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MMR: PlayStation 3 Impressions, Network, Firmware Updates

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January 29, 2007 3:13:36 PM

Sony promised its new PlayStation Network and Resistance: Fall of Man's online multiplayer mode would support up to 40 players in a single game with no interruptions or lag. But how does it all hold up in the real world? Check out this week's PS3 review for the answer.
January 29, 2007 3:21:50 PM

Can't wait to read this thread. You've got chutzpah, Rob. :wink:

Let the flames begin!
January 29, 2007 3:42:31 PM

Okay, a few thoughts now that I read it.

First, what is up with those patches and EULAs? ("ELUA" typo on first page, BTW.) Nothing like that on Xbox. Patching takes very little time and EULAs are non-existent.

Quote:
We only experience one online multiplayer problem over the course of the week, which struck twice. I got stuck on the matchmaking page for more than 10 to 20 seconds, and after about a minute of waiting, an error message popped up that read "join game failed."


Doesn't sound like a problem to me. I experience that several times on Gears of War until they patched it up. Besides, only two times in a week is really good performance. I'd even go so far as to say it wasn't a software problem at all, but probably related to your connection or those of people you played with.

Quote:
The only problem was the slick, high-definition image of a gold McLaren F-1 wasn't from Gran Turismo. Instead, it was pulled from Gran Turismo's competitor, Project Gotham Racing 3 for the Xbox 360. Woops! Sony quickly took down the image and replaced it with one that was actually from Gran Turismo, but not before several people took screenshots of the page, which you can find here and here.


Heard this news from a couple of sites, and can't understand how that accidentally occurred. Very sad marketing department. (Also, you didn't actually have links "here and here.")
Related resources
January 29, 2007 6:55:59 PM

One thing that has been missing from every game review since Halo came out has been no one ever says anything about bots for multiplayer. Are there any in Resistance?

I mean sure playing a person is better if you want to *hopefully* have an enemy with actual intelagence, but I also like to sometimes sit down, play a little death match and not have to hear eleventeen-year-olds, who should be in school, yelling into a mic over xbox live or downloading some hack so they can win a round in counter strike.

I love to play ut2k4 simply because I DON'T have to deal with people. I can just throw some bots in and if I want a real challenge crank up the AI. Even console games like Red Faction I spent countless hours waling on bots, that was funner than the game.

Sometimes its best to just leave people out of it because if there is more than one person playing there is going to be some bitching and complaining then the game looses all fun and enjoyment.
January 29, 2007 7:35:38 PM

Good to hear at least some decent news about a Sony title, but I'm still leaning towards getting an xbox 360.
January 29, 2007 8:34:29 PM

Overall I have to agree with you on your write-up. I found Resistance pretty blan especially when I got to the end, I felt the "this is it?" feeling, and shut the console down being disappointed.

I am still having issues with my Logitech sound system and it is causing massive interference with the WiFi and Bluetooth controller, I hope you have a chance to review that a bit more if at all.

One other racing game that my perk your interest is MotorStorm, which is a free DL at SO. It has massive physics and great graphics. I know I can't wait to see what the rest of the levels look like. It won't be a blockbuster hit for Sony, but I have a feeling it will be among the top sellers.

I have also found Netflix a great deal with Blu-ray movies for anyone not wanting to poor money into ridiculously expensive BDR's.
January 29, 2007 9:44:12 PM

Hmm... could Sony's blunders have come to an end?

... Doubt it.

:lol: 
January 29, 2007 10:10:58 PM

I think that even minor blunders now will still be a vast improvement in performance for Sony.

BTW, anybody heard of any mods out for any of the next gen systems yet?
January 29, 2007 10:34:17 PM

Yup, check out www.xbox-scene.com to learn about the mods for the 360. Some nice tutorials. Also, someone recently modded a control pad for motion sensing by rigging a sensor to work as one of the sticks. Interesting stuff there.

I haven't heard anything else for the other systems, unless you count using a Wii-mote on a PC...
January 30, 2007 12:31:34 AM

Its nice to finally see a PS3 article from Rob that doesn't have a negative tone to it. Great job on pointing out the deficiencies (took me about 15 minutes to update to 1.50 at 4:00AM last night), and the positives (a decent online gaming experience).

