Polyphony Digital usually plays its cards pretty close to the vest when it comes to releasing details about its Gran Turismo series. So, I was pretty stoked when I got a news release titled "First Official Gran Turismo 5 screenshots." I waited with baited breath as the images downloaded. Hurriedly, I flung open the attachments only to be greeted with a handful of images of the GT5's fancy menu system. Really? Talk about disappointing.
What's better than a brand-spankin'-new Sony PlayStation 3 Slim for $299.99? A brand-spankin'-new Sony PlayStation 3 Slim for $199.99, of course.
I suspect I'll get an earful for this, but the deal comes courtesy of our old friend, the Sony Visa card. When you make a purchase of $299 or more, you get a $100 credit in 8 to 12 weeks. Final price: $199.99.
Some stray ads have spawned speculation over the past week that Microsoft might soon be releasing a new Xbox 360 Elite with a 250GB hard drive and two wireless controllers.
The ads suggest that the new console is called the Xbox Super 360 Elite. The current Xbox 360 Elite comes with a 120GB hard drive and one wireless controller.
The rumors started last week when Amazon.com's German store listed an Xbox 360 Elite with a 250GB hard drive, two wireless controllers, and Forza Motorsport 3 bundled in the package. It was priced at about $400. The listing was subsequently removed from Amazon's pages.
The very next day, a South African retailer called BT Games promoted the Xbox Super 360 Elite in an ad. It also featured a 250GB hard drive, two wireless controllers, and a $400 price tag.
Although it's certainly possible for one listing to accidentally slip out for a product that might not be real, it's extremely coincidental that two listings, from two companies, about the same Xbox 360 model were discovered over two days.
I contacted Microsoft to see if it plans to release the Xbox Super 360 Elite. Rather than saying that it didn't want to comment on rumors or speculation--a common Microsoft response--a company representative said: "Microsoft has made no such announcement."
Microsoft contends that its Xbox 360 Elite is on par with the PlayStation 3 and the new PS3 Slim, even though Xbox lacks several PS3 features, including Blu-ray, built-in Wi-Fi, and free online gaming. When pressed for why it believes that the Xbox 360 Elite's value proposition is high enough, the company said that it's all about games to the gamer.
"Xbox 360 offers double the games library of PlayStation 3, and with Xbox Live, nearly 20 times the number of digital movies and TV shows," a Microsoft representative said in an e-mail. "On top of that, we're bringing even more to the table with instant-on 1080p HD streaming, Facebook and Twitter, and the future of games and entertainment with Project Natal."
Microsoft also asserts that its Xbox 360 Arcade--at $199--captures a portion of the market that its competitors cannot.
"When you're looking to find the best value in games and entertainment, price is really just one piece of the puzzle," the rep said. "However, consumers with $200 to spend this holiday season will still only find one console within their price range: our Arcade console."… Read more
MTV.com announced a new homepage design Tuesday that focuses more on content, rather than aesthetic changes. It will launch Wednesday morning.
MTV.com's basic color scheme will remain the same. The navigation at the top of the site will also remain unchanged. Even the prominent promotional box toward the top of the page, which MTV calls "The Marquee," will maintain its position on the new home page.
The biggest change made to MTV.com comes in the form of a new module, called The Daily Fresh. Placed just below The Marquee, The Daily Fresh will feature … Read more
The PS3 Slim may not have backwards compatibility, but owners of the newest Sony console can get a taste of what it feels like when the God of War Collection releases this holiday season.
The collection will include both originalGod of War and God of War II games on one Blu-ray disc. Also, each title has been completely revamped with antialiasing graphics (less jagged edges), 60-frames-per-second performance, and a 1280x720 resolution (720p). The disc will also enable trophy support for both games.2
While Batman: Arkham Asylum may have saved the summer's brutal video game drought, it looks like September will really bring the goods. With this resurgence of quality gaming titles also comes our monthly slideshow tradition.
The Wii gets some exclusive love this month with two notable releases that include Dead Space Extraction and Muramasa: The Demon Blade. It seems portable gaming also gets a much-needed boost with the release of Bowser's Inside Story, Scribblenauts, and MotorStorm: Arctic Edge. … Read more
With both Sony and Microsoft dropping the price of the PS3 and the Xbox 360 Elite, the Wii is beginning to look like an overpriced console. There a few reasons why Nintendo needs to drop at least $50 off the company's best-selling home console and fast.
The shortage is over Anyone who wants a Wii has one by now. Consumers in the market for a console will no longer look to the Wii for its affordability over the competition. In fact, an Xbox 360 Arcade can be had for less than the price of a Wii already.
The competition … Read more
On the heels of Sony reducing the price of its PlayStation 3 and announcing the PlayStation 3 Slim, Microsoft announced Thursday that it too will be dropping the price of its console.
Starting Friday, the Xbox 360 Elite will be priced at $299, $100 cheaper than its current price. The Xbox 360 Pro, which currently retails for $299 will be priced at $249 starting Friday. Once retailers sell through their entire stock of Xbox 360 Pro units, that SKU will no longer be offered by the hardware maker.
Going forward, Microsoft will offer only the $299 Xbox 360 Elite with its 120GB hard drive, and the $199 Xbox 360 Arcade which comes bundled with five games and a 256MB memory unit.
Microsoft's decision to reduce the price of the Xbox 360 isn't a surprise. Numerous rumors have been swirling around the Web for weeks. But perhaps the reason for the price drop, at least according to Microsoft, might surprise you.
When I pushed Microsoft's director of product management for Xbox 360 and Xbox Live, Aaron Greenberg, on why the company had decided to reduce the Xbox 360's price now, he said that it had been planned for months.
"I'm sure some will think this is a response to competitor pricing," Greenberg said. "But we had planned this reduction months in advance. Retail circular ads and store merchandising were all lined up. We wanted to be ready for the holiday season."
Microsoft wouldn't say whether it is generating a profit off the sale of each Xbox 360 unit it sells. Greenberg would only say that, overall, Microsoft's Xbox division is profitable. That stands in stark contrast to Sony's PlayStation 3, which is currently being sold at a loss.… Read more
With Sony's PlayStation 3 trailing so far behind Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii, it was only a matter of time before the company that had offered the most expensive console on the market would reduce the price of its hardware.
But by doing so, Sony has ensured that going forward, it will take a loss on every console it sells. That was confirmed by Sony Computer Entertainment chief Kaz Hirai in a recent interview with the Times Online.
"If you're just talking about the hardware alone, the quick answer is yes," Hirai said in response to a question asking if Sony is losing money on each console sold. "That makes good headlines, but I don't actually know that that's the true nature of the business that we're all in, whether it's PlayStation, Xbox, or the Wii."
There's little debate that Sony's decision to cut the price of the PlayStation 3 to $299 and offer the PS3 Slim at the same price is surprising. The price cut will undoubtedly hurt profit margins. But it was a smart move.… Read more
If you've been waiting patiently for Sony to drop the price of the PS3, wait no longer: the Sony Style store has the refurbished 40GB PlayStation 3 for $236.77. Shipping is free, though you'll probably have to pay sales tax.
Obviously Sony is clearing out old stock to make room for the new PlayStation 3 Slim, and at this price it's a safe bet these refurbs won't last long.