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Sony PlayStation (Games) Portables (Games) Games

PSP Go Debuts, Disappoints 258

Posted by Soulskill
from the they-don't-just-fail,-they-make-fail-better dept.
Sony has now officially launched the new version of their portable game console, the PSP Go, and the Opposable Thumbs blog took it for a spin to see how they liked it. Their impressions of the new hardware are almost entirely negative, despite being fans of the original PSP. One major point of contention was Sony's removal of the UMD drive in this revision, making it so you need to access the PlayStation Store to buy games. This kills price competition and used game sales in one fell swoop, while also making owners of any original PSP games unable to play them on the new hardware. The review says the new device looks sleek, but the dimensions make it somewhat cramped and awkward to use unless you have small hands. They also decry the switch to proprietary cables, and sum up their opinion by saying, "When your older, cheaper hardware is better and more able than your new offering, you need to fire some designers."
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PSP Go Debuts, Disappoints

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  • LOOK (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward

    It's Ridge Racer! Riiiiidge Racer!

  • Kills it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jurily (900488) <jurily@NOSPam.gmail.com> on Saturday October 03, 2009 @02:27AM (#29624579)

    This kills price competition and used game sales in one fell swoop, while also making owners of any original PSP games unable to play them on the new hardware.

    Translation: they killed the PSP.

    • They didn't kill the previous model, though, did they? This is just another model.

      When they were talking about it a few months back we (family, we all have PSPs) looked at it, thought, no UMD drive, meh, not for us, and noted that (at the time) the old version was still to be made, so this was a non-issue.

      You know, for kids who tend to be harder on things (and tend not to quite treat them as if they had spent hundreds of dollars on them, since generally, they didn't do that, the parents did), the no-

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        They didn't kill the previous model, though, did they? This is just another model.

        For now. Sony won't keep both models running forever.

        *snicker* To bring in all the "OMG THE PIRATES ARE COSTING JOBS OF HONEST CITIZENS!" excuse the industries batted around a while back, I can't help but laugh at them all running to download only where possible. One of the "main jobs" affected by "piracy" they cried, were drivers in the transport industry who would not have as much product to deliver and thus would lose thei

        • Sony are idiots for thinking this would work, but they're not total idiots; they're hedging their bets. That's why the old UMD-equipped PSP is not being pulled from production right now. It'll be pulled only if and when they see the Go having adequate sales. Right at the moment, given the reception the Go is getting, I'm not too worried about the UMD-equipped PSP going away.

    • Except that PSP Go is not a replacement (okay, maybe long-term it is).. they're still making and selling the PSP.

    • Well it was smelling already strangely before the PSP Go came out.
      I assume the PSP Go is DOA!

      • I assume the PSP Go is DOA!

        But. If you include the bad influence of "Sony" brand, then it is clear that it is the PSP is EOL.

        It's Sony we are talking about. *SONY*.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Translation: they killed the PSP.

      No, they're just trying to kill it.

      In my opinion they're looking to:
      1) take a larger share of the profit from game sales (what woud have been the physical manufacturing and distribution costs is now profit for Sony). I'm guessing that games will not be any cheaper and game developers/studios will not see any more money than they get currently.
      2) stamp out the market for second hand games. Online distribution will lock the game to the device, so no used games, and no lending a game to a friend. This is

    • Translation: they killed the PSP.

      But.. But.. But.. It's an app store!! All the software in one place, no shopping about.. How could it fail??

