© 2021 Sony Interactive Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved. Unlike an iPhone, a new PlayStation doesn’t arrive every year. The current-generation PlayStation 4 launched in 2013, and its half-step upgrade, the PS4 Pro, came onto the scene four years ago. The latest tweets from @PlayStationES. @AskPlayStation: Introducing PlayStation Customer Service via Twitter Tina Barnes Operations Program Manager, PlayStation Customer Service Date published: March 9, 2011 34 3 110. Follow Friday 2.0: The Ever Expanding PlayStation Universe Sid Shuman. Explore PlayStation Store from your console, smartphone or web browser and discover a treasure trove of games — from triple-A blockbusters to indie gems — as well as add-ons and season passes. With regular sales, promotions and extra savings for PlayStation Plus members, there's always one more adventure waiting.© Provided by TechRadar PS5 restock
Mid-Friday update: If you saw our our PS5 restock Twitter update, you know that the Sony console is sold out at Best Buy. Here's how to track PS5 at the next store.
Follow us for notifications on where to buy PS5 next – it has worked for others.
Playstation Twitter Comments
PS5 restock sold out at Best Buy. About 35% of my tweet replies are from people who got it! Shocking! 😮Follow & ♻️RT me + @techradar for instant PlayStation 5 tracking alerts 🚨 pic.twitter.com/S6fZmFGbDYFebruary 19, 2021
Tip 1 for this Best Buy PS5 restock if it comes back: don't refresh the page once it says 'Please wait' in a grayed out button. Eventually, it'll say Add to cart again with a yellow button, and you should immediate to go the checkout page.
Tip 2: Follow us on Twitter above to get notifications on where you get it next.
Tip 3: Tell us if you had success via Twitter. This helps people know what works and what doesn't.
Late Thursday update: We didn't see a PS5 restock on Thursday, however, we're tracking new stock that is rumored to launch tomorrow, Friday at Target and Best Buy. We have a tweet set up for the minute it lands, though the exact time for this PS5 restock isn't known.
🚨PS5 is out of stock at Sony Direct, but I have another tweet in draft ready to alert you when it comes back.Follow me + @techradar for instant PlayStation 5 tracking alerts 🚨 pic.twitter.com/qri2zUbvE3February 18, 2021
We're checking for PS5 inventory at every major US retailer, including Sony Direct, GameStop, Walmart, Target and Best Best. There are 12 different stores we're tracking so you can get the PS5 at its normal MSRP. Today, Thursday, may be your lucky day, and even though we don't have the exact time of of today's PlayStation 5 restock, our Twitter tracker usually goes out minute one.
Yesterday, Wednesday, was the first PS5 restock at Sony Direct. The site usually has new stock of both the Disc and Digital PS5 on weekdays Tuesdays through Fridays, although Tuesday is sometimes skipped (as it was this week), and now apparently we're seeing the same from Thursday.
Here's where else for can check for the PS5 besides Sony Direct:
- Sony Direct: PS5PS5 Digital Edition - waiting for Thursday stock (follow us on Twitter)
- Amazon: PS5PS5 Digital Edition – always check daily
- GameStop: PS5PS5 Digital Edition - was in stock earlier this week
- Walmart: PS5PS5 Digital Edition – always check daily
- Target: PS5 PS5 Digital Edition
- Best Buy: PS5 PS5 Digital Edition
- B&H Photo: PS5 PS5 Digital Edition
- Sam's Club: PS5 PS5 Digital Edition
- Newegg: PS5 PS5 Digital Edition
- Costco: PS5
- Adorama: PS5
- Antonline: PS5
GameStop is an important one because it sells PS5 bundles. That remains all those resellers trying to turn a profit have to sell easy-to-buy games at full price. That's a much harder resell opportunity for them – and a benefit to actual gamers.
Some ground rules for Sony Direct: Remember, whenever the PS5 restock in the US happens, it'll send you into a virtual queue and it's choosing people at random to buy the much-sought-after video game console. You're not guaranteed to get one.
Both the Disc and Digital PS5 versions were for sale at the MSRP of $499 and $399 respectively at the above links. Tax isn't included, so it may cost a bit more.
