There are Nintendo fanboys and there are PlayStation fanboys. (And girls, of course.) Each side in the video game universe has its pros and cons, but there’s one major advantage Team Ninty has been able to hold onto for quite some time: the Super Smash Bros. series. Since 1999, Nintendo gamers have been able to take control of their favorite characters and duke it out in the middle of classic scenes from various console games. Mario versus Star Fox, Jiggly Puff versus Kid Icarus; Super Smash Bros. made this possible. Now it’s Sony’s turn to let their gamers get in on all the combative fun.
The makers of PlayStation and a developer named SuperBot Entertainment have taken a page out of Nintendo’s playbook to create a Smash Bros. competitor. PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale will bring together popular characters from PS games including Kratos (God of War), Sweet Tooth (Twisted Metal), Sly Cooper, Mael Radec (Killzone 2), Fat Princess, and PaRappa the Rapper and pit them against each other on battlegrounds from well-known franchises like Little Big Planet (Dreamscape), God of War (Hades), Jak and Daxter (Sandover Village), Ratchet & Clank (Metropolis), and the trivia game Buzz!. Gameplay is simple; X button is jump, and the others serve as attack buttons. To ensure a win players must collect Action Points and fill up their Super Meter. Each character has three levels of special powers, and more destruction can be achieved based on the level you’re at and good timing.
As we approach E3 this summer, more details will surely leak surrounding this anticipated button-masher. For now, check out the announcement trailer after the break and prepare your new arguments for the Nintendo fanboys.
[Via EW; Joystiq] READ MORE PlayStation gamers to get their ‘Smash Bros.’ fix with ‘PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale’
The PlayStation branded 3D Display that was announced and detailed at Sony’s E3 press conference earlier this year now has an official release date. The PlayStation Blog reveals that the $499.99 set, which comes bundled with one pair of 3D Glasses, MotorStorm Apocalypse 3D-capable game, and an HDMI cable, will go on sale November 13. Early preorders offered a copy of Resistance 3 and Sony clarifies that if you put in an order on or before September 30, 2011 you will still be receiving that game. To refresh your memory, the 24-inch LCD display outputs 1080p HD picture and features 2D/3D support, high contrast (5000:1), a wide viewing angle (176 degree) and high response time (4ms GTG average) with a slim design, high quality sound with an integrated subwoofer, and two HDMI ports. And it’s got one really cool trick up its sleeve. Sony describes the SimulView feature like so: “This special two-player feature is unique to the 3D Display in that it significantly enhances two-player mode in select games. Ordinarily, two-player mode is played in split-screen format. With this unique two-player feature, each player gets their own full (2D) HD screen while wearing the 3D Glasses for the 3D Display.” The active 3D glasses contain the special sauce to perform the trick. Be aware that Sony will sell compatable 3D glasses separately at $69.99 a pop. If you want to learn more about the technologies powering the 3D Display head on over to the PS Blog where you’ll find an informative FAQ that should answer most, if not all, of the questions you might still have. Product images sit in the gallery below and an introductory video sits after the break.
[Via PlayStationBlog] READ MORE PlayStation 3D Display is out November 13 for $500
Today at Gamescom Sony announced new low price points for the PlayStation 3. The two standalone models currently in the marketplace are receiving $50 price cuts effectively immediately. The 160GB PS3 now costs $249 and the 320GB model costs $299. All of the current console + game bundles (Call of Duty: Black Ops, Killzone 3, inFamous 2 (new)) remain at the $299 price point. The Sports Champion Move bundle is the priciest at $349.
In related PS news, Sony has introduced a new PSP model into the European market. The PSP E-1000 features a sleek new matte design and ditches WiFi functionality. The new low price is €99.00 and will hit European PAL territories this fall. See images at the second source link. No word on whether or not it’ll make its way into the States. But no matter; Vita is coming.
[Via PlayStationBlog 1, 2]
The second big E3 press conference was hosted by the PlayStation makers. Again, here’s all the info in easy to digest bullet-point form.
- President of Sony Computer Entertainment of America Jack Tretton started by addressing the elephant in the room. He apologized to everyone for the recent PlayStation Network outage.
- Sony announced that the PS3 is the leading Netflix streamer amongst consumers, account for almost 30 percent of Netflix’s streams. Coming this fall to PS3 owners is Best Buy’s CinemaNow video service, providing consumers with access to more than 12,000 TV episodes and movies for rental or purchase.
- Upcoming PS3 exclusives include: Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception (a demo was played and a 3D trailer was shown, due out November 1, 2011); Resistance 3 (Sony will ship a Resistance 3 Sharpshooter bundle dubbed the “Doomsday Edition” and it’ll come with the game, the gun accessory, the PlayStation Eye, and Move controllers, $150, due out September 6); the God of War Origins Collection will bring the PSP games Chains of Olympus and Ghost of Sparta to the PS3 remastered in HD and 3D; the Ico and Shadow of the Colossus collection is also coming to the PS3 with support for 3D gaming.
