Monday, March 31, 2008

Revamped PS3 Store "will no longer use the PS3 web browser"

The revamped PlayStation 3 Store "will no longer use the PS3 web browser", a Sony source has told Eurogamer.

Due to launch in mid-April, the Store features a slick new front-end and our source says it's an improvement in other areas too.

"It will cache all images properly and is much faster than the old one," he says.

We were also told that the Store "will require everyone to upgrade to 2.30 [firmware]," which Sony has yet to talk about publicly.

The new Store, officially confirmed earlier today, was drawn up in response to feedback from the PAL PS3 community.

Sony plans to launch it in mid-April and will not be updating the Store with new content until it has done so.


Friday, March 28, 2008

New look PS Store advertised on PS Store

We know that a new look PlayStation Store is coming, but seeing that Sony Europe are so sporadic with their updates it is nice to know that they seem aware of it too. The first news of the store update was confirmed earlier this month by John Hight, but now it seems Sony are happy enough to publicly promote its arrival on their service. As such, they have launched a new advertising banner proclaiming that a “Great new look” will “coming soon.” The banner is not clickable, so no further info was revealed on when it may be coming or what new features it may bring.

GT5: Prologue now live on PSN

The game’s now up on the European PSN and is available for download.

GT5: Prologue was supposed to release yesterday on PS3’s online service, but was delayed due to 'technical' problems, according to a statement issued by SCEE earlier today.

The wait’s over, anyway. Go fetch, assuming you haven’t bought the disc out of wild frustration at not being able to download it at midnight last night.

360 and PS3 rocket during bumper Easter

PS3 leading year-to-date sales battle with 360; Sony and Microsoft consoles see over 70 per cent sales boost.

The race between Xbox 360 and PS3 shifted up a notch this past week as both consoles saw huge leaps in hardware sales, thanks to the Easter break.

Though PS3 is still outselling 360 regularly week-on-week and in terms of year-to-date sales, the Sony and Microsoft platforms both saw a 73 and 78 per cent rise in hardware sales respectively this week.

Nintendo’s mega-selling Wii and DS also saw significant rises, despite stock concerns.

ChartTrack data obtained by MCV suggests that the Easter break also saw a significant boost for software sales as parents and school kids rushed to the High Street to snap up the latest releases.

"Week 12 fell during Easter so we saw software and hardware up across the board," ChartTrack director Dorian Bloch told MCV.

"PS3 and Xbox 360 are pretty much neck and neck at the moment, with PS3 slightly ahead. Software was up, and the formats that Rainbow Six Vegas 2 appeared on did especially well".

Retailer activity, particularly from Dixons and Argos, have boosted already strong PS3 sales – and there’s more to come, said Bloch.

"The release of GT5 Prologue and its bundle will see a further rise on PS3 after its release. PS3 has been outselling Xbox 360 for some time, but last week they were pretty close. In terms of sales so far this year, PS3 is ahead".

But it’s not over yet – a split Easter period means that the sales bonanza will continue into next week, added Bloch. "Some schools are on holiday so next week will be similar, as there are a lot of product slated for March 28th. We’ve seen bumper sales this week and we can expect the same for next week".


360 - Up 78 per cent
PS3 - Up 73 per cent
Wii - Up 37 per cent
DS - Up 32 per cent
PSP - Up 10 per cent


'Technical difficulties' hold up GT5 Prologue PSN

Sony has told Eurogamer that "last minute technical difficulties" are to blame for the absence of yesterday's expected PlayStation Store update.

Gran Turismo 5 Prologue was supposed to go on sale, alongside a demo of UEFA Euro 2008 according to EA, and the new Grand Theft Auto IV trailer.

"Unfortunately due to some last minute technical difficulties, we were unable to publish the new content to the PS Store yesterday," Sony told us just now.

"We are working to resolve these issues and will let you know as soon as new content is posted".

The platform holder has not said whether or not we will see the update today or later. So fans of GT might want to go outside in the rain and buy the Blu-ray version instead.


GT5 Prologue misses PSN launch date

Gran Turismo 5 Prologue appears to have missed its March 27th PlayStation Network launch date, with the game unavailable from Sony's PAL store at the time of writing.

