Jul 5, 2008

As in planes that can fly in the sky or planes that you can drive around on the ground? Seriously speaking, there was a vague mention up on Criterion Games' website giving hint to more vehicles ... of the winged and massive variety. Can Burnout Paradise's engine really dish out full flying machines? Maybe; considering all the previous updates and just the sheer amount of content that's added every time, we'd have to say we're going on good faith with this one. With Cagney soon to release this July 10, Burnout Paradise fans have a lot to look forward to.

On a side note, please pardon the photo. We just thought the Foo Fighters may have predicted this years ago. Have a peek at their lyrics: "Im looking to the sky to save me. Looking for a sign of life. Looking for something to help me burnout bright." See what we mean?

It seems that David Hayter really wants to pen the script to the Metal Gear Solid movie. He has been recently trying to get fans of the series behind his banner by asking them to email Sony and make it happen. Now, over at Anime Expo in Los Angeles, Hayter chats things up with 1Up, taking time to talk more about his vision for Solid Snake's cinema debut and even divulging about a bit of frustration with Hideo Kojima's over-the-top direction.

"Kojima and I have different styles," said Hayter. "But I've certainly learned things from him, especially about ambiguity and telling a story without giving all the answers." While he can appreciate Kojima's work, there are quite a lot of areas where Hayter just couldn't agree with what was going on with Snake. In particular, he refers to Snake's suicide tease in previous MGS4 trailers: "I didn't buy it at all." He believes that Snake, with all his years, shouldn't have to hesitate. "If he knows it's time, then it's time."

Another folly in his eyes was a fan favorite scene from MGS1. "It's a delicate thing to discuss love blooming on the battlefield with Otacon," he said. Another one was the alternate ending with Otacon: "It felt like it was written to be romantic. It was just humiliating." So what does Dave have in mind for MGS: The Movie? He'll obviously avoid doing any of the above nitpickings. With that in mind, it would be interesting to see where he would go with the film.


Supposedly from an early beta version of Silent Hill: Homecoming on the PS3, this Russian gameplay video shows a playthrough of what appears to be the first chapter of the game. Gameplay-wise everything looks similar to what we have seen before, and the provider of the video assures us the narrator isn't saying anything we didn't know already. In terms of story, we'll refrain from saying much as small story elements are disclosed in the 13+ minute video, but it involves the protagonist Alex returning home and running into some old family and friends. Look for Silent Hill: Homecoming when it arrives September of this year.


The console war is fought everywhere these days, but the internet seems to be where people are most vocal. It also serves to give each console its own set of downloadable content, fuelling the war even more. Each week we'll give you a run-down of what's available to download on the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Wii, and declare a winner.

Note: This round-up is based on UK releases to each console's online service. Releases outside of the UK could vary.

PlayStation 3 - PSN

Just a solitary new game release for PS3 this week, and one that's been available for Xbox 360 for a while now. There's also the fact that buying the game for XBLA gets Xbox 360 gamers access to the Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD beta. The Commando 3 demo was released last week so we recommend PS3 gamers give that a try before spending £6.99 on the full game.

There's plenty of new DLC up for grabs though, including the free Rainbow Six Vegas 2 Gift Pack and the ultra cool Top Gun Anthem for Guitar Hero 3. Those who've picked up the newly released Buzz! Quiz TV can also immediately expand their question selection with a range of question sets.

Wolf of the Battlefield: Commando 3: £6.99

Guitar Hero 3 - July 4th 2008 Holiday Single - Top Gun Anthem: Free
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2: Gift Pack: Free
Buzz! Australian Culture Quiz: £3.49
Buzz! UK Culture Quiz: £3.49
Buzz Rock Legends: £3.49
Buzz Sci Fi: £3.49

Movement - Movement Ep1 'Lets hit the road': Free
Movement ep2 'Paris Respects to Jim': Free
Movement Minitel Rose Be with you: Free
Movement Minitel Rose Continue: Free
Movement Minitel Rose Interview: Free
Movement Pravda Interview: Free
Movement Pravda 'Je suis french': Free
Movement Pravda 'Tu es l'Ouest': Free
BIA HH Ubidays Trailer: Free
Haze Launch Trailer: Free

Wallpapers and Themes
Top Spin 3 Wallpaper: Free
Elefunk Forest Wallpaper: Free
Elefunk Circus Wallpaper: Free
MGS4 OTC Theme: Free
Elefunk Theme: Free
Echochrome Theme: Free

Xbox 360 - Marketplace

No demos this week for Xbox 360 owners, but this week does see the release of the classic Namco Bandai beat 'em up SoulCalibur which, despite its years, is still a great fighter - the lack of online play is a big disappointment though.

