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Smoke and Mirrors from Sony and Microsoft

CmdrTaco posted more than 9 years ago | from the thinking-about-the-games dept.


An anonymous reader writes "History tells us: Don't believe what you're hearing about the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3.There was a lot of hype last week about the next generation of game machines. Microsoft said the Xbox 360 will ultimately reach 1 billion consumers worldwide, while Sony gave a laundry list of features for the PlayStation 3, showing some jaw dropping footage along the way. (Nintendo promised a Revolution, but didn't go much further than that.) I hate to be a wet blanket, but it's time to come back to reality."

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Can get better later (5, Insightful)

Eunuch (844280) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647890)

I usually remembered some fantastic games coming near the end of the lifecycle, like Earthworm Jim 2 for the SNES or Return of Joker for NES. Developers learn the intricacies of what you can do, and do more amazing stuff as time goes by. Better perhaps than even these artificial demos. Respect the software.

Exception that proves the rule: (2)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648052)

The original Star Raiders [] for the Atari personal computers.

Re:Exception that proves the rule: (1)

It doesn't come easy (695416) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648125)

One of my favorite games...I bought the Atari 800 just to play Star Raiders many years ago.

Re:Can get better later (1)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648069)

It's a little different now though... back in the day with the NES and SNES all games were programmed in assembly and there weren't GPUs and whatnot. Now most games are programmed in higher levels like C++ so the understanding of how the system doesn't really matter like it used to. It'll be up to the compiler writers to get close with the hardware..not the developers. Although some still program in assembly (how do you think they pulled off the FFs on PS2?)'s pretty rare.

Reality? (5, Funny)

Oculus Habent (562837) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647897)

Since when does reality have anything to do [] with videogames?

Here's my reality... (4, Interesting)

garcia (6573) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647903)

History tells me that I shouldn't expect anything exciting from new consoles yet I still am intrigued by the work the marketing teams go through to bring us their latest and greatest... I am even more intrigued that we have people posting this crap (as if we didn't already know it was all bullshit) to their blogs and making themselves sound like they know something we don't.

Since so many people these days are into spouting off basically unsubstantiated rumor and making it appear legit through our "new media outlets" I'll go ahead and state what *I* believe the console makers should do!


You know what I want from gaming consoles? Something *new*. When I say *new* I don't mean hi-def resolutions, better sound, faster game play, or even high density storage mediums. When I say *new* I mean I want to see something I have never in my life seen before...

Problem is that we are stuck in a loop of the same rehashed cafeteria lunches with gaming. "Green beans" slopped on my tray is the same as "Emerald Pods". HL2 and Doom3 are the same as Wolf3D and various others.

It really disappoints me when I am thrilled with simple games like Ms. Pacman, Tetris, and Bejeweled variants yet I am extremely bored with "amazing and real life AI", "hi-def graphics", etc.

Gran Turismo 1 was the end all of racing games apparently as GT2, GT3, and now GT4 (and various other similar racing variants) have all been abysmal remakes of the original. I remember saying how revolutionary Quake1 was. Everything after has been bleh. I think I have made my point...

Sony and MSFT: You want to make me excited about a console? Give me some really incredible titles that are something new and exciting rather than just renamed and rehashed green beans. I guarantee that if you can impress me with some titles you can impress all the people and even those that believe that people like me are just ignoring the "important subtle differences between similar genres". You don't even have to have fancy pre-fab rendering, lifelike graphics, or tons of CPU horsepower. All you need is a new and revolutionary idea that makes me want to play it again and again and again. You won't even have to spend millions on hardware and software research.

Hopefully this will give you a few ideas of what to do. I'll be waiting...

Re:Here's my reality... (4, Insightful)

sehryan (412731) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647990)

Sounds like you might be a closet Nintendo fan, as they have put out those types of games for years. And they seem to be setting up to do something amazing for the next generation.

Re:Here's my reality... (2, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648071)

I wasn't aware that this "article" had anything to do w/Nintendo. It mostly mentioned both Sony and Microsoft's attempts as hoodwinking the public with their glitzy shows of current vaporware.

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

Coming soon! (767296) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648124)

True, but what he was pointing out is that everything you are asking for Nintendo has been delivering... for decades.

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

pthor1231 (885423) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648138)

He wasn't implying that Nintendo was trying to hoodwink anyone, more that Nintendo has some pretty innovative games. At least, more so than PS2 and XBOX. Some that come to mind are the Warioware games, which are addictive as crack, and jut in general the touchpad functionality of the DS. The touchpad doesn't seem to be a terribly useful feature, but it sure is innovative. Also, I don't think Nintendo made this game, but it runs on a GBA, and it has a solar sensor, affecting the game depending on how much light is outside.

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

MikeFM (12491) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648026)

Open the systems to anyone and everyone to develop new programs and make it easy to share those programs with other users. With the power these boxes have there are a lot of possibilities but as always the mainstream is going to play it safe and try to deliver only what they have experience with.

