Crossgen releases are nothing new and they’ve been around since console generations have existed, so it’s no surprise that Sony isn’t leaving its 110 million PS4 players out in the cold when it comes to new exclusives.
Herman Hulst, head of PlayStation Studios, has hinted today that some previously announced PS5 exclusives, including the recently delayed God of War Ragnarok, could actually be making their way to PS4, as was the case with Horizon Forbidden West – which may or may not be delayed past its holiday 2021 release window.
Speaking in an interview with the PlayStation Blog (wonder how they landed this guest appearance?) the PlayStation Studios boss was asked about where the PS4 factors into the ongoing plans for PlayStation Studios.
Hulst said: “Where it makes sense to develop a title for both PS4 and PS5 — for Horizon Forbidden West, God of War, GT7 — we’ll continue looking at that. And if PS4 owners want to play that game, then they can. If they want to go on and play the PS5 version, that game will be there for them, ” before following up with “it’s also very important to have showpieces for PS5, hence the development of Returnal and Ratchet that are exclusive to PS5.”
For PS4 owners who for whatever reason can’t get hold of a PS5, this is great news, and it does make sense for Sony to keep that massive audience engaged. Games cost money to make, and if you can only sell those high-cost games to a low-number player base on PS5, you’re not going to make the money back. It’s simple economics. Still, some will worry that by forcing developers to cater to both PS4 and PS5, the games won’t be using the PS5 to its full potential, which is a fair argument.