  • by QuoteMstr (55051) <dan.colascione@gmail.com> on Saturday October 03, 2009 @02:27AM (#29624581)

    Do we expect anything other than a locked-down proprietary anti-consumer mess out of Sony? After all, these are the people who gave us MiniDisc and the infamous anti-piracy rootkit.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Boycott BMG (1147385)
      I think you are taking things too far. Sony/BMG, the company that put the rootkit in the CDs, was not a part of Sony Corp. but was 50% owned by Sony and 50% owned by Bertelsmann. You also have to realize that Sony is, like other large multinational corporations, made up of a bunch of smaller companies doing things like pressing DVDs, manufacturing consumer electronics, and making movies. These smaller divisions probably aren't aware of each others activities to a very large extent. So anthropomorphizing
      • You also have to realize that Sony is, like other large multinational corporations, made up of a bunch of smaller companies doing things like pressing DVDs, manufacturing consumer electronics, and making movies. These smaller divisions probably aren't aware of each others activities to a very large extent. So anthropomorphizing Sony or any large corporation is pointless, and it is silly to assign a personality to any very large corporation, whether it be Sony, IBM, or even Microsoft.

        But there is some amusement value to be had when Sony/BMG bangs on about how ripping CDs to MP3 so you can listen to them on your MP3 player is bad, wrong and illegal whilst Sony is selling MP3 players that require you to do exactly that... (this dates from before the days when you could legally buy MP3s of much).

    • by AmiMoJo (196126)

      Actually it looked like Sony was mellowing out a bit for a while. The PS3 ran Linux and ordinary USB gamepads worked in most games. At the same time the XBOX 360 encrypted the gamepad protocol to lock 3rd parties out.

      This is just a return to form for Sony.

    • Though I kinda like my minidisc player - 12 years old and still going gracefully strong. At least Sony makes reliable hardware.

    • by RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) <taikiNO@SPAMcox.net> on Saturday October 03, 2009 @05:03AM (#29625025)

      Quite frankly, yes.

      Every PSP since the PSP1000 has used standard USB sockets.

      Sony's PlayStation3 has been the most pro-consumer console in the mass market. Standard USB controllers, headsets, keyboards, bluetooth headsets, etc. Not to mention i can hook up my PS3 to a monitor using HDMI to DVI with out the AV cable BLOCKING THE HDMI PORT. Or TOSLINK out to a receiver with a standard TV.

      See here. [chadledford.com]
      This picture makes me cringe and wonder if something is going to break. [chadledford.com]

    • Addendum:

      If you don't like the nonstandard USB port, the COMPLETELY STANDARD Bluetooth transfer option is available too.

    • by Wowsers (1151731)

      Whilst I HATE defending Sony, I will in the case of Minidisc. Mainly, the Minidisc came out before MP3 was anywhere in the market place. The recorder was proprietary, but it recorded high quality audio (although using ATRAC compression). If anyone had a portable audio DAT deck that died (I did), the Minidisc was the next best thing for recording high quality audio, and cheaper. As far as I recall, there were no Dolby-S equipped "Walkmans", let alone _portable_ Dolby-S consumer recorders.

      Only a few years lat

    • Can you compare Minidisc's format (ATRAC) to MP3 and tell a single difference between them? Don't be fooled by "free" offerings, MP3 is a damn proprietary codec owned by 2 companies and besides it was cleverly shipped as licensable, it is inferior to ATRAC, especially ATRAC3. If Sony had a little oversight for future, we would see .atr files instead of .mp3.

      You sound like there was a single other way to put 74 min high quality music to 160MB of space and Sony didn't choose it. Minidisc in physical form also

    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      I think this is the way all consoles will eventually end up. Games only available for download. No slots at all for plugging anything in, and the motherboard encased in black epoxy. Completely unmoddable. I think the general public has no interest in modding consoles. They will lose a few sales, but they will have exactly what they want.
    • by Gravatron (716477)
      The games division has always been more open though. I mean, look at how much off the shelf stuff you can use with the ps3. bluetooth headsets, usb keyboard and mice, printers, third-party hdd, etc.

      To have screwed the pooch so bad on the go isn't typical of SCEI.
  • Not exactly... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grasshoppa (657393) <skennedy@@@tpno-co...org> on Saturday October 03, 2009 @02:29AM (#29624587) Homepage

    "When your older, cheaper hardware is better and more able than your new offering, you need to fire some designers."

