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Phil Harrison Answers Your Questions

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the ulp-tough-room dept.

PlayStation (Games) 185

Right around this time last month, we asked for your questions to pass on to President of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios Phil Harrison. With the launch of the PlayStation 3 console in Europe, Mr. Harrison has had kind of a full month. He still found us the time to answer your questions, and today we have them to read. Below are his very thorough responses to the questions you posed, ranging in subject from the European delay to the public perception of SCEA. Make sure to give them a look, and many thanks again to Mr. Harrison for his time.1.) 'Ask 1996-Phil' by The-Bus
According to your Wikipedia bio, you joined SCEA in 1996. If you could go back in time and give professional advice to your 1996 self, what would you say? If you were to give professional advice to people interested in entering the industry today, what would it be?

Phil Harrison: Wikipedia is great, but as you probably know, my bio was not written by me, so I'd not trust it completely...I actually joined Sony's game division in 1992 just before SCE was formed. I joined the nascent Computer Entertainment Project to help bring PlayStation to the European developer community, while simultaneously kick-starting our in-house development team in London. I moved to the US in 1996. To answer your time travel question, the professional advice I'd give myself is to "think bigger". When we launched PlayStation we really had no idea we'd be talking about an industry that would more than triple in size and reach a 3rd of US homes so quickly. If I'd had the chance to revisit my 1996 self I would have encouraged him to be more ambitious, bigger scale, more aggressive in changing the way games were made and also to have invested more heavily in creating online experiences - however experimental, however unsuccessful.

As for professional advice to how to get into the industry, the way I came in to the business was a rocky road which, frankly, has got even harder since I made it my full-time career in 1987. The entrepreneurial, freelancer approach is very difficult without a portfolio of work or very good contacts. My advice to anyone thinking about joining this industry is first and foremost get as much formal education as you possibly can. If you are interested in a programming or technical career, a degree in a computer science-related area is vital, as is a very high level of mathematics. Specialize as late as you can in your educational path. For an artist or designer, the need for a degree is less vital if you have a clearly demonstrable talent, but that puts the emphasis on a brilliant, and differentiated, portfolio of work. Even so, I would encourage anyone to get a well-regarded degree-level education as a minimum before even considering applying for a position. Animators and 3D modellers should take advantage of systems at school to start building a portfolio of work. Putting up your own website is a great way of pointing potential employers at your work - even if it's a selection of 10 second clips or a gallery of rendered stills. But please make them different and unusual. Finally, when you come to an interview make sure you are prepared! Research the company you are applying to, play their games, be prepared to comment on industry trends and issues and know as much as you can about the area you are interested in working in. Go to GDC if you possibly can, make friends through the various online communities and societies dedicated to game developers and start building up an industry "buddy list". It will come in very useful.

Both really great questions, by the way.

2.) 'Philosophy of gaming...' by 7Prime
What is your personal philosophy regarding the future of videogames as a genre? For example, where do you see games, in terms of social and cultural identification, 20 years from now, and how do you think the nature of the PS3 plays into the culmination of this overall vision?

Phil Harrison: Another very good question - and hard to answer properly in the space available. My personal philosophy is to make the entertainment experience of videogames available to everyone. I want to see the audience of people who play videogames, of any type, on any device, include practically anyone on the planet. Whether it be an immersive action game that appeals primarily to young adults, or a casual game that is enjoyed by the entire family, I hope that videogames and electronic forms of interactive entertainment continue to expand to new audiences, all the time. Linked to that, I want to see videogames given more credibility as a mainstream form of entertainment through appropriate cultural commentary and criticism. If you read a newspaper in pretty much any country in the world, you will read intelligent discourse on the cultural impact of film, music, literature, theatre, television, radio, art and fashion every day - although it's unusual to read anything about videogames apart from occasional reviews. There are, of course, exceptions - and it is thankfully changing, but we've still a long way to go as category or a genre before we can be considered culturally and socially significant. This is changing - and anyone who plays games will see the influence game graphic design has today on general graphic design in a multitude of ways - from websites and posters to TV commercials. What I hope is that 20 years from now the distinctions will be completely overcome and videogames as a passtime will be given the same cultural and social currency as a book, a film, a TV show or a piece of architecture. After all, the popular culture creators of 20 years from now will all, largely, have grown up playing, or at least being intimately aware of, videogames. The writers and commentators on those same popular culture creators will all have had the same experience playing videogames growing up - at which point the circle is complete. I don't think there is a culmination to this overall vision - it will be a constant process. Each successive platform brings new technology to the experience of games and helps expand the audience still further. I hope PS3 will be seen 20 years from now as a crucial influence in the growth of our industry.

3.) 'Choices' by mothlos and drinkypoo
Now that you have a few months with PS3s in the hands of consumers and plenty of reviews to pour over, is there anything that you would have done differently in designing the machine? Given the problems that seem to have come with Blu-Ray, does it still look like including the drive in the system was worth it? And if so, was it worth it for the PS3, for the Blu-Ray format, or for both?

Phil Harrison: First of all, I would not take credit for designing the machine. As Chairman and CEO - and head of the architecture lab in SCEI Tokyo, Ken Kutaragi is responsible for the hardware design strategy for SCE. I think that PlayStation 3 is a masterpience of design and technology - it packs a huge amount of performance into an amazingly small (and quiet) box. Now it may not yet be apparent what all that technology is actually for - something that gives us plenty to focus on for the next few years - the overall design of the machine is very good. The Cell processor is wildly powerful and developers are now beginning to understand what that means for game design. The choice of putting a hard disk drive in every machine was the absolute right decision technically, but is a tough choice financially. There is no denying we had some start-up challenges with Blu-ray at the beginning but that is the price you pay for leading edge technology. Thankfully, those challenges are behind us and I stand firmly by the decision to include BD-ROM as the physical media format. Next generation game design demands the capacity of Blu-ray. Once we'd adopted BD as a game format, there was little incremental cost to support BD as a movie format. Given that the majority of BD movies are now using dual layer (50GB) discs, we're seeing the importance of the higher BD capacity much earlier in the life of the format compared to DVD. First and foremost, I believe it was the right decision for PlayStation 3 to use BD for games - and the fact that is helps kick-start BD as the next generation movie format is a bonus for all of us, players and game-makers.

4.) 'Homebrew Gaming' by Anonymous Coward, maynard, and flitty
If someone manages to get homebrew games running on the PS3, will there be firmware updates to stop this kind of development, to protect your software developers, or is homebrew something you are planning on and even encouraging? Is there a chance that the policy of restricting access to PS3 graphics hardware (via the hypervisor) could be revised to encourage us homebrew developers? How does this strategy differ from your strategy with PSP homebrew? Has Sony considered offering kernel patches and an RSX optimized OpenGL library for PS3/Linux?

Phil Harrison: Now, let me first say that Homebrew is sometimes a misused term and so for the purposes of this answer I will exclude pirates and hackers with illegal intentions from the definition.

I fully support the notion of game development at home using powerful tools available to anyone. We were one of the first companies to recognize this in 1996 with Net Yaroze on PS1. It's a vital, crucial aspect of the future growth of our industry and links well to the subtext of my earlier answers. When I started making games on the Commodore 64 in the 1980's, the way I learned to make games was by re-writing games that appeared in magazines. Really the best bit about a C64 was when you turned it on it said "Ready?" with a flashing cursor - inviting you to experiment. You'd spend hours typing in the code, line-by-line, and then countless hours debugging it to make it work and then you'd realise the game was rubbish after all that effort! The next step was to re-write aspects of the game to change the graphics, the sound, the control system or the speed of the gameplay until you'd created something completely new. I might share this with a few friends but not for commercial gain at that time. But the process itself was invaluable in helping me learn to program, to design graphics, animations or sounds and was really the way I opened doors to get into the industry. Now, those industry doors are largely closed by the nature of the video game systems themselves being closed. So, if we can make certain aspects of PS3 open to the independent game development community, we will do our industry a service by providing opportunities for the next generation of creative and technical talent. Now having said all that, we still have to protect the investment and intellectual property rights of the industry so we will always seek the best ways to secure and protect our devices from piracy and unauthorized hacking that damages the business.

