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Saturday, April 10, 2021

Sony Says the Obvious: MLB Closes Xbox Game Pass ‘The Show 21’ Deal

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One of the strangest stories of the year so far is that Xbox managed to secure a once-exclusive franchise to Sony, MLB The Show 21, as a Game Pass release on day one. And now Sony has confirmed how it happened, although the answer was obvious, it was MLB’s call.

Speaking to Inverse, a Sony representative said the following about the move:

“As part of this year’s game’s goal, MLB has decided to bring the franchise to more baseball players and fans. This decision provides a unique opportunity to make MLB The Show the premier gaming brand. baseball video. “

MLB The Show is indeed “the” triple-A baseball game, which is why it has always been a little odd that it was exclusive to Sony. So I’m not shocked that MLB has reviewed Madden and FIFA and want to open it up to more platforms. But the Xbox Game Pass deal, possibly a big check to MLB, is a bit of a stick in the eyes of Sony, whose lead developer San Diego Studios created the game.

The MLB that made the Game Pass deal has now pushed Sony into the awkward position of charging $ 70 for the PS5 version of the game they’ve developed while their rival gets it for free on Game Pass.

I’m extremely curious as to what’s going on behind the scenes here, and if Sony will continue to be motivated to task San Diego Studios to do The Show if the series is no longer just exclusive to PlayStation, but actively used to help. to market their competitor through MLB. Maybe MLB just doesn’t really understand the dynamics at play here, but it’s a weird and unique situation and it will continue to be weird if a Sony studio does The Show, Sony produces it on PlayStation, and MLB produces. on Xbox. I mean, maybe it can work, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Sony started to be suspicious of all this business, despite their claims about the decision to strengthen The Show as “the leading brand for gaming.” baseball ”.

This is not a situation that is likely to recur so often. It’s hard to think of too many other big third party licenses like MLB that are exclusive to one console or the other. It’s not like Santa Monica Studios is going to make a deal with Xbox for God of War 2 or something like that. This is not how it works. But what happened with The Show here is a downside for Sony, compared to what it was before when the franchise was exclusive to PS for 15 years. We’ll see what happens now that the dynamics have changed.

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