As we always warn, getting into the Sony Direct queue doesn't mean you'll find the console in stock. Most people will see 'more than an hour wait' from the estimated wait time. That's what the message reads for us. For others, they'll see a queue of just a few minutes.
Here are more rules, according to Sony:
- First, you will need an active PSN account in order to complete the purchase.
- Second, you will have 10 minutes to buy the PS5.
- Third, 'PS5 Consoles are now available but are not guaranteed even if you are in the queue,' according to Sony.a
Trust us, it's serious about buying the PS5 within ten minutes. Make sure you have all of your information ready to go to buy PS5.
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Some PlayStation fans are feeling angsty about the company’s strategy under Sony Interactive Entertainment boss Jim Ryan. And that is understandable. Many of the company’s most enthusiastic supporters just spent $500 or more on a PlayStation 5. And now those same fans are staring down the barrel of a generation of $70 games. With that kind of skin in the game, many consumers are justifiably concerned about getting their money’s worth. And that has turned into skepticism surrounding Ryan.
But what are PlayStation fans worried about specifically, and are those criticisms legitimate? Let’s try to understand.
Playstation Twitter Link
It’s important to start by recognizing Sony’s position in games. By many metrics, it is the industry leader. And while that is something that others might envy, it also has Sony in an inherently defensive position. Many already understands Microsoft’s weaknesses. Fans spent the entire last generation examining the mistakes. And that means it is less exciting to fixate on those blunders — especially when the company is so often going on the attack with major acquisitions and disruptive business models like Game Pass.
PlayStation’s weaknesses, however, are less obvious, and its strengths are well known. And that means when the company doubles down on those same strengths, it is easy for fans and industry observers to take the company’s achievements for granted. And that creates a lot of extra space for folks to speculate and imagine perceived areas where PlayStation underperforms.
That is what is happening now. But that doesn’t mean these concerns are only happening in the over-active imaginations of PlayStation fans. Sony is making conservative choices under Ryan, and that could have real consequences.
Sony is drifting away from smaller games
To be fair to Sony and Ryan, the company seems laser-focused on the games PlayStation fans are most excited about. These include sequels to popular PlayStation 4 franchises like God of War and Horizon: Zero Dawn. But the new wrinkle in the strategy is that Sony is emphasizing these massive blockbusters to the exclusion of almost everything else.
One example of this is PlayStation’s shrinking relationship with smaller indie games. At the start of the PlayStation 4, Sony embraced indies as a way to fill out the consoles release schedule while the company developed its own projects. Now, the publisher is less willing to associate itself $20 or $30 indie games.
The PlayStation website does list some notable indie games like Oddworld: Soulstorm, Bugsnax, and Maquette. And each of those launched on PS Plus. Sony still sees value in indie games when it comes to boosting the value of its subscription service. But this initiative is more limited than the first year of PS4 when Sony helped launch indie exclusives like Resogun, Guacamelee, Towerfall Ascension, Velocity 2X, Transistor, The Swapper, Sportsfriends, Hohokum and more.
This month, Resogun developer Housemarque is releasing roguelite shooter Returnal. But that game, which is $70, is also indicative of the company’s direction toward bigger games — even in the indie space.
PlayStation is also less likely to give indies their own showcases than its competition. It has shown indie games during States of Plays broadcasts in August and February. Games like the kung-fu action adventure Sifu and sci-fi action game Solar Ash showed up alongside projects from major publishers like Knockout City, Deathloop, Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade, and more.
But while companies like Nintendo and Microsoft livestreamed indie-exclusive showcases in the last few weeks, Sony relegated its smaller indie efforts to blog posts.
And there’s reason to believe that even the current level of indie interest out of PlayStation is temporary. In 2017, Ryan confirmed that the company stopped highlighting indies on PS4 because they grew less relevant as Sony had more of its own games to talk about.
“There was a time and a place, in the early stages of the life of PS4, to make statements [using indie games],” Ryan said in an interview with GamesIndustry.biz in 2017. “It was more about making a statement that we are serious about the indies, and that we are doing this and that with the indies … it was just good to talk about in 2013/2014. It’s less relevant now.”
