Gaming Hype

All about Gaming and it's hype!

Archive for the category “PS3”

PS3 catching up with Xbox 360 shipments worldwide

Sony reported 3.7 million PS3 unit sales worldwide for Q2 of fiscal year 2011 (which ended September 30), bringing its life-to-date total to 55.5 million units and improving on its year over year Q2 sales by around 200,000. Just last month, Microsoft touted 57.6 million shipped units of the Xbox 360 worldwide, bringing Sony within sight of the vaunted number two position behind Wii (Nintendo reported 89.36 million units shipped as of October).

While Sony’s document says “sales,” it’s difficult to tell whether that refers to sales to consumers (“sell-through”) or shipments to retail (“sell-in”). Both competitors’ numbers refer to shipments.



PlayStation Store available for the one PlayStation Certified tablet

Sony’s PlayStation Suite cross-platform initiative continues its gradual, piecemeal rollout, with the arrival of the PlayStation Store for PlayStation Certified devices — a category that, as of this moment, includes the Sony Tablet S and nothing else. Eventually, it’ll include the Sony Tablet P, other Android devices, and the PlayStation Vita (which will, of course, have access to the normal PlayStation Store as well).

And before you get your hopes up about seeing what kind of new cross-platform experiences PlayStation Suite can provide, it’s just PSOne Classics right now. Tablet S owners have a selection of ten PSOne games, for $5.99 each, including Cool Boarders, Hot Shots Golf 2, and, oh hey, Jumping Flash!
PSOne Classics available now for PlayStation Certified devices:

  • Cool Boarders
  • Destruction Derby
  • Hot Shots Golf 2
  • Jet Moto
  • Jet Moto 2
  • Jumping Flash!
  • MediEvil
  • Motor Toon Grand Prix
  • Rally Cross
  • Wild Arms


Sony’s 3D Display available on Nov. 13

Sony’s 3D Display, announced during E3, will be available on November 13 for $499. The company posted a lengthy FAQ on the PlayStation Blog, covering all the pertinent details regarding tech specs (yes, it’s active 3D, with two HDMI inputs and edge LED backlighting) and how the nifty SimulView feature will work.

SimulView, which essentially gives two couch companions their own 2D screens, will require a second pair of 3D glasses. The bundle only comes with one pair of glasses — separately, the high-tech spectacles will retail for $69.99. Games that will support SimulView at launch are MotorStorm Apocalypse, Gran Turismo 5, Killzone 3, and Super Stardust HD.


PS3 non-mandatory firmware update 3.73 adds ‘stability’

PS3 firmware 3.73 knows you’ve been too long bullied by all those firmware updates that require you to download them. But 3.73, he’s different. He’s casual. He’s not a mandatory patch, he’s completely optional. There’s no pressure here, he knows you’ve had enough of that from those other guys.

But when it’s time, 3.73 will be there. And when you’re ready to accept his love, he’ll be ready to improve the stability of “certain PS3 format software.” Yeah, he knows that sounds vague. But girl, maybe that’s exactly what you need.


Killzone 3 / Resistance 3 Move bundle, LBP2 ‘Special Edition’ on the way

A “Mayhem Edition” Move bundle containing Killzone 3 and Resistance 3, along with a separate “Special Edition” of LittleBigPlanet 2, have apparently been revealed through some box factory snapshots. forum user “Scream777” posted several pics of the unannounced bundles from the box manufacturer he works at.

The pictures include the aforementioned “Mayhem Edition,” a splayed box of the previously announced GoldenEye 007: Reloaded PS Move bundle, a 160GB PS3 bundle with Ratchet and Clank: All 4 One and unannounced LittleBigPlanet 2 “Special Edition”, and the Uncharted 3 320GB bundle.

One of the few things that immediately jump out as suspect is the typo of “steroscopic” on the Ratchet and LBP 2 bundle. The forum poster says Sony, which designed the packaging, didn’t notice the mistake until later and didn’t want to pay for a new run of boxes.


