325w ago - Sony has been working hard to make sure everything in Home, its PS3 online network of public lobbies and private spaces, is exactly where it should be. And its also been busy preventing the majority of Beta testers from blabbing about the service.
However, a few naughty testers have been snapping screenshots, recording videos and posting their results on the internet for all to see. So, thanks to them, we can now show you just how well the newest version of Home is shaping up.
Check out the shots of Sony's new pad in the gallery.
This latest video takes you on a tour of Home's environments and also visits a number of the gaming areas, which should help to convince you that Sony's bold move into the online social networking community is going to be something rather special.
325w ago - Out go pole-dancing hookers and in come the look-but-don't-touch Geisha - for the third instalment of Sega's gangland scrapper, Yakuza, the action is shifting to the 17th Century. Set in 1605, Yakuza 3 will take place in Edo. (Learn Something New Every Day department: That's what Tokyo was once called).
Immediately, from the first shots, Yakuza takes a clear break from its Oldboy-influenced action and concrete locales. At first, we mistook it for another Kengo, or a new Way of the Samurai episode. But it certainly looks stunning, and we're not complaining if we can whip a katana around.
Accordingly, there's a change in gameplay too. The Heat moves from the last two, modern-day games are axed in favour of sword lunging one-hit-kills. You'll have four fighting styles, from bare fists to the choice of wielding one sword, two swords or a broadsword.
Currently, Yakuza 3 is billed as a PS3 exclusive. The series has done fantastically well in Japan, which will undoubtedly give Sony a boost in early 2008 when the new game launches in the East. UK or US launches have yet to be confirmed, but we're certain it'll hit during next year.
325w ago - After remaining optimistic on PS3 for close to a year despite slow sales, NPD analyst Anita Frazier acknowledged on Thursday that time is running short for Sony to stage a turnaround in the console industry.
"There is no doubt that the window Sony has to turn this around and bolster their position in the marketplace is narrowing," she told GameDaily Biz.
On Thursday it was reported that PS3 sales had dropped by 21 percent in August, this after a single month jump in sales in July due to the machine's recent $100 price drop.
"With only 4 months left in this calendar year, November and December will be absolutely critical [for Sony] to gain more solid ground with the PS3," Frazier added. "The story is still not fully written, but it's coming much closer to being so."
325w ago - Kane and Lynch dropped by the office this week, and what ensued was gruesome, gritty, and fun. We got to learn more about the background on these two killers, and see them in all their gratuitous murdering glory, going hands-on with the first mission of Kane and Lynch: Dead Men.
The first level unveils a lot of background on the main character, Kane. He used to belong to "The Seven," a group of top mercenaries, but the game starts off with him behind bars. Assuming the rest of The Seven died after a botched job, Kane had run off with a mysterious briefcase. He only learns that they're very much alive as they send Lynch to break him out of prison. Now, unless he brings them the briefcase, they're going to kill his wife and daughter.
The story is one of the intriguing parts of the game, and the action has the potential to set it apart. No, it doesn't have all the pretty textures of a lot of the games coming out this holiday season, but it does have a lot of stuff going on. Tons of cops were chasing us, destroying terrain and blowing up gas tanks, their cars screeching to a halt on the street (or crashing through walls), and everyone's bullets were flying. The game tries hard to feel like a heist movie, and in this first level it succeeds with flying colors.