263w ago - The cat is now out of the bag, people finally knows that BioShock is coming to PS3, after it was 'confirmed' not to.
Well, I worked on the PS3 version, I was even lead programmer for the PS3 SKU at one point, but then there were a lot of lead programmers that worked on the PS3 version, but that's a sordid tale for another post. Today's post is about one of the lies of the games industry, the exclusivity deal.
Nowadays, almost all high profile games from 3rd party publishers are planned from the beginning to be multi-platform and simultaneous release. The extra cost of developing for multiple platforms can easily be recouped since both PS3 and 360 has a big enough installbase. The simultaneous release makes the most of the marketing money by spending it on one big campaign rather than two smaller ones months apart.
Remember Sony claiming that most developers are creating the PS3 version first? That is not because PS3 is more popular, or easier to code, it is purely because from a technical point PS3 is harder to create good code for. Once you've created a good code base for PS3, it is easy to turn that into a well running 360 version.
So how did BioShock's 'exclusive' come about and why PS3 version a year later? Well, you've got to follow the money, which leads us to Microsoft.
265w ago - Sony's PlayStation 3 is currently in 3rd place in the mighty console wars. Now we know sales do not always reflect quality, but with such a slow start and a multitude of other reasons, the PS3 was the undesired machine for your average gamer.
With missing features and less-than-satisfactory games, the future wasn't looking very bright. The PlayStation 2 reigned supreme last generation, and it was clear Sony was expecting double the sales with only half the effort.
But come 2008 the PlayStation 3 is now leading its hardcore competitor; Microsoft's Xbox 360, and slowing gaining on Nintendo's always out of stock Wii. Proven franchises and new IP's are on the way, and those missing featuring are slowly but surely being implemented. Things are quickly turning around for Sony's console and by the looks of it they're only going to get better.
But can the PS3 close the gap on Microsoft's supreme gaming machine, and catch up to Nintendo in the sales department? Is it really the future proof console? Read on to find your answer.
The most probable reason for Sony's late start to the 7th generation of console wars was the addition of the Blu-ray format, a disc that can hold 7 times the amount of your standard DVD. Again, early this didn't seem to be a smart idea. The exclusive games...
266w ago - Following the release of April NPD data, Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg says that he respects his competitors, but claims Sony in particular is getting "squeezed out" of the console war.
Below are the excerpts from a phone interview from Thursday with director of product management for Xbox 360 and Xbox Live Aaron Greenberg, who comments on the sales of GTA IV, the fight for market share and how Microsoft still doesn't consider the Wii a direct competitor.
First, there are the hardware figures. GTA IV didn't seem to move consoles in the few days in April that it was on sale. We didn't see very impressive hardware figures from the two platforms that the game was available on. Will we see the hardware lift in May?
I think May will be a better barometer for GTA's impact on hardware sales. I think GTA is the type of franchise that is unique and does perform differently. It reaches a different type of customer than other big titles in our industry, and those mainstream buyers don't necessarily buy hardware the day a game comes out. I think we'll see a much longer tail with this game. That said, we're very pleased with the numbers... NPD validated what we had heard and seen from our retailers [regarding sales of GTA IV on 360 vs. PS3].
...From our standpoint, we feel good about having...
266w ago - While Metal Gear Solid 4 looks set to take the video gaming world by storm, Hideo Kojima is lamenting the fact that Japan is no longer "molding the world's gaming industry."
Yesterday, Konami held a press conference confirming that development on Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots had concluded and that the game has gone gold. Series creator Hideo Kojima took the stage and talked about the game's development and how pleased he is with how it has turned out. He also made some comments about overall trends in the industry towards casual games and, in general, how the industry is no longer steered by Japan.
"Casual games have become mainstream in the industry," declared Kojima. "It's not just a Japanese phenomenon but also something that's happening worldwide. There are new markets and possibilities opening up thanks to the trend, which is great. But on the other hand, we shouldn't forget about the hardcore gamers whose lives are about videogames.
The gamers who consider video games a subculture, and enjoy taking their time to sit down and play games that gives them energy and courage. I wanted to remind those gamers about the fun of video games. I know that we're going against the trend, but we've been working hard for the past four years so that the fire [of non-casual games] won't...
268w ago - Market research firm Niko Partners has released results from its 6th Annual Review & Forecast Report on China's Video Game Industry, a comprehensive study of trends in the online, PC offline, and console gaming segments in the world's most populous country.
Revenue for online games was up 71 percent from 2006 to 2007, to $1.7 billion - with 21% of that figure coming from casual and "advanced casual" titles.
The firm expects a further 47 percent growth next year, with compound annual growth of 29% through 2012 to $6 billion. Niko managing partner Lisa Cosmas Hanson elaborated on the sharp increase in an exclusive interview with Gamasutra.
An Increasingly Game-Aware Culture
"Disposable income is rising, and people are able to spend a more money on games then they have in the past. The number of games has increased because as it becomes a more popular pasttime, the younger kids join this force, and the older gamers continue to play," said Hanson.
"In addition, prices have fallen, so people have bought more home PCs, so they can play more than when they just had to go to cafes. People still go to cafes for competition, however, and in cities where income is not as high."
Niko puts the number of hardcore Chinese gamers at 14 million, with that group...