Call Of Duty

Elder Scrolls 6 Xbox exclusivity is a bigger threat to Sony than Call of Duty

Elder Scrolls 6 Xbox exclusivity is a bigger threat to Sony than Call of Duty
Written by ga_dahmani
Elder Scrolls 6 Xbox exclusivity is a bigger threat to Sony than Call of Duty

Until recently, Sony has done a good job of keeping quiet about the fact that Microsoft has been gobbling up some of the biggest third-party publishers in the industry, but it finally looks like Sony is starting to feel the pressure. They didn’t exactly go public in admitting they feel the weight of Microsoft buying companies like Bethesda and Activision-Blizzard, but in an official response to Brazil’s regulatory body (via VGC), Sony admitted that the importance of Call of Duty “is indescribable” and effectively said that the game is capable of single-handedly waging the console war. Here is the key point:

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“Call of Duty is so popular that it influences users’ choice of console, and its loyal user community is so entrenched that even if a competitor had the budget to develop a similar product, they wouldn’t be able to compete with it. the”.

Now, Sony is not wrong. Call of Duty is one of the biggest game franchises in the world. Just a couple of months ago, it reached 420 million historical sales, making it the third best-selling game series of all time. Their latest release, Modern Warfare (2019), recently surpassed 30 million sales and is on track to become the most popular Call of Duty entry to date.

Call of Duty is indeed such a commercial franchise that is the kind of game most casual gamers buy without even thinking about it. Go to someone’s house who doesn’t play that many games, and they probably have Call of Duty, some triple-A exclusives for that console, possibly an Assassin’s Creed or two, and [EA Sports game of choice] On the shelf. It’s the kind of game that many players who may not have time to find their ‘dream online shooter’ will automatically buy. I know this because I used to do this myself, lining up outside the local supermarket to get heavily discounted versions of Modern Warfare 1-3 on launch day on the PS3. I didn’t even count CoD among my favorite games – it was simply a default game, a baseline for a 20-something console owner like me.

Credit: Activision

Of course, Call of Duty also has a highly engaged hardcore community that genuinely loves these games, but it also draws in a more casual gaming audience, an audience that isn’t necessarily willing to go through the awkwardness of following it to another game console. . in case the exclusivity of the platform is activated.

The next Elder Scrolls, however, is another story.

The Elder Scrolls series may not be as prolific as Call of Duty, but that’s part of what gives it its prestige and mystique. The frequency with which Call of Duty games are released means that their annual or semi-annual releases become almost background noise, just as surely as there will be an annual FIFA release, there will also be a near-annual CoD release. Meanwhile, the next Elder Scrolls will come out 13-15 years after its predecessor, and in part that’s because 11-year-old Skyrim has continually brought Bethesda commercial success through its many ports, re-releases, and the modding community.

The drawing power of RPGs has grown exponentially since Skyrim in 2011 (largely thanks to the game itself). Just look at the incredible popularity of The Witcher 3, or Elden Ring, which I can confirm from many baffled Facebook posts. No the game that many expected from an ‘open world RPG’. Yes, Elden Ring is wonderful in many ways (even if Cuphead is better at some of them), but there’s no doubt that part of its success can be attributed to a strong marketing campaign, George RR Martin, and the modern charm of the epic fantasy RPG, rather than the nature of the game itself, which was a brutal reality check for many naive FromSoft-style gamers.

With all of that in mind, the launch of The Elder Scrolls 6 may well be one of the biggest events in gaming history, and it’s one that Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer has already suggested game owners should be aware of. Playstation will not participate. I imagine Sony’s console might get it a few years later, but by then the console wars might well have turned in Microsoft’s favour. The cultural capital of Elder Scrolls 6 exclusivity will be unparalleled, especially since the series is known for being cross-platform (although technically only the last two installments, Oblivion and Skyrim, were).

As a business asset, Call of Duty will no doubt be valuable to Microsoft, but the company itself has already recognized that it’s better to keep the series cross-platform than restrict it to Xbox. In February 2022, Microsoft President Brad Smith said that Call of Duty. “We have made a commitment to Sony that we will also make them available on PlayStation beyond the existing agreement and into the future so that Sony fans can continue to enjoy the games they love,” says Smith. That’s by no means a ‘forever’ promise, but it also suggests that Call of Duty may simply be more lucrative for Microsoft as a cross-platform game rather than the ‘prestige’ exclusive that The Elder Scrolls 6 may be.

If Sony doesn’t seem as perturbed by the prospect of Elder Scrolls 6 exclusivity as it is by Call of Duty, perhaps that’s because the game is still some way off. The good thing about that for Sony is that it can prepare for the seismic impact of an Xbox-only Elder Scrolls 6 by working on its own exclusive stellar production over the next two years, as well as acquiring its own third-party stable. The bad news is that it’s hard to see what could fill the gap in the form of the Elder Scrolls (or more specifically, in the form of High Rock and Hammerfell) on Playstation’s future slate.

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