As discussed in the upcoming podcast, Activision head Bobby Kotick has recently let loose some very personal complaints about third-party development on the Playstation 3 in an interview with the New York Times, and has mentioned the possibility of ending all future production for the company if the situation doesn’t improve. While the context of the comments appears too casual to be taken as an active business decision, the severity of his prose does give credence to his concerns, and having the world’s largest third-party game developer behind you makes each word spoken to be taken with at least marginal seriousness.
Kotick is quoted as saying, “I’m getting concerned about Sony; the PlayStation 3 is losing a bit of momentum and they don’t make it easy for me to support the platform. It’s expensive to develop for the console, and the Wii and the Xbox are just selling better. Games generate a better return on invested capital on the Xbox than on the PlayStation. They have to cut the price, because if they don’t, the attach rates are likely to slow, he continues. If we are being realistic, we might have to stop supporting Sony…When we look at 2010 and 2011, we might want to consider if we support the console – and the PSP too.”
It’s difficult to see how deep Sony will take the comments to heart, especially with such specific recommendations. There hasn’t been a time in gaming history where a developer has so actively spoken out and threatened to remove game catalogs from a major hardware manufacturer, so it’s even more difficult to gauge where the relationship will go from here. More updates, as and if they come, can be found here on the Elder-Geek newsfeed.