News and Notes from 6-24-10

Just a few tidbits of particular interest while I was scouring the web the last day or two:

Hulu is close to reaching an agreement with Sony for the Playstation 3. They’ve already recently come to an agreement with Microsoft on the Xbox 360. Between this and Netflix, does anyone even need cable tv anymore?

The God of War Collection was both a critical and sales success by most accounts, taking a beloved Playstation 2 game (well, two of them actually) and giving them the high-definition treatment and putting them on the Playstation 3. Given the overall results, it should hardly come as a surprise as Shuhei Yoshida, the President of SCE WWS, announced that they are looking to continue making these kinds of HD collections for the PS3. Considering that the God of War collection was sold at the very reasonable price of $30 for two games and a pretty facelift, the potential here is incredible.

I played and enjoyed White Knight Chronicles. I didn’t make full use of the online aspects, but I enjoyed making a village and at least having the option to play with others online when I wanted to. I also bought my copy used at Gamestop about two months after its release and saved $10. Sony has just announced that the White Knight Chronicles: Awakening of Light and Darkness sequel will be using Online Licenses for access, much like the recently talked about EA Sports Pass and some of the other online initiatives (I bought Mass Effect used as well and lost out on the Cerberus Network options – unless I wanted to spend $15 extra and essentially pay $5 more than buying it new). This looks even more strict according to the article I read – only allowing one account on the PS3 to go online with the White Knight sequel – something that I suspect would not go over well with my son. I’m a frequent shopper of used games, and this new initiative perhaps rankles me a bit more because of it, but I don’t like buying a game used only to find out it may not include all of the content I thought I was getting. Worse yet, it sounds like if you guy this one new, you can’t share the experience with your family? The overall comments I’m finding online are very negative about this, and I have to say I fall into the same boat currently. A lot of people are saying they won’t buy the game at all. To be honest, I might not either until a year or so later if it’s heavily discounted used and feel like perhaps the value is better represented then. What are your thoughts?

Lastly, Sony has released some information on the PlayStation Plus – a new service meant to be competitive to Xbox Live. It certainly does a few of the same things, but more as well. As someone who just recently let his 360 Gold account lapse for the first time since getting a system 3 years ago, I’m going to be very curious what the response to this is. The good news is, they’re not taking anything away from the network. Want to play Lost Planet 2 online? You can still do that on the Playstation 3 network (unlike the 360 if you only have a Silver account). For this, I give tremendous props to Sony. Many people have picked on Sony for not offering a ‘nice’ of a system as the Xbox Live, but I have to tip my hat to Sony thus far. My kids can play Little Big Planet and Peggle and whatever else they like online without needing me to shell out for a Gold Account. I did just read yesterday that Microsoft is looking into a family gold package where 4 accounts can be made for $100 a year (which is a good deal when one considers that a single 1 year account generally runs around $50). But, I’d rather spend the $100 on a few games and just play for free on the Playstation Network if it’s all the same.
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