5.) 'Retaining PS3 Exclusives' by Sciros
With a number of previously-PS3-exclusive titles having gone multiplatform, are there any efforts to prevent this from occurring in the future, or is it of little concern to SCE?

Phil Harrison: We have the widest selection of meaningful exclusives on PlayStation 3 - by virtue of our own investments in our development studios and strategic support of independent developers and publishers. I really don't believe gamers mind who makes the game, so long as the games they buy on their system are the best games they can get anywhere - and that their system investment is secure in the knowledge that there are plenty more coming in future. Within SCE Worldwide Studios we have the largest platform-dedicated development resource in the industry - with more people, and more teams, dedicated to making games exclusively for PlayStation 3. So my main "concern" is to make sure those games are absolutely the best they can be.

6.) 'Rumble' by SuperCharlie
How long will we have to wait until we see a first party controller with rumble?

Phil Harrison: As we've only recently resolved our legal differences with Immersion, it's a little early to answer this. However, you can play games on PS3 that support devices that have force-feedback already, most notably driving games through steering wheels. 7.) '20 GB PS3' by !ramirez Why is Best Buy discontinuing sales of the 20 GB PS3?

Phil Harrison: I can't comment on any specific retailer's stocking decisions, but I think that retailers know their customers very well and make their product selections based on anticipated demand. In Europe, we've only sold the 60GB version based on retailer demand and over 800,000 units have already been sold in just over 2 weeks.

8.) 'Europe?' by Ant P. and Zonk
Given that the hardware sold in Europe has less robust backwards compatibility than in the US and Japan, and the high price the console sells at because of the VAT, do you feel that you've in any way alienated the European gamer? Can you give us some insight into why the EU launch of the system has been so long delayed?

Phil Harrison: It was an unfortunate and unavoidable problem caused by the slower-than-anticipated ramp up of the production on the Blue Laser Diode, a key part of the BD drive technology. Although this is now well behind us, we could not predict the production volume with any degree of certainty to launch globally in all markets at the same time back in November 2006. However, we have more than recovered from this situation with what is objectively a very well-executed launch in Europe with a great selection of games on disc and network. Gamers have responded really positively and purchased over 800,000 units already making it the most successful launch in the history of the video games industry in Europe. I accept that is not entirely satisfactory compensation for having to wait, but we were able to reward European gamers with a free copy of Casino Royale on BD when they registered for the PlayStation Network.

9.) 'Public Image' by Gothic_Walrus
People on the internet and in the tech media in general have been raking the PS3 and Sony over the coals, with a noticeable backlash directed towards Sony's PR department. Debacles like Jack Tretton's 'you can't find the PS3 in stores' comment, and 'All You Want For Christmas is a PSP', has left some gamers with the impression that Sony thinks poorly of them. You in particular have taken a lot of fire as one of the main figures connected to the PlayStation 3, and the consensus seems to be that Sony has a lot of work to do to win over the gaming public. I'd like to ask you, then, how is Sony going to go about changing this mindset? Are there any plans for this you'd be able to share with us?

Phil Harrison: I really don't know how to answer that question entirely to your satisfaction, but allow me to try: I don't deny that we've made some mistakes and have been rightly flamed for some of them. We learn, we cringe slightly at the memory of some of them from time to time but we move on. And hopefully we're not stupid enough to repeat them! But I also have to point out that millions of people around the world have bought PS3s and are loving the experience - and frankly they become our advocates and evangelists far more effectively than I could ever be. If we continue to deliver great software, services and experiences to our gamers they'll become even more comfortable in recommending PS3 to their friends and family - that's what builds a loyal fanbase. We absolutely have a lot of work to do but I'm convinced we have the right strategy - and recent announcements like Home and Little Big Planet have resonated very positively with our audiences around the world, including some commentators who had been previously critical of us.

10.) 'Price drop?' by RyanFenton
I understand the strategy of never announcing price drops until they're imminent, but the PS3 is not even on many people's radar at the moment, because of the staggering price. Sony's CEO Howard Stringer has even stated that the price might be too high. Are you even considering price drops on the PS3 hardware?

Phil Harrison: Probably no surprise to hear that we've no plans to drop the price but it's also no surprise to anyone reading this that core to our business plan is growing the installed base of hardware. But price is only one part of the motivation to purchase a system. We need to maintain the high desire for the product through great software, services and support combined with great awareness. I want to make sure we're focused on the best possible gamer and user experience and that will bring PS3 onto more people's radar - to use your expression - much more effectively than simply dropping the price.

Phil Harrison
SCE Worldwide Studios

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I Love Slashdot (5, Funny)

SighKoPath (956085) | more than 7 years ago | (#18814977)

So, I clicked Read More, and was greeted with this:

Nothing for you to see here, move along
It had me laughing for a good ten seconds, especially considering the subject.

Re:I Love Slashdot (2, Insightful)

flitty (981864) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815589)

So, if we can make certain aspects of PS3 open to the independent game development community, we will do our industry a service by providing opportunities for the next generation of creative and technical talent. Now having said all that, we still have to protect the investment and intellectual property rights of the industry so we will always seek the best ways to secure and protect our devices from piracy and unauthorized hacking that damages the business.

Translation: Abandon hope, all ye (independant developers) who enter here!
What a bunch of PR speak about "having an open community" and yet killing it all at the same time.

Re:I Love Slashdot (1)

taracta (217357) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816033)

At least we know that he has some understanding of were we are coming from. COMPUTE! was a great magazine! What Sony needs to realize is that this is not a "want" but a "need" from the independent development community. The PS3 bring totally new technology (the CELL) to the entire development community and people are eager to to exploit its features but a main feature is locked away. The CELL is not enough to satisfy the "need" (if there were dual CELLs maybe :)). Independent developers need access to the GPU too. It's like programming a game on the C64 with no access to the SID chip (or the sprites.) It is just not enough. Sony needs to rectify this situation.

Re:I Love Slashdot - NOT (1)

Prof Kayyos (1070666) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816693)

Hell, I thought it said Paris Hilton -- damn --. Oh well.

Is the PS3 supposed to play games? (3, Interesting)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 7 years ago | (#18814981)

Because the sales pitch is basically, "it plays BluRay discs".

I think you need to get on-target with the message, if indeed, this thing is a video game console.

Re:Is the PS3 supposed to play games? (1)

Chandon Seldon (43083) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815375)

The sales pitch is that it lets you play modern video games with decent graphics!

That's exactly the same as the sales pitch for the XBox 360. Yes, it costs 25% more than the XBox. On the other hand, it has some technical advantages over the Xbox and has different exclusive games. Remember that the blueray disks aren't just for movies - they also allow game developers to have something like five times as much game data as an XBox 360 game can have.

Disclaimer: I don't own a PS3, and I won't buy one until there is an official patch from Sony (not some hack) that allows the graphics system to be accessed by 3rd party operating systems. The platform has amazing potential, but I'm not going to start buying hardware that prevents me from using it for Sony.

Re:Is the PS3 supposed to play games? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815697)

More accurately, it's priced 25-50% more than a console that is itself overpriced.

Re:Is the PS3 supposed to play games? (2, Insightful)

Chandon Seldon (43083) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815897)

Overpriced based on what? What a PS2 or Original XBox costs now? What they cost when they were first released, ignoring inflation?

Consoles have always been expensive when they first came out. These two consoles (PS3 and Xbox360) happen to be the first generation of consoles that supports HDTV resolutions - that's a giant jump from supporting SDTV in terms of computing power. If you consider what a decent TV that takes advantage of that power costs, a couple hundred bucks of console price really doesn't seem like that big a deal.

