Last week, PALGN got the opportunity to sit on a plane for 21 hours and repeatedly cry in the incredibly cramped and uncomfortable trip to jolly old London. Of course, there was a reason for this madness: on Tuesday the 6th of May, Sony held the very successful PlayStation Day, and we were there in person to experience glimpses of the future in what is surely going to be a mammoth year for Sony and the PlayStation 3.
As the O2 Arena filled up with journalists and Sony representatives from across the globe, we got ourselves a prime seat for the press conference, which featured special guest Kaz Hirai, the president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, who came out for a brief moment to welcome us to the event. He talked a little bit about the future and personally apologise for the consistently-delayed Home; which he assured us will be worth the wait. After admitting to a slow start for the PlayStation 3, he assured us that this would change, and that Sony are confident in the future of what they think will be at least a 10 year lifespan for the console.
We have already announced some of the revelations of the event; Killzone 2 unfortunately got delayed until February next year, Motorstorm 2 got a brand spanking new name in the form of Motorstorm: Pacific Rift, and most interesting, PlayStation 3 has now outsold the Xbox 360 in Europe, despite being out for a much shorter period of time. The success of SingStar was reiterated, with the PS3 version already selling 220,000 copies since it was released only a few months ago, with a massive one million songs purchased.
The emphasis of the conference seemed to be that the future of PlayStation 3 and Sony is all about social gaming and the community, with already released gems such as SingStar and the upcoming PS3 version of Buzz leading the pack along with online-enabled products including LittleBigPlanet and of course Home. If you're more the kind of gamer who likes their guns big and their corpses flying, Killzone 2 and Resistance 2 are leading the forefront in the shooting market, and Metal Gear Solid 4 is just around the corner and will become available in a bundle with the console itself (although this was only confirmed for Europe, we can safely assume that a similar Aussie bundle will be available).
After the conference was all said and done, the three floors of gaming were opened and we were set loose into the event, competing with a huge amount of journalists to get our hands-on time with as many titles as we could, as well as chatting one-on-one with the developers about their upcoming titles. This was made increasingly difficult by the gauntlet of girls handing us an endless amount of finger-food and the temptation of the open bar, but we did our absolute best to move past the distractions and get right down to the business end of things...
So, the big question: What did we get to play? Well, we got to experience as much as humanly possible, including Killzone 2, LittleBigPlanet, Motorstorm: Pacific Rift, Resistance 2, Home, Lego Batman: The Video Game, Buzz: Quiz TV and more - we even got our hands-on with EyeToy: Heroes and EyeToy: Pom Pom Party, just because we care about you, our readers. The evening ended with DJ Paul Oakenfold keeping us dancing until an unhealthy hour in the morning. One thing is for certain: Sony sure know how to throw a party.
The next day, we got the opportunity to go to the SCE London Studio and got a tour of the place, which while giving us an insight into the inner-workings of many titles being worked on there, also gave us the opportunity to talk to the very friendly Paulina Bozek who is, quite simply, the face of SingStar, as well as the chance to chat with a couple of the boys behind Home for an update on how the service is looking at this point. Needless to say, it was an absolutely jam-packed couple of days, and after sadly stepping off of the plane back here in Australia, we've got a lot to catch you all up on.
For our detailed impressions of all the games we played, check back over the next week or so to read our hands-on previews and developer interviews. Many thanks to Sony for the trip, for throwing an awesome event and for giving us an inside look at the SCE London Studio. A huge thanks must also go to Rebecca and Kendall from Sony for making the whole experience so enjoyable, it was very much appreciated.