The last few years have signalled a big move for Sony, as more and more of its first and second-party titles have leaped to PC. While lesser efforts along these lines have occurred for years, the new age has seen a significant resurgence in PC port efforts, many of which have been of extremely high quality. Though this move could have originally been a simple way to improve player bases, new moves by Microsoft paint the move to PC as one of increasing necessity, with some strong implications for PC enthusiasts.
What This Means for Players
With Microsoft already porting Xbox games to PC, and Sony upping their game, the takeaway for PC players is mostly a positive one. While there might be a delay before games are ported over, this move means that PC players without access or interest in the PlayStation console still have a way to play its games. Combined with Microsoft’s efforts, it’s only really now that Nintendo is locked to its console system, and more choice in how we engage is always welcome.
For players who already own a PlayStation 5, this could mark a time to move on, or an opportunity to replay games on another platform down the line. It also means an avenue with the potential for different security concerns, especially when looking at passwords. As mentioned in this article by ExpressVPN, users tend to use certain passwords depending on their country. Since the PC is a more open environment than the PS5, good practices such as avoiding passwords like ‘212121’ and ‘password’ will become even more necessary.
Why the Move?
At the launch of the last gaming generation, a focus on console platform exclusives was at a low point. While Nintendo kept going strong, the more powerful systems of Sony and Microsoft wanted to focus on the cutting edge. Developing these titles is expensive, so companies slowly drifted towards more multiplatform support. That said, Sony was ahead of Microsoft in exclusive titles, but Microsoft wasn’t going to let this slide.
In March 2021, Microsoft acquired Zenimax Media for $7.5 billion. In January 2022, Microsoft also acquired Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. This move gave it the rights to many of gaming’s biggest franchises, including Call of Duty, the Elder Scrolls, Doom, Overwatch, Fallout, and Diablo. If the company chooses, it could eventually prevent titles in these series from reaching Sony’s console, and that has to have made Sony worried.
In moving more of its games to PC, Sony can expand its player base to a new frontier. While Microsoft still has the edge on properties and experience, with Windows being the default PC gaming OS, bigger numbers give Sony a way to compete.
The release of Sony games on PC is likely to change as Microsoft slowly tightens its grip. As noted by CNBC, Microsoft has offered deals on Call of Duty for PlayStation, but even if this is a legitimate offer, it’s not a permanent one. If Sony wants to compete, it might have to speed up its release schedule for its PC ports, releasing them simultaneously rather than months or years later. That said, this raises the issue of sales losses due to piracy, further complicating the matter. The one thing we know for sure is that Sony is in for a rocky few years with how the PS5 handles gaming.