Speculation grew as the day wore on with no new files that Sony was holding off until it was possible to include the new Grand Theft Auto IV trailer - the embargo on that was 10pm - but as the hour came and went still the storefront remained unchanged.

In fact, a big fat nothing has gone up on PSN overnight, despite us staying up until our eyes bled, and Sony hasn't said anything to the press yet, or on the European PS3 forums, where people are not very impressed.

GT5 Prologue had been due to launch on PSN yesterday and should be out on Blu-ray today in Europe. Priced GBP 24.99, it has 71 cars and six tracks, but offers many hours of awesomeness thanks to an extensive single-player mode and new Euro-specific Quick Tune feature that allows you to extend the life of the game by customising car settings to power past the opposition.

You can read much more about all that, and the game's promised online options and swanky visuals, in our Gran Turismo 5 Prologue PAL review, and hopefully pick it up on Blu-ray today - saving yourself a nearly 2GB download and potentially a couple of quid if you shop around.

Elsewhere on the PS3 Store this week we were promised a UEFA Euro 2008 demo, with EA oblivious to any kind of delay to the PSN schedule when we spoke to them on Thursday afternoon.

Eurogamer are chasing Sony for an explanation and hope to have one later this morning.


Thursday, March 27, 2008

PSN hacked notice: There has been unauthorized access to user accounts of PS Store

Official European Playstation sites have posted a notice to users that there has been a possibility of unauthorized access to personal information on the PLAYSTATION Store through PCs. They are asking users to verify there account is intact by signing in to the PSN (if your pre-set password works you are unaffected).

Notice to PLAYSTATION®Network Users

We have found out that there has been a possibility of unauthorized access to personal information on the PLAYSTATION®Store through PCs, a content download service of the PLAYSTATION®Network. Although unlikely, it is possible that the passwords of a small percentage of PLAYSTATION®Network users may have been changed through unauthorized access, making it possible to view users’ personal information and/or use the Wallet for the PLAYSTATION®Store. PLAYSTATION Network accounts do not display entire credit card numbers, so any unauthorized access to your PLAYSTATION Network account is very unlikely to compromise your credit card number.

We have taken immediate measures to rectify this issue and system security is restored.

We have investigated the extent of unauthorized access and possible alteration of passwords that could have occurred before corrective measures were taken, and are directly contacting customers who may have been affected by this incident. In order to verify that your account is intact, we strongly suggest that PLAYSTATION®Network users sign in to the service. If you can successfully sign in with your pre-set password, your account is not affected by this incident.

For more information, please contact Customer Service.

Remember; do not disclose your log-in or password details on any email communications.


Wednesday, March 26, 2008

GT5: Kazunori Yamauchi Answers Five Questions On Prologue

Kazaunori Yamauchi talks to

More than 132 mln homes worldwide will own at least one Blu-ray device by 2012

Research and consulting firm, Strategy Analytics, latest published research has found that Sony’s PS3 games console will continue to drive the Blu-ray market until 2009, after which stand-alone Blu-ray players will become the dominant segment. By 2012 more than 132 million homes worldwide will own at least one Blu-ray device.

Press Release
The Blu-ray Disc victory in its recent format war with HD-DVD will propel this technology into 29.4 million homes worldwide by the end of 2008, according to the latest research published by the Strategy Analytics Connected Home Devices service. According to, "Blu-ray Devices: Forecasting Sales and Ownership," Sony’s PS3 games console will continue to drive the Blu-ray market until 2009, after which stand-alone Blu-ray players will become the dominant segment. By 2012 more than 132 million homes worldwide will own at least one Blu-ray device.

"HD-DVD’s withdrawal leaves the way open for Blu-ray to become a major revenue earner for technology vendors and content owners alike," says David Mercer, Principal Analyst. "The 265 million homes that will own an HDTV by 2012, and Hollywood’s need for a new growth engine, represent huge incentives for the industry to coordinate marketing activities and demonstrate unified support for the successor to DVD".

This Strategy Analytics report predicts that global sales of Blu-ray devices will reach 18.8 million units in 2008, including 4 million stand-alone players, 13 million consoles and nearly 2 million PCs. By 2012, annual sales of all BD devices will reach 57.4 million units. The largest market will be in Europe, with 26.4 million, followed by the US (22.6 million) and Japan (8.4 million).


