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Archive for January, 2006

Now Hiring: Tons of PS3 developers

Friday, January 20th, 2006

IGN has been perusing the job boards lately, and they’ve found postings for a bunch of PS3 games that are in development but not yet officially announced. Here’s the list so far.

FULL STORY:

  • Surreal is working on a project that uses Unreal Engine 3 and plays from both “first and third-person perspectives.”
  • High Moon is developing a first-person action/adventure game for PS3 and Xbox 360.
  • SEGA’s Secret Level is working on a high-profile, character-based game, whose franchise hasn’t been available to Western developers until now.
  • Starbreeze is working on an unannounced project for PS3 and 360.
  • Sucker Punch is looking for engine programmers for its “Top Secret Next-Gen” project, which will feature some online capabilities.

Whoa! If you need a job, now’s the time.

• Surreal, High Moon, Secret Level, Starbreeze and Sucker Punch stories from IGN

Virtua Fighter 5 might be PS3 exclusive

Friday, January 20th, 2006

Rumor has it that we’re on the cusp of an announcement about the next game in the Virtua Fighter series.

FULL STORY:

As Computer And Video Games reports:

You see, according to internet gossip, the Febuary issue of US mag EGM carries confirmation that the fighting game is heading to the Playstation 3, with speculation that it “might be exclusive.” A juicy report, although with no official announcment from Sega, Virtua Fighter 5 on PS3 is one to be filed in the rumour drawer for now.

We’ll watch out for it. Stay tuned.

• VIRTUA FIGHTER 5 PS3-BOUND? [CVG]

PS3 delay and development recap

Friday, January 20th, 2006

Big media gets into the PS3 again, this time with a Forbes.com story covering all the latest developments — and the many reasons why the PS3 will probably be delayed.

FULL STORY:

It’s a recap of stuff we’ve been reporting here in bits and pieces, so if you need a refresher course, this is it.

The outcome will be big for Sony: The size of the videogame industry is nearing $30 billion, and Microsoft and Nintendo are simultaneously trying to position their own consoles as digital hubs in living rooms across the world.

• Sony’s Hit Machine [Forbes]

Revolution Roundup: Launch before Thanksgiving

Friday, January 20th, 2006

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata revealed to the Japanese press yesterday that the Revolution will launch before Thanksgiving in North America.

FULL STORY:

Here’s what he has to say:

“We can’t disclose the Revolution’s release period yet, but we have no plans to miss out on the year-end sales battle. As for North America, we need to release it by Thanksgiving, or otherwise we won’t receive support from the retail industry. So the Revolution will be released prior to that period.”

Nintendo Revolution He also confirmed that a near-finished working model of the Revolution will be on display at E3 in May, and reiterated that the system will be very affordable compared to the other consoles. “The amount of money that people are willing to spend on videogames is getting less every year. Even if it’s a superb machine, it’s not going to sell if it’s 50,000 yen ($434).” [Gamespot]

• Back in the States, the Nintendo sales and marketing VP takes a shot at the Xbox 360, assuring CNET that the Revolution will sell better during the 2006 holiday season than the 360 did this year.

We will sell more units than Xbox 360 did here in the United States in our launch window. I mean, in December, we sold more GameCubes in the United States than Microsoft sold 360s, and Revolution will do better than that.

He also touches on pricing (sub-$300) and the Revolution controller, but nothing we haven’t heard before. [CNET News.com]

A peak at Sony’s PS3 online plans

Friday, January 20th, 2006

A new survey confirms Sony is preparing a central online service for the PlayStation 3 — but it looks like things are still in the early stages of development. The company sent a questionnaire to a number of its registered customers, which was, of course, leaked all around the gaming press.

FULL STORY:

Based on the questions, they’re testing the waters for a centralized online service, presumably along the same lines as Xbox Live. So Microsoft’s CEO was only half-right when he said Sony has no plan for online service — they’ve got one, but they’re still doing surveys.

Full list of questions after the jump.

1. On a typical day, how often do you play games online?
2. Do you own a PSP?
3. What is your preferred Online gaming format?
4. What Online Gaming Formats do you own?
5. Do you think you will purchase a PS3?
6. A single identity and password for all online games?
7. Global Lobbies allowing you to play against anyone in the world?
8. Game Lobbies should be language based. (English, French, German etc)
9. Game Lobbies should be based geographically.
10. A standard, interactive lobby structure for all games.
11. Headset support in all online games?
12. A QWERTY keyboard as standard for messaging.
13. USB Keyboard support for every online title.
14. Friend List allowing you to see online/offline status?
15. Friend List allowing you to see what game your friends are playing?
16. Private Messaging across games?
17. A feedback rating allowing you to choose who you play against?
18. Ability to remove players out via a majority vote?
19. Game Host has the ability to remove players?
20. Automatically filter opponents based on connection quality?
21. The ability to download music, game demos and other content?
22. Ability to access the dedicated game forum whilst in game?
23. Ability to take screenshots during the game and share them with friends?
24. Ability to take movie clips in game and share them with friends?
25. Ability to play my music during a game?
26. An in game grief reporting system?
27. Ability to access and manage your gaming profile via PC, PSP as well as PS3?
28. Community features without the need for a game disc.
29. Ability to choose an Avatar for all online titles.
30. The inclusion of a web browser.
31. A specific lobby only for Adults.
32. Service should feature a Global Ranking system for each game.
33. Game Lobbies should be Eyetoy compatible.

