PS3 Attitude

PlayStation 3 news, views, reviews and interviews from PS3 Attitude - a daily news site with bite! 100% philanthropic website - all revenues derived are donated to charity...

PS3 Attitude

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

MGS4 PS3 for sale on eBay; beauty or beast?

How about this for a mod?

The talented guys at Morpheon Mods have taken an original 60Gb PS3 (you know, the good one with all the extra ports, PS2 compatibility and card slots) and made it look like a minor work of art.

Not only have they fully branded the MGS4 one-off, but they managed to get it signed by both Hideo Kojima and Yumi Kikuchi.

In addition, they've modified a case and packed it with all sorts of related, hard-to-get-hold-of goodies.

As you know, we love charity at PS3 Attitude and it's good to see that 15% of the proceeds from the eBay auction for this MGS4 PS3 are going to Penny Arcade.

I better go an put another couple of tickets on for the Lotto, just in case...

So what do you think? Is this mod a beauty or a beast?

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Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Will digital distribution kill 'exclusivity'?

Whilst our friends at TheSixthAxis and sites like CVG speculate on whether Kojima-san will announce MGS5 at TGS 2009 for 'multiple platforms', we're standing back from the rumours and are offering you a debate instead.

Konami have been quoted as saying that they are not confirming MGS5 for the Xbox 360, but they are (unsurprisingly) looking at how to maximise their revenue by seeing if they could offer the next MGS game up as a multi-platform title.

The constraint on the X360 release of even the current MGS title is, of course, their reliance on DVD as their storage standard. BluRay offers the kind of space you need for a title like MGS 4 and 5, whereas DVD simply doesn't cut it.

So why bring the game out on disc-based media at all? In fact why bring any game after, say, 2010 out on a disc? By then, super-high-speed broadband will be fully adopted and hard disks will be even cheaper.

The other day, I even saw a 'terabyte laptop' available for sale at less than £1,000.

With Sony having had the foresight to allow customer upgradeable HDD units (mine is currently running 250Gb, but it could easily be a 1Tb drive by 2010), broadband and cable getting faster all the time, and successful P2P distribution models already running, digital distribution seems like the way forward (much to the chagrin of retail outlets like GAME and HMV).

Which begs the ultimate question; who needs 'exclusives' when the current unique selling point of the PS3 - BluRay - becomes obsolete?

Of course, there is one thing we're not mentioning. What the unique selling points of the PS3 going forward might be.

By 2010 we would expect that developers will start to really get to grips with the hardware and push out titles that look, feel and play heaps better than any other console or platform.

If that happens maybe the 'platform exclusive' is here to stay. If not, we don't really see why publishers and developers would put all their eggs in one basket once you take the storage and distribution element out of the equation.

Agree? Disagree? Your thoughts in the comments please...

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Friday, 5 September 2008

Create OctoCamo Suit, Be Seen/Unseen, Win MGS4 Bundle

Do your hear that internet? That's the sound of hundreds (thousands? millions?) of cosplayers dusting off their OctoCamo suits.

PlayStation.com wants to see your best OctoCamo suits in action, or rather not see your best OctoCamo suits in action. I don't know, maybe both:
The object of Solid Snake's Octocamo suit is not to be seen, but we're asking you to show us your best OctoCamo suit in action. Go figure. You'll be judged on creativity, humor and originality...so do your best and have fun with it.
To enter you must upload your 30 second or less video (screenshots/pictures are fair game too) to your favorite video/picture sharing site, name it "Metal Gear Solid 4 OctoCamo Entry" and send a link to playstation_community_support@playstation.sony.com.

Two grand prize winners will receive the oh-so-coveted limited edition Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots Bundle Pack. Oh, but only if you live in the US. Did I forget to mention that earlier? Me so sorry, but don't hate on me. Go to the SCEE forums and let your voice be heard.

US readers, good luck to you.
European readers, we will keep you in our thoughts.


Source [us.playstation.com]

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Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Kojima talks MGS5 and "new game"

It's not easy stepping away from something you've invested half your life in, especially if that something is a giant commercial success and revered by millions of people worldwide. Such is the conundrum Hideo Kojima has faced at the conclusion of each of the Metal Gear games and a challenge he faces yet again until, well, the next Metal Gear game it seems.

It's no secret that the Metal Gear franchise will continue with or without the imitable visionary director yet, when speaking in an exclusive Kikizo interview, Kojima-san dropped some hints that he will never fully hang up his camo-suit. Though clearly stating that he wishes to hand the reins over to younger members of staff, (co-writer and director Shuyo Murata being the likely candidate) Kojima-san does want to oversee MGS5 as producer while moving on and directing another game himself. The game in question remains a mystery though he tantalises us with: "[...] the thing that I am trying to work out right now is an idea that I had ten years ago, which I am still worried on the technical side whether it's possible or not, even today."

That said, he also admits that he's not ruling out the possibility of returning as director of a Metal Gear game, say, ten years from now (at 55 years of age) comparing himself to acclaimed Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki (the auteur behind such classics as Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away) who retires at the end of each film but always returns to his love of film-making. Either way, it seems Kojima-san will always have a guiding hand in Metal Gear while also following some other (probably equally awesome) avenues in gaming. This can only mean good things for all of us.

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Friday, 15 August 2008

Metal Gear Online European Championships announced

Konami has announced its first European Metal Gear Online Championship, with entrants competing to win a luxury trip to Tokyo.

Entry is open to over 18's from all PAL territories - if you fit the bill then visit the MGO European Competition site to register. The first competition will be held today.

Konami is planning to host four preliminary tournaments per week - each preliminary tournament will feature six players per team, with one back-up member, and will span 16 games of 16 teams competing within the ‘Team Deathmatch: Direct Elimination’ mode and with the maps changing each game. Each match will comprise one round of 15 minutes and the best two teams from each preliminary Tournament will advance to one of two European Final Tournaments.

The two European Final Tournaments featuring teams who win their preliminary rounds will be played in September, with 16 teams each competing for the main prize of a trip to Tokyo between 9th-13th of October where they will be entered for the Grand World Finals at this year’s Tokyo Game Show where further prizes await the successful teams!

So if you're mad-crazy for MGO, grab some talented friends and get your Snake on!

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Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Thumbs up for Metal Gear Solid 4

There are lots of things you can do in four minutes.

Some are more fun than others, but this Metal Gear Solid inspired video certainly ranks highly.

It turns out this is an advert for Metal Gear Acid! Mobile, but don't let that put you off. Quite simply you need to kick back, relax, turn up the volume and prepare your corset - just in case your sides try to split in the process.

Enjoy!

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Friday, 4 July 2008

Metal Gear Online continues to expand

We always knew Metal Gear Online (MGO) was going to get bigger over time, but we weren't expecting new game modes to appear quite so soon.

Our friends over at Ripten have discovered a new mode has gone live.

A new Metal Gear Online mode has made its way onto the game’s servers. Taking inspiration from the existing “Sneaking Mode”, which sees Snake use Octocamo to collect Dog-Tags from warring teams, this mode is a battle of two teams with different gear.

The mode consists of a Sneaking Team and a “Normal” Team going head to head. Like Snake, the Sneaking Team is stealth-equipped (thus virtually invisible) and to win must either eliminate all enemies or return KEROTAN or GA-KO to their goal. The defending team must defeat the sneaking team or keep KEROTAN or GA-KO safe to win.
Read the rest over at Ripten...

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Thursday, 26 June 2008

European PS Store update for 26th June

So, you downloaded the MGS Database from the US or Japanese stores and then realised it doesn't recognise your PAL game save data, huh?

Fear no more, as the EU version of the database wings its merry way onto our PS3s in today's update.

We also get the Commando 3 demo, a free WoW track for GH III, a new character for PAIN and Pursuit Force for the PSP.

There's a whole lot more PAIN content coming over the next few weeks, with new areas to smash through and additional characters, so 'Nigel' is just the beginning.

Here's the full list:

Games

Metal Gear Solid Database (free)
Pursuit Force - full PSP game (£14.99)

Demos (all free)

Wolf of the Battlefield: Commando 3

Add-ons

Guitar Hero III - World of Warcraft track pack (free)
PAIN - Nigel character pack (£0.69)

Videos (all free)

Call of Duty: World at War trailer
Prince of Persia trailer
PAIN Characters trailer
Prince Caspian movie trailer

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Monday, 23 June 2008

Fear not Europe; MGS Database is coming

The MGS Database that hit US and Japanese shores last Thursday will arrive in Europe this Thursday, 26th June.

Those of you that have downloaded the MGS Database from the US or Japanese Stores will have not doubt discovered that the add-on won't detect your PAL game save. Consequently, those of us that have completed Metal Gear Solid 4 can't access the MGS4 data in the database. This feature is included to protect new players from spoilers during their first playthrough.

So, if you did grab the Database already, delete it and get the European version on Thursday in order to enjoy the spoils of war.

