The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima driving software sales at Sony

Sony experienced a strong quarter thanks in part to the performance of titles like The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima.

Sony experienced a strong quarter thanks in part to the performance of titles like The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima

As noted in the company's fiscal report for the three months ended June 30, 2020, consolidated sales rose by 2 percent to 1.96 trillion yen ($18.5 billion), while profits increased by 53 percent to 186.94 billion yen ($1.76 billion). 

That upswing was mirrored within the company's Games & Network Services segment, which houses its video game operations. Sales in the division rose by 32 percent year-on-year to 606.1 billion yen ($5.7 billion), while operating income increased to 124 billion yen ($1.17 billion) from 73.8 billion yen ($739 million).

Sony praised that "strong performance," and singled out "huge hit" The Last of Us Part II along with Ghost of Tsushima for individual praise, with those titles selling over 4 million and 2.4 million copies respectively. 

The company also noted the "positive impact of stay-at-home demand" resulting from the spread of COVID-19, and highlighted the contribution of third-party free-to-play titles. 

It revealed the number of PS Plus subscribers rose to approximately 45 million as of June 30, and seemed satisfied with the PlayStation Network's ability to cope under the extra pressure caused by the coronavirus pandemic. 

Looking ahead towards the launch of the PlayStation 5, the company said hardware and software production remains on track despite some COVID-19 constraints. 

"Regarding the launch of PlayStation 5, although factors such as constraints due to employees working from home and restrictions on international travel remain, necessary measures are being taken and preparations are underway with the launch of the console scheduled for the 2020 holiday season," reads the fiscal report. 

"At this time, no major problems have arisen in the game software development pipeline for Sony’s own first-party studios or its partners’ studios."

Looking forward, Sony expects the segment to deliver sales of 522.4 billion yen ($4.9 billion) and operating income of 240 billion yen ($2.2 billion) by the end of the current fiscal year on March 31, 2021. 

That forecast would represent a 26 percent increase in full-year sales, and "essentially flat" operating income - the latter of which would be caused by a "significant increase in expenses related to the introduction of PS5."

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