PlayStation looks at new investment for PC, mobile push | Biden News


TOKYO, Oct 4 (Reuters) – Sony Group Corp’s ( 6758.T ) gaming business is eyeing fresh investment to bolster its push into PC and mobile, a senior executive said, as the PlayStation 5 maker competes for talent with deep-pocketed rivals. and as industrial negotiations heat up.

“Further investments in areas that will strengthen the expansion to PC, to mobile and to live services, that is certainly a possibility for us,” Hermen Hulst, head of PlayStation Studios, told Reuters in an interview without giving further details.

Sony, whose studios are known for single-player console games such as “Spider-Man” and “God of War”, has outlined ambitious plans to publish titles on PC and mobile and offer live service games that provide continuous updated gameplay.

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The radical change is reflected in its recent deals including the $3.6 billion acquisition of Bungie, the studio behind the multiplayer “Destiny” franchise, which Sony operates outside of its PlayStation Studios network.

Other investments include the purchase of a minority stake in Japanese developer FromSoftware, whose action role-playing game “Elden Ring” has sold more than 16.6 million units.

“You should think about collaborations on game development first and foremost, but it’s also not unthinkable with our PlayStation Productions efforts that we’re exploring opportunities,” Hulst said of FromSoftware’s investment.

Sony is producing a growing number of game adaptations, with this year’s “Uncharted” movie grossing more than $400 million worldwide and a TV series based on “The Last of Us” franchise from its Naughty Dog studio launching on HBO next year.

Hulst, who is based in the Netherlands and took over in 2019, has overseen the growth of PlayStation Studios to 19 studios, with additions including Nixxes, which brings console games to PC, and mobile developer Savage Game Studios.

A key differentiator

Considering the extent of the transformation aimed at the gaming business, analysts expect another deal from Sony.

“I think they will still add studios,” said Serkan Toto, founder of the Kantan Games consultancy.

The strength of PlayStation’s studio network has drawn praise as a key differentiator with Xbox maker Microsoft ( MSFT.O ), which is trying to buy Activision Blizzard ( ATVI.O ).

Sony’s head of gaming, Jim Ryan, protested the potential impact of the $69 billion mega-deal on PlayStation users.

“If Sony can pull off what they’ve done with single-player experiences but (as) multiplayer experiences across platforms, on the PC, on consoles and maybe even on the phone, then all bets are off,” Toto said, pointing to the success of online games such as Epic Games’ Fortnite.

Sony’s push into other platforms comes as it has struggled to produce enough PlayStation 5 units due to supply chain issues. Its in-house studios are also developing titles for the next-generation PlayStation VR2 headset, due to launch early next year.

Such headsets, which have attracted investment from gamers including Facebook parent Meta ( META.O ), have yet to break through and become a mainstream method of playing games. Pricing for the device has not been announced.

While “Horizon Forbidden West,” which launched in February, is “open world and that’s not necessarily suitable for a PSVR2 game,” Sony is designing “measured” titles like “Horizon Call of the Mountain” for the system, Hulst said. said

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Reporting by Sam Nussey; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters’ Trust Principles.


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