"Metal Gear Solid 4 Database is a stunning – and completely free – companion to the series, and will answer any question pertaining to Hideo Kojima’s games and characters." - Konami

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Tuesday, 17 June 2008

MGS 4; PS3 Attitude Perfect Playthrough Plan

This article is intended for anyone who has played through Metal Gear Solid 4 at least once. If you haven't yet completed the game, bookmark this page and return to it after you have finished your first playthrough.

We're trying hard to keep this article 'spoiler free', but there's a chance something you'll read here may ruin your enjoyment of the game if you are a purist - if in doubt, don't read on!


So, you've completed Metal Gear Solid 4 at least once... well done! We hope you enjoyed your first playthrough of MGS4 as much as we did...

If you're still reading this and you haven't completed the game at least once, please bookmark this and come back to it later - this is your last warning!

So, since you've played through once, you've gained your first 'emblems'. You will gain these dependent on how you completed the game. Stealthy players may have gained the 'Inchworm' emblem for spending a lot of time on your stomach, for example. The more gung-ho of you may well have earned yourselves a 'Puma'.

There are 40 emblems to collect, so how do you plan a playthrough strategy that will help you unlock them all? Well, PS3 Attitude is here to help with the Perfect Playthrough Plan.

1. No-kill playthrough with 'Big Boss Hard' mode

Now that you know how to play MGS after your first complete, it's time to ramp up the difficulty.

The perfect no-kill playthrough in Big Boss Hard mode will gain you a number of difficult-to-achieve emblems.

You need to have less than 3 alert phases, zero kills, zero continues, use no rations/Regain/noodles, not use the Stealth Camouflage/Bandana and complete the game in less than 5 hours 30 minutes.

Doing this will get you the Fox Hound, Wolf, Octopus, Hound, Pigeon, Scorpion and Fox emblems.

This playthrough is great practice for the biggest challenge of all...

2. The 'Boss Extreme' playthrough

This is the hardest to achieve, but gains you the most audacious rewards. You need to start with Boss Extreme difficulty.

You then should play the game with zero alerts, zero kills, zero continues, use no rations/Regain/noodles, not use the Stealth Camouflage/Bandana, buy all weapons from Drebin's before the end of the game and complete the whole thing in less than 5 hours.

This incredible feat will net you the Big Boss, Mantis, Raven and Little Gray Emblems

3. The 'Menagerie' playthrough

We've called this one the Menagerie playthrough because it gains you more animal emblems than you'll find in your local zoo...

This is a fun playthrough that involves lots of killing, rolling and generally mucking about with the game. Ready for the checklist?

More than 150 alerts, more than 500 kills (and over 150 headshots), more than 50 continues, use rations/Regain/noodles/anything that restores your life gauge more than 50 times, be in Combat High more than 10 times, pick up over 400 weapons/items, crouch for over 2 hours 30 minutes, lay down for more than 60 minutes, jump or roll sideways more than 200 times, forward roll more than 100 times, cling to a wall for 1 hour or more, scan/inject more than 50 soldiers with the scanning plug/syringe, turn over 100 pages of your favourite Emotion/Playboy magazine, be in a box/drum for over 1 hour, 'hold up' more than 50 soldiers, body search more than 50 soldiers, get praised by the militia/rebels more than 25 times, give the militia/rebels more than 50 items, defeat over 100 enemies with CQC chokeholds - oh, and take more than 35 hours to complete the game.

We recommend trying to complete most of these in Acts I and II, and use the Stealth Camouflage to complete the more difficult elements of the game with ease.

This playthrough earns you the Chicken, Puma, Giant Panda, Crocodile, Cow, Pig, Hog, Hyena, Lobster, Inchworm, Frog, Scarab, Gecko, Bee, Rabbit, Tortoise, Gibbon, Ant, Hawk, Bluebird, Eagle and Bear emblems. It is also the perfect antidote to the Boss Extreme playthrough!

4. The 'Altair' playthrough

There are only two emblems left that you can gain in a single playthrough and they are the Assassin and Tarantula. The Assassin is the key emblem here, as it earns you the Altair costume.

You need to complete the game with over 50 knife kills or knife stuns, have 50 or more CQC holds, have less than 25 alerts, over 250 kills and less than 25 continues.

5. The rest

It isn't possible to work the remaining five emblems into a playthrough, so you will need to gain the Centipede, Spider, Jaguar, Panther and Leopard.

However, it is pretty easy to get these using Liquid Easy mode.

So - you will be playing MGS 4 for at least 60 hours before you can gain every emblem if you include the time you spent on your first playthrough. Who says games aren't good value for money?!

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Monday, 16 June 2008

21 hours later; MGS 4 review

Amazing to think that the Metal Gear saga has been 21 years in the making. Even more amazing that it took us almost exactly 21 hours to complete the first playthrough of Metal Gear Solid 4 - Solid Snake's swansong.

One hour per year - I wonder if that was in the game design like so many other clever and nostalgic references to MG and MGS titles gone by that appear in the game...

There will be no spoilers here - all I will tell you is how it felt to play, and complete, the most important PS3 exclusive of the year.

I'll be up front about it - I've had a problem with the Metal Gear Solid series over the years.

Whether I was playing MGS, MGS2, MGS3 or the PSP incarnation, the controls never felt quite right to me. There was always something frustrating about the way your character moved - whether it was Solid, Naked or Raiden - that led me to give away my position way too often. In a tactical espionage game, this was never a good trait.

As a result, despite having completed every MGS game (and Metal Gear on the MSX - the only one I've missed is MG2), I've never felt like playing through any of them more than once. I forced myself to play the 'second-half' of MGS2, just to experience life as Snake. Although I must say now, I was never one of the Raiden-haters and after his performance in MGS4, I like him more than ever now.

The controls in MGS 4, on the other hand, feel perfect. When you want to do something, it is easy to achieve and Snake responds to your commands with the accuracy you'd expect from an old war dog. Not only does this make life a lot easier, but it goes towards the complete sense of immersion this game creates.

And that is the key result of Kojima-san's brilliant game design - the immersion.

In order to assist this immersion over the years, MGS famously has turned to cinematic cut-scenes, but again there is a marked difference with MGS 4.

The cinematic elements of the story are filled with great cameos from Metal Gear favourites and are all well acted out. For the first time, the graphics in the scenes look the same as the graphics when you're playing, which adds to the level of immersion. Many times throughout you can look at the cut-scene from a different perspective and there are hundreds of 'flashbacks' to access that shows quick clips from previous games in the franchise.

Even the Codec is entertaining, thanks to the live video feed from the caller, and the mission briefings allow for all sorts of interaction using the little Mk. II robot.

The combination of the slick controls, the well-acted interactive cinematics and the natural flow from scene to gameplay combine towards the most complete of experiences. As a result, the cut-scenes never seem too long - they feel just like part of what you're doing to progress through the 'Acts'.

Everything feels like gameplay, even when you're not actually playing.

The result? I will play this title through again, and again. Already knowing what lies ahead and the achievements I have yet to complete, it would not be wrong for me to suggest that MGS 4 has at least 100 hours of gameplay in it - some people will play it for much longer than that.

Although MGS 4 is littered with references to the games that have gone before it, people who are new to the series can pick this up and play it without worrying about prior knowledge. Sure, some of the storyline might get lost on these ' Metal Gear Newbies', but MGS 4 never requires you to have an encyclopedic knowledge of all the characters and the timeline.

After a personal journey that takes in over 31 years of gaming, and 21 years of seeing Hideo Kojima's story unfold, the 21 hours I spent completing Metal Gear Solid 4 results in one clear statement - MGS 4 is a gaming masterpiece and everyone should experience it.

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Thursday, 12 June 2008

European PS Store update for 12th June

Looks like the MGS Effect is in full swing, since the European update is nothing to write home about for once.

Yes, there are a couple of demos, but we expect that since the biggest PS3 exclusive of the year just hit the streets, the guys at SCEE are too busy playing MGS to worry about the PS Store! The demo of Quake Wars will, at least, let you know why we thought it was worthy of the Big Three award in May...

Here's the (full) list:

Demos (all free)

Enemy Territory: Quake Wars [PS3 Attitude Big Three title]
Monster Madness

Add-ons

Guitar Hero III - Isle of Wight track pack (£3.99)

Videos (all free)

Haze interviews - two videos with Korn frontman Jonathan Davis
Metal Gear Solid 4 trailer

Wallpapers and Themes (all free)

Pixeljunk Monsters (x2)

Now, get back to finding all those MGS4 secrets...

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MGS4; Top 5 secret features



WARNING - Some of the following may contain spoilers...


It's MGS-Day around the world and so we thought we'd kick off with our five favourite game secrets. Kojima-san is famous for his 'extras' and sense of humour throughout the MGS series, and some of our favourite distractions make a return in MGS4 - only with a slight twist.

1. Emotion Magazines

Emotion Magazines are available from Drebin during your first play, but they have a secret contained within. After you have played the game through for the first time, read through the magazines again. A case of 'beast and then the beauty', you might say!

2. Secret interactive scenes

During the game you'll be treated to the usual high-quality cut-scenes. The game will tell you when to press [L1] to access the view through Snake's eyes.

