10:23 am PT:
We're en route to Sony now, stay tuned! In the meantime, have you prepped your bingo card
? We haven't won yet this week
We're waiting outside the entrance. Tons of people in front of the entrance to the show. Veronica Belmont is getting tons of fan response for Qore. People are taking pictures with her.11:25:
We've just taken our seats at Sony's conference in front of what could only be described as a wall of screens: 7 main screens and roughly 64 smaller screens. OMG, Vaio LCD's everywhere. You'd think this was a Sony event.
Estranged Big Three execs Phil Harrison and Peter Moore spotted in the wild.
There's a couple players up front playing, from left to right: MGS4, PixelJunjk Eden, GT5: Prologue, SOCOM, Echochrome, and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. Number of smiling old people: 0. The players are most definitely not smiling.
SOCOM is looking fun. Lots of players on screen. Of course, the dude playing MGS4 has been staring at a cutscene since the moment we walked in.
Just chatted with Xbox's Aaron Greenberg – he's been following our liveblogs from his phone, so now he's totally reading this and thinking, "Whoa, meta."
Triangles, squares, and circles galore. We're at the right place apparently. FYIL It's 68 panels, not 64. Shots os last year's games: Uncharted, Haze... A video montage of some of PS3's biggest games – already out and upcoming. We're seeing Uncharted, Resident Evil 5, Little Big Planet, Buzz, MGS4, SOCOM, Resistance, Killzone 2. Not all PS3 games either – PSP and PS2 are making an appearance. It's the PlayStation "family" of products afterall, remember? They just showed off a shot of Bioshock, too!
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Jack Tretton. "Thanks for coming out everybody. I can't tell you how much fun we've had over the past several months putting together this press conference. The truth is: this is the most stressful event you can imagine. It's taken two years off of my life."
He's recounting all the famous events that happened on this stage. Tretton isn't bad as a stand-up comedy act. He recounts Jack Palance's one handed push-up: "And thanks to my job and my bi-annual workout regiment, you're not likely to see that here. But Jack Pallance is dead and I'm still here ..." -- *groans* -- "2008 is the year of the PS3, but as great as 2008 is, we're just getting started."11:41:
Says PlayStation is hitting its stride, finally. Just getting started. Just begun. Sounds like a bit of an excuse for the past couple years, eh? The seeds of the PlayStation brand were laid nearly 15 years ago this week
Says Tretton: "From the very beginning our customers came to expect something very different from us. What really made SCE different from the very beginning is we took a longer look ahead. When most companies were looking at a 3 to 5 year lifecycle, we were on a 10 year. Really hitting hard on the long product lifecycle thing, saying their consoles have at least a 10-year lifecycle. In other words: "Thanks for waiting."11:44:
GTA: SA came along in year 4. Shadow of the colossus in year 5, God of War 2 in year 7. Interesting that they mentioned Ico along with FFX and GTA. Not exactly a big seller (although it's one of our favorite games ever). IBM is actually using the CEll processor to power its newest supercomputer. He's mentioning FOlding@home numbers.
"If we stopped to ask consumers if they needed all this horsepower, they may have said no." He recalls Henry Ford's quote, "If I asked my customers what they wanted, they'd have said a faster horse. Games like MGS4 aren't just exclusive to the PlayStation 3, they're only possible on the PlayStation 3" 11:47:
Games like MGS4 on PS3 is a good reminder of what it means to have exclusive content. He says PS3 has more exclusives than any other platform. Wonder if he'll be avoiding Final Fantasy XIII today? Hey, we resemble this remark: Singstar brought about a lot of really bad singing to the PSN!
"I agree with what CNET and so many others have said in recent months: 2008 is the year of the PS3." Big-ass subwoofers in here at the beginning of Resistance 2. "Here's a look at the third-generation title from Insomniac games on the PlayStation 3: Resistance 2." Wow. Okay, yeah, that's one big boss. Seriously, this thing makes the Collossi in SotC look like puppy dogs
Demo end. *applause* Ted price from Insomniac on stage. "In 1951 we lost Chicago, millions never made it out. ... now Chicago is enemy territory." 350ft tall Chimera called Leviathan. "resistance 2 is a story of a country under siege, broken by a superior foe."
