Do Launch Games Really Matter?

Do Launch Games Really Matter?

By now, we’ve all heard the news – Halo is delayed and will not release alongside the Xbox Series X. Following the announcement were many articles about why it’s damaging for the brand and what it means for Microsoft going forward. I’m here to say – no one really cares.

No one buys a console solely on the games released during a console’s launch. We buy them for the future. For the games we know are right around the corner. Neither the Xbox One nor PlayStation 4 had launch games worth writing home about. But we bought them anyway based on trailers and demos shown at trade shows like E3. We knew an investment now would pay dividends later, and a weak launch lineup was a small price to pay.

We also live in an age where consoles can improve on the previous and current generation games. For example, my desire for a PlayStation 5 has less to do with launch titles and more with the improvements the system will make for PS4 games. Ghosts of Tsushima, The Last of Us Part II, and Spider-man are games I’ve decided not to play until the next-generation. Even with the Series X, the game I look forward to playing the most is one I currently play today – Destiny 2.

But these aren’t the only current-gen games coming to new consoles. Remedy just announced the release of Control: Ultimate Edition, and Rockstar is bringing Grand Theft Auto 5, a seven-year-old game, to PlayStation 5. And I’m sure there are more “enhanced” versions of older games coming too. Not to mention the library on Game Pass that will receive the upgrade treatment. Cyberpunk 2077, one of the most anticipating games this year, will drop for both Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5.

I understand that Halo was going to be “The” game for the Series X. Not having it available at launch sucks, but it wasn’t ready for the spotlight. Yet that isn’t going to stop people from buying Microsoft’s latest device. People know what they want to buy. If you were going to buy a PlayStation 5, you’ve been patiently waiting for the release date and price. And there wasn’t shit Microsoft was going to say or do to get you to change your mind. And if you want an Xbox, it didn’t matter if Halo was there or not, you were going to buy the machine anyway. We make a big deal out of these announcements because neither company has given us what we truly want – the console’s price.

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