSX (unless it's the PS5 reveal obviously).
Next gen launch is going to be so fucking funny.

Everyone and their mother is expecting Xbox to blow up and take the lead and be this big thing while constantly disregarding PlayStation with fanboy bullshit like "arrogant" and "lost their sense of competition".

What is going to happen instead is that the PS5 will be powerful, affordable, launch with big exclusives, and have PlayStation 4 backwards compatibility and will carry over all of the momentum of this generation and the vast majority of its 90 million userbase. It doesn't matter what Xbox does so long as PlayStation doesn't fuck up.
This is the most fanboy warrior post I've read this week. If you think "everyone and their mother is expecting Xbox to blow up and take the lead" then you're having delusions, or you spent more time posting on Era than actually reading Era.
 

CosmicSea

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Feb 5, 2019
502
More of the media - especially mainstream media - visits and/or watches E3 than any other event. For example, the likes of the BBC will report on E3 announcements whilst they wouldn't be reporting on things announced at PSX (unless it's the PS5 reveal obviously).
They will be at E3 when they have said announcements in 2020....Missing e3 one year is not going to matter in the grand scheme of things.
 

TheRaidenPT

Member
Jun 11, 2018
3,220
Lisbon, Portugal
Next gen launch is going to be so fucking funny.

Everyone and their mother is expecting Xbox to blow up and take the lead and be this big thing while constantly disregarding PlayStation with fanboy bullshit like "arrogant" and "lost their sense of competition".

What is going to happen instead is that the PS5 will be powerful, affordable, launch with big exclusives, and have PlayStation 4 backwards compatibility and will carry over all of the momentum of this generation and the vast majority of its 90 million userbase. It doesn't matter what Xbox does so long as PlayStation doesn't fuck up.
Sounds about right, Sony has people tied to a ecosystem there isn't any possibility for MS to overcome Sony next gen... 94M people won't simple ditch their games and subscriptions for an Xbox over night
 

tyfon

Member
Nov 2, 2017
3,131
Norway
Expanding and creating new ones are exactly what they’ve been doing and getting high quality talent with them. Funny how the media hyped up MS acquisitions but you never hear about Sony expanding at a similar pace.
Yep and I hope they (Sony) keep doing it that way :)
They've been bringing the goods so far so whatever they've been doing has worked just fine.
 

DMVfan123

The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
5,841
Virginia
This is the most fanboy warrior post I've read this week. If you think "everyone and their mother is expecting Xbox to blow up and take the lead" then you're having delusions, or you spent more time posting on Era than actually reading Era.
IDK, I see a lot of that talk on Kinda Funny

And quite a few articles on here lately talking about how MS is primed to take next-gen, doesn't seem like a post too far flung from reality
 
Nov 11, 2017
944
Am I the only one that didn't get much out of the article ? Lol I agree that they dont need to do battle royal though
 

ianpm31

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,856
Next gen launch is going to be so fucking funny.

Everyone and their mother is expecting Xbox to blow up and take the lead and be this big thing while constantly disregarding PlayStation with fanboy bullshit like "arrogant" and "lost their sense of competition".

What is going to happen instead is that the PS5 will be powerful, affordable, launch with big exclusives, and have PlayStation 4 backwards compatibility and will carry over all of the momentum of this generation and the vast majority of its 90 million userbase. It doesn't matter what Xbox does so long as PlayStation doesn't fuck up.
That's what the U.S media doesn't seem to understand. The xbox brand is very weak worldwide so this whole narrative of "poised" to dominate is extremely laughable. I can see them improving in certain regions like us/uk. They have never won a gen ever for a reason. They are still struggling in many regions but all of sudden it all changes next gen lol ok
 

Masagiwa

Member
Jan 27, 2018
3,155
That was a complete Dodge... If you need any more indication regarding next gen in 2020 then I don't know what to say.

We might have a Meeting a year from now
I know right. Your boring "PR" response we have plans for this year regarding announcements would have been enough. I guess it might be the wrong outlet to receive that news but as it stands right now, we know nothing.
 

Bundy

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,235
Like I said a few times, I hope Sony gets 2 more 1st party studios. The right number to support two platforms with the PS5 and PS VR.