But there are moments, especially in Act 2 when you're in the lab with Naomi, where you want to press [L1] without being prompted. For example, when Naomi reaches for the cigarette. We won't spoil the view, but suffice to say your Psyche meter goes up when you cop a look.

3. Play as Altair

As you'll remember from the April Fool's joke, there is an Altair costume available. Here's how to get it...

After your first play through the game, play again. You need to get greater than 50 knife kills or knife stuns, greater than 50 CQC holds and less than 25 discoveries. A tough challenge indeed, but you'll be rewarded with the 'Assassin Emblem' and the Altair Disguise.

4. Dancing enemies

The iPod in the game comes with a few tunes, but there are loads to unlock along the way. Thankfully, the tune you need for this secret comes with your iPod.

During the 'white world' phase of each 'Beauty Battle', play the song called Oishii Chuhan Seikatsu. You opponent (and Sunny in the video feed in the pause menu) will begin to dance! Don't get too close those - they may still attack.

5. Ghostbusting

There are 30 hidden ghosts in the game, some are famous faces from MGS1 and some are the development team of MGS4.

You need to look through the viewfinder of your camera and have the Sorrow Doll equipped as your current weapon.

When photos that include ghosts are viewed in the photo album, you get an extra option - Exorcise!

So that's our five favourite secrets in the biggest exclusive of the year. Do you know of any more?

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Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Metal Gear Solid 4; Father's Day edition

With just one day left until the most important PS3 Exclusive of the year arrives on our shelves and doorsteps, and only a few days until Father's Day, it seemed appropriate to bring the two events together.

As we mentioned in our 'Big Three' for June, MGS4 is a title that should be just as comfortable for 'newbies' to play as it is for seasoned MGS veterans, with a core plot-line that doesn't require prior knowledge of the series combined with many side-plots that point to the previous incarnations of the franchise.

However, we feel it is our duty to explain the origins of Solid Snake by way of his 'Dad'.

Big Boss was a central character in the original Metal Gear (which I remember playing all those years ago on the MSX platform). He was the leader of the special forces unit called FOXHOUND.
Sometimes known in the series as Naked Snake, Big Boss was thought of as 'The Greatest Warrior of the Twentieth Century.' Towards the end of Metal Gear, it is revealed that Big Boss is, in fact, the terrorist leader of an organisation named Outer Heaven.

Big Boss chose to deploy Solid Snake for the missions in the original Metal Gear as he considered him to be his most inexperienced soldier. However, because of the truth of Solid Snake's origins, Big Boss effectively ended up battling himself after revealing the truth of his allegiance.

You see, Solid Snake is in fact a clone of Big Boss. Along with his 'brothers', Liquid Snake and Solidus Snake (who together are referred to as 'Les Enfants Terribles'), they are designed to be the perfect warriors, born from the greatest of all.

Despite losing the battle in Metal Gear, Big Boss did not perish and returned in Metal Gear 2. In MG2, Big Boss has taken military control of Zanzibar Land along with his lieutenant, Gray Fox.

The truth about Solid Snake's father and the cloning experiments that led to his 'birth' were made apparent when Metal Gear Solid became available. In fact, the story was effectively changed - a practise not uncommon in films, comic books and TV shows - where previously stated facts are altered later in the series. Whilst Big Boss is dead by the time MGS was set, this 'new truth' shows he remained a key character in the franchise.

So key, in fact, that Big Boss returned in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater as the playable character and this is the title in which we refer to him as Naked Snake. MGS3 was a prequel to the events of Metal Gear and was set in 1964. During Operation Snake Eater he loses his eye in a battle against a young Revolver Ocelot, which results in the eye patch we see him wearing throughout the rest of the franchise - although as you'll read below, this is another area where the story has been altered throughout the years.

Big Boss returns as the playable character once more on the PSP in Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops, further underlining his importance to the series.

The loss of Big Boss' eye has been a good example of where the story of Metal Gear has been changed over the years. Originally, the eye patch was on his left eye and according to the MG2 manual, it stated that he also lost his left ear and limbs in the battle with Solid Snake. Following that original depiction, all future images of Big Boss showed he had lost his right eye. As you read above, MGS3 stated the loss of his eye to Revolver Ocelot.

The MGS3 reason has become the standard, but it all serves to point out that whilst the Metal Gear series has been one of the most enduring stories in gaming history, the plot and history haven't always been consistent.

So there you have it. A short history of the daddy of all daddies, and the reason why Solid Snake exists. Now that Solid Snake is an old man in the forthcoming MGS4, will he also spawn the next generation of warriors for the 21st century? I guess we'll just have to play and see...

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Monday, 2 June 2008

June jeopardy; PS3 Attitude Big Three

In May, we had the 'GTA Effect'. A title frankly so big it caused other publishers to run for the hills, making it difficult to pick two other good games to join the hotly anticipated 'instant classic'.

So is June similarly the month of the 'big boss' of gaming, pushing all other titles aside? Can we actually find three titles worthy of your time and attention?

Here's the rundown on the Big Three for June. Remember, the Big Three is based on UK and European titles that will launch in June only...

1. Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots [pre-order game] [pre-order game + official headset] [pre-rent]

Finally, the PS3 gets the exclusive it so richly deserves.

With so much talk recently around the 'business of exclusives' and whether Sony should be paying publishers for the sole rights to a game, it's nice to leave the financial issues behind us and simply revel in the final chapter of Snake's story.

There are a few things that make MGS4 really stand out from the crowd. First, let's talk about lineage.

If you are an MGS devotee, there is plenty to keep you happy in MGS4. As well as the main storyline, many of your questions about the series will be answered with side stories and plot lines that help tie up a whole bunch of loose ends. But you don't have to have played any of the previous titles to understand MGS4 - the game welcomes those that are new to the 20+ year old franchise without making you feel lost or left out.

Secondly, MGS4 is truly epic. The graphics are incredible - sure - but they are backed up by the kind of sound effects and audio accompaniment that will make you want to buy a surround-sound system if you don't already have one! Kojima-san certainly knows how to make you feel like you are truly part of something great.

Lastly, the sheer scale, size and scope of the game doesn't overwhelm the smallest of details. Without giving away anything, you will be truly amazed at the depth and attention to detail MGS4 has to offer.

It is one of the year's biggest games - probably one of the decade's biggest to be fair - so make sure you get your copy come June 12th. Sorry GTA, but you just got bumped...

2. Lego Indiana Jones - The Original Adventures [pre-order]

Providing a nice change of pace for us older gamers, and a title that younger players not suited to the ravages of war can enjoy, the second of our picks goes to TT's first Lego game outside of the Star Wars universe.

Like every other Lego game from TT, this is a slick and easy-to-love game that reminds you how much fun video games can be. The trademark humour, great level design and extensive replay options are all here to enjoy, only this time you're switching your light sabre for a whip and a gun.

There are a couple of new game mechanics in this Lego title to keep things fresh, but nothing that doesn't fit with the series as a whole so this won't feel unlike any of the other games TT have produced.

With this title and Lego Batman on the way in 2008, we'll predict that in next year's Develop 100, TT will remain one of the highest regarded and best performing UK developers.

3. Battlefield: Bad Company [pre-order]

The one thing that will strike you when you play Battlefield: Bad Company is the game's versatility.

Whereas most shooters claim to have different ways to clear the area before moving on to the next checkpoint, B:BC is a lesson in how to do it properly. If you can see it, you can use it to your advantage - indeed, you will have to in order to progress.

Another thing you will notice is the graphics. The guys at DICE have managed to give everything a dirty, dusty and gritty look. They wanted to make you feel like you were kicking around in the grit and grime, and whilst the graphics aren't anywhere near as polished as CoD4 or MGS4, they have their own unique quality that stands out from the shooter crowd.

Mix in some cool characters and a smattering of humour and you have a game that's well worth picking up.

So that's the Big Three for June. There are certainly no shortage of games to play this month - there are no signs of the 'run for the hills' tactics that publishers took when GTA: IV launched - but these three stand out as the exceptional games of the month. Don't you agree?

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Friday, 30 May 2008

MGS4 poll results and update

We asked you if you wanted cut scenes in MGS4 that last up to 90 minutes long, and you answered in your hundreds.

Here are the results:

Love it - bring on the popcorn - 79%
Leave it - bring on the refund - 11%
Loathe it - bring on the 'skip' button - 10%

Since the poll ran, there have been a lot of other reviewers debunk the 90-minute cut-scene story that PSW Magazine printed, but everyone agrees the scenes are still lengthy. As you can see in our results, it's clear most of you want to see the full extent of Snake's 'final' story.

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Thursday, 29 May 2008

European PS Store update for 29th May

It has been one of the titles that we feel has been held back for far too long, especially since the US version gained an update that allowed you to select various languages over a month ago, but Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix is finally here.

In addition, there's an Army of Two map pack, Rayman (PS1) and MediEvil Resurrection (PSP).

