Gaming Stuffs

may 27, 2003

Well, Sony announced that it would drop the price of the PS2 to $179 (they are planning on repackaging the PS2 with a Network Adapter soon) and guess whay? Microsoft was forced to drop the price of their XBox to $179 also to meet the PS2 price. Microsoft seems to be doing a lot of following in the video game business and not a whole lot of innovating. Oh, and the whole XBox Live thing, is it going to work? Now the starter kits are $70 (up from $50), the yearly fee is $50 (or you can pay monthly at a rate of $6 per month). EA has balked at Microsoft's closed system -- in essense Microsoft collects the money, Microsoft keeps the money and EA doesn't like that (who would?). EA has taken all online play away from the XBox and given it to the PS2 -- Sony has commited to an open system for online play, the game developers setup their own networks, collection schemes, and they keep the money they collect. Some, like Microsoft, would argue that the XBox Live way is the best because Microsoft puts up the money for the network infrastruction, the network development, and such. All a company has to do is use Microsoft's APIs to get their games networked. Whereas with the Sony open system way small developers may not have enough funds to develop, setup, and run a network infrastructure for games. But, on the other hand with large companies like EA, they do have the resources for it and they want to have the money. I side with Sony's decision on keeping the system open. What do you think of Microsoft's XBox and XBox Live services? Will they survive? Will developers continue to develop for the systems, especially when looking at the numbers: Sony has 50 million PS2 units deployed whereas Microsoft has 8 million XBox units deployed. Where would a company put their development resources?

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