When Sony launches the PlayStation 5 later this year, the games it releases along with it will look a bit different on boot-up. Today, Sony has announced the creation of PlayStation Studios, a new brand that will unite all its first-party titles—both from Sony-owned studios and from contracted developers—under a unified identity.
As reported by our sister site GamesIndustry.biz, the PlayStation Studios brand will be ready in time for the PlayStation 5's release and will also apply to PlayStation 4 games, but it won't accompany the launches of The Last of Us Part 2, Ghost of Tsushima, or Horizon Zero Dawn's PC port. Subsequent releases will bear the PlayStation Studios name, with the following opening video (or a variation on it) coming before each game.
In the reel, you can see glimpses of the protagonists from a selection of Sony-published series, including Uncharted and The Last of Us (Naughty Dog), Horizon Zero Dawn (Guerrilla Games), Ratchet & Clank (Insomniac Games), Little Big Planet (Media Molecule), and God of War (Santa Monica Studio).
Sony Interactive Entertainment's Eric Lempel, senior VP and head of global marketing, tells GamesIndustry.biz that the animated opening, which is quite reminiscent of Marvel Studios' cross-franchise branding for its cinematic universe, could change to accommodate other Sony-published series or to show a franchise's evolution. "The cinematic you've seen is the one that has multiple games in it," says Lempel. "But over time, as we introduce well established franchises, we can tailor that opening a bit to possibly show the franchise over the years, new characters that have come into play... There's a lot we can do that we're really excited about."
"We've never had any problem getting people to play these games. They're usually critically acclaimed, award-winning franchises that are games of the year," says Lempel of the decision to change the branding, "but for the average consumer it's not always clear what games come directly from our Worldwide Studios."
The move to unite the output of its various first-party studios under a new, console-aligned branding is also similar to Microsoft's decision to abandon the Microsoft Studios branding in favor of Xbox Game Studios in 2019. Since then, Microsoft has even begun to retroactively apply Xbox Game Studios branding to select older releases, such as The Master Chief Collection.
Hopefully, we'll see the first games to officially bear the PlayStation Studios branding soon. We're inching ever-closer to what would have been E3 2020, and Sony has yet to show the PlayStation 5 hardware or discuss its launch line up in great detail.