PlayStation Boss Says E3 Didn't Keep Up With Industry Change

"A trade show without a lot of trade activity."

204 Comments
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Now Playing: Why PlayStation Is Skipping E3 2019 - GS News Update

Sony's decision to forgo E3 2019 caused waves, and the statement regarding its rationale revolved mostly around finding "inventive opportunities to engage the community" and plans to "think differently and experiment." SIE Worldwide Studios head Shawn Layden has now explained further--touching not only on what they plan to do differently in the future, but why E3 was no longer as useful.

Layden told CNet that the nature of E3 had been built up around standards that no longer apply, both for retailers and journalists. At its inception, the show had been a place for retailers to plan their stock, and for journalists to plan cover stories for magazines. In the modern era, he says, both of those have shifted.

"Now we have an event in February called Destination PlayStation, where we bring all retailers and third-party partners to come hear the story for the year," he said. "They're making purchasing discussions in February. June, now, is just too late to have a Christmas holiday discussion with retailers. So retail has really dropped off. And journalists now, with the internet and the fact that 24/7 there is game news, it's lost its impact around that.

"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," he added.

Against all of those market forces, Sony was making a plan to do fewer and bigger games, which meant that June was no longer a good time in the year to outline its latest plans. "We feel like if we ring the bell and people show up here in force, people have [the] expectation 'Oh, they're going to tell us something.'"

The idea of setting expectations echoes Layden's rationale for skipping PSX in 2018, which was announced before Sony pulled out of E3 as well. We don't know yet when Sony will be outlining its own upcoming plans, or in what form. It follows big publishers like Activision and EA who have scaled back their E3 plans in recent years. Sony's show in 2018 was also very different, focusing narrowly on just four games.

For its part, Microsoft seems eager to fill the void left by its biggest console competitor. Xbox head Phil Spencer has said the company is going to "go and be as big at E3 as we've ever been."

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Avatar image for Sevenizz
Sevenizz

I’m not a playstation customer so for them to forgo an all encompassing event means I miss anything they’re trying to sell. Why would I bother with their playstation event when I don’t own their console? At least at E3 I’d be informed of what they’ve got to offer.

Dumb marketing move sony. I know you’re number one, but skipping the biggest gaming event in the industry hurts your visibility to non customers.

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aross2004

@Sevenizz: Oh please 7tizz. You have no inclination whatsoever to get a Sony machine. So totally fake.

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MisterTech

@aross2004: agreed. I remember finding this guy on YouTube.. was so salty and really reaching... saying I was prolly fat and such.. so I changed my pick on YouTube to show my man crush and he just stopped responding... literally writes more on this site than the writers themselves.. sad existence. He lives to be a keyboard warrior.. so much so he needs an alt account

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Sevenizz

@mistertech: Why not argue my content in the related thread instead of a poor attempt at a personal attack? You know, like the terms of service dictate on this site.

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MisterTech

@Sevenizz: cry harder. Waste of life lol

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Sevenizz

@mistertech: But you’re the one crying and can’t keep to the topic of the thread.

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MisterTech

@Sevenizz: by responding to me you are doing the same thing :) keep going... keep trying.. I await your crafty response

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Sevenizz

@aross2004: Umm, clearly you don’t know me. I own a ps2,3 and a psp. What makes you think I’m not in the market for another playstation?

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Moviespot

@Sevenizz: we've all seen your garbage and your online presence is mutually disliked.

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Sevenizz

@moviespot: You mean *universally as mutual would mean I dislike myself too?

I know I know, English is hard...

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Moviespot

@Sevenizz: yeah, I was implying that because it's quite obvious you hate your life and vent online. Gg wp.

Avatar image for Sevenizz
Sevenizz

@moviespot: Poor attempt at a grammar salvage.

What are you even angry about? What did I write that could possibly incite this crap being flung at me?

Can you argue the topic or does my existence simply trigger you?

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Moviespot

@Sevenizz: I'm done, ya done? Boring.

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Sevenizz

@moviespot: Thank you for answering my last question exactly how I suspected.

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sleepnsurf

@Sevenizz: Moviebot or whoever she is got shook!

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Moviespot

@Sevenizz: what and you didnt? Mind numbing. Go on though get the last word. Do it.

