The story broke earlier this week that PES 2019, one of the two free games being offered to Playstation Plus subscribers in July 2019 was pulled from the lineup with no real warning. The football title was replaced with Quantic Dream’s Detroit: Become Human.
Gamers were incensed by the sudden change, pestering Sony and Konami over the decision. The word quickly came back that the decision was made by the parent division, Sony Interactive Entertainment, so press and gamers started digging.
In a statement given to Eurogamer, a representative of Konami has now said ‘This decision was made by SIE and so please make an inquiry to SIE.’ European PES brand manager Lennart Bobzin meanwhile said to Gamespot when the story broke: ‘I cannot really tell you what happened because I just found out today, in the morning when I opened my laptop. I can’t really explain.’
A second statement was issued through Eurogamer did in fact confirm that Sony wanted the game replaced in the monthly lineup, but no further explanation was offered. Sony Interactive Entertainment said:
We have decided to make a change to the PS Plus games lineup this month, and will be offering Detroit: Become Human Digital Deluxe Edition instead of Pro Evolution Soccer 2019. This was a decision we decided to make as a company, and we apologise for any inconvenience.
This has done little to quell the question that remains about why this change was made. Whether it’s internal strife or a beef between two corporations, we have no idea. It could be that SIE just wanted a different game in the rotation. Maybe a deal was reached with Quantic Dream behind closed doors, no way to know for sure unless SIE confirms otherwise.
The more likely explanation is that a recently inked marketing deal between Sony and EA played a hand in the change. The Japanese company recently signed an agreement with Electronic Arts to aid in promotion of FIFA 20, so there’s a distinct possibility that the promotion of a rival sports title conflicted with said deal.