Let some small companies and opensource projects have a real go at the possibilities and see if they can't crank out something innovative. It could be the next killer app.

I think the PS3 is going to be significantly more powerful than the 360 and the instant-clustering ability they are rumored to support could be killer. If Sony makes them friendly enough to non-licensed developers then the PS3 could really do some new stuff. I think Sony is more likely than Microsoft to do so.

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648132)

I doubt it... the only reason we don't see open consoles already is the fact that Sony, MS and even the beloved Nintendo all make royalty checks and licencing fees off each game released for "their" system. If consoles became an open comodity they would only make money off the games they make themselves...which would hurt MS and Sony especially. None of the big boys are willing to give it up for the good of everyone else...not as long as they have a say. :/

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

DuckofDeath87 (816504) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648027)

I really hope this sort of thing is what nintendo means when they say a revolution.

If nintendo does well enough, Sony and MS will get the picture and then they will start making new things. They will follow the money.

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648033)

You want something new? Here, I have an idea, though it's not "new" it's been done in the movies...

Anyone remember Lawnmower Man?

I want a game that I an play in a virtual suit like that, and FEEL every damned thing, without the physical damages involved. I want to be able to reach down, "grab" a pistol, and have my glove, which has nothign in it, only allow me to close my hand so much before it actually fits the "contours" of the gun. I want to feel the "trigger-pull" resistance, and the resulting kickback of firing off a .50 caliber slug.

Too bad none of these uber-rich companies have the balls to attempt something THAT revolutionary.

Apologies for the typos (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648161)

I hate these older first-gen wireless keyboards. They seem to only be able to pick up so many keystrokes per second.. grrr..

I know it's offtopic, still have to apologize. Usually I'm a little bit better at observing what I type.

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

th1ckasabr1ck (752151) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648038)

"You want to make me excited about a console?"

They don't want to make YOU excited about a console - They wanted to make the millions of MTV babies with all of their disposible income excited. These execs are just saying exactly what they need to say to make a gazillion dollars for their respective companies. This happens in every industry, I'm not sure why it's a surprise that it's happening to video games.

Re:Here's my reality... (1)

copenja (840759) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648087)

I disagree. Do you watch movies? Do you refuse to watch any comedies because you already watched Dumb and Dumber? I hope not. If you look at wolf3d vs current generation FPS and can't see the difference I don't know what to say. What about multiplayer? Did wolfstien have CTF, Team Fortress, and other team multiplayer games that are the mainstay of the current generation? The Wolf3d enviroment can barely even be considered 3D, the levels were completely flat. Current generation has complex multi-floor indoor arenas that seemlessly blend with large outdoor zones. What about physics models? Hell, what about jumping?!? Copenja

That's why they both hame cameras (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648100)

What you seek (something really new) I feel like might be delivered through really different interfaces - which is why both the PS3 and Xbox 360 have cameras.

To me the most intersting demo of all was the person from EyeToy where he manipulated virtual cups using real ones, filling them with water and pouring them out. It's sort of the next step in better physics models when we can affect the game world using real objects.

I'm not 100% sure the direction will pan out, but at least it's something kind of new (for home console gaming).

Re:Here's my reality... (4, Insightful)

cowscows (103644) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648105)

There are some new and original games coming out, it's just that it's sometimes hard to find them, because the big sequels are the ones that get he majority of the hype and advertising. That's kind of a bummer, I'll agree.

I think Nintendo hears what you're saying, and tries to be creative in a lot of ways. That sort of gets overlooked, however, because they tend to then brand all of their ideas with their big franchises, Mario being the number one example. So the PS and Xbox fanboys rant about how 50% of the games available for the GC are just mario games, ignoring the fact that there's a whole lot of variety within the Mario universe.

I don't have anymore of an idea what Nintendo's big Revolution is going to be than any other random guy on the street, but I have found their games to be fairly consistently fresh and fun.

as long as they beat the current consoles.. (1)

downsize (551098) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647905)

so what, I'll get one of each after the prices come down. at least its improvement. the article is probably correct to a degree and MS might not make their billion consumer mark, but if anyone has enough marketing power/money to shoot for a billion consoles, its M$

Shocking news! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12647909)

Game console companies are playing games!

Why not though? (3, Insightful)

coop0030 (263345) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647923)

Why wouldn't a company pimp it's product? So maybe they do get carried away, but they have to generate hype somehow.

I think it is completely wrong of them to use pre-rendered images, and say it is actual gameplay footage (killzone, anyone?), but I can't imagine that this early on the developers have even gotten close to figuring out the nuances of the systems.

It all comes down to the games. If a console has powers like a supercomputer, it still won't be fun if the games are terrible.

You don't play the hardware in the console, you play the games. That's all there is to it.

Playing the hardware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648045)

You don't play the hardware in the console, you play the games. That's all there is to it.

You might not, but when I see the specs for the PS3, I think desktop workstation more than video game console. I'd buy one, put Linux on it, get a nice keyboard and mouse, a HD monitor (or two) and fly.

