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Jeff Minter on Sony's Arrogance 200

Regular Edge columnist Jeff Minter has lashed out at Sony over what he perceives as incredible arrogance on the console-maker's part. From the BBC article: "Mr Minter, writing in his regular column for Edge, said: 'They seem absolutely certain that even when they say it's going to be considerably more expensive than existing consoles... nevertheless us eager customers will rush out in droves to buy it because it's, hey, a new PlayStation.'"
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Jeff Minter on Sony's Arrogance

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  • Paying for Potential (Score:5, Interesting)

    by SanityInAnarchy ( 655584 ) <> on Friday July 07, 2006 @06:24PM (#15679897) Journal
    Last month Mr Stringer said: "The price of the PS3 is high but you're paying for potential."

    Sorry, I'd rather pay for reality, in the form of real hardware, real games, and real fun.

  • PS and PS2 absolutely dominated their generation (yes I'm aware Nintendo may have made more money). PS3 strikes me as too expensive but then I'm not the average gamer so it's not up to me to decide if Sony's strategy is sound. If their strategy is right, then who are we to tell them not to do it? And if it's wrong, it's not my problem either.
    • Sony barely got more than half when fighting the N64. I wouldn't call it "Absolutely Dominated." They won, but not by that much.
      • by jusdisgi ( 617863 ) on Saturday July 08, 2006 @01:20PM (#15683686)

        Sony barely got more than half when fighting the N64. I wouldn't call it "Absolutely Dominated." They won, but not by that much.

        Hey, I've got an idea: why don't you just make shit up? Or, here's a better idea: you could actually look it up.

        Here's what Wikipedia [] has to say on the subject:

        Sega Saturn: 9.26 Million (Japan: 5.74, Other: 3.52)
        Nintendo 64: 32.93 Million (Japan: 5.54, The Americas: 20.63, Other Regions: 6.75)
        PlayStation: 102.49 Million as of March 31, 2005 (Japan: 21.59, USA: 40.78, Europe: 40.12) including 28.15 Million "PS one" units (Japan: 4.19, USA: 12.7, Europe: 11.26)

        In other words, the Playstation more than tripled the N64's sales. When you sell three times as many units as your closest competitor, I don't think it's unreasonable to call it "Absolutely Dominating."

        • Please check the relevant timeframes for the total sales of the other consoles... a console that gets sold dirt cheap for years after the competition is dead (the cheapo ps units going in everything from kiddies lunchboxes to cars with mini lcd things ) of course it will sell more.

          i demand you adjust your figures immediatly providing the sales data for the ps2 that corresponds to the same timeframe as the other 2 consoles shared time period (since the saturn didnt last as long as the N64)
    • by thelost ( 808451 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @07:36PM (#15680320) Journal
      whether or not an individual or company (or Government!) has or does not have the right to be arrogant, this is usually the first step to a fall. I think people are beginning to become infuriated with Sony's attitude, I sure as hell would never consider getting a PS3, but that is beside the point.

      Good salesmanship and business starts with respecting your customers, Sony's attitude suggests they see their customers as sheep incapable of saying No! even though the product placed before them is overpriced, overhyped and underwhelming.

      Nintendo will be one of the winners of this next round of console wars, simply on the basis that they tend towards modesty and don't come off like such fucking jerks.
      • So, based on your logic, companies that are more modest do better than others. Brilliant. Or could it be that you read a site that has a majority of people that feel the same way you do about a certain (non-existant) console and thus feel it is winning because it gets the most posts modded up...hmm?
        • i'm not aware that i laid out a general principle by which you can base a companies success based on their modesty, or lack thereof. however I do remember saying that Nintendo don't over-hype their gear, and let the product do the talking.

          Eventually, when it comes down to it people have to gauge the publics reaction somehow. I read a lot of gaming sites, and talk to a lot of people about gaming as it's a favourite subject of mine and my friends. It seems to be the general opinion that Sony has overstepped t
  • I know a guy who's going to buy a PS3 just because the next Ace Combat game will require it.
  • I wont buy Sony (Score:2, Interesting)

    by p!ssa ( 660270 ) *
    I know personally I will never buy another Sony product, it seems as if this company has completely lost touch with reality. Its like they have a corporate mentality that they are a government and we live by thier rules vs. our dollars determine thier fate. At least the White House/neo con republican movement trys to put a positive spin on bad policy for the people, Sony is just clueless. Next they are just going to put out one sentence press releases:

    PS3, suck it down bitches!!
    Viao, suck it down bitches!!!
    • Re:I wont buy Sony (Score:5, Interesting)

      by faust2097 ( 137829 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @06:59PM (#15680107)
      The fact that this was tagged "insightful" is pretty pathetic. Of course so is applying an "attitude" to a multibillion dollar multinational corporation.

