I’m still waiting for Jack Tretton to mail me my $8400 and I’m rather sure the guys from Penny Arcade haven’t received their $13200 either. Now another Sony exec is back making outrageous claims. David Reeves, president of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe declared that the PS3 “will be far and away the winner when you look at it by March ’08”. He must know something the rest of us don’t because, well, let’s add it up.
The biggest weaknesses of the PS3 console lie in it’s price and the number of must-have games available at the moment. The recent price drops are a good start but if you look at the list of upcoming games for the PS3 between now and March of next year, there aren’t very many big time games like GTA: IV, Rock Band, Assassin’s Creed or Stranglehold that are exclusive to Sony’s system. What’s worse is that the some upcoming games available on the PS3 were released earlier on the Nintendo Wii or XBOX 360. While there is almost no doubt that the Playstation 3 will eventually be a successful system, I don’t think it will be as early at March, considering the serious big boys that are exclusive to Sony such as the Final Fantasy and Gran Turismo have very few details available and it’s safe to say that neither franchise will have a game released by then. The fourth installment of the Metal Gear Solid series MAY be out by March ’08 but it will be cutting it too close to have any sort of real effect on console sales in time to usurp either the Wii or 360.
Wii sales have not slowed down since the release in November of last year and Nintendo predicts that the sales and subsequent shortage of Wii consoles will continue through the ’07 holiday season. I still have yet to see a Wii on an actual store shelf while my store (which doesn’t sell Nintendo products…) has had the same four PS3 consoles on our shelves for nearly three months now. The Xbox will see a variety of marquee releases later this year including Bioshock which will continue the steady pace of 360 sales. Considering how much older Microsoft’s system is compared to the Wii and PS3, you can’t count them out of the race.
If the Playstation is to reign supreme as early as March ’08, they really have to make a serious drastic change because current trends don’t look good. The Wii continues to outsell it and while it is ahead of 360 sales, that ground is quickly lost when you consider how many more games Xbox owners purchase or have purchased since late 2005. Who knows…maybe David Reeves has a rabbit to pull out of his hat but honestly, I think he’ll end up too busy with his foot in his mouth.