Killzone 2, Resistance 2 and LittleBigPlanet dated

LBP and Killzone 2 in September with Resistance 2 to follow in November.

According to the latest Sony Computer Entertainment UK release schedule PlayStation 3 gamers will have plenty to keep them occupied this autumn, with three massive titles hitting stores.

Scheduled for release in September are LittleBigPlanet and Killzone 2, with Insomniac Games' launch title sequel, Resistance 2, pencilled in for a November release.

The titles are likely to go up against some heavy hitters from Microsoft, including Gears of War 2, Fable 2 and Banjo.


Killzone 2, Resistance 2 and LittleBigPlanet dated

LBP and Killzone 2 in September with Resistance 2 to follow in November.

According to the latest Sony Computer Entertainment UK release schedule PlayStation 3 gamers will have plenty to keep them occupied this autumn, with three massive titles hitting stores.

Scheduled for release in September are LittleBigPlanet and Killzone 2, with Insomniac Games' launch title sequel, Resistance 2, pencilled in for a November release.

The titles are likely to go up against some heavy hitters from Microsoft, including Gears of War 2, Fable 2 and Banjo.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Sony offers limited edition MGS4 wireless headphones

For those of us who like the occasional bit of collectible game-related kit, here's something that should get your collector's instincts flaring: the ultra-super-deluxe-limited-edition Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots 7.1 channel headphones.

Sporting the same gunmetal finish as the limited-edition SonyPS3 that's going hot in Japan, this baby is the Ferrari for your ears - that is, if you're lucky enough to get them. Which is about franking near impossible.

That's right. We weren't kidding when we strung together ultra, super, deluxe, and limited edition in front of this gadget's name. Only 30 of these babies - that's just as much as three tens - will be handed out randomly to those buying MGS4 bundles from the Japanese Konami store from now up to June 1.

That means there's no chance to it - either you get one or you don't, and you'll have to order a whole bundle for that very slim chance of getting one. And good luck finding it in any Internet auction sites - we doubt that anyone would want to let go of a pair of these. In any case, here's hoping we get a re-run over here (pretty please, Konami?).


Metal Gear Solid 4 limited edition already sold out in Konami Japan shop

Over at KonamiStyle of Japan, the Metal Gear Solid 4 limited edition bundle is already sold out! This should be a sign of things to come across all regions, so snap up the bundle as soon as you can if you are a die hard fan of the series!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Unreal Tournament 3 PS3 Patch Approaches

Epic's Jeff Morris has revealed the list of changes to be included in the first Unreal Tournament III Playstation 3patch, due for release on March 27th:

U.S. Only

  • Made compatible with Euro version (both are patched to the same level)
  • Fixed reversed ping sorting in server browser
  • Fixed some rare crashes (shutting down, saving with low HD space, AI, etc)
  • Fixed a client crash while connecting to server while server it switching maps
  • Minor rewordings of various messages
  • Fixed mutator mods to not be always loaded, only load mutators when needed
  • Added mod import verification for inter-mod package name conflicts
  • Fixed weapon/effect sorting in DM-Gateway snow
  • Fixed extraneous "Player" entries in campaign scoreboard
  • Fixed some getting stuck and outside the world bugs
  • No longer display "Player is on red/blue" messages in campaign
  • Fixed a Torlan bot pathing bug
  • Fix for too many custom characters causing texture corruption
  • Keyboard jump now does Smart Jump
  • Fix for tilt controlling player sometimes
  • Removed Warfare Score Limit of 0 in UI
  • Disabled 3d sound positioning on mission briefing sounds
  • Fixed exploits with ViewNextPlayer in rare cases
  • Fixed some HUD positioning bugs
  • Fixed a Darkwalker AI bug
  • Fixed some teleporter timing bugs
  • Fixed low-bandwidth, large player count connectivity

Europe & U.S.

