PS America Boss: At Worldwide Studios We’re Devoted To Storytelling, I Won’t Force My Teams To Do GaaS Titles

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Dec 9, 2017
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Shawn Layden, President and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment America (SIEA) as well as Chairman of Sony Interactive Worldwide Studios, appeared on stage during the PlayStation Experience 2017 event in Anaheim, California.

Layden, who replaced Jack Tretton as President and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment America (then still called Sony Computer Entertainment America, or SCEA), was interviewed by Kinda Funny’s Greg Miller, who inquired about his vision for PlayStation in 2018.

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You can read his reply below, or watch it on YouTube at this address.

Well, I think we continue along our path… putting my Worldwide Studios hat on, I think in Worldwide Studios, we have a lot of energy, a lot of devotion, a lot of love around storytelling, around narrative. You know, some people call it single player gaming, we do have most of our eggs in that basket: Because, that’s the thing we do well… and I don’t want to go to those teams and tell them “I read in a magazine that there’s something called games as a service, make me one of those!”. I don’t want to be that guy. So, that’s what we do. We do Horizon, we do God Of War, we do Detroit, Uncharted, The Last Of Us. These are things we’re gonna continue to lean into very strong. So I see our content story continuing to play out that way.

This seems like a clear, explicit poke at the industry’s obsession with Game as a Service (GaaS) and online games in general. Publishers like Ubisoft, Square Enix and many others have openly said that this is the future of gaming, to keep consumers engaged for a longer time period, and that clearly is much easier to accomplish with an online game compared to a single player title.

That said, it’s great to see companies like Sony and Nintendo still focusing first and foremost on making triple-A single player games like Uncharted, God of War, The Last of Us, Horizon, The Last Guardian, Shadow of the Colossus, Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Metroid Prime 4 and many others.

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