- Speaking of 3D gaming, Sony plans to drive adoption for the new in-home format by selling a PlayStation-branded 3DTV. The 24-inch set features a mode where players can view individual, unique, full-screen images of gameplay when playing two-player games; the bundled set of 3D glasses do the trick. Other specs: LCD display, 1080p, 2D/3D support, high contrast (5000:1), wide viewing angle (176 degree) high response time (4ms GTG average), slim design, high quality sound, 2 HDMI ports. For $499.99 you get the 3DTV, Resistance 3, one pair of 3D glasses (PS-branded 3D glasses will sell separately for $69.99), and an HDMI cable. It’s a good idea, but question remains: is the lower barrier of entry low enough to get you to buy into 3D today?
- Upcoming games to utilize Move include: NBA 2K12 (Kobe Bryant popped by for the demo); Medieval Moves: Deadmund’s Quest (made by the devs who brought us the Move launch title Sports Champions); inFamous 2 (out now); deeper Move functionality is coming to LittleBigPlanet 2 this September; Starhawk; Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time (he’s back in 2012); Dust 514 (this PS3 exclusive releases spring 2012 and will extend to the NGP); BioShock Infinite (Irrational Games’ Ken Levine had to be convinced by Sony to incorporate Move support in this new title; though skeptical at first, Levine has found potential in it…he also announced that a new game set in the BioShock universe will release for the NGP some time in the future…and Infinite will come packed with the original BioShock); and Star Trek (will release next year alongside the J.J. Abrams sequel and will ship with a phaser-like accessory).
- New games from EA will provide PS3 exclusive content: SSX (Mt. Fuji map), Need for Speed: The Run (exclusive cars), and Battlefield 3 (Battlefield 1943 comes on the disc).
- Sony honcho Kaz Hirai also addressed the PSN outage and said, “We learned a lot during the recent outage of the PlayStation Network and one of the most important things we learned was the trust and loyalty of our customers.” On that higher note, he talked up the PlayStation Suite and PlayStation-certified Android devices.
- And then the announcement we’ve all been waiting for…the NGP is officially called PlayStation Vita. Where does the name come from? Sony explains: “Derived from the Latin word “Vita,” which means “Life,” this next generation portable entertainment system enables a revolutionary combination of rich gaming and social connectivity within a real world context.” It ships this holiday season and two models will be offered: WiFi only for $249.99 and WiFi+3G for $299.99. Sony has partnered with AT&T for the 3G data (the crowd moaned in laughter when this news was announced). The following games will be coming to PS Vita likely as launch titles: Uncharted: Golden Abyss, LittleBigPlanet, Ruin, Wipeout, and ModNation Racers. Capcom previewed Street Fight X Tekken; the game will feature InFamous‘ Cole MacGrath as a playable character. For a more in-depth look at the PS Vita, click here!
- Some DJ concluded the event with thumping beats.
Like Microsoft’s presser, I was left somewhat unsatisfied after watching Sony’s outing. They failed to excite me with a new franchise or by reinvigorating an old classic (though the return of Sly looks promising). PS Vita is an odd name for the PSP successor, but that won’t matter in the end if the content developed for it is good. And by the looks of it many developers are jumping on board to produce all kinds of fun, interactive experiences with the handheld’s OLED touch display, tilt functions, camera, and back touch pad. Here’s to hoping that Nintendo brings the goods tomorrow when they announce their new home console and new 3DS titles.
Is that minuscule Bluetooth headset Sony outed in November not good enough for you? Sony has invented a heavier duty headset for the audiophile living in all of us. The official PS3 Wireless Stereo Headset features 7.1 virtual surround sound that “lets you hear all the minor in-game audio clues clearly” and was “designed with comfort in mind for hours of gameplay.” The cans, which also feature a retractable mic, connect to the console via the included USB Wireless Adapter. Volume controls and microphone mute are easily accessible on the headset itself, and gamers will see “on-screen headset status updates” that provide battery status. The headset goes on sale this September for a cool $99.99.
The ability to save game progress and content in the cloud is here; it’s exclusively for PlayStation Plus subscribers, though. For those who dish out $50/month for the premium service, listen here. After downloading the latest PS3 software update (v3.60, it came out today), you’ll be able to store up to 150MB of PS3 game save data in the cloud. Here’s the kicker: users who save their files to the cloud can access their data on any PS3, using their PSN sign-in ID. Secured game data backed up to the cloud and accessible anywhere–sounds like an extremely compelling hook to sign up for PS Plus.
Look after the break for the official PR that explains the process of backing up game saves.
[Via PlayStationBlog] READ MORE PlayStation Plus subscribers can save games in the cloud
Sony is really doing a splendid job at racking up the movies selection for its PlayStation 3 users. After making deals to bring television and movie content from Netflix and Hulu Plus, come November 23 PS3 owners will have access to VUDU’s on-demand movie service which includes more than 4,000 HD movies for all major Hollywood studios, including new releases available the same day they are released to DVD. VUDU supports 1080p HD and Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 surround sound streaming, which is a big plus. VUDU plans to release a UI revision in mid-December, and it will bring a more streamlined user experience, intuitive structure, and support for next-generation motion-based input devices including the PlayStation Move controller. VUDU offers $2 for a two night rentals and new customers will receive a $5.99 credit; that’ll get you a ticket for one free HD streaming movie. Sony and VUDU official PR sits after the break. Catch a peek of VUDU on PS3 in the gallery below.
