Like the other thread, I'll be posting PS3 news here!
Sony's John Koller Speaks Out About PS3 Slim Rumors and Leak-Based News
Posted by Jake Gaskill - Tuesday, June 09, 2009 3:18 PM
As everyone (especially those who stupidly bet money on whether Internet rumors are true or not) is keenly aware, Sony didn’t unveil the PlayStation 3 Slim at E3 2009 last week. At this point, the only “evidence” that a PS3 Slim is in the works is a series of “leaked” photos from a manufacturing plant that supposedly show the slimmed down console being packaged.
Now, while a PS3 price drop is certainly a worthy concern for any prospective PS3 owner, the possibility of an entirely redesigned console seems like an even more influential factor in terms of preventing someone from taking the $400 plunge now as opposed to later. That is, of course, unless you ask Sony’s director of hardware marketing John Koller, as [censored] Technica recently found out. While on the topic of the recent PS3 Slim rumors, Koller said:
"If [the coverage] focuses more on leaks or what may or may not happen then yes, there is a certain amount of frustration…Who's going to get to the future first? I think that's a more interesting story than 'I found some packaging in China that may or may not...' You know, personally, I don't see that as a story…I'd love to live in a world with fewer leaks and more meat."
[censored] Technica’s Ben Kuchera notes that during this portion of the interview, Koller was noticeably more standoffish and defensive, suggesting (not so subtly) that there might be something to the rumors after all. Of course, after having its PSP Go bubble burst prior to its big E3 reveal, it’s easy to understand Sony’s ire towards leaked hardware information. But to suggest that such leaks don’t constitute valid story material is preposterous, especially in the case of one of gaming’s major hardware players.
When it comes to super secret projects like a PS3 Slim, and leaks are the only source of info, don’t those leaks represent valid story material?
Re: PS3 News
Prototype PS3 Install Bugged, Fix Is Kind Of Ridiculous
Posted by Brian Leahy - Wednesday, June 10, 2009 10:11 AM
The PlayStation 3 version of Prototype has a nasty little bug that may affect some users as they try to install the game. The PS3 may claim it does not have enough free space on the hard drive even if it does, but it can be solved by a goofy workaround.
By changing the amount of free space on your hard drive by at least 700MB, the game will complete its mandatory install and you can begin slicing people open on the streets of NYC. Want a suggestion on how to do this? Delete or download a game demo.
Activision has stated that a patch will be released over PSN shortly. Unfortunately, this workaround is necessary until then if you experience the bug because the installation is mandatory. PS3 owners might recall the same bug with Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction.
In other news, I conducted the optional install of Prototype on the Xbox 360 last night and was playing it so much that I forgot to eat dinner. True story.
Re: PS3 & PSP News
"Just About" Every PSP Game Released After October 1 Will Be Downloadable For PSP Go
Posted by Jake Gaskill - Wednesday, June 10, 2009 3:27 PM
Even prior to Sony's official unveiling of its next big portable device, the PSP Go, speculations abounded regarding what the company's plans were for bringing UMD-released games to a UMD-less device. Well, things are a little bit clearer today.
Sony social media manager Jeff Rubenstein told Destructoid that "just about" every PSP game released on UMD after October 1 (the day the PSP Go goes on sale) will also be available for download on the PlayStation Network. Rubenstein went on to say that third party titles will need the approval of their publishers before they will be available for download.
This is of course great news for people who have never owned a PSP and, as such, don't own a single UMD game, and plan on investing in a PSP Go. However, the download service still doesn't help current PSP owners thinking about eventually picking one up. That is of course unless the vast majority of them don't mind carrying around two PSPs all the time.
Last week, I posted about Sony apparently considering a UMD transfer service to solve this issue, but that service has yet to be detailed in any significant way. If it ends up working (and its free), then Sony will gain an all new level of respect and adoration from gamers everywhere. If it doesn't come together, PSP owners are going to have a tough decision to make come October 1.
Re: PS3 & PSP News
Sony: We Don't Regret Blu-Ray
Posted by Stephen Johnson - Wednesday, June 10, 2009 3:20 PM
In a recent interview with The Guardian, Sony president Kaz Hirai was asked whether the inclusion of a Blu Ray player in the PlayStation 3 was a mistake. Here's how Kaz answered:
"Purely from a gaming standpoint there was no other choice for us. Why? The capacity of the disc. Last year's Metal Gear Solid 4 was pushing 50GB as it was. If it was on DVD it would have been a 6 disc set... So from a gaming standpoint there was really no choice if you wanted a high definition gaming experience. Kojima-san has been pushing the boundaries already. And then there is the motion picture issue. The PS3 installed base certainly went a long way to making the movie studios side with Blu-ray rather then HD-DVD or supporting both."
