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PlayStation (Games) Portables (Games)

PSP Delayed Into 2005? 254

Posted by Zonk
from the hype-counter-hype dept.
Thanks to the numerous readers who alerted us to the Gamespot article mentioning that the PSP may be delayed until next year. This analysis comes from games industry analysts and is the result of Sony's game title weakness and battery issues. David Jenkins at Gamasutra has additional analysis as well.
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PSP Delayed Into 2005?

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  • by Maul (83993) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:45PM (#10443463) Journal
    What were the launch titles for this handheld supposed to be anyway?
    • by zonker (1158) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:53PM (#10443589) Homepage Journal
      super pixelated fighter 3, long drawn out rpg XI, beatem-up-shootemup 4, basketball slammer 2005, scary things jump out at you 3: the deadening, fast swurvy car drivin' 5...

      same old crap that's released on the ps2 but now its portable and will likely cost twice as much to get 'in the game'! woot! ;p
    • I was about to reply based on my own limited knowledge ( from reading a few magazine articles here and there ), about how Gran Turismo 4 and a bunch of other games had demoed at E3, then I realized, you know what? You should know how to use Google [google.com] by now. Jeesh.

      But, since you're lazy and I'm bored of work... well, let's just say there are a very, very large number, many of which have already been seen in some sort of playable demo form, so it's less likely the release list the fact that Sony just hit all of

      • that is to say, I don't think the release list of games was a problem until Sony circulated their battery usage limits.

        Darn if I use preview, then don't notice my mistakes anyway. If you don't know what I'm talking about, I left a few key words out of my above post, rendering it even more senseless than usual.

  • by delta_avi_delta (813412) <dave.murphy@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:45PM (#10443471)
    ... as far as Nintendo is concerned
    • Re:There is a God (Score:2, Interesting)

      by FuzzzyLogik (592766) *
      yea.. right.. nintendo would destroy this thing... more features, better games, and longer battery life. PSP is dead before it even came out.. it would be neat to try but i wouldn't buy one.. especially for the rumored $350.. i'd buy a ps3 instead
      • Whats really funny about "I can buy 2 of x for the cost of y" is why would you want to buy 2 handhelds? Well if you bought two nintendo DS's instead of one PSP then you could always make friends with multiplayer. If you bought two PSP's instead of a crappy car that still runs, then you can sit alone. In your room. Crying.
  • They can't wait... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by FortKnox (169099) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:46PM (#10443483) Homepage Journal
    If the next gen gameboy is released first, they are doomed. Whether its technically a better system or not won't really matter. Look at the Sega handhelds. They've always been a much better product than the gameboy, but they still couldn't crack it.

    Not to sound like some terrible MBA, but unless there are SERIOUS defects to the PSP, I'd try to get the jump on Nintendo, especially in the handheld market.
    • by minus_273 (174041)
      i dont think any sega handhelds were better than gameboy. I fell for the color screen.. game gear sucked batteries so quickly, you could hardly play anything. In my book, good battery life is a requirement for technical superiority.
      • I have both an AC adapter and a car adapter for mine, which helps a whole lot.

        Although, I think one big reason the Gameboy was more popular is that the Game Gear is so freaking BIG! The gameboy fit in a pocket, so it was much easier to carry around.
    • by HAKdragon (193605)
      Look at the Sega handhelds. They've always been a much better product than the gameboy, but they still couldn't crack it.

      Sega has only released one handheld, the Gamegear.
      • by d3kk (644538)
        Wrong. They released the Nomad in 1995, which was essentially a portable Genesis.
      • "Sega has only released one handheld, the Gamegear."

        Sega Nomad.
      • In the US they also released the Genesis (Mega Drive) Nomad, basically a portable Mega Drive. It also sucked batteries like there's no tomorrow. It apparently has a nice screen. Another high quality product from the Sega of America useless variations on the Mega Drive (sorry, Hardware Development) division.[1]

        [1] Well, apart from the not-Dreamcast, which led to Sega being sued by 3DFX, and EA (a 3DFX shareholder) not making games for Dreamcast.
    • by wastingtape (576230) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:55PM (#10443615) Homepage
      I think the reason the Gamboy over took Sega as far as the handheld gaming market went was because it came bundled with Tetris. When was the last time you saw a game so accepted by such a wide range of people? Sonic while fun and exicitng, only appealed to a fraction of the age group that Tetris did. I remember being in Elementary school and having to ask for my Gameboy back from my mom (who incidentally liked the "puzzle game" on it).