Compromised PSN info used in mass access attempt

In a post on the Official PlayStation Blog tonight, the Chief Information Security Officer for Sony Phillip Reitinger informed users that a major, concerted wave of sign-in attempts were made using login and password information “obtained from one or more compromised lists from other companies, sites or other sources.” Sony has, in their words, “taken steps to mitigate this activity.” Reitenger specified that credit card information had not been compromised.

Accounts affected by the mass access attempt have received prompts via email to reset their passwords. Sony Online Entertainment accounts affected have also been provisionally disabled until their passwords are changed.


Sony PS3 Wireless Stereo Headset review

Oh hey, Sony, how nice of you to join the party! The console gaming headset party, that is (no, Bluetooth earpieces don’t count). Over a year ago the company had us yearning for a PS3-oriented headset after letting loose its duo of Ultimate Weapons headgear for PC gamers. Then in May, a glimmer of hope shone upon us when its PS3 Wireless Stereo Headset was announced for the DualShock-wielding gamers — and priced at a modest $100.

There’s no doubt that this playing field’s been blanketed with a saturation of wallet-tempting selections (we’re looking at you MadCatz, Turtle Beach and Astro), but Sony’s official kit has a few tricks up its sleeve for a potential home run. Despite the moniker, it’s capable of virtual 7.1 surround sound and displays onscreen status reports exclusively when used with a PS3. We spent a few fragging-hours over PSN to hear how well we could pin-point our enemies with sound to keep the kill streaks coming. You’ll find out the answer by hitting that “read more” link below.


After the usual unboxing ceremony, we were left with the Wireless Stereo Headset itself and USB transmitter. Concessions were obviously to made hit that hundred dollar sweet spot, though — a case isn’t included, nor is a measly USB cable for charging, which you’ll be doing often given its seven-hour battery life. Thankfully, though, the build quality hasn’t suffered much as a result. The majority of the WSH is finished in a textured matte plastic, with hints of gloss on the inner edges and a thin slab of brushed metal on the headband. Our central nitpick is that the WSH did creak and squeak while getting it on and off our head. Overall, we wouldn’t be shocked if it was made from the leftover mold plastic of PS3 slims.

Of course, this is Sony and of course that means this headset sports an excessively forward-thinking aesthetic. It’s tough to convey its fun design as the headset is far from photogenic, but it’s quite dashing in person — almost like a fully realized concept design sneaking into retail. Still, its thick stature and exaggerated curvatures are going to be either love or hate for most on the looks front. Regardless, it’ll ideally be on heads engulfing ears with in-game sound.

Moving right along to that USB dongle, it’s similar in size to a pack of Wrigley’s gum and shares the same texture as the headset. Sandwiched between the stick’s plastic shells is a thin blue LED light, which simply blinks as it searches for the headset and glows solid while it’s connected. During use we found the wireless signal to be fairly consistent — we were able to walk around our two-story condo with minimal signal degradation, and only noticed occasional staticky hiccups while walking a few rooms over. As long as we were in the same room as our PS3 the signal was peachy.

Many gaming headsets we’ve used (wireless and wired) have required multiple cable connections and frustrating setups, but this little USB stick is a delightful departure from those hassles. We simply plugged it into our PS3, turned on the headset and that was it. Ready to play in mere seconds. Better yet, the WSH will automatically turn off if it doesn’t receive a signal from the USB stick for a few minutes, saving us from undue battery drain.

Controls and layout

Many headsets go for cluttered in-line controllers and annoyingly laid-out on-earcup buttons. While the WSH is a member of the latter camp, it still keeps functionality an utmost priority. On the left ear cup’s panel there are four discreet controls. The front has a vertical slider for balancing game and chat levels, while the rear handles the main volume — also, tucked in on the back end is a mini USB port for charging it’s internal Lithium-ion battery. The topmost part of the panel functions as a power / microphone mute button, and positioned horizontally above it’s a button for enabling virtual 7.1 surround sound. Using a thumb and a single finger allowed us to quickly make audio related adjusts, while a light inward push with our palm handled our muting, battery info, and power related needs. We did perceive a split-second delay before our settings took hold, though. Some of this information is also visually and audibly relayed whenever a setting is changed (we’ll detail this a bit). The embedded control layout in place here lends itself well for speedy adjustments.