If you're not interested in high def gaming, fine. Don't buy the currently-high-end consoles. That does mean that you won't be able to get some of the new games - but that's the choice you've made, sorry. Those people who do want to play games with nice graphics on their nice TVs aren't going to stop having an awesome time gaming to feel sorry for you.

I like this guy now. (2, Insightful)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815053)

I don't deny that we've made some mistakes and have been rightly flamed for some of them.


What kind of corporate head uses flame with its internet definition? Fucking awesome.

Re:I like this guy now. (5, Insightful)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815133)

What kind of corporate head uses flame with its internet definition? Fucking awesome.
The kind that's tailoring his responses to appeal to the interview's Internet audience.

Re:I like this guy now. (2, Insightful)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815285)

Yes, but how many corporate heads could even bother to familiarize themselves with the lingo of their target audience? I remain impressed, though you'll get moderated much more favorably than I will around these parts.

Re:I like this guy now. (3, Interesting)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815359)

The guy heads a major tech company, I don't think the "lingo" is all that foreign to him.

These are the same guys who put root kits on audio CDs. I don't like him no matter how many times he refers to the "Web 2.0 blogosphere"

And the PSP and PS3 are, frankly, both dogs.

Re:I like this guy now. (5, Insightful)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815615)

"Yes, but how many corporate heads could even bother to familiarize themselves with the lingo of their target audience?"

The kind with a marketing department the size of Rhode Island. No doubt there were countless focus groups, surveys, polls and statistical aggregations behind the decision to use that one word alone.

Re:I like this guy now. (2, Funny)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815561)

"What kind of corporate head uses flame with its internet definition?"

He's edgy, he's hip, he's "with it," he's using the kind of lingo the kids today are down with!

Far out, man!

Re:I like this guy now. (1)

7Prime (871679) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816073)

Hot diggity!

Re:I like this guy now. (3, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816313)

23 skidoo!

Re:I like this guy now. (2, Funny)

Floritard (1058660) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815655)

flaming - the act of sending or posting messages that are deliberately hostile and insulting, usually in the social context of a discussion board on the Internet

Term officially jumped the shark Friday April 20, @02:43PM.

Re:I like this guy now. (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815845)

Tubular! Radical! Awesome! Reaganomics!

Re:I like this guy now. (1)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817379)

ahahahahahahahaha ohhhh I love you, Robot Chicken

Re:I like this guy now. (2, Insightful)

gral (697468) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816839)

The guy talks about hacking Magazine games on a Commodore 64 and finding out they suck, so he rewrote them. I think he is of a different caliber higher up based on that more than his use of lingo.

Re:I like this guy now. (4, Insightful)

drcagn (715012) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817461)

Congratulations, you fell for the propaganda technique in which the propagandist tries to make you think that you are both alike.

That figures (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815065)

Zonk got to put his own question in.

Evasive (5, Insightful)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815067)

Look at his response to #4. He didn't answer the question at all, he just talked about the good ol' days and snuck in a couple references to piracy. Will homebrew developers be able to access the PS3's 3D hardware "officially" or not? If not, and if someone manages to find a way to access it "unofficially", will Sony release a firmware update to block it or won't they? We still don't know.

Re:Evasive (1)

portrayed (1091091) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815209)

It seems he "unofficially" said that Sony won't attempt to block homebrew gaming. Lets hope so, as I enjoyed fiddling with my PSP

Re:Evasive (2, Insightful)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815237)

I like this bit:

So, if we can make certain aspects of PS3 open to the independent game development community, we will do our industry a service by providing opportunities for the next generation of creative and technical talent.
"If we can..." "Certain aspects..." That's nice and open-ended. Still, as he seems to have some memory of the glimmer of hacker spirit from his C64 days, he knows full well that whatever they can't give us, given enough time and inclination, we can get for ourselves. Should the platform become as successful as he and his bosses hope, we will do so with or without Sony's hand-holding.

Re:Evasive (5, Insightful)

jimstapleton (999106) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815299)

Actually, the answer in that was an implicit "never in hell"

He mentioned a strong desire to protect their investment and IP. Given that money for the system comes from licensing of the games and the movies from their manufacturers, that response amounts to the answer I gave. That is, unless the creators pay royalties to Sony. If they do not pay royalties, then they simply provide less incentive for people to buy products from the companies who do pay said royalties.

Countering the first obvious argument that will probably come up - yes the homebrewed may not cost money, and thus not compete in the players pocketbook, but they do take time to play, and if a player doesn't thing he or she will have enough time for all the games he or she might like to play, some may not be purchased, or may be purchased more warily (say by trying them at a friends house first, and/or a rental at a blockbuster). If they had more time, they might buy a game tested, that they wouldn't with less time.

Re:Evasive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815659)

The joke being that Linux has near zero percentage of the gaming market now, so linux on the PS3 will be significantly less. Just what are they afraid of?

Re:Evasive (1)

jimstapleton (999106) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815785)

That point is so much more accurate than you may realize.

So much gaming is done through MS, via Windows or XBox360...

By providing GPU access, even in binary form, to the PS3/Linux system... They are taking a cheap and simple pot-shot at MS that has the potential to be quite effective.

Re:Evasive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815385)

Blind agree. I haven't seen this much spinning since kindergarden when the class learned what dreidels were...

Re:Evasive (1)

beef623 (998368) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815499)

That's funny, I read it as "Sure, I even encourage it, but we want to protect our IP so you'll have to figure out how for yourself."

Re:Evasive (1)

eln (21727) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815521)

I believe he was grouping people that would access the hardware "unofficially" in with the illegal hackers that he "excluded" from his answer.

Re:Evasive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815701)

of course he answered the question. you just dont realize that his answer is manager-speak for "no - go F-off and die"

Re:Evasive (1)

twistedsymphony (956982) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815719)

The response to the first question was fantastic, and dare I say after question 2 I gained a shred of respect back for 'ol Philly. The Blu-Ray question he started honestly and ended up with a sales pitch by the end and it was back to the old PR side stepping from then on out with Mr Harrison taking on the role of Michael Flatly.

On one hand it's aggravating not being able to get a straight answer out of these guys. We know he's capable of speaking honestly after reading the first couple of questions. On the other hand, what did we expect? If he really felt that Blu-Ray was a bad idea or that homebrew should be supported do you really think he'd speak his mind on the issues considering his position within Sony?

Re:Evasive (1)

kinglink (195330) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816511)

Considering that even developers have to jump through hoops to directly access the hardware of a PS3, this will likely be considered illegal access and blocked off.

The biggest secret that Sony has is how little support developers get (hell Early versions of the PS2 only allowed printf debugging, attaching to process didn't even seem to work.)

Re:Evasive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18817267)

I doubt it will ever be accessible. Its nothing to do with piracy: if homebrewers could access the GPU they could potentially be making games that rival commercial ones (and maybe even distribute them on live cds) without paying royalties, that is all there is to it.

As for accessing it 'unofficially' this is pretty much impossible - the hyper-visor is physically isolated - there is no software means to over-ride it - you are its bitch.

Re:Evasive (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18818209)

Not to mention, the Yaroze project was a total fucking flop in the United States. Here's why:

* It cost a little under US$1000 for someone to get the kit (yeah, because amateur developers are rich -- hahahaha),
* Despite there being no region lockout on the black Yaroze units, there was efforts near the end of the project to introduce that ""feature"",
* You were limited to 1MByte of space to play with and absolutely nothing more,
* You had to use Sony's Yaroze-specific API (which many people tried to bust out of, because it was retarded (both in the literal and slang sense of the word) and unnecessary),
* You were limited to Sony-provided development tools (which were useless in most cases, and downright broken in others),
* Documentation was, to put it lightly, fucking atrocious,
* You could not share or interact with other Yaroze members who were in different countries; Japan could only talk to Japan, and US could only talk to US. Net "Cold War" Yaroze...

