Why Would I Buy A PS5 Now If Its Best Games Are Coming Out On PS4?

Why Would I Buy A PS5 Now If Its Best Games Are Coming Out On PS4?
Illustration: Sony / Kotaku

I was going to buy a PS5. As someone who’s primarily been a PC games player, with Nintendo handhelds on the side, picking up a console at its launch is something I’ve never done. I drift in later, when availability isn’t an issue, and there’s already a pile of games to plunder. But I was ready to get myself a PS5.

The main motivation was the games. I want to play Spider-Man: Miles Morales so very, very much. Spider-Man was amazing, obviously, and Miles Morales is my favourite character in superhero comics. Then a sequel to one of my favourite games ever, Horizon: Zero Dawn, sealed the deal. As much as the expense would be tough to justify, I intended to fork out for a PS5 as close to launch as pre-ordering opportunities would allow, so I could immediately enjoy two games I felt could be presumed worth paying for.

Living in England, I’d booked a pre-order space on a UK site a couple of months back, that was meant to put me in line to pre-pay for one as soon as possible. It was as I was frantically trying to find out why this hadn’t worked, and how the offending site was already sold out, that I discovered how fortunate I’ve been. Because Miles Morales and Horizon: Forbidden West are coming out for the PS4 I already own.

It is the most extraordinary decision. Not least after Sony spent so much of the last six months insisting they had no intentions to do any such thing. As GI.biz reported back in May, PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan made it clear: “We believe that when you go to all the trouble of creating a next-gen console, that it should include features and benefits that the previous generation does not include. And that, in our view, people should make games that can make the most of those features.” Um.

I’ve no intention to buy a PS5 in 2020! The stress of trying to, of being on a 24-hour vigil for tweeted links to picosecond-long pre-order availabilities, all gone! The frustration of discovering that Europe isn’t getting them for a week after they’re released in the thriving metropolises of New Zealand, it matters not a jot. Because I already own a console that plays the games I was so excited about, so now I’ll buy them for that.

I’ll likely buy a PS5. Probably some time late in 2021, when all those launch issues are ironed out, but ahead of the second Christmas rush. There will already be rumours of a PS5 SlimPro, but I’ll ignore them and get the lumpy version people will laugh at in five years time. And I won’t mind a bit, because until then apparently Sony’s planning to release everything I care about on the PS4.


  • I considered waiting but I didn’t want to get caught out in the rush.

    I’m quite fascinated by the theory that the comeback success of PS3 drove the early success of the PS4 so I’ve long predicted that if true, the PS5 was going to hit the ground running and sell out periodically.
    With the big shopping holidays so close and the high interest titles on the horizon, I figured it was better to get the console ASAP so I’m not caught in the frenzy at every turn, the games and graphic boosts aren’t going to mean much if you don’t have the console to play them on.

    I wasn’t expecting preorders to close as quickly as they did though and watching how fast it spread around the world was crazy to watch.

    • I think the article is stating however that by the time Sony releases anything they’re interested in, there won’t BE a rush for PS5 as it’ll be out for a while.

      I doubt we will see the Wii levels of interest in the PS5. It is still very much a gamer’s gaming machine as opposed to something your parents/ non gaming friends will see over Christmas and say ‘I’d like one of those’ which very much happened back then.

      I’m in the same boat as John for both consoles now. Not going to wait for a slim (history says that ain’t coming til 2023) but wait for the initial issues to be known and then grab one sometime in 2021. The fact that I don’t have a 4K TV also makes this much easier.

      • It’s a bit of a sour article because it doesn’t quite frame the question very well, and you can tell there’s a bit too much salt.
        Eg: weird flex on New Zealand, bro. Let’s not ignore NZ’s sharing with the US release, and Oceaniac trade is a pretty different beastie to Europe. That should be pretty well understood by anyone who lives there, so we’re really just seeing a bit of a casual gripe.

        The article asks, ‘why would you buy a PS5 now to play PS4 games?’
        Well, I mean… that’s a question with several really fucking obvious answers: because the games are going to look and run better, and the machine won’t sound like you’re running a leaf-blower in your living room.