As on PS3, there's the free Top Gun Anthem for Guitar Hero 3 and the free Rainbow Six Vegas 2 Gift Pack. There's also a wide range of premium DLC including new Ninja Gaiden 2 costumes, new questions for Wits & Wagers and a selection of songs for Rock Band.

SoulCalibur: 800 MS Points

Guitar Hero III July 4 Holiday Track - Top Gun Anthem: Free
Rainbow Six Vegas 2 Gift Pack: Free
Wits & Wagers DLC: 320 MS Points
Ninja Gaiden 2 Costume Pack Shadow Walker: 200 MS Points
Ninja Gaiden 2 Costume Pack Biometal: 200 MS Points
Ninja Gaiden 2 Costume Pack Fiend Hayabusa: 200 MS Points
Rock Band: Vesuvius "Promised Land" [Track]: Free
Rock Band: Trapt "Who's Going Home with You Tonight" [Track]: 80 MS Points
Rock Band: Papa Roach "Time is Running Out" [Track]: 80 MS Points
Rock Band: Motley Crue "Down at the Whisky" [Track]: 80 MS Points
Rock Band: Crue Fest Pack 01 [Track Pack]: 240 MS Points

Alone in the Dark Eden Trailer: Free
Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution BtS Trailer: Free
Spider-Man: Web of Shadows Behind The Scenes Trailer: Free

Themes and Pictures
LEGO Indiana Jones Gamer Picture Pack: 130 MS Points
LEGO Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade Theme Pack: 100 MS Points
LEGO Indiana Jones Temple of Doom Theme Pack: 150 MS Points
LEGO Indiana Jones Raiders of the Lost Ark Theme Pack: 150 MS Points
Soulcalibur IV PICTURE Pack 01: 80 MS Points
Soulcalibur IV THEME 01: 150 MS Points


There's nothing new on the Virtual Console, but there are two new titles available for WiiWare.

My Pokémon Ranch will see the loveable creatures interacting with user created Miis for the fist time. By linking up with Pokémon Diamond or Pearl on the Nintendo DS, captured Pokémon can be transferred to the ranch. At the ranch players will be able to take pictures and share them with friends.

The second new release is Pop, which as the name suggests will see players popping bubbles. Each bubble is worth points and players can chain together coloured bubbles for big points. Players will earn badges for completing certain objectives and also compete to place high up on the online leaderboards.

Also available this week is a bunch of new content for Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a King. Simply select "Purchase Add-on Content" from either the main game menu or the in-game castle menu.

WiiWare Games
My Pokémon Ranch: 1000 Wii Points
Pop: 700 Wii Points

Infinity Spire: 300 Wii Points
Library: 200 Wii Points
Castle Renovation: 100 Wii Points
New Royal Outfit 2: 100 Wii Points
New Chancellor Outfit 2: 100 Wii Points

And the winner of this week's DLC Royal Rumble is...

Xbox LIVE Marketplace
I know we sound like a broken record but the Xbox 360 Marketplace comes out on top yet again. It has the better new game release in SoulCalibur, letting everyone experience one of the classics of the beat 'em up genre. We'd also argue that the Xbox has the better selection of add-on content. Wii at least puts up a fight this week, with two new WiiWare titles and some Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a King DLC, but it's not enough to lift the platform out of third place.


KoOnce was a time Burnout was all about the cars. Then they went and brought bikes into the mix, and everything changed. Criterion got a little...crazy. Started thinking less about the vehicles and more about the pure speed. That doesn't make it any less surprising to hear Criterion is thinking about moving beyond terrestrial vehicles altogether, though, and has announced that, after it's done with the Cagney update, it'll begin working on introducing planes into Burnout Paradise. Yeah, planes. No idea how that will work, but the prospect of crashing a plane into a car at high speed, then going into crash mode, is no doubt an appealing one to the game's core userbase.