Most hardcore amateur developers I knew at the time went out and illegally obtained blue PSX units (which were actual development units being sold on the black market). I knew of one guy who went to E3 solely to steal a blue PSX unit (for development, not resale). Aforementioned fellow, and more than a handful of other developers ended up working at gaming companies around the globe. No one I know of gained ANYTHING from the Yaroze project, because the environment made development worthless -- well, except for Chris Chadwick.

Thus, I cannot believe the present-day CEO would even bother bringing up the Yaroze project. He'd have been better off stating that the Yaroze project was a failure because Sony was too paranoid of its competitors and of its users. Sony's the same way with other departments too; it's not limited to their PS3 group. Look at Aibo -- amateur hobbyists finding ways to get Aibo to do things by bypassing the API and accomplishing goals they couldn't due to Sony's ignorance. Sony, of course, went apeshit about it. AMERICA, FUCK YEAH, GONNA SUE EVERYONE AND EVERYTHING YEAH!!!

So what it is going to take for large companies to actually embrace amateur developers and stop worrying about piracy? I swear, every time there's interest in such things, corporate legal or IP fucks come along and destroy it for fear of piracy. Piracy is going to happen no matter what -- limiting your development platform because of it makes no sense. Give people what they pay for, and imprison anyone who breaks the law. Otherwise, let developers do what they do best: use their minds.

Interesting (4, Insightful)

Jarjarthejedi (996957) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815083)

I liked most of it but I must object to one statement.

"My personal philosophy is to make the entertainment experience of videogames available to everyone. I want to see the audience of people who play videogames, of any type, on any device, include practically anyone on the planet."

If that was truely his guiding principle the PS3 would not cost more than 50% (Min) of gamers can afford. It's also pretty much an exact copy of Nintendo's goal. Something tells me this principle is relatively new...say it began about when the 4 millianth Wii sold...

Other than that an interesting interview.

Re:Interesting (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815159)


Was that an ad for the PS3 I saw last night with the blue-haired granny gaming it up in the living room with those two nice Japanese fellows?

Seems like they said something along the lines of Wii would like to play...

Oh well, must have been Sony, because exclusivity has NEVER been part of their mission.

Re:Interesting (1)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817499)

You realize that they haven't discontinued the PS2, and that it costs less than a Wii, right?

Re:Interesting (1)

Suzumushi (907838) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817769)

You realize that the Gamecube (which is the same generation as the PS2) also costs less than a Wii right?

Furthermore, a quick look at the list of games being developed for the PS2 shows that it is already a dead system anyway. Sony priced themselves out of the market, and for years wankers at the SCEA have been sabotaging their own market share by blocking releases of Japanese games in the US. Sony is reaping what they sowed.

Less PR Questions (1)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815241)

The first few questions were really great, we actually got to hear the real Phil Harrison in those answers as opposed to the PR/spin guy in the rest where we learned nothing new. I know we all like to rag on Sony but it's not like we're going to trap Phil in some mind-boggingly tricky question where he's forced to admit Sony's ultimate failure. He does this for a living. Anyways, decent interview and it's interesting to see how this all played out.

Amazing! (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815325)

I did a within-page search for the word "rootkit" and it wasn't there. I have two questions for Mr. Harrison: 1, how can you sleep at night knowing you work for a company evil enough to put rootkits on music CDs, and 2, how in the world could I possibly trust Sony after they destroyed my PC?

Campus Employment Spam: +1, Spamful (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815331)


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mirth (0, Offtopic)

aschoeff (864154) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815351)

A first glance I read the headline as: "Phil Spector Answers Your Questions."

My thought was "Wow, I didn't know Slashdotters were especially interested in a celebrity murder case!"

Re:mirth (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815495)

Warren's brother killed somebody?

Wehn will Sony support.... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815365)

Two-Finger Scrolling For (Some) Pre-2005 Anuses, like Apple?

Fsck Linux (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815411)

So basically he avoids all the important questions surrounding homebrew and giving us access to RSX to improve the shitty video performance Linux suffers.

Pathetic. Utterly pathetic. Full of shit again, aren't you Sony.

Which planet is he on? (5, Insightful)

Andy_R (114137) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815419)

"the most successful launch in the history of the video games industry in Europe"

Hang on, Sony missed Christmas, gave us hobbled backwards compatibility and priced the thing so you can't get a console and a game for less than $900 here. Stores are full of people queueing for the Wii and ignoring stacks of unsold PS3s. I'd hate to see this guy's idea of an unsucessful launch!

Re:Which planet is he on? (1)

Floritard (1058660) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815795)

Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies! Rivers and seas boiling! Forty years of darkness, Earthquakes, volcanoes! The dead rising from the grave! Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together - mass hysteria!

Re:Which planet is he on? (2, Insightful)

Xest (935314) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815839)

He was basing his comment on the number of units sold. The question is of course, whether units sold automatically infers most successful launch ever. If they sold the 800,000 units because they had enough units available to fulfil demand due to them delaying the Euro launch by 5 months then don't sell hardly anymore units over the next few months, whilst the competitor only sells 400,000 at launch as that's all they could produce in time but sells another 1million over the next few months then I'd say their definition of best launch is irrelevant - it's the playing out of the first 6 to 12 months after launch that really matter I'd say.

Certainly if you defined "best launch" by attendees and purchases at launch parties then Sony haven't earnt that title for the PS3, it was a flop in that respect. Whilst Sony has used the first 2 weeks as their measure of time for judging best launch I'd bet that the Wii/360 would claim this title back if you used say, the first 6 hours or perhaps even first few days as the measure of time for judging it instead.

Re:Which planet is he on? (2, Interesting)

Penguin's Advocate (126803) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815851)

"Hang on, Sony missed Christmas, gave us hobbled backwards compatibility and priced the thing so you can't get a console and a game for less than $900 here. Stores are full of people queueing for the Wii and ignoring stacks of unsold PS3s."

Yes...and despite that, they still sold more in the first two days than the Wii or the 360 did in their respective first months. Despite all that was wrong with the launch, they still sold more. That is far more successful than I think they had any right to even hope for. "Selling more" is a far more meaningful success than "perceived internet public opinion." As demonstrated by Snakes on a Plane, all the talk on the internet can mean next to nothing in reality.

Re:Which planet is he on? (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817757)

The backwards compatibility was better than the xbox360's is NOW...

Hobbled?

No Phil, I do care. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18815427)

Phil Harrison: [snip]I really don't believe gamers mind who makes the game [snip] So my main "concern" is to make sure those games are absolutely the best they can be.

no phil, you're wrong. i *do* care who makes the game. i know from previous experience that game titles from a certain vendor (*cough* ea *cough*) are probably dressed up rehashes. i know that a game that has rockstar's logo on it could be a clunker, but more-than-likely is going to be worth my money. so yes, phil, while i share your "main concern" that the game is the best, i immediately begin my purchasing decisions based on WHO MADE THE FUCKING GAME.

Re:No Phil, I do care. (1)

laffer1 (701823) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815743)

That is very true. There are games from some companies that I automatically buy just because I know it will be a good game. Blizzard games come to mind. id games up to Doom 3 are also in there. There are many in the console market as well.

For most people, the lack of a price drop is the most significant problem. I don't own a single sony console, but I'm not impressed with the xbox 360's poor quality*. I'd consider buying a PS3 as a second console after the wii I can't find. If nothing else, its a blueray player. I won't pay $600 for it.

*The xbox360 breaks often. Everytime I'm in a game store, someone wants to get theirs repaired. All of them have been hard drive models, but that is what I would buy.

Re:No Phil, I do care. (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816345)

My Xbox 360 broke, but it wasn't the HD that went bad. It was some "general hardware error." So I called them, they told me to send it no question asked, and sent me a working one back within a week. Very good service, and I just played some PC and PS2 in the meantime. So, yes, quality is not so great as far as durability goes, but the customer service mitigates that dramatically.

