Late Night Consoling

By Chris Remo, Feb 27, 2006 8:20pm PST Okay, here we go.
  • PS3 Delayed? Here We Go Again

    [ps3]

    The funny thing about all these debates over whether the PS3 is delayed or not is that we still have no idea when it's actually supposed to launch in the first place. We have "spring," but there's no territory assigned to that, and that's a pretty broad window anyway. That said, there is new news suggesting that the PS3 may, in fact, be delayed. This time, it comes straight from Sony itself, so it's probably worth noticing.

    A Sony Computer Entertainment representative told the Japanese media that due to problems with the Blu-ray specifications, the PS3 may very well miss its "spring" release date. Enterbrain president Hirozaku Hamamura noted that since Sony has not yet begun taking retailer orders for the system, it is unlikely will ship by May--ie, the boundary of the spring deadline. Enterbrain publishes Famitsu and other Japanese gaming publications, and is also a leading source of Japanese sales numbers for games and gaming hardware. The article indicates that the PS3 is more likely to be launched in the late fall in both North America and Japan. This would be a tough move for Sony, given the number of units that would have to be produced to take advantage of holiday season demand. That said, the company certainly isn't looking to hand that lucrative sales period in two major territories over to Microsoft and, assuming Revolution is launched on time, Nintendo.

  • Xbox Lite? Xboy? XBP?

    [xbox]

    About a month ago, Microsoft Xbox PR man Peter Moore spoke with Business Week on the possibility of Microsoft entering the portable media hardware market. He said that any attempt Microsoft makes in that regard would very likely make use of the Xbox brand, even if the device in question is not a completely game-centric device. You may also recall origamiproject.com, a viral marketing website that popped up last week.

    It looks like those two things may in fact be related, in perhaps only a tangential way. The Internet uncovered a video this weekend hosted on the website of film studio Digital Kitchen. The video is has since been removed but was mirrored elsewhere. It depicts Origami, a Microsoft device that apparently has tablet PC functionality and various types of media capability. There is also a brief shot of a man enthusiastically playing Halo. However, the machine is probably not actually playing a portable version of Bungie's shooter; if anything it would be simply the PC version running, but more than likely it is just video footage. Neither the device nor the promotional video had any Xbox branding, but it turns out the video is a year old, far predating Peter Moore's interview. Still, regardless of whether it takes the Xbox name or not, it is almost certain that the device will not be heavily slanted towards gaming. It doesn't seem quite set up for it from a control perspective, and it would seem to be a bit overambitious from a marketing perspective. I guess we'll find out on Thursday when the machine is planned to be unveiled.

  • Prince of Persia: Screenwriter of Time

    [ps2] [xbox] [gamecube]

    Hollywood trade publication Variety reports on actual progress being made with the previously announced Prince of Persia: Sands of Time (PS2, Xbox, GCN, PC) film adaptation. The movie, produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, will receive a "scriping overhaul" by Jeffrey Nachmanoff. Nachmanoff's only prior feature film credit is the 2004 disaster flick The Day After Tomorrow. There is still no director announced, nor a cast, but the two currently-attached names don't exactly fill me with bounds of confidence.

  • Midway Announces PSP Lineup

    [psp]

    Midway today announced its 2006 lineup for Sony's PSP, which consists of the following three games:

    - NBA Ballers: Rebound. The NBA Ballers series is coming to a portable for the first time. The game, which allows players to create a player with custom clothing and jewelry, allows 1v1 as well as 1v1v1 via local wireless multiplayer.
    - Rush. The Rush series of arcade-style racers comes to PSP complete with 36 different vehicles. It includes a story mode set in the city of Los Angeles and 1v1 local wireless multiplayer.
    - Mortal Kombat: Unchained. You've probably heard of Mortal Kombat. Well, now you've heard of it on PSP. The game apparently has an "innovative fighting system" designed to take advantage of wireless multiplayer. It also includes exclusive characters for the PSP version.

    Press release

  • Mega Man Battles His Sixth Network

    [gba]

    Okay, never mind that headline, I don't actually know what I meant with that. The point is, Capcom has announced Mega Man Battle Network 6 for Game Boy Advance. Like other entries in the spinoff series, the game will come in two editions. Named Cybeast Gregar and Cybeast Falzar, the two versions refer to the ancient beasts around which each game is based. The versions contain different abilities and combinations of abilities for Mega Man to acquire.