Here's the full list:

Games

Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix (£6.99)
Rayman - PS1 game for PS3/PSP (£3.49)
MediEvil Resurrection - PSP game (£14.99)

Add-ons

Army of Two Veteran map pack (free)

Videos (all free)

Metal Gear Solid 4 - E3 Trailer
Overlord - Trailer
Super Stardust HD - Solo & Teamplay Trailer

Wallpapers & Themes (all free)

PixelJunk Monsters wallpaper
Prince of Persia wallpaper (x2)

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Wednesday, 28 May 2008

GameFlirt Most Wanted chart for May

Exclusive to PS3 Attitude, we bring you the monthly 'most wanted' PS3 charts at GameFlirt

GameFlirt are one of the UK's top games rental companies, and you won't find this information anywhere else - not even at the GameFlirt website.

Like the often seen Netflix charts for US movie titles, it's a great indicator of what's hot in the PS3 community.

Haze has taken over as the number one rental, pushing Assassin's Creed into second place, which is unsurprising following the wide range of scores the game received. The rest of the current rental chart remains the same, with Ridge Racer being pushed off the Top 5 by Haze's arrival.

Metal Gear Solid 4 remains the number one pre-rent title and both Race Driver: GRID and Top Spin 3 enter the chart to replace Haze and GTA: IV. GTA: IV only remained on the chart for one month and the game hasn't appeared in a current rental slot, which indicates that pretty much everyone decided to buy rather than rent.

Here are the charts in full.

Top 5 current rentals year-to-date:

1 - Haze
2 - Assassin's Creed
3 - Blacksite
4 - Unreal Tournament III
5 - Devil May Cry 4



Top 5 pre-ordered games for April:

1 - Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
2 - Mercenaries 2
3 - Race Driver: GRID
4 - Top Spin 3
5 - Monster Madness


Many thanks to GameFlirt for providing the data.

Click any of the links to visit GameFlirt for more details and to rent or pre-rent the titles. As a thank you to our readers anyone who signs up for the GameFlirt service via these links will receive 10 days free rental.

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Friday, 23 May 2008

MGS4; 90-minute cut-scenes - do you want them?

The word is out.

According to PSW magazine, who have played MGS4 through to the end, some of the cut-scenes (not one, but some) weigh in at almost 90 minutes each.

90 minutes! That's as long as I expect for a full movie - in fact if movies go over 90 the minute mark they really have to be good or I start to lose interest.

Of course, some people think a 3-hour movie is a good thing.

The good news - you can skip or pause them now, but you might be missing out on the story, which is supposedly epic.

So here's the burning question - do you, the MGS4 buying public, really want cut-scenes that are the length of the average feature film?



[UPDATE] The poll is now closed and the results are in

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Thursday, 22 May 2008

19 incredible MGS4 screenshots

With MGS4 just around the corner, it time to start getting ready for what could be the biggest PS3 Exclusive of the year.

Start by taking a good long look at the incredible screenshots.

MGS4 Screenshots


Have they whetted your appetite? You can pre-order the standard version for delivery to your doorstep on launch day (June 12th), or go for the bundle that includes the official branded bluetooth headset - the choice is yours...

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Wednesday, 14 May 2008

MGS4: the first ten minutes

Yesterday, Konami threw a 'it's done and dusted' party for the press in Tokyo where Hideo Kojima played around 40 minutes of MGS4.

Here's the first ten minutes for your delectation, courtesy of GameVideos.

I don't need to add any witty prose - the video speaks for itself.

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Monday, 12 May 2008

Konami confirm UK MGS4 limited edition and pre-order bonus

We had heard about this pack through various sources, but until Konami themselves said it was true, we've held back on reporting it.

But today Konami have confirmed that a limited edition of Metal Gear Solid 4 will hit UK shores. In addition, they have partnered with various UK retail outlets to provide a pre-order bonus.

Consumers that pre-order at certain retailers (list not yet confirmed) will gain the Metal Gear Saga Vol. 2 DVD - a seven-part documentary detailing the origins of previous Metal Gear games and the evolution of Hideo Kojima’s epic series.

The limited edition version of the game includes a soundtrack CD, a 6” 'Old Snake' action figurine, and an exclusive ‘Making Of’ Blu-ray disc. The Blu-ray disc contains two high-definition documentaries which offer a candid, behind-the-scenes look at the development of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots, with interviews with series creator Hideo Kojima and key Kojima Productions personnel.

The Limited Edition will carry a £79.99 RRP.

“Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots is rightly seen as the stand-out title for 2008, and we were determined to come up with something special for its launch. With interest so high, it is only right that we reward fans of the series for pre-ordering the game, and the Metal Gear Saga DVD is a stunning look at how the series has evolved into the phenomenon it has become. Likewise, the Limited Edition is a celebration of all things Metal Gear, and will be prized by those who buy it.” - Martin Schneider, European Marketing Director for Konami Digital Entertainment GmbH.

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Monday, 28 April 2008

GameFlirt Most Wanted chart for April

Exclusive to PS3 Attitude, we bring you the monthly 'most wanted' PS3 charts at GameFlirt

GameFlirt are one of the UK's top games rental companies, and you won't find this information anywhere else - not even at the GameFlirt website.

Like the often seen Netflix charts for US movie titles, it's a great indicator of what's hot in the PS3 community.

Assassin's Creed continue to be the number one rental. In the course of running these charts, we've noticed that critically acclaimed games don't tend to stay around for too long since it would appear people would rather buy the game instead. What does this say about Assassin's Creed? It's too early to say, but the general consensus of opinion appears to be 'great look, repetitive gameplay, worth renting'.

In the meantime, Oblivion and Army of Two have dropped off the chart altogether.

Metal Gear Solid 4 remains the number one pre-rent title and GTA: IV has finally made an appearance, although coming in at fourth place suggests that most people will be buying their copy outright. Which makes us wonder if consumers are just a little wary of MGS4 and whether it really is as good as the preview videos would suggest.

Here are the charts in full.

Top 5 current rentals year-to-date:

1 - Assassin's Creed
2 - Blacksite
3 - Unreal Tournament III
4 - Devil May Cry 4
5 - Ridge Racer 7


Top 5 pre-ordered games for April:

1 - Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
2 - Haze
3 - Mercenaries 2
4 - Grand Theft Auto 4
5 - Monster Madness



Many thanks to GameFlirt for providing the data.

Click any of the links to visit GameFlirt for more details and to rent or pre-rent the titles. As a thank you to our readers anyone who signs up for the GameFlirt service via these links will receive 10 days free rental.

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Friday, 25 April 2008

MGO beta back online; official word from Konami

Here's the latest from Konami Europe on the MGO beta:

We would first like to offer our most sincere apologies to all participants of the "METAL GEAR ONLINE PREMIERE BETA" test for all inconveniences caused thus far. At the same time, we would like to inform you details of the possible causes of the problem along with the actions we have taken in order to resolve them.

KONAMI ID

Initial problems were caused by the extraordinary numbers of customers trying to login to the site in order to create a KONAMI ID in order to take part in the beta test. In response, we have increased server capacity as well as creating a separate KONAMI ID registration site specifically for customer wanting to take part in the "METAL GEAR ONLINE PREMIERE BETA" test.

METAL GEAR ONLINE PREMIERE BETA test

In order to reduce the load on our server, we have implemented a queing system where the number of players that can login to the server is kept at a certain level over a period of time. Added to this, the client has been updated so that the time out settings when logging in have been relaxed. This may though, lead to a longer wait when trying to login.

At peak times, you may be placed in a queue for places in our server. In such a case, we would like to recommend that you try to login after a period of time.

It was also discovered that connecting to the server on creating and registering your character was very difficult. This again, was due to very high levels of traffic. We have increased server capacity and have also improved both the system performance and the server program in response .

We will be carrying out further improvements between 00:00 on 04/26/2008 with the start of the beta test as the game is scheduled to enter full service on 06/12/2008. We would like to apologize once again for all inconveniences caused.

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Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Metal Gear Online beta debacle; news update

A quick update on the MGO beta debacle.

Yesterday, Konami updated their guidance on when the beta would be relaunched in Europe, and the official date is 25th April - this Friday.

Worryingly though, this isn't a completely 'solid' date (do you see what we did there?). No, the date is in fact a little more 'liquid' than we expected (stop, please stop!).

Konami have put a catch-all in the press release that says the date is subject to change if they have any further issues.

It is a beta, after all.

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Monday, 21 April 2008

MGO Beta debacle; official word from Konami

The Metal Gear Online Beta debacle continues with an official statement from Konami on the difficulties everyone has had setting up the various Konami and Game IDs:


IMPORTANT NOTICE for all METAL GEAR ONLINE PREMIERE BETA players

We would like to thank all players for their keen interest in taking part in the beta test. However, we regret to inform you that due to extraordinary levels of traffic from all around the globe, we have been unable to run the service to the level we expected. As a temporary measure, we will be deferring the start of the US public beta test until we are able to stabilize our server.

