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The Week in Games
Sony raises the PS5 price. But at what cost?
It’s hard to believe we’re nearly two years into this new console generation. A bold new era of SSDs! And ray-traced reflections! It’s been a bit of a bumpy road, but thankfully the PS5 and Xbox are finally becoming easier to get hold of and all the major consoles have enjoyed big sales since their respective launches. So how has Sony chosen to celebrate this success? With a price drop!
No wait. A price rise!
Yep, as you’re no doubt aware, Sony bosses have decided to increase the cost of the PS5 by £30/€50 in the UK and Europe. At a time when many people face the frankly terrifying scenario of having to choose between heating their homes and eating.
Sure, costs have risen universally and PlayStation as a business is affected just like all the rest - and why should video games be exempt when everything else is going up? But this move in particular seems especially short-sighted. And the timing simply couldn’t be worse.
Indeed, it’s not actually the price rise itself that stings the most. In the grand scheme of things, £30 isn’t all that much, and £390/£480 for the Digital/Disc editions still represents good value for what you get. But it’s the perceived penny-pinching from a company with cash reserves in the billions that leaves such a sour taste in the mouth when so many are struggling.
It doesn’t help that this isn’t the first time recently that Sony has brought back unflattering memories of the early PS3 days, back when then-boss Ken Kutaragi suggested that if consumers couldn’t afford a PS3 they should “work more hours to buy one”.
Sony were quick to introduce a new £70 price-tag on its first-party PS5 games at a time when Microsoft were launching them day-one on Game Pass. And the bizarrely convoluted new PlayStation Plus service was hardly well received when it launched recently, despite offering an increasingly impressive library of older games.
Sony’s suits have made the decision to squeeze just a little bit more cash out of us. But at what cost? It’ll be interesting to see how quickly consumers forget about the their attempt to maintain record profits at a time when the world feels like it’s collapsing around our feet. And whether the short-term gain to Sony’s bank balance is worth the potential long-term damage to its already fragile image.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Is Sony well within its rights to increase prices in line with everything else? Or is it a step too far for a company taking its success for granted? To share your thoughts simply reply to this email directly, or catch me over on Twitter.
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I hope you enjoy the rest of the newsletter!
Take care
  • The Video Game Storytelling Summit
On September 8th four influential game writers will be hosting an online event to discuss storytelling, game and character narrative, gameplay, and more at the Video Game Storytelling Summit.
This is a free one-day online event, and it’s open to the first 200 people that sign up. Find out more and book your spot here.
  • Ninty Fresh Issue 07
If you missed out on the latest issue Ninty Fresh magazine during its Kickstarter campaign, it’s now available to buy online. Issue 07 celebrates 30 years of the Kirby franchise, alongside plenty of modern and retro Nintendo goodness.
This week sees the highly anticipated and controversial Last of Us remake hit PS5. Digital Foundry has called it “as complete a remake as you could hope for”.
Sam Barlow’s Immortality also launched this week to universal acclaim. If you’re a fan of its predecessors Her Story and Telling Lies, it looks like you’re in for another treat.
As for next week… Splatoon 3!
(PS4, PS5, Xbox, PC) – August 30
(Xbox, PC, iOS, Android) – August 30
(PS4, PS5) – August 30
(PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch, PC) – August 30
(PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch, PC) – August 30
(Xbox, Switch, PC) – September 1
(PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch, PC) – September 2
(PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch, PC) – September 2
(PS4, PS5, Switch, PC) – September 2
(PS5) – September 2
(PS5, Xbox Series X/S) – September 6
(PS5, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, PC) – September 6
(PS4, PS5) – September 6
(PC) – September 8
(PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PC) – September 8
(PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch, PC) – September 9
(Switch) – September 9
A randomly selected game each week! Any and all games are eligible for selection regardless of age, platform, popularity, or otherwise.
This week, the honour goes to…
Halo: Combat Evolved (2001)
Originally set for release on Apple’s Mac platform, Microsoft instead courted Bungie across to Xbox with the hopes of securing a high quality exclusive for its debut console.
The plan worked magnificently, with the game’s remarkable gunplay and peerless enemy AI resulting in one of the best, most enjoyable, and most important launch titles in history.
By Keith Stuart - The Guardian
The bestselling computer made home gaming accessible for millions as it launched the industry toward the mainstream.
By Christian Donlan - Eurogamer
A fond look back at the beautiful purity of the Game Boy.
By Chris Scullion - VGC
VGC celebrates the 30th anniversary of Mario Kart with a look at every game and spin-off.
By Various Staff - Mafia Official Site
A look back at 20 years of the Mafia series with developers who have worked on the games since the very start.
By Tom Regan - The Guardian
This summer, Street Fighter 6 was revealed with a striking new look. Its developers explain how they’re trying to make a beat ‘em up that everyone can play.
More for your inbox!
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(The Sample and Refind are part of a cross-promotion. Any clicks/sign-ups directly help The Week in Games to grow)
Nara: Facing Fire
Glowing Glade Studio - Campaign ends September 2nd
Old School Gamer Magazine
Ryan Burger - Campaign ends September 14th
Filmmakers Without Cameras: The Trilogy
Eryk Sawicki - Campaign ends September 14th
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…and that’s it for this week!
I hope you enjoyed this issue of The Week in Games! I’d be delighted if you would consider forwarding this email to anybody you think may like it, by sharing this link on social media, or simply telling people about it!
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Thanks again, see you next week!
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The Week in Games
The Week in Games @jeffsayhi

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