PlayStation recently acquired Dutch company Nixxes Software, which specializes in porting games to PC.
Nixxes Software is well-known for multiple PC ports including Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Marvel Avengers, and all three reboot Tomb Raider games. The move can certainly contribute towards PlayStation’s promised support to bring older games to PC.
Bringing games to the PC platform has opened them up to many more players than previously, but keeping that aspect aside, the question remains if bringing PlayStation exclusives to PC is sustainable both in terms of business profit and brand identity expenditure.
Is bringing PlayStation exclusives to PC a sustainable model for business profit and brand identity?
Since 1996, PlayStation has built a slew of exclusive IPs from multiple talented studios like Naughty Dog, Santa Monica Studios, Guerrilla Games, Insomniac, and many others.
The exclusive AAA games from the studios are often dubbed “system sellers” for their surreal gameplay experience that convinces gamers to invest in a new PlayStation console.
Recently PlayStation has started to bring their relatively new PlayStation exclusive to PC, most notably Horizon Zero Dawn and Days Gone. While most gamers were happy to introduce new fans to the beloved series or to play the game for the first time, some long-term dedicated fans raised the question of this move.
Will this move not only dilute the brand’s identity but also be an unsustainable business model?
Even though at launch the games are considered to be a system seller, that does not last long enough. After a few years, the games fall short of attracting players to pick up a new console, let alone a next-generation one.
Moreover, one major issue is emulating. Softwares such as PCSX2 and RPCS3 are easily able to emulate PlayStation consoles and play exclusive games on PC.
As such, bringing previously exclusive games on PC not only excites new fans to know more about the game but also taps into a massive player base of PC players. This move not only retains PlayStation’s brand identity as one of the biggest video game companies but expands it to a new demographic of PC players.
Now approaching the business aspect. while exclusive games do sell consoles, 4 years old games do not retain enough popularity to entice new players to buy a new console for just one game.
Bringing Horizon Zero Dawn not only introduced new fans to the franchise but also got PC players excited for the upcoming PlayStation exclusive sequel, Horizon II Forbidden West. Some of the new fans might even buy a PlayStation console for the first time to play the sequel.
With PlayStation’s acquisition of Nixxes Software, fans are excited to see more PC ports of older PlayStation exclusive games.