You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Redfall's PS5 Cancelation May Be Felt by PlayStation Fans For Years To Come

GameRant 2023/03/24 Matt Karoglou
© Provided by GameRant

While the gaming world was aware that Arkane's upcoming vampire-themed looter shooter Redfall was being released as an Xbox and PC exclusive, what was not known until just this week was that a potential PS5 port of the game was scrapped following the acquisition of Bethesda (Arkane's parent company) by Microsoft in 2020. Speaking with IGN, game director Harvey Smith revealed that there were plans for a PlayStation 5 release of Redfall that were abandoned per Microsoft's direction, somewhat contradicting the company's public stance on console exclusivity during the review process for the record-breaking potential acquisition of Activision-Blizzard.

Bethesda had previously made it apparent that Ghostwire Tokyo and Deathloop would be the last titles honored under the existing PlayStation exclusivity window after being acquired by Microsoft, but the company was less clear regarding whether any future Bethesda titles would continue to be cross-platform. Though the news of the PlayStation 5 version of Redfall existing and then getting canceled should not come as a surprise given both Sony and Microsoft's precedent of having console exclusives, the recent hands-on play-test of Redfall supports every indication that the title has potential to be a massive hit for Microsoft and Arkane that will receive continual support in the form of patches and content updates for years to come.

RELATED: Redfall Could Show What an Open-World Borderlands Game Could Look Like

Redfall Is Showing Potential For a Long Shelf-Life

Redfall represents a different design approach for Arkane compared to what many have come to expect from the studio. Many of Arkane's previous titles, such as Prey or the Dishonored series, fall under the category of first-person immersive sim. In contrast, Redfall is an open-world looter shooter that can be played solo or co-op and features many hallmarks of other looter-shooters and live service games: tiered loot, drop-in/drop-out co-op, and an always-online requirement (though Arkane has promised a future offline mode). Recent hands-on play tests of the game have yielded mostly positive reception, indicating that Redfall may be set up for years of success as a live-service title that could stablish a strong player base at launch and then maintain it.

If Redfall ends up having a successful launch (a strong possibility given that it is another day-1 GamePass title for Xbox), Bethesda and Arkane will likely continue to support the title for years to come via regular content updates and performance patches. And if Redfall remains an Xbox console exclusive, PlayStation owners will be missing out on what could potentially be the next big live-service game. In comparison, Deathloop (another Arkane title) was developed as a PS5 exclusive and then made its way to Xbox following the end of the exclusivity window. While Sony is focused on preventing Microsoft from obtaining exclusivity of the Call of Duty franchise, the loss of Redfall may also impact PlayStation for several years.

Redfall's Exclusivity Could Lead to a Major Loss for Xbox

In the intervening years since Microsoft acquired Bethesda and all of their subsidiaries (including Arkane Studios and Tango Gameworks) the games industry has been awash with news of strategic acquisitions, seemingly in an effort of the major console manufacturers to bolster their library of exclusives. One of the most significant of these acquisitions came in 2022 when Sony purchased Bungie. In the ongoing battle over console market supremacy and rights to exclusivity, the canceling of previously cross-platform releases like Redfall could have the potential backfiring effect for Microsoft in the form of them missing out on the eventual Destiny 3.

While competition is both necessary and healthy for the games industry, the battle over console exclusivity forces gamers to be more selective over their hardware of choice and ultimately results in a net loss for consumers. In a future where Redfall is a hit for Microsoft, the potential for the next Destiny title to be PlayStation exclusive becomes all the more real. Considering that Bungie has supported Destiny 2 for almost 6 years and 2 console generations, that is a non-trivial window of time for millions of gamers to possibly miss out on a hit live-service title due to exclusivity rights. There is also no telling whether other in-development Bethesda and Activision Blizzard games could have their PS5 versions canceled like Redfall, ensuring that this cancelation will be a topic of discussion for a long time.

Redfall launches on May 2 for PC and Xbox Series X/S.

MORE: Redfall Hands-On Preview: Arkane Takes a Stab at an Open World Shooter

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon