Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Sony Home (a.k.a. Second Life – Sony Style)

There has been a lot of criticism levelled at Sony of late. I’ve also be quite outspoken about my disgust of how they have treated Backwards compatibility (and also Europe as a whole). For once, however, Sony has done something right.

Prior to the Keynote speech at the GDC there were rumours that Sony Home would be a combination of Mii like avatars and Xbox live achievements… Well it is, but it’s much, much more. As soon as I saw the screenshots, and saw the video, it’s obvious that Sony have decided to adopt a Second Life type system… Really, if I didn’t know any better, I’d think that the screenshots were from Second Life.

This is no bad thing. I actually think that Second Life is a good idea, however, it runs like a dying dog on my wife’s PC and the user interface isn’t exactly friendly. Sony Home appears to be a simplified and more user friendly version. Allow just as much freedom to the user to create and adapt their own environments, but without all the troublesome problems associated with PC games. You get your own home to decorate. Trophies to display as you complete games. You can meet people in common area’s and jump straight into multiplayer matches after chatting to them. The scope really is quite vast.

Sony could really be onto a great thing here, I can see this grabbing the attention of quite a large number of people. It could also just grow and grow into a fantastic online community.

Well done Sony… You may have just regained some of the respect that has been slowly slipping from your grasp over the last year.

The other thing that I have to mention is LittleBigPlanet.

This is brought to you by the people who created Ragdoll Kung-Fu (the physics in the game are a good indication of this) and looks like enormous fun. At it’s basics it’s a pseudo 2D platform game, played by 4 people who need to co-operate with each other, however, the levels themselves are user designed.

It’s hard to give justice to it by explanation alone… Just look at this trailer and tell me that you’re not impressed…

LittleBigPlanet trailer.

1 comment:

steve said...

Cool - that's actually a nice idea. Sony getting one up on Microsoft online? I'm poised for the MS rebuttal about how it's not at all significant of course.

It's cool to see LittleBigPlanet - I went to a talk by one of the Media Molecule guys at Siggraph and he was demonstrating some lighting techniques - and it was all in that semi-2D plane with characters jumping about - but all the geometry was really generic, there were no textures etc. They obviously didn't want to give anything away at that stage.