Re:No Phil, I do care. (0, Troll)

^_^x (178540) | more than 7 years ago | (#18818025)

I own a PSX, PS2, and PSP, as well as all sorts of Sony gear (receiver, camera, headphones...)
But even then, the PS3 is way too expensive and at this point, I would only get Motorstorm, and Ninja Gaiden when it comes out.

The 360... I'd get one for $20. I'd pay more, but most owners I know are at least on their THIRD units! Frankly, I'm afraid to even put one in my home for fear it'd burst into flame like the first XBox... If they can make it reliable, then even I might get one. Not before then.

The Wii... eh. If I should ever happen to see one in any store anywhere, I hope there are a few original games for it by then.

I'm mostly a console gamer, but for now I'm still enjoying the "last gen" PS2/Gamecube/Dreamcast and my brand new gaming PC. Looking at the current consoles just makes me sad so far...

The solution to a high price is... more features? (3, Interesting)

fruitbane (454488) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815641)

There's a reason that, in the car market, Hyundai and BMW co-exist. Some people want a raging hormone car and some people want something they can afford that gets them comfortably from point A to point B. Phil Harrison's claim that "making the PS3" more desirable does not necessarily involve dropping price really fails to address the question directed at him. There are many people who can't afford the BMW of gaming systems and who are now settling for the Hyundais and Hondas of gaming because of that. Offering these people more "reasons" to buy a PS3 is not going to suddenly supplement their income and make such a high-priced machine worth the smack to incoming cash flow. By not having a true Hyundai model PS3, many potential gamers are locked out of the market because food, the electric bill, and gas to drive to work are more important than playing EXPENSIVE video games.

Given the unique experience offered by the Wii and the more reasonably-priced Xbox360, I think Sony has made a bad move. There's a reason BMWs are not the most prevalent cars on the road, and I suspect it's the same reason the PS3 is not likely to be the most prevalent game console in homes.

failed again! (1)

Skadet (528657) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817063)

Yet another failed car analogy. BMW had 66.6 Billion [wikipedia.org] USD in revenue in 2006.
Hyundai had 29.5 Billion [wikipedia.org] USD in revenue.

So, bottom line, BMW might move fewer units, but they make more money.

Re:failed again! (1)

Suzumushi (907838) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817893)

Not necessarily. BMW's cost a lot more than a Hyundai does, so naturally their revenue would be higher. However, BMW's expenses are also a lot higher I would imagine. Revenue is not profit.

I'd also rather compare BMW to Toyota which has revenue in the trillions or Honda which has revenue around 86 billion...Hell just combine the two.

It also doesn't change the fact that most people driving BMW's are pompous jerks. ;-P

Price (2, Insightful)

FatherOfONe (515801) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815803)

The only real issue with the PS3 over the 360 and Wii is price. If the system was $400 then is would sell a ton more systems and Sony appears to be aware of this. They have dropped the price twice in Japan and will probably do it here in the U.S. late this fall. His response pretty much says it all when he didn't flat out deny a price drop this year.

The real question is if Nintendo can get their act together and sell over 15 million this year. If Nintendo could have met demand; or if they could meet demand they could bury both Sony and Microsoft in this race. Every day that goes by, HDTVs go down in price and more great games come out for the 360 and PS3 AND the chance of a price drop to the PS3 becomes more of a reality.

Xbox 360 - 9.5 million consoles sold (Channel stuffed big time so numbers will remain flat, majority of games are FPS, no standard hard drive, HD-DVD add on never used for games, no )

Nintendo Wii - 6.5 million consoles sold (Supply constrained, very limited game selection, poor 3rd party support, poor online support, weakest hardware platform)

PS3 - 3 million sold (Priced WAY too high, limited game selection, slowly growing online support, no kids games)

Re:Price (1)

Xymor (943922) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816153)

Even risking sounding like a fanboy, you missed poor hardware quality for the 360(rings of death ahoy) and linux support for the ps3.

Re:Price (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18816325)

Linux support may or maynot prove to be an asset in the future.
However, their strategy to allow any standard hdd and bluetooth headsets is certainly benefical for consumers.

Re:Price (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18816417)

You also fail to mention that the 360 has been out a lot longer and has only sold 9.5 million. A lot has to do with the types of games available, the 360 just has shooters, shooters and more shooters with a user base that is comprised mostly of teenagers.

Re:Price (1)

OSS_ilation (922367) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816651)

I'd argue that the lack of exclusives (or dwindling list anyway) is a much bigger reason than price. People bought iPod when they were $500, so price really wasn't a factor there, right?

In the gaming industry GAMES drive sales in the long run, and so far Sony has not made any kind of effort showing gamers how this system is any different than the 360 other than Blu-Ray -- a technology that, I may add, no one actually asked for to begin with. What they asked for was a gaming console with exclusive titles that warranted the lofty buy-in price. Sony has also shown that it's answer to Nintendo is to introduce a motion control PS2 controller 10 weeks before Warhawk developers are set to showcase their wares at E3.

Playing catchup to a GameCube and TELLING consumers what's good for them (Second Life Sony Home, with advertisements!), instead of showing them a product they really want or need and letting them decide for themselves is a massive failure in the making.

The PS2 is still selling admirably; maybe Sony should have bolted a Blu-Ray drive onto that.

Re:Price (2, Insightful)

spideyct (250045) | more than 7 years ago | (#18818157)

Majority of games are FPS? Other than Call of Duty 2/3, what popular game is an FPS?

The games I've most enjoyed on my Xbox 360: Geometry Wars, Gears of War, Crackdown, Viva Pinata, Texas Hold 'em, and Guitar Hero 2. Neither of which is an FPS. In fact, I think thats a pretty varied list of game genres. I'll agree that the library of good games doesn't go much deeper than the ones I listed, but thats a different criticism.

And HD-DVD add-on never used for games? Why is that a criticism? "This game would be SO much more fun if the disc was spinning in THAT drive instead of THIS drive". It might be a valid argument if games were running into limitations on the current drive, which other platforms were taking advantage of.

I'll agree, the 360 deserves a list of drawbacks (too loud?) - just not this list.

Size Matters (1)

Ikyaat (764422) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815855)

"I think that PlayStation 3 is a masterpience of design and technology - it packs a huge amount of performance into an amazingly small (and quiet) box."

The PS3 is ginormous! When I first saw it I was shocked and amazed at how huge it was. I didnt like the original Xbox because I thought it was overly large and I was disapointed with the design of the PS3. I was hoping they would try for first generation PS2 size or smaller. Size matters a lot and for expensive electronics I want sleek and small, not Huge.

I mean as technology gets better it doesnt have to get larger, RAM, Video Cards, and Hard Drives get better and better and remain relatively the same size if not smaller.

How many have actually seen/used a PS3? (1)

enochweedy (1081949) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815873)

I see a lot of negative comments on /. regarding the PS3, and I was inlcined to agree with most of the complaints (specifically price). Then I had the opportunity to really play with one, and the next major purchase that I make is going to be a PS3. I love the GUI, I love the graphics (and no, I am not a graphics whore, but it does add to the level of enjoyment one gets from a game) on Resistance: Fall of Man, NFS Carbon, etc etc. I love not having to pay money to Sony so I can frag fools online, unlike the 60$ per year that I have to give MSFT. Yay, more money to Microsoft. The only thing that I hate is the price of the games, but I pay that no matter which system I go with. Am I going to get rid of my 360? No, absolutely not. It may look like I am at my desk working, er, posting on /. but I am actually in line to buy Halo 3. Also, Clive Barker's new one, Jericho, coming out around the same time.

Re:How many have actually seen/used a PS3? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18816579)

Played one in a Sony store out here in LA. I was not at all impressed.