      Sony is big because they have a reputation for making quality products. Whether or not they deserve that is up for debate but when they do get something right they tend to nail it. Sony went from a distant 10th in LCD marketshare to #1 in 2 years with the Bravia line. The Playstation and the PS2 have totally dominated the console space for the last decade. If I ran a company that had sold 200 million systems and 2 billion games in the last decade I'd be pretty proud of myself too.

      The problem right now is that since the games aren't ready to look at the PS3 mindspace is basically a giant echo chamber so the loudest shouter gets the most attention completely independat of the quality of their message.
      • Sony is big because they have a reputation for making quality products

        Problem: Sony is not doing now what it was doing before it became big. Isn't the definition of insanity doing two completely different things and expecting the same result?
    • I work in a tech shop. When we get laptops back from repair at Sony, they always come with a little insert that reads something like this:

      Thank you for choosing Sony. Your Sony Vaio is designed for maximum durability. However, do not put pressure on the system, as this may cause LCD damage. Thank you.

      Translation: Your Vaio is very, very easy to break. Thank you for choosing Sony.
  • Sony's assumption (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Shadarr ( 11622 )

    They seem absolutely certain that even when they say it's going to be considerably more expensive than existing consoles... nevertheless us eager customers will rush out in droves to buy it because it's, hey, a new PlayStation.

    That is exactly what they're saying. The thing is, they may be right. I really don't see the 360 picking up a lot of ground in Japan, especially if Final Fantasy remains PS exclusive. It remains to be seen how much marketshare Nintendo can pick up in any region, since it's reall

  • by Aim Here ( 765712 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @07:03PM (#15680136)
    Mighty respect to the Yak, n'all, and Sony are certainly a bunch of pisstakers, but Jeff did write the light synth that was bundled with the Xbox360 so he might not be a completely fair and unbiased observer here.

    You might want to bear that small fact in mind...
  • That's What I See (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MBCook ( 132727 ) <> on Friday July 07, 2006 @07:08PM (#15680181) Homepage

    I see this generation as pure arrogance. I thought the $400 price of a 360 stupid. But asking either $500 or $600 for a console is just insane. They aren't even offering anything great. The videos I've seen of the PS3 games look like 360 games. The interface is basically the same as the analog controller introduced during the PS1 life-cycle. They have basically NOTHING to justify the cost in my eyes. Those have no large line-up of killer games. Heck, I've yet to see a game that really makes me take notice. Some (Assassin's Creed) seem interesting, but many of those (like it seems Assassin's Creed) won't be exclusive.

    I bought a PS2 on launch due to "good will" with Sony. I knew they would come through. They did... but it took a long time. My PS2 has probably seen more use as a DVD player than a PS2 (thanks, mostly, to Netflix and TV show DVDs).

    I bought a PSP on launch due to "good will" but I now regret that. There have been basically 3 games for it that I found that I like. Burnout (beat it, tired of it), Hot Shots (beat it, tired of it), and Lumines (I've spent so many hours on it, I'm tired of it). At this point in the console's life, I expected to have liked more than 3 games. And you know what's coming up that I'm looking forward to? Lumines 2, and that's just "more of the same" so I probably won't even get it. What a waste of my money. The DS was slow to start but after about 6 months it took off flying with great games.

    They lost all their gaming good will. They would have a half-decent chance at $300. At $400 getting me to buy one would be a real stretch. At $500 it is a wait and see approach. At their $600 price, it's a wait and see what hits the used market 2 years later to see if it would be near my price point.

    So far, only Nintendo has announced games that I consider "must haves". It's it so odd that that keeps happening every generation? The PS2 had some, the XBox had one or two (Jet Grind Radio Future and Shenmue II). The 360 and PS3 are currently lacking such titles. I have a list of about 6 for the Wii.