      I've always held that the key to any game system is the games that run on it; simple, fun, and open ended games. I think Tetris is a really good example of a hit title booming a certain market.
    • by Ohm2k (262274)
      How can they rush it out? The DS is looking at a Mid/late November release here in the states. Any PSP release would be rushed and lacking software for months. The psp also has a much higher price working agenst it. the DS @150 clams isn't something you plan to buy. You can walk in off the street, see it on the shelf and buy it w/o much thought. Now 250? 299? You do a little more research and ho humming and buy less software for it when you get the box from behind the counter.

      First out of the gate isn't al
    • by Achoi77 (669484) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @03:00PM (#10443684)
      If Sony isn't worrying about it, then they definately have long term goals in mind. Besides, with that price point almost no parent is going to shell that kind of money for their 10 year old, and even the DS is somewhat getting close to the edge at $150. Everybody knows that the magic number is less than 3 digits. Perhaps sony is waiting untill manufacturing costs are low enough (in addition to all the other red tape issues, that is)?

      I think the current targets sony is looking at is mostly the ipod demographic. Nice highend gear that people will not mind having. When the new revision comes out, last years model starts to trickle down to the lower end, affordable types. The trick is, if Sony is able to maintain momentum, then Nintendo is doomed forever.

      Nintendo of course, will have to go with the blitz and take as much of Sony's thunder away from them before it strikes. Plus, Nintendo can also play the new revision model game as well and come out with an even cheaper DS, which will definately dominate. I'm curious how this will play out. I'm a huge nintendo fanboy (on a waitlist for the DS at a local store), but Sony's got as much of a chance as Nintendo, especially with the bankroll to back it up. We'll just have to see as it rolls out.

      • by vhold (175219)
        I totally think Sony is playing the PSP for the long term. A lot of people are making a lot of comparisons to all the other failed platforms but what I don't think any of them are realizing is that we are talking about Sony.

        Is it not the most unbelievable thing in the world that the Minidisc is still on shelves? How much of a failure was that? Didn't the original players/recorders cost like $500? Is anybody even buying it now? Who knows, but for some reason you can still buy them and they are now down
      • An interesting idea, but I don't see it happening short of selling at a loss, or cutting the features, or waiting until its really too late.

        At this point, it's not even DS vs. PSP. They're still up against the existing GBA, with its ungodly sales figures, massive library, and still lots of new release which will probably continue little abated after the DS is released. The DS is really an enhanced GBA. Not every game, especially not early on, is likely to take advantage of its new features to an extent tha
    • by stratjakt (596332) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @03:05PM (#10443747) Journal
      The gameboy hasn't gone up against a better all around handheld. Each of it's competitors failed in an area it had covered.

      Sega Gamegear: Battery life you could measure in minutes. Couldn't even get me through a lunchhour when I was in high school.

      Turbo Xpress: Battery life, and cost. The thing was damn expensive. By the time it came out, TurboGrafx was dead/dying which limited its future.

      Sega Nomad: Batteries, and size. Ever held one? That sucker is huge. It's worth it to a hardcore genesis fan, of course.

      Atari Lynx: Poor game selection, battery life.

      NeoGeo Pocket: Poor game selection, released by a dying company. Never really had a chance with GBA announced.

      Wonderswan/GP32/game.com/etc: Too obscure to really mention (in north american markets, at least).

      My predictions for PSP?: Battery life, load times, and fragility of the game discs will kill it. GBA carts can take a pretty good beating, and don't mind being stuffed in your back pocket all day. For that matter, neither does the SP.
      • by Toby_Tyke (797359)
        "Atari Lynx: Poor game selection, battery life."

        Plus the fact that it was the size and weight of a pair of house bricks. It was more of a laptop than a hand held. Ate through batteries like they were going out of fashion and I would just like to point out, for the record, California games was shit.

        Damn. Been waiting over a decade to get that off my chest. Yes. I bought one.
      • by Ayaress (662020) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @05:38PM (#10445450) Journal
        I wouldn't worry so much about the game disks as the moving parts in the drive. I've had a cople laptops die hard on me, and its always the moving parts that get it. A laptop usually gets handled well, too - its own padded case, and owners typically treat them with kid gloves. A portable game device, on the other hand, typically gets treated like dirt. They get dropped, tossed around, shoved into pockets and bookbags along with god knows what else, left in the car on hot summer/cold winter days, and so on. My GBA has survived all that, plus pulling double duty as a bookmark and getting closed in a door. I can easily see a PSP joining so many laptops in the Great LAN in the Sky for nothing else but that drive.
      • The Nomad sucks if you are a hardcore Genesis fan. It doesn't play several important games, notable among them Forgotten Worlds. At least, my known-good FW cart wouldn't play in my Nomad. So, I sold it. You can always get a late model handheld and run a genesis emulator to play that stuff.
    • by poot_rootbeer (188613) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @03:07PM (#10443768)
      Look at the Sega handhelds. They've always been a much better product than the gameboy, but they still couldn't crack it.

