I have a bit of an issue with Sony. I can’t even truly identify exactly what that issue is, to be honest. I just don’t like them. I will admit, they have some pretty good products from time to time. And if I’m ever rolling in more money than I can count, I might buy some of them.
For a very short time in my life, I was an electronics salesman at Sear’s. I never had a whole lot of luck in the TV department, but then not many people did at that time (it was when HD was popping on the scene, but there were no built in decoders, and no HD ready TV’s for the normal middle class). That meant I kept to car stereos, DVD players, phones, stereo components, and VCR’s. I typically shoo’d people away from Sony, no matter what it was they were looking to buy.
Here’s a quick list of the issues I have with them:
- They are either stupid or insane.
- They have obviously sold their collective soul to some evil power.
I told you it was quick.
So why bring this up now? Well, Summer 2008 is supposed to be a huge release time for new games coming out. With the console wars over (face it, they never really started, more on that later), each platform is gearing up for large events through Q3 2008 to keep sales up.
So we should be seeing huge launches from Sony to really get the PS3 into the swing of things, since its technically the new kid on the block, with his daddy’s gun and something to prove. Well, yes and no. The only really huge launch it has is GTA4, and it’s sharing that one with Microsoft anyway. To top it off, people are saying that the game crashes (violently) when played on the PS3 60GB.
Instead of actually using the GTA4 launch to boost sales (sort of screwed that one up anyway, when they decided to let got of exclusive rights to the franchise . . . just like Final Fantasy. UPDATE: turns out the Xbox 360 is outselling the PS3 anyway 2:1 with GTA4 releases), they are instead trying to hype up their exclusive titles. This sounds like a good plan, till you see what it is they are releasing.
Metal Gear Online: It’s Metal Gear! And it’s online! Awesome, right? Well, no, cause no one can get one and it plays like Call of Duty 4 anyway.
SOCOM-Confrontation: It’s SOCOM! And it’s online too! Actually, it’s ONLY online; there is no single player mode. It features highly detailed strategic shooter action . . . just like CoD4! And, a new, highly sophisticated voice system that allows players to mask their voice, and be heard by teammates. But be careful about talking too much; enemies can hear you if you are close by! Like in Halo 2.
Metal Gear Solid 4 has turned into vaporware, so I won’t start with that.
Little Big Planet: Somehow a Wii game has made it to the PS3, and it’s looking to be huge! Accordingly, Sony has delayed it’s release till sometime in Q4.
Only one person I know has bought a PS3, and he has admitted it was so he could play BluRay (it shouldn’t be surprising that the PS3 is one of the more advanced BluRay player). Everyone hates the Sixaxis (though it was funny to watch Sony be caught in a bold faced lie) and the Dualshock 3 is being released (for $60 more dollars).
If I had to sum up Sony (and Sony Computer Entertainment specifically), it would be simply “out of touch”. They really delivered with the original PlayStation; it’s flat out iconic. The PS2 . . . eh, it was pretty good (the games really saved it). After that, however, it was like they suddenly thought they were infallable.
Microsoft brings out online gaming on Live! . . . Sony states that online gaming has no future for their consumer base.
Consumers love the Xbox’s hard drive storage system . . . Sony says it’s a fad and is not interested in further development.
Consumers LOVE the PSP, so long as it’s hacked to actually be useful . . . Sony releases new firmware that will either lock down your PSP or brick it if you’ve already hacked it.
Sony realizes it was totally wrong with online gaming . . . and develops games that can ONLY be played online.
Sony sees Nintendo coming out with motion sensing controls for the Wii . . . and decides that it should ALSO have motion sensing capabilities.
It’s so bad there, even their head of SCE America, Phil Harrison, left to work for Atari. It’s like they have this big Staples button (you know, the one you hit and it says “That was easy!”) in their top levels. Only this one says “Screw it; we’re Sony!”.
*The console wars were invented by press who wanted to simply stir up ratings or page views. There is no industry standard for gaming platform, so there was no war to decide what that standard would be. And let’s face it; we all knew Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo were going to release their platforms no matter what. It’s not like Microsoft will suddenly say “Oh well, that Wii is just too much. Let’s stop all production on video gaming.”