Marvel’s Spiderman game seems to have captured the attention of almost every gamer as of late. Released as an exclusive on Sony’s PS4 console, the game features a sprawling open world brought to life by an appreciable level of visual fidelity. However, unlike every other media outlet out there, I’m not here to sing praises of Insomniac’s latest game.
Platform exclusives have been a subject of debate ever since they were introduced, but since it’s not illegal, nothing can really be done about it. However, its something many gamers and developers alike don’t really take too kindly. The reasons ought to be obvious, the developers loose out on the sales they’d otherwise generate by making the game available universally.
The gamers on the other hand are forced to skip the title entirely or loan (in some cases even buy) the console to try out an acclaimed exclusive. No gamer should have to reluctantly buy a console just for the sake of one or two exclusives. In fact, most gamers don’t have the luxury to own multiple consoles, so they miss out on many phenomenal titles that also happen to be exclusives.
Lets face it, we all prefer a specific platform for one reason or another. It may be just because of some form of attachment to it or the features it offers. For example, I myself have been a longtime PC gamer not just because of the high visual quality and smooth frame rates PC gaming offers, but because I love building them too and I’ve been an avid hardware enthusiast ever since I can recall. As such I see no reason to buy a PS4 just to experience an exclusive or two.
Personally I’m not a Marvel fan, so the fact that Spiderman is limited to the PS4 didn’t really bother me, but God of War is one game I’d really love to try out at 4K 60 FPS on my PC. Unfortunately that’s not happening because Sony has a lot of money and it owns the franchise as well as the studios behind it.
Generally it’s the AAA publishers like EA and Ubisoft who sell their games across all major platforms, just because they can. In case of developers owned by Sony, the publishers have no option but to restrict their titles to the PS4. The same goes for Microsoft’s studios, although now we also get PC ports of Xbox exclusives.
Consider Square Enix’s games like Nier Automata. The game released on the PS4 and PC, but recently was ported to the Xbox one and One X because the publisher is not bound to any particular platform and considering the sales it generated they had every reason to. These days third-party exclusives are turning into timed exclusives and even then we usually get some enhanced edition with all the DLCs included. Final Fantasy XV is one such example.
However, considering the recent success of Sony’s first party exclusives, it seems like they are here to stay and unfortunately there’s not much one can do about. What are your thoughts on first party exclusives?