I'm surprised....but not surprised?
Well here's the thing. We all know Playstation is dominating this gaming generation with their PS4 and game exclusives and even though they have some of its own issues such as cross-play till like few months ago, they're a huge behemoth as of this post. Even in 2019 there's still gonna be some exlcusives for PS4 such as Days Gone, Ghost of Tsushima, Medievil Remake? and maybe Dreams (oh man that game is AWESOME).
So now we hear that they're not joining E3 2019 people would be like "OMG SONY SUCKS XBOX WON GO BACK WITH YOUR STUPID PERFORMANCE" or something. Sounds like a huge missed opportunity right?
I'd say it's a yes....but also no. Why?
Because they don't really need it. And they know at this point E3 isn't gonna be as beneficial as their alternative options. Let me explain the factors.
1. PS5 possibility of announcement at PSX
2019 is Playstation's 25th anniversary and we're already at the end of a gaming generation. Game developers and gamers are both getting ready for what the next gen of gaming is gonna be. So how does this relate to Sony not joining E3? Well, here's the thing. Playstation has their own conference/game shows/version of "Nintendo Direct" called Playstation Experience. If you never heard of it, well that's because you don't usually get excited for stuffs like these aside from Nintendo Directs. If you did, props to you then. Sony/PS is known for having their PS conferences on their own such as Paris Gaming Show, Tokyo Game Show (literally, they're HUGE over there) and Playstation Experience which is basically their biggest self-made conference. So what better way to announce their newest PS5 console (or any of their stuffs) at their own conference? Its like how Nintendo announced the Switch at their own conference back in Jan 2017 which btw got like a lot of hype and a bit of skepticism. Announcing at their own conference benefits them more than at E3.
But won't E3 simply solidify or benefit for Sony for being the biggest conference worldwide? Well....it WAS.
2. E3 does not favour Sony
So yeah, we all know since 2017 Sony haven't really 'won' the best E3 performance reward as that's either taken by Nintendo, Xbox or anything that is NOT Electronic Arts. Yet, they can still perform admirably with their exclusives announcements and of course weird but enjoyable performances (despite the goddamn trolls and haters not providing fair criticism. Hey, I'm a PS fan but I know this year Playstation had some pacing problem with their performance).
But let's look back at E3 2018. People said that Microsoft dominated Sony because the latter only had exclusives. Which is true. But Sony now understands that E3 isn't going to favor them that much because every 3rd party developer wants to announce their games FIRST. Guess who's one of the earliest presenters that is not EA? Xbox. Xbox lately have been fixing their mistakes and trying to buy game studios and be more open to their genres and variety compared to their previous years. Xbox basically stole them from Sony since Playstation has the disadvantage of presenting second-last before Nintendo. In summary, Playstation's only weapon to win E3 are their exclusives which may not be enough since Xbox got some of the bigger crazes such as Cyberpunk 2077 and Dying Light and so on. If Sony were to go to E3 2019, there is a CHANCE that Microsoft will dominate again for being early and open. This isn't by any means a "mistake" Sony makes, this is more of a precaution because Playstation is aware of their competitors strengths and weaknesses. If E3 mostly favours their rivals, they may as well not waste their assets and money on it and pour the E3 money into their own conferences. Who knows? I could be wrong but strategically speaking, they choose their fights wisely.
And last but not least:
3. Winning E3 is not really much of an 'achievement" worth doing.
E3 is Electronic Entertainment conference. Just a huge international conference for developers and publishers to promote and market their products. Sony is already a brand everyone knows including niche countries or regions and as such, they don't really need to win or dominate E3 even though it would be a huge boost to them. Microsoft and Nintendo needs E3 because it's a perfect place to promote. Sony? They are already putting their territory over South East Asia, Japan, China (yeah, thats HUGE btw) and almost the entire West but America which is Xbox home territory. They don't need E3 when they have the worldwide market under their thumb. While I do think this would cause some arrogance to Playstation for being number 1, atm they're REALLY playing well with their library and games. E3 2018 Sony lost to both Xbox and Nintendo in terms of content but exclusives. But if you go outside of E3, you just realized that Sony has like a bunch of AAA titles or less taking GOTY nominees or other rewards in Game Awards 2018 which is already dominated with PS exclusives titles. GOW even got like 8 Nominees let me tell you.
E3 is a battle Sony may have lost, but the war is what they can and will win as long they pump out a lot of great exclusives. And they don't need to battle at E3 to win, when they know they can just stomp in the global gaming market. Moreover, Nintendo did the same thing before since all they need is just their Nintendo Directs which btw can end up being a lot better than most presentations. So if you think E3 is what determines a company's success or failure, you're only looking at one angle of the industry.
This is Yukimazan. Thank you for reading. You may discuss whether you agree or disagree or wish to talk about it or bring something up. More learning the merrier.
Listening to: OSTs from favourite games
Playing: Indie Games