We would like to apologize for all inconveniences as well as confusion caused. We would like to add that due to the above reasons, we will be making the following changes to the schedule:

1) Starting date: TBA. We will be making another announcement on 22/4/2008 23:00(PDT)
2) Beta Test closure: This will now be on 11/05/2008 at 24:00(PDT) rather than 06/05/2008 at 24:00(PDT)

IMPORTANT: Please note that your voucher code will only be valid up until 05/06/2008, so please make sure to register them by then.
Quite where this leaves UK and Europe-based players is unsure, since Konami only mention the US. It would also appear from other reports that Japan is unaffected and is going ahead with the beta as planned, so Konami seem to have delayed the rest of the world whilst they upgrade their servers.

I wonder if somewhere in a Japanese boardroom an executive is looking at a capital expenditure request for a bunch of new servers and is pondering whether they should have used the PSN ID like everyone else!

[UPDATE] The Konami ID servers finally let us create the various IDs we need to get involved. In trying to launch the game, it simply sends an error message stating it cannot conect to a server. It would appear that Europe has been switched off too for now.

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Friday, 18 April 2008

Konami ID site still broken, but MGO does update

If you've been following the mess that has been created by Konami surrounding the release of the Metal Gear Online beta programme, you'll know all about the various IDs you have to create before you can play the game.

The beta itself became available on the 17th to people that pre-ordered MGS4 around the world or, if you are lucky enough to be in the UK/Europe, on the PS Store as a free download.

There are two things you'll notice when you download the beta:

  1. It requires both a Konami ID and a GAME ID to be able to play. The two IDs cannot be the same, so you can't just use your PSN ID for both of them.
  2. The beta has a v1.01 download available for it already.

So far, due to the massive weight of traffic heading to the Konami ID site, it has been almost impossible to set up the two IDs necessary to play the game. There was a glimmer of hope that you could complete all the forms needed to gain your IDs for a few minutes today, but it broke again soon after without actually ever finishing the process.

The v1.01 download, however, does work as long as you choose peer-to-peer mode. Peer-to-peer operates in the same way as a BitTorrent, sharing the update file between users rather than everyone hammering the server. Choose this option if you actually want to get the update, as the HTML option just doesn't work at all right now.

Our advice to you is simple; grab the v1.01 update via the peer-to-peer option, wait until the 19th or 20th to register your Konami IDs at the site. And use a PC rather than the PS3 browser if you can. If you have to use the PS3 browser to get your IDs, use a keyboard if you have one.

Our advice to Konami is simple; use the PSN ID next time and avoid all this nonsense.

Quite how these unique IDs will play out when MGS4 launches is unclear, and it is certainly going to make Home integration for MGO an interesting topic - imagine meeting someone and noting their PSN ID, launching into an MGO game, and then not being able to find them because their name is different.

Seriously Konami - fix this as the number one bug in your beta!

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Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Firmware 2.30 arrives, along with a PS Store update

Sony sure do know how to make us happy right now.

Not only does firmware 2.30 hit the network before most people have woken up, but the nice new PlayStation Store has a few updates included in it as well.

The first thing you notice is just how fast the new store loads in comparison to the old one. And the zoom 'n' fade between windows is much better in real life than it showed up on the walkthrough video.

In terms of new content, there is an awesome update for Super Stardust HD that adds four new game modes and a retro soundtrack, amongst other things.

We have some new Guitar Hero III content from the band Dropkick Murphys and then there's the Sega Superstars Demo we were expecting to hit on Thursday.

Finally, we get a Bionic Commando Rearmed trailer and a second Lost Planet trailer.

This is good, but it's going to get better this week with the arrival of Metal Gear Online and the next Warhawk expansion - Operation Broken Mirror.

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Friday, 11 April 2008

Metal Gear Online beta coming next week

Metal Gear Online has been offered as a beta for people that pre-order in the US and Japan, and we've been wondering what will happen to a European beta.Konami said earlier in the week that the beta was definitely coming to Europe, but still we had no details of how to get access.

Now, SCEE have confirmed that a completely open beta program will start next Thursday (17th) as part of the new store's first update. Yes - you'll be able to play MGO next week and you don't even have to pre-order MGS4.

In addition to the MGO beta, Europe will also get a Lair update that allows you to control the game using the analogue sticks, some new dragons for Lair, a Sega Superstar Tennis demo (same one that hit the US a few weeks back) and - importantly - Warhawk's Operation Broken Mirror map and APV pack.

There will also be a smattering of videos, including the latest GTA: IV trailer.

If this is how European updates are going to look in the future, we all have nothing to worry about!

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Tuesday, 18 March 2008

GameFlirt Most Wanted chart for March

Exclusive to PS3 Attitude, we bring you the monthly 'most wanted' PS3 charts at GameFlirt

GameFlirt are one of the UK's top games rental companies, and you won't find this information anywhere else - not even at the GameFlirt website.

Like the often seen Netflix charts for US movie titles, it's a great indicator of what's hot in the PS3 community.

This month sees the biggest shift of the year so far. Call of Duty 4 has dropped out of the chart altogether. It would seem that our favourite game of the moment is so impressive, people have stopped renting it and have bought their own copy instead. That means for a second month running, Assassin's Creed takes the number one slot.

In fact, Assassin's Creed is the only title to make it on to this month's chart. Other new entries include Devil May Cry, Ridge Racer 7, Oblivion and Army of Two. Everything there makes sense to us except for Ridge Racer 7 arriving in third place! We reckon all the people who picked up a PS3 over Christmas have just found out about game rentals and are trying some old school racing...

Metal Gear Solid 4 remains the number one pre-rent title, of course! Devil May Cry 4, UT III and Blacksite has moved out of the pre-rent chart since their release, so Haze is joined by Monster Madness and Mercenaries 2. The difference this month is the pre-rent list is a top four instead of a top five, as March is always one of those transition months on the gaming calendar whilst new titles get ramped up for the Easter break.

Here are the charts in full.


Top 5 current rentals year-to-date:

1 - Assassin's Creed
2 - Devil May Cry 4
3 - Ridge Racer 7
4 - Oblivion
5 - Army of Two



Top 4 pre-ordered games for February:

1 - Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
2 - Haze
3 - Monster Madness
4 - Mercenaries 2



Many thanks to GameFlirt for providing the data.

Click any of the links to visit GameFlirt for more details and to rent or pre-rent the titles. As a thank you to our readers anyone who signs up for the GameFlirt service via these links will receive 10 days free rental.

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Monday, 3 March 2008

In-game XMB confirmed and Home rumoured for Summer; the secret of firmware 2.4

In a recent interview with MCV, Ray Maquire of SCE UK was congratulating UK retailers on helping them sell 1m PS3 units faster than the PS2 did.

During the short interview however, he said:

“Our momentum will continue with the introduction of in-game communication in the summer, firmware update 2.4 and the strongest line-up of games through our third party partners and our own studios. I’d personally like to thank our trade and business partners for helping us on the start of the PS3 journey.”
So the question is, why would Mr. Maguire make a special point of firmware v2.4? Surely this update will be an important one. He already said in-game XMB will come along, maybe to co-incide with the Summer release of Metal Gear Solid 4.

So will firmware 2.4 include a new, sparkly Home icon? It must be something important, or he wouldn't have mentioned it as a separate possible milestone in the yet-to-be-told story of the PS3 throughout 2008.

What do you think is included in firmware v2.4?

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Wednesday, 27 February 2008

PS3 announcements-a-plenty, but it's not all good news

Wow. Yesterday was a day for announcements and release dates, wasn't it?!

We announced a rumour that MGS4 finally got a worldwide release date, which has since been confirmed. Hideo Kojima's latest (and last in the series) is being launched on 12th June.

From the same retail conference, we also got word of a US release date for an MGS4 PS3 bundle, the DualShock 3 (April) and the sweet-looking God of War PSP Entertainment Pack (March 4th).

We got word from Ubisoft that Haze is being released in May.

We heard from Sega that the game formerly known as 'Valkyria of the Battlefield: Gallian Chronicles' in Japan will be coming to Europe - exclusively on the PS3 - and will be called 'Valkyria Chronicles'. It will arrive this Autumn.

So what's the bad news?

Looks like the MGS4 bundle and the beautiful GoW PSP are staying US-bound only. SCEE have said there are no plans to bring either to Europe. This - in my opinion - is a mistake on many levels.

By continually launching hardware and software in different forms and guises in different territories, Sony continue the public perception that SCEE, SCEA and SCEJ just don't talk to each other or work as a single unit.

The DualShock 3 has been available in Japan for some time - why wasn't it available everywhere all at once?

Not to mention it was months before us Brits and the rest of Europe got to see the PS3 in the flesh.

And don't get me started on the huge amount of region-free games that have been released elsewhere on the PlayStation Store, but not in Europe.

If Sony want to ride the wave of momentum they have gained from the actual success of the PS3 since launch (reaching 1m units in the UK faster than the PS2, reaching 10m units worldwide faster than the X360 did, the death of HD-DVD) then they need to get rid of the negative things that counteract that success.

So come on Sony - bring the MGS4 packs and the GoW PSP to Europe and show us all that you are a global coordinated organisation, not a group of silo operations.

