Monday, October 29, 2007

Tech culture: Sony said 2007 was their year ... ROTFL

Blast from the past ...

Any gamer knew Sony had to admit it ... the Nintendo Wii and Xbox 360 fanboys had already declared it ... and now, the makers of the Playstation 3 have said it: The lag in sales of the PS3 are due to its high price and the lack of games offered exclusively for the new system.

The Story

FINALLY! As a reformed early t3ch adopter, I bought the Playstation opening weekend ... bought the Playstation Portable opening day and bought the Playstation 2 only after playing Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto 3. I had high hopes for the PS3 (I own a 360) and planned on getting one. Yet, the machine's slide made me reconsider buying a PS3.

PS3 fanboys are quick to throw up how awesome the PS3 is, how the Blu-Ray is so winning the high-definition war, how the PS3 blows the 360 completely out of the water, and how the PS3 will win the console war, just as the PS2 whipped the Xbox into submission. However, any die-hard gamer will admit that two things played into the PS2's success: backwards compatibility and exclusive content. Like I stated earlier, I owned a PS1, and several games, including Grand Theft Auto 3, GTA Vice City, were on the PS2 at least a year before the games appeared on the Xbox. Yes, the Xbox had Halo 1 and 2 and much better graphics than the PS2, but the Xbox didn't have the ability to play old PS1 games, and didn't have GTA. Those factors doomed the Xbox, even after the exclusive clause for the games on other systems was lifted.

Fast forward to 2005. Microsoft released the Xbox 2, called the Xbox 360 and immediately ran into problems. Yet, Microsoft fought and worked through their problems, released some killer games and now sits on top of the next-gen console war. Nintendo and Sony wanted a year and released their consoles. The Wii, by Nintendo, was welcomed and for at least 6 months has been one of the most difficult systems to find. The PS3? Late to the party (it was scheduled to be released alongside the 360 in 2005) and without any real heavy hitting games, plus two outrageous price tags ($499 for a 20gb model, $599 for a 60gb model) really made gamers take a 'wait and see' approach. The console's price was due to the use of a Blu-Ray player, which can store over 40gbs of information on discs.

Sony was convinced people would pay for the PS3 - but they failed to miss one point - exclusive games.

With the yearlong delay, Sony got off to a horrible start. They also discontinued the 20gb model, making the $599 model the only PS3 available. And to add fuel to the PS3's demise, Sony is releasing the newer PS3s without hardware software emulation (this device allows gamers with PS1 and PS2 games to play the games on a PS3) and opting for softwre emulation, reducing the number of playable PS1/PS2 games to 1/3rd of the original PS3's 100 percent success rate.

During Sony's delay, the 360 continued to dominate the empty field, and signed several deals with publishers, getting exclusives before Sony even came to the table. And with the graphics for both the 360 and PS3 appearing to be the same, gamers are hard pressed to find a reason to fork over $600 for a console.

Sony's missteps are just helping the 360 and Wii win the next-generation console war. If Sony can't land exclusives in the near future, the PS3 will be as big a bust as ex-Sooner Brian Bosworth's NFL career ...

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