A system far more powerful than a bleeding edge desktop with a cheaper price tag. Ya can't go wrong.

I've said it several times .. (1)

macaulay805 (823467) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647924)

Its not the platform, but the applications that make a difference ....

If a kick-ass game console has the absolute best hardware today, doesn't mean we like playing "Pong4d/v2" all day long.

Re:I've said it several times .. (1)

It doesn't come easy (695416) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647980)

Ah, Pong...those were the days...

Re:I've said it several times .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648046)

It's a straight progession:
  • Pong.
  • Breakout.
  • ???
  • Doom3.

as long as they beatt the current consoles (0, Redundant)

downsize (551098) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647926)

then so what. and I'll probably get one of each after they have been out for a bit, more games are available (and some mod chips :-P ) - at least they are improvements compared to what we have now.

the article is probably correct to some degree and MS might not make their billion consumer mark (who cares?) but if anyone has enough marketing power/money to do it, it's M$.

This isn't a troll, but... (3, Insightful)

FlyByPC (841016) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647928)

...I've never really understood why people (who probably have a fairly modern PC) would be interested in a console system such as an XBox or PlayStation. PCs (of whatever flavor) are so much more capable and customizable than consoles, and are much more flexible as well.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (5, Insightful)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647979)

Funny, I've never understood why people will pay $x000 for a tricked-out gaming PC when they can get the same performance from a $x00 console.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (5, Insightful)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648160)

Funny, I've never understood how people think a pentium 3 733 has near as much horsepower as an athlon 64 3000+. Or that the game even looks nearly as good on the console.

As a huge fan of both consoles and PCs, they both have their place. I would never try to play an FPS on a console. I tried getting along with it for months with Halo 2, but it was like trying to ride a monkey instead of a horse. It's just not meant to be. I also would never want the "latest and greatest" cutting edge game to be on the console - why? Because the graphics aren't going to look nearly as good - how can they, when the video card is about 3 or 4 years old?

Making blanket statements isn't going to work. Consoles do some things well, PCs do some things well. Until I can treat a console like a PC (ie: hook it up to an extremely high resolution monitor and have the option to use a keyboard and mouse), for me, it's going to be my second choice system. With that said, trying to have all my friends huddle around my monitor as we play Double Dash isn't going to work either. There's certain pros and cons to each, and it's up to the individual to decide what they like more - high powered FPS games with input devices that allow for much higher response times, or something that always "just works", can be played with tons of friends, everyone sitting around the living room drinking some beers.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (1)

localzuk (887334) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647999)

What and not have my locked down, illegal to hack black (or whatever colour they come in) box in my front room next to my huge tv? I wouldn't be looked upon as a respectable tech guy then. Many Gadgets == Respect from geeks

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (1)

tepp (131345) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648008)

I have two pc's, a ps2 and an xbox. I use all of them.

I can't hook my PC to my surround sound stereo system or my HDTV. I can't lounge on my sofa using a controller from my PC either. I have to hunch over a keyboard, mouse, and a flat surface for the mouse and a monitor for my PC.

So playing a shooter, or a puzzle game works better on the console. It's more enjoyable.

But playing something that requires a lot of type, or fine cursor control, work better on the computer. For example, The Sims (lots of mouse movements to make them go), Civ2 (shortcut keystrokes are the only way to play), StarCraft, Evercrack I & II, these all play better on a PC.

But if I'm playing Thief III, or Grand Theft Auto IV, or Halo, or Half-Life, or Doom, the tv's surround sound and the easy controller/joysticks work best with the Console.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (1)

Golias (176380) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648146)

I can't hook my PC to my surround sound stereo system or my HDTV. I can't lounge on my sofa using a controller from my PC either. I have to hunch over a keyboard, mouse, and a flat surface for the mouse and a monitor for my PC.

That's slowly changing, though.

With a simple piece of shelf-board for a keyboard & mouse, I have the DVI video of my Mac mini hooked up the the HDMI input of my high-def projector, and a USB-TOSLink adapter to provide surround sound when watching movies and HDTV. Not only has the mini become my High-Def PVR and DVD Player, but I get to play World of Warcraft in 1280x720 on a 119" screen.

(That said, I also have my X-Box plugged in to the component inputs so I can play GTA, DOAX, etc., once in a while. It's also nice having a second DVD player available when I'm using the mini for some other CPU-heavy task.)

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (1)

rackhamh (217889) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648022)

That may be, but for the price of a gaming-caliber PC, you can easily buy a computer that's sufficient for email and word processing, and a console (or two), and games, with cash left over.

Remember, there's still a fairly significant gap between "fairly modern PC" and "gaming PC" -- at least for the latest and greatest games.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (4, Insightful)

0racle (667029) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648032)

I cant play Xenogears, Xenosaga, most Final Fantasies and a whole host of other games on my PC's. You don't buy a console because of the hardware, its all about the games you can get on it. You wouldn't happen to also be the type of person who can't understand why someone would choose to run Windows over Linux when their livelihood requires they run something that only runs on Windows are you?