Okay, he's essentially reading us the game box back, but that's cool because he just told us about 8-player online co-op. "resistance 2 also breaks new ground with it's 8-player online co-op and 60 player online multiplayer ... While many games talk about scale, resistance 2 truly delivers." Scale, scale scale: This game is big, epic, etc. "resistance 2 offers more than any shooter in 2008 ... I'm Ted Price, president and CEO of insomniac games, and this is resistance 2." *cue the trailer*
The game is definitely more colorful than its predecessor. Less gray, more bright colors. Think 1950's America.11:56:
It has a definitely arc-deco feel. A bit like Bioshock but less...wet. Jack's back! "It's set to redefine the online experience" Ah here comes little big planet!11:57
: littlebig planet isn't just a new game, it's a whole new experience. It's the first time User Generated Content and social networking and gaming have come together. It's uniquely PlayStation. The motto "play, create, share" is all about user-generated content, social networking, and gaming. He's going after the non-gamer here, saying you can play it with your six year-old daughter.
Alex Evans, Media Molecule on stage. "Just think, if LBP can help me make E3 more "interesting, just think of what" it can do for gamers. Oh man, Sack Boy is taunting LA with his Celtics uniform! This is cute: they created their sales presentation as a LBP level! (Rather than a powerpoint)
: Best. Presentation. Ever. Okay this is disgustingly cute. Perhaps some distraction from the stats, but we're digging it. He's breaking down the sales numbers – it's still pretty dry, but we can't fault him for the presentation. "Starting in 2008, we'll engage in distribution in Latin America as well" PS3s and red peppers falling into a train on its way to Latin America!
: "Since 1995, PlayStation has generated more than $50b at retail" best SP3 games will be available at $29.99 retail Resistance, MotorStorm, Warhawk, Call of Duty 3, Fight Night, NFS: Carbon, RSV, and Assassin's Creed; Oblivion: Elder Scrolls, and Ninja Gaiden
"So Alex, what is the target consumer for LBP?" Sack boy gets into a truck that says "Little Big Planet" coming October 2008. Too cute. We're barfing in cute juice here. Alex: "I think it appeals to a wide range of people."
Jack: "Absolutely unlimited potential" "Great way to expand our PS3 user base beyond males and core gamers" Let's talk about PlayStation 2. (okay, let's!) "In many ways the success of PS2 has allowed us to be more aggressive" with PS3. In 2008 we're introducing more than 130 titles to PlayStation 2. Interesting that Sony is the only company here still talking about last-gen hardware, though.
Here's a sample of those titles: Yakuza 2, Force Unleashed, NCAA Football, Tiger Woods, Warriors Orochi 2, Singstar Pop vol. 2, Madden, Mercenaries 2: World in Flames. "The PS2, at $129, is a great entry into the phenomena of social gaming - ideal for playing with family and friends. "
The PS2 will not only come with Lego Batman the video game but animated movie Justice League for $149. So looks like Sony is all about "being connected". Talking about PSN now.12:09
: Starting this Fall, all PlayStation users will have a single sign-on. He's talking PC, PS3, etc. "They want us to work to make PSN the best gaming experience in the industry." Sweet - all PSN members will have a single sign-on (SSO), but we gotta wonder if those aliases will carry into games -- do we still need a separate name for MGS4? Resistance? Separate friends lists? Do tell!
Tretton's PSN name is DoctorGrip120? Add him! He's talking PlayStation Store update. "Just last month we had more than 20m pieces of content download, now at 180m pieces downloaded (since Nov. 2006) I'd like to introduce you all to Ratchet and Clank Future, Quest for Booty. QFB is a new concept -- it's a shorter game at a lower price." Shorter, cheaper... just an expansion, in other words?
"Quest for Booty is a continuation of R&C Future" Ah, we get to find out what happened to Clank after he was taken away from us at the end of Future. Light and dark gameplay, answers about Clank's mysterious disappearance. "Great introduction into what R&C is all about" Wait... is this the Insomniac briefing or Sony briefing? This summer, for $14.99 You don't always have to choose between quality and quantity, you can have both (re: PSN games) ZING!
