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Opinion Business Game Dev Sony says it will ‘aggressively’ invest in first-party studios and partnerships this year

Loope

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So plenty of timed exclusives and money spend to prevent the games to be released on Gamepass. Yep we already guessed that Jim.

Stop It Chris Hemsworth GIF by NETFLIX
 

Shelookdlvl18

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I don't need to be the track record and sales speaks for themselves. Developers have said that alot Microsoft's exclusives won't be ready in the next 2 years. Meanwhile Sony has exclusives this year and i'm sure they have quite a bit ready for next year.
And how exactly does any of this^, have to do with what you posted previously, or my reply to it?

It's like you're reading off the offical Sony fanboy cue cards or something. Lol
 

SNG32

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And how exactly does any of this^, have to do with what you posted previously, or my reply to it?

It's like you're reading off the offical Sony fanboy cue cards or something. Lol
Do you think that Microsoft will surpass Sony this Gen?
 

xShaun

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They invested more than $4B internally, that's just an increase of the total yearly budget of internal growth of current studios.
There is no need to be upset. I understand the 0.2B is an increment. I don't believe I said it wasn't.

I just hope they use it on new first party games and not to moneyhat 3rd party games.
 
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sublimit

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What i like with Sony is that their moves are very careful and razor sharp precise and that they are not rushing to buy every studio they can buy just to grow their list of first party studios.

Insomniac was one of their smartest acquisitions ever so i'm curious to see who will be next. Blue Point and Housemarque make sense to us fans but maybe Sony has set their sights on another studio/publisher as a priority. Maybe someone much bigger who can cover holes in their portfolio like multiplayer games.

I'm not a big fan of the studio personally but a studio like Bungie for example would have made a lot of sense for Sony.
 
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yurinka

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More studio investment and less "partnerships" ideally.
They say in the article they will increase the money spent on their studios in $183M compared to the previous year. It's an insane, unusual amount of money. Sounds like they bought/will buy a studio this year and will grow a lot their existing studios.

I assume that if Returnal sells well and get good reviews they will buy Housemarque. And if not Bluepoint. Kojipro would be another option but I think that if Kojima left Konami and went independent instead of creating a studio for a big publisher it's because he doesn't want to sell and wants to remain independent so unless (something didn't happen until now) he goes too crazy with future games that don't sell making publishers not wanting to fund and publish his future games and he runs out of money (something I think won't happen), I think Kojima won't sell.

Appears that Sony has seen the downside of having all your developers work closely with each other, sharing tools, feedback, etc... Hopefully a chunk of that 183 mil goes towards a dev group that will work with one of the groups involved in those 3rd party deals.

This has the potential to lead to very good things down the road.
"We intend to increase development personnel and other in-house costs by approximately 20bn yen [$183m] year-on-year, as we further strengthen our in-house software"

These extra $183M compared to the previous year are to increase 1st party development studio staff. This means they are to hire a ton of people and probably buy some studio.

It's a different budget of what they have to moneyhat 3rd party deal, and different of what they have for 2nd party games.


And this is why I don't understand why Sony Stans were doing doom and gloom. Even though Microsoft has the money Sony has the userbase where it's hard to deny third party developers not putting there games on their platform. Hell even Microsoft knows this that's why you will see a few Bethesda games on a Sony game console maybe not all but you will see a few. Sony will continue to have the edge over Mircrosoft gamepass or not.
I think Sony has the userbase because in addition to the very strong support from multiplatform games, every year and generation they also have more 1st, 2nd and 3rd party exclusives than Nintendo and Microsoft.

And not only more, they are also more diverse: they cover a wider range of niches. As an example, see the fighting games: they have console exclusivity for games like Street Fighter V, King of Fighters XIV or Guilty Gear Strive making it the console of preference for the fighting game community, that also uses PS as the platform by default for the tournaments for that reason (the also prefer to use console because it's cheaper than a gaming PC and makes sure all have the same performance). And combining a few million users from a certain niche, a few millions from another one, a few more due to their own exclusives, etc. they end having a huge userbase, that creates a critical mass that makes some people to recommend their platform by default.

