MAG & SOCOM: Most Requested Sony Exclusives
When Sony decided to close down Zipper Interactive last year, the gaming industry lost more than just a longtime developer of PlayStation exclusives. The late Zipper Interactive left behind 2 rather large voids within the shooter genre. As of now, Zipper’s two staple franchises are the most requested video games of all-time on the PlayStation Blog.Share website.
SOCOM fans have worked hard the past couple of years leveraging support for their PlayStation Blog.Share poll. It has received 15,331 total votes, with over 5,100 comments from fans expressing their love for the franchise. The “SOCOM II HD” poll emerged in 2010 between the launches of Confrontation and SOCOM 4, and was a direct result of major revamps the franchise has seen since 2005 with SOCOM 3. To modern day gamers, the name SOCOM carries a negative stigma, or is viewed as a subpar franchise. The longtime fans have fought hard trying to put an end to the identity crisis the franchise has faced, and decided that a “SOCOM II HD” might be the best approach to a simple solution. It quickly became the most requested video game on the entire PlayStation.Blog.Share website. There is another poll that exists for a “SOCOM I HD” as well, which contains over 3,000 votes.
This SOCOM achievement has officially been dethroned by another fanbase birthed by Zipper Interactive. MAG is a massive online respawn-based shooter better know for offering 256 player matches on a console. It established its own cult following, and quickly sold over a million copies. The hardcore nature of SOCOM was infused into a tactical respawn shooter, and the community that followed it were just as loyal and active as its predecessor. In fact, at one time the game was actually called SOCOM: MAG in the early stages of development. They were originally meant to be one game, but Zipper later split the project into two different IPs. The MAG community started a PlayStation.Blog.Share poll last September in hopes of getting Sony’s attention. To date, they have received an astonishing 23,603 total votes with 307 comments. (I am shocked there are not more comments like the SOCOM poll has) If this poll is legit, it has now officially become the most requested video game under PlayStation’s umbrella.
SOCOM & MAG combined have catered to hardcore, niche communities for years. In SOCOM’s case, for over a decade. They may not be as well-known as some other monster shooters out there, but they did a great job of offering some of the most competitive online stages in PlayStation’s lineup of games. The MAG community is currently driving down a road very familiar to SOCOM fans. Much like the community here at TRS, they have been “fighting the good fight” to see that their beloved franchise has a future. Zipper Interactive’s closing has truly left some large voids within the PlayStation community, and the fanbases of those games have rallied some incredible support to show their passion for wanting the franchises to continue.
The obvious question here is if these PlayStation.Blog.Share polls have any influence on Sony. PlayStation is quick to label a poll request as “full-filled” when they honor consumer suggestions, but neither the SOCOM or MAG polls have received any official acknowledgement. Both fanbases (SOCOM & MAG) are concerned about the future of their franchises, and have zero certainty that they will return for next gen. Sony has in their hands at the moment, two exclusive franchises that cater to some of the most hardcore online shooter fans within PlayStation’s demographic. They own the rights to two IPs that could easily be strong competitors to COD, Battlefield, HALO, and Counter Strike if developed & advertised properly. What does Sony have in store for all of the bastard children of Zipper Interactive?
MAG & SOCOM have some of PlayStation’s most vocal consumers, and some of the most active participants with social media. Both have their own fansites, active forums, and YouTube followings. The more these fans are left in the dark, the more aggressive and vocal they will become to be acknowledged. I don’t forsee any movements within their communities slowing down anytime soon, and all eyes are on the PS4 waiting for announcements.
What will Sony do to fill the voids that Zipper Interactive left behind? Will they recognize the top two most requested games on their website? Do they have plans to continue both franchises on the PS4?
Congrats to the MAG community for achieving an amazing response with their poll. I see major gaming media outlets writing stories about petitions that receive thousands of votes on polls for various things, but I have yet to see any entity highlight the recent accomplishments of the fans left in the wake of Zipper’s closing. If the MAG & SOCOM fans ever decided to unite as one big army, it would be a tactical shooter marvel when it comes to PR for PlayStation. Both fanbases have already left their marks on PlayStation’s website, and both are currently blazing a social media trail to strengthen their causes. If Sony sees the value of these two fanbases, we hope they offer some hope in the future.
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