There is a lot of attention being drawn to the big first party games this year. Games like Halo 5: Guardians, Bloodborne and The Order 1886 are going to be remembered for one reason or another but great third party games just keep spinning up from nowhere. Let’s talk about why I think 2015 is the year of the third party.
Firstly, for people who don’t understand what a first and third party game is, allow me to explain. A first party game is a title developed, usually with a little help from Microsoft or Sony respectively, for either console and they are not cross platform games. Halo and Bloodborne are good examples of this for the two big console companies. A third party game is a title developed for all gamers, no matter which system you are on the development studio makes the game without help from the console companies, for everyone to play. That’s a pretty basic explanation of it but it is all you will need to know for the purpose of this article.
Now that everyone is up to speed, I’d like to start by talking about a few notable first party games that have and will give the others a run for their money. Halo and Bloodborne are two games I have already brought up but really are going to be the biggest competition for any third party games out there. They offer some of the best experiences desperately trying to entice gamers to buy the console it is exclusively available on. The issue with first party games however, is that only half of the console population even has access to playing them. Companies have to make a big choice and get some serious compensation from either Microsoft or Sony if their games are to be first party to make up for the huge lack of numbers you would see without having the other systems player base.
On to why third party games have been so good this year. I firmly believe that it’s because the developers have finally mastered the new hardware in the PS4 and Xbox One and have been able to put aside the differences between the two consoles in favour of making excellent titles for both systems. It is far more profitable (usually) for developers to reach all systems with their game unless they are trying to gain a niche within a console class, vying for the love of either the Playstation or the Xbox die hard fans. But what we are left with is a stunning line-up of third party games, who are going to revel in the sales numbers because they decided to reach all markets. Some of these games include; Destiny: The Taken King, Rainbow Six: Siege, Fallout 4, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, Fifa 16 and Rise of the Tomb Raider.
The interesting thing about the third party games listed above is that a lot of them do indeed have exclusivity deals, just not in the way that we think of. These exclusivity deals range from getting DLC maps a month later, to a year later, to in some cases getting the whole game a year later than release. I’m personally not a huge fan of console exclusivity at all, but I understand the need for Microsoft and Sony to grab these deals because it is a business and if one of them doesn’t, you can bet that the other company will.
So there it is, you just have to compare the lists to see which really wins this year, and the answer to that is everyone, because third party games are available to everyone regardless of what system you have. This is the best possible outcome for gamers as while you may not get every game you wanted, there is still a huge amount of games available to your system.
What do you guys think to exclusivity? Does it ruin consoles or make them a more attractive place to play? Let us know in the comments below!