E3 2013: The Sony and PlayStation 4 Roundup

sony-ps4-bannerSony had one simple mission heading into their 2013 E3 press conference: Don’t screw it up! Microsoft handed Sony an absolute gift at every turn from the Xbox One’s DRM to privacy issues to used games to rentals to the price.

Not only did Sony not screw up their press conference, they committed the video game console equivalent to homicide. Sony played the Rains of Castamere live on stage and slew the Xbox One in a bloody and violent way that saw them destroy Microsoft’s next-generation challenger in every way possible. Even George R.R. Martin was shocked at the carnage.

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Five Dream E3 Announcements for the PlayStation 4

playstation-4-announcement-bannerSure, I could sit here and wax business about what I think Sony will announce for the PlayStation 4 because it will make sense from a business perspective. And as interesting as I like analyzing the business implications of the actions of the video game industry, I love to loosen up my tie, roll up my sleeves and just game.

So rather than go through the rumour mill for the five most likely announcements that Sony will make at its big E3 press event, here are the five announcements that I most want Sony to make for the PlayStation 4.

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Console Wars: The Xbox One’s Failure to Launch is a Marketing Failure

playstation-4-vs-xbox-one-controllersHaving had a few days to digest the two very different launch events for Sony’s PlayStation 4 and Microsoft’s Xbox One, I’ve come to a realization. As much as people don’t seem to like the Xbox launch, it wasn’t a failure in and of itself. In fact, I believe that Microsoft successfully accomplished what it set out to do.

The Xbox One and PlayStation Four both play video games. However, if you were to watch the two launch events, I’d understand if you were a little confused by that statement. While the PlayStation 4’s launch emphasised how it plays games and how it augments that with the social networking and sharing features, the Xbox spent comparatively little time talking about the games.

The difference in the launches was an example of how the console manufacturers are positioning their next-gen consoles in the market.

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Canadian PSN Users Can Get Freebies Thanks to a Class-Action Lawsuit

playstation-network-logoIf Canadian users on the PlayStation Network or with Qriocity or Sony Online Entertainment accounts thought they had gotten all the freebies they could out of Sony after the 2011 PSN hack, think again. A recently settled class-action lawsuit in Ontario means that Canadian PSN/SOE users can get some more free stuff from Sony.

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Console Wars: A Battle No One is Trying to Win

nintendo-vs-sony-vs-microsoft-console-warsOne console has a sharing feature that nobody wanted and unveiled with a slightly underwhelming line-up. Another console is strongly rumoured to mandate a permanent connection to the internet to play games and is likely to prevent playing used games. The third console is so underpowered that some third-party publishers have abandoned it less than six months after release.

For as excited as everybody was about this generations console wars, it sure seems to be shaping up to be a race to the bottom and a case of not survival of the fittest but survival of the least weak.

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Uncharted 3 and the Future of Triple-A Games Going Free-To-Play

uncharted-3-multiplayer-free-to-play-bannerI must admit that I was quite surprised to find out that Uncharted 3’s multiplayer component went free-to-play earlier this week. I couldn’t quite make heads or tails as to why Naughty Dog and Sony Computer Entertainment would release a part of a game for free or who would want to play such a thing.

But when you think about it, giving away a part of the game that isn’t the core component that’s the reason why people by the game on release day actually makes perfect sense. That’s because Naughty Dog’s play isn’t your standard free-to-play model of funding the game using solely the minority of gamers who provide microtransaction revenue.

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The Evolution of Video Game Consoles (Infographic)

Earlier this week, I mentioned that rumours suggest that we’ll see the PlayStation Four and likely the Xbox 720 reach store shelves before the end of the year. That means that the major console manufacturers will all have a console in the eighth generation of home video games consoles. We’ve come a long way since the first generation of consoles which included the likes of the Magnavox Odyssey, Coleco Telstar and Nintendo Color TV Game.

For a look back at the history of video game consoles, we have this handy infographic. Continue reading

Rumours say Sony is Dropping the DualShock Controller for the PS4

broken-ps3-controllerIt appears the folks in charge of designing Sony’s PlayStation 4 live by Red Green’s philosophy of if it ain’t broke, you’re not trying. A recent report on CVG says that Sony will radically change their traditional DualShock analog controller for one that will include a touchscreen on the front and biometric sensors built into the grips. Continue reading

E3 2012: The Sony Outlook

While Sony is the second console manufacturer to have their big E3 press conference, thanks to Nintendo pre-show video presentation, they were really the final company to show off their wares. With Nintendo showing off the new Wii U, Microsoft showing off their new Smart Glass app and a massive $5.5 billion net loss their 2012 fiscal year (ending March 31, 2012), Sony was expected to make a splash at E3. Continue reading

Entertainment Link-Off: E Pluribus Anus

Happy Memorial Day everyone! To celebrate America’s kickoff to the summer, I’m here to cover the entertainment and pop culture beat. What contest in hell did you people win to deserve this? There are alternatives to reading me this weekend. Men In Black III and Chernobyl Diaries are opening this weekend. Actually, you’d be better off locking yourself inside and grabbing MiB1 and Paranormal Activity off Netflix instead. Anyway, let’s start with Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

What happens when a new technology threatens an ancient business model? A massive lawsuit! Fox, NBC and CBS are suing Dish Network over a new feature which eases skipping over ads on DVR. (Time)

After the jump, the death of the screenplay, scads of Community links and even Siri hates Chris Brown. Continue reading