Following the announcement of testing cloud streaming capabilities for PlayStation 5 games. In an interview with Gamesindustry.biz, Nick Maguire, the Head of subscriptions at PlayStation, expressed his excitement about the upcoming cloud streaming feature. He mentioned that the service is currently in the testing phase, and further updates will be provided once it is ready for release.
Last year, in June, PlayStation relaunched PS Plus with three different subscription tiers, merging its two previous offerings, PS Plus and PlayStation Now. Nick Maguire emphasized the success of the service, citing impressive statistics such as “a billion hours of gameplay since that catalog launched.”
He also revealed that users are now spending seven times as much time on PS Plus compared to the year before its launch when PlayStation Now was the primary service. Maguire attributed the success of PS Plus to the quality and diversity of the game portfolio, stating that the service appeals to a wide range of players.
He highlighted standout titles like Dead By Daylight, The Legend of Dragoon, Rainbow Six: Siege, and the indie game Stray, which garnered a significant number of players during its first year on the platform. Ghost of Tsushima emerged as the game with the highest number of gameplay hours, emphasizing the engagement and excitement surrounding PS Studios’ exclusive titles.
Sony Sticking to its “No First-Party Games Day One on PlayStation Plus” Strategy
Despite the success of first-party games on PS Plus, Sony remains committed to its strategy of adding older titles to the platform, rather than launching them day one on the service. Maguire explained that this approach allows them to reach a broader customer base even after 12, 18, or 24 months since the games’ initial release.
Putting games in a bit later in the life cycle has meant that we can reach more customers 12, 18, 24 months after they have released. We’re seeing customers still get excited about those games and jumping in. For us, that’s working.”
However, he acknowledged that exceptions may occur, as seen with the recent addition of Stray, which launched on the service on its release day. However, he reaffirmed that their strategy of releasing first-party games outside the service first would continue moving forward.
Maguire also touched on surprises that emerged during the service’s first year. He expressed surprise at the higher popularity of the Premium subscription tier over the Extra tier, contrary to initial expectations.
He also noted the similarity in game preferences among users across different countries, with the top 10 and top 20 game selections being largely consistent. While regional differences exist, the overall mix remains similar.
Regarding the temporary decline in subscriber numbers after the launch of the new PS Plus, Maguire attributed it to the industry-wide dip resulting from the pandemic. However, he reassured that the service has returned to growth, reinforcing the company’s confidence in its current strategy.
What are your thoughts about this news? What features make PlayStation Plus unique from other gaming subscriptions like Xbox Game Pass and Nintendo Switch Online? Let’s discuss this in the comments section below.