  • Mods now on root of memory device, can download easier from PS3 web browser
  • Fixed VOIP quality issues
  • Fixed some headset connection issues
  • Added support for full character mods (heads/premade whole characters)
  • No longer need to reboot after importing a character mod to see it in menus
  • DLC no longer acts like a user mod (being listed in MyContent and causing disable mod crash dialog)
  • Fix for bootup and import slowdown with many mods installed
  • Add a VOIP icon when VOIP is active (button held down)
  • Fixes for corrupted the auto-mod-download cache
  • Fix for flickering auto-download text
  • Fix for getting stuck in multiplayer menu if you get in before gamespy connects
  • Fixed a mod problem with switching between mod and shipping maps with clients teleporting randomly
  • Fixed a mod problem with multiple gametype mods installed, only first one imported would work
  • Fixed Leviathan deploy icon
  • Bots now respect players feigning death (depending on bot skill level)
  • Bots now respect sandstorm "blindness"
  • Fix for bots picking linkgun mode
"The US version has more fixes included in this patch. This is because later release date of the European version allowed us to include them on the disc".


Possible Sony announcement on 'HOME' at ION 2008 Conference

Reading a press release this morning peaked my interest. The PR document was about the upcoming ION2008 Conference for Online virtual worlds, And guess who was on the list for speakers?

Craig Dalrymple
Senior Community Relations Manager

Robert Mitchell
Director of Technology

John Smedley

All of Sony Online Entertainment, Something to do with HOME? Possible Full Release date? We will wait and see.


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Study: Millions Will Buy Blu-ray In 2008

NPD study says the 'intent to buy' is growing.

Consumers are more likely to buy Blu-ray players now than ever before, according to a NPD Group consumer research survey, as reported by Video Business.

NPD reports that 10.8 percent of survey respondents said they would purchase a Blu-ray player in the next six months. (The survey was conducted during the week that ended February 20.)

Based on that number, the research company estimates that two million Blu-ray players could be sold in the next six months. (This is based on common assumptions that 25 percent of people who say they intend to buy something usually wind up doing so.)

To date, less than one million standalone Blu-ray players have been sold. (However, the Play Station 3, which has a Blu-ray player inside, has sold millions of units.)

NPD said consumers' "intent to buy" a Blu-ray player is the highest ever recorded since the high-def disc format was launched in the spring of 2006.

In the weeks prior to this survey, NPD says the 'intent to buy Blu-ray' numbers were 9.4 (Feb. 13), 8.9 (Feb. 6) and 8.3 (Jan. 30).

The increased interest in Blu-ray was likely triggered by news that Toshiba was considering pulling the plug on HD DVD, Blu-ray's rival, and ending the high-def format war between the two. Toshiba finally announced on February 19 that it was closing the HD DVD business.

While NPD acknowledges that the 'intent to buy' numbers do not suggest an explosion of Blu-ray sales, it says the increased interest is impressive considering this is the traditional down season in consumer electronics.

“This (increased interest) happened during a quiet part of the year after the Super Bowl, and there was bad weather for shopping," a NPD spokesman said, according to Video Business.


Sony talks leaked PSN list

Sony UK has issued a statement regarding the allegedly leaked list of PlayStation Network titles and release dates that's been doing the rounds on the Internet.

The list's most interesting highlights include something called Ratchet: Quest for Booty, which could be downloadable content for R&C PS3 or a PSN title in its own right. All manner of good stuff is promised for April, including new Lair, Super Stardust and WarHawk packs, plus a trailer for Resistance 2.

Something called The Last Guy also appears on the list, while a July release date is given for PlayStation Home.

Sony is declining to outright confirm or deny whether the list is genuine. However, the statement issued by the company certainly implies that while the document has come from SCEE, the information on it is subject to change.

"Internal working documents naturally have proposed dates against titles, but these change frequently and dates are not confirmed until issued as part of a press release or formal announcement," the statement reads. "The same applies to titles of games, which may be working titles or placeholders subject to later confirmation.

"As a result, no weight should be given to titles or dates that appear in this document, other than to those which have already been formally confirmed."

There's no point asking them just what Quest for Booty or The Last Guy are either: "We will not be commenting on any title mentioned that has not already been confirmed and/or given an official launch date." Ah well.


E3, PlayStation Home Launch Coincide?

You know, sometimes the biggest tips can come from the most unlikely places.