        It’s… not really a question that should have to be asked. It implies that exclusives are the only reason to buy an upgrade, which is nonsense.
        The better question is why wouldn’t you, if you can afford it?

        The author’s pointed to launch shortages/preorders being sold out, not wanting to get too caught up in it, and not caring about the games that ARE actual exclusives, but it’s not as if there’s no immediately obvious reasons to get one, such that the question has to be asked.

        This seems like a bit of a pushback against a perceived social pressure to get on board the FOMO train. We’re probably going to see a fair bit of that, especially as launch grows closer and people who don’t care, or have good reasons to wait, get exposed to more and more enthusiasm they don’t share.

        Good fun, all part of the vibrant world of video games. 🙂 I know I roll my eyes whenever there’s wall-to-wall smash bros/MOBA/whatever coverage I don’t care about.

        • Re: Leafblower, I put two cork/cardboard rails under my ps4, hasn’t made much of a peep since/doesn’t overheat 🙂

          Also I recently put a samsung SSSD in it, why the Pro didn’t come with SSD to begin with sucks, but that drive makes it the PS4 Pro Pro really! Runs so much faster.

          As for PS5 it’s definitely a 2021 purchase, considering but only if you consider PS5 only titles, which I do.

        • Yeah the NZ dis is a little weird, amazing country full of amazing people, even their Cops style show Police 107 is so incredibly low key.

          But for me it boils down to
          – Was well under what I was comfortable paying
          – Can sell my old console to offset the price a bit (though will probably just give it to a family member who doesn’t have the extra cash to spend on one)
          – Strange enough but it’ll actually fit my tv cabinet better than the pro
          – Had a feeling these pre-orders were going to jump the gun so checked all the sites after the presentation, EB jumped first so pre-ordered straight away then commented on Kotaku that they had gone live (though my comment got stuck in moderation, and still is…) if they went live all at the same time with notice I’m sure I would have ended up missing it.
          – It’s backwards compatible so it can also be just thought of as a very good upgrade (and recent games have begun to struggle a bit on them lately).
          – And to be honest I’m not against a little bit of retail therapy for something new and shiny, will be a very exciting day when it arrives (hopefully with no delivery delays though who am I kidding)

      • I don’t think the PS5 will see Wii levels of interest, the Wii was in a league of its own and I doubt we will see a console with such a broad market appeal again in our lifetimes.
        (Fingers crosses for a holodeck!!)
        Still the interest is still pretty crazy, with preorders closing within hours around the world and those that remained having DDoS protections activating through sheer traffic.

        I know exactly what Johns saying, I was just replying on why I decided not to wait.
        There’s every chance that by the time the games he wants arrive he will be able to snap up a PS5 but I decided that in preparation for the short and mid term shortages that I would to grab one as soon as a could (and even then I might still miss out)
        Given the expected shipment delays, manufacturing numbers, shopping holidays and staggering interest without big titles, I think I made the right decision should their still be high demand once the games and boost updates begin rolling out in the new year.

  • I’m legitimately disappointed that Horizon 2 is being released for both systems. I was really hoping for it to be a game that really took advantage of all the new bells and whistles the new hardware is capable of, not just in terms of graphics. There’s no way that developing it in tandem for the PS4 hasn’t held it back.

    I’m sure it’ll still be good, and obviously its availability to a wider audience is a great thing, but I was keen for something a bit more revolutionary and I don’t see how we’re gonna get that now.

    • I dunno, scalability is a thing… Rockstar took pretty damn good advantage of scaling in Red Dead Redemption 2 between console models in their performance to quality modes, etc.

      And I also have a lot of trust in Guerilla because of how jaw dropping Zero Dawn was on release.

  • 1. Waiting for the black version of the console.
    2. Waiting for GoW Ragnarok.
    3. Waiting for the price to calm the f**k down.
    4. Oh, and need to finish all currently owned games on PS4.

  • I find this to be a fairly good example of what seems o be the double standards when it comes to the Sony vs Microsoft conversation.
    Everyone is talking value proposition of jumping on board now or waiting etc. with nary a blink of an eye for Sony explicitly breaking promises. Microsoft pull this $hit & they lose 2 million sales from outraged internetters and it’s seen as a public relations disaster.

