Sony plans to focus on PlayStation Plus as well as the PlayStation 3's and PlayStation Vita's content libraries in holiday-season marketing, said John Koller, the company's vice president of marketing for consoles and handhelds, in an interview with GamesIndustry International.
The PlayStation 3 may lack heavy-hitting exclusives on the level of Halo 4 this year. But Koller touted the big picture, focusing on the console's existing library of top-tier games and the ones due out in 2013. "You're buying into a system that has not only a great holiday ahead of it," he said, "but also a great future ahead of it over the next few years" — a future including games such as Naughty Dog's The Last of Us and Quantic Dream's Beyond: Two Souls. "This isn't going to be a system that people come into this holiday and then feel like PlayStation abandoned them, and that's important for us," he added.
Koller also pointed out this fall's major PS Vita games, Assassin's Creed 3: Liberation and Call of Duty: Black Ops Declassified, and promised that Sony will continue to work with third-party publishers to keep quality titles coming to the "fledgling platform" next year.
A major part of Sony's content push on both PS3 and PS Vita is PlayStation Plus, which has seen a "significant rise" in subscriptions since E3, when its Instant Game Collection feature — an always-available set of free games — was announced. According to Koller, Sony is promoting Plus to developers as a "great way to bring your franchise or your brand to a whole new group of people.
"We really want to provide great content," he explained, "whether it's a game that launched a year ago or maybe some great catalog titles or games that just get people started on that particular platform." PlayStation Plus will continue to see "various integrations into our ecosystem," he added.
Another element of cross-platform PS3/Vita functionality is a dual-screen experience, which Sony has highlighted before. "There are some very nice tech integrations that are possible," said Koller, who added that "we certainly are looking at opportunities from a development standpoint." He didn't offer any specifics, but promised, "We'll be back to you on some of those ideas here at some point in the near future." A few fall 2012 titles support simultaneous cross-platform play, including Street Fighter X Tekken and PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, and LittleBigPlanet 2 offers specific cross-play DLC.
Koller reiterated that for the Vita, "It's a marathon, not a sprint." For now, he said, "We're focusing on content and value and providing the right types of games for the consumer, and I think we've got a good holiday in front of us."