Games like Call of Duty 4 run at a framerate of 60 frames per second on both systems. But Call of Duty 4 is a game that experienced technical problems with various bottlenecks due to the varying levels of action that occur on the screen. The game was originally designed to run at 60 frames per second at 720p, but it caused drops in the framerate.

The proof of this is the fact that Call of Duty 4 runs at a resolution of only 640p on both the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. This may be "equal" in terms of what is displayed on the screen, but the FACT is that Call of Duty 4 is putting a much larger burden on the PS3 than it is the Xbox 360.

Confirmation of this can be seen in the large number of games that "run smoothly at 60 frames per second on the Xbox 360, but struggle to run at 30 frames per second on the Playstation 3." That was a quote from Gamespot.

It's simple math: The Xbox 360 can display approximately 500,000,000 polygons per second, compared to 275,000,000 polygons per second for the Playstation 3.

Multi-platform games use what is called a “Lowest Common Denominator” form of programming.

Basically, what this means is the developers start out by saying to themselves, “We need to develop a game for the Xbox 360 and the Playstation 3.”

Then, the developers put limits on how many polygons they are going to put on the screen, and they determine what framerate the game will run at as a result of that number.

When the developers multiply the number of polygons displayed on the screen by the number of frames being displayed each second, they examine what that number is. Multi-platform games can NEVER display more than 275,000,000 polygons per second, or else they can’t be released for the Playstation 3, since the PS3 cannot display more than 275,000,000 polygons per second.

As a result, developers are often conservative with the number of polygons being displayed with multi-platform games, especially with the poor reputation of inconsistent framerates that the Playstation 3 has acquired over time.

It basically comes down to these THREE factors:
If a multi-platform game running at 30 frames per second on the Playstation 3 uses 250,000,000 polygons or less, it gives the developers the ability to allow the Xbox 360 version to run at 60 frames per second, since 500,000,000 is double the number of 250,000,000.

If a multi-platform game running at 30 frames per second on the Playstation 3 uses over 250,000,000 polygons per second, it means the Xbox 360 version is also forced to run at only 30 frames per second. This is an unfortunate situation, because it means the Playstation 3 will be using 90-100% of its power by displaying somewhere between 250,000,000 to 275,000,000 polygons per second, while the Xbox 360 will only be using 60% of its power, since the Xbox 360 has so much more polygon power.

If a multi-platform game is intended to run at 60 frames per second on the Playstation 3, the Xbox 360 version will also run at 60 frames per second. The Playstation 3 version will be limited to 275,000,000 polygons per second. The Xbox 360 will also be limited to 275,000,000 polygons per second, due to the fact that 275,000,000 is the Lowest Common Denominator. This is unfortunate, because it means the Playstation 3 version will be using between 90% to 100% of the systems power, while the Xbox 360 will be using only 60% of the systems power. Call of Duty 4 is an excellent example of this situation.

The Playstation 3 only transfers data at a rate of 54MB per second as a Blu-ray player being used for movies. When it comes to gaming, there are hardware “bottlenecks” that the Playstation 3 faces, which allows the PS3 to transfer data at a rate of only 9MB per second. The Xbox 360 transfers data at a rate of 16MB per second.

The Official Playstation Magazine wrote an article about the longer load times of PS3 games shortly after the Playstation 3 was launched. The only time the PS3 does not have to deal with either noticeably or significantly longer load times is when the game is placed on the PS3 hard drive. Sadly, it often takes over TWENTY long minutes to write the game onto the PS3 hard drive. Even when a PS3 game is written onto a hard drive, the load times between Xbox 360 games and PS3 games is virtually identical, as we saw in Devil May Cry 4 and Grand Theft Auto 4.

Gamespot has conducted a Graphics Comparison between the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 each year since the Playstation 3 has been available. Xbox 360 has been declared the winner of the Graphics Comparison each of the three years: 2006, 2007, 2008.