    NOTE: Own both current gen consoles so not vested and happy enough to be shouted down but I’ve always thought Microsoft cop a bit of a raw deal.

    As for me, I’m Sexbox’g first as I’m still running first gen Xbox so bigger step-up than from Pro to 5

  • microsoft gonna kill this gen. games on pc? check, games on high priced console? check. games on cheap console? check. sony… yeah we match your expensive one and we failed at matching your cheap one. but i have…. something?

    parents are going to by the series s.

    • I don’t know if that’s 100% true re: MS killing next gen (and this from someone who plans on going Series X first, then PS5 as secondary late 2021)

      Sony’s lead is stupidly big and those coming from Ps4 (in all polls) have shown that their primary choice is to go straight for PS5.

      I DO think the that the series S is a much better idea than the PS5 digital, there’s a definitive difference between the two, and it should appeal greatly to people as a secondary console to PS5 owners, non-gamer parents who don’t care about 4K and people who just want a cheaper next gen console.

    • Parents (by and large) are going to buy whatever the hell their kids want and Sony is still riding their PS4 success on that front.

    • I get alot of kids will get a series s from parents who just pick one, but I imagine the older kids will be asking for a specific brand, and as for adults the S doesnt seem like a next gen console. Doesnt do 4k, wont have any exclusives and while ps5 porting some if its titles to ps4 too hurts them on that front xbox says they wont have ANY for like 3 years.

      I LOVE game pass, and fully enjoy it on a PC, but they have shot themselves as far as hardware sales because every person I know who owns a pc doesnt see any reason to buy an xbox anymore. I bought a ps4 and a xbone last time, but since gamepass the xbox doesnt get a look in… They do get my subscription though

  • Gotta agree with Transient to some extent. There are traces of sodium chloride in this piece. It’s certainly lacks balance – where’s the pepper?
    Many reasons to get a PS5 on launch: Several new releases (cross gen) will leave their PS4 counterparts in the dust. Ubisoft have confirmed AC Valhalla will be 4K at a 60fps on xbox (no reson to believe that won’t be the case on PS5 – the two machines have very similar performance benchmarks). We’ve been waiting for this buttery smoothness for years, not to mention the lightning fast load times. Why put off that sweet experience any longer? This will likely be the case with Watchdogs Legion as well.
    Demon’s Souls has already been mentioned and it IS an ace – I don’t care what card table you’re sitting at.
    The preparation Sony have gone through here compared to their engineering prep on the PS4 (Mark Cerny has spoken about this – and the field testing) is night and day. You can expect the thing to purr quietly as it serenely performs it’s complex operations.
    You get to wink at people who didn’t press their FOMO buttons quick enough. We call these folks casuals 😉

    • I think the big thing is.. You’re not missing out on any CONTENT with waiting if the games are coming out on current gen.

      It is prettier, it is faster, absolutely (and this from someone who is always a day 1 adopter) but it’s not exclusive to next gen..

      Demon’s Souls obviously not included as yep, if you are a Souls fan, awesome for day 1. I suck at Souls games and tip my hat to those who have the ability to do it.

        • Wait – I assumed that R & C was a launch title but it says it will be released within the PS5’s “launch window” whatever that is. Does that still count?

  • Im sure as hell waiting, Ive got a backlog of games that arent going away anytime soon on even consoles from the PS3/Wii/Wiiu era.
    No way am i dropping down the coin required to gain early access for a console with no games, especially at the price the next gen want you to pay for in the middle of a god-damn recession.
    Ill be playing the waiting game A LOT more in this new generation.

  • I was originally planning on waiting, but my brother told me he pre-ordered one already as an early christmas present so hell yeah!

  • the 3 people I know personally who told me they where waiting all preordered one when FOMO hit…. I am also one of those people. TBF I’m an “essential worker” so the ressession hasn’t hit me very hard and between the extra work and the cancelled holiday has made me hungry for retail therapy…. which is why I also ordered a 3080…. my wallet needs a doctor now

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