As you all know, PlayStation Home still doesn't have an official launch date, even though there has been plenty of speculation over the past few months. Sony has stayed silent on the issue, so just about everything you hear is rumor and gossip. There is the possibility that Home could be involved in the upcoming "huge announcement" at E3, but again, we're only guessing. We've contacted Sony several times about their promising online service, but we have always received the standard "no comment" response. However, they may have just let something slip- according to MaxConsole, several Spanish gaming sites have found an Excel file that shows SCEE's release schedule for the year. This document shows that PlayStation Home is slated for a July 2008 release.

Now, clearly, this only applies to Europe for the time being, considering it's an Excel file from SCEE (supposedly). However, we have to point out that something else happens in July: E3. So if we put two and two together, could it be that Sony's "huge" announcement at this year's E3 will be the official launching of PlayStation Home? We're only spitballing here, but think about it... We like the possibility!


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

More than 50 studios download Gamebryo for PS3

Development platform has been used in more than 200 titles

Emergent Game Technologies have announced that more than fifty PlayStation 3 game development studios have downloaded Gamebryo since its debut on PS3 DevNet on February 17.

The Gamebryo game development platform is downloadable in its full version for evaluation, prototyping and game creation.

"Emergent has done some real breakthrough work in creating technology that streamlines development, supports multiple genres and puts creative control back into the hands of PS3 development teams," said Emergent CEO Geoffrey Selzer.

"Gamebryo represents a refreshing, new approach to game development – one that brings to bare a flexible, modular, foundational platform that easily integrates with a studio’s proprietary technology, is consistent with current game developers' work flow, and maximizes SPUs of PS3.

"This empowers game developers to make their own creative mark with each title in any genre".

Gamebryo ships with 3,500 pages of fully indexed, searchable documentation, and developers who download it from PS3 DevNet will have access to the Emergent technical support team with representatives located in North America, Europe and Asia.

Gamebryo has been used in more than 200 games titles including The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and the Fallout 3 and Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning.


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Haze Being Offered For Free In The US/Canada

Well, kind of free, eh?

Gamestops in the US and Canada have been sending out flyers to inform those interested in Haze that they can basically get the game free upon release. There is a catch, though, as they'll have to bring the game back after a week, and will receive in-store credit instead of their actual money back.

The flyer (which you can see below) states that those who put down their money for the game early will be given the offer to return the game after a week's play for a full refund in store credit to spend on another arguably better title in the future. Gamestop will, of course, hope that many forget to bring the game back on time thus meaning gamers will be out of pocket, and they instead will be rolling in extra cash thanks to the high amount of pre-orders they should garner from this offer.

We have yet to hear what Free Radical or Ubisoft think of this, and we still don't even know if Haze will be any good. We will remind you that Haze remains a bit brown-looking, though.
Well, kind of free, eh?

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Burnout Paradise Gets A New Car and Bridge

The car is dubbed "Dust Storm" and criterion hint that "Where we're going, we don't need roads". The video also shows a slight glimpse of the new area of Paradise City. By the look of the video, the map has been extended East with a bridge, next to Angus and 4th parking garage, connecting the new area to the existing map.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

How PlayTV will change your PS3 for the better

First verdict on Sony's recordable PS3 DVR box

Sony’s new-fangled PlayTV is proof that their long-term strategy involves PS3 becoming a media hub for all your entertainment needs, both at home and on the go; encompassing games, movies, TV, music, internet and more. It is also, we are glad to report, incredible.

Yep, we’ve seen the future of TV and it’s a small, almost weightless black box that you plug into your PS3 via a USB2 cable. Plug the other end of the magic PlayTV box into a standard RF aerial cable carrying a decent broadcast signal and, well, that’s it. Now just sit back, make a nice cup of tea and you can use your Sixaxis or Sony’s BD remote control to browse the electronic program guide (EPG) and receive, record and program free digital TV through your PS3.

You can choose to record in standard or high definition and view the show you’re recording or other programs at the same time. PlayTV also gives you pretty much all the standard functionality of a Personal Video Recorder, so you can watch live TV, pause it while you go for a wee or fast forward it and rewind it.