2008 shows that the gap in performance continues to get bigger, in favor of the Xbox 360. Here is the hyperlink that shows the newest comparison–one the Xbox 360 easily defeats the Playstation.

Also, the Xbox 360 uses 10MB of eDRAM. This new form of RAM technology is something that even Windows Vista-based PCs do not yet take advantage of. The next release of Direct-X on the PC will start to take advantage of eDRAM technology for gaming, but it still hasn’t happened yet.

This just goes to show you how incredibly far ahead of its time the Xbox 360 Unified-Shader GPU/Multi-Core CPU design is.


Here's a new trailer for the PS3 exclusive SOCOM: Confrontation. What would you expect to see in this video? There are Navy SEALs, guns, and SEALs using said guns. Still -- the areas look huge and fantastic. Who doesn't love gunning down terrorists? It's just a selfish wish, but we'd like a more realistic cover system. The devs do realize that bullets would go right through a barrel and/or a wooden wagon, right? It makes for cover in the game, sure, but at least let such cover points get demolished easily. That said, we'll shut up and enjoy it for what it is: an action-packed trailer.


Eric Lempel said Home is still on schedule for a release this Fall. Let's start with that reassurance. When pointing out that Home will still be in a beta stage upon said release despite delays, Lempel replied with "the reason we've been delaying [Home] is so that we can deliver a high quality service that the users will enjoy. Even though it will be in beta, it will be a fair representation of what the service can be and its potential, so it won't be a 0.5 release, it will be a fully robust service."

Expect the movie download service to get implemented into Home somehow, even though it's getting released in the US this Summer. No word on other regions or TV and music content -- but Sony will "offer everything [consumers] expect from us and probably a little bit more." He declined to discuss the potential for the PS3 to transfer said movies onto the PSP, which usually means it's going to happen in a big announcement at some big game developer event. Whatever those are. No promises!


48:40. That's amount of time into yesterday's 1UP Yours podcast that reveals Kratos will not be in Soulcalibur IV. They have been playing the game on both Xbox 360 and PS3 (though Yoda is mentioned immediately after the Kratos comment, they do speak of Darth Vader later) and they do not see Kratos in it. Unless there is some last minute change, which is unlikely, Kratos will not be in the main game. Sorry kids! Let's all hope for something in the form of DLC then, shall we?


A poster on Capcom Unity's forums has received an answer to the question of whether Devil May Cry 4 and Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix will be getting the trophy treatment and it is no. Capcom feels that DMC4 already has "its own little trophylike system" and the Puzzle Fighter team has moved on to other projects.

There is a tiny bit of good news though, Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix may have trophies implemented, but it will depend on "what schedules look like and what Sony's requirements are." The only real good news is future games from Capcom will all have trophies, as it has "been worked into CEI's developer contracts as a required deliverable." Have other publishers signed such a contract?

This is rather disappointing, but after a string of such reports, we are not surprised. We are just really hoping SSF2T HD Remix will have support.


When the PS3's launch back in late 2006/early 2007 was met with largely disappointing sales in many territories across the globe, analysts and Sony fans alike increasingly looked to the future to cite possible PS3 titles that could lift sales to PS2 levels.
Gran Turismo was mentioned. Metal Gear, of course. Lair, The Getaway and Grand Theft Auto were all named. Even Fatal Inertia - itself later delayed (and almost cancelled) on PS3, launching on Xbox 360 instead - was cited as an exclusive title that might have sent sales skyward.

Of course, for the most part, all of the above titles have either made their debut or disappeared off the radar altogether. Out of all of them, Metal Gear arguably made the most difference, though evidence suggests its effect is already waning.

The latest sales figures from Japan have the PS3 falling steadily back to its pre-MGS4 sales levels (to 17,973 units this week, to be specific), drifting way behind the Wii just weeks after it stole headlines and surged past it - admittedly only for one week.

But it does beg the question; if one of the franchises most synonymous with the PlayStation can't rescue the PS3's fortunes, what can? Have we reached a time when software no longer pushes hardware, with consumers making their purchasing decisions based upon media specifications and firmware updates?

I hope not. I don't want to end up reviewing firmware for a living.