    • Re:That's What I See (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Akaihiryuu ( 786040 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @09:16PM (#15680773)
      I was in EB Games at the mall today, and they had a PS3 E3 propoganda video (it was obviously produced by Sony) was all I could do to keep from falling over laughing. Here is a direct quote: "They took the rumble feature out of the controller, that makes it lighter and more ergonomic. And it now has 6 degrees of freedom with NO EXTERNAL SENSORS REQUIRED! This is the most innovative controller I've ever seen! The 60-gig model is only $599, and the 20-gig model is only $499!!!" (it was obviously either a Sony PR drone or a media drone that Sony paid). Um...taking the rumble out makes it lighter and more ergonomic, so that's a good thing? They didn't even mention Nintendo, who blew everyone away at E3 and stole the show...Sony was virtually ignored, so it's likely that "E3 video" was really just Sony propoganda in disguise. That was the most arrogant piece of BS I've ever seen...even Microsoft hasn't put out propoganda that bad, and that's saying something.
    • The parent comment demonstrates Sony's real problem:
      If even such dedicated gamers like the author of the post are not willing to pay for the new PS then they are in real trouble.
      To us much more casual gamers the high price and low expected features will be even more of a deterrent!
      To be honest I don't mind Sony getting negative press since we should all still remember their CD-rootkits. (which is yet another reason to not buy anything they make!)
      • Frankly, I have quite a bit of good will towards Sony. My family buys most all of our consumer electronics from Sony because we've had a very good history with them. Most all of our TVs, my home theater receiver and speakers, our DVD players, our VCRs, etc.

        I bought a PS based on the Sony name to a large degree. They had some good looking games, but it was still a bit of a risk. I didn't have any qualms. I didn't have any qualms about the PS2. I had a few qualms about the PSP (not enough, as it turned out).

  • The combination of late to market, higher price, and harder to develop for is a killer combo.

  • by nathanh ( 1214 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @07:12PM (#15680198) Homepage
    "Mr Minter, writing in his regular column for Edge, said: 'They seem absolutely certain that even when they say it's going to be considerably more expensive than existing consoles... nevertheless us eager customers will rush out in droves to buy it because it's, hey, a new PlayStation.'"

    Well, no, I'll be buying it to play the games.

    What amazes me is that an expensive console is nothing new. The Playstation was almost twice the cost of the next dearest console. The Playstation 2 was also the most expensive console from that generation. I bought both of them. Approximatedly 100 million people bought the damn things. Obviously cost isn't that important an issue.

    So what is the important issue? The games, of course. There are games on the PS3 that won't exist on other consoles. I'll be buying the console to play the games. I don't buy it because it's "new". In fact, I'm most likely to wait for the first price drop because there will be too few compelling launch titles.

    And what's this about price?

    when they say it's going to be considerably more expensive than existing consoles

    I don't care! That's not an issue. It might have been an issue back when I was a teenager and had to beg my parents for money, but I have a job now and I can afford to buy things. The cost of a PS3 pales in comparison to the cost of running my car. My "video game habit" is still an order of magnitude cheaper than the booze and cigarette habit that infects 99% of the population.

    These "analysts" need to realise that the video game demographic has grown up. The age group is no longer 5-15 years old, begging our parents to buy a Sega Master System for Christmas. The dominant demographic is 25-35 years old with gobs of cash. The price sticker on a PS3 doesn't bother us in the slightest.

  • > Mr Minter, writing in his regular column for Edge,

    That's it for Edge, then!
  • Sony has way more up it's sleeve than any article I've seen recently about the impending demise of Sony has taken into consideration.

    PS3 + PSP means so much more.... multiplayer gaming with the TV giving a birds eye view, and each players first person perspective on thier PSP. or using your PSP as a universal remote control. Being able to get your media collection streamed to your PSP (I do this now with TVersity(or try PSPITunes), but it's a pain to browse, subscribe to rss, close browser, open rss, list
    • by goMac2500 ( 741295 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @07:47PM (#15680368)
      Either you're a Sony marketing bot, or this entire post is satire. Multiplayer gaming with a birds eye view from the PSP? Right. Like that's never been done before (Nintendo). Using your PSP as a remote control? How? Why? Who cares? What's wrong with a normal remote control? My media collection streamed to my PSP? Why would I want to stream it to a tiny stream when I'm going to be streaming it in my house with a big TV? PS3 DVR? How is that supposed to work? I haven't seen Cable card or a coax connector on the PS3. Normally a DVR does kinda need one of those. PS3 as a portable WiFi hotspot? Gee that's great, I'll haul around a $600 router with me. VOIP? Because the N-Gage didn't really well. Video calls? Yeah, that's a huge market there. A GPS? Right, because I'm going to take my PSP hiking with me with it's 10 hour battery life. Do I need to buy a solar panel too? 7000 PS1 games? First, I'll eat my sock if that many really are available. Secondly... why do I care? I can play PS1 games on a freakin 5 year old Macintosh. Use the PS3 to store my PSP downloads? So the PS3 has a hard drive. OOooooo. Impressive. PDA apps on the PSP? With what input? So far the only console succeeding at all as a PDA is the DS. Same for education.