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Xiomata

They have a point, bringing new games under the attention can be done alot cheaper than on E3. Especially if you don't have much new exclusive titles available (not that MS ever cared, but their shows havn't been the best the last few years). Also doubt we'll be seeing any new hardware from anyone, so why spend way more for advertisement when it can be done cheaper.

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JamesBR27

They may be working on the PS5 now like many already said, but we can be sure they will work next on the PS5 Slim and PS5 Pro, so wait for those versions if you can

Avatar image for alucard1001
Alucard1001

Also because MS had a plan for the future. While everyone bashed MS for having their media on all platforms as a gamble, it paied off! Sony has no future plans...

Avatar image for starjay009
starjay009

@alucard1001: Re: "Sony has no future plans..." I am not so sure I agree with that comment. I think they are simply being smart as a business and corporation. During early 2020 we will know all their intention for good or bad.

Avatar image for xbhonner
xbhonner

@alucard1001: "haeyving their meydia on all playtformes"

sony also have "meydia on all playtformes", its called ps now

Avatar image for Rainier2
Rainier2

@xbhonner: PS Now is far from having their media on all platforms. It's mostly a streaming service for old PS3 games. Xbox's strategy is multi-pronged. Play Anywhere, buy game once, play it (natively) on PC or xbox. Full cross play support. Gamepass, subscription for playing games (again natively), including new first party titles (Halo Infinite, Ori 2, Forza Horizon 4 etc). Real backwards compatibility; games across 3 generations of consoles, disc or otherwise, works on the same box. Lastly, "xcloud" or whatever; a streaming service for all games to play on any device, including mobile.

I don't think Sony is even remotely positioned to compete with that.

Avatar image for xbhonner
xbhonner

@Rainier2: Dude, ps now is available on pc, and smart tv. And probably smartphone in near future. Multi prong my ass. They basically just copying whatever Sony did, following whatever move sony made.

Play anywhere copied PS4 - Vita cross buy, also with cross save. Gameshitpass copied PS Now (after Sony changed the business model to subscription system), xcloud is also copying ps now, which is basically a cloud gaming service on which Sony did first years and years ago. And ps4 users can stream their ps4 to friken smartphones yeeeeaaaaars ago. You guys really lagging behind ps4 to the point where you brag to us about features that we have for quite some time, where they are actually copied by micro$oft from playstation.

Also Fucking emulation is not a fucking real BC. If you want to know what a real bc is, take a look at early ps3 models who have HARDWARE BC to ps2, instead of stupid emulation

Avatar image for Rainier2
Rainier2

@xbhonner:

"Multi prong my ass"

Keep that for the bedroom.

"And ps4 users can stream their ps4 to friken smartphones yeeeeaaaaars ago"

Xcloud doesn't require you to have a PS4 (or Xbox) running, or even own one. It's not even comparable.

"If you want to know what a real bc is, take a look at early ps3 models"

Cool. How is that working out on your PS4?

Avatar image for xbhonner
xbhonner

@Rainier2: the thing is MICRO$OFT COPIED EVERYTHING SONY DID AND HAVE NO ABILITY TO THINK OF SOMETHING ON THEIR OWN. And their fanboys brag about their "new" shit that the ps4 owners already have long time ago.

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SPARTAN_D7

Years of “winning” E3 by showing games not coming out for 3 years has caught up with them. Now they have nothing to show. So they are sitting in the corner pouting blaming E3 for being out dated. OK there Sony.

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Spaced92

@SPARTAN_D7: By your logic there's nothing to stop them from showing something coming out in a few years time. But due to the PS5 it's likely that next years conference is going to be pretty meaty.

Avatar image for xbhonner
xbhonner

@SPARTAN_D7:

"Years of “winning” E3 by showing games not coming out for 3 years has caught up with them."

Yeah, like Scalebound, Crapdown 3, etc. Oh shit...

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Sevenizz

@SPARTAN_D7: When did they win E3? Because I recall the past few conferences judged rather poorly.

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xbhonner

@Sevenizz: when did they win E3? uhhh everything from 2013 to 2016?

when did microsoft win e3? never?

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Marky360

@SPARTAN_D7:

LOL so true.

