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Friday, March 09, 2007

PS3 Fights Back With It's Own Virtual World

While the Wii enjoys the spotlight and seems to be roundly praised as the most unique and innovative next-gen console, Sony has been losing big. In fact, according to Gamespot each unit sold is a loss of +$300 for the electronics giant.

But it seems Sony may have stumbled upon something. MarketingVOX reports that Sony has launched a console-only virtual world for PS3 gamers, allowing users to interact in a toned-down "Second Life" type environment. Though not nearly as customizable and open as the latter, Playstation Home goes on sale this Fall, and allows people to create their PS3 virtual self and even pimp out their virtual apt. People can gather in public places such as movie theaters, and play multi-player games with one another back at their virtual crib.

Well...its a step. But at $600, I have to be honest, this doesn't make me any more likely to go out and get a PS3. I suppose if I already had one, its a cool feature and I'd feel a like I got a little less screwed over.

I guess its as good a move as they could make right now- try and tap into the sense of community and get gamers to interact beyond playing each other online, and more importantly increase interaction with the brand. But I think there's a larger issue for Sony. The consensus is that Wii's success is based on the fact that they kept things simple- Nintendo made a game system that is really fuckin fun, and didn't over-extend themselves trying to be something more.

Sony, on the other hand, tried to create the uber-entertainment center, all things to everyone, and people are just not keen on it. Perhaps this will change as prices come down, developers learn how to harness the power of the system, etc. But I doubt that Sony will be able to close the gap that Wii is quickly widening.

I know I'd take a Wii anyday.

1 comment:

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