It's safe to say that Hirai does not regret his company's decision to include a Blu-Ray player in their game system, and as a recent convert to the PlayStation 3, I have to agree with him -- that Blu-Ray player is amazing. But since we're talking about things that Sony should regret versus things they shouldn't regret, and since I'm in a particularly ornery, post E3 mood, please click the cut and check out my list of things about the Sony should regret about the PlayStation 3:
Lack of an HDMI cable: This isn't the biggest fault of the system, but the lack of an HDMI cable represents the first time in my entire life I was ever disappointed by a game system before I plugged it in.
Backward Compatibility: I don't really care that much, because I rarely play older games, but how are you going to take features away in later versions of your console? You're supposed to add features.
Wonky Media Server: I bought my PS3 to stream media, and this thing is just unstable. Sony should regret that they never made this work right.
The Price: You gotta figure they already regret that painful $600 launch price point and the bad feelings it engendered.
Lack of games: Sure, now there's some exclusives that everyone wants to play, but it's been, what, over two years since launch.
Loss of exclusives: Tekken, Final Fantasy, GTA (at least timed exclusives.) Ouch, man.
Yes, I could make just as long a list for the 360... feel free to fill it in the comment section.
Re: PS3 & PSP News
PSP Firmware Getting Updated, Only Adding Tech Fixes
Posted by Patrick Klepek - Thursday, June 11, 2009 2:05 PM
Sony loves their firmware updates, which is why PSP users will have the opportunity to download the version 5.51, the latest update to the PSP hardware "soon," according to the PlayStation Blog.
The firmware isn't adding any new features, though. Sony's only promising some improvements to "system software stability during use of some features." Which features? Like other firmware updates, it'll be up to users to figure that out.
I can't wait to forget about this update, be forced to upgrade when I buy a new game and cry in a corner, as my PSP tells me I need to wait until it's fully charged to update. (That's mostly sarcasm.)
Re: PS3 & PSP News
Sony CEO Kaz Hirai Says Core Gamers Should Be Served Before The Mainstream
Posted by Raymond Padilla - Thursday, June 11, 2009 12:50 PM
With the success of the Nintendo Wii, numerous gaming-industry pundits have focused on what console companies are doing to garner the mainstream audience. In a sense, it's understandable; out of the gate, the Wii has reached a broad audience in a way that (arguably) no console ever has. While the shortsighted reaction would be to mimic the Wii in every way possible and as soon as possible, Sony believes in a more gradual approach -- an approach that has worked for the company twice before. It will go after the mainstream audience with products like Buzz, SingStar, and its unnamed motion controller. However, Sony feels that it's important to start with the core audience and build out. In a recent interview with The Guardian, Sony Computer Entertainment CEO Kaz Hirai said:
"We have always started with the core audience and then expanded. A console always needs a solid core of games that appeal to gamers. Look at God of War. We launched that in the seventh year of the Playstation 2 and a lot of people wondered why we did. It's because we always wanted to keep the support of the core gaming audience.
That's not to say we're not doing anything to expand the demographics. Singstar and Buzz are obvious examples. But we need to do this in a controlled way. If you go mainstream too quickly and don't support the core gaming audience then you lack the pillar to support your platform. Without this pillar you end up with a fickle audience that might be big but will probably move on."
A lot of what Hirai is saying makes complete sense, but this generation is quite different from the previous two and the market has changed considerably. The most obvious point is that the PlayStation 3 does not enjoy the same market position as the PlayStation and PlayStation 2. With that in mind, can Sony afford to use the same approach it did in the past? Or does it need to alter its gameplan drastically in order to catch up to Microsoft? (Let's be honest -- neither company is going to catch up to Nintendo.)
Hirai's words also made me think about Nintendo's longterm future. Numerous readers of TheFeed would say, to use Hirai's words, that Nintendo lacks the pillar to support its core-gaming audience. While it might not matter this generation, some have argued that the Wii has generated so much ill will with enthusiast gamers and it will bite Nintendo come next generation. Like Kaz said, it's possible that these gamers will "move on".
It's still early in the console game so it will be interesting to see how it all plays out. Microsoft and Sony still have numerous opportunities to succeed. While Nintendo's lead is substantial, it still has a lot of work to do in order to avoid a sharp sales drop off. Even though a lot of enthusiast gamers have turned their backs on Nintendo, the company has the ability -- much more so than the others -- to win back hearts with its classic franchises.
So look into your crystal [censored] and read your tarot cards. Do you think the approach Hirai spoke about will work? Or is this generation a completely different ballgame? How about Nintendo? Did it "go mainstream too quickly"? Will it haunt the company in the future? Share your thoughts!
Re: PS3 & PSP News
Valve Won't Develop On PS3 Again Until They Can Do It Right
Posted by Patrick Klepek - Friday, June 12, 2009 11:37 AM
Hey, at least Valve's honest. The company has never expressed much interest in developing for PlayStation 3 and been pretty clear about their reasons. When Electronic Arts ported The Orange Box, it bummed out Valve because it hasn't supported the platform since then. In Billy's interview with co-founder Gabe Newell, he said Valve won't be returning to the platform until they're confident they can do it right.