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Galactica666

How about sony change their style of presentations? E3 was old, but sony sucked at it, showing lame presentations with dumb intermissions, spamming of vids with no proper transitions and having boring speakers. If they want to do things another way, it would not help if those guys (including shawn layden) are boring as **** with a charisma of a toad. No matter how they want to change things, if they are boring with the same boring people involved, nothing will change. They have also ran outof games to show, and blatantly admitted it, and now their narrative changed. I felt that sony's presentations have been hoorrible year after year. Their hosts and talkers suck as well, including shawn layden. Pu-lease...Get good, sony!

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Creepshow2

I really love the PS4 and think its a real bummer they are not going to be there. That being said I look forward to seeing all the announcements Xbox will have. Its great owning them both and playing the games they both offer. I need to add a Switch to my collection, but waiting on the redesign to see if its better:P

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Marky360

@creepshow2:

Yea I agree with you my dude 100% the Switch is great too can't wait to see what else Ninty got up their sleeves.

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uberDave

Just once i would like to see sony justify a decision with something else than claiming that the thing they are not doing is now out of date. Because they said that about back compat this gen and you watch them crow about having limited back compat on ps5.

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Marky360

@uberDave:

LOL I know right Sony act like if they ain't doing it then it ain't cool but then as soon as they do it all of a sudden its cool again lol 😂.

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Barighm

@uberDave: Er...they didn't say BC was out of date. They said it was too hard and there wasn't really that much demand for it. They also said right from the beginning BC should be much easier for the PS5 since the PS4 is using common PC parts.

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Marky360

@Barighm:

Yea but you see the lie is that there wasn't much demand for it. Everyone wanted BC UNTIL Sony said that they couldn't do it then ppl started acting like BC wasn't important. Then Microsoft pulled out a minor miracle and pulled out BC for the Xbox 360 and Original Xbox.

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darkelf83

@Marky360: Let's at least be honest about MS's BC. They have to hand make each game work. Which is why so few games from the original Xbox are available. Even the 360 library is small compared to what is out there. It still isn't true BC like we had before. Sure it's better than nothing but still leaves lots of disappointment for those who don't get the games they want.

Sony did it with the PS3 and it was expensive and people didn't want to pay for it. They took out the PS2 BC hardware, lowered the price and people bought it. What does that say about BC?

I like it but why would Sony pay for something that didn't sell? Businesses run on economics and people spoke with their wallets.

Avatar image for firedrakez
FireDrakeZ

@darkelf83: BC on the Xbox One gives you access to nearly 600 more games(540 Xbox 360 titles and 33 OG Xbox titles and rising every week) than the PS4. If you have an Xbox 360 with its catalog of BC OG XBox games, that adds another 470+ games more giving you over 1000 BC games accessible to Xbox console owners compared to PS console owners. Not even close.

Plus you get a lot of this BC games enhanced with higher resolution(up to 4K) and framerates. They add a few titles to the BC list every week so I and many others look forward to seeing if our favorite games from the prev generations can now be played on the Xbox One at higher resolution and framerates.

As for demand, MS is selling a lot of these BC games from the Xbox store, not only due to nostalgia but because a lot of gamers missed playing a lot of these AAA games in the past and now have the opportunity to buy and play them this current gen.

Avatar image for darkelf83
darkelf83

@firedrakez: 540 of the ~2103 Xbox 360 games, so only about 1/4 and 33 of ~1047 original games, 3%. Not much really. At least when Sony did BC they didn't half a** it.

So what your saying is that if I own an Xbox One and a 360, I get 1000ish games for BC.

The PS3 can play 98%+ of all PS1/PS2 games with a fat boy. Any PS3 will play PS1 games. So ~ 2700 and 2566 respectively.

So with a PS3 I could get access to ~5266 games or 5 times as many and at a minimum ~2700.

Avatar image for firedrakez
FireDrakeZ

@darkelf83: Only the early launch PS3 can do that and only a few were made before that model was discontinued. It used additional hardware for back compatibility which added to the costs which made the model uneconomical and hard to sell and was therefore discontinued. That makes your argument basically moot and null, since that console model did not pan out. Most PS3 consoles do not have the back compatibility feature as a result.

MS used emulation technology instead which proved to be economically feasible allowing all their consoles moving forward to add back compatibility as one of their features. It takes a lot of hard work and a dedicated team to accomplish but MS has promised to continue to add games to the list including 2 more this week giving a total of 542 Xbox 360 games. Xbox owners can certainly look forward to MS adding more and more games to the BC list.

