The gaming industry is changing, we don’t know if it is for the better or worse, but change is coming. We are seeing the rise of digital content distribution.
It would take some time before it completely takes over physical games but digital content is now a major player in the gaming industry. Some companies are even starting to tap into a different kind of distribution channel for video games, streaming.
It is too early for such a method but Sony and PS Now are taking the first step to bring us a Netflix-esque streaming service but for video games.
PlayStation Now is available on PlayStation 3, PC, and built into some Bravia models. The service has seen moderate success and it is only changing the way Sony distributes content, it also affecting the meaning of the term “exclusive,” especially now when PlayStation 4 games are set to arrive on PS NOW.
The term is getting a beating for a long time now. The first hit was when “console exclusives” came along and that Microsoft introduced some called Xbox Play Anywhere Program.
Nothing is really exclusive anymore and now that we are able to play PS4 games on PC, what does that mean? The term exclusive isn’t really relevant anymore, thanks to PlayStation Now and Xbox Play Anywhere program. It seems both Sony and Microsoft are trying to target the PC market in their own ways.
But is PS Now for Sony is the best way to target and entice PC gamers? From a console gamer’s perspective, I do not want PS4 games going over to PC; be it via streaming or whatever. This essentially leaves the term “exclusive” less potent for me.
On the other hand, as a PC it is hard to consider Sony’s efforts enough to make me interested in its games. The service is expensive, no doubt, and on top of that streaming still needs at least a decade to be where digital distribution is today.
The main attraction for any console is its exclusives and experimenting with that aspect is risky for any company (just ask Microsoft).
Slowly but steadily we are losing the meaning of “exclusive” and it is not hard to guess that in the future, the term will become completly irrelevant for the gaming industry.