In March 2006 the original PlayStation ceased production. Eight months later, the PlayStation 3 was released.
This weekend it’s been confirmed that the PlayStation 2 has ended production worldwide, following earlier reports that the Japanese arm had built the very last machine. There’re no more PS2’s being produced, that’s it, so if you want a spare now’s the time to get down to wherever’s still brave enough to dedicate some shelf space to the console and pick one up new. To go along with the one you already have, of course.
What this means, perhaps, is that Sony is clearing space on a production line, however metaphorical that may be, for the PlayStation 4. If this next-generation is ushered in within the same sort of timescale (eight months) then this Christmas will be a very busy time for gamers.[drop2]Indeed, at CES this week, it’s expected that Sony (and, of course, Microsoft) will be showing their new hardware behind (very securely) closed doors. In theory, possibly, and in ugly grey boxes almost certainly, but there’s a more than reasonable chance that a few lucky invitees will see just what’s been cooking.
Sony did everything right with the PS2. It had great marketing, a huge amount of pre-release momentum and some great games over its life. It was a remarkably coherent machine, with unsurpassed third party support and some killer exclusives that will be remembered fondly.
The PS3 hasn’t had nearly as smooth a ride, and I don’t think I’m speaking out of turn by pointing out that Sony of late have been somewhat off the ball with regards to first party titles that haven’t always hit the mark and a portable console in the Vita that still appears to be struggling in a vastly different, now unfamiliar market. But Sony know consoles, and whilst they’ve got everything to prove with the PS4, I hope it’s as good as we all want it to be.
Whether or not it’ll match the loft heights of the PS2? We’ll see.