    No, you need to fire the managers who gave the specifications to the designers.

    • Re:Not exactly... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Jurily (900488) <jurily@NOSPam.gmail.com> on Saturday October 03, 2009 @02:37AM (#29624621)

      No, you need to fire the managers who gave the specifications to the designers.

      Actually, you need to rethink the whole decision structure.

      • Actually you have to rethink the entire mentality. Japan still has a lot of feudalistic mentality left, and that resembles in the companies behavioral structures. Japanese companies love to lock down their customers that way.
        Sony is one example, Nintendo the other.

        I assume the PSP Go was born out of that mentality actually the entire Sony mentality is like that, they only open up whenever they gut smacked hard on the head.

        Not sure why Apple also behaves like that I assume this is jobs doing who loves to be

        • by janimal (172428)

          Notice how Sony, Nintendo, and Apple make billions in profits. If the scheme lets them be rich, they have no reason to do it any other way.
          Closing options down is walking a fine line; lock out too much, and you scare customers away. But notice that Nintendo is number 1, which means they are pretty far from crossing the line. Apple is quite far from crossing it as well. Sony might have crossed it with the PSPgo, but who knows? I'm not the average PSPgo target gamer, and probably neither are you.

    • There's no way that management came up with this one. This is exactly the kind of hardware you'd expect from a designer with a vision, but out of touch with reality.
      It was designed to have longer battery life, be more portable, and rid itself from unnecessary clunk. Using spinning plastic for storage is wasteful in a modern handheld.

      What really screwed this one were the marketing decisions. Downloads should be cheaper than physical media, full stop. And system which is cheaper to make should be cheaper to b

    • by Kamineko (851857)
      "When your older, cheaper hardware is better and more able than your new offering...

      - your DRM is working just fine.

  • In the times we live in, everyone is attempting to nickle and dime you on everything. Airlines now charge for luggage (all but 1 in the USA), hotels charge for a phone line, whether you want it or use it or not, weird "fees" appear on various utility bills. The gaming industry has been attempting to stop used game sales by lobbying for legislation, but since that wasn't moving fast enough to yield short term profits, enter iPho.. I mean PSP Go. Why are we so surprised? Guess where the next generation of con

    • by 32771 (906153)

      Yeah! Sounds like we are really getting desperate.

      Personally I rather say its all a ripoff nowadays instead of being nickle and dimed since that somehow implies to me the ripperoffers need my help.

      When I'm in the store and notice things like that I usually mumble something about inflation. I guess I'm way too kind.

  • by KyoMamoru (985449) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @03:11AM (#29624707)
    Sony is competing with multiple markets that people aren't going view as legitimate. To them, the PSP isn't directly competing to the DS. They see it as something that is better than an Ipod Touch [same price point for a 16 gb unit]. So they view that a wise consumer is going to see 'I could get a DS, and an Ipod, or I could get a Psp!' The real world isn't working out to be that way though. Sony has classic tunnel vision.
  • by mpapet (761907) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @03:35AM (#29624765) Homepage

    you need to access the PlayStation Store to buy games. This kills price competition and used game sales in one fell swoop,
    Ahhh sweet, sweet capitalism. Manufacturers go to great lengths to eliminate competition. This is a big win for Sony, consumers won't care.

      while also making owners of any original PSP games unable to play them on the new hardware.
    That's the point. Buy expensive Sony hardware today! Yesterday's purchase means nothing to them.

    They also decry the switch to proprietary cables
    ditto. Sony's not going to get rich on this, but they are taking advantage of consumers pleasure of owning expensive jails. Many ./ers will get one and tons more kids will have them.

    This will go over good-enough. Sony will certainly come out richer for it. We, as consumers, are poorer for it.

  • PSN ToS unacceptable (Score:3, Interesting)

    by seebs (15766) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @03:51AM (#29624801) Homepage

    To me, anyway -- the complete and (in some versions of the document -- there's more than one!) exclusive worldwide rights to any "user created content" -- any data you ever upload through the service -- are too much. I do not trust Sony on the other hand of an agreement like that. Conclusion: No PSN for me. Thus, no games for the PSP Go. Idiots.