The only limiting factor is the developers/publishers themselves not allowing MS to do this because of expired licensing agreements or because they plan to release remakes which will compete with the back compatible versions.

It is this same emulation technology that Sony now plans to add to their next gen console because it works. However I am not sure they can do this so easily with PS3 games because of the radically different Cell architecture of the PS3 consoles. As Sony themselves said, they wanted to do BC via emulation this current gen. It is just too difficult.

Avatar image for darkelf83
darkelf83

@firedrakez: That was for PS2 games and I covered that point. All PS3's can play PS1 games. So, no it isn't moot. Maybe do some research before replying. Yes MS's route is more economically feasible, which is why Sony dropped what they did for PS4. Which I also mentioned.

https://support.playstation.com/s/article/Play-PSone-and-PlayStation-2-Games-on-a-PlayStation-3?language=en_US

Avatar image for firedrakez
FireDrakeZ

@darkelf83: Which Koei Tecmo Titles do you want back compatible asks developer

KOEI TECMO EUROPE

‏Verified account @koeitecmoeurope

Awesome #DOA Xbox collection from @mfunnyman

RT if you'd like to see more of our titles backward compatible! Reply to let Japan HQ know which ones! #Xbox #backwardscompatibility

https://twitter.com/koeitecmoeurope/status/1095608416213614592

All the Dead or Alive series were posted.

For me Ninja Gaiden 2 and 3, all the DOA titles and Bladestorm please.

Of course all the work is done by the BC team at MS. In general all the publishers do is give the ok except for a few exceptions, e.g. Square Enix added updated FMV cutscenes of Final Fantasy XIII from the original 360 games to the Xbox One BC version while MS updated the rest of the game to 4K resolution enhanced with higher framerates for the Xbox One X.

BTW Unlike OG Xbox games, PS1 and PS2 titles are easy to emulate on PC, so I could access those if I wanted to. I just never felt the need to because of my backlog.

Avatar image for darkelf83
darkelf83

@firedrakez: What does this have to do with the discussion? Except admitting that piracy is OK. I already acknowledged that MS did the work by hand.

Avatar image for Marky360
Marky360

@darkelf83:

If we are really being honest it wasn't BC that made the PS3 expensive it was the use of a Blu-ray drive and the Cell processor these 2 things are really what drove up the price of the PS3 bit they obviously couldn't get rid of them because they were 100% necessary to be in the console so BC became the unfortunate casualty and got taken out to try and make the console a little cheaper so it would sell. Ppl definitely wanted backwards compatibility I know I sure did and when they took it out I was highly disappointed. By the time I had the money to buy a PS3 you couldn't find a backwards compatible PS3 unless it was used and those were prone to the YLOD. So it's not that I wasn't willing to pay for backwards compatability Sony didn't let me because they discontinued it before I could buy one.

Avatar image for oCAFFEINEo
oCAFFEINEo

We all know they're working on the PS5.

Avatar image for Barighm
Barighm

@oCAFFEINEo: Well, yeah, they've said as much.

Avatar image for WhoIsTheDrizzle
WhoIsTheDrizzle

Sounds like they are doing their own version of Nintendo Directs. Fine by me as long as they have big announcements during e3 week

Avatar image for obiroid1
Obiroid1

sony just getting arrogant? Micosoft was that way last generation and im a big xbox guy but sony kicked their ass this generation. Microsoft pissed off a lot of people and suffered for it last time around.

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k0wing

@obiroid1: dont remember MS sitting out an E3. maybe they had some dull ones but they were there. Sony seems not to realize E3 isnt exactly about them but for the 90 million who purchased their system. e3 is for the games industry!!

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lostn

@obiroid1: They're likely going to do a Direct like Nintendo, but when they have things ready.

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Barighm

@lostn: Which is pretty much what everyone is doing now.

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Berserk8989

Finally they've come to their senses. Nowadays, E3 is just a waste of time and resources. Giants of the industry, like Rockstar or Nintendo, skip it and are doing better than the majority of game companies. Why should Sony bow to that circlejerk that is E3? They're finally showing some class with this move. Unlike Microsoft, who went like "we're going bigger than ever next E3", after Sony announced they won't show up. Seems like such a desperate and pathetic move.

They should consider going "bigger and better" with actual games for a change, instead of worthless events. After 7 years or so of mediocrity, one would think it's about time.