With a great slew of announcements from Sony’s pre-TGS press conference today, the launch date for the PS4 in Japan was revealed. Sony’s highly anticipated new console won’t launch in Sony’s native country until 2014; February 22 to be exact. This shouldn’t come as total surprise, Sony have been quiet about the Japanese market ever since they unveiled the PS4. This comes as a huge contrast between Sony’s history in launching their consoles first in Japan. This marks the first time a Playstation platform will make it’s debut in the West.
“The availability of content” is the main reason why Sony have opted out in shipping the PS4 in Japan this year. It seems Sony have calculated a shortage in supplies if the system were to be systemically released in Japan and other territories. Also, the current launch line-up for the PS4 is heavily Western and European based. There doesn’t seem to be enough compelling games out on launch for the Japanese market. Surely Killzone and Driveclub doesn’t cut it for the land of the rising sun.
The PS4 will launch with three versions. The stand alone console and controller for 39,980 yen ($401), with the camera for 43,980 yen ($441), and a special “First Limited Pack” which will come with a download code for knack and a one year guarantee on the console. Pricing for this version has yet to be revealed.
Another bit of news to hit the world of Playstation today is the ESRB’s weekly e-mail update, which leaked a PS Vita version of The Amazing Spider-Man. The leak includes ratings for 7 versions of the game, one of which is for the PS Vita; a version that hasn’t been available. Publishers pay money to the ESRB for ratings so its unlikely this is fake.
It seems Sony’s 3rd party initiative is paying off.