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Business God of War generated half billion in revenue for Sony, Horizon Zero Dawn hit 400M

KyoShiRo330

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Sony had an incredible sales success with their first-party IPs this generation with games like Ghost of Tsushima, God of War, Uncharted, and more.



When it comes to their first-party games, Sony had a couple of misfires early in the generation like The Order 1886 or Killzone Shadowfall, but they quickly stabilized from them and ended up creating some memorable experiences.
God of War is a franchise that was brought back for the PS4 but with a complete overhaul of the core game. It was a risky decision but Sony took this bet and ended up having massive success with it.
The game sold more than 3 million copies with 3 days of its launch becoming the fastest-selling game for Sony Worldwide Studios.
This record was broken a few months later by Marvel’s Spider-Man.




As for how much revenue Sony managed to earn from God of War, a quick glimpse at the Linkedin profile of TJ Consunji, Group Marketing Manager at PlayStation, reveals that the game grossed more than $500 million in revenue as of 2019.
The game sold more than 10 million copies in its launch year and digital sales made up 40% of this figure.
The same person has listed the revenue and sales for Horizon Zero Dawn as well:
As a new IP, it was also massively successful for Sony and managed to sell more than 8 million copies with a 35% sales ratio for digital versus retail. It grossed more than 400 million in revenue for Sony.
Naughty Dog is one of the most profitable studios for Sony. Their two franchises, The Last of Us, and Uncharted, have grossed more than 1 billion in revenue. The same can be said for Ghost of Tsushima, which was a massive success for Sony even outselling Horizon Zero Dawn as the fastest-selling new IP this generation.






 

Cyberpunkd

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Single player games dying etc etc
I don’t want to belittle Sony’s SP effort (I personally play only SP games) but GAAS games have profits much larger than that. It’s just a question of what’s the best Return on Investment. For Sony games like that push console adoption, which in turn increases profits from PSS. Non-platform holders do not care about that.
 
Mar 27, 2020
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Uncharted bunghole
I don’t want to belittle Sony’s SP effort (I personally play only SP games) but GAAS games have profits much larger than that. It’s just a question of what’s the best Return on Investment. For Sony games like that push console adoption, which in turn increases profits from PSS. Non-platform holders do not care about that.

Only the successful GaaS games do. The majority don't have profits anywhere near those revenues. Anyways these single player IPs are still really profitable for Sony to make. I don't think they will abandon them anytime soon.
 
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Kokoloko85

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Nice. This gives the studios more so they can make more games. PS4 was a great generation for 1st party games and Single player games.

I wonder how much Nintendo make with games like Mario Kart, Smash and Animal Crossing which probably cost much less to develop.
 
Mar 27, 2020
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Agreed, everyone thinking their next GAAS game will be a hit reminds me of everyone trying 10 years ago to make a World of Warcraft killer.

It can certainly happen but it's alot more difficult due to all the competition that there is in that market.

Also successful single player games are not easy to make especially the ones on the same level as Sonys. It's also a risk to choose to make a single player title instead of a highly profitable low budget multiplayer title.
 

DonJorginho

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This just makes their £70 pricing look even worse, greed and nothing more behind that decision, they know they'll sell big figures, they're making huge profits, yet they want more and more, I hope titles like Returnal flop so they rethink their pricing structure as there is no way the masses will accept paying those prices during a mass recession.
 

Kuranghi

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HZD? Pfffffffffffffffffffffffffft!

I'm told the coffee cup collectibles were shit, so by extension the whole game was shit.

*whispers* Its about the journey guys, not picking up the cup.
 

Kuranghi

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This just makes their £70 pricing look even worse, greed and nothing more behind that decision, they know they'll sell big figures, they're making huge profits, yet they want more and more, I hope titles like Returnal flop so they rethink their pricing structure as there is no way the masses will accept paying those prices during a mass recession.

Nooooooo, don't do that Don, I want that to be good. I'm going to buy two copies just to spite you now.
 
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Entroyp

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This just makes their £70 pricing look even worse, greed and nothing more behind that decision, they know they'll sell big figures, they're making huge profits, yet they want more and more, I hope titles like Returnal flop so they rethink their pricing structure as there is no way the masses will accept paying those prices during a mass recession.

You want housemarque to suffer because you don’t want to pay $10 more?

How about you just don’t buy the game and leave it at that?
 

nowhat

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Radical_3d

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I wonder how much Nintendo make with games like Mario Kart, Smash and Animal Crossing which probably cost much less to develop.
They opened a bloody amusement park with the theme of one of its less successful consoles. That’s how they are doing. They really don’t know what to do with so much money.
 
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DonJorginho

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You want housemarque to suffer because you don’t want to pay $10 more?

How about you just don’t buy the game and leave it at that?

