Well I made it to the Sony Press Conference / Launch of the Playstation 3.
I took a few pictures, just to give you a different perspective.
Here's the line outside Sudio 15 as we all went in to see the presentation.
There were lots of interesting folk there, I saw Hideo Kojima, David Jaffe, here's Jamil Moledina the head of the Game Developers Conference.
So once inside, the press were all setting up their cameras.
The way a Sony press conference works is there's some key players...
For Business / Sony Corporate direction, there's Kaz.
For Game Development and Technology (and duck humor), there's Phil Harrison.
For Sony Hardware Vision, there's Ken Kutaragi
For Sony Marketing, there's Andrew House
Andrew had an easy time, this was all about games, so he didn't even take the stage.
So my main comments are as follows.
(1) I went to the PS2 technical developer conference, the hardware inside the PS3 is unbelievable. Just like past machines it will be years before anyone can ever say they are even close to the limits of that hardware.
(2) The demos I saw, were a range of good and some weak (as always), I will be posting my list of games that are MUST buys at launch. Interestingly the real concern is can they produce 4 or 5 must buys, that's what really matters. One or two is not enough. The good news is, it's gonna be easy to make a list.
(3) The controller was a fantastic move. It's a little confusing as the controller with the PS3 can only supply relative coordinate changes, meaning the controller does not know where it is in the air as it's got no fixed base. So it's can't point for example. That said, it's great for another input for designers to get creative with. (And they will.)
(4) The price is high, but that doesn't worry me too much as they will get it down, what makes no sense is the extra, $100 for 40 extra gigabytes. I wish they had just gone with $549 and given everyone the same drive. Secondly, they shouldn't have announced the price as it gives Nintendo and Microsoft something to point at. The audience didn't need a price, so if it were me, I would have waited until after E3.
(5) I'm tired of seeing developers come on stage at press conferences and gush about hardware. It's kinda meaningless and takes time, I prefer to see them just play their game well so we see the best bits. It amazed me how random the demo-ing ability was on stage. I love Gran Turismo, but I HATED the way that demo was handled. They actually managed to make the game look bad at certain points by choosing stupid camera angles and lingering on shortcuts (like cardboard cutout people.) It was an extremely amateur way to show such a stunning piece of software. They also showed this first, giving it the most time. I think a nice tight demo of that would not just have saved time, it would also have left people's jaws on the floor. ARGH!
The other demos were good too. My favorite was Heavenly Sword.
Phil Harrison had called me and asked me to do a singing competition on stage with their new Singstar game for Playstation 3. I can't sing worth a damn, but I agreed (for fun.)
Just before the event, during rehersals they had to change the plans and so they cut the singing compeition. (Thank goodness.)
Anyway, overall I enjoyed the press conference. I went to see the PS3 games running and that's what Sony delivered. Many other people have complained that it was boring. (I guess they needed to hear me sing!)
Oh, one last thing, they also showed the eye-toy being used for a card game. I love innovation and these guys are clearly having fun. It was called - The Eye of Judgement
(Check out the E3 Tech Demo video)