Jul 4, 2008

Despite a previous straight-out denial about Diablo 3 being on consoles, semi-contradictory reports have been leaking out in the press stating otherwise. A couple of days ago Blizzard COO Paul Sams told the Guardian he "do(esn't) know yet." He goes on to say it depends on whether "console owners would allow PC players to play against console gamers" and if "gameplay experience will be the same on console, especially regarding the controls." Blizzard wants everything to be perfect, and that "developing for multiple platforms you sometimes have to compromise. We aren't willing to compromise."

Yesterday, Eurogamer's interview with Vice President of Game Design Rob Pardo has him admitting that a console version of Diablo 3 is "theoretically posssible" but some changes to the control would have to be made. He conceded that the game is "of our major franchises, the one that's most console friendly, for sure," and that "Diablo would be the easiest game to translate. But it would still take a bit of work."

We honestly think this is a just PR speak for "no" to Diablo 3 on PS3, at least not at the same time as the PC and Mac versions. We wouldn't get our hopes up!


This is a possible fix to the problem many ps3 users are facing due to the error in 2.40.

The ps3's firmware remains untouched so technically it's not a brick but rather a bug. I have heard that people have seen the download jump from 50% to 100% right away. Between those those percentages are integrity checks and for some reason they were skipped. After the PS3 will boot and attempt to load that update file but it will be unable to as it's not complete.

Fix 1: Replace the Hard Drive so the ps3 will boot the last firmware you were on. (Firmware was never updated) Then the ps3 will ask you to format it so do so.

Fix 2: (You will lose all game saves) If you don't have two hard drives you could always hook the hard drive up to your computer and reformat it. Then put back into your ps3 and the ps3 will ask you to format it.


Reader Joe Rivera has sent an e-mail alerting us of a new petition he has started titled "PlayStation 3: No More Game Installs". The reason we are posting this petition is because, like Joe said "you guys understand what I mean in this petition, so I forwarded to you first".

In the petition, Joe states "Hard-drive installs are not necessary as you can clearly see in games such as Uncharted: Drake's Fortune, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, and Unreal Tournament III. These are some of the highest rate games and they do not require a hard-drive installation."

He goes on to say "Our space is being taken up, and time is being wasted. We use our PlayStation 3's as a media hub rather than just a gaming system. We would like to be able to store movies, music, and pictures on our console, without a new 5GB being added to our space every time a new game releases."

Truer words haven't been spoken. Hit the jump to sign the petition.


Firmware 2.4 have added a number of ‘hidden’ upgrades that we dont know about. The first was an upgrade to the Playstation Store where pre 2.4 the store would load sluggish and no cache properly. This was fixed in 2.4 and the store now loads a lot quicker. Also there is a new view mode if you press square while browsing through the content.

Along with the above, another hidden upgrade has been found and that is the ability to play Flash games in the Playstation 3’s web browser. Some people have reported that you could do that before 2.4 came out, but it seems now that a lot more people can play Flash games with their PS3’s with firmware 2.4 installed.

A user has emailed in saying that he can now play Flash games in the PS3’s browser and has been playing Sonic at the following site: http://www.sonicgamesflash.com/ultimate-flash-sonic-game.html (watch out for pop ups though)

You can now view and watch/play stuff on newgrounds.com

If your the lucky one who has installed firmware 2.4 with no problems go ahead and try your favourite flash games.


The annual report of the Entertainment Merchants Association released recently stated that PS3 is "the primary driver behind Blu-ray sales, with 87% of PS3 owners watching Blu-ray movies on their console." With 3 million units sold by the end of 2007, the PS3 easily outsold the HD-DVD add-on for the Xbox 360, which sold 316,000 units. The EMA feels Blu-ray was the losing format in 2006, but thanks to the PS3, it rebounded in 2007 to become the de facto winner. Their prediction is the PS3 will be "the main force behind Blu-ray disc sales until 2009, when standalone Blu-ray players are expected to outpace the sales volume of the PS3." We think this report raises a number of questions:

Is the PS3 really the driving force behind Blu-ray? Or is Blu-ray the driving force behind the PS3? Did Sony take too much of a gamble with a new format and didn't invest enough into the games? If so, will that improve now that Blu-ray has won?

