What If: The Slim Launched The PS3?

The fuse has been replaced on our time-travelling microwave and therefore Raen and I can travel to another timeline once again. This week, we asked the question: ‘What If the Slim PS3 was the launch PS3?’ You know the drill by now; the coat hanger was bent into shape, the tin foil was flapped with un-matched expertise by Raen; and I programmed the required 10 minute defrost into the cooking tool. Bing!

We found ourselves back in a completely fictional 2005 at the E3 Expo just as Sony took to the stage. With an atmosphere of un-rivalled anticipation, they said ‘Welcome to the Playstation 3’. The product was revealed and the room clapped and cheered. But, not having any experience of the ‘fat’ PS3 in this dimension, the reaction was probably the same. But this time around, Sony had decided to skip the initial period and went straight to their Slim idea for the launch. This gave them the impressive 125GB HDD to boast about as well as the quietness, the tidiness and of course the Blu-Ray. But, like I said, the impact of the quietness and tidiness was probably lost due to the fact that they had nothing to reference it to.

People were initially giddy with excitement, but they soon picked apart the unit and pointed out the negatives. With no backward capability and only a few slots for USB connection, people felt Sony had been a little lazy in it’s design. Raen and I restrained ourselves from blurting out the differences that we had obviously experienced. But there were only a few negatives arising.

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Japan and America saw the console first, a little later than our reality due to manufacturing problems. This may be a different dimension but it was obviously the same old Sony. But they quickly overcame these problems and they launched Worldwide in March 2007. They were originally marketing the Slim for £324.99 which, whilst expensive compared to our Slims, was cheap compared to our ‘fatties’. The PS3 was massively popular due to its competitive price and HD hardware that still came as standard. For the first year, the PS2 still outsold everything but once developers began to get used to the PS3, more and more true next-gen titles came to life. The 360 also out-performed the PS3 for the first year, but then Sony did something amazing. They advertised. It is worth mentioning that, in this universe, we had something to do with it. Myself and Raen stopped by the board meetings and decided to part some of our real-world experience by only saying ‘It only does everything.’ We know we shouldn’t interfere but we wanted to see what would happen if we cut a year out of Sony’s thinking. We were ejected from Sony’s HQ for being ‘weird’.

They advertised on TV, in cinemas, magazines and papers, and they even secured more deals for product placement than all mobile phone companies put together. Second-year sales soared and by Q3 2008 Sony had equalled Microsoft’s console sales. But people were now looking to the future. The PSOne became the PSX and the PS2 became the PS2 Slim. Due to Sony launching with the slim, their future hardware changes were thin on the ground. Gamers were baffled why no rumours of a slimmer model had surfaced and were losing faith in Sony’s commitment to the PS3, but it was still selling well. The best that Sony could offer at this point in time were larger HDDs, which didn’t set the world alight due to many gamers already having swapped the HDD themselves. But in 2010, Sony did something that astounded the gaming world. They did release a Slim PS3, so to you and me that would be a Slim Slim PS3. Secretive advancements in chip manufacturing and revolutionary cooling systems meant that Sony could release a console that was 20cm (w) x 25cm (d) x 9.5cm (h).

The world went Slim Slim crazy. A price reduction also accompanied the hardware and for the first time in any dimension so far, Sony overtook the 360 in terms of sales. The PS2 and Wii however were still a few million units ahead.

Unfortunately the microwave let out five beeps which meant we had to be going again. It was a shame. This was a universe filled with love for everyone and it was good to see Sony doing better than we had ever anticipated.

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