    • by Gravatron (716477)
      What, praytell, do you think you'd be uploading that you could turn around and resell, is private, etc? Stuff like user created wallpaper isn't sent though that service. I can't think of anything, in fact, that sony lets you upload though PSN anyways. Levels, mods, etc, would be covered under the games ToS and such, rather then PSN's. Then again, I doubt you even thought about that before starting your ToS rant anyways.
  • by vesuri (162076) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @03:53AM (#29624813) Homepage

    First the press claimed that the UMD format sucks and that the PSP is too bulky to be carried around. At that time they were probably right. Now the same people are claiming that getting rid of the UMD format sucks and that the PSPgo is too small.

    When Apple came up with the App Store for the iPhone and iPod Touch the press was excited and rejoicing over the new age of digital distribution. Now it's Sony's turn and suddenly it's a bad thing.

    Well, boo-hoo. It's always nice to be able to complain about something even if that would mean contradicting yourself. This is madness.

    I have the original PSP-1000 but that didn't stop me getting a PSPgo. I can play those UMD games on the old system if I want but since it's so big I rarely carry it around. The Go!Explore GPS package, however, is very useful in the car.

    The PSPgo is finally small enough to be carried around and I'm happy to buy new content over the air. I don't need the old UMDs or chargers on it. I can use them with the old system since that's what they're for. The system is very sleek and I really enjoy it.

    I also have the iPod Touch. No matter how much Apple wants you to think it's a gaming device it really isn't - at least for all types of games. I've really missed the control buttons. Thanks Sony for bringing us a real gaming system that can actually be taken with you.

    • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @04:19AM (#29624893) Journal

      The PSP Go isn't grasped so much as it lies on the top of your hands. The reason is the sliding top and the shoulder buttons that are on the bottom part. So your fingers can't naturaly "grasp" the top because there the sliding top gets in the way. If you got big fingers, then the PSP Go is lying on top of your hand and that is really akward.

      People are not saying UMD is suddenly a wonderfull format, but it is the format that PSP owners got their existing games in, with no way to transfer them. How difficult would it have been to allow transfer from old PSP's to PSP Go's?

      The PSP Go is NOT a new platform, there is no generation difference. As said in the Ars review, this would be like making the PS3 Slim 250gb not have a bluray drive.

      The problem AIN'T with the digital store itself, it is about the sudden removal of the all the existing games FOR THE EXACT SAME PLATFORM.

      Apples iPhone/iThouch NEVER had physical media. And did Apple with the iTouch make it impossible to use songs previously bought with iTunes? No. For Apple to have pulled the same, they would have to create an iPhone store and make it impossible to use iTunes bought songs on it. Hell, for that matter to make it impossible to use mp3's. Has Apple done any of this? No.

      But you are right, Apple gets away with far more then Sony does. iTunes and the App store have indeed also meant the end of the bargain bin and 2nd hand songs/software. Non-apple fan boys do indeed mention this from time to time, but get modden down by people who think Jobs is the second coming.

      To get back to your main point. Sony had mentioned that there would be some kind of system to get the games you already paid for, to play on the PSP Go. To not allow this (and to have lied about it) means that you got to question who they are aiming at?

      1. People who previously didn't buy a PSP? The Go is more expensive, the PS3 gots its sales boost from a price reduction. Does Sony think they can do the same with a price increase?

      2. Old PSP owners. They want to play the games they already own and not pay for them again.

      3. People with to much money. AKA You. An intresting segment of the market, but in todays economy?

      Sorry mate, but I think Sony made a mistake here. The more money then brains market is rather shallow. Most people, especially now, want MORE value for LESS money.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        The problem AIN'T with the digital store itself, it is about the sudden removal of the all the existing games FOR THE EXACT SAME PLATFORM.

