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Sony Is Alienating Smaller Dev Teams Over Big-Budget Games

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Big-budget games for the PlayStation platform have been a huge success for Sony over the years. Consisting of mega hit franchises like The Last of Us, Uncharted, God Of War, and recently, Ghost Of Tsuhima. All of which come from Sony-owned game studios that are part of the overarching PlayStation Studios.

Sony’s big-budget PlayStation games have been so successful, it seems, that it’s led the company to alienate some of the smaller groups within its ranks. A new report from Bloomberg today details the unrest and dissention among some of the smaller development teams. All caused by Sony’s obsession with these larger than life titles.

Games like The Last of Us, which received critical acclaim, a sequel, and now an HBO Max show that is currently in development, is reportedly getting a remake for the PS5. The remake is said to have initially been helmed by Visual Arts Service Group. One of Sony’s smaller dev teams. Work on the remake had also apparently already begun.

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But the project was then handed off to Naughty Dog, the studio behind the franchise’s creation. This led to a majority of the members of the initial team leaving the company.

Sony’s obsession with big-budget PlayStation games is leading to high turnover

According to the report, the main issue is turnover. Sony has reportedly been so focused on these big games that smaller teams aren’t getting recognition.

A sequel to the PS4’s post-apocalyptic zombie title, Days Gone, was turned down. Days Gone was developed by another one of Sony’s in-house studios called Sony Bend, based out of Oregon. While Days Gone did make profits and has been loved by fans, it didn’t result in the sort of success that Sony was likely hoping for.

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So Days Gone 2 was never approved. Instead, much of the studio was split into working on two projects under Naughty Dog. One of those being a new Uncharted title. That team however has now been moved off the project per its own request, and is now working on a new franchise.

Smaller teams want recognition and independence

The big thing here is independence and recognition. Smaller dev teams at some of Sony’s internal studios want the chance to create something successful like some of the company’s other big blockbusters.

Though it sounds like Sony is more focused on maintaining the big franchises that it already has in place. Sony has reportedly refused to give some of these teams a budget to help their projects succeed. Or allow them build new studios under the PlayStation umbrella.

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