What about the credibility of the report? Almost a year ago, the NPD Group found that 60% of PS3 owners didn't know it played Blu-ray discs. Is that a contradiction with this study or have consumers become more educated? As a side note, the study found the average gamer to be 33-years old with 24% that are older than 50. Are 25% gamers really 50 and over? If true, this might be good news for Sony.

What do you guys think? Fire away in the comments below.


In an interview with Yahoo Japan, Hudson Soft president Michihiro Ishizuka has cited high development costs and "associated risks of developing for the format" as reasons why they will not be making any full-fledged PS3 games. However, this doesn't come as too much of a surprise; Hudson Soft, publisher of classic franchises such as Bomberman and Adventure Island, has only published two titles on Sony's gaming devices (both Bomberman titles on PSP) this generation.

Nevertheless, Ishizuka did called the PSN "attractive" as a means to deliver games. With original games coming out on Wiiware, does that mean we'll see some of these games ported over onto the PSN? Or will Wii and DS owners have all the fun?


Metal Gear Online got a server-side update today which added a new free gameplay mode. "Team Sneaking" pits one team, equipped with Stealth, against another team which is defending a target. Stealth'd players can be spotted, like in the single player game, and will then be visible until the caution meter goes down. We only tried it out a couple of times, but "Team Sneaking" games seem to go by quite quickly.

A new ruleset has also been added, which can be played in most of the game modes. The name of this ruleset, "Headshots Only," is pretty self explanatory. Any non-headshot kills suffer a points penalty, which makes the game that little bit more interesting. These additions are only the beginning -- no doubt we'll see more added before too long.


Amazing deal on an incredible game: Metal Gear Solid 4 for the low price of $39.99. Before you run off to try and to purchase a copy for yourself there are two major restrictions. First, this must be purchased in-store (sorry no online shopping) so you would have to be located in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, or Ohio and close to a Meijer. Since today happens to be the 4th of July your only chance to redeem this extraordinary deal is tomorrow July 5th. Fortunately, if you live in the states mentioned above then you are in luck, most Meijer are open 24 hours a day and are located very conveniently. At this price, Midwesterners have no excuse not to purchase a game of this caliber for this unbelievable price.

Developers only got their hands on Trophies recently, so it's unreasonable to expect games to be patched instantly. However, with Super Stardust HD enjoying a massive revival just now it's fair to say we'll be getting a lot more Trophy compatible games coming our way as soon as possible. What we're attempting to do here is tie everything together, and sum up which games will get patches, and when, with official confirmations where possible.

Last Updated: July 4th, 2008

Already Supporting Trophies
Super Stardust HD: Patched.

Will Release With Trophies
PixelJunk Eden: Will launch with Trophies.
Resistance 2: Will launch with Trophies.
MotorStorm 2: Will launch with Trophies.
SOCOM: Will launch with Trophies.
LittleBigPlanet: Will launch with Trophies.

Definitely Supporting Trophies Via a Patch
Buzz: Quiz TV: will be getting a patch hopefully sometime in July.
Pain: Definitely getting a Trophy patch.
Uncharted: Definitely getting a Trophy patch.
NovaStrike: Definitely getting a Trophy patch.
Warhawk: Definitely getting a Trophy patch.
Burnout Paradise: Definitely getting a Trophy patch.

Expected To Support Trophies
BioShock: Will Apparently launch with Trophies.

Could Possibly Support Trophies
fl0w: Apparently up for debate.
Heavenly Sword: Could be patched.

Will Not Support Trophies
Call of Duty 4: Will not be patched to support Trophies.
Civilisation Revolution: Will not be patched to support Trophies.
Resistance: Will not be patched to support Trophies.
Ratchet and Clank: Will not be patched to support Trophies.

This list will be updated as and when we get more information and confirmations.


Jul 3, 2008

Before beginning this article I would like to make it clear that I’m a confessed Xbot. Even after churning through 3 separate Xbox 360’s due to hardware failure, I have remained loyal to Microsoft and believe that Xbox Live is an amazingly fun service, even worth paying for. BUT do I really? What has kept me coming back again and again when a normal gamer would have spat the dummy and gotten rid of the Xbox 360 years ago? Why is now the right time to finally break away from Microsoft?