"I'd like to show you what I mean" FAT Princess looks like a funny PSN downloadable game. Titles: R&C: QFB, Crash Commando, Fat Princess (this looks like Castle Crashers!), PixelJunk Eden (of course), Pain: Amusement Park, Flower, Siren: Blood Curse (ZOMBIES!), RagDoll KungFu: Fists of Plastic (Media Molecule!) (some breakouts on some of those)
"Great entertainment for about the cost of a movie ticket." Depends on where you live, we guess. Polyphony Digital and GTTV. 'pay-per-view distribution" of automotive shows "footage from racing events around the world"
So GT's producer is basically doing a TV show now for PSN. Which, if you're into cars, is cool. Watch Yamamachi (spelling?) go around the world and check out dope cars
We can't help but think he should be working on GT on PSP, no? Content will be available starting August 1
"just one more example of original programming on PlayStation Network. gamers today are in it for the community experience" Here come trophies... "This brings us to PlayStation Home"
I absolutely assure you that when Home is available through out Public Beta," absolutely worth it He's thanking us for being patient. Game-specific spaces, like Uncharted and Warhawk, available to check out here. Non-gaming partners like Nike. Resistance space has Chimera in tanks -- gross! Looks like game-themed rooms are coming to Home - we just saw a Resistance-themed room with Chimera on display in tubes.
Very pleased to unveil the movie/tv download service "This isn't just about Sony content" "PSN's video delivery service is open for business for all studios" Sony, Fox, MGM, Lions Gate, Warner, Disney, Paramount, Turner, Funimation.
Standard and High-def rental and sell-through TV starts at $1.99. offering both rental and sales. 9.99-14.99 for purchases, 2.99 to 3.99 for rentals, "this content is portable" download on PS3, bring on PSP "put on multiple devices at the same time" Eric Lempel is taking the stage to walk us through it.
He's got his hotmail address on the screen -- we're totally going to email him later. New tab in the PlayStation store that says video. it should be familiar to anyone using the PlayStation store today. There's a lot more room for movie studios, wink wink. "also, screen changes to give you a nice branded experience for that" studio. SD rental is $2.99 100 minute = 1565 MBs. preview pops-up, and you can full-screen it
No subtitles, at least for the movie being shown. incorporated progressive downloads so a user can watch a minute after starting the download. You can sort by genre. Cloverfield, HD rental is $5.99. SD purchase is $14.99 (which is the limit -- no HD purchases?) You can get all the same content on the PC PlayStation Store, and sync to PSP
"You can also use video-out feature to share with others. The interface is very slick, a definite improvement over the Xbox Live Marketplace." Whoah, movies coming tonight! Party in our room, bring the popcorn! "The video store will be available tonight!"
Let's talk a little bit more about PSP Last year we introduced the PSP Slim and sales shot through the roof. This fall we'll be introducing a new entertainment pack -- starting in October they're offering R&C Size Matters with a silver PSP, 1GB Memory Stick, National Treasure 2, and a voucher for Echochrome all for $199
Here to introduce a new title for PSP. Resistance Retribution. Nathan Hale coming to PSP, OMGWTFBBQ. Third person shooter. Spring 2009 release. "we've had great success with games for PSP and we're only going to improve on that trend."
Highlights for PSP over the next year: Star Wars, Madden, LocoRoco, NBA, a new Lego franchise, Patapon 2, Buzz quiz game with ad-hoc play
We've always felt the PSP is the key to Sony owning the living room. This is every bit the hybrid device that we've always imagined. People continue to move from their office to their living room, and now that people can download movies through the PS3, this is the reality that we're building between the PSP and the PSN. With titles everyone wants to watch and play, we're proud to be leading the charge to the living room. Now let's get back to the PS3.
Developers like working with us because we've embraced multiplatform. For instance, Google likes working with us. If you hit a homerun in MLB The Show, you can save that video to Google and have it voted on by the community. As Kaz Hirae announced in Tokyo, we're geared up to allow people to see live news, weather, and webcam feeds via Life with PlayStation, which will be available by the end of the month.
Last April we announced that Sony Online joined us, and we welcome them today. Today for the first time ever, we'll show DC Universe online. Proud to introduce Jim Lee, director of DC Universe Online.
He gets on the floor and does a one-handed pushup!! Yeah, big deal, Lee ... we could totally do that too if we wanted to. We've been building this world up from scratch, and I'm actually a bit winded and anxious.
