The pressure is mounting on Sony to offer a proper response to Xbox Game Pass. Microsoft has been aggressively pushing their subscription service, even making the Sony-developed MLB the Show 21 a Day One Game Pass release through a backdoor deal with the MLB itself, while Sony hasn’t has much to say or announce in response. Of course, Sony has the PlayStation Now subscription service, which is actually relatively popular, but it doesn’t capture the headlines or feel like a real system-seller like Xbox Game Pass. PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan has hinted a more direct, forceful response to Game Pass is coming, but declined to provide further details. When might we learn more?
Well, on the most recent episode of his podcast, outspoken God of War creator David Jaffe teased Sony is indeed working on a proper “counterpunch” to Xbox Game Pass (thanks to Video Games Chronicle for surfacing the quote).
We had the guy on the show yesterday that had made the petition to fire Jim Ryan and I was like, ‘Dude, that’s way premature’ because Jim Ryan doesn’t owe anybody, Sony doesn’t owe anybody, the truth about what’s coming and what their counterpunch to Game Pass is. What I can tell you is I know they are doing some stuff because I know people at Sony who have told me that they are doing some stuff. There will be a response to Game Pass.
Now, let’s not mince word, David Jaffe is a controversial figure these days and hasn’t worked for Sony for a while now. That said, it’s also pretty clear he still has contacts within the company and has accurately spilled the tea on PlayStation-related matters in the past. So, it’s up to you to decide how much salt to take this with. As for what form Sony’s Game Pass counterpunch might take, Jaffe says he doesn’t know, but he hopes it isn’t just a souped-up PlayStation Now…
What [Sony’s Game Pass response is] we don’t know. Here’s what I would say I worry about. If Jim Ryan thinks the proper response to Game Pass is to emulate backwards compatibility, PS3 games, PS2, PS1, and then to also add Trophies, which is what that patent suggests they’re going to do, and they’re also going to fold in all the movies and s–t and make a streaming service, he’s absolutely wrong if he thinks that mixing it with PS Now [is the way to go].
What do you think? How should Sony respond to what Microsoft is doing? Should they just go for it with a PlayStation Game Pass or is there another path?