        As you say, this and the inability to transfer games from UMD to your PSP Go make it a non-starter. At least the DSi still has a DS slot, right?

        But you are right, Apple gets away with far more then Sony does. iTunes and the App store have indeed also meant the end of the bargain bin and 2nd hand songs/software.

        I don't really disagree with you, but at least Apple hasn't switched media. I bet you can redownload all your apps to your new iPhone, right? We'll see if they're really "worse" than Sony when the iPhone goes through some major iteration.

        If Sony could have created kiosks that eat your UMDs permanently and convert them to digital downloads, this would have virtually

        • by Gravatron (716477)
          They wanted to allow UMD copying. They even said they hoped to have it by launch. Guess who killed that idea?

          The copyright holders, IE, the developers and publishers. You see, There would be little to nothing to prevent you form buying one UMD copy, and then having each of your friends rip it. That's a massive loss of revenue for the developers, so they put that idea down hard.

          The result? A service sony was counting on now doesn't exist.
          • by drinkypoo (153816)

            The result? A service sony was counting on now doesn't exist.

            The logical thing to do would have been to have a trade-in service, where you trade the game and a small fee for the right to download the game. You could do it via mail-in or via exchange at a Sony store for a lesser price, or maybe even free (to get you in the door.) It would be good for everyone, except for the publishers who are expecting people to re-buy their games. I think most of them will be sadly disappointed; a few titles will have a high rebuy rate, but most will languish. It's probably only a m

      • Physical media? Forget it.

        Old PSP owners ? They are flying bi-planes, do you want Sony to allow them to attach the second wing on the jet the PSP Go is ? Forget it.

        For people with to much money ? Downloads were, are and always will be cheaper. AppStore clearly shows the competition drops prices to sane levels pretty quick. Do you somehow in your mind believe that the physical media allow price competition ? How ? Forget it.
      • by Mr. DOS (1276020)

        iTunes and the App store have indeed also meant the end of the bargain bin...

        Not an Apple fanboi by any means at all, but I don't understand it when people say this about iTunes. Sure, you may be less likely to peruse it, but as long as you have an optical drive in your computer that can read CD's, the bargain bin is still a valid source of music.

        I totally agree with you from the software aspect of this, though. I think iTunes and Steam are two of the worst software distribution systems ever, because they s

    • by LoRdTAW (99712)

      When Apple came up with the App Store for the iPhone and iPod Touch the press was excited and rejoicing over the new age of digital distribution. Now it's Sony's turn and suddenly it's a bad thing.

      Apple did not have a physical distribution system before the app store. Sony had an acceptable, physical method for distributing games. Sure some people didn't like it because it was more propriety Sony BS, but it was there and it worked. There is a difference between introducing a platform with digital only distr

    • PSN has been around longer than the iPhone app store. Sony has been at it longer than Apple.

      It's largely a painless process to migrate too, unless you're so hamfisted it's not kosher to shake your hand.

    • I think what you're saying people are saying is not what people are actually saying (in other words, you're setting up a straw man argument).

      First the press claimed that the UMD format sucks and that the PSP is too bulky to be carried around. At that time they were probably right. Now the same people are claiming that getting rid of the UMD format sucks and that the PSPgo is too small.

      Actually, most of the complaints that I see center around the cost. On one hand, this thing clearly costs less to manufactu

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        Wow, you are Sony's dream demographic -- people who like getting punched in the face and will repeatedly line up for more.

        I would imagine that there will be a larger repurchase market than you or I might have at first believed. If you think about it, the PSP is a big pile of shit; the battery life is poor and UMD was a stupid idea when they had it the first time. The price of flash media has come down so rapidly that they could have put only a memory stick slot (or maybe two of 'em!) into the PSP and had it all work out. I imagine they thought they were preventing piracy or something; look how well that worked out. In any case

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      First the press claimed that the UMD format sucks and that the PSP is too bulky to be carried around. At that time they were probably right. Now the same people are claiming that getting rid of the UMD format sucks and that the PSPgo is too small.