It's total gang warfare: Microsoft couldn't get Marvel Universe Online out the door, but here's Sony and DC Universe Online. "This is really a dream project for me. When I was a kid, my parents wanted me to become a doctor and follow in my father's footsteps. Meanwhile, I wanted to read comic books, and even started my own comic book like. As far as my other obsession? I remain an avid gamer today -- hooked on MMOs and even started playing Everquest on launch day. I was the first Paladdin to get fire avenger." (People laughing) "No, it sounded cool at the time!" (Laughing turning to applause) Switching back
Imagine being able to create your own superhero or supervillain in the DV universe and fight alongside help batman take on the joker . Imagine being a villain and helping all the inmates at Arkham Aslyum espace and attack the batcave. (We're hearing "imagine" a lot. We're imagining lunch. But this game looks cool so we'll wait.)
It's certainly a project that would have made my 12-year old brain explode. This game seriously has every DC star. Craziness Could this be the first good game involving Superman? Tretton is back: Jack: "Great content and one-handed pushups. I've seen it all now ... we continue to work hard to increase the value proposition for consumers"
Starting in September, the 80GB will have the current functionality of the 40GB PS3, for $399. Whoah. 80GB for $399. So $50 more than the 60GB 360. Interesting. Add an XBL membership to your 360 and they're the same price. (What happens to the 1/2 backwards compatible 80GB now?)
Montage of folks talking PS3. Thinking about lunch again. We're watching videos of developers being interviewed. Treyarch dev, Tiburon dev, Ubisoft Far Cry 2 dev, Bethesda (Fallout dev), Prince of Persia dev. Fallout 3 developer was saying that the SPUs "eat everything alive" Amazing -- everyone is just talking about how it used to be much tougher, but they're all getting used to it now.
Ben Mattes says the Blu-ray is way better than the competition. Long term PlayStation 3 development: This all sounds similar to the PS2 development cycle. Dev's hated it and then learned to love the pain. Ironically, though, these are mostly cross-platform games that won't really take advantage of the Cell structure. Jack: "as you can see there's a tremendous amount of support from our development partners" SCE worldwide studios makes a competitive advantage - 23 exclusives, 10 on Blu-ray and 13 on PSN12:53:
They're pumping smoke in here, either to confuse us or make this all seem like a dream. First mention of Killzone 2, which has been suspiciously absent so far. LittleBigPlanet, MotorStorm: Pacific Rift, MGS4, Guns of the Patriots, Quantum of Solace, SOCOM Confrontation, Ghostbusters: The Video Game, Soul Calibur IV, Resistance 2, The Agency, Naruto Storm, Mirror's Edge, Resident Evil 5, Singstar, Guitar Hero World Tour, NBA09: The Inside, Buzz Quiz TV, Killzone 2
I'd like to spend the next few moments to show you what's to come after this holiday season. God of War 3 is coming to PlayStation 3 (SURPRISE!) (Applause for GOW3) Really nice graphics, but a total CGI trailer. No gameplay, all cinematics. Cool?
We're about to see what Sucker Punch has been up to this whole time with Infamous. With infamous, you roam an open world as a superhero, putting you in a position to ... save or destroy an entire city.
He can climb, jump, throw dudes, and shoot electricity out of his mitts. So infamous is coming in Spring 2009. This is gonna be a long winter. "You've all seen multiplayer online games, you've all played massively multiplayer games" Jack says even this will push the PS3 hardware.
Andy Beaudoin from Zipper interactive. MAG = Massive Action Game. Zipper building on their experience from SOCOM. Buh. 256-player battles. We certainly hope this handles voice chat well. "MAG will deliver a sweeping battle experience using only real players" 8-player squads. lead by people who are "proven" to be good leaders, character advancement tree to fine-tune your character.
Groundbreaking large scale combat, intimacy of 8-player squad combat, and character growth1:02:
First glimpse video, here we come! This game will either be complete chaos or completely amazing.
So far just a FMV trailer... Looks like a giant SOCOM, which makes sense... Vehicles? Looks like there may be. Air combat with air drops of reinforcements? (? = we're not sure, but trailer alludes to it) "It's hard to imagine that all of this could have come out of a meeting in a Sony Computer conference room fifteen years ago."1:06:
(Jack is back, touting the 10-year development cycle, wrapping up) "If this is what year 2 of the PS3 lifecycle looks like, imagine what years 3 and beyond will look like."
And..... lights up. Thanks to the people behind us for not shutting up the entire presentation, by the way! Additional reporting by Joshua Fruhlinger.