Re:How many have actually seen/used a PS3? (1)

DarkJC (810888) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817317)

I agree completely. The problem with the PS3 is that the only way you can truly see if it's worth it is to sit down with it in your home and check it out. Once you do that, I would say the majority is going to come out liking the system very much. However, at the moment that's impossible. The only way to try it out is at a store in a shitty hotbox kiosk where the system has no airflow, overheats, has old crappy builds of games, etc etc.

I know 3 friends who have PS3s, and we all love them. It's not like we got together and said "Uh oh we hate this system but spent $600 on it so lets convince ourselves we love it," it really is quite nice. One of them also has a Wii, and of course he loves that too. It just makes me laugh when I read all this hate on the PS3 online and figure that the majority of the people hating on the console are people who've never really tried one.

This interview is crap, sorry (5, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#18815965)

It's nothing reflecting on slashdot or the users. Hell, I even had a question accepted this time, so it's not even sour grapes!

The reason it's crap is because of the responses, which were obviously all sanitized by the legal department (or are all well-informed by the standards from legal.)

SOME of the answers are good. I don't want to take that away from this interview. The answer to #1 is great. #2 is sort of rambling, but at least it seems like an honest answer. But when we get to #3 (my question) :) then it goes to hell. Every word of the answer to #3 is pure marketing speak. This is not really anything different from what I expected - mostly my goal in authoring that question was to make him aware that we realize where Sony has fallen directly on its face.

But let's look at precisely why his answers are disingenuous, shall we?

"The Cell processor is wildly powerful and developers are now beginning to understand what that means for game design." Translation: The cell processor is horribly complicated to code for, and our internal developers are just now beginning to understand how to get a useful portion of that power out of it. We didn't learn anything from the stupid processor we put into the PS2."

"There is no denying we had some start-up challenges with Blu-ray at the beginning but that is the price you pay for leading edge technology. Thankfully, those challenges are behind us and I stand firmly by the decision to include BD-ROM as the physical media format." Translation: The lack of availability of blue lasers looked like it was going to be a real problem, but those problems never materialized because people didn't actually want to buy all the consoles we could produce, unlike the Wii.

"Next generation game design demands the capacity of Blu-ray." Translation: I am a lying sack of shit, since Microsoft is successfully outselling us with next-generation games on DVD.

[...] "the fact that is helps kick-start BD as the next generation movie format is a bonus for all of us, players and game-makers." Translation: I want you to believe that Blu-Ray's dominance would be good for the consumer, so I will spout this nonsensical drivel.

That's right, it's all lies and bullshit. I didn't quote a couple of sentences, because they were obvious statements that didn't need to be made to a technical audience.

Let's move on to #4.

"We were one of the first companies to recognize this in 1996 with Net Yaroze on PS1" ...which was too expensive for nearly any of their users to afford.

"It's a vital, crucial aspect of the future growth of our industry and links well to the subtext of my earlier answers." Which makes it difficult to imagine why Sony locks out so much functionality of their consoles from Linux users, if homebrew is so important.

"Now having said all that, we still have to protect the investment and intellectual property rights of the industry so we will always seek the best ways to secure and protect our devices from piracy and unauthorized hacking that damages the business." Translation: Having said all that, it is all bullshit because we will load you down with hypervisor restrictions and bullshit DRM that prevents you in some cases from exercising your legal rights and in others simply prevents you from utilizing all of the functionality of the machine.

#5 we can skip. Everyone knows Sony is going to be hurting bad because FFXIII isn't going to be PS3-exclusive, and that squeenix is hardly the only group of guys telling them to stick their exclusivity contract up their arrogant asses.

#6 proves that he is a dumbass as if we needed any further evidence, since he doesn't recognize the difference between vibration feedback and force feedback.

#7 is not very interesting IMO, hardly anyone bought the 20GB model to begin with.

In his answer to #8 he utterly ignores the fact that they're paying twice in Europe what we are paying in Japan and the US. Which of course, he has to, because there's no way to not look like an asshole when you're saying that people are being charged more for no reason whatsoever other than Sony thinking they will pay.

I do want to address point #7 in one other way: "However, we have more than recovered from this situation with what is objectively a very well-executed launch in Europe with a great selection of games on disc and network." What? Well-executed? There were more members of the press on their little launch party boat than there were gamers, which shows that they care not about gamers, but about their image. And sales in the second week dropped over 80%. That is not a well-executed launch. That is a lie.

#9 can be summarized as "We are evil bastards, but people keep buying our shit, so we have no motivation to ever change."

#10 looks like fun.

"Probably no surprise to hear that we've no plans to drop the price but it's also no surprise to anyone reading this that core to our business plan is growing the installed base of hardware." Translation: we don't announce price drops - it was indeed a stupid question. We don't plan to drop the price so we can sell more hardware, but we would like to sell more hardware -- you figure that one out for yourself.

"But price is only one part of the motivation to purchase a system. We need to maintain the high desire for the product through great software, services and support combined with great awareness." If he continued this sentence honestly it would have gone something like "And it would be great if you weren't aware that we as a corporation have distributed rootkits, sued your favorite web retailer into oblivion, and done more to further the cause of DRM than the next three companies combined (not counting Microsoft, to be fair.)"

And what? Maintain the high desire for the product? Dude, there never was high desire for the product. You guys fucking blew it. That's why there's been piles of PS3s sitting on the shelves.

This guy is paid to lie. I guess next time I shouldn't even bother reading.

Re:This interview is crap, sorry (1)

Last_Available_Usern (756093) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816657)

Quote: Translation: Having said all that, it is all bullshit because we will load you down with hypervisor restrictions and bullshit DRM that prevents you in some cases from exercising your legal rights and in others simply prevents you from utilizing all of the functionality of the machine. --- Ya know, when I bought my alarm clock, no where in the documentation did it state I would be able to rip apart it's innards and utilize whatever components I wanted. It said it would keep time, and beep when I told it to beep. You didn't pay for a development platform, you paid for a game console. If you feel you were mislead in any way then you should review the countless commercials and web ads that say differently. If you are able at some time to utilize it for those purposes, then that's great, but you have no basis for being angry at the potential lack of that ability.

Re:This interview is crap, sorry (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816993)

You didn't pay for a development platform, you paid for a game console.

First of all, I didn't pay for shit. Sony is not getting any of my money if I can help it. They are the enemy of freedom-loving consumers everywhere and to patronize them is to be their ally.

Second of all, people who paid for the PS3 did pay for a development platform, because the ability to run Linux on the system was an advertised selling point, listed on the official PS3 website, and has been part of the buzz since long before the console was released. So you are plainly and simply wrong about this point. End of story. Do not try to argue, because you are wrong.

If they had advertised the linux support as being castrated, you might back a backup point there. But they didn't, so you simply do not know what you are talking about.

I also specifically discussed that subject in light of what he had said, specifically because to say those things while the console's Linux functionality is castrated the way it is... well, that's simply hypocritical.

Come back when you know what you're talking about, and have a point.

Re:This interview is crap, sorry (1)

Fex303 (557896) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817707)

Ya know, when I bought my alarm clock, no where in the documentation did it state I would be able to rip apart it's innards and utilize whatever components I wanted. It said it would keep time, and beep when I told it to beep.

Yes, but they didn't design the damn thing so that you couldn't rip it apart either. If you wanted to get at its innards, you'd just need a screwdriver. Perhaps you should stick to car metaphors.

Re:This interview is crap, sorry (1)

king-manic (409855) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817819)

"Next generation game design demands the capacity of Blu-ray." Translation: I am a lying sack of shit, since Microsoft is successfully outselling us with next-generation games on DVD.

This one I disagree with you on. While Developers aren't demanding the extra space it does make their lives easier. Most games go through a phase where they need to shrik their assets down to size to fit the media. High res textures, uncompressed audio, multiple channels, bigger models, bump maps, normal maps, lighting maps, The increasingly less common FMV, The increasingly more common NPC audio, etc... Most developers will tell you before the shrikage games are easily 10-30 gigs. They shrink it by lowering texture resolution dropping stuff, compressing stuff etc...