If they hired folks at a $100,000 an employee that would be like 1,800 extra developers a year and would nearly double what they have right now. This is all wishful thinking of course.
It depends on the country. In almost all European and Asian countries the cost of a AAA dev is closer to a third of these 100K, and in a few of them is around the half. Only a few countries like USA or Canada have these 100K+ salaries. It's an insane increase compared to what they have.

According to https://growjo.com this is the amount of staff their main studios have:
ND: 504 employees (+20% last year)
Sony Santa Monica: 426 (+33% last year)
Insomniac: 396 (+20% last year)
Sucker Punch: 204 (+13% last year)
Bend Studio: 134 (+8% last year)

According to wikipedia:
Guerrilla: 350+ (March 2021)
Polyphony: 170 (April 2021)

According to LinkedIn:
London Studio: 51-200
Media Molecule: 51-200
XDev: 11-50

Unknown:
Sony San Diego
Japan Studio
Pixelopus

Seems that approximately they plan to double their headcount in a year.
 
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Thirty7ven

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Yeah gotta love how people are quietly trying to turn PC into Xbox. Just because you can play a PC version of an Xbox studios game on PC, it doesn't mean you are playing Xbox. It means you are playing a Xbox studios game. Borrowing clout and all that.

Playing Playstation games through streaming on my phone didn't turn the mobile phone platorm into the Playstation platform.
 
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fermcr

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Sony are basically going to invest in more 3rd party exclusives, timed exclusives and forced parity.
 
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Yeah the difference is that one locks a userbase out forever, and the other doesn't.

The actual difference is that one does nothing but prevent other people from playing it for a period of time, which benefits nobody but the companies, the other one gives the studio incredible amounts of financial security, as well as way more resources that is provided by being a 1st party studio (like vast collaboration or help from the other 1st party studios for instance), which allows games to become better or more polished or more creative or in some cases allows the studio to not be shut down.

Timed exclusive games are a cancer in the industry and I hope all the companies stop doing them. Even as a primary Xbox gamer I'd much rather Sony buy Square Enix than just have the ridiculous amount of timed exclusives, because in the case of the acquisition at least the games would almost certainly be better, and smaller studios at Square Enix might have more security.

The only games that should ever be exclusive to any platform are 1st party games, 2nd/3rd party games using 1st party IP, or games that wouldn't have existed without a 1st party company (something like tons of help in developing the game, or being published by them, or a 1st party contracting another company to make an exclusive game).
 

killatopak

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If they ever buy a studio, I hope it’s something completely different from their developer portfolio.

Personally, I want them to buy Arc System Works. It helps with their EVO acquisition plus they own Aniplex and FGO. Easy Fate Stay/Night money if they make a fighting game with that.
 

Bo_Hazem

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Holy shit. No wonder they’re killing it right now.

Read the OP:

- SIE has invested $4Bn since 2019 (organic/internal growth)

Can you imagine how massive to it is to invest $4B on internal studios in a yearly basis! That's the real Warchest.

 

Entroyp

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Read the OP:

- SIE has invested $4Bn since 2019 (organic/internal growth)

Can you imagine how massive to it is to invest $4B on internal studios in a yearly basis! That's the real Warchest.


Not having a rich daddy to buy your success brings out the best in you.
 

reksveks

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Lol, I've seen it all now. Xbox is PC now, oh man
Yeah gotta love how people are quietly trying to turn PC into Xbox. Just because you can play a PC version of an Xbox studios game on PC, it doesn't mean you are playing Xbox. It means you are playing a Xbox studios game. Borrowing clout and all that.

Playing Playstation games through streaming on my phone didn't turn the mobile phone platorm into the Playstation platform.

You guys really don't read the comments well.

Is the success of the Apple TV service linked to the success of the Apple TV hardware?

Xbox (the service/brand/platform if you want) is not intrinsically linked to the console anymore.
 
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normalguy09x

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"

Sony says it will ‘aggressively’ invest in first-party studios and partnerships this year"​


That is exactly what Sony does. They are always consistent on this every generation. And that is why I buy their consoles.
 