I am hoping to rent R:FoM sometime this week so that I can finally play something other than NHL 2K7.
January 30, 2007 3:07:53 PM

As an owner of both the PS3 and XBOX360, I find myself playing Gears of War on the 360 more often. Resistance is childish in many ways. Not being a fan boi of either consoles, I prefer PCs, I feel as the PS3 has set itself up for ridicule and the XBOX360 has taken a bigger lead than Sony expected. A lot of high power technical jargon but undeliverable goods which ended up making the XBOX360 look better. No KAPOW factor with the PS3!

I've downloaded all of the downloadable PS3 demos including the Hong Kong ones (you can do this by creating a 2nd account and setting your country as HK). None of them tugs at my wallet. Gran Turismo is great and to me damage visuals don't matter to me much, though the damages are amusing on Burnout Revenge on the 360. RidgeRacer stinks and if Rob thinks the physics is lame on GT HD, check out RidgeRacer (downloadable at HK site). MotorStorm is pretty fun for about 15 minutes. Some of the other downloadable demos are just stupid.

The update download times - it's not a really big deal in my book. It's the nature of beast.

ROBBBB!!!! Can you please do me a favor though? If you really want to impress me and many frustrated HiDef fans left in the cold... the PS3 doesn't scale 1080i/720p hidef like the XBOX 360. I have a 720p/1080i capable lcd panel but it's only a 32 incher (approx. 27" crt 4:3). I have a 42" that does 1080i but not 720p in which case the PS3 will play Resistance only at 480p. My Xbox 360 handles both resolutions amazingly. The PS3 is a nitpicker and currently I have it plugged into my 32" lcd to play Resistance in HD. The PS3 is a horrid machine when it comes to handling 1080i conversion since it doesn't do it all. 90% of the games for the PS3 will only play 480p on my larger 42" which is disappointing. There are posts saying this is isolated but believe me it isn't. There are posts saying this is resolved... it's not. There's confusion... can you set it straight and make SONY really sweat?

PS. While not as obvious this time around, this article is still biased/slanted towards Msoft. Pretty evident here and increasingly on Tomshardware. Nice try though.
January 30, 2007 4:16:34 PM

Quote:
PS. While not as obvious this time around, this article is still biased/slanted towards Msoft. Pretty evident here and increasingly on Tomshardware. Nice try though.


How so, Sunny? Please explain first, and that will give me time to look at the second part of your post.
January 30, 2007 4:49:23 PM

I'll have to take a look at the mod site, thanks for the link.

@SunnyOverHere

1) I didn't know about the 1080i issue. I'll have to take a look at the specs of my 46" DLP and see if that matters to me. Either way though, I'm still leaning towards xbox. Do you think the issue is hardware limited or just software? If its software, I'm sure it will be fixed eventually.

2) As for Rob's bias, I don't think that is fair at all. I find what he states to be resonably objective. He gives his opinions and of course those are biased (they are opinions after all) but, overall, he is reporting on his experience with the console and as with any editorial you have to accept some level of bias.

And as for THG's bias towards the xbox360, it is more that the public in general is biased in favor of the xbox360 (and wii) as opposed to the PS3. I have been following numerous sites and news agencies and their coverage of the latest console wars and there are very few articles that seem to favor the PS3.
January 30, 2007 5:09:57 PM

Quote:
Can you set it straight and make SONY really sweat?

PS. While not as obvious this time around, this article is still biased/slanted towards Msoft. Pretty evident here and increasingly on Tomshardware. Nice try though.


These two statements are contradictory. If Rob was that biased, Sony wouldn't care what he said. Besides, if they don't listen to customers, what would the opinion of a small site like TwitchGuru do to them? They didn't even see the need to give 'em a PS3 for review.
January 30, 2007 5:16:04 PM

Quote:
2) As for Rob's bias, I don't think that is fair at all. I find what he states to be resonably objective. He gives his opinions and of course those are biased (they are opinions after all) but, overall, he is reporting on his experience with the console and as with any editorial you have to accept some level of bias.

And as for THG's bias towards the xbox360, it is more that the public in general is biased in favor of the xbox360 (and wii) as opposed to the PS3. I have been following numerous sites and news agencies and their coverage of the latest console wars and there are very few articles that seem to favor the PS3.