Unfortunately, PlayTV doesn’t allow users to record more than one program at a time, unlike some of the costlier subscription services with which it will inevitably be compared, but Sony’s service has one major advantage over these: PlayTV is free. So unless you watch an inordinate amount of subscription-only sports and/or movies, PlayTV is a far cheaper option for managing and getting the best out of your TV-viewing than Mr. Murdoch’s or Mr. Branson’s pricey offerings.

What’s more, it (finally) turns your PSP into a truly indispensable piece of tech, your own on-the-go goggle box. So you can use it for something other than playing Patapon on the bus to work. Time to stock up on some spare PSP batteries.

Forget arguments about who’s watching what anymore. Girlfriend wants to watch the news while you want to watch The Simpsons? Simply take your PSP to the bedroom or to a quiet corner of your local pub and watch what you want, when you want. You can also choose to watch anything that you have recorded onto your PS3’s hard drive via live streaming. So, providing you’re in a Wi-Fi zone, you can view your chosen TV shows and movies pretty much anywhere you are in the world.

And all the TV-on-the-go voodoo doesn’t end there. You can also use your PSP as a portable electronic program guide, which means that you can check up on and alter your PlayTV recording options and preferences via your new magic portable TV-box. You need never miss Heroes or South Park ever again.

But, while the PSP streaming and EPG features are indeed the coolest aspects of the service, in reality how many people will actually make full use of them? If you want to watch your TV shows and movies while lazing around on a beach, then you plan ahead and do it on the portable DVD player you bought at the airport, surely? While the service sounds awesome in theory, PlayTV might turn out to be something that’s strictly for Sony fanboys and early adopters, yet lacking a more widespread, mass-market appeal. And while the top-shelf services are still a luxury for many, most of us already have either a DVR, decent VCRs or recordable DVD players.

Yet Sony certainly thinks it can crack the market and - if our guesstimate of around $150 (£70) for PlayTV is about right - we can’t wait to see what PS3 owners make of it when it launches later this Spring.


Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Phil Harrison left Sony for Atari supersidiary Infogrames

We saw quite a bit of corporate shuffling last year as execs moved to and fro; the swap of EA's Don Mattrick and Microsoft's Peter Moore is a perfect example. Phil Harrison's recent departure from Sony begged the question of his ultimate destination, and the answer has now arrived: Infogrames has announced that Phil Harrison is joining the board of directors at the company and has been appointed president.

Under the official title of "Directeur Général Délégué," Harrison comes to Infogrames and their subsidiary Atari at a time of dire straights as the Atari name fades and internal disorder persists. The company desperately needs the direction and guidance of an industry veteran, and hopes Harrison will fit the bill. CEO of Infogrames David Gardner welcomed his new coworker with the following words:

[Phil Harrison] has an outstanding reputation in the industry, as one of the key leaders behind the success of PlayStation. We have been seeking an opportunity to work together for some time and I am certain he will be able to make a significant contribution to the publishing strategy of the Group. Drawing upon Infogrames' strong financial foundation, Phil will have the means to attract new talent, develop studio and online capabilities, and drive forward our publishing activities. I want to work with people that understand fun for consumers and fun in the company culture. We're going to have a lot more of both around here with Phil!"

Harrison will be in charge of overseeing development among the many peripheral studios of Infogrames. Speculation suggests that a tidy sum of money pulled Harrison over to side of Infogrames, but we're holding out hope that somehow he has a master plan that will revive the Atari brand in a meaningful way.


SCEE to implement open audio file format

iXMF unveiled by Interactive Audio Special Interest Group

A preview draft of a new open interactive audio file format has been posted by the Interactive Audio Special Interest Group.

iXMF is the first open file format to be devised for interactive audio content. It combines MIDI and audio data with scripting logic that defines playback behaviours, encompassing a huge amount features of modern audio engine environments in a non-proprietary format. It is hoped that iXMF will enhance data exchange between authoring applications and let game audio engineers use the same tools as their TV and film brethren.

The file format has the backing of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. “We're supporting iXMF in our new audio tools so sound designers can take advantage of the incredible audio processing power of the PS3,” said SCEE’s Michael Kelly.

The preview draft of the Interactive XMF File Format Specification can be found here.