Azurro

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They bought the whole company. Nothing more to see here. You can play it on their hardware (i know the thought makes you physically ill) or just play on PC.

I haven't played Bethesda games much, pretty much only Doom, so there's no need to get physically ill. :)

My point is that, if someone is somehow offended by the existence of timed exclusives, then how come the same people were ecstatic when MS bought Bethesda?
 
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183m year on year across all those studios isn't that much when by default teams would already need to increase in size to proper leverage the possibilities of next gen development. This is also the generation of hollywood talent coming to get their share of the pie.

It's a shame to see them continue being so conservative and showing such lack of balls for the future. You just know some of these old timers running the show are bothered by the fact that PlayStation is Sony's Michael Jordan, as they are acting like fucking Jerry Krause. Lame asses need to realize that PS going up means every
division at Sony can go up and up.


183M/yr in operating expenses is close to 1,000 extra devs per year across WWS.

I would say that’s pretty significant. Equivalent to over three Naughty Dogs

SlimySnake SlimySnake
 
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NahaNago

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It depends on the country. In almost all European and Asian countries the cost of a AAA dev is closer to a third of these 100K, and in a few of them is around the half. Only a few countries like USA or Canada have these 100K+ salaries.
I was just averaging it out. I figure most developers are below a 100k
"

Sony says it will ‘aggressively’ invest in first-party studios and partnerships this year"​


That is exactly what Sony does. They are always consistent on this every generation. And that is why I buy their consoles.
This is great I just would like for them to create a new AAA Japanese first party studio.
 

Holammer

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That's a budget strategy to fight Microsofts recent high profile ZeniMax Media acquisition, but MS can play that game too.
 
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Thirty7ven

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You guys really don't read the comments well.

Is the success of the Apple TV service linked to the success of the Apple TV hardware?

Xbox (the service/brand) is not intrinsically to the console anymore.

Xbox is not a service. Xbox Gamepass is a service, Xcloud is a service. Xbox is a brand, and the Xbox Series are branded platforms. PC isn't a branded platform, it's an open platform. Personal Computer. When people play PC, they play... PC. Nobody is going to turn around and say "I'm playing Xbox", even though that's what astroturfing is trying to do.

Apple Tv is not a service. It's a dongle you plug into a TV. Apple Tv+ is the service, and nobody turns around and says "I'm watching Apple" when watching a show on that service, streaming on their TV.

A PC is not a Xbox. You can play Xbox Studios games on PC, you can subscribe to Xbox game pass on PC. But PC doesn't disappear from the picture, just like it doesn't when you play a Playstation studios on PC or on your phone.

Electronic Arts isn't a box, it's a videogame brand and they have never been a brand chained to a console. They have a service in EA play, and they are on PC too. And guess what, that doesn't make PC EA. It just means EA games and services are available on PC.

It's just another clever attempt at dispersing coded language to create a fake image. I hate that shit, because when companies try to do that, they are calling us idiots.
 
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Thirty7ven

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183M/yr in operating expenses is close to 1,000 extra devs per year across WWS.

I would say that’s pretty significant. Equivalent to over three Naughty Dogs

Don't forget outsourcing, actors, equipment upgrades, facilities upgrades. It's all included. When Naughty Dog needs to outsource, that comes out of their budget.
 

Dabaus

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They are saying that this is the amount by which they will increase YoY investment. We dont know what is the base amount to which they will add that 184M
I gotya. I read where sony is planning spending 18 billion on acquisitions for the next 3 years. Thats for all of sony, not just playStation though
 
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reksveks

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Xbox is not a service. Xbox Gamepass is a service, Xcloud is a service. Xbox is a brand, and the Xbox Series are branded platforms. PC isn't a branded platform, it's an open platform. Personal Computer. When people play PC, they play... PC. Nobody is going to turn around and say "I'm playing Xbox", even though that's what astroturfing is trying to do.

A PC is not a Xbox. You can play Xbox Studios games on PC, you can subscribe to Xbox game pass on PC. But PC doesn't disappear from the picture
, just like it doesn't when you play a Playstation studios on PC or on your phone.

It's just another clever attempt at dispersing coded language to create a fake image. I hate that shit, because when companies try to do that, they are calling us idiots.