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Tuesday, 26 February 2008

Metal Gear Solid 4 coming on June 12th?

At Destination PlayStation - a retail-only conference - the news is that MGS4 will arrive on June 12th this year.

June 12th is a Thursday but MGS4 wouldn't be the only title launched on that day of the week this year. Rainbox Six Vegas 2 arrives on a Thursday, and GTA IV has the audacity to join retail shelves on a Tuesday!

Word is that there will beware bundles launched on the same day too, but we're not sure if that is worldwide or just in certain territories.

We're waiting on proper confirmation from Konami, but this sounds like the real deal to us.

The PS3 Attitude Calendar has been updated accordingly...

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Tuesday, 5 February 2008

GameFlirt Most Wanted chart for February

Exclusive to PS3 Attitude, we'll be bringing you the 'most wanted' PS3 charts at GameFlirt

GameFlirt are one of the UK's top games rental companies, and you won't find this information anywhere else - not even at the GameFlirt website.


Like the often seen Netflix charts for US movie titles, it's a great indicator of what's hot in the PS3 community.

This month sees a shift in the year-to-date rentals, with Call of Duty 4 dropping two places. Our guess would be that more people have decided to buy that particular title rather than rent it. That means Assassin's Creed takes the number one slot.

Metal Gear Solid 4 remains the number one pre-rent title with Devil May Cry 4 and Haze holding their positions. Blacksite is a new entry and sneeks into the number four slot.

Top 5 current rentals year-to-date:

1 - Assassin's Creed
2 - Rainbow Six Vegas
3 - Call of Duty 4
4 - Fight Night Round 3
5 - Virtua Tennis


Top 5 pre-ordered games for February:

1 - Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
2 - Devil May Cry 4
3 - Haze

Like last month it is interesting to see Haze above Unreal Tournament III, but Blacksite as well? It would seem that UT III is more likely to be bought by the masses, whereas maybe the jury is still out on Haze and Blacksite - they're more likely to be rented. We might agree regarding Blacksite, but Haze is certainly good enough to gain our £50 when it launches.

Many thanks to GameFlirt for providing the data - look out for next month's chart as we start rolling into a steadier stream of PS3 releases.

Click any of the links to visit GameFlirt for more details. As a thank you to our readers anyone who signs up for the GameFlirt service via these links will receive 10 days free rental.

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Tuesday, 22 January 2008

MGS4 demo definitely on the way in February

As is usual at PS3 Attitude, we resisted the temptation to report this when it was still firmly resident in the 'rumour cup'.

We now know for sure that a small piece of Metal Gear Solid 4 will be coming to a PlayStation Store near you next month.

The demo that everyone has been waiting for is set to arrive in February and will be the same code that PCW magazine played to create their recent article.

So with yet another shoddy reference to our 2008 opening story, the Year of the Rat may start in February, but it looks like it is going to be the Month of the Snake.

Keep checking the PS3 Attitude PlayStation 3 Events Calendar, which will show the actual date of release as soon as it is made available.

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Friday, 11 January 2008

GameFlirt Most Wanted Chart for January

Exclusive to PS3 Attitude, we'll be bringing you the 'most wanted' PS3 charts at GameFlirt

GameFlirt are one of the UK's top games rental companies, and you won't find this information anywhere else.

Like the often seen Netflix charts for US movie titles, it's a great indicator of what's hot in the PS3 community.

Top 4 current rentals year-to-date:

1 - Call of Duty 4
2 - Assassin's Creed
3 - Rainbow Six Vegas
4 - Virtua Tennis


It's no great surprise to see MGS4 and DMC4 at the top of the pre-order chart, but it sure is interesting to see Haze above Unreal Tournament III. Is this because the game is already released in the US and we already know so much about it? Maybe the promise of something new and slightly mysterious is stronger than the pull from a game we already know, warts and all...

Many thanks to GameFlirt for providing the data - look out for next month's chart as we start rolling into a steadier stream of PS3 releases.

Click any of the links to visit GameFlirt for more details.

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Friday, 4 January 2008

In the Year of the Rat, will Sony win the race?



It will soon be the Year of the Rat.

In Chinese astrology the Rat is considered a leader and a pioneer. Rats can also be controlling, having their own way whatever the cost. Although Sony were 'born' in 1946 (which makes them a Dog - incidentally the same sign as my good self), you might say there are certain attributes of the Rat that sit well with them.

If you think it is odd to mix Chinese astrology with a Japanese company then bear with us. Although the Japanese celebrate the new year on the 1st January, they send postcards to their family and friends with the relevant animal depicted on the front - harking back to when the lunar calendar and the 12 animal signs were in use throughout Japan.

So what will this year bring, and will Sony win the ratrace against their most fierce of rivals? Just how will the Dog fair against the Rabbit (Microsoft) and the Ox (Nintendo).

Burnout Paradise is our first indication that 2008 is going to be a good one for the PS3. Yes - I know... since it is being released in January it doesn't fall into the Chinese 'lunar year' which starts in February. But since the Japanese start their year in January too, we're going to run with this one!

Then it's the turn of Devil May Cry 4 to hit our screens. There was a time when I was particularly angry with the Sheep (otherwise known as Capcom) for taking DMC to other platforms. But now we've seen it looking particularly spectacular on the PS3 we're not so unhappy. Add to that some exclusive downloadable content and the grass is certainly looking greener on this side of the fence. Maybe we'll hold off on turning Capcom into lamb chops for now.

Haze can't be ignored. Although it is yet another FPS, it is a special one. I don't honestly think that it is going to compare in any way to the Rabbit's best effort (the ever present Halo franchise) but it is truly a much deeper and more involving experience than many of the existing 'shooter' offerings available on the PS3. Call of Duty 4 excepted.

Shortly after you've managed to figure out how to squeeze those three titles into your heavy social calendar, the Tiger of Rockstar will rip your diary apart with the launch of GTA: IV. Once again it is a title that will appear on the Rabbit's platform, but we're not bitter about it. I couldn't care less if it were on every platform - just as long is it rocks our world as much as we think it will!

Around this time in the Year of the Rat, we expect that two amazing innovations will have found their way on to our favourite black monolith. PlayStation Home and LittleBigPlanet.

Home promises to be more than just a 3D lobby, although admittedly the ability to launch you and your newly-made friends into the multiplayer part of any game you own is a great feature. With huge amounts of content promised for launch and throughout the life of Home, plus the 'social networking' abilities available via the web-based portal to your Home space, Home will become many things; a replacement for the XMB, a lobby, a content viewer (both yours and content from Sony and third-parties), a casual games arena, a social networking site, a marketing tool to reach non-PS3 owners, a vanity case of game achievements, a mobile blogging/photo centre and much more.

LittleBigPlanet is surely one of the most anticipated titles of the year with it's innovative mix of gameplay, creation and sharing. If there's one title that is destined to take on the marketing behemoth that is Halo 3, this is it. 'What?', I hear you cry. How can you compare LBP and Halo 3? Think about it.

There's Halo 3 characters, faceplates, headsets, controllers and skins everywhere you look on your favourite retailer's shelves. You can get ringtones, wallpapers and themes for almost any mobile device. If there is one thing I want to see this year it's a Sackboy that I can actually buy, along with fabric pens so I can modify him, just like in the game. And a Sackboy controller. And a Sackboy gift set. Sony should be marketing the crap out of this game. I want to see Sackboy on the shelves of Clinton Cards alongside that ever-present blue-nosed teddy bear. You get the idea.

As the year progresses, we'll be hit with another massive title that is definitely staying on the PS3 only. Metal Gear Solid 4 will arrive. Every indication is that this final chapter in the story of Snake will be monumental in every way. The recent previews we've seen show the game to be something really special and the ending is promising to be as epic as you would expect. Once again you're going to have to figure out how to balance still playing GTA and LBP when this one hits. Who said gaming was easy!

Although Europe will see GT5 Prologue early in the year (February we reckon), there's a good chance the full Gran Turismo 5 experience will hit our shelves in the Year of the Rat. Promising a huge amount of detail, cars, tracks and content, along with realistic damage (hooray!), real-time weather simulation, GT-TV content, My Garage homepages/social networking and - most importantly - the Top Gear Test Track, GT5 will give us petrol-heads something to really get our teeth into once we've completed everything Burnout Paradise can offer.

Finally, we'll be sinking our teeth into the Hellghast scum once again as Killzone 2 comes to the PS3. Whether or not the screenshots you have seen are 'doctored' or not, it doesn't really matter. The fact is that this game is one hell of an FPS. Incredible graphics, amazing character animation, deep storyline, real atmosphere and pixel-perfect shooting mean that this one title may just blow your mind as well as your wallet. Another PS3 exclusive, I predict Killzone 2 will be the biggest selling of them all, which is a risky bet given the massive appeal of the games we've detailed above.

Honourable mentions go to the other games that will hit this year in retail and PS Store form; Tekken 6, SOCOM: Confrontation, Madden 09, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, Everyday Shooter and Wipeout HD to name but a few. And we've ignored the possible release of those other exclusives - Final Fantasy XIII and Final Fantasy Versus XIII - because we just don't believe they'll make it onto shelves this year.

