Why the PS4 is Waiting Until February to Launch in Japan

A dearth of Japan-focused titles is why Sony is slowing the roll of the PlayStation 4 there until Feb. 22. In fact, western appetite for a next-generation console well outpaces that in Sony's home country, said company executives to Eurogamer.

"Perhaps you could say that a few western developers have been more aggresive in readying titles for the hardware," said Mark Cerny, the PS4's chief architect. Shuhei Yoshida, the head of Sony Worldwide Studios, backed him up, saying Japan was "a completely different picture of readiness" for new hardware compared to the west.

As a result, Japanese developers really didn't start climbing aboard the PS4 bandwagon until after it was announced in February, where western developers had been talking about plans for the next generation of consoles before anyone knew what their names were.

Indeed, Richard Eisenbeis' man-in-the-street polling of Tokyo Game Show-goers found eight of 32 randomly approached folks expressing no interest in either console (to be fair, Xbox has no certain release date in Japan and is definitely second-banana there.) Yoshida pointed out that Japan "is more portable-heavy" which also explains the relative apathy toward a new machine.

"Sony just wants to make sure that when PlayStation 4 launches in Japan, there is a good lineup of titles for Japan," Cerny told Eurogamer. Might this portend a special treat for Japan sometime in the winter—say The Last Guardian?

Sony explains why PS4 will launch in Japan after the West [Eurogamer]