The Waning Years of Sony’s Dominant Console

While focusing on mainstream AAA games might suggest otherwise, the current generation of consoles has tapped into the overwhelming majority of gamers’ hearts.

And if you’ve primarily been playing on the PS4, the selection has been pixel perfect paradise so long as you appreciate single player games.

We’ve gotten quality experiences like:

  • Spider-Man
  • God of war
  • Gran Turismo Sport
  • Detroit Become Human
  • The Last Guardian
  • Horizon Zero Dawn

The list of exclusives goes on and on.

It really makes you wonder, do we really need a PS5 right now?

And in 2019, how much longer will the PS4 keep on tickin’?

Read below for a dive into why the PS5 could launch in 2020-2021, with support for the PS4 continuing 2-3 years post launch

Not Like Last Time

Halo 4 proved to be a technical feat the on Xbox 360, but most games at the tail end of last gen showed a need for new consoles.

This generation has arguably been one of the best of all time, and a big reason why it continues to stay fresh is because it hasn’t been a parallel to last generation.

It’s been over 5 years since the release of the Xbox One and PS4 and we’ve still yet to hit the true ceiling of these consoles, especially the PS4.

In contrast, by the end of the Xbox 360 and PS3’s life we were regularly encountering games that truly struggled to play acceptably. Games like Halo 4 and The Last of Us easily passed as early next-gen games, but many others were stuttering and dipping in the FPS department.

The PS4 offers jaw dropping visuals with games like God of War, and we’re sure to see the bar set even higher with upcoming exclusives such as Ghosts of Tsushima and Death Stranding.

We may see next-gen graphics before the PS5 launches if you weren’t already enamored by the likes of Sony Santa Monica’s critical darling and Red Dead Redemption 2.

Ubisoft recently announced that Rainbow Six Siege has reached 45 million players.

Looking to upgrade your console experience?

Another huge differentiator from last generation is the existence of the Xbox One X and PS4 Pro.

These two mid-gen refresh models have helped keep things exciting and impressive for those in search of something fresh

There’s also a factor of balance – both the Xbox One and PS4 offer impressive feats not just in terms of visuals, but longevity as well.

Multiplayer experiences have largely shifted towards a GaaS model, something which has made titles like Rainbow Six Siege and Overwatch, initially released years ago, largely relevant today.

It could be argued that there are too many great games available to PS4 players. Who needs next-gen when most players have a meaty backlog of unfinished games?

How Long Will PS4 Be Around?

playstation console lifespans

No matter how good things currently are, there’s the thought of something new and bold looming in the back of millions of gamers’ minds.

By the time November 2019 rolls around it will have been 6 years that the PS4 has been on the market.

Sony surely doesn’t want to limit the sales momentum of the PS4, but it also can’t rest on the laurels of being the market leader for too long.

The thirst and subsequent hype for the PS5 is almost tangible, visible as an increasing topic of discussion on places like reddit and other video game forums.

The million dollar question is this – when will the PS5 launch?

It’s anybody’s guess, but going by the typical generational length and comments made by Sony Interactive Entertainment’s CEO, it will most likely release sometime around 2020-2021.

Launch dates of all PlayStation consoles in North America:

  • PlayStation launched on September 9, 1995
  • PlayStation 2 launched on October 26, 2000
  • PlayStation 3 launched on November 17, 2006
  • PlayStation 4 launched on November 15, 2013

As you can see, the average life span of a PlayStation console is 6 years, and by the end of 2019 we will have hit the magic number. It’s unlikely that Sony will push far past that point, what with next-gen Xbox conjecture from Phil Spencer and growing consumer interest.

This would mean that PS4 players could expect the console to last another 1.5 years give or take.

When will new games stop being released for the PS4?

If the start of this generation is anything to go by, cross-gen titles will most likely be released 2-3 years after the PS5 releases.

From there, next-gen will undoubtedly become the main focus of Sony. It’s even more apparent when you factor in the inevitable backwards compatibility of the PS5 and next-gen Xbox.

Still Worth Buying a PS4 in 2019?

Deciding whether or not to buy a PS4 Slim or PS4 Pro right now is ripe for paralysis by analysis.

Jumping into the ecosystem now means enjoying a wide variety of experiences, first party and otherwise, while also saving money on titles that have aged. Dozens of high profile games are available for $20 or less, and PlayStation regularly pushes deep discount Flash Sales.

On the other hand, dropping $200-$300 now is money that you won’t have when the PS5 rolls around in just a few short years.

Which is ultimately the right call?

Getting yourself a PS4 this late in the generation makes sense if you’re generally a patient gamer, prefer to save money, are interested by Sony’s first party games, and aren’t phased by cutting edge tech.

5 reasons why it’s still worth getting a PS4

  • Amazing first party games like The Last of Us, God of War, Spiderman, and Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Cheap entry point
  • Tons of compelling indies
  • Diverse selection of active multiplayer games like Destiny 2, Apex Legends, Overwatch, Fortnite, and Rainbow Six Siege
  • Many great games can be had for $20 or less

While it’s true that you won’t have the money to spend on the PS5, you’re still open to hundreds of hours of enjoyment up until that point. The first couple years of a generation are also pretty stale in most cases.

But if you’re been holding off up until now and aren’t planning to make a move soon, you might be better off waiting. The PS5 will most likely offer backwards compatibility, meaning every PS4 game will be playable on the new console.

5 reasons why you should wait for PS5

  • PS5 is only a few years away
  • Money spent now is money you won’t have for next-gen
  • Backwards compatibility will most likely be present next-gen
  • First party games like God of War, Spider-Man, Ghosts of Tsushima, and Death Stranding might look and play better on PS5
  • Better graphics, higher resolution, and better performance on PS5

Already have an Xbox One, Switch, or capable PC?

The decision becomes much easier. The PS5 will be here before you know it and the longer you wait to make a decision, the less sense it makes to buy a PS4.

The exciting prospect of backwards compatibility means that you’ll be able to enjoy the PS4’s amazing library no matter the choice you make. And the buzz is palpable as next-gen rumors start to kick up.

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