READ MORE VUDU on-demand movie service coming to PS3 November 23
What you’re looking at here is the newly redesigned Bluetooth headset for PlayStation 3 users. It’s glossy, sleek, and 30% more compact than its original counterpart which debuted in 2008. Hungry for specs? It offers a dual-microphone design, automatic pairing via USB cable, in-game headset status indicator, an easily accessible microphone mute button, a charging cradle which also functions as a desktop microphone, a special High Quality mode that promises “crystal clear voice chat” during gaming sessions, and built-in noise cancellation. It also packs three-way calling and call waiting support if you feel like pairing it with a mobile phone; its got six hours of talk time, so it’s definitely a viable cell phone companion. All this can be yours for the same price of the original model–$49.99. It will release sometime this month.
Hulu is ready to take its premium subscription service to the next level by opening it up to more people. As of today you no longer need an invitation to subscribe to Hulu Plus; if you’re interested, go ahead and register for the service right now. Is your living room packed with Sony products? If so this next bit of news should crack a smile. Hulu Plus is now available to access on 2010 BRAVIA HDTVs and BRAVIA Internet Video Link via the BRAVIA Internet Video platform. It will “soon” be available on Blu-ray players, Blu-ray Home Theater Systems, Network Media Player, and Sony’s DASH. PS3 owners, listen here: Hulu Plus will open for all of you sometime next week. (Update (11/10): It’s available today.) Since July only those PS3 users who subscribed to PlayStation Plus (a $50/year service) could use Hulu Plus, but now Hulu is removing that road block and allowing all PS3 users with a (free) PSN account to sign up for their service. PS3 will remain the exclusive video games console with Hulu Plus access through the remainder of the year; it’s expected to land on Xbox 360 and Wii sometime in 2011. PR messages from Sony and Hulu sit after the break.
[Via PlayStationBlog; HuluBlog; Engadget] READ MORE Hulu Plus preview opens up to everyone, now available on 2010 Sony BRAVIA TVs, coming next week to all PS3 users
Want a 320GB PlayStation 3 console but don’t care for the PlayStation Move motion accessory? Sony’s got you covered. Earlier this week the makers of PS3 introduced a new SKU into the market. For $349.99 you get the 320GB PS3 console (the largest storage capacity next-gen console) and a DualShock 3 controller. This new standalone PS3 model is available today. But before you decide to make a decision at the counter, take into consideration your other options. (1) For $50 less you can get the 160GB PS3; (2) for $50 more you can get the 320GB PS3 w/ Move bundle (which includes one Move controller and Sports Champion game). Don’t need the large capacity? Absolutely sure you don’t want to get off the couch and interact with games in a new way? Ultimately, the choice is yours.
The suits at Sony have something to smile about. Today the company reported having shipped 1 million PlayStation Move controllers in North and Latin America in the first 30 days of availability. SCEA CEO Jack Tretton is enthused to say the least. “Retail demand is incredibly strong and we’re working hard to keep the product in stock”, he said. “We believe consumers have already shown their preference for a precise, interactive game experience. We are on target to meet our end of year goals and expect sales to increase as our publishers and developers continue to update popular titles and introduce new games.” This is certainly great news for Sony, but Joystiq makes a solid point when they say this announcement does not help you figure the precise install base of the new motion controller. Many PS3 owners likely purchased more than one Move for two-hand and multiplayer functionality. Still, this does not take away the fact that Sony has something powerful in their (er, our) hands. Right now there’s 24 Move-supported titles out, with 17 more promised before the year runs out. I gotta get my Move on. Full PR after the break.
[Via Joystiq] READ MORE Sony ships 1 million Move controllers in first month of availability
Are you a Netflix subscriber? Do you own a PS3? Well boy I have great news for you! Starting this Monday, October 18 you will be able to access, manage, and play Netflix content from your PS3 without the (until now) necessary instant streaming disc. Oh-ho-ho but there’s more. Netflix on PS3 will allow for full HD 1080p playback and 5.1-channel surround sound. Netflix has partnered with Dolby to support Dolby Digital Plus audio for selected content. In addition to all this, the Netflix user experience on the gaming console has undegone a redesign. Menu selection and browsing looks quick and intuitive, plus there’s the new option to search! Nabbing the new version of Netflix on Monday is a snap; scroll over to the Video icon in the XMB and it’ll be sitting there waiting to be downloaded. Look after the break for a brief video demonstration of the service.
Starting Monday, Netflix on PS3 will be the best way to stream Netflix on your TV. No other Netflix-enabled box supports Netflix 1080p + Dolby 5.1 surround sound content…yet.
[Via PlayStationBlog; Engadget] READ MORE Stream Netflix in 1080p with 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound on PS3, now disc-free!