Who said that? You are accessing the Xbox platform from a PC when you use the Xbox app/Xcloud. No-one is really equating PC = Xbox. The argument is over the definition of a 'platform', roblox is a platform as is facebook even if it uses 3rd party hardware to access it.

If you are playing PS Now on a PC then you are interacting the Playstation platform and that's what all they care about. They can then upsell you a console.
 
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Greggy

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I'm not sure there is a difference, as in what you said, the next Doom, Fallout and Elder Scrolls, unless something catastrophic happens, should have been guaranteed successes on PS5, and MS paid a lot more to guarantee that never happens.

Regardless, we agree that the outrage shouldn't be selective. :)
Not every Bethesda IP that Microsoft purchased as part of the acquisition is a commercial hit but I'm sure you got my point. They didn't just exclusivity on Doom and Fallout, which would have been financially very safe. However, they have done exclusivity deals in the past, which is why complaining would be a double standard. I just happen to think that Bethesda doesn't belong in the same bag as all the other examples of manufacturers locking gamers out based on their device, especially when everything is coming to PC and smartphones.
 
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Don't forget outsourcing, actors, equipment upgrades, facilities upgrades. It's all included. When Naughty Dog needs to outsource, that comes out of their budget.

I realize that, but I still think it’s a pretty significant increase

growth is also difficult to manage, so there’s only so much of an increase you can tolerate organically
 
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SlimySnake

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183m year on year across all those studios isn't that much when by default teams would already need to increase in size to proper leverage the possibilities of next gen development. This is also the generation of hollywood talent coming to get their share of the pie.

It's a shame to see them continue being so conservative and showing such lack of balls for the future. You just know some of these old timers running the show are bothered by the fact that PlayStation is Sony's Michael Jordan, as they are acting like fucking Jerry Krause. Lame asses need to realize that PS going up means every division at Sony can go up and up.
It's infuriating to see sony be so conservative. I think there is some truth to how PS is treated like a stepson when they are the ones bringing in all the money. That said, like James Sawyer Ford James Sawyer Ford said, $183 million is a lot of money to invest in one year.

Personally i'd rather it be close to $500 million because its clear to me that gaming is their most profitable venture, but $200 million in first party studios is nothing to scoff at. I'd argue that its a bit too late since those new hires wont really start to release games 3-4 years down the line but while we might see some really dry spells from Sony in the next 2-3 years, their mid to end gen should be stacked with games.
 

yurinka

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183M/yr in operating expenses is close to 1,000 extra devs per year across WWS.

I would say that’s pretty significant. Equivalent to over three Naughty Dogs

SlimySnake SlimySnake
No, unless we're talking an executive/lead/very serior working in USA or Canada (which are less than 0.1% of the total devs), a dev doesn't cost 183K. Specially Europe and even less in Asia. We're talking about over 2000 new devs, probably over 3000 devs.

I'd bet they will increase the headcount of their existing 1st party studios in ~20%, in addition to buy one or two studios and maybe open at least an outsourcing support studio somewhere in Asia.

Sony bought Insomniac for $229 million.

So it may be the equivalent to .7 Insomniacs, rather than 3x Naughty Dogs.
One thing is the cost of purchasing a studio. Another thing is the cost of paying their salaries and other office/worker related costs.
 
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No, unless we're talking an executive/lead/very serior working in USA or Canada (which are less than 0.1% of the total devs), a dev doesn't cost 183K. Specially Europe and even less in Asia. We're talking about over 2000 new devs, probably over 3000 devs.

I'd bet they will increase the headcount of their existing 1st party studios in ~20%, in addition to buy one or two studios and maybe open at least an outsourcing support studio somewhere in Asia.


One thing is the cost of purchasing a studio. Another thing is the cost of paying their salaries and other office/worker related costs.

1,000 devs x 2,000 hrs/yr x $91/hr = 183M

I don’t know if $91/hr is overstated but that includes overhead costs and benefits per hour on average per employee

note; this doesn’t mean the employee is directly earning this hourly rate, just what it costs the company to employ them on average when factoring in everything
 
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