• Sony Survey Outlines Possibilities For PS3 Online Service [Gamasutra]

Pioneer hopes 4 to 7 million PS3s will ship this year

Thursday, January 19th, 2006

An executive from Pioneer Electronics, the company that’s putting the first Blu-ray player on the market in the next month or two, has contributed some very optimistic predictions to the chaos that is PS3 launch news.

FULL STORY:

In an interview with The Digital Bits at the Consumer Electronics Show, senior VP Andy Parsons discussed how the PS3 would provide a huge boost for the Blu-ray user base.

The PS3 is launching right at the forefront of Blu-ray Disc. If Sony ships the kind of numbers we expect them to this year, that will provide a very rapid growth of players out there hungry for titles. We’ve been hearing between 4 and 7 million units could ship.

Whoa! Considering that Xbox 360 shipped about 1.3 million in its first few months, and that the PS3 probably won’t be released anywhere until the middle of this year, that sounds like some wild hyperbole. But hey, it’s launch-season propaganda, and we guess, if production went amazingly well, it could happen. But let’s not go crazy.

• Pioneer’s Andy Parsons Talks Blu-ray Disc [The Digital Bits]
• Pioneer: 4-7 million PS3s to ship in 2006 [CNET/Gamespot]

Sony announces six games, then takes it back

Thursday, January 19th, 2006

We don’t speak Japanese, but we have noticed the latest launch mystery — this time coming from the PlayStation.jp web site.

FULL STORY:

Yesterday, that official site posted a list of PS3 titles, which would have been the first to be confirmed by Sony Japan. Today, they took the games down, as well as any mention of the PS3. Here’s the original list:

  • Angel Rings (RPG)
  • Everybody’s Golf 5 (Sports)
  • Genji 2 (Action)
  • Gran Turismo Series (Racing)
  • Monster Carnival (Action / RPG)
  • The Eye of Judgement (Unknown Genre)

Sony’s statement to GamesIndustry.biz didn’t explain much.

“We are working on the launch of PlayStation 3 and a confirmed list of titles will be announced at the appropriate time.”

We’ll keep waiting. Thanks for the sneak peak.

• Six SCEJ titles removed from release date listings on PlayStation.jp [GamesIndustry]
• SCEI officially confirms development of six titles for next-generation console [GamesIndustry]
• PlayStation.jp’s upcoming releases (Japanese)

UPDATE: Kotaku got a response from Sony PR on the issue, too. Here it is:

These were titles we already disclosed at Tokyo Game Show last year, as titles being developed by Sony Computer Entertainment Japan for PLAYSTATION 3. We do not disclose further details.

• Sony Comments on Posted PS3 Titles [Kotaku]

More speculation on PS3 delays

Tuesday, January 17th, 2006

A lot of stuff we already know has made it into today’s mainstream news cycle, most of it under the heading “PS3 release date in question.”

FULL STORY:

Quoting a few analysts, a story in MarketWatch speculates on some late-launch possibilities:

After touring the Sony booth at CES, analyst William Drewry of Credit Suisse First Boston wrote that “the decision as to whether to delay the PS3 launch has yet to be made and is dependent on (improving its chip yield).” …

“We view any potential delay as being one to two months rather than six months duration,” wrote Drewry.

Another analyst, Evan Wilson of Pacific Crest Securities, said “the most likely scenario” is that PS3 will be released in Japan this summer with about 1 million units and in the U.S. in November with 1 million units, followed by a European launch in March 2007.

The bottom line: We haven’t seen a shred of evidence that the PS3 is ready for a Spring launch, or that anyone — Sony included — has serious intentions of releasing it within the next few months. In the meantime, enjoy a story full of analysts.

• PlayStation 3 launch date in question [MarketWatch]

Xbox Slams PS3’s Progress

Tuesday, January 17th, 2006

In a recent interview an Xbox chief slammed Sony’s PS3 productions.

FULL STORY:

“Nobody knows when Playstation 3 is going to come. The rumours are it will come out in the spring, but only in Japan.”

“Nobody knows what it is going to cost. Who the heck knows what the games will look like for Playstation 3.”

Sony definitely hasn’t been giving us much to prove these statements wrong, but at this point no one can really make an educated statement on PS3’s progress. We’ll keep you posted on this little war of words.

• Xbox chief blasts PS3 [Virgin]

The new boards - PS3Forumz.com

Sunday, January 15th, 2006

We’ve partnered up with our new friends at PS3Forumz.com to make them the official PS3week message board.

FULL STORY:

They’ve already got a pretty active forum going, so head over there on this long, newsless weekend to check the place out. There’s a new forum design on the way, too, so stay tuned.

Oh, one more thing. The guys at PS3Forumz already have a contest going — they are giving away a launch PS3 to one lucky member. As soon as you hit 100 posts, you’re automatically entered. No scams, like all those Google ads running at the top of our site. Here are the details.

PS3week’s official partner - PS3Forumz.com