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Kaz Hirai on PS3 Price

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366w ago - One of the biggest surprises from the Tokyo Game Show was the lack of a price drop for the Japanese PlayStation 3. Many had gone into Sony president Kaz Hirai's keynote speech expecting the big announcement that Sony would be shedding a few yen off the Japanese price point.

Reuters grilled Hirai on the issue. "We think about price daily," said Hirai, "but at this point we're not considering doing something immediately."

After using the good old "this is a marathon" argument to defend poor sales of the PS3 so far, Hirai stood firm with his expectations of 11 million systems shipped by the end of fiscal 2007. "We're thinking of many things to push hardware and software sales in Japan, North America, Europe and Asia. We feel we can definitely do this."

Hirai did admit during his keynote that a price drop at some point is a possibility. But apparently Sony has some work to do first. "Before adjusting the price, we have some things to do," he said. "It's important to strengthen our software lineup, get the word out about the PS3, and see if we can deliver our message."
 

PlayStation boss on why you should own a PS3

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366w ago - What's the number one reason to own a PS3 right now? According to SCEA president Jack Tretton, the console is "future proof," that's why.

"The original PlayStation lasted 10 years -- a tremendous innovation when other platforms died and were all but forgotten," Tretton told us in a recent interview. "The same thing is going on with the PS2, and I think that will be the case with the PS3."

He went on to say, "I don't think we expected nor we need to capture the lifecycle of the PS3 in the first nine months. We want to build evangelists, one consumer at a time, and it involves sacrificing in the short term before paying off in the long term."

Regarding the fact that some PS3 games often release weeks after their Xbox 360 counterparts, Tretton said, "We're taking all our development findings and investments and passing them onto the third-party development community.

"We are physically going to studios and working with them hand-in-hand. You will start to see that bear fruit in the near future."
 

TGS '07 Preview: Assassin's Creed for PS3

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366w ago - Starting outside a crowd of villagers standing around an enemy on a horse, the opening cinema for this demo had the player walking around in what is essentially a cut-scene that keeps you in control. This basically showed how there are going to be slower-paced sections of the game where story sequences pop up as you walk around. Neat enough, though a bit less than exciting in Japanese...

One of the key complaints post-E3 has been Assassin's Creed looks great when you watch the developers demonstrate the game, but it feels awkward when you jump in and try to run around and fight/avoid the enemies you come across because you constantly bump into people and can't recover very quickly when you take a hit.

At TGS, Ubisoft showed us a move where you can shove enemies out of your way with your forearm as you run, and mentioned another ability that will help you recover when stumbling -- apparently you earn both of these (as well as others) over the course of the game. We didn't have a chance to try them out, but we're hopeful they will make the game's open world playground aspects more enjoyable and not require the player to move tentatively all the time.

Additionally, Ubisoft's Jade Raymond also told us that after the game's showing at E3 back in July, the development team made small tweaks to the...
 

TGS '07: Kojima speaks

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366w ago - Metal Gear Solid series director gives more details on PS3 stealth-actioner, reveals Metal Gear Online starter pack will be included in game.

Director Hideo Kojima appeared on stage at Konami's booth and started off by talking about the new bosses in MGS4. Although they were revealed to the press last month, this is the first time that Kojima directly showed them off to the public himself.

"In the first Metal Gear Solid, we featured a special forces unit that consisted of elite active soldiers," he explained. "In MGS2, we needed an even stronger team, and after a while of thinking, we went with a Special Forces unit that trains and instructs other special forces units. We decided to give superhuman abilities to those characters, kind of like in American comics. In MGS3, we had to make even stronger characters, so we went with a 'legendary' Special Forces unit."

"MGS4 was really tough since we had to go beyond legendary soldiers, so we thought that it might be better off if they weren't human. We made [a unit of] monsters, called the Beauty and the Beast," said Kojima, outlining the birth behind the oddly shaped new set of bosses in MGS4.

According to Kojima, the player's objective against the Beauty and the Beast unit is not to kill them. Much like the "Little Sisters" in BioShock,...
 

Sony shines Blu-ray on PS3 sales campaign

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366w ago - Sony is to step up its marketing campaign for the PlayStation 3 and emphasise that the games console is a Blu-ray disc player.

The move is aimed at boosting both the PS3 and the Sony-backed DVD format ahead of the holiday season.

Kaz Hirai, president of the games unit, told the Financial Times it was working closely with Sony Pictures and Sony Entertainment to "get the Blu-ray message out". It was a delicate "balancing act" for Sony Computer Entertainment,

"The PS3 is first and foremost a video games machine but we want to say - by the way, it's a great Blu-ray player as well," Mr Hirai said. Marketing efforts in the US, Europe and Japan would highlight the PS3 as a Blu-ray disc player as well.

Sony yesterday disappointed analysts by failing to cut the PS3's price, but Mr Hirai did not rule out a future price cut. "Going aggressive only on price without being able to back it up with content doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me," he said. A price cut would have a "real impact" on sales only if there were enough software titles to support the PS3.

But analysts were sceptical and said Sony could miss its shipment targets for the year. "Without a price cut close to Christmas, reaching 11m shipments is going to be very tough," said DavidGibson, analyst at Macquarie in...
 
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