      Speaking of crack, are you on it? The Game Gear was twice the form factor of the original GameBoy, used 50% more batteries and had less than half the playtime. Not to mention, Nintendo still had the Konamis and Capcoms of the world locked to exclusive contracts, while Sega had low-rent European software houses churning out mediocre ports of Genesis titles.

      I owned both, and although the GameBoy had fewer colors, a lower-resolution screen, and a weaker CPU, it was still by far the more fun of the two. I think this is because the designers didn't try to make a device that was just a battery-powered version of an existing home console, but rather made a device that was specifically suited for portable gaming, even though it had fewer bells and whistles.

      That's why the GameBoy family is on its nth hardware generation right now, while the Lynx, the Game Gear, the Nomad, the TurboXpress, the NeoGeo Pocket, and all the others never made it past two.
      • According to the gamasutra-news, PSP currently has 90min battery life.... Which would mean 40 or 50 minutes if you use rechargebles.
        That would be even worse then the worst expectations.

        But why did ANYBODY believe that just because "they are sony" they could pack that much of cpu and 3d power in a little package and expect to work it a tolerable time with a few batteries?
        • "But why did ANYBODY believe that just because "they are sony" they could pack that much of cpu and 3d power in a little package and expect to work it a tolerable time with a few batteries?"

          Bad question - haven't you seen the idiots jumping around and talking about how the "Cell processor" is gonna have the power of 50 Crays?

          -Erwos
          • Yeah. And i remember that time when they claimed that the ps2 would be so fast that every graphics workstation would look like a toy, so that they would release a professional version....
        • PSP currently has 90min battery life.... Which would mean 40 or 50 minutes if you use rechargebles. Depends on what rechargeables. I had a set of very expensive AAA batteries that I used in my TI-86, old GB and GBC. They were very nice, and I could run the GBC half again as long with them as with regular Duracells. They cost me nearly $20 each, though, but they were worth it. I haven't bought a single AAA battery since, and I've used them in everything (even built myself a little thing out of wood and elec
      • Heck, the GameBoy Color had much worse graphics than any of the original Game Boy's competitors, but it was much more successful.

        And I think it's rather telling that you can walk into a Wal-Mart or Target and still be able to find GameBoy Color games for sale. Amazing graphics just really doesn't seem to be what's driving the handheld console market at all.
  • Hmm.... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Benw5483 (731259) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:47PM (#10443495) Homepage
    Could the real reason be that they don't want to directly compete with Nintendo's cheaply priced handheld or even that they don't want to draw sales away from their new PS2 model?

    Seems like Sony didn't think too far ahead when they planned on releasing this in Q4 2004.

    • Re:Hmm.... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Chris_Jefferson (581445) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @03:40PM (#10444181) Homepage
      Or could this be exactly the same as the PS1 vs. saturn and PS2 vs. dreamcast, where people won't buy the currently out console because Sony swears that any days now they'll have "The greatest thing that ever happened in your life, ever" (anyone remember the 'emotion engine'?) coming out "any day now", which just continues slipping further and further back?

      I'm not a Sony hater, but I would have expected people to have spotted the pattern by now..
      • Nah, I don't see that working here. The gameboy is proven badass fun. Add in bluetooth and wifi and it's even better. The whole extra touch screen is just gravy.
  • DS (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Mike Rubits (818811)
    Could this be one of the first nails in the coffin for the PSP, with the DS beating it to market by several months? In the console market, the PS2 was able to gain a huge advantage by being first out. This could be crippling for the PSP if Nintendo plays their cards right.

    2005 should be an interesting year for handhelds.
    • Re:DS (Score:3, Informative)

      by alphaseven (540122)
      In the console market, the PS2 was able to gain a huge advantage by being first out.

      On the other hand, the Dreamcast came out before the PS2 and was doing okay at first till the PS2 came out. And the SNES was successful despite the Genesis having a big head start. In consoles being first isn't a guarantee of success. Still, I think the DS is looking good.