      Both parties are correct. Using UMD was stupid. Abandoning it now and expecting people to repurchase games or maintain two Sony handhelds is also stupid. Sony painted themselves into a corner by using shitty media, and now there is no way for them to proceed that does not have major flaws, except perhaps having a UMD peripheral for the PSP Go. It would be a seriously suboptimal solution, and I can't imagine it actually happening, but it's the only way to move forward that doesn't piss off your customers. Id

  • ...the fact that the battery is not 'user serviceable', which means they took away the battery door, put a warranty sticker over the battery and will charge you to replace the battery. Fun, eh?
    • by DrXym (126579)
      ...the fact that the battery is not 'user serviceable', which means they took away the battery door, put a warranty sticker over the battery and will charge you to replace the battery. Fun, eh?

      I wish someone like the EU would put the smackdown on companies that do this. The only reason to seal a battery into a device is to motivate people to buy a new device when it dies. Excuses about form factor or whatever are bullshit as most handphones demonstrate all too readily.

    • You gotta thank a company from Cupertino opening the door for such absurd things and its "community" defending it. If nobody comes up with the idea of multiple game stores, competing in prices and service (like Symbian land), it is that companies success (!) too. Nobody asks for competition anymore, ein device, ein distribution point, ein community.

      If it is wasn't the case, the idea of buying an high end expensive phone/device and using no name, untested batteries and ending up with a burned face etc. suing

    • by Gravatron (716477)
      the battery was how the pirates hacked the firmware. By removing access, they hoped to discourage it. It sucks, but its the fault of those who felt above paying for their games.
      • by Mr. DOS (1276020)

        Pardon me? Some (most?) just wanted homebrew, or to play emulated games from other consoles.

        Disclaimer: I have no PSP.

              --- Mr. DOS

      • A more legitimate usage in the case of the PSP, than other game systems' "homebrew" crowds, is to rip your UMDs to memory and play it off of there. Running a disc-drive on a portable system eats up the battery plenty, so putting it on a Memory Stick lengthens how long you can go between charges, and quickens loading times as well.
        Compare this to how PC gamers do the same thing, because they don't want to damage their retail discs, and it's a hassle to swap the discs in and out whenever they want to play a n

  • First off the new hardware is undoubtedly sexier and better than the old hardware. The form factor is smaller, it's lighter. It is a desirable piece of kit. Or it would be if Sony hadn't fucked up in so many other ways.

    The major problem is that the old PSP has a UMD drive and the new one doesn't. The millions of existing PSP owners are not going to upgrade if they can't take their games with them. If Sony had sold a peripheral that let people sync their collections (with occasional ownership checks), they

  • What Sony ought to do is offer to give you the electronic license to a PSP game if you sent in the original UMD. They could charge a small ($1-$2 per game) fee to cover the costs of this service.

    I predict that there would be almost as much griping by gamers and here on slashdot if they offered something like this. (because there would still be DRM, you'd be paying (a small fee) to continue using your current games, etc.

  • There's been two or so PSP versions so far. What use would another PSP with similar dimensions and UMD be?

    Obviously they don't want to go down the cartridge route and downloading games is becoming the norm now, see iPod/iPhone.

    So the format isn't the problem, it is how Sony have implemented it.

  • by Mark_in_Brazil (537925) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @06:25AM (#29625353)

    As long as Sony was going to a new design, why oh why did they not add a second thumbstick? Shooters and other console games tend to use two joysticks. in the case of shooters, one stick is used to control movement, while the other is used to control the camera angle. In PSP games, because there's only one joystick, each shooter series uses its own scheme to get around the lack of a second joystick. For what it's worth, I think the best control scheme in a PSP shooter is the one used in the Syphon Filter series. But what sucks is that when you switch games, the whole control scheme changes. It's frustrating when you push just the right buttons to do what you want... in the wrong game.