The following reasons are what I believe to be the most compelling as to why my fellow hardcore Xbots should seriously consider taking the plunge and moving over to the PS3.

The Play Station Network
Now I hear what you guys are saying, nothing beats Xbox lives usability, social aspects and servers, but PSN has come a long way over the last year or so. The Servers (due to less traffic) experience a lot less lag than what we have all become accustomed to on Live. The PSN interface thanks to 2.40 update will encompass almost all the functionality that Xbots are familiar with, including fast access to friends and game invitations, and it’s FREE!

The Price
In most countries you can now pick up a PS3 for roughly the same price as we paid for our Xbox 360’s at launch. Currently in Australia you can get the MGS4 pack for a little over $650. While the price may have seemed crazy at the beginning, the PS3 is now quite reasonably priced considering it comes standard with WiFi and a 40gb hard disk which can be easily and cheaply upgraded to any 2.5” laptop hard disk.

Who knows when Microsoft will add an external Blu-ray player to the Xbox 360? In fact, I don’t even know what to do with my HD DVD external drive! But the point is that sooner or later we will be adapting to Blu-ray technology so why not pick up a console that comes standard with it? Moreover, whilst we may see a Blu Ray option for the Xbox 360, we will never see large games such as Metal Gear Solid 4 released on Blu Ray discs for the Xbox. And who wants to watch a Blu Ray movie with the noise which is the Xbox 360 drowning out the soundtrack?
As mentioned earlier, the ability to upgrade your PS3’s internal hard drive with any 2.5” SATA drive (basically any laptop hard drive), is indicative of Sony’s open policy to 3rd party accessories. It seems weird that an evil corporation such as Sony would allow this, but I for one won’t complain. The PS3 will connect with any Bluetooth device, so I can use my Bluetooth headset with my phone, my Mac and my PS3The same is true with webcams. Pretty much any USB webcam will connect with the PS3 and allow for group video chats and in game video support.

Media centre support
As the only console to fully support DivX codecs, as well as a whole range of audio, image and video files, the PS3 combines its Blu Ray player to stand out as a great media centre for your lounge room. And with the impending release of PlayTV, the twin HD television tuner, we can soon record our favourite free-to-air shows and then store them on our internal drive or any USB drive we connect to the console.

Who needs Achievements? I for one do. But with the release of the trophy system on PSN, we Xbots will now be able to enjoy the satisfaction of getting trophies for our efforts.

The fact is that there are only two reasons for most of us to stick with the Xbox 360. One being that we have a regular groups of friends that we play with each night and the other, more importantly, our gamer scores. This reason above all else is probably what keeps us hooked. All those hours spent slogging through single player campaigns or online co-op has a numerical representation that we feel would be difficult to let go of.

Maybe, just maybe, it’s time to make the switch to the PS3?


Enjoy Qore? We hope you replied "yes" to that, because that's all you're really getting this week. Other than the usual rhythm based DLC, there's a whole load of trailers and videos. Most of them are pretty meh-tastic, but Killzone 2 and Valkyria Chronicles is always worth a look. Here's the full release list:

"Playable" content

Qore episode 2 ($2.99 - includes Naruto demo)

Add-on content

Guitar Hero III "Top Gun Anthem" song add-on (free)
Rock Band DLC:

Crüefest Pack ($3)

"Down At The Whisky" - Mötley Crüe ($1)
"Time is Running Out" - Papa Roach ($1)
"Who's Going Home With You Tonight" - Trapt ($1)
"Promised Land" - Vesuvius (Free)

Killzone 2 trailer
Valkyria Chronicles video
Battlefield: Bad Company "Bad World" trailer

Battlefield: Bad Company "Snake Eyes" trailer

Battlefield: Bad Company "Rainbow Sprinkles" trailer
Dead Space Animated Comic 2
Dead Space Animated Comic 3
Tiger Woods 09 Course video
Vampire Rain Altered Species 1 and 2
Lakeview Terrace movie trailer
John Mayer Live in LA Blu-ray trailer
Vantage Point movie trailer
Persepolis movie trailer

Themes and Wallpapers

Woodward theme
Civilization Revolution theme
Top Spin 3 wallpaper


Have you got Swap Magic back from the good ol' PS2 days? Have you got downloaded emulators? Well, thanks to this YouTube video, now you can see how to get an emulator up and running. Of course, it's a German video, so we have next to no idea what's going on -- but we notice there's some quick option-swapping whilst Swap Magic is loading up. This is far from the only video on YouTube displaying emulators on the PS3, but it's interesting to see just how simple the process appears. Anyone had any luck with this?