      Sony has very little potential. They're wrapping up all these buzzwords trying to impress us, when in actuality, half the stuff they promise doesn't exist yet, and the other half they'll promise and never deliver. The entire Sony gaming division must be stocked with the same people in charge of Vista. Cramming yesterday's technology into something high priced, and filling it with buzzwords most consumers don't care about. I don't care whether or not I'm paying $600 for 600 buzzwords. It's not new, it's not original, and for the most part, those features don't actually exist. Seriously... a DVR? You're talking about things that require connectors that aren't even on the PS3.
      • Actually I have been thinking for some time about hacking the PSP to use as a dedicated remote (no game use).

        The PSP has straight-up wireless so it would be easier to tie into a home network (correct me if I am wrong but the DS wireless is not quite standard, not to mention the hacking scene there does not seem as big).

        One thing a PSP would give you is "Picture out of Picture" - you could stream one video feed while another was playing on the primary screen, perhaps warn you when it detected commercials wer
    • Unless it can cook me a steak and murder an intruder, then I don't think it deserves a $500 price tag.
    • The PS2 had Firewire ports. Think of the potential for fast external storage, connectivity to video cameras... and they never delivered on any of it.

      The PS2 had USB. Think of the potential for hooking up a mouse and keyboard, or even a trackball and a graphics tablet, and playing strategy and adventure games that needed something other than a joystick for input. I had a keyboard plugged into my PS2, but the only thing I ever saw use it was Action Replay for entering game cheat codes.

      The PS2 had a slot for a
      • Look at Yaroze on PSOne and Linux on PS2. Amazing potential for opening up the market to independent game makers and hobbyists. And again, a total failure to deliver, leaving us with a games market where nobody will fund anything unless it's a $10m+ FPS.

        But this had nothing whatsoever to do with Sony. Video games are hugely expensive to make, primarily because of content. Just making cheap development kits isn't any kind of magic bullet for that. If it were, then there would be free games for Linux of th
  • I know, Sony has previously claimed that the ps2 would be a computer, but didn't bother. However, they had to pay the taxes anyway. I think they have more incentive as such to make it a general purpose computer. And if they don't, start a class action law suit to open the hardware, as it was bought on the condition that it would be a general purpose computer.
  • Part of me thinks "maybe they know how deep a hole they've dug themselves, but at this point the only thing to do is keep digging and hope you come out the other side"

  • by Kaenneth ( 82978 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @08:35PM (#15680597) Homepage Journal
    How many Units do you think an average store will stock?
    Every Wal*Mart, every Target, every Sears, every Fred Meyer, every EB-Games...

    If I were in charge of electronics inventory for a major chain, I'd have to think long and hard... If they don't sell, will Sony reimburse? Should each store stock 10 Wii's 10 360's and 10 PS3's?, or 30 Wii's, 10 360's and 5 PS 3's?

    Which would make the store more profit? 30 Wii's plus 1-3 games each, or 10 PS3's with 0-2 game each? (If it comes with Linux, many will not be used for retail games)

    How many pre-orders will end up not being redeemed, because the customer can't afford it?

    Spending $600 for a game console is one thing, but if you're the guy who bought $60,000,000 worth for your company, and only 50% of them sell, who's gonna get blamed for the lost $30,000,000?

    But then, if you stock too few, and the competition gets all the sales profit...
  • Don't forget everyone, when you see an anti-Sony article use that "zonked" tag! It will be an impressive site come November when you search and see how anti-Sony Slashdot has become.
  • Smug? (Score:3, Funny)

    by Megane ( 129182 ) on Friday July 07, 2006 @10:43PM (#15681083) Homepage

    UK video gaming stalwart Jeff Minter has criticised Sony for being "smug" about its PlayStation 3 console. Smug? Right now, Sony have more smug than a batallion of Priuses, driven by OS X users, all playing iPods and using Netwons!

    Go, Yak, go!

  • That's going to be the make ort break, if the PS3 cxan justify it's price with some Ubergamerware that people will feel empty without the PS3 controller in ther hands I don't think they will do that well.

    The Wii has already demonstrated titles and thier controllers that has sparked the imagination of many a gamer. Not because they are the bigest fastest games on earth, but they seem like they'll be hella fun and refreshingly different. (some of those controller demo games look like they'd really appeal t

  • I got through that whole thing without anyone pointing out how arrogant Sony was at thinking it could get away with rootkitting millions of PCs.

    Y'all are slipping ...

It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead