Sony pushes back half of its planned live-service games

Half of Sony's intended output for live-service games are being delayed, while the other six are still meant to release in the next few years.

Sony's planned output of live-service games has hit a stumbling block, as six of those intended 12 titles have been pushed back. During its recent earnings call, president Hiroki Totoki explained the unannounced titles were being delayed due to quality concerns and ensuring they live up to PlayStation's first-party standards. 

"[Of] the 12 titles, six titles will be released by FY25 – that’s our current plan. [As for] the remaining six titles, we are still working on that," said Totoki. "It’s not like we stick to certain titles, but game quality should be the most important [thing].”

Last year, Sony made clear the company wanted in on the revenue of live-service titles like Destiny 2 (whose developer, Bungie, it now owns) and Fortnite. Since then, multiplayer spinoffs for Naughty Dog's The Last of Us and Guerrilla Games' Horizon franchises have been confirmed to be in development.

In the case of Naughty Dog, said spinoff was revealed to be quietly shelved this past October. Earlier in the year, it was reported that the game (currently known as Factions) was suffering from a lack of clear vision and general quality. 

2023 has been an eventful year for games, and several live-service offerings have been shut down throughout the year. Some were only just recently released (like Omega Strikers), while others such as Marvel's Avengers have been around for a handful of years. 

Even Destiny 2 has been said to suffer from reduced player engagement since the release of its February expansion Lightfall, which in turn led to Bungie's layoffs last week. Its upcoming extraction shooter Marathon is said to be pushed to 2025, while Destiny 2's next expansion, The Final Shape, will launch in June 2024.

Whether ongoing service games will continue to have a future, some publishers like WB Games believe it can still be a reliable revenue model for years to come.

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