247w ago - According to MTV Multiplayer (linked above), Sony's previously un-reported new "PlayStation Network Bandwidth Fee" is forcing publishers to think twice about what content they offer to PS3 gamers for download.
To quote: Until October 1 2008, video game publishers who wanted to offer downloadable content on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 didn't have to worry about getting a bill from Microsoft and Sony.
The million-plus downloads that a popular demo or map pack might receive could delight gamers, but rack up some expensive bandwidth costs. No problem: the publishers, who already pay a licensing fee to get their games on the two big platforms, could count on the platform holders – Microsoft and Sony – to pay the cost of piping that digital content to gamers.
That situation changed with the PS3 on October 1 of last year, when Sony implemented a 16 cents per Gigabyte fee to publishers for paid and free downloadable content, according to publishing sources familiar with Sony's policy.
Game publishers are not happy about it.
MTV Multiplayer has verified that a letter sent to publishers last fall detailed the policy. It applies a 16-cent charge to every Gigabyte of content downloaded from the PS3's PSN online store. For free content, like demos, those charges...
247w ago - Sony Corp. is under pressure from video game publishers to cut the price of the PlayStation 3 console, or risk seeing more development funds shift to Nintendo Co.'s Wii.
To quote: PS3 sales in the next 12 months are likely to total 14 million, compared with 28 million Wiis and 9.7 million Xbox 360s, according to the Daiwa Institute of Research, a Tokyo-based researcher and consultant.
Price cuts have an immediate impact.
Sony reduced the PS3 price from $499.99 in October 2007 and sales more than doubled in the next month. In September, Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft released its lowest-priced Xbox 360, at $199.99. The company almost doubled Sony's U.S. shipments from October to January after trailing PS3 in the prior three months, NPD data show.
"Anytime a console manufacturer reduces the price, software publishers benefit," Yves Guillemot, chief executive officer of Ubisoft Entertainment SA, Europe's largest video-game maker, said in an e-mail.
Game makers now focus development in two directions: one for the top-selling Wii and the other for Xbox 360, PS3 and personal computers.
293w ago - Today another 4 game publishers have pulled out of this year's E3 conference, adding to Activision and Vivendi who have also discontinued their membership with the Entertainment Software Association (ESA).
So far those who have confirmed that they will not be attending include Codemasters, NCSoft, Her Entertainment, id Software, Vivendi, and Activision.
Several industry sources say the drop outs are down to ESA's latest president Mike Gallagher. Analyst Michael Pachter agrees with this theory and says that Gallagher is "far less knowledgeable and sophisticated" than the previous president and that publishers no longer see the value in the ESA.
To quote: Lowenstein was a very savvy industry veteran who paid attention to the goings-on in the industry and cared what the community had to say, Pachter said.
The new person... whose name completely escapes me because I've never met him or heard from him, is far less knowledgeable and sophisticated about this industry than Doug was and is going to make some rookie mistakes.
Doug used to be a very visible spokesperson in congress... when you'd get these [things like] Barack Obama saying videogames are corrupting our youth or MADD saying that Take-Two should pull GTA off t he shelves, you would hear Lowenstein...