Nooooooo, don't do that Don, I want that to be good. I'm going to buy two copies just to spite you now.
It's the point that the game doesn't look anywhere near as good as other top Sony games, yet it's priced more than top titles like GOW, GoT and Bloodborne, it's insane! Returnal should be priced at a similar amount to Deathloop, it is literally getting shafted by Sony, they're setting up Housemarque to suffer by pricing their game at an extremely high level with no reason as to why, it doesn't look groundbreaking, it certainly won't be better than the three titles I mentioned, and we've seen barely any raw gameplay, it comes out in like 3 months!
 
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Ywap

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Great news! I´m a pc gamer but it makes me happy that great sp games is selling this well :messenger_smiling_hearts:

If the majority of the ps5 games will be 60fps i might end up getting one :messenger_horns:
 
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DonJorginho

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Sony making mistakes and you asking the game to flop are two different things. Let them rethink what they need or not to do.
Now, thats a bad take for any dev team trying to make a new IP.
I don't want the game to flop in general, but if they're going to charge £70 for an unproven IP where the game looks more AA than AAA, then I'm going to hope it sells poorly to send Sony a message. Sony are trying to hide their arrogance like a Viagra user hiding his hard on in a brothel.
 
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Woggleman

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Both great games and not to mention all the other great games Sony made. I have a good feeling about Horizon 2. I have a feeling they will go all out with it.
 

Amiga

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These are big budget Hollywood blockbuster numbers. Games have come a long way.


I don’t want to belittle Sony’s SP effort (I personally play only SP games) but GAAS games have profits much larger than that. .


Peanuts compared to GAAS.

how many GAAS succeed? the failure rate is high, many developers and publishers going bankrupt perusing this. while the investors who mandate it parachute out after liquidating all they can.

single player games are more secure finically. a reliable expected fanbase targeted with a realistic budget. games like Persona and Yakuza can be sustainable franchises. if Avengers budget and game design was focused on SP, it could have also made half a billion. and plenty of profit.
 
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Panajev2001a

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I don't want the game to flop in general, but if they're going to charge £70 for an unproven IP where the game looks more AA than AAA, then I'm going to hope it sells poorly to send Sony a message. Sony are trying to hide their arrogance like a Viagra user hiding his hard on in a brothel.

I think I get a lot angrier with live services from big publishers, like big AAAA with DLC’s and micro transactions based on popular IP that help market themselves which deserve that price tag less than smaller publishers or developers that take a far far bigger risk with original new IP’s.
 
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SkylineRKR

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Sony is king of SP.

On PS3 they were clearly trying to get where they are now. I think most of those were good, but not great. Uncharted 2 was top tier. Killzone 2 was good, but had some shortcomings. One of the best MPs I have played though. Infamous 1 and 2 were good but a bit short of great. God of War 3 was good, but I liked 2 more. Ascension was eh.

But on PS4? God of War and Horizon are top tier (Both SSM and Guerrilla's best games yet imho). Spiderman is very good, the best Insomniac game since A Crack in Time (which I would say was one of the very best PS3 single player games period, Ghost of Tsushima is god tier, easily SP's best game period. TLOU 2 is divisive but I think its top tier. I think Lost Legacy is the best Uncharted, and 4 was at least better than 3. Even Days Gone, by Bend, rocky start but I think its fantastic on PS5 now.

PS4 started out mediocre with Shadow Fall and Knack (sorry) and Second Son wasn't as good as Infamous 2. But they somehow upped their game big time. Here's hoping Rift Apart at least rivals A Crack in Time.
 
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Not to belittle Guerrilla's achievement, the article says a) over 45M (they don't say the exact amount) and b) with major AAA releases it's safe to assume 1:1 split between development and marketing costs.

Still, even with a total budget of 100M (including marketing) it's a very good return for a new IP.


Its not safe to asume that at all. Especially for a smaller game like Horizon was. 45 million is cheap as fuck. Keep in mind Darksiders 2 for example cost 50 million dollars and it came out in 2012. Crysis 2 cost 45 million dollars and came out in 2011. You can see how Horizon was so cheap because it was extremely short, around 15 hours with some sidequests and the pretty barren world with not much to do. You can tell it was made inexpensively.

Back in 2018 Eidos Montreal was saying development costs are in the ballpark of 75 to 100 million dollars. With around 35 million for marketing. But Horizon definitely had much lower than that for marketing as it was a year and a half before this was said and it was viewed by sony as a more risky investment due to having a female protagonist, which the devs claim they had to fight for it against sony.

"Shadow of the Tomb Raider, and other different AAA single-player games, cost $75 million to $100 million," Anfossi admits. "And that's production only; it's close to $35 million on the promotion.



All in all, Horizon was a very cheap game in comparisson to most other AAA games and it surelly made a lot of revenue due to that. Despite being a very by the numbers and mediocre game
 
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nowhat

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You can see how Horizon was so cheap because it was extremely short, around 15 hours with some sidequests

And still, there was a considerable marketing push for it. Not only traditional marketing, but also stuff like flying in journalists beforehand to play for a few hours to hype it before review copies were sent out. Hell, they build a real-life replica of a Watcher (not to scale though, to fit a person inside to move it).