2009, The Year That Was 2008, And May Become 2010

It’s Friday, which means it’s time for more words of wisdom and a bit of SONY bashing.

SONY, you are a tease. Nobody likes a tease, mind you, that is why they often, after having been forced there, emerge from behind a bush with their knickers around their ankles and their mascara running. Then, even as they are giving their statement to the men in blue they know what that judging glint in their eyes means. They know what they are thinking, they know they think it is their own fault for being such a bleeding tease.

Well, SONY, ever since E3 2005 you have been the biggest tease imaginable, so if I were you I would abstain from taking strolls through the park after dark, because you know I am going to be waiting for you there, and don’t even think about struggling or bringing mace, you deserve it.


The collective minds of the Internet were blown during your keynote speech for E3 2005, I watched it live via some website, and unlike most people the only thing of mine which was blown was my right brow, causing it to raise slightly. I could see that all you were showing us was a bunch of pre-rendered concept trailers for games. Then not too long after pulling off that scam and setting our hopes so high that it rubbed shoulders with stars, you managed to reveal to us that instead of looking up we should look for our hopes somewhere in that deep ditch, because that was where it belonged. We got our first glimpses at actual game footage and our hearts sank. Then the PS3 was delayed by almost a year in most of the world and by well over a year in Europe. Thanks for that by the way, but I did manage to get mine from overseas at launch through a friend, so I was good.

Meanwhile your competitors were slowly building up steam and before you knew it they were waving goodbye as they passed you by, about the same time people were shooting each other over coveted PS3 units to be sold on EBay, for a loss no less. Indeed 2006 was not a good year and 2007 started off as pretty much a disaster when a strange new trend of hating SONY swooped over the globe. In 2006 your loyal fans thought to themselves, “well, Q1 2007 is looking pretty sweet with all those games coming out, we can wait that long.” Then it turned out that the chrono-retarded date plotters in the industry had struck once again, as pretty much all the games slated for Q1 2007 were pushed to Q3 2007 and beyond.

Then when they finally did come out most of them turned out to blow whale giblets. At the same time your competitor was busy discharging his amazingly large, thick and sticky load all over the poor sods, millions as they were, who were attracted to its amazingly mediocre consistency and the unnatural overhyped qualities it possessed. In short, things were looking pretty bleak, not even the amazing GDC surprise unveil of Home, Little Big Planet and the amazing Killzone 2 E3 2007 video were effective when all the momentum they were designed to give you was punched in the gonads by the Delay Fairy giving each of them a savage beating with his delay stick. Not to mention Metal Gear Solid 4, the promised saviour of 2007 that was to show the wandering gamers out of the desert and deliver them to the promised land decided that not even his divine powers were a match for how much 2007 had been bollocksed up, and so did jump ship to 2008 as well.

Then people, me among them, started to realise something, when looking past at all the multi million selling items of your competitor, hailing directly from the Emperor’s new wardrobe, it was hard to miss the fact that their release schedule looked admittedly empty for 2008. Pretty soon the Internet meme was born claiming 2008 sure to be the year of the PlayStation. Your competitor recovering from his recent orgy of million seller exclusives was apparently going to sit this year out to recuperate and replenish his bountiful mojo. It looked like 2008 was going to be a stellar year for the PS3, the year the old champion was finally going to get some punches in.

Yes, your competitor having knocked himself out was chilling his jewels in an ice bowl due to them overheating after the all out clusterfuck he unleashed upon you in 2007. So, we all thought, SONY, old boy, you’ve learned your lesson, to never again underestimate your competitor or overestimate your own strength. We all thought you were going to sprint into 2008 chest protruding, arms swinging and head held high. But low and behold, 2008 rolls in and we see you half sleepily sitting on the couch pulling gunk out of you navel, what the hell?

