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Sliced Gaming Feature: 500 Words Or Less: Sony's Catch-Up Plan

Writer: Nick Schaedel
Posted: 29th May 2009, 6:49pm
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We're back for the second of what has turned out to be a bi-weekly feature, 500 Words Or Less. This time around, we wonder if Sony can catch up to Microsoft this generation, and what they'd need to do to make it happen.


Nick Schaedel:

Its got to be about the games. Sony have tried to sell the PS3 as an entertainment platform for two years now, with only decent results. For a while it was the cheapest Blu-Ray player on the market, and that would have helped move some units, but that's no longer the case. It still might be one of the better players out there because it can be updated with new firmware and supports BD-Live, but the average consumer that just barely knows enough about HD to want to play the discs won't care. So, it's back to the games. Well, a price cut would help too. With the 360 now undercutting the Wii, Sony's system is still just too expensive. As has been mentioned, there are now cheaper Blu-Ray players on the market, so if it wants to build up any momentum, its got to drop the price. $599 would be good, but $549 (the same as an Xbox 360 Elite) would be even better. So, yes, price is important.

But back to the software. It needs exclusive, AAA, first and third party games. Microsoft has been stealing its big games by shelling out cash to ensure that what were once solely Sony titles are now making the jump to the 360. Even exclusive downloadable content for multiplatform games is another incentive to go with the 360. Is this year the year? Maybe. Killzone 2 was a big game, but they need Gran Turismo 5 to finally come out, as well as a whole raft of other titles. You need reasons to buy the game on the PS3 rather than the 360. Trophies, while late to the game, are nevertheless appreciated, but more effort needs to be put towards highlighting the system's unique strengths. It looks like this year we'll begin to see the console pull away from the Xbox graphically, but the Dual Shock 3 can and should be used as a selling point. Sony needs to stop focussing on the PS3 as an entertainment platform - Home, Vidzone, etc. - and start luring back gamers with compelling software.


Greg Bamberg:

Sony decided from the get-go to market a more expensive platform with more features than its rivals. Instead of getting “just a gaming system”, they offered an entertainment center. Its effectiveness can be debated but with Blu-Ray, HDMI output, an internet browser and the rest, the system was designed to be more than a gaming console. To this end, Sony implemented other, somewhat half-assed, features to give consumers more bang for their buck. Large storage capacity, a photo/movie viewer and even motion-sensing capabilities in the controller. At the end of the day though, most gamers don’t want all the extra bells and whistles - they ...

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