      • by bob65 (590395)
        What does being "first" mean anyways? If a console comes out late enough, it could be perceived as being "first" of the next generation.
  • Not supprised (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lightdarkness (791960) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:48PM (#10443503) Homepage Journal
    Not supprising at all that it was delayed. Companies set really early release dates to stir up hype, then push them back a little, because they arn't done; People don't mind either because they are used to delays.
  • Well (Score:3, Funny)

    by bigtangringo (800328) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:48PM (#10443511) Homepage
    Can't say much about game title weakness, Sony tends to be pretty strong there. Maybe they should dump some cash into the research of those nuclear batteries?
  • Good! (Score:4, Funny)

    by RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) <{taiki} {at} {cox.net}> on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:48PM (#10443516)
    Lets me recover from the financial hit that is the Dual Screen...
  • by SansTinfoilHat (759207) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @02:56PM (#10443627)
    If they were to rush out a product simply to come to market at the same time as the DS, you all would accuse them of underhanded tactics to flood the market with an unfinished product.

    And if you RTFA you will see: "the securities firm expects the handheld 'to launch later than the current March 2005 expectation". It was already going to be a 2005 launch, now it will just be a Christmas season launch. I'd rather have a good system a year from now than a poorly designed system right now. Of course, Nintendo chose the other route with the GBA, releasing a barely playable system as soon as they could and then a vastly superior GBA SP a year(ish) later.

    Better product = We all win.
    • There was nothing wrong with the original GBA, I'd hardly call it "barely playable". And it wasn't rushed to market, there was no need. They delayed it forever, offering up the GB Color as a stop-gap. I remember reading about the next-gen gameboy before the N64 came out.

      The SP wasn't a year later, either, it was more like 2, even 3.

      The SP is much better, no doubt. It also cost (and still does) twice as much. But the backlit display just wasn't practical with the original, and that was it's only short
    • GBA barely playable? Only major complaint I've ever heard about the original GBA was the lack of a backlight, and frankly I've always personally considered that complaint to be incredibly overblown.

      Maybe I'm just lucky and have oddly good vision, but having played through quite a few GBA games(many of which with dark color schemes and the like), only Castlevania: Circle of the Moon had any visibility problems. I'm curious, given my own experience, why there have been such harsh complaints about the orig
      • I never saw so much whining about the screen when GBC came out.

        GBC HAS THE EXACT SAME SCREEN! (Just fewer pixels).

        So yeah, its definitely strange that so many people are complaining about it because it didn't really take THAT much light to get a good image. The reflective TFT in that sure beats the crap out of the transmissive TFT in earlier systems like Game Gear.

        You may very well be right about the point on people assuming CotM was represenative of the system's contrast on the whole. I found it to
        • But the fact of the matter was that having fewer pixels and a -drastically- small color palette that you didn't need to be able to get as much light reflecting off the screen to not feel like you were missing something.

          Aka, take original gameboy tetris and put it in the original GBA and play it just fine, then put in metroid zero and spaz out because you're desperately trying to get it angled just right so that you can actually tell if it's a regular or super bomb door. It was workable, but the difference
        • Lies.

          I did the pepsi challenge between the color and the original gba.

          Took two copies of the exact same gbc game, booted them, and look at them side-by-side (think it was zelda dx or whatever its called). The colors on the GBC were distnly more vivid and visible in a low-light situation.

          I belive the gba was actually providing less power to the screen to conserve battery life (or a more power efficient screen), resulting in duller color response.

          You try it.
      • I don't know, maybe my GBA sucked. You either needed a flood lamp or be sitting in the noon-time sun on a cloudless day to see it clearly.
        • That is why people installed the Afterburner mod.

          I think a GBA with an afterburner is a better system than the GBA SP. Afterburner was a sidelight mod that effectively gives the GBA a brighter light than the SP's, and has the option of adjusting the light intensity too.

          Also, SP felt creaky to me, looks cheap and the control buttons didn't have the same size or feel of the GBA. Before then, the only GB I had was the original "brick" GB. I bought an SP, I couldn't get past level 9 in Tetris. I then boug
  • Reversal of fortunes (Score:3, Interesting)

    by celerityfm (181760) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @03:14PM (#10443869) Journal
    So what your saying here is that instead of the usual Sony releases first, followed by a more powerful Nintendo product (Playstation, N64 and PS2/Gamecube)-- we now have Nintendo releasing hardware first followed by SONY'S more powerful product (DS/PSP).

    So, will Nintendo's head start here give them the same benefits that Sony had from their head start? Or are the PSP and DS so different from each other that they aren't competing for the same gaming dollars? Or both?
    • There is no trend here, because the Gamecube is less powerful than the PS2. It's big upside was that it is a lot easier to develop for than the PS2.
      • How's the GameCube less powerful?