Because the writing is on the wall (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648053)

All of the best games (and I use just about any definition of the word you'd care to name) are quitee simply, headed to consoles first.

The PC game market is still OK but what company is going to escape the lure of a far larger market with far fewer support hassles?

You can already hook keyboards and mice to consoles. For a while now PC gaming is going to be console hand-me-downs, and it's not going to take long to happen once the next-gen consoles are out.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648054)

PC gaming and console gaming are two different experiences.

Consoles are cheap systems which fit under your TV set, boot up instantly, run fairly quietly, and auto-launch game CD's.

PC's are (slightly) more expensive systems which are typically set up at a work desk, take a couple minutes to start up, and sacrifice the brain-dead ease-of-use which consoles offer in favor of flixibility.

Also, consoles have a much better library of games designed around the hand-held controller.

Now sure, you could put a PC in your living room and tweak it to be a games console, but most people who invest in the price of a good PC want to use it for more than just games, so the living room entertainment is not the best place for it and you would want it set up to launch other apps as easily as games.

Money? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648075)

Because they're cheaper?

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (1)

stevesliva (648202) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648078)

I'm inclined to believe these consoles will be whipping out the polygons at a rate far beyond my parents' $330 eMachines box. They need a GPU about as much as they need an HDTV.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (1)

It doesn't come easy (695416) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648083)

Personally, the dividing line for me is the length of the game. I find console games are good for short, not too strategically minded games, whereas computer games are for longer term, character development type games. Then, of course, there are things like console games are more oriented to multiple players sitting around the TV vs a single person logged into a PC. In the past, my computer has also had far superior graphics plus network play. Of course, all of that has been changing since the last consoles came out. If the consoles live up to the hype (not likely but who knows), it might be worth having a dedicated game computer.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (1)

painandgreed (692585) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648095)

Consoles are all about the "killer app" (just as comptuers are). I bought a PS2 instead of a normal DVD player so I could play Katamari Damacy and Romance of the Three Kingdoms as well as watch DVDs on my big screen TV. Now I'm looking at an X-Box to play Dai Senryaku because I'm getting my ass kicked by friends who can practice all the time. There are certain games I wish to play and they only come on consoles. Which console I buy also depends on which games I desire to play.

Ease of use (1)

pete19 (874979) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648144)

I've never really understood why people (who probably have a fairly modern PC) would be interested in a console system such as an XBox or PlayStation.

I used to think that, until my brother gave me his old PS2. I'm not a hardcore gamer, so I'm not too bothered about customisation and the like. I still use my PC for some games (FPS mostly), but it's just so much easier to come home from the pub with a bunch of mates, hit a switch and play.

Re:This isn't a troll, but... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648159)

Keeping your PC up-to-date in order to be able to play current titles is expensive (you need to upgrade more frequently than with consoles), and still you may end up with games that only "sort of" work.

With consoles, the specifications of the console are well-known, and good games are optimized to make use of exactly as much power and features as is present. Additionally, unlike PC games, the games can be designed with better assumptions about the controller (although as a plus for the PC, a mouse+keyboard combo is good for FPS games...).

Although I own 8 general purpose computers (half of which have decent performance by current standards), I mostly use consoles for gaming. As much as I like to tinker with computers in general, that isn't something I want to do with games. I prefer not to have to tinker to figure out a compromise between details and fps, think about whether a game is really as crappy as it seems or whether I'm just not playing it the way it was designed to be played etc.

Note (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12647929)

The blurb is plagiarized from the opening of the CNN piece. I'd shrug it off as quoting rather than stealing, but if the submitter had the initiative to insert his own link, he could have made it clear that he was quoting....

HYPE (2, Insightful)

COMON$ (806135) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647932)

That is because HYPE is free publicity. Let people become so enamored with the dream that they defend what they do not know to the death. Then no matter the price tag or the downfalls they will cling to it.

That is the beauty in smoke and mirrors.

Indeed. And don't forget... (5, Informative)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647934)

...that ALL Xbox 360 gameplay demos were actually run on Apple Power Mac G5s [] .

Seems like they'd have prototypes at least stable enough to demo at the premier gaming and entertainment show of the year for something that's supposed to ship in less than a couple quarters...

In fact, I can't believe that TIME and all of the huge mainstream coverage that Xbox 360 has gotten hasn't mentioned this. All many of the articles say is that the Xbox 360 is using "a processor from IBM", something likely to not raise most anyone's eyebrows.

But to not mention that Microsoft's multi-billion dollar entry into the next generation of console gaming, heavily watched by many investors and financial sectors, uses the processor family that *Macs* have used since 1994, and most closely related to Apple's current computers, so closely, in fact, that their own Xbox 360 development and demos runs directly on Power Macs? I mean, yeah, I realize that Microsoft or anyone using the best processor architecture for a particular application isn't news; but Microsoft using *Macs* to develop AND demo their next generation console isn't worth a mention to anyone but C|Net?