Mocking C64!?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18816111)

Actually, C64 said "Ready." with a period, not a question mark. Supposedly meaning "I'm ready with the previous task and ready to accept more commands."

Also, FWIW PS3 _is_ rather homebrew-friendly. It's the only console you can install linux on, with vendor-supported mechanisms. There's still possibility that they might in the future implement hardware accelerated OpenGL for PS3/Linux.

He didn't really answer my question (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816169)

Phil's reply to my question was somewhat avoidant... but I suppose that's to be expected. PS3 losing exclusives is a result of there being a relatively small number of PS3s out there (therefore a small potential audience for any title, however amazing). So if publishers want to even break even on a game, they currently need to go multiplatform to maximize their audience. Games are expensive nowadays, dev teams are bigger than ever and game devs command high-enough salaries.

Any PS3 Fans here? (2, Interesting)

Hemogoblin (982564) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816199)

But I also have to point out that millions of people around the world have bought PS3s and are loving the experience - and frankly they become our advocates and evangelists far more effectively than I could ever be.
Are there any PS3 owners here that would like to promote the system? I'm genuinely curious to see if there are people satisfied with their purchase and are excited enough to promote it.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18816641)

I love my PS3! My entire experience has been great and I can't wait to see where it will go from here. As far as the price goes - the 360 will cost you the same to get the same included items if you can get them at all. The Wii is always going to cost less but it is a last generation console. The Wii is already at the finish line - there is no where for it to go. I have played all three and the PS3 is the only one I can see playing two years from now.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (1)

Hemogoblin (982564) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816887)

What exactly is it that you enjoy about it and use it for? That is, what types of games do you play, do you watch movies, do you download stuff etc?

Yeah. I like my PS3. (1)

maynard (3337) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817087)

I have to say, as one of the folks who got a question put to Mr. Harrison that he didn't answer squat. But - I must say - the PS3 is an amazing HD player. I absolutely love watching movies with the thing. OTOH: I also have a 360, and the games are on the 360 at the moment.

*shrug*

PS3 owner, reporting in (1)

Bugs42 (788576) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817561)

I've got a PS3, bought it around 4 months ago, and I'm really happy with it. There's a couple of really good games out there that I'm enjoying.

Resistance: Fall of Man - totally awesome, especially co-op, and the some of the weapons are really damn fun.

Blazing Angels - the motion-sensitive controls actually work pretty damn well.

Armored Core 4 - I've only downloaded the demo, but it's just the kind of explosive, giant-robot-action I love.

Flow - great fun just to kick back and relax with. It truly does flow, just like they promised.

Downloadable PS1 games for the PSP - kick ass. My only gripe here is that I have to play 'em on my PSP and not on the 3.

Also, I never had a PS2 so I'm enjoying all the last-gen games from that console that I missed (Final Fantasy XII, Front Mission 4, Katamari Damacy, Red Dead Revolver, to name just a few).

Sadly, I haven't watched any Blu-Ray movies yet, so I can't comment on that feature of the machine.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (4, Informative)

DarkJC (810888) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817613)

I'm a North American launch owner. Admittedly my initial reason for buying the console was MGS4. I'm a total fanboy for that series, so there was no doubt in my mind that I was going to be getting a PS3.

That said, I have no buyers remorse. I really do love it. I think the reason you don't see a huge amount of PS3 supporters here is not only because there still aren't a ton of systems out there, but because being Slashdot most likely they'll get flamed to hell or called retards for spending $600 on a game console etc etc.

To give you an idea of how I use it, I currently have Resistance, Virtua Fighter 5, and Motorstorm. Resistance was a blast, and while I have no idea how it stands up to Gears (and it's definitely not a Halo killer) it still was great fun, especially with the imaginative weapons Insomniac loves putting in all their games. VF5 is great, lack of online play slightly disappointing but to be expected due to the nature of the fighting engine. Motorstorm I think was the title that most shocked me. I had been looking forward to it for quite a while after the demo but near release the reviews game out and it got relatively mediocre reviews, mainly because of the lack of game modes. So..I held back on my purchase for quite a while but ever since picking it up I'm glad I did. Not only are the graphics amazing, but the gameplay never ceases to be just downright fun, even with the lack of modes like single race and time trial.

I'd also like to mention my thoughts on the PSN. Having very briefly used XBox Live I don't feel I'm qualified to give a comparison between the two, but my experience has overall been very nice. My only complaint is that Resistance didn't integrate it's buddy list with the PSN, something that my other online title, Motorstorm, does very nicely. However, both games are lag free, and Resistance has awesome matchmaking, clan support, and all that jazz built in. I always hear people with XBL touting those features and I just thought I'd point out that we too are enjoying them. As for the Playstation Store, they could use some fatter download pipes, but other than that it's decent. I definitely think the XBLA interface is much nicer though. The PS Store is basically a webpage, and can be sluggish.

I did get Casino Royale to check out Blu-ray, and I was quite impressed. Not impressed enough to go and rebuy old DVDs though, however new purchases will probably be in Blu-ray if available. The picture quality is quite awesome, I just wish my receiver was newer so I could take advantage of the uncompressed LPCM 5.1 audio over HDMI. Oh, and I also convert a bunch of shows I download into a PS3 suitable format and transfer them over to watch them on the big screen.

Overall it's a pretty great experience. I always had plans to get an XBox360 sometime down the line, but what I'm getting now from the PS3 will tide me over until there are a bunch of titles that interest me on the 360 (and maybe a price drop). With Heavenly Sword looking like it's shaping up to be a great game, Lair looking promising (although I'm not completely convinced yet) and some blockbuster hits coming at the end of this year I'm pretty excited. Honestly, I hope this doesn't sound too much like some PR zombie taking advantage of the situation, because I'm not. It's the first time I've really got into about how much I enjoy the experience in hopes of shedding some light on the parts of the PS3 that aren't that bad (namely everything but the price ;)

Yep. (1)

Intellectual Elitist (706889) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817767)

I'm enjoying my PS3 quite a bit, and if it weren't for so many developers targeting 720p without providing 1080i support (I have a 1080i-only TV), I'd have very little to complain about.

Pros:
First to get Virtua Fighter 5
No extra fees for online gaming
Blu-Ray movie playback (it's very difficult to go back to DVDs now)
Hard drive in every unit
Most comfortable next-gen controller
PS1 and PS2 backward compatibility

Cons:
No built-in 720p upscaling for 1080i-only TVs
No rumble (though this will be changing soon)
No online play for Virtua Tennis 3
Pricey

Once they get rumble into the Sixaxis and some marquee exclusives come out later in the year, the PS3 should be on much more solid footing.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18817833)

I love my PS3. Ironically, most of why I love it is that I have a massive PS1/2 library and the games load much faster and I don't have to hunt for my damn memory cards anymore. I uploaded em all once, and now life is great, I can switch back and forth easily, and the backcompat is perfect. (Note: I did buy one of the pre-Euro launch ones, so I can't speak for that)

I only actually own Resistance (a great game, I liked it better than Gears but lack of online coop angers me, so Gears wins there) as a PS3 game, but I've logged about 200 hours playing old games that just had hideous load times and they're much more bearable now. Oh, I suppose fl0w counts too, which is very weird but fun.

I'm excited at some of the future games (Lair for example), the box is quieter than the Xbox 360, the online services are nice considering what I'm paying for them, and if my friends were rich enough, I'd certainly promote the system to all of them.

I may be in that rare segment of people that's willing to pay $600 on future promise and a great improvement on the library I already play, but people upgrade their PCs all the time, so I can't be _that_ far off. I just bought it as an expectation that it'd improve what I already do, and it does. And someday later in the mysterious future, I'm imagining there'll be more games I want to play.