    Both versions of the game go on sale in the second quarter of 2006. - Press release.

  • Misc. Q&As/Features

    1UP has the full version of an edited interview originally published in EGM with Christopher Gans, the director of the upcoming Silent Hill film, and Akira Yamaoka, the composer for the film and games. Gans' responses are excellent, and he truly seems to understand games and what is necessary to adapt a video game to film. Fingers crossed for his adpatation.

    GameZone speaks with Nintendo's Erik Peterson about the 2D platformer Drill Dozer (GBA).

Misc. Media/Previews

PS2

IGN has impressions of Kojima Productions' Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence (PS2).

Xbox/X360

1UP previews Indie Built's Top Spin 2 (X360, also DS, GBA). IGN checks out the Xbox 360 version of DICE's Battlefield 2: Modern Combat (X360, also PS2, Xbox) (so does Game Informer).

GameCube

1UP checks out Monolith's Baten Kaitos II (GCN).

Portable

IGN goes hands on with Capcom's Mega Man Powered Up (PSP).

Multi

GameSpy previews EA's The Godfather (PS2, Xbox, X360, PSP, PC).

Console Game Of The Evening [Submit Yours!]

Sonic Spinball for the Sega Game Gear. "It was Sonic as a pinball. It's the best idea since chocolate was added to milk" (submitted by chrono_triggr)

Click here to comment...

Comments

16 Threads* | 76 Comments

  • So sick of all this PS3 rumored delay BS. Ignoring that a specific release date has never been mentioned...

    Who is this unnamed spokesperson? Since when does a spokesperson, speaking an behalf of a company, remain anonymous? This story (the one referenced in the Shack blurb) seems like a rehash of the same story that has been floating around for the last few days (i.e. the Merill Lynch crap) with the addition of the Enterbrain info (which is interesting but not necessarily indicative of anything).

    I would wager that if there is any authenticity to the unnamed spokesman it is really just a Sony employee who might not really be privy to the company's full PS3 plan, schedule, or status. Would a they even go on record with such talk, considering it might get them fired :)?

    Further I'd wager that the Blu-ray problems mentioned by said "spokesman" refer to the delays in the AACS finalization process which were extant at the time the "spokesman" was asked for comment. The delay issues were RESOLVED (as far as current gen players are concerned) on or around the 17th of Feb; in time for several of the companies concerned to make their recently announced product introduction deadlines (which happen to be spring ones).

    See:
    http://www.cdfreaks.com/news2.php?ID=13083
    http://www.videobusiness.com/index.asp?layout=article&articleid=CA6308373
    and
    http://www.aacsla.com/press/

    The delays sounded like they were more about what features will be switched on in early machines (no MMC) rather than anything hardware engineering related. One could speculate that certain members of the AACSLA created delays to inconvenience certain other members of the group but that would be conspiracy talk ;).

    I haven't seen a credible shred of evidence that indicates a 'delay' to whatever plan Sony has for the introduction of the PS3. Will it come out later than Spring? Maybe, but every day that goes by and Sony doesn't waver from their position that it will ship in Spring, lends more credibility in my mind. I don't see SCE as the Valve of hardware manufacturers. They may inflate the software side of things but they don't lie right up to a release date for hardware. If there were a hardware delay I believe we'd here about it from a credible source within Sony. With GDC and E3 coming, they'd have little to lose (in acknowledging a delay), since they could use those events to create delayed purchase anticipation if needed (stalling xbox360 purchases if they care, which I don't think they do).

    In fact I might as well put my release theory up right here. Ever hear of R'U' (red)E? (rhetorical I hope). Well the E in E3 is usually red (or at least it was) and the 3, well that doesn't need explanation does it? May is in Spring. So I think they are going to bomb the world with the PS3 the week of E3. Just release it bam, but of course there will be leaks from GDC on down. I can think of good counters to every reason put forth this scenario shouldn't happen but I haven't seen (as I said) any compelling evidence why it can't. Of course I'd be a fool if I didn't admit I might be wrong, but how many units do you really need for a spring launch anyway?

    Regardless, the delay speculation is just that, but at least someone should come up with better reasoning and some real evidence. It sucks seeing the stock dip on his kind of crap (though I suppose it makes for an opportunity if you didn't get in earlier, hmmm).