Re:Indeed. And don't forget... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648097)

and the PS3 demos were all prerendered...

Other mentions (1)

Dark Paladin (116525) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648106)

Every Apple/Mac site that I've run across.

Personally, this is the part of the "next generation" console battle I'm curious about. A big deal was made about how badly Doom 3 performed when it was ported to OS X, of which there are two main reasons used to explain the issue:

Video card drives
Porting from the Intel to the PPC architecture

Basically, because the system was optimized for the x86 processor line, several "hacks" had to be used to get it comperable to the PPC. That's not saying "Intel good, G5 bad", just "different". Like translating between Japanese and English but still missing the localizations and other important issues, so it's not quite exactly the same - but "close enough".

Microsoft has done rather well using PC development ability and bringing them into the console side. Look at how many companies who had hardly done anything on a console were coming out with "PC/Xbox" versions of the games. Same processor, same API - just the controllers were different (and of course, on the Xbox, not nearly the OS load and a single resolution to support).

Now, things are different. On all three systems, it uses an IBM Power variant - not quite a G5, as each have been optimized in different ways, but all share some core technologies. So for a PC developer the API is the same, but now the processor is completely different. Close enough to the Mac line that there may be difficulties making a PC/Xbox 360 game - or at least the same difficulty level as going Xbox 360 -> PC as there would be going Xbox 360 -> OS X - easier in some ways, since the development boxen are modified G5 systems.

It will be curious to see if this has any impact at all upon Mac based gaming. My gut says "no, not really", but with a majority of game developers going to PPC based architectures, it does make you wonder a bit.

Re:Indeed. And don't forget... (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648154)

Something that also isn't mentioned is that MS has lost hundreds of millions on the Xbox. That was built using a modified PC architecture. How much will they need to break even on the Xbox 360 considering it has required significantly more R&D?

Only Kinda True... (1)

MattyCobb (695086) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647935)

"The PlayStation 2 was going to offer AOL Instant Messaging and have characters whose facial expressions were incredibly lifelike as they progressed through the game. AIM and PS2 were never again spoken in the same sentence - and the lauded "emotion engine" didn't come close to living up to its promise."

Well, AIM was never really integrated into the PS2... this much is true. However, in EA games anyway, you can sign on with your AIM account instead of creating one. Hardly global instant messaging, but at least you have one ID and password and you can IM others on in the games...

Verging on plagiarism (5, Insightful)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647936)

You know, it would be nice if you could at least tell where the submitter's comments end and where the first paragraph of the linked article begin. Quotation marks, anyone? "From the article:" perhaps?

Re:Verging on plagiarism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12647960)

Has anyone ever told you you're stupid?

Re:Verging on plagiarism (1)

rackhamh (217889) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647967)

I had the same thought. The anonymous reader didn't write that, Chris Morris did. Unless they're the same person.

Back to life (1)

killmenow (184444) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647943)

Back to reality

Re:Back to life (2, Funny)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648042)

"Back to reality"

Dwayne Dibbly? Oh thanks for reminding me!

Smoke and mirrors? Bring it on! (2, Interesting)

Wesley Felter (138342) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647944)

Hey, those are difficult graphical effects to do right. I don't think I've ever seen realistic smoke in a console game yet.

In the immortal words of Chuck D (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12647947)

Don't beleive the hype!

Seriously, the Sony hype puts the PS3 being close to 20 times more powerful than the best Opteron out there. It's almost like having a small Cray supercomputer in your home. Hype. Nothing else.

I beleive it when I see it!

Hype, Hype, and More Hype (3, Interesting)

tepp (131345) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647953)

The Xbox 360 is a new console. That's great. I'll certainly buy one shortly after launch.

But it's JUST a new console.

I saw the MTV Xbox 360 launch tv show and was amazed at how they hyped this thing up to be, gosh darn it, the next best thing since loosing my virginity. I mean, the one shot where they first reveal it to a crowd of screaming geeks, and it's up on a platform above the crowd, lit from above... that shot was nearly identical to the scene of the Jews worshiping the Golden Calf from Moses. I intoned to my husband, "We worship our new god! We worship our new god!" as the crowd screamed... he laughed, I didn't. It just pushed my awareness of hype from beyond "silly yet trying to get publicity" to "serously wierding me out".

I mean, it's just a game console. It will be a good game console. But in five years time, there will be a new game console to replace it. And so on in another five years. Technology marches on and we will continously be updating our consoles. This one is JUST a game console, heck, it won't even give me a hand job. Now if it came with a vibrator attachment... maybe I'd call it a revolution....

But seriously, game companies, lay off the insane hype. It's just a game console.

Re:Hype, Hype, and More Hype (1)

Deliveranc3 (629997) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648091)

You want a handjob... you have a husband... you want a vibrator... you have a low UID... are you a troll or giving us personal information...


Re:Hype, Hype, and More Hype (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648107)

You obviously haven't seen this [] video.

