190w ago - The PS2 turns nine years old this week, which Sony originally launched in the US sporting a $299 price tag.
The slimline PlayStation 2 console, introduced in 2004, still remains available on store shelves for a retail price of $99.
According to Sony Computer Entertainment America, the console has a worldwide installed base of nearly 140 million, with a library approaching 10,000 games having sold more than 500 million copies combined.
Although Nintendo's GameCube and Microsoft's original Xbox ceased production years ago, Sony today declared that the PS2 "shows no signs of slowing down" at the tail end of its 10-year life span.
According to the NPD Group, the PS2 sold 146,000 last month, down from 173,500 in September 2008 and 215,000 in September of 2007.
To quote from Sony's Senior Public Relations Specialist Abby Reyes:
"There's no set date for when the life cycle of PlayStation 2 will end. As long as people keep playing, and publishers keep putting out great new titles, the console's life cycle will continue.
The longevity of the PlayStation 2 can be directly attributed to its versatility. Because it's not only a game console, but a home entertainment hub, it has found its place in one out of every three U.S. households....
201w ago - Today Sony has updated Life with PlayStation by adding a completely new channel titled 'World Heritage' to it.
It's a simple update, as the channel includes information from various Web sites (including Wikipedia) from multiple areas around the world.
To quote: If you leave your controller for a long enough time, it automatically begins spinning the globe (like the other channels) and displays hi-res pictures from the areas you're hovering above about.
If you would like to see a picture from a designated area, then you can hover the country, hit 'X' and then press the 'start' button.
An overall nice addition to the free application, allowing many Life with PlayStation fans to do even more while helping the common good.
201w ago - Valve's Gabe Newell appears to have recently conducted a focus group with deaf individuals in order to learn more about sign language and how it can be applied to games, notably the upcoming Half-Life 2: Episode 3.
Why? To help develop Alyx's character, and further the animation technology implemented in the Half-Life games.
Newell explains, to quote: "[Alyx] had a crush on someone who was hearing impaired, so she taught Dog how to sign so she could practice. Something happened, maybe, the person is off fighting the Combine someplace else, but that's why she and Dog would start signing with each other when they wanted to communicate without making noise, or communicate without other people knowing ... It gave us the excuse to build the technology for signing."
The focus group responds by noting the importance of facial expression whilst signing. While the Half-Life franchise has been known for its believable facial animation, it might take even more to fully realize the nuances necessary for authentic signing. It'll be interesting to see if Valve is up to the challenge.
202w ago - The infamous Half-Life 2 mod Cinematic Mod 10 is getting into Beta 3 stage. The most important changes: The Adriana Lima style Alyx model is now revised and looking even more realistic.
Modder Fakefactory has released the third Beta of the Cinematic Mod 10. The modification for Half-Life 2 offers several improvements.
The most important changes applied with Cienmtaic Mod 10 Beta 3:
• Certain maps in Half-Life 2, episode 1 and Episode 2 have been overhauled in order to increase the visual quality as well as the performance
• Some new textures
• New HD model V50 of Alyx (Adriana Lima based)
• New dialogues for citizens