On May 29, 2020, we got a glimpse of the future. Sony hosted a stream called “The Future of Gaming,” which served as the red carpet debut of the PlayStation 5. That stream included grand reveals for what would end up being the first two years of the console’s software lineup, including Demon’s Souls, Horizon Forbidden West, and Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart. Sony would follow that stream up with another in September, two months before the PS5’s launch, with a showcase unveiling Spider-Man: Miles Morales and God of War Ragnarok.
By the end of 2022, Sony will have played all of its cards from that PS5 hype cycle. While a few major third-party games shown in 2020 have yet to release, the future of the PS5 will be a little less clear after God of War launches on November 9.
Only two years into the PS5’s lifecycle, it’s more than likely that Sony has a full tank of gas. We’ll likely learn more if Sony decides to host a first-party-focused State of Play this fall. But i you’re wondering what life after Ragnarok is going to be, we do have some idea of what the next phase of the PS5’s life will look like.
The Marvel push
Sony doesn’t have a lot of publicly confirmed exclusives in the works, but there are two major ones we know about — and they’re both Marvel games. Developer Insomniac is currently working on a full sequel to Marvel’s Spider-Man, which is planned for a 2023 release. If that’s the case, it’ll likely be Sony’s big holiday play next year.
Insomniac has another superhero game in the works, though. The studio is currently working on a Wolverine game that we know next to nothing about. All we’ve seen so far is a quick teaser showing off Logan’s claws. There have been no gameplay details beyond that, so it would be surprising if we see it next year. Still, it appears to be one of the next major PS5 exclusives on Sony’s mind, so it may wind up being 2024’s hot game.
First-party mystery projects
While we don’t really know many games beyond that, we do know that Sony’s studios are hard at work on projects. Naughty Dog has a Last of Us multiplayer game in the oven, though it seems to be in its early stages. Days Gone developer Bend Studio is working on a multiplayer-focused game in a new IP. Bluepoint Games is rumored to be working on both a high-profile remake and a large original game.
Sony has made several acquisitions over the past few years, so we’ll likely see the fruits of those efforts pay off in the next few years. All we know for sure is that those plans likely won’t include every fan favorite Sony series. Ghost of Tsushima studio Sucker Punch recently confirmed that it’s working on larger projects these days, noting that it had no plans for Sly Cooper or Infamous at this time.
Live service push
In the flurry of gaming news this year, it’s been easy to forget that Sony announced its purchase of Destiny developer Bungie. Alongside that news, Sony told investors that it’s all-in on live service games. The company noted that it plans to spend 55% of its development budget on service games by 2025.
It might be too early to see any of that come to fruition, but you can expect to see the first phase of those plans play out in the next few years. Bungie seems to be especially busy as it staffs up for new projects, including a competitive multiplayer game, which will likely be a PlayStation exclusive following the deal.
The Final Fantasy console
Microsoft may have snatched up Bethesda, but Sony has a key partner in Square Enix. The company continues to hand Sony console exclusives, which has led some to speculate that it could be Sony’s next big purchase down the line. That wouldn’t be too surprising, because Final Fantasy has become the biggest piece of the PS5’s future game plan.
We’ve known for a while that Final Fantasy XVI would be a major exclusive for Sony, and it’s scheduled to land on PS5 next year. But now we also know that the system will get Final Fantasy VII Rebirth as an exclusive by winter 2024. While other Final Fantasy titles still routinely come to other consoles, Sony has the biggest entries locked down. The next two years of the PS5’s life will be more defined by the RPG franchise than any Sony-owned IP.
All of that’s before factoring in unannounced surprises, indie exclusives, and updates to the newly relaunched PS Plus. Sony has a lot of momentum on its side as year three of this current console generation creeps up. We may not know how it plans to push that advantage, but we know it isn’t easing off the gas pedal anytime soon.
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