To be fair, I greatly enjoy my Xbox-360 (though not as much as I would if it were actually backwards compatible, this is the main reason it took me a year to buy one) and have a lot more games for it, and I might enjoy my Wii if my girlfriend hadn't banned me from playing anything on it until she finished Zelda. I've got em all, and I like em all (if only from what I've seen from the Wii!). I hope they all succeed, competition is good.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (1)

thecheatah (977630) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817839)

I have a wii and a ps3.

I dont understand how I am suppose to have fun with the wii. (have wii play, i love golf and zelda i cant adapt to the controls I hate writing with a pen/pencil and i hate drawing so i hate swinging the remote)

But the ps3 is something I get.

I guess I am too old to learn new things.

PS3 was well worth the $600. I am still iffy about the wii.

I know my view of video games isnt popular, but it is still AN opinion.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (1)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817855)

I own a PS3. I've had it for a few weeks. I've had fun playing Elder Scrolls: Obsidian and Motor Storm. Blast Factor is also fun, though I doubt it'll have much longevity. It was only $5.99, though I've also been working my way through the original God of War. (I never owned a PS2.) I have been, at the moment, "loving in" in that it's taken up all my gaming time. (Though that's partially because my wife monopolizes "Puzzle Quest" when I'm home.)

I bought it because it's the first console I could get hooked up to my LCD. (Mainly, I'm sick of playing the PC-gamer upgrade cycle and sick of bug-ridden PC games and the shitty, bug-ridden copy protection they use.) I thought about a Wii, and may still pick one up, but honestly the sort of games it has don't excite me.

I didn't even consider an XBox, because I refuse to put any money towards Microsoft's efforts to expand their monopolistic bullshit beyond the PC. Honestly, I'm surprised a slashdotter can admit buying an XBox without holding their head in shame.

Beyond that..."excited enough to promote it" usually means "fanboy". Fuck that. I have fun...you can buy whatever console you want and as such, am completely uninterested in arguments about which console is "better". I stopped doing that sort of shit back in the "Apple ][ vs c64" days.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (1)

king-manic (409855) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817905)

The system is a great DVD player, a Good blu-ray player. Has a lot of options I find neat and so far I have 3 games for it. 2 are a lot of fun 1 was given to me because my friend was using the game as a coaster (genji). PS1 games are coming online which rocks and I use it as a media center for my HD TV. It's a pretty nice machine. It was worth it for me. The machine is a good one and well made. There aren't the same "disc read error" problems that plagued the launch PS2/Xbox/360.

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (1)

cxreg (44671) | more than 7 years ago | (#18818315)

Being an early adopter to any new game system is frustrating. Even Wii, with all the hype, is suffering badly from a shortage of new games.

Motorstorm is fantastic, and Oblivion is pretty neat, but I spend more time playing PS2 games than PS3 ones for now. GTA really is the one game I'm waiting most for.

The OS is ok, but it definitely gives the feeling of a work in progress. I have noticed that they don't announce everything that goes into the updates, for example, their Javascript and CSS support in the built-in web browser improved during one of the updates and I heard nary a peep about it anywhere. Sort of a strange take on underpromise/overdeliver, but I'll take it.

Linux works well enough on it, but I've been running Folding when I'm not gaming, so I don't really have a strong opinion about that. Maybe if someone gets a Cell accelerated Mesa going, I'll actually boot it more often.

Oh, and he's right about the noise. As in, there is none. At all.

I've only watched one Blu-ray movie, which was 5th Element, known to be a particularly bad example, so I can't say much about that aspect.

It's really quite an impressive machine, if a little on the big and heavy side. Once the 3rd parties start to deliver, it'll be much more sensible a purchase. I'm just a sucker for new toys :)

Re:Any PS3 Fans here? (1)

Kohath (38547) | more than 7 years ago | (#18818525)

I like mine. I wish I had more time to play games and watch movies.

I have no complaints about the capabilities or operation of the system. It needs more great games and a better online store that sells video though.

I think I clearly made the right choice in buying it. It's still the best choice for HD movies at a semi-reasonable cost.

Eh... fair enough.... (1)

7Prime (871679) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816391)

Not really. Using my question (#2) as a way of painting yourself as the Henry Ford-style, "product for THE PEOPLE", gaming CEO will only get you so far when you fail to price the product at a level that THE PEOPLE can afford.

They're stuck. They have the opportunity to present themselves as the BMW of game consoles, offering the most sophistication for your buck. Yet, they're constrained by being a MASSIVE company, that needs to eat 2x its weight every month to survive, meaning that it can't afford to be that picky. So, its forced to charge luxury rates for a gaming experience that may or may not be any more sophisticated than anyone else's.

Henry Ford wouldn't have had much credibility, had he started out making Lexus's, now, would he?

Wheres our money (1)

Drakin020 (980931) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816411)

I am very dissapointed that we did not ask where to pick up our check for finding a PS3 in stores.

Free copy of Casino Royale? (1)

Jarlsberg (643324) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816587)

I'm european. I did not get a copy of Casino Royale when I registered, nor was there ever a mention of a free disc when registering... Not all europeans are born alike, it would seem. ;)

Not that it matters much. I already own it on DVD. And I'm actually quite impressed with my PS3. It has a lot going for it, though the game selection could stand to improve. I'm currently playing Resistance, and after playing Gears of War on the 360, Resistance is not very impressive.

Next time can we ask better questions. (1)

kinglink (195330) | more than 7 years ago | (#18816699)

I know these questions come from us, but who ever set this up must have seen this coming. We got a ton of user questions and then allow him to get away with fake answers that don't pertain to the question and marketese speak.

Next time we get an interview with a marketing big wig please demand they answer the questions and non compliant answers will be remove. I hate seeing slashdot being turned into a game of softball.

Re:Next time can we ask better questions. (1)

Skadet (528657) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817203)

Don't be silly. The "marketing bigwigs" accept the interview because it can be good PR for them. What did you expect him to say?

"Yeah that whole Blu-Ray thing? Man, don't even get me started."
"Price cuts for the PS3? HAHAHA if you're too poor to buy our PS3 then you're too poor to buy our Blu-Ray movies. We don't want you as a customer anyway."
"Our developers are kind of slow, which is why we haven't leveraged the PS3's power fully, yet."

I mean, really. What's in it for them if they're honest?

Re:Next time can we ask better questions. (3, Insightful)

kinglink (195330) | more than 7 years ago | (#18818143)

I just hate the fact we ask him real questions and they just immediately try to spin it. The first guy says he joined SCEA in 1996. And then he goes to tell him that Wikipedia can't be trusted, giving his history until he says he joined the American branch in 1996. That's essentially what joined SCEA in 1996 means.

At the very least don't allow them to hijack questions to sell their products or point out shit that has nothing to do with it. Why allow a person to ask a question about the european delay and then allow him to fob it off, then give the company line "800,000 units in europe being the best launch ever" (sad I know that by memory, but I've heard it about 20 times since the european launch because they are so happy) Then talking about Casino Royale? you gave it away free? I'm guessing the fact that you then made it the best selling BD or HDDVD title had nothing to do with it?

Phil Harrison has been a double talking weasel in the industry for too long. I think it's time to get him to stop.

Oh really? (1)

lewp (95638) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817193)

My personal philosophy is to make the entertainment experience of videogames available to everyone. I want to see the audience of people who play videogames, of any type, on any device, include practically anyone on the planet.

Personally, I don't think selling a $500 console is the best way to reach "practically anyone on the planet." In fact, it seems like you're going in the exact opposite direction with each successive console generation.

Wikipedia reference (1)

tlambert (566799) | more than 7 years ago | (#18817991)

Wikipedia reference

Someone has already updated the Wikipedia entry, citing this Slashdot article as a source.

Maybe it's about time to start trusting it a bit more... ;^).

-- Terry

PS3 Needs Price Drop (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18818281)

"But price is only one part of the motivation to purchase a system."

The $600 price tag on the PS3 is the #1 de-motivator for purchasing it...PS3 can not reach a critical mass until it is priced below $300.
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