And don't forget the additional hardware and PSP interactivity that is due. Soon you'll be able to buy PlayTV in Europe and add a twin-tuner Freeview PVR to the list of incredible things you can do with a PS3, and view live TV or your recorded programmes via Remote Play. There's so much more to come from the PS3 this year and much of it will be delivered, free of charge, via firmware updates and the PS Store.

Simply put, the Year of the Rat will be the best one yet for Sony. The Dog can learn new tricks, it seems.

Check out the gallery below for various screenshots and wallpapers...

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Thursday, 25 October 2007

European PS Store updates for 25th October



What can I say? We have ourselves a bone fide massive EU Store update on our hands people! It's like a revelation.

Of course, much of it has been sparked off by the launch of the PlayStation Eye - and I'm not complaining in the slightest. I get my Eye of Judgement pack tomorrow so I spent a tenner on three Eye compatible titles plus the Folklore expansion. I mean really - ten pounds for three full titles and some extra folks. Value for money or what?!

Here's the full burgeoning list of updates available at the Store, which for some of the time today was clearly buckling under the pressure as it was unavailable for a couple of hours...

  • Pixel Junk Racers - game (£4.99)
  • Aqua Vita - PS Eye game (£1.99)
  • Operation Creature Feature - PS Eye game (£3.49)
  • Trials of Topoq - PS Eye game (£3.49)
  • Eye Create - PS Eye application (free)
  • Tony Hawk's Proving Grounds - demo (free)
  • Ratchet and Clank - demo (free)
  • "The Kidnapped Folk" - Folklore add-on (£1.49)
  • "Halloween Livery" - Motorstorm add-on (free; and a nice touch too)
  • "Rachel Master" - Ninja Gaiden Sigma add-on (£2.99)
  • Tekken 5: DR Online mode - trailer (free)
  • Eye of Judgment Introduction - trailer (free)
  • Toy Home - trailer (free)
  • Midnight Club LA - trailer (free)
  • Metal Gear Online TGS - trailer (free)
  • Courage Under Fire - Blu-Ray movie trailer (free)
  • Beowulf - movie trailer (free)
  • Stardust - movie trailer (free)

Keep this up SCEE and we'll forget all about the past. Like it never happened... deal?

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Friday, 28 September 2007

MGS 4 website gets a facelift

Seems to be a day for new PS3 websites.

The official Metal Gear Solid 4 website has had a particularly nice facelift, and contains a message from Kojima-san, details on many of the characters in the game and all the trailers - including the recent TGS 07 video.

As an aside, there are some rumours being bandied around the 'net today that Microsoft are preparing a major bid to get MGS and FF XIII on the X360. Whether they're true or just the usual tripe, I'm not sure. We'll keep an eye on things and will update you as soon as we find out.

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Tuesday, 18 September 2007

TGS 07 nearly here; Top 10 most anticipated games

Gametrailers.com have created a montage of the Top 10 most anticipated games at the Tokyo Games Show this year.

Included in the Top 10 for the PS3 are:

Devil May Cry 4
Last Remnant
Soul Calibur IV
White Knight Story (PS3 Exclusive)
Final Fantasy XIII (PS3 Exclusive)
Metal Gear Solid 4 (PS3 Exclusive)
Resident Evil 5

So, 70% of the Top 10 according to Gametrailers are on the PS3, and 30% of them are exclusives. Not bad, wouldn't you say?!

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Sunday, 26 August 2007

Leipzig GC 07: PS3 video roundup

Thanks to Gamespot UK, here's a bunch of videos that will bring you up-to-speed on what has been going on in the world of the PS3 at Leipzig...

1. Killzone 2 - 25 minutes of developer walkthrough



2. LittleBigPlanet - 5 and a half minutes of gameplay



3. Metal Gear Solid 4 - the new trailer shown by Kojima-san in Leipzig, albeit a day late due to technical difficulties the first time around!



For more of the same, visit Gamespot UK's PS3 GC07 video section

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Wednesday, 25 July 2007

Here it is finally - MGS4 gameplay footage

Here's the footage of MGS4 being played by Hideo Kojima at the recent MGS 20th Anniversary party.

We were hoping to have had this video last week when Kojima-san originally performed the demonstration, but it's good to have it now.

Enjoy!

Video requires Windows Media Player or similar that will understand how to play ASX files.

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Sunday, 22 July 2007

PS3 features well in Famitsu's Most Wanted


Whilst Dragon Quest IX for the DS holds on to the top spot, and with Halo 3 re-entering the top 20 most wanted titles at Famitsu (position 19 in fact) , the PS3 has 8 of the 20 titles Japanese consumers want most.

In the top 5, four of them are PS3 franchises. FF XIII leads the way followed by Biohazard 5 (or Resident Evil 5 as we know it), Monster Hunter 3 and MGS 4.

The full list is available from Total Gamer Zone.

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Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Alas, no MGS4 demo video


Looks like security was tighter than a gnat's arse at the PlayStation Premier event.

So here's a picture you can look at from Sabra magazine's coverage of MGS3 Subsistence instead.

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Tuesday, 17 July 2007

News from the PlayStation Premier event in Tokyo

As we heard from Kojima-san at last week's E3 keynote, he is showing a real demo of MGS4 in Tokyo today.

While we wait for any video footage we can get our hands on let's wrap up the rest of the news from today's PlayStation Premier press event.

First up, we found out after the demo that a new Metal Gear Solid title is coming our way! Kojima-san announced they are producing a PS3 version of the online game that was included in MGS3 Subsistence. It looks like they will show this at the MGS 20th Anniversary Party next week in Tokyo.

Tekken 6 is announced as a full online title. We know that we are going to get an updated Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection title on the PS Store soon that will provide online battles, so this isn't a great shock.

News from the floor is that Final Fantasy XIII is only 13% complete at this time! But that's ok, since Final Fantasy Versus XIII is supposedly less than 2% complete, so in comparison they're storming ahead.

Grand Turismo 5 Prologue, as announced at E3, is supposed to be arriving in October.

White Knight Story will be playable at this year's Tokyo Game Show which is being held in September.

And my favourite news of the day - LocoRoco for the PS3 is on the way. Slated for release via the PS Store in the near future (it is 95% complete) the tentatively titled "Buu Buu Cocoreccho! by LocoRoco" will feature over 200 LocoRoco characters and full use of the SixAxis as its control mechanism.

Check back soon for the MGS4 demo video assuming I can get my grubby mitts on it!

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Saturday, 14 July 2007

E3 2007: 60 fps; now that's a 'quick draw'!


1875. In a small town called Santa Monica the Rapp Saloon saw it's fair share of Wild West action.

132 years later the 'big guns' of the gaming industry took their fight to town. Or so you would think based on all the 'Sony won E3', 'MS won E3' and 'Nintendo won E3' threads that pepper the 'net today.

E3 2007 is now over. And just to make things clear, I've seen all three major keynote speeches (before anyone says I can't be objective!).

I'll be honest, there's only one clear winner - us. Regardless of whether you're a 'fanboy' or someone who buys every console, or even someone just in-between, there's something for everyone.

I already covered the Sony keynote in detail and followed up with my thoughts on why Sony did a fantastic job. I think MS spent too much time talking 'figures', which is what they do best anyway, but we all need to remember they had a year of selling over PS3 and Wii so it's no great surprise they've outsold everyone to date. Nintendo had some fun stuff but personally I still see the Wii as more of a last-gen toy than a next-gen gaming or entertainment centre.

Here's a complete wrap-up of my thoughts about Sony's E3 and what it means for everyone who owns a PS3.

First of all, we need more games for our beloved black monolith. And Sony came with new games. Over the next 'financial year' we're going to see literally hundreds of releases on both Blu-ray disk and via the Playstation Store (that's before March 2008).

PS Store downloads will include the likes of Warhawk (also available on BD), Socom, Wipeout HD and Pain. The new puzzler Echochrome will have user-generated content (but no-one can say what or how yet). We know that via the Store you'll get more and more additional content for your existing games, extending their life and adding new features. We've already had additional game modes for Motorstorm but look out for new tracks and extra levels over the next month or so.

New games coming along this Summer, Autumn and Winter include Heavenly Sword, Assassin's Creed, Haze, Guitar Hero III, Rock Band, Killzone 2, Lair, Eye of Judgement, Skate, GTA: IV and Unreal Tournament III to name just a few. 100s of titles before March next year, 15 of them exclusive to the platform.

Secondly, we needed to see improvements to the Playstation network experience. When I first saw Home at GDC I was blown away. But I wasn't prepared for the vast improvements already when Phil Harrison took the stage at E3 2007.

Now, not only do we get the single best 'network' experience available on any platform, we get to interact with it via our PCs and mobile phones. Thanks goodness I only buy Sony Ericsson phones! And we get to launch games from BD or our hard drives directly from within Home with our friends around the world. The entire Home exprience looks so compelling, and it's still free. No monthly subscriptions for us PS3 owners...