In-game XMB

Now this is not just something that everyone on PSN wanted, it is something that PSN needed. I mean to be honest I don’t see how this wasn’t included in the launch. I am glad I can use this now. But we still can’t do cross game invites which is a big letdown.

View Game-Specific Trophies
Like Xbox 360s Achievement system. A great idea. I’m a big Achievement whore and that fuels my gaming needs. It gives you a sense of accomplishment. I already accomplished a lot. But I guess Sony thinks I don’t deserve trophies for the games I’ve already completed seeing as Trophies aren’t retroactive.

Time/Date display
This is something that should have just came with the system. I honestly don’t see why this was shown off as a main feature. Although it is nice to finally have a time display on my PS3 this comes a little too late.

Send text messages to PSN users on your friends list
I couldn’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten a message in game that was important and didn’t know because it doesn’t show you when you get a message in game. This (along with the In Game XMB obviously) are the biggest features for me in the update

Access accessory settings, such as Bluetooth pairing and voice changer
I did some research and found out this was helpful to very few people. I’d have to agree. Maybe the voice changer is pretty helpful but pretty much I found this to be the least useful part of the update.

View and manage downloads
I know I’m not the only one that got tired of having to wait for downloads to finish when they could be playing a game. I’m glad they added this so I can finally play Metal Gear Solid 4 and watch my Demo, add on, PSP etc downloads.

Quit game directly from an icon under the “Game” section of the XMB
So, basically the same as holding down the PS button and going to quit game. Not really that big of a deal in my honest opinion.I do not see why they advertised this as a main feature of the update.

Search the web using the Google Search option under “Network”
I liked being able to do this. So I don’t have to go to the browser, then put in Google then search. It’s a lot faster for me. May not be a big deal to some but to others (like myself) it is.

Launch directly into another game from the one you’re currently playing
At first I thought this might be from retail game to retail game. Without having to quit the game I’m in. Then eject then start another up. I was disappointed to discover that it was only going from PSN to retail and vice versa. Nice feature but for someone like me who rarely plays PSN games it was quite useless.

Play music tracks stored on the HDD (in games that support this feature)
Okay, Now I was really excited for this. Thought I could run around blasting some of my favorite songs while blasting soldiers and bosses in MGS4. Popped in MGS4 and instantly my hopes were crushed like Godzilla wreaking havoc on Japan. I guess there will be one day for when I can use this happily but for now I am disappointed.

Now I’d like to talk about something that kind of bugged me about the update. This quote game straight from PSN Director, Eric Lempel.

Will In-Game XMB come up during playback of PS2 games, Blu-Ray discs, and DVDs?
Eric said that “The XMB is an exclusive feature for PS3 game titles. Accessing the XMB during gameplay was the top request from our users” and “However, we continually engage PS3 owners for feedback and will evaluate the opportunity to offer XMB access during movie playback in the future.”

Now I honestly think they could have gone that extra mile and done at least DVD/Blu Ray XMB. PS2 I see no point but not having XMB in the movies is kind of lazy in my eyes.

Closing Statement:

All in all I was impressed but I was unimpressed by the new firmware update. The pros don’t outweigh the cons.So that’s really why I think it was a “failure”. I really feel that Sony could have waited and perfected some problems plus added a few key things that would have made me extremely impressed. The biggest problem I have with the new update is that it seems rushed and that it destroyed my Pain. I do like how the XMB doesn’t feel as cluttered and somewhat as sloppy as the Xbox Dashboard and isn’t as bland and in all honestly useless as the Wii Channels. While PS3 can take some ques from 360 and Wii. 360 and Wii can take some from PS3.


Playstation Access Diseñado por Wpdesigner y adaptado por Zona Cerebral