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The inFamous games deserve more love from Sony

The inFamous games are an important part of PlayStation history, but the series is in limbo and playing older entries isn't exactly easy.

inFamous games PS5: An image of Cole from inFamous holding a PS5 game.

There’s a lot of conversation around PS5 and Xbox exclusives, especially after the recent Xbox Podcast with Phil Spencer and the gang. But when it comes to truly outstanding exclusives, the inFamous games still shine as amazing examples. Yet, the franchise has remained silent since 2015, and playing the first two entries isn’t easy outside of owning a PS3 in 2024.

Discovering new PS5 games is easy these days – as well as loads of new first and third-party releases, there’s an extensive PS Plus games list and monthly drops of free PS Plus games to dig into as well. But back in 2009, I had to make sure that my pocket money went a long way. Copies of inFamous were always on display in my local supermarket, on the end of the entertainment aisle in a standee for discounted games. Cole McGrath’s visage wielding electricity was enough to get me interested, and after saving up for it, the rest was history.

Both of the initial inFamous games showcase all the things Sucker Punch Productions would further innovate on with Ghost of Tsushima many years later. Impeccable visuals for time, amazing sound design, whip-smart writing, and characters to become infatuated with – it’s all there. While inFamous is dark and dour on the surface, Sucker Punch injects it with a beating heart that echos the pulp of its core influences – DC Comics.

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Taking inspiration from stories like Batman: No Man’s Land, it manages to blend self-serious moments with comic book chaos. All this can be applied to its even better sequel, inFamous 2, which still stands as the best game in the series. The franchise’s success continued with inFamous: Second Son on PlayStation 4, which runs superbly on PS5 through backwards compatibility.

With core PlayStation exclusives like Marvel’s Spider-Man, Uncharted, and The Last of Us games getting some TLC from Sony, it feels odd that a pillar of the PS3 generation hasn’t been revitalized yet. The inFamous franchise is an essential part of Sony’s legacy over the last decade. Currently, the only way to play the inFamous games aside from owning a PS3 is through PS cloud streaming. It just isn’t a satisfying way to play games, even with a great internet connection.

Bringing the earlier games to PS5 isn’t straightforward, I know that. Debate over the feasibility of PS3 emulation rages on, and that’s why we’re still missing out on other games like Metal Gear Solid 4 on current day hardware. I’m very curious to see how Konami handles that issue, and if it will have a ripple effect on other studios in the future. Hopefully, that ripple reaches Sucker Punch.

The studio has been under the banner of PlayStation Studios since 2011, and its involvement with actual hardware is notable. The studio worked deeply with Sony during the development of the PlayStation 4, offering notes on the DualShock 4 and the PS4’s power capability. Plenty of studios have given its two cents on improving Sony hardware in the past, but playing Second Son emphasizes how tailor-made the experience is.

Whether the studio still has this level of input is unclear, but therein exists an opportunity for the inFamous franchise to live on. However, the future for existing PlayStation franchises is already looking bleak, considering recent comments to roll back Sony’s focus on this kind of IP.

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A decade has nearly passed since inFamous Second Son was released, and it seems like it will be the last we’ll ever hear from the franchise. I’m still clinging on to hope that it changes, and giving the older games some love is the first step Sucker Punch and Sony need to take.