When they do launch video-on-demand for the PS3 and PSP, we'll have everything covered.

Finally, we wanted to see that the pre-rendered 'target renders' we saw at E3 2006 were actually achievable.

And we did. Oh boy, we did.

Killzone 2 looks just incredible. I wasn't a huge fan of the original Killzone - it never really grabbed me. Killzone Liberation on the PSP has been one of the outstanding titles for our mobile brother and that has kept me interested in the Killzone brand since the original PS2 game. Now it looks like the PS3 has yet another stand-out title that will shift units worldwide, and I can't wait to waste some Helghast scum!

And Metal Gear Solid 4? The latest trailer showed that the PS3 is capable of producing, in realtime, the kind of cinematic content that ensure you really feel part of the action. I'll be looking out for that demonstration in Tokyo next week...

There were issues at E3, of course. Assassin's Creed didn't look like it was close to finished by all reports - too many glitches. Some people say that's because they felt pressured to get the demo up regardless, but the issues did create a little extra pressure for the PR machine.

And then there's the whole $100 price drop/60Gb phase out thing. It's all over the 'net as you'd expect and Sony's execs seemed to be tripping up over each other to state and counter-state differing points of view.

But here's the deal. Personally, I could care less about the 80Gb model. I already have a PS3. I can upgrade the hard drive in my PS3 to 160Gb tomorrow for £50 and it will take me 5 minutes. Anyone who is buying a new PS3 may as well have the new one with the larger hard drive, but it they want to buy the smaller one and add in a new hard drive, they can.

That's because Sony made the hard drive a standard SATA unit so it's easy to upgrade. Try doing that in any other console right now.

And the 80Gb version isn't coming to Europe/UK anyway right now. Hate to be all UK-biased, but that means I really couldn't care less about the new SKU!!

There you have it. A brilliant E3 for all of us whether you own a PS3 or any of the other units. I believe that Sony really did bring everything we needed to see from them and more. Don't expect to see a Wild West undertaker coming out of his store to measure Sony up for a box any time soon...

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Wednesday, 11 July 2007

E3 Day 2 Extra: Liveblogging the Sony Keynote Speech

Because sleep is for wimps:

Jack Tretton is on stage. After a couple of PSP announcements Phil Harrison takes the stage.

He shows 'Echochrome' for the PlayStation Store which has the 'least graphics but the most gameplay'. It seems to be a puzzler based on the mind-bending drawings of M.C. Escher. Certainly has the least graphics - it's all black and white line art...

He announces both a 1080p 60 fps version of Wipeout called Wipeout HD with full online multiplayer - Pain (the Jackass-inspired game that's already been covered elsewhere) - Warhawk - and Socom Confrontation, the first next-gen Socom title. All of these titles are for the PlayStation Store. Warhawk and Socom will be available on Blu-ray disk also.

Phil talks about the new additions to Home. He shows Home running on his Sony Ericcson mobile phone!! It doesn't allow 3D but it does allow you to connect to Home to get messages etc. and has a mini-XMB interface. He takes a picture with the phone and puts it in his pocket.

Phil goes on to show a vast array of Home spaces for purchase to show the variety of new properties that will be available. He shows a Singstar video playing on a virtual TV in his virtual house which leads to a video about Singstar on the PS3 and it's downloadable content and PS Eye compatibility. Look at that! The picture he took is in a picture frame on the wall! Home Mobile uploads automatically to your Home space.

He also shows the PC element of Home where it is a full social networking experience linked to the PlayStation Home network. This is almost too much!

Is there any more? Yes - you can also launch any game from BD disk or your HD directly inside Home! He launches Motorstorm which goes straight into a multiplayer game on a NEW track called Eagles Nest that will be available for download next month... It will go straight back to Home wherever you left off when you quit the game. Stunning.

Phil leaves the stage and we go back to the announcement on the 80Gb model of the PS3 at $599 in North America and the $100 price drop on the current version. Sony announce that the PS3 has helped Blu-ray reach a 2:1 sales ratio against HD-DVD.

NC Soft is announced as a new Sony developer! NC Soft is the famous MMO developer and they will be developing MMO titles exclusively for PS3 - excellent announcement.

As expected Haze is announced as a timed exclusive on PS3. Words were chosen very carefully - "if you want to play it this Summer you'll only be able to do that on PS3" - which means it will go to other platforms but not until Autumn/Winter at least. Ensuing Haze video shows features such as vehicle control, gun control on helicopters and the ability to 'play dead' to catch out enemies.

A multi-stage deal with Epic and Midway is announced that allows for a fully optimised version of the Unreal Engine for the PS3. 100 games are in the works for this engine and Unreal Tournament 3 is confirmed as a PS3 exclusive this year! User created mods from the PC version can be brought over to the PS3 version. UTIII is released this November in the US and the video Sony shows looks absolutely stunning.

Sony show other titles that are coming this year. They include Call of Duty 4, Assassin's Creed, Kane & Lynch: Dead Men, Resident Evil 5, Burnout Paradise, Madden NFL '08, Harry Potter & The Order of the Phoenix, The Simpsons Game, Guitar Hero III: Legend of Rock, Medal of Honour: Airborne and Rock Band (see, it IS coming for PS3).

One more exclusive is announced. It is available only on PS3. It's Metal Gear Solid 4. Hideo Kojima takes the stage. He says "I safely made it to E3 again! MGS is celebrating it's 20-year anniversary this year. I've been creating this franchise for 20 years but MGS4 will be the FINAL in the series. The story of Snake will end in this game and this will be my last game in the series. So all the story plots and mysteries will be revealed. The game itself will be a stealth game but with new elements in the battlefield. Stealth in the battlefield. I promise you I'm putting all my skills and experience of the last 20 years into MGS4. Today I brought with me the newest trailer. It's not a movie, it is real-time footage from the PS3 so welcome to the premiere".

The trailer is completely outstanding in every way. You'll be able to download it via the US PS Store today. Afterwards Kojima-san asks "How was it!" and gets a big round of applause. He assures everyone that what they saw was real-time footage and you will be able to play in that quality. He says that next week at a show in Tokyo he will show a real demo of the gameplay!

Phil Harrison re-takes the stage. He's back in the Home theatre to show some more exclusives. Ratchet and Clank Future: Tools of Destruction is the first up. It is said that the level of detail and sophistication is only achievable on the PS3. Next up is Folklore. Folklore looks incredible and seems to have a real mix of action, RPG, beautiful graphics and a 'dark' storyline. Heavenly Sword now features. There's been so much news about this game I need to add nothing extra!

NBA '08 is announced next and looks incredible in 1080p 60 fps with realtime roster updates direct from the real NBA. If a player gets an injury in real life, he gets an injury in your game! One of my personal favourites, LittleBigPlanet, is next. Sony show a video of the 'create' part of the game, with the concentration on the game evolving naturally as players create new levels and share them with the entire PSN. The final game Phil wants to show us from his virtual self in Home is Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. Once again we're treated to an awesome video where the lead character has over 3,000 animations alone all seamlessly linking to provide realistic movement, emotion and characterisation.

Next up from the real Phil is Infamous, another exclusive from Sucker Punch. A teaser trailer is shown that gives you a sneak preview of an 'anti-hero' game where you have to decide whether your superpowers save or destroy the world.

GT5 Prologue is announced with full online multiplayer as a stopgap whilst we wait for the full GT5 experience. It looks outstanding and should appease the masses who are always complaining about the delays in the current stock of GT titles.

One more announcement from Phil. A video starts and it's Killzone 2. Everything we are about to see is realtime. They show a video similar to the one I featured earlier in the Day 2 round-up, so go experience it for yourself now. This video shows much more real gameplay and the game looks completely amazing. Imagine everything you wanted Resistance to be and more...

The press are invited to play many of the games in the room next door which of course I can't do because I'm stuck here in the UK watching this all on a live feed. That's it. It's all over. Frankly, it's a great keynote from Sony with lots of brilliant announcements and I can't wait to see what the real writers make of the advancements in Home and the batch of exclusives Sony announced. Goodnight all..

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E3 Day 2: Sony Skate and Rock an Assassin's Soul in his Killzone

Another day, another E3 PS3 round-up...

Killzone 2 - HD video (the one we've all been waiting for!), developer interview
Rock Band - HD video (not the same gameplay video that Viacom keep pulling from YouTube)
Assassin's Creed - HD video
Soul Calibre IV - video
Skate - video

If you have a US PSN account, you should be able to get the latest MGS4 trailer direct via the PlayStation Store by now - enjoy!

It's Sony's keynote today at 11:30 PST (19:30 UK) so look out for a round-up of the big event tomorrow.

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Tuesday, 10 July 2007

E3 Day 1: Destroy All Mirror Patriots III

So E3 has begun. A new leaner, meaner E3.

I'll come clean. It's not so easy covering E3 from the UK due to the 8-hour delay. There comes a point where I do actually have to sleep!

So each day I'll be bringing you a summary of the top PS3 stories followed by a more substantial wrap up once the dust has settled...

See you tomorrow for more...

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