        Where's PS2's HDTV video modes?
        • How's the GameCube less powerful?
          The PS2 just has a lot of hardware. 3 vector FPUs, 16-pipeline graphics unit, graphics memory connected via a 2048-bit bus, etc. It's total geometry rate is twice as much as the Gamecubes, and it's fill rate is four times as much. It's just much harder to program for than either the GC or the XBox.
  • *GASP* (Score:5, Funny)

    by LoudMusic (199347) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @03:20PM (#10443925)
    An electronics device that is also part of the video game industry ... DELAYED!?! How can this be!

    Seriously.
  • Hmm it seems to me that there are two big reasons for pushing the PSP back into 2006. The first is battery life as many here have already noted. Given recent news about Sony's instructions to developers with respect to battery life and now this possible delay, I'd say this is serious. A wild guess would be that so far they haven't been able to get at least 3 hours out of the thing.

    The second thing is the whole Gran Turismo mess. Most recently, it was announced that GT 4 for the PS2 would be released withou
    • >A wild guess would be that so far they haven't been able to get at least 3 hours out of the thing.
      90 minutes. 90 FUCKING minutes according to gamasutra. Thats WELL below the "usable at all" limit IMHO. 6h with my Thungsten E is annoyingly short, and i use it only 20 minutes or so a day....
  • Why do you guys ride on such a big FUD issued by those clueless 'analysts'? RTFA, nothing is confirmed at all. Only 2 firms sent clueless words to get attention. If it's Linux related, you'll run to guess who funds those firms, but browsing posts above ecstatic fanbois quickly filled there apparently.
  • When was PSP's release moved up to 2004?

    I thought it was always 2005.
  • Nothing to see... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by adam31 (817930) <adam31@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @03:54PM (#10444328)
    Does anyone realize there is absolutely nothing new here of any substance? Some nitwit at TGS reporting that demo builds (read: months old) aren't done, and that some other launch titles aren't showing?!

    FUD about battery life "problems". Sony has said from day 1 that developers shouldn't stream content. This should be obvious to everybody!

    The real issue here is that Sony just isn't saying anything. See, the media gets nervous when there is no news... since that's their job. So they have to make up the news. Except that Sony has done an excellent job about keeping their secrets, so this is what we get. Rumors and hunches.

    Trust me, you'll know more when Sony marketing deems it exactly the right moment.

    • by Naffer (720686) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @04:24PM (#10444726) Journal
      What fun is a large disk storage medium if you can't stream content. The PSP is supposed to have 32 megabytes of RAM. So lets say that you're writing a game and you're not streaming content from the disk. Ok, we need more data, lets go ahead and spin up the disk, read out 32 megabytes, and then spin it back down.

      The largest advantage a cartridge has is low power consumption and access times. If you're spinning down a disk, you're going to have to spin it back up to get more data. Maybe you're supposed to make entire levels fit in RAM? Perfect, except now you're limitting yourself to a few dozen megabytes per level, completely negating the whole point of a big storage medium. I've got it, we can include 15 minutes of FMV! Oops! We have to stream that too.
      • by adam31 (817930)
        Maybe you're supposed to make entire levels fit in RAM? Perfect, except now you're limitting yourself to a few dozen megabytes per level

        Quite true. You'd be amazed at how far a dozen megabytes can go. And not necessarily the whole level, but just next few chunks that the player can go.

        The real issue is that this isn't something being sprung on developers at the last moment, it's something they all read in the specs and have planned for from the beginning.

        It's not really even more complex. You just

    • FUD about battery life "problems". Sony has said from day 1 that developers shouldn't stream content. This should be obvious to everybody!

      This is the one aspect of the PSP that I NEVER could comprehend...I said so over a year ago.

      There are SO MANY BIG PS2 games that rely heavily on the concept of streaming. Without streaming, their environments would be duller and have more repetitive textures. Streaming allows game designers to create vibrant worlds and REALLY use up the capacity offered by a CD-ROM,
  • by Pingsmoth (249222)
    They fumbled the GameCube launch pretty bad, and haven't exactly done much to fix the situation, but so far they have shown every sign of continuing their handheld dominance. DS has Picto Chat, touch-screen technology, dual-screens, and other true gaming innovations. PSP has...PS2 games that you can play in the car. The DS is also going to be released just in time for the holidays, and if the PSP really is delayed, it's going to be a long road for Sony to travel to even catch up to Nintendo.
  • by SetupWeasel (54062) on Tuesday October 05, 2004 @06:41PM (#10445954) Homepage
    That judging from the readiness of each system at E3, Nintendo did not create the DS in answer to the PSP. If anything Sony caught wind that Nintendo was developing the DS and decided to compete.

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