System 3 CEO Mark Cale believes the long seven-year gap between the launch of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 and the arrival of next-generation systems has affected the market dramatically.
“The delay was making the PS3 feel very old and it was restricting the market size to the point where a lot of people were walking away from console gaming, or even just go to play on a smart-phone,” he told PSU in an exclusive telephone interview.
Cale, who founded the independent developer and publisher in 1982 and has been involved with producing games on a variety of systems, handhelds and consoles, believes that this is crunch time for both Sony and Microsoft.
“This is the most important console launch for both companies in the history of video games,” he said. “It’s make or break. We’ve seen what happened with the WIiU. How that didn’t work. So for us we’re very excited as it seems everyone is talking about PS4 and what it can do. Everybody seems to want one. It’s probably going to be the most significant console launch in history.”
Cale thinks it may not be all plain sailing for the two big console manufacturers though. “They’ve [Sony] done a great job so far, but we’re in a different world. It’s coming out during a recession and that’s not happened before,” he warned.
System 3 has two PlayStation 4 launch games planned in the form of Putty Squad and Pinball Arcade and, as a multiplatform publisher and developer, will obviously be hoping that both consoles sell extremely well.
Putty Squad, one of System 3's two PS4 launch titles
The PS4 launches in the U.K. on November 29 and the U.S. on November 15, 2013. At this point, Sony probably won’t be too worried considering pre-orders of the PS4 have gone through the roof. Will early adopters embrace the games, however, and buy the software during these tough economic times with core games retailing at approximately £50? And will the PS4 still be selling like hot cakes this time next year?