Recently you held “PlayStation Day 2008”, where people expected you to unveil your overall strategy for 2008, sure half of the year is pretty much already gone with that finger still being stuck you know where. But surely you would pull it out, surely, at least half the year is still here, right? You didn’t of course, it seems your strategy for 2008 is to take that carrot you dangled in front of gamers faces to get them from 2007 into 2008 and now slyly move it over to dangle in 2009 instead. Brilliant, SONY, brilliant, kudos for the cost saving forward thinking way of attracting new gamers and keeping the old. Instead of giving them concrete things to consume and enjoy just continually tease and entice them by lifting your skirt and giving them a peek at what lies just beyond the horizon, just a short year away. Yeah, let us all wait for next year, it is sure to be amazing, too bad it will always be a year away.

Where is White Knight Story, Final Fantasy XIII and Infamous? Not even announced for 2009 it seems. Killzone 2? Well, no one in their right mind thought they were going to see it Q1 2008, but we sure as hell were counting on holiday season 2008, alas, delayed by a year, to 2009 it went to join all its other friends. Not to mention that whatever momentum it had is slowly seeping out of it as gameplay footage is showing nothing there to look forward to beyond stunning visuals.

Pray tell, what then of the next game from the ultra talented gods from Team ICO? Not even announced yet, count yourself lucky if it turns up in 2009. God of War III, then? You only did tease us with it, and I quote, “coming soon”, on the back of the Chains of Olympus booklet. 2008? Yeah, right, dream on. 2009 then? Maybe. 2010 then perhaps? Definitely a much more realistic timeline for a game that you prolly just started working on. But if so why even bother with the tease? Perhaps with all those delays the people populating your marketing anthill actually think that 2 years – 24 months – is somehow soon?

So what are we looking at this year, Metal Gear Solid 4, the fashionably late saviour of yesteryear and Little Big Planet at the very, very end of the year, maybe, if we pray to a dark god and do a pagan dance around a pole of human sacrifices, then maybe. Resistance 2, yay! Insomniac always delivers on their release dates, right? Indeed they do, unfortunately Resistance 2 is looking about as generic as the first one and this time it does not have the luxury of being the only somewhat drinkable mud puddle in the dry desert of a console launch. Then there is the eternally omnipresent Home, the latest news from that corner is that the Beta will come late 2008 with the full release maybe following sometime in 2009, huzzah! Adding to this you have recently stated that perhaps marketing Home aggressively to advertisers and sponsors while pretty much totally ignoring the gamers was perhaps the wrong approach to that as of yet undefined service. Great, if it took you over a year to come to that little gem of wisdom then it suddenly seems much more clear why things keep getting delayed over there.

SONY, I sincerely hope that the whole 10 year life cycle thing is not just a fart joke you are passing around over there at the head office. Because with everything on your side getting continually bludgeoned with 1-2 year delays it would seem that while your competitors sheit all came into its own in 2006 the PS3 is c
urrently scheduled to have its testicles finally drop sometime in 2009, a short 3 years after launch. The average console cycle being approximately 5-6 years means that by the time you are busy planning that bar mitzvah celebrating PS3’s crossing into manhood, you have 2, maybe 3 years before your competitor can happily abandon this generation, leaving everyone satisfied, while you will get hisses and claws if you even think about doing the same that soon.

Jaysus on a stick, 2008 sucks a dried cactus! Thank god I got a 60GB PS3 and plenty of PS2 games I still want to play otherwise I might have cared, for my own sake. I do however care about 2008 for your sake, SONY, the year was wide open for you to gain lost ground, but all you seem to be doing is gloating over the fact that you managed to overtake the competition in Europe. Yeah, it did happen, but so help me gods if you make even the tiniest try to attribute it happening to anything but pure clean dumb luck. Because then I will be tempted to ask you what it was you did for Europe to deserve it? Was the PS3 launched here first? Oh, no it wasn’t. Do we get more demos, downloadables and free crap via the PSN? Oh, no we don’t. But I also got a Canadian and Japanese PSN account, so I am good. Did we get the Dual Shock 3 here yet? Oh, right, no, but I did import mine from Japan over 6 months ago, so I am good. Better prices and deals here? Nope. Better bundles perhaps? Nope, not even a Dual Shock 3 with the Metal Gear Solid 4 bundle.

Yeah, SONY, you sure did right by your loyal European fans, you really fully deserve all the support you got from us, you ungrateful sodding git.