    They put a little depression on the face of the PSP Go in exactly the right place for the second thumbstick, but they put the START and SELECT buttons there. If they had put in another thumbstick and moved those buttons elsewhere, they might have revitalized the whole PSP playform. Ports of console games would have immediately become much easier, allowing the number of games for the platform to grow more quickly. New games could be written with more standard (read: better) control schemes. Backward compatibility would be trivial. The second joystick could simply be ignored by old games. Playing the old games would then be unchanged, while many new possibilities would be created.

    I have a PSP 1000, and even that is too small for me. When I try to play with just the PSP 1000 in my hand, it feels too small and fragile. I have an acrylic case that holds the PSP and protects it, and most important for me, gives me a big sturdy thing I don't feel like I'm going to break every time I play (yes, the DS was immediately rejected in part because of how flimsy it looked). I like the video out introduced in the PSP 2000, and I figure that with a good case, the 2000 might be decent.

    So to summarize, as Sony has made new versions of the PSP, they have focused on making it smaller and flimsier, a feature I do not want. They have removed the UMD drive, which does away with used game sales and price competition. But they have failed to correct the most glaring defect of the PSP platform since its inception: the lack of a second thumbstick. Well, I'm not a hardcore gamer, so Sony doesn't give a rat's ass about me or my opinion, but I'm keeping an eye on the Pandora [openpandora.org]. It's a platform that appears to have been, y'know, designed for gaming. It won't have firmware updates to block homebrew games, and no, that doesn't mean I'll only use free or pirated games. I'm perfectly happy buying PSP games, and I'll almost certainly buy some good games for the Pandora too.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by grumbel (592662)

      The problem is that the PSPgo is not new hardware, its just the same old PSP without UMD and internal flash. So adding another analog stick would have been rather weird for developers as they would now have to design two very different control schemes for the same game. That said, given how big an issue the lack of a second stick is they should just have done it anyway, that would have at least given people a reason to buy a PSPgo.

    • by Hadlock (143607)

      Seconding this. The second analog stick should have been added when the PSP3000 was released... 3 years ago? Has it been that long already? Maybe more. I hate to say it, but fuck the early adopters, you buy first generation hardware, you're going to get stuck with crappy controls. Dual Analog took three(?) years to come to fruition on the old PSX. Didn't seem to hurt their sales any. The idea that it only has one analog stick is just mind boggling. The DS will probably have dual analog sticks before Sony do

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      I'd like a Pandora too, but there's no way in hell I'm subsidizing their production by paying ahead of time. I am not that trusting. If you can't find investors, you probably don't deserve them.

  • Surprisingly, Sony made a couple of business decisions:
    - kill the second-hand game market, and force every one to buy from them, every time
    - force punters to buy a whole new set of peripherals, alos from them

    That's not a design problem. That's a company deciding to fleece its customers for every thing they can.

    Is anyone surprised ?

  • Since I can buy a 16GB memory stick for my PSP2000 and it's my understanding I can buy the same Playstation store games that PSP Go owners can buy. Even better I hear I can run custom firmware and then just load up some of the UMD's I own and run them from the memory stick.
  • by erroneus (253617) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @08:24AM (#29625827) Homepage

    Sony is far too interested in their media protection than in the products they sell to access the media.

    I don't disagree with the removal of the UMD from the machine. I think it made the PSP heavier than it needed to be. However, the UMD should still be available as an external or clip-on device so that games that users already own can be effectively transferred to memory stick or internal storage.

    I think Sony over estimates the harm done by copyright infringement. Infringers are still an elite few. It's not likely to be a number higher than 10% by my guess. And yet they assault their entire customer base with changes and revisions and updates trying to stop PSP modding and game copying and all that. I have had problems with nearly all Sony consumer devices I have owned except those that are exclusively A/V. (TV, Camcorder and a DVD player) Their computers suck, their Clie' palm devices die with non-replaceable batteries making them useless after a while. I just don't buy Sony gear.