I must be dreaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648133)

Let see, a woman, married, talking about an Xbox on Slashdot, and mentioning a vibrator option...

Nah, never happened....

Re:Hype, Hype, and More Hype (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648137)

But it does come with a vibrator attatchment. Most consoles now come with a vibrating controller. Now, finding the game that causes it to vibrate might be a little difficult.

Hype is fun. (2, Interesting)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647958)

The reality is too, that hype is also fun.

I'm waiting for the games that are coming out, not just the console itself. I wasn't jazzed about the PS2 particularly,until I saw games I liked for it.

the MGS4 trailer has me hot in the pants.

Re:Hype is fun. (1)

BigumD (219816) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648152)

I agree with you until the last line. What's so great about that trailer? It shows virtually nothing about the game. Mildly amusing, yes...

News Flash! (1)

Golias (176380) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647962)

Item! Game consoles might not change your life after all. I know, it comes as a complete shock to us at CNN as well... but after researching this report, it turns out that game console companies sometimes hype the technical potential of consoles, and those expectations are seldom realized.

In our next report, we will demonstrate that political candidates from both parties often fail to keep their campaign promises. We're pretty sure this one will knock your socks off as well. ... at least, if you are as incredibly fucking naive as we are.

And to recap.... (1)

ARRRLovin (807926) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647966)

...the rehashing of what we just reiterated, we bring you this article.

Santa Clause (1)

Fr05t (69968) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647969)

I know Santa Clause isn't real, but it's still fun to get excited about x-mas.

Re:Santa Clause (1)

RevengeOfPoopJuggler (872968) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648009)

I know Santa Clause isn't real

Whatchoo talkin bout, Willis?

Re:Santa Clause (4, Funny)

peculiarmethod (301094) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648099)

I know Santa Clause isn't real, but it's still fun to get excited about x-mas.

This is Slashdot, my friend.. the higher up the UID's go, the more likely there are lots of pre-teens and teens.. many of which require you to preface your comment with *SPOILER*. Poor kids.

It's all marketing (1)

Bullfish (858648) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647989)

How can someone be taken by surprise by marketing hype anymore? Be it films, software, hardware, cars or drugs. There is an industry out there who's existence is tied to convincing you to buy someone's crap.

Generally, the more something is hyped, the less likely I am to believe the claims.

not to be an whiny guy (2, Insightful)

grungebox (578982) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647994)

But shouldn't someone edit that to say, "The latest Game Over column at CNN Money notes, 'History tells us: Don't believe what you're hearing about the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3.There was a lot of hype last week about the next generation of game machines. Microsoft said the Xbox 360 will ultimately reach 1 billion consumers worldwide, while Sony gave a laundry list of features for the PlayStation 3, showing some jaw dropping footage along the way. (Nintendo promised a Revolution, but didn't go much further than that.) I hate to be a wet blanket, but it's time to come back to reality.' Here's a link to the rest of the article." or something to that effect? It seems to me that "anonymous reader" is not giving props where props are due, bordering on plagiarizing. I know, we can all RTFA and find out he stole the paragraph verbatim, but isn't that like releasing a book called "Fahrenheit 451" and then putting a small endnote that says, "Oh, um, this was written by Ray Bradbury."?

Re:not to be an whiny guy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648122)

Get a haircut, it looks like your mother fucked a monkey.

anyone else remember (1)

tont0r (868535) | more than 9 years ago | (#12647998)

anyone else remember before ps2 was launched? the promised 5.1 sound all over the place, like 20+ different levels of pressure for the buttons, amazing graphics, etc.

and now we all know its the weakest of all the systems, 5.1 is a roughy, and there are 2 levels of pressure (hard, and very hard). so im not getting all giddy over the specs being posted. ultimately, it boils down to who has the better games?. and right now, no one (including the developers) knows this. to assume that xbox 360 will have over a billion units out there is just insane. but hey, good luck to them.

A billion isn't unreasonable (1)

briancnorton (586947) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648001)

It sounds like a big number, but factor in that the average lifespan of a unit is about 2 years under average usage. If you leave it on all the time, drop that by a third. If the lifespan is supposed to be 5 years, you have 3 units per user, some will break more. I'm on my 3rd PS2, and I play MAYBE three hours/week. So if they can sell 333 million of them, and get people to replace them when they break, they can hit a billion.

Doubt it. (1)

Eunuch (844280) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648036)

I've had nearly every console out there, and have never busted a single one. Maybe a controller here and there. Someone working for these companies has the real data, and I doubt they plan for more than 1/8th needing to be replaced.

Re:A billion isn't unreasonable (1)

pthor1231 (885423) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648065)

What exactly do you do to your systems to go through them that fast?! I am on my first PS2, and have had it since about 6 months after it was released. I average about fifteen hours or so a week playing, and have moved it several times (long car trip and bumping and whatnot) and I have still not managed to break it. Maybe I just got lucky and got a damn well made one.....