I think we're confusing bias with preference. Most reviews come with a person's opinion of said product. But that's not really bias, according to my recollection of my journalism ethics courses. Bias would be for me to ignore the fact that I truly enjoyed Resistance's impressive multiplayer experience and found the Sony PlayStation Network to be a gem and write a scathing review after scathing review of the PS3 because, hypothetically speaking, I had a personal grudge against Sony. Which I don't (even though I think they muffed the launch and have made some ridiculous gaffs and mistakes over the last 8-10 months). And if I'm biased against Sony because they didn't give us a review unit, well then, I guess I have to add Nintendo to the list, too, not to mention dozens of other companies that never respond to our product review requests.

So I think the public opinion may be in favor of Nintendo and the Wii over Sony and PS3, but I don't think the public is harboring a bias. Nor do I think most media outlets and reporters are harboring a secret agenda against Sony and have some newfound hatred of the company. That could be true in some cases, perhaps, but to suggest there's some kind of collusion out there among tech media to bash Sony is outrageous. I think what has happened is, the company made two amazing console (in fact, I would probably give the PS2 the title of best ever...in my opinion, of course) and set the bar remarkably high for itself, and for a number of reasons has failed to meet its own hype in many regards with number 3.

I hope I'm not being defensive again. I'm just trying to discern between bias and opinion here. Journalists hate hearing the word bias.
January 30, 2007 5:34:13 PM

No problem, terminology aside, I was attempting to state that you were just giving your opinion and not leaving anything out (i.e. you mentioned both pros and cons).

IMO, everyone that has an opinion of a product, will be biased towards their opinion, placing more emphasis on the facts they feel are important and less on the ones they feel don't matter. As long as all facts are mentioned, then this bias is an acceptable (and inevitable) part of any editorial such as this.

I guess like you said, journalists hate the word 'bias', but in reality, its nothing to be afraid of.
January 30, 2007 6:15:41 PM

Childhood: Don't worry, little Robby, the big scary bias won't hurt you.

Youth: Come on Rob, it's just one little bias. Everyone's doing it.

College: Class, the only thing that's certain in the world is death and bias.

Middle age: Did you know it's easier to get a bias than to get married after the age of 40?

Old age: At my age, bias causes me to forget what I had for breakfast while I'm eating it.

Death: Today, we mourn the passing of RobWright, who was taken from us by a terminal case of bias.
January 30, 2007 7:42:14 PM

My ninth-grade English teacher told me I was too creative and it was affecting my grade. She was probably right; it was my second time taking the class. :wink:
January 30, 2007 10:07:27 PM

One question: Does your smaller TV delivers 720p on the PS3? Or even better: Can the PS3 downscale its games to 720p with no problems? My LCD TV can handle both 1080i and 720p, I'm just wondering if I can play with my ps3 (coming in April, Cash and College don't like each other lol) on 720p with no probs. Also, do you use the HDMI cable or the component video one? Can 720p be done with component cables only?
January 30, 2007 10:54:05 PM

You should be fine. A lot of the games out currently only support 720p and I have had no problem on my TV (a CRT HDTV) using either component or HDMI at 720p. I haven't actually seen it display at 1080i yet.
January 31, 2007 1:23:53 PM

Quote:
You should be fine. A lot of the games out currently only support 720p and I have had no problem on my TV (a CRT HDTV) using either component or HDMI at 720p. I haven't actually seen it display at 1080i yet.


thx a lot.
January 31, 2007 6:02:13 PM

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Well, I'm an impatient man, and when the latest update was only 5% completed after about 10 minutes, I decided to cancel it.

I assume that was a joke - every gamer knows better than to do that... right?

I don't have a PS3 yet - just got a video switcher so I can hook one up next to the X360 and Wii - but it's good to know that they have at least one promising game. I'm willing to wait for them to iron out the kinks.
February 1, 2007 4:38:57 PM

Quote:
Well, I'm an impatient man, and when the latest update was only 5% completed after about 10 minutes, I decided to cancel it.

I assume that was a joke - every gamer knows better than to do that... right?

You mean every PC gamer knows better. The system SHOULD be (not saying it actually is) robust enough to handle a rollback if cancelled part way through and update since many console gamers are stupid.

Think of the average console user to be equivalent to the average Mac user: pretty much no knowlege and they only need a few inches of rope to hang themselves (so don't give them any).
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