Microsoft has already confirmed that the Xbox One will launch later this year in November. Meanwhile Sony on the other hand has remained silent on when the PS4 will launch, saying only sometime this year. Could they pull off a “coup de grâce” of sorts and launch before the Xbox One in October though?
Practical reasons/theories for an October PS4 launch (i.e. other than just so it can be released before the Xbox One) include the following:
- Black Friday stock: The Playstation 4 is extremely likely to sell out on or just after launch. We’ve covered this before. If Sony launch October 29, then this will give them some time to restock units before Black Friday in the United States, which will take place on November 29. They don’t want to be sold out for that date (with everyone presumably buying the Xbox One instead).
- BF4 and AC4: Battlefield 4 and Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag both launch on 29 October and are much-anticipated games. If the PS4 launches before the Xbox One and in October, then the only way to play those games (next-gen) from their release on 29 October would be on the PS4. Something which should theoretically lead to higher sales.
- Best Buy rumor: There was also a very vague rumor about an internal Best Buy email stating an October 29 release date (we’re not giving any credence to the email, but including it for completeness).
Reasons for a November release date for the PS4 are also abundant and, in our opinion, outweigh those above:
- CoD: Ghosts: Sony has said that Call of Duty: Ghosts will be a launch title for the Playstation 4. With the game coming out on November 5, Sony would need to change its launch title line-up if it was going to release the PS4 in October.
- Watch Dogs: Like CoD: Ghosts, Watch Dogs is another PS4 launch title although it is expected to be released on November 19. Therefore it is unlikely the PS4 would be available before that date.
- DriveClub: This game (yet another launch title) was only 35% complete at E3 last month, according to the game’s developers Evolution Studios. An early PS4 release date would give them even less time to not only finish, but polish the game. We don’t think it’s enough time.
- Another rumor: Much like the Best Buy email rumor, there was also this one regarding a leaked “street date” listing for the PS4, from “a supplier of wholesale video game products in California.” Again, included for completeness only.
Games are, funnily enough, what games consoles are about, and if the Playstation 4 is released with a sub-standard launch line-up or even worse – crappy, unfinished games – it would be a less than ideal start for Sony. In fact if this happened we think the benefits of a release prior to the Xbox One would be outweighed.
What do you think? October, November or even December for the Playstation 4?