Re:A billion isn't unreasonable (1)

Tablespork (564764) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648090)

They're estimating a billion users, not units sold. So a family of five all using one console counts as five users, while your situation only counts as one. The fact that you take such great care of your PS2 that you're on your third, well I think it's abnormal.

Re:A billion isn't unreasonable (1)

heir2chaos (656103) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648092)

Yeah, but the article says "1 billion consumers" not 1 billion units.

Good point. MTBF? (1)

ShinSugoi (783392) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648128)

Parent is right, I'm on my third PS2 as well. Actually, I wonder what Sony and Microsoft set as their desired Mean Time Between Failure?

It would be interesting to find out if the console producers pick low MTBFs with the expectation that consumers will ultimately buy replacement consoles. While this might seem initially to be counter-intuitive since the first revision of the hardware is sold at a loss, later revisions are often sold at considerable profit.

Reporting Games (4, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648012)

This kind of critical reporting is the difference between journalism and PR ("public relations" or the "press releases" that are its lifeblood). But gaming journalism still has a long way to go

"It's not hard to forgive the hardware publishers for a little bit of hyperbole at E3, the annual trade show of the video game industry. It is, after all, their moment in the sun. But now that the crowds have gone home and the booth babes have changed back into street clothes, it's time to recognize that a fair number of the promises made last week will quietly fade away."

The best time to report critical insights, especially those counter to PR claims, is during the "moment in the sun". When everyone's paying attention. Otherwise, reporting is a footnote, and the PR floods the media. Result: most people believe the unopposed PR. Gaming coverage has been improving, as competition heats up in a bigger market of people with competing interests, not just gaming.

To see how badly "reporting" can go wrong, just look at the synthetic world of national and international affairs in the mass media, rarely insightful, and totally distorted in representing reality. With games becoming ever more realistic, and reality ever more bent to our imaginations, it's ironic that reporting on reality becoming more of a fantasy game, while gaming reporting becomes more realistic.

Amara's Law (1)

602 (652745) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648017)

Amara's Law: "We tend to overestimate the effect of a technology in the short run and underestimate the effect in the long run." ople []

Stop the press!! (1)

kronocide (209440) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648023)

Marketing departments exaggerate! Advertising doesn't always tell the truth! Someone should post this on the Slashdot first page immediately! Spread the word!!

For the benefit... (4, Informative)

MrNemesis (587188) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648029)

...of all those who haven't seen it yet;

Here [] is an article where the chief financial officer of nVidia confirms that the supposedly "in-game" footage from the new PS3 is a load of cobblers, cos the RSX chip isn't finished yet and doesn't exist in a workable form.

Sigh... it's the emotion engine/missile guidance systems all over again.

Journalistic filler (1)

Winterblink (575267) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648049)

I RTFA... what a pile of fluff. Lets summarize.

Look that former two generations of console unveilings vs gameplay post-release. Imply trend will continue.

This guy got paid for that? Where the fuck do I sign up for that job?

1/6 - 1/7th of the planet? (1)

heir2chaos (656103) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648050)

1 Billion? That's a little absurd. Let's put this into perspective. Selling one console per second that would put them at 30 years of selling to reach that goal. I know that they would be selling more than that per second, but it's just something to help put your mind around how large that number is.

Also, what about people the amount of people who don't have electricity, who are too young/old/whatever to play it. Those that wouldn't have the interest, those that wouldn't have the money. I just can't comprehend where someone would get the number of a billion.

so basically this new set of games will (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648051)

fulfil the promise of the last set?

"That's not really the fault of developers. It's not hard to make early tech demos especially impressive, since you don't have to worry about including artificial intelligence or physics or any of the other resource chomping features that have to go into games to make them fun"

The PS3 and Box360 have these resources, no?
For 1080i HD as well?

"But as Sony talks of users using the PS3's optional high-def camera to launch their own broadcasts and Microsoft discusses non-gamers hopping onto Xbox Live to sell shirts or skateboards they've created for the latest "Tony Hawk" game, take it with a grain of salt."

This is not within the capabilitiy of the hardware, or the users?

blah blah blah (1)

burgeswe (873550) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648068)

Look, nobody that went to E3 thinks that the xbox 360 is going to tbe the one console that's so realistic that you can stave off female companionship and copulate online.

What is true, however, is that both the xbox 360 and the Playstation 3 are going to be incredible hardware-wise, and will take years to tap their full potential.

The gaming will be can argue all you want about dropped features, but this works the other way, too... I'm sure both consoles will come with a new slew of features that haven't been planned/announced yet.

Are the comanies completely honest, no! But right now, it's a game of marketing, and in the end the gamers are the ones who will win

A bigger breakthrough than the wheel! (1)

ardor (673957) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648076)

Yea, they are so advanced, they can even bake pizza for you, in an integrated stone oven! And don't forget about the huge amount of WD40 included! And if the PS3/xbox360 fusion reactor has insufficient fuel, an integrated auxiliary warp drive can move the thing into the Sun's corona, and a mini-fuel scoop can suck in truckloads of hydrogen!

