If the PS5 has an incredible launch library, you may want to buy one as soon as it comes out. If it doesn’t, you can safely give it a pass until next year — at least. The only trouble is that the PS5 is approximately three months out, and we still don’t know which scenario to expect.
Recently, a Sony executive claimed that the PS5 would have “the best line-up that we’ve ever seen in the history of PlayStation,” which sounds promising. But we won’t be able to evaluate his statement until we get a comprehensive list of games launching alongside the PS5.
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Information comes from a GamesIndustry.biz article, in which journalist Christopher Dring interviewed Eric Lempel, senior vice president and head of global marketing at Sony Interactive Entertainment. The discussion was wide-ranging, and covered everything from the DualSense controller’s capabilities, to the challenges of marketing a new console during a pandemic. The most tantalizing bit of information came at the very end, however.
“The content that will be in the launch window and beyond is incredibly exciting,” Lempel said. “I would say that this is the best line-up that we’ve ever seen in the history of PlayStation, between our Worldwide Studios groups and our partners from all the different publishers around the world. We’ve revealed some of that content, and naturally there will be more to come, but the way that the developers can engage with this platform, and create these new experiences with known IP as well as unknown IP, is incredibly exciting.”
There are a few different discussions at play here, but the most salient is that the PS5 will have the “best” launch window line-up of any PlayStation console. While we can quibble about what exactly that means (launch-day specifically? Within a month of launch? Three months?), it’s still a bold claim, particularly since we still have very little idea of which games will accompany the PS5 at launch.
In terms of true PS5 exclusives at launch, we have Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Astro’s Playroom. The former is a standalone expansion, while the latter is preloaded into each PS5 to act as sort of a playable tech demo. Bugsnax, the colorful, oddball adventure/exploration game, should be out for both PS5 and PS4 at this time. Godfall, the loot-heavy action/RPG, is also an exclusive-ish title slated for the PS5’s launch window, but it will come out for PC as well.
Otherwise, the PS5 will have an assortment of third-party titles, including Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, NBA 2K21 and Outriders. Many current-gen games, such as Cyberpunk 2077 and Marvel’s Avengers, will also get PS5 versions, although it’s not clear whether these will come out the second the new console launches.
Compare and contrast to previous PlayStation launches, and it’s actually not hard to see why the PS5 may take the “best” crown. The PS1, PS2 and PS3 all had fairly tepid launch libraries, and the bulk of good games that launched alongside the PS4 came from third-party studios.
Still, it’s Lempel’s “more to come” comments that could spark further speculation. Does he mean that Sony will announce more launch titles between now and holiday 2020, or simply that the PS5’s library will build steadily during its launch window? Neither scenario is particularly unlikely, but one or two more killer Day One exclusives for the PS5 wouldn’t hurt.
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Marshall Honorof is a senior editor for Tom's Guide, overseeing the site's coverage of gaming hardware and software. He comes from a science writing background, having studied paleomammalogy, biological anthropology, and the history of science and technology. After hours, you can find him practicing taekwondo or doing deep dives on classic sci-fi.