While the button layout on the WSH is pleasing, the same can’t be said of its retractable microphone under the left earcup. Although it’s adjustable to three lengths, it isn’t flexible and it’s set to a fixed angle, which annoyingly left it in our peripheral vision — unless pushed back to its stowed position. This wouldn’t have been such a problem if a multi-color LED placed on its inner tip hadn’t been glaring in our left eye.


That annoying LED we mentioned earlier? It’s part of the headset’s audio / visual notification system we mentioned above. It glows purple when the mic’s muted and blue when it’s engaged, while a double tap on the power button indicates the battery level using up to three red blinks. It’s a fairly sound idea, but in practice the light was a nuisance and almost unnecessary considering the headset also uses onscreen prompts when connected to a powered-up PS3.

As soon as the headset is turned on, it quickly beeps twice and begins to search for the USB stick. Within a few seconds it confirms it’s set to go with a combination of another beep and an onscreen notification bubble. The bubble briefly pops up on the top right of the screen, exactly as a PSN notification would anytime most settings are changed (for those familiar with Sony’s Wireless Bluetooth Headsets, it’s nearly the same). Using icons akin to a mini dashboard, it displays the volume level, mic and surround sound modes, along with the battery level.

Oddly enough, checking the battery level (as described earlier) doesn’t pull up the notification bubble, and there’s no visual relay of the game and chat balance. Notably, the headset also beeps to confirm whether the mic mute is engaged, when it’s turning off and to notify of low batts along with a screen prompt. We found the various prompts useful, but the system as a whole felt rather disjointed.

Fit and comfort

So, how does this big honking gaming apparatus feel? Sure, the headset’s bulky, but we didn’t actually notice its heft while wearing it. Actually, its ultra-wide build helped the fit by keeping any pressure at a minimum. For adjustment, the headset’s side panels slide along the headband leaving enough room for smaller and larger noggins — and that’s about it. The ear cups only tilt vertically and leave no option to fold flat, but thankfully, the headband has a good amount of flexibility. Most importantly, the padding on the ear cups and headband was excellent for keeping things cushy for hours on end — Sony isn’t kidding when they say these can be used for long gaming sessions.

The headset’s fit wasn’t always like floating on a cloud, though. Its faux-leather on the earpads allowed for absolutely zero breathability, and our ears usually got toasty after a half hour — a cloth set of pads would be a welcome alternative. More frustrating for some, though, may be the driver placement which has the potential to cause cartilage cramping. They’re set moderately deep within the earcups at an angle, but without any padding. For our usage, we needed to occasionally slide the cups slightly forward to avoid sore ear tips. If you’re not fond of your ears grazing the inside of headphones, it’ll be worth it to double check the fit on these.


Let’s be real here, the main reason for procuring this type of kit is most certainly for increasing your killing streaks with better sound cues. For this price point, we’d say the Wireless Stereo Headset’s well positioned against headsets like Turtle Beach’s PX21, and Nox Audio’s Specialist while in stereo. The audio fidelity wasn’t amazing and there’s a slight, ever-present hiss, but it performed respectably as an improvement over our HDTV’s built-in speakers. With music, the highs tended to be exaggerated (tinny even), while mids were thin from a low level of bass.

Although the headset isn’t up to snuff for music listening, it’s not to say the WSH can’t perform its duties as a gaming headset. Its soundstage wasn’t very wide — not that we’d expect it at this price — but it proved spacious enough for gauging sounds across multiplayer maps in Call of Duty: Black Ops, and especially so in Battlefield 3 Beta matches. We’d be remiss not to point out — with shooters especially — that we never had qualms with the clarity of the mids and highs while gaming. The apparent lack of bass was less noticeable, too, as explosions managed to rock our ears without totally overwhelming its 40mm drivers.

