The God of War and Twisted Metal creator thinks that the $60 game model is broken, and won't last much longer.
It's not just Angry Birds developer, Rovio Mobile, that foresees dark times ahead for console gaming, Eat Sleep Play boss David Jaffe thinks that outlook is pretty bleak as well. Jaffe believes that we're coming to the end of console gaming, and that while there will be a PlayStation 4, there won't be a PlayStation 5.
Jaffe felt that pre-owned sales and piracy were two of the biggest threats to the industry, because they were both taking revenue away from the publishers and developers. He suggested a PS3 game that sold 300,000 copies might sell 850,000 were it not for pre-owned sales. He said that that was not a model that was sustainable forever, and that it was would only be a few more years before the industry started to shy away from trying to make blockbuster games, and instead turned smaller, cheaper alternatives that they didn't require such huge levels of investment.
Jaffe thought that the retail business model, where a game costs $60 or so, was broken for the majority of games, especially when it came to value for money. He said that the game that contained hundreds of hours of gameplay was just as much of a problem as the one that contained just a handful of hours. He felt that there would always be a market for the really big games, like Gears of War and Uncharted, but he was less clear on what people would be playing them on. He said that it might be a streaming service like OnLive or Gaikai that filled that role, or a digital platform like Steam, but he was convinced that after the next console generation, the industry would move on to something else.
The problem here is that Jaffe is saying a lot of different things, which don't go together quite as well he seems to think. He's very likely correct that $60 games won't be around forever, but it doesn't automatically follow that a new business model will kill off consoles. It's not dissimilar to the situation with PC gaming, which has apparently been on its deathbed for years, and yet somehow keeps surviving, adapting and evolving.