212: The War Continues

The War Continues

In the war for the hearts and minds of videogame enthusiasts, Sony and Microsoft have increasingly turned their attention to the battleground of online services. But while their objective of living-room supremacy may be the same, their strategies are remarkably different. Tom Endo interviews the directors of Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network about their services' competing philosophies.

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Interesting article.
Now, I do not own a 360, but I do have my PS3. So, I can only comment on PSN.
I think that PSN does have a chance to come out on top, but it will be an uphill battle against the LIVE name. I can, from PSN, get some TV shows and movies, along with games to play. I also like the fact that many of them are not just rehashes of classic games (but it does have those), but they have some fresh ideas.
As for digital distribution, I don't see the PS3 utilizing it for most PS3 games in the future. Mainly because of the huge size of some of the games. If games start filling up the Blu-Ray discs, My 30gig HDD will not be able to hold many.
The PS3 can interface with any PC, accessing the PC's media. But you have to have a different media server software than WMP. I use WinAmp and I can access my entire music and video collection from my PS3.
But I think that Sony could stir up interest for PSN if they released a kit that allows users to create their own games, like MS's XNA.

Microsoft has begun the thrice-cursed process of loading ads for random products right onto the Xbox dashboard, and for this they must pay. I didn't mind so much when they were game-related ads, but Telus phones? Seriously?

One thing they've done RIGHT with the Xbox, however, was quietly slotting in support for Xvid / DivX movie files a few years back. Smart move, keeps my 360 in use much more frequently.

I personally think that, no matter which comes out on top, the next few gaming years will be very interesting. Who agrees?

In the struggle for innovation, they're gonna have to shell out as many original and fun titles as possible.

One thing they've done RIGHT with the Xbox, however, was quietly slotting in support for Xvid / DivX movie files a few years back. Smart move, keeps my 360 in use much more frequently.

True, for me time--used-wise it's almost on par with gaming.

Another great article.

I enjoy the indie content I can get on my ps3, just as I enjoy the slick multiplayer service of LIVE.

In the end, it doesn't matter who is on top today or tomorrow, as long as they both continue to compete with each other to bring us the best experiences the industry has to offer.

You'd have to be pretty strong to actually hold a PS3 like that, anyone else notice?

It's called Hulu. Much like Netflix, first company to get it working quickly and easily wins.

And both networks could use an interface overhaul. If your means of advertising revolve around me ignoring an icon as I flip to the game or show I want to watch, you're probably in trouble. The service that can figure out a way to keep me online fidgeting with videos and demos instead of just getting bored is the one that will win out in the end.

I've thought for a while now that digital downloads were the way of the future for gaming. My list of purchased games in my Steam account has grown monstrously massive over the years. I can't comment much on Live since I sold my xbox ages ago, but I remember happily downloading a few xbox original titles from it. PSN is great as well. I love that I can share the same account on my PS3 and PSP...and the fact that I can literally put Final Fantasy 7 in my pocket and play it in line at the grocery store has won my heart for all eternity.

Not that I would risk someone stealing my PSP by playing it in line at a grocery store of course...I'm just saying...I COULD if I WANTED to. And that makes PSN awesome.

wont happen till all broadband packages are unlimited download & digital marketplaces support the resale of games. & even then, they'll still need to make physical products if they ever want to expand into markets outside of North America, Japan & West Europe

Not this again.

So long as I cannot resell, trade, borrow, rent, or even be assured that I can play the games offline without worrying about licensing (newsflash: the internet is not 100% reliable, and there are enough times when I cannot maintain a stable connection to a live gaming service to make this an issue), there's no way I'll go all-digital for my games. And issues like limited hard drive storage (Xbox is far worse than PlayStation in this regard, having an overpriced 120GB as its largest option whereas the PS3 can essentially take any hard drive you throw at it) make it worse, combined with the uncertainty that the game you "buy" will always be there (three games I know of have disappeared from Xbox Marketplace so far, due to licensing).

I'll keep my shiny discs, thank you.

I am telling you Guys, the Virtual Boy 2.0 is the wave of the future!

L.B. Jeffries:
It's called Hulu. Much like Netflix, first company to get it working quickly and easily wins.

Yeah, but you have to actually buy a console to get the network, so how the consoles sell will also play a factor. ost people probably wouldn't go buy a new console simply for the network it offers.

Personally, I'm getting deja vu, with MS and Sony fighting over something that people consider the next big advancement in gaming while Nintendo is cmpletely ignored. You can't give up retail space until the mainstream has abandoned it, because otherwise you are going to be hard pressed to find new customers. The closest we will get to a digital distribution world is the simultanious release of games in stores an on-line.

Personally, I think the winner is going to be the one who finds out how to sell digital games on places other than their consoles and be able to provide a demo for each game.

If I read the article right, MS and Sony are waiting for consumers to get over their distrust of digital delivery? That's going to take quite a while. As much as I like digital delivery and services like Steam, there's the nagging doubt that these services won't exist forever; if I buy something in digital form, I'd like the guarantee that I'll still be able to "own" it 5, 10, 15 years down the line. That's the real reason people prefer retail and box copies: it's something they can hold and touch, something that says, "Yes, this is yours, use it whenever you like."

Please god no. All digital means we pay Sony and Microsoft's mark-ups for even the oldest of games. I got Assassin's Creed and Mass Effect at least a year ago for like $12 each at Entertainmart. Microsoft's games on demand is still charging about $20 for each to this day. I'm sorry, but the majority of today's games are not worth $60, and if these gaming giants have their way, they'll be charging that same $60 a year after the release of said games. Especially if there is no alternative to buying from them.

Hell. Yes.

I love Steam, and its delivery system. PSN works essentially the same way, and so does XBL from what I can tell so far (well, more or less, unless you count the Microsoft points BS and all that). Don't have to worry about screwing up hard copies, don't need to back them up, etc, etc. Sounds great.

I am telling you Guys, the Virtual Boy 2.0 is the wave of the future!

oh god, the Virtual Boy. I remember renting that back in the day from a video store. It did have Wario Land which kicked alot of ass. To bad it's on Virtual boy.


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