    I have broken with my own rule regarding Sony not long ago, however. I was trying to sell my XBox360 what had a red ring of death condition, code 0102. It was already a refurb unit so I don't expect that MS would support it, so I listed it on craigslist. Someone responded with an offer to trade his PSP 1000. It works fine, has some scratches, the X button is mushy, many of the printed/painted details are worn. The UMD works fine and this is my first experience with PSP and it is a surprisingly powerful and cool device. I modded it, of course, and now play everyone off of an 8GB memory stick.

    The PSP Go then became an interest for me as removing the UMD doesn't bother me as long as there are modders out there figuring out how to get my games on it. I think that by removing the UMD completely, Sony just encouraged even more hacking of the PSP and have discouraged the other 90% of their good base of users with what ultimately amounts to their prioritizing content control over the quality of the user experience. Sure, the content is all the more tightly controlled now... the problem is, fewer people care about the content because it will be harder to access.

  • If I remember correctly, every time an article on the PSP came up, people on here kept saying how stupid it was to have a UMD drive. Now everyone seems to think it is stupid NOT to have one. This is like the Snakes on a Plane of consoles. They probably thought people meant what they said on the internet.

    Still probably isn't a terrible move for Sony even if it doesn't sell too well, as I suspect that they are moving toward convergence with cell phones and that this is a mere incremental improvement.

    • by Jesus_666 (702802)
      Actually, the move away from the (in my eyes still weird) UMD format would be universally seen as a good thing - if it had been done with the PSP's successor. The gripe people are having is that the Go is essentially a more expensive PSP that doesn't work with all PSP games.

      Yes, the UMD should go away but not at the price of breaking compatibility with current-generation games that used to work on previous releases of the same device. No matter how cumbersome your media format is, you don't break compatib
  • Inevitable. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MaWeiTao (908546) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @11:14AM (#29627101)

    I'm convinced the single largest mistake Sony made with the PSP Go was charging too much for it. If it had cost roughly as much as a regular PSP people would be complaining less about the other changes. I realize, however, that the new form factor has likely added to the price of this thing, but then therein lies the source of this problem.

    What Sony should have done was offer an updated PSP in the same form factor as the original, but simply eliminate the UMD drive and then promote the functionality they're currently pushing with the Go. This would ensure costs stay down, and in fact, probably give Sony the opportunity to charge even less for this new PSP. Additionally, it wouldn't make existing PSP owners feel like they're being left behind.

    While I prefer owning physical copies of my games, going to a download only model doesn't bother me. I personally think not being able to purchase used games is a non-issue because I never do so. I feel that, with the exclusion of buying from an individual, the used games market is a scam anyway. You're not paying much less than full price for a used game. I can go online, and sometimes retailers like Target, and find new games for the same or less than what places like Gamestop are charging for a used game.

    And that's where the problem lies. With the PSP Go will we only be able to buy games via Sony? This pretty much ensures Sony has complete control over pricing. In the very least, I expect downloadable games to cost $5 to $10 less than an actual physical copy. And will games be discounted as they age and decline in popularity? I should hope so.

    Unfortunately, I think this is the way of the future. It's already starting and Sony was simply the first to take such a bold step in that direction. Too many people have grown comfortable with micro-payments and overpaying for products and services. It's going to be next to impossible to stop this tide. The PSP Go might flop simply because it entered the market a bit too soon.

  • Battery life (Score:3, Informative)

    by Spatial (1235392) on Saturday October 03, 2009 @01:25PM (#29628187)
    Is the battery life better now that the UMD drive has been removed?

    If you're running custom firmware on the x000 models, using an ISO of your game preserves a chunk of battery life. (not to mention loading times)

    Despite the fundamental importance of operating time in a portable, Sony seems has no interest in improving it. They improve the efficiency of the console each revision and LOWER the battery capacity so the lifespan remains unchanged. The 2000 series weighs almost nothing so I don't understand what they're thinking by doing this.

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