Monday, March 03, 2008

Cell on a diet again, Cell 3 Details Revealed.

Details of the Cell's 45nm shrink have now appeared. The new version of the chip has dropped in power consumption by 40%.

This will cut costs as it uses less silicon then the 65nm version and the lower power consumption means a simpler, lower cost cooling system.

Production is due to start in the summer so expect them on the shelves in time for Christmas. I also expect they cut the price again just before Christmas.

Details and pictures of the 45nm shrink are here: (translated) (original version).
Chip geeks can get the full shimmy at RealWorldTech.

On another note details of "Cell 3" have emerged.

"Cell 3" has been seen on IBM slides before as a Cell with 2 PPEs and 32 SPEs but nothing more has been said about it.

According to a presentation the SPEs will be getting some redesign to reduce latency and improve bandwidth. The PPEs on the other look like they light be based on POWER7 technology.

Sounds like it could be a pretty serious piece of kit. It's not known if this particular version will go into a future PS4 or if it'll get it's own "game" version.

If you're wondering what happened to Cell 2, this is the soon to appear HPC version, now named the "PowerXCell 8i".

Details of the PowerXCell 8i and the roadrunner Supercomputer it'll be sitting in are in this presentation [PDF], Cell 3 stuff is on the last slide.


MGS4 European date same as US

Konami has announced that Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots will be released in Europe on 12th June as well as in the US.

That also means that Metal Gear Online: Starter Pack will come out at the same time.

Word comes courtesy of a German announcement, which specifies the date and adds that there will be - and we're translating here - a "free accessible beta" for MGO.

Konami UK has confirmed the date, clarifying that "Full details of the public beta program will be announced shortly".

In the meantime, get excited with our MGS4 and Online first impressions.


Dreamworks drops HD DVD, but wont make Blu-ray for now

It seems Dreamworks has gotten the ok from Toshiba to drop HD DVD because they have cancelled all upcoming HD DVD titles including the anticipated "Bee Movie" that was set for release in North America on March 11th.

Dreamwork's parent company Paramount also announced that it would be ending HD DVD releases beginning on March 4th.

The studios differ however with their future plans. Paramount plans to release on Blu-ray right after they drop HD DVD while you wont be seeing any Dreamworks titles until at least the summer. There was no word on what each studio's first release will be.

Earlier this week Dreamworks' CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg made a statement saying that the studio was still committed to HD DVD thanks to contractual obligations. From his mouth, "We have a partnership with Toshiba and have an obligation to see this through," he said. "It really is in [Toshiba's] court at this point to really declare what the next step will be".


Sunday, March 02, 2008

PSW Knows Crysis Is Coming to PlayStation 3

The latest issue of UK magazine, PSW, features an article stating that "it's no secret Crysis is coming to PS3". They explain the upcoming PlayStation 3 version will have aspects of the sequel, and is not a direct port. Let's take a look at the article.

"First up, we have Crysis. Now it's no secret that Crysis is coming to PS3 this year. The excitable, hard-worked coders over at Crytek have said as much in many interviews - they've even produced a new, multi-platform engine in readiness - but the real juice here is that it won't be a straight conversion of the PC game. We understand PS3 Crysis will be an almost 50% new game, with many of the original games staff taken off PC Crysis months before release to begin to work on Crysis 2 and a port to PS3 that will include aspects of the sequel - but a new structure, environments, weapons and enemies will feature on PS3. This should be one of the year's biggest console shooters".

So, new enemies, environments, and more? Until we get an official confirmation, we are going to label this baby a rumor.


Sony to sell European HQ to M.Stanley consortium

Japanese consumer electronics maker Sony Corp (6758.T: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Thursday that it has agreed to sell its European headquarters and entertainment complex in Berlin to a consortium led by Morgan Stanley-run funds.

Sony said it will remain as the main tenant in the eight-building Sony Center on Potsdamer Platz, which draws more than eight million visitors per year.

Morgan Stanley (MS.N: Quote, Profile, Research) and Sony both declined to comment on the size and terms of the sale and leaseback, although a spokeswoman for Sony said the initial cost of the development was 750 million euros ($1.13 billion).

Reports put the size of the deal at between $940 million and $1.13 billion.