Indie games rarely sell millions of copies, but they add variety and new experiences to a console library. Of course, those games will continue coming to PlayStation without direct support from Sony. And that’s a good thing, because the company also seems less interested in experimenting itself.
Sony recently disbanded Japan Studios. That is the team responsible for classics like Ape Escape and Gravity Rush. And while Ryan was still overseeing PlayStation in Europe, the company also closed Guerrilla Cambridge and Evolutions Studios.
For the players? Try ‘For the Blockbusters’
Skepticism of Ryan isn’t solely about his focus on the most profitable software. That is something every company does. But it is notable at Sony because the shift comes while Sony also seems less determined to deliver features that fans want.
To that point, Sony recently announced it is closing the digital stores for the PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation Vita. And Sony continues to forego investment into backward compatibility solutions.
Again, Sony is making these decisions to preserve profitability, but it’s also something that a company might decide to do “For the Players” even if it were losing money.
Now, “For the Players” was always just a PS4 marketing slogan, and we don’t have to fall into the trap of believing marketing. But you could almost buy into that throughout the life of the PS4. The company built the console that players were asking for when Microsoft wouldn’t. That made gamers more confident in PlayStation even when it didn’t have any major releases for the first two years of that consoles.
But the emphasis has shifted from the players to the games.
PlayStation’s new slogan is “Play Has No Limits,” and it’s easy to read into that as well. But the subtext this time is that Sony’s games are so prestigious and so important that there is no limit to what people will do to play them.
Ryan believes that Sony must make every PlayStation game an event. And part of that means not associating the PlayStation brand with smaller games that might diminish the public perception of the value of a PS5 release. But it also means that Sony doesn’t need to do things for the players because the players will be so hungry to do things to get PlayStation.
This safe strategy is still a risk
Sony is making bigger bets on fewer games. One of the reasons this makes sense is because Sony is one of the only companies in the world that has the money and skill to deliver on those bets. That makes this a conservative strategy in the short run, but it’s one that could go sideways on PlayStation and Ryan.
Sony should keep making massive games like The Last of Us and God of War. But by emphasizing them above all else, the company is foregoing a chance to come up with creative new ways to find its next big thing. And that next big thing is likely going to be necessary.
The game industry changes rapidly. Genres go in and out of style. And even something as massive and popular as God of War and The Last of Us could start to feel stale after the third or fourth entries. At that time, the company may have to turn to younger and fresher talent to try something new. That’s how it got God of War and The Last of Us in the first place.
But the problem is that Sony’s strategy could squeeze out that talent. A Bloomberg report last week detailed unrest among some PlayStation studios regarding the focus on the biggest blockbusters. I can confirm that I’ve heard similar tales about angst among senior developers at non-Naughty Dog studios.
If Sony isn’t careful and isn’t fostering the next generation of creativity, then it could find itself in a situation where its blockbuster well runs dry.
Jim Ryan needs to tell a better story
Again, it’s easy to imagine a dramatic stumble for Sony because it is riding so high. It’s still in a strong position. PlayStation does make some of the most beloved games, and the company has even started tying them together with a Marvel Studios-style logo animation.
Ryan clearly understands how important it is to tell a strong story as a brand. But the problem is that it’s hard to believe him when he attempts to sell that narrative. And that is really his role: to act as the chief storyteller for the brand.
Six years ago, former PlayStation boss Shawn Layden took a moment out of the company’s E3 presentation to talk about a cult rhythm action game Vib Ribbon. He explained that the game wasn’t a multimillion-copy seller, but it was worth it because it tried to give players new experiences. It was lip service to a game that Layden once worked on, but it was clear that he was actually proud of it. And it was part of a story that Sony was telling about taking chances on game.
I don’t think Sony ever cared about Vib Ribbon. But Layden knew that if he could convince us that he cared about the games, it would be easier to convince us that the games were worth caring about.
Ryan, meanwhile, is trying to convince us that the games are worth caring about because they’re $70, and that means they must be important.
Updated April 15 at 9 a.m. to clarify Sony’s current indie strategy.
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