If you’re eying that virtual 7.1 simulation, expected to be mildly disappointed. While the soundstage became all encompassing when it was enabled, it didn’t relay clear positioning to us. We found ourselves confused as to where important sounds were coming from, and we particularly had trouble picking up on gunshots and footsteps around us. Oddly enough, Sony states that with PS3 games a surround signal is in fact being down-mixed for a virtual surround sound simulation in stereo. If we weren’t aware of this, our ears would have us believe the headset was simply up-converting a stereo signal to fake virtual 7.1 surround. Notably, the virtualization can be engaged for other media aside from games, but surround sound isn’t officially supported with Blu-ray movies, et cetera. With what our ears heard, though, it’s not like it mattered much as the effect was similar. We never did get the sensation of bullets whizzing by us in games.

Thankfully, the WSH does have a few more positive aspects to it in regard to sound. With the volume jacked up, it remained free of any crackling, and the chat / game balancing was ideal for drowning out vivacious teenagers on PSN. The onboard microphone never let us down as well. Our PSN buddies reported that our voice was always “very clear,” and they heard minimal difference between having the boom extended or stowed. Sadly, there’s nothing in the way of talkback monitoring, so expect to shout when the volume is cranked.


Powering it all down, and reflecting back on our time using the PS3 Wireless Stereo Headset, it’s clear that Sony put a great deal of thought into this. The design and control layout is geared for long gaming sessions and the notification system is a welcome — if slightly fragmented — addition. Best of all, this stands as one of the least frustrating headset setups we’ve used in recent memory. That said, there are some odd quirks like its sweat-inducing ear pads and the microphone’s eye-nnoying LED. The audio quality works well enough for gaming, but overall it’s strikingly average, and the surround sound simulation is decent at best — for the price, we’ve experienced better surround sound from headsets like Tritton’s Dolby Headphone-enabled AX720. As an overall package for PS3 owners looking for a solid, hassle-free headset, though, Sony’s $100 WSH is hard not to at least consider. We’re just surprised it’s taken six years of PS3 until something like this landed on our heads. Better late than never, right? Right?


Sony’s big reveal is disappointing … yet AWESOME

So, Sony promised something special on October 5, and that “something” has been revealed. It’s a video. Not a major announcement, not a new game, just a video. Oh, and the PS3 is cheaper now, or something. How boring.

And yet, this is one of the most awesome f*cking videos I’ve seen in a while, so you know what? I think we should all forgive Sony.

Seriously, watch it. It’s pretty much the most fantastic letdown you’ll ever see.


Vita can be used as a PS3 controller via Remote Play

Sony Worldwide President Shuhei Yoshida says that they’re still working on it, but you’ll eventually be able to use the PlayStation Vita as a PS3 controller. He teases the functionality in a new interview in Famitsu.

A TGS last month a mock example was shown with Killzone 3 being played remotely on the Vita. Yoshida admits that this was a corded demonstration as they were worried that interference could flub up their showing.

Beyond pure Remote Play, the Vita can be used as a controller for the PlayStation 3. The system’s screen can also act as a sub monitor. Andriasang says that Sony is looking into creating utility libraries that will allow PS3 developers to use the Vita’s touch screen. How very Wii U of them!

Yoshida says that Sony is currently working on a library that will facilitate Remote Play functions, and that devs will receive a beta version soon. One of the first uses will be boring. A December update in Japan will bring remote control functions to PS3 digital video recording app Torne.


Sony implies all first party titles to use Online Pass

We hope you like using that on-screen keyboard on your PS3 – Sony confirmed in a statement today that Uncharted 3 will use the Online Pass system introduced earlier this year with Resistance 3. However, the same statement also specified that “Online Pass will be incorporated into… future Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios games with online functionality.”

Similar to EA’s Project Ten Dollar and other single-use code programs from other developers, Sony’s Online Pass ties multiplayer functionality to the use of, er, a single-use code. While Sony didn’t actually spell out Online Pass use “forever and ever,” they did include a portentious “We will provide further information in the future.”

We recommend a USB keyboard.


Post Navigation