“I don’t see it as having much impact,” says CEO Strauss Zelnick.
It feels like backward compatibility has become more important to the industry and most who’re involved in it – from platform holders to consumers – than it has ever been in the past. Whether that’s because it’s an actual tangible improvement, or because it functions more as a marketing buzzword for platform holders, is something that a few people aren’t quite settled on. One person who falls in the second camp is Strauss Zelnick, CEO of Take-Two Interactive.
Speaking recently with GamesIndustry on the matter of backward compatibility, Zelnick said it isn’t something that will have a tangible impact on the industry. He conceded that if it were to have any effect, it would be a positive one, but ultimately, he sees it as being effectively not relevant.
“I don’t see it as having much impact,” said Zelnick. “But if it were to have an impact, it would be net positive as a marketing matter. As a practical matter, it really doesn’t matter. It’s not relevant.”
Both Sony and Microsoft have been focusing a great deal on the backward compatibility capabilities of their upcoming next gen systems. For Microsoft, that’s a continuation of their practices over the last couple of years, but Sony too are looking to leverage the PS5’s backward compatibility. It remains to be seen just how much it will impact potential consumers’ purchasing decisions.