Oh yes, and you can play games with it, too.

First one with photorealistic "adult" games wins (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648085)

Everyone wanting something different in gaming - that's one thing technology has not caught up on. Yet.

MSFT is NOT claiming 1billion by themselves! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648089)

quoted from post "Microsoft said the Xbox 360 will ultimately reach 1 billion consumers worldwide"

Actually...quoting MSFT's Peter Moore, "I think we as an industry should have the goal of touching 1 billion consumers in the next generation and that's as much a message to Sony and Nintendo." from

I just don't get it. (1)

Sierpinski (266120) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648096)

Instead of Microsoft telling us how many units they are going to sell. (GOING to sell, not MAY sell), why not give some reasons why they think that? No wonder so many people can't stand Microsoft, they seem to arrogant with their projections. To them, they're not projections, they're fact, or whatever.

Now I'm not trying to bash them or anything, but maybe not as many people would loathe them if they just started managing their PR a little better.

Its like some vacuum salesman (a younger guy) started off trying to sell me a $1799 vacuum cleaner by telling me about his opportunity to go to Mexico for a week if he sells enough units. I don't know about the general public, but telling me what YOU will get out of me buying something isn't anywhere as important as telling me what I'm going to get. (On a side note, the first time I said no, he cut the price in half, if that tells you anything about those high priced vacuums.)

E3 babes and the decline of console gaming (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648098)

While this post fails to mention the hype is derived from the recent E3 conference, observations from E3 can actually be interesting for sensible and responsible gamers and consumers.

"As I watched the bored-looking "babes" strut across the stage at the Tecmo booth, I thought about what the industry has done when fans have occasionally tried to take creative ownership of the games they adore. Recently a bunch of college kids set up a site called, where they shared home-brewed "skins" for the players of a Tecmo volleyball game. The skins were free, and they gave players more options for dressing (or undressing) the game characters. But of course, Tecmo threatened to sue. Even though the skins were hardly a substantive replacement for the game - indeed, you'd have to buy the game to use them - the company wouldn't stand for it." ( [] )

However, the original post by CmdrTaco merely seeks to convey rhetoric of "Warning: don't do what you already won't do" and comes off as a transparent anti-hype advertisement.

Moore's Law (1)

Metasquares (555685) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648101)

Moore's Law makes thirtyfold increases in power over less than 5 years unlikely (though not impossible - that's a misstatement of the law). I wouldn't be surprised if, like the Revolution, the other two consoles are about 2-3x more powerful than their predecessors, or perhaps slightly more, as they were released before the GameCube was.

Okay, enough already (1) (321932) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648103)

enough of the information-less, ad-revenue seeking , spectacularly headlined articles about the XBox please. Lets just wait until there is some real news, shall we?

EVERYONE over-hypes their product during a show like that. I expected some world-shocking revelation, but this is largely a prediction that things aren't going to be as claimed during the show based on how things came along with previous models. Whoop-tee-fucking-do.

Now, if Microsoft had demoed the XBox as if it was all ready to be shipped, but actually ran the software on, say, two G5's under the table, now _that_ would be smoke and mirrors. But the article doesn't mention that, so that must not have happened.

How could anybody trust Sony... (1)

Stu L Tissimus (873928) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648114)

After all of that bull*bleep!* hype about Emotion Engine?/ We've never seen anything of the sort on PS2. And take that Killzone video with a grain of salt, it's been proven to be false.

An anonymous reader writes? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12648119)

It's either Chris Morris, or an anonymous plagiarizer.

Marketing vs. Reality (1)

1967mustangman (883255) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648123)

This is nothing more than the all too familiar battle of marketing vs. reality. I am sure that there are alot of engineers and coders at both Sony and Microsoft that are jsut shaking thier heads at what they saw at E3, but it is so typical. When a coder makes a promise the maxium is "always under promise and over deliver", for marketers I think an appropriate one is "Over promise get a lot of people to buy it, thne blame the Nerds when it doesn't meet our promos."

Revolution (1)

Tablespork (564764) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648141)

Anybody else as curious/excited as I am to find out what Nintendo's big secret is? Maybe I'm just being an overly-optimistic loyalist, but I think they have more up their sleeve than the press is giving them credit for. The Revolution is practically ignored in every article I've read, it's always "PS3 vs. Xbox 360, and oh yea, Nintendo has one too but we don't know anything about it yet so they don't count."

Not much has changed (1)

Norfair (845108) | more than 9 years ago | (#12648145)

Looking at each 'nextgen' console, I get the feeling that I'm not really witnessing a leap in technology on the scale of SNES -> Playstation. I'm probably going to skip this coming generation just as I did the last/current (PS2,GC,Xbox), and I know a LOT of people who are thinking on the same lines. It boils down to the simple, oft-repeated fact that the gaming industry is 90% focused on graphics/sound, 9% on the multi-player aspect, 1% gameplay.
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