"We haven’t done a good job of taking care of our PS3 customers at all for the existing Orange Box customers, and that is very frustrating to me personally," admitted Newell. "Until we can do a better job than we have, I’m sort of hesitant to go back and screw them again. So, I want to make sure when we have customers on the PS3 they don’t end up in the sort of second class citizen that I feel that they’ve been by what we did originally with The Orange Box."
It sounds like Valve could embrace PlayStation 3 eventually, but for the time being, if you want to play their games and want to play them now, you need an Xbox 360 or PC.
Re: PS3 & PSP News
Sony President Jack Tretton Talks Press Leaks, Motion Control Compatibility
Posted by Stephen Johnson - Friday, June 12, 2009 8:56 AM
The video game industry is notorious for leaks and slip-ups of press material, and Sony's E3 2009 press event was no exception. The trailer for Last Guardian leaked weeks before E3; accurate leaks of the features of the PSP Go were out back in February, and even Sony's motion-sensing system was whispered about in the weeks leading up to the show.
“People don’t respect confidentiality in this industry,” Jack Tretton, president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment of America, told CNBC. “It’s tough enough to keep a secret within your own company, much less when you speak to third parties.”
“This is an industry that has trouble focusing on today,” he says “We want to constantly talk about tomorrow.… You have to prepare for people to know things in advance. The frustrating thing is they only know a part of the story and that opens up a lot of conjecture and misinformation that ultimately waters down the reality when you roll it out.”
Tretton and other heads of the game industry should be happy the game press is so keen to leak information -- it only happens because video game fans actually care what companies are doing, and are eager to lap up any scraps of information that can be presented to them. In other industries, people are rarely interested enough to even want information before it is announced. (Although, I've heard rumors that the Studor Company's new line of REDI-VENT temperature actuated flow reduction valves are going to schweeet.)
Tretton also implied the PS3 Motion Sensor will be available for a bunch of games.
“It’s a different experience that doesn’t lend itself to certain types of games. [But] I think our [motion] controller can be used with every game that’s on the system now — and every game we’re working on.”
Tretton also said that it was "absolutely conceivable" that existing PS3 games could be updated to incorporate the new technology. I'll believe that when I see it!
Re: PS3 & PSP News
Activision CEO Warns It 'Might Have To Stop Supporting Sony' -- Sony Responds
Posted by Patrick Klepek - Friday, June 19, 2009 10:03 AM
Shots have been fired, friends. Traditionally outspoken Activision CEO Bobby Kotick has told Times Online that unless Sony cuts the price of PlayStation 3, something Kotick has strongly advocated for in the past year, he'll consider dropping support for Sony's console. Strong words from the leader of the largest third-party publisher in the world.
“They [Sony] have to cut the price, because if they don't, the attach rates are likely to slow," Kotick told the newspaper. "If we are being realistic, we might have to stop supporting Sony. When we look at 2010 and 2011, we might want to consider if we support the console — and the PSP too.”
Both Sony Computer Entertainment America and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe have issued responses to Kotick's comments, though neither did much to challenge him.
"PlayStation has tremendous momentum coming out of E3, and we are seeing positive growth with more than 350 titles slated to hit across all our platforms, including many anticipated games from our publishing partners," said a SCEA representative in an e-mailed statement to me. "We enjoy healthy business relationships with and greatly value our publishing partners and are working closely with them to deliver the best entertainment experience."
VG247.com managed to eek a response out of their European branch. “We respect our third-parties’ opinions and their right to express those opinions but we will not be commenting on this story," said a SCEE representative.
You can bet there's going to be some phone calls between Sony and Activision today.
Re: PS3 & PSP News
If Activision Dropped PS3 Support This Year, Here's What PS3 Owners Couldn't Play
Posted by Patrick Klepek - Friday, June 19, 2009 12:55 PM
Activision is threatening to drop support for PlayStation 3 (and PSP, but let's focus on the big target here) if Sony doesn't drop the price of their hardware soon. As the world's largest third-party publisher, Activision wields power. If Activision made good on their threats, what would be the impact?
I combed through the company's upcoming release calendar for the rest of 2009 and produced a list of games PlayStation 3 owners wouldn't see if Activision drops support for the platform. Note: This has almost zero chance of happenning, as most of these games are nearly finished. It's merely a "what if?" scenario.
Let me know if there's anything missing, but if Activision drops support for PlayStation 3, here's the games that wouldn't be appearing on the machine in 2009:
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen -- June 23
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs -- June 30
Wolfenstein -- August 4
Guitar Hero 5 -- September 1
Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 -- September 8
Singularity -- TBA
Cabela's Outdoor Adventure -- September 22
Tony Hawk: Ride -- October
Bakugan -- October
Modern Warfare 2 -- November 10
Chaotic -- November
Guitar Hero: Van Halen -- Fall
Band Hero -- Fall
Cabela's Big Game Hunter 2009 -- TBA
Which game would you miss the most? Something tells me it's not Ice Age.