Michael Pachter thinks PS5 will be out in 2020. And my opinion is: he’s right. While, in the first place, you might believe Sony could rush a new console out simply to respond to Microsoft’s fire with Xbox One X, the reality is clearly displayed by E3 2017. Do you remember the PlayStation Media Briefing, where we were not provided with any clear release date and many titles were “pushed forward” to 2018? Well, that’s a huge signal about the fact that the Japanese platform holder wants to slow down things from a hardware perspective and stick with the huge PlayStation 4 userbase until sales don’t concretely slow down. Things have gone and are going so much good for PS4, it wouldn’t make any sense to just release a new platform in a matter of one year. And for which reason? Just to stay close to Xbox One X, a console who’s basically making gamers the same offer in terms of content and overall performance than PS4 Pro?
Nah. It’d be like you’re in the first position in a Formula 1 race and then all of a sudden you simply slow down only to see what your direct competitor does, so you can reply to his move. That’d be very stupid in my opinion. Don’t you think?
Well, the same thing is happening now, and if you think 2019 could also be a concrete and viable option for PlayStation 5 to be released… Maybe you’re just forgetting about Death Stranding, The Last of Us: Part II, Sucker Punch’s next game, and perhaps some other titles that don’t currently come to my mind. And that’s given for granted that all the products we saw displayed at E3 2017 are dropping in 2018 and nothing gets delayed for them to have a better and less competitive launch window.
Think of Days Gone – ok, it’s been around for couple years now, but we haven’t seen any date attached to it yet, so would it be so surprising to have it released in early 2019? Sony, I think, only has to drop God of War and Spider-Man in the first half of next year: for all the other games it has hands totally free, so they can really make what they want of that huge portfolio.
So, honestly, why should they rush things to have a new console out in two years? That wouldn’t make any sense, even if you think at a possible second mid-gen platform (definitely no) or a cross-gen development for a part of the games which have already been announced. In the latter case, why would you do that, when Kojima has already showed Death Stranding running in-engine stuff on a PS4 Pro – and what we’ve seen is such a small portion of what the game might be but already very impressive – and Naughty Dog is an internal team that’s built The Last of Us Remastered out of a PS3 title making it one of the most beautiful visual experiences to date even now?
I see there’s still a lot of room for PS4 Pro to push the boundaries, with a 4K which may never be native but so close that you don’t even notice the difference most of the times. They can have it around for at least until the middle of 2019 and then let it be the standard PS4 model when a PlayStation 5 gets finally revealed.
Don’t you think PlayStation 5 release in 2020 is going to be too late for Sony? Microsoft is ready with Xbox One X – it will release in November 2017, and if PlayStation 5 arrives in 2020 – it means Xbox One X is going to have a run of almost 3 years without any real competition which in turns means – during this entire period – all third-party games will run better on Xbox One X (i.e. best version). […] it is going to be a suicidal move.
When I talked to Sehran to see what we should be doing next on Gamepur, he told me this (statement above), and it was completely at the opposite of my idea. It deserves respect of course, especially because it is based on the hope that Microsoft could actually turn things into its favor with Xbox One X. Honestly, I don’t think it is possible, simply for the same reason PS4 is the most sold console this generation – that almost unknown, magic component that makes the brand the real deal for consumers when it comes to video games. PS4 has built its success in the window where he didn’t have lots of console exclusives (actually, it did have very few of them) and on its very competitive pricing at launch.
Xbox One X comes with a higher price tag than PS4 Pro, which will eventually get cheaper before it can do, becoming the entry level to the world of 4K gaming even more than it is now. On its side, Microsoft’s console has a more powerful platform and at least the claim it can deliver the best versions of games (how this will work for third-party titles like Assassin’s Creed Origins, yet another checkerboarded visual experience), which is slightly more than the Kinect and multimedia stuff they thought would be enough to move consumers at Xbox One’s launch.
But still, it has a difference which is very hard to concretely define on a 4K TV, and even harder in a world where users equipped with 4K monitors are very sparse, at a much higher price than PS4 Pro. Don’t get me wrong, looking at what it does on paper Xbox One X’s price tag is almost a miracle, but honestly it’s not eye-catching enough to move people on its side rather than PS4 Pro’s, with its less expensive hardware (and the gap is getting bigger this holiday, be sure of that) and the same perceived performance.
So yes, as you’ve already read in my other features I’m still pretty negative about Xbox One X’s chances to turn things into Microsoft’s favor this year and for the next few years that separate us from the “next-gen”. And this is also the reason why Sony won’t need to launch a new PlayStation until 2020, with an announcement in the middle of 2019 at E3.
Should the status quo really change – and it’s not to say I don’t hope so (I’ve already pre-ordered my Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition – we’ll be right here to comment yet another crazy thing happening in the video games industry.