By ravensword 4 Comments
Well, its is now 4 Years today that the PS3 was launched in North America. Its been a crazy ride so far. We now come to a close to the retrospec for the PS3s first 4 years. In past entries, we saw the PS3 on the verge of collapse to showing great signs of rising from its own ashes to become a highly competitive and worthwhile console. But what has this year entailed for the console? Well, lets get started. (and as preemtive damage control for potenital angry people complaining about my opinons ina certain part of this retrospec, please know that these are my opinons and I am entitled to them)
2010 has also been a great year for the console, but maybe not quite as great as 2009 was. But thats not saying thats negative or anything because, quite honestly, 2009 was such a big shift for PS3 it would be near impossible for 2010 to have more of a impact then 2009 did. In 2009, SONY rebranded their product, now in 2010 they got to expand on that and build on it. And for the most part they did I think. However, I think the Slim impact was short lived because right when we got into 2010 the console was hit with massive shortages because it sold so much in such a short amount of time. Many people dispute these shortages existed and say that it was SONY trying to cover up the fact they didnt outsell 360 again and that it was just damage control, but its hard to deny that they didnt have shortages for alot of the first half of this year. But, that didnt stop the console from still selling solidly.
Regardless of wether 360 outsold it or not most months this year, the numbers on PS3 were still good. It also didnt seem to impact theyre game releases, as they released some very solid hits this year with Heavy Rain, God of War 3 and more. SONY also introduced their play into the motion business with Playstation Move, which what is arguably a more accurate Wii Mote with potentialy better games and better graphics. But the tech is solid and its now down to software to prove wether its a dud or not. Good things also happened to PS3 that werent first party related. EA and Bioware have announced that the much lauded Mass Effect 2 will come to the PS3 in Jan. 2011, which marks another lost exclusive for this console generation, and more importantly Microsoft and 360, proving that Exclusives, unless done in house, are appearing to be a thing of the past. SONY also has thrown their hat into the Subscription business on consoles with PS Plus, a program that gives users monthly discounts, free games, themes, and potential services for the yearly fee of 50 dollars. Its up in the air wether or not the service is worth it (depends on who you are) but people who do have it (like myself) seem to like it and are certain they will get their moneys worth eventualy. This is a different take then what MS is doing, where they offer arguably the better online experience, but charge 60 dollars a year for it. However, PSN and Live differences do seem to be blurring for the most part now that they both have most of the same feature and services.
However, theyre are somethings that maybe didnt go so well for SONY, like MS introducing their own Slimline model of their console. Many could argue that the Slim strategy for MS has worked out better for MS then the PS3 slim did for SONY because 360 has outsold every other thing for like 4 months in a row now in NPD and it was recently announced that 360 has sold more consoles this year then PS3 and sales boom seems to have lasted longer then SONYs, but it was also recently revealed that the World Wide sales gap between 360 and PS3 is now down to a rather "meh" worthy 3 million units, so its obvious that theyre on about even footing.
PS3 is still not perfect however (what console is?), depending on how you look or feel about it. For one, the online still isnt quite where live is, even if its becoming murky between the two. Another thing, and its the reason I mainly play on 360 more because these are most of our games these days, the Multiplats still arent their yet for PS3. They are a marked improvement from 2007, but all too often we see the 360 version come out on top, and is maybe why people who own both go that route for multiplatform games. Many see no big differences, and that fine, but they are still there, whether or not it bothers you personaly or not. Another thing might be a personal thing I noticed, but you can still see that, in america atleast, that people still tend to lean towards 360 for stuff, including alot of multiconsole reviewers and journalists as well. Which is fine, preferences are no big deal, but it does seem like the PS2 did last gen, not in sales numbers of course, but in the mind set of people on their go to console.
Anyway, Regardless of this or what might happen at the end of this year regarding hardware sales or whatever, and really regardless of what happens at the end of this gen, it would be hard to find another console that has come from the supposed brink of disaster like the PS3 was when it launched to now being super competitive and compelling and on even footing as the other main competing console. Now its all down to Exclusives and what the consoles can give the consumer, not really prices and hate from the internet anymore. And looking torwards 2011, PS3 looks to have a very bright future with killer exclusives next year, and quite a bit of them, more so then what MS has planned so far next year in this regard.