It has been a while since I last wrote on the blog. I’ve been looking to take the opportunity to talk about PLAYSTATION Network and thought today’s availability of the redesigned PLAYSTATION Store would be the perfect entry point to outline what we have planned for the broader PLAYSTATION Network this year.
First off, we’re excited about the new look and feel of the PLAYSTATION Store. Personally, I’ve been looking forward to this update for a long time as, in my view, the previous PLAYSTATION Store experience wasn’t one that lived up to our brand. But this new UI is much more dynamic and allows us to elegantly display and merchandise a lot more content, which is very important today, but will be critical going forward with so much great new content coming onto the Store. We look forward to hearing your input and reaction now that you’ve gotten your hands on it.
2008 is being called “the year of PlayStation 3” by a lot of press and analysts these days, and for good reason — there’s lots of momentum behind PS3 and we have a ton of great new exclusive games coming. This week’s launch of GT5 Prologue is one great example, and gamers are already in countdown mode for Metal Gear Solid 4, Little Big Planet, SOCOM, Resistance 2, and on and on. But another big reason 2008 will be a great year for PS3 fans is due to the big things we have in store this year for the PLAYSTATION Network. The PLAYSTATION Store redesign is the first step but it’s only one example. Our primary goal with PLAYSTATION Network is to form an evolving entertainment network where the PlayStation community can gather and discover new forms of entertainment. Some of the key pillars that will make this an experience a success are:
- The PlayStation community;
- Free online gaming;
- Digital media download services; and
- Original content
Of course, entertainment comes in the form of content, so I’ll dive in and discuss what we are bringing to PLAYSTATION Network that will help us achieve this goal.
One of the most critical elements to PLAYSTATION Network that we’ve focused on since day one is delivering quality games. We’ve always stressed quality over quantity (in other words, fewer arcade remakes and more original content) as well as games that show off PS3’s tech, and games like Everyday Shooter, Super Stardust HD and PixelJunk Monsters are proving that you can get a great experience for $10, or roughly the cost of a movie ticket. What’s equally exciting is what we have planned for you this year..of course one of those titles is available starting today- the world’s best-selling racing franchise, Gran Turismo 5 Prologue. We also have coming this May the wildly imaginative puzzle-game echochrome, which frankly is a game I’ve been playing most lately. It’s as good as it looks in all the press you’ve been reading and is extremely addictive. We will also be bringing hugely popular franchises to PLAYSTATION Network for the first time, including SOCOM Confrontation and WipEout HD, as well as continue to deliver innovative indie games like flOwer, from the developers of flOw. So in short, content is what’s driving you, and we hear you loud and clear, and are delivering that quality that you want and deserve.
The strong lineup of games doesn’t stop there. Many of you have been hearing rumblings about a video service that will allow you to download full-length TV shows and movies via PLAYSTATION Network for North America. While I don’t have any new announcements here for the PlayStation Nation, it’s already been confirmed that we’ll be offering a video service for PS3 in a way that separates the service from others you’ve seen or used. Ultimately the goal of the PLAYSTATION Network service will be to break through the overwhelming clutter of digital media to give you the TV, movies and gaming content you want. More on this very soon …
Community-related services available via PlayStation Network have also been a big focus for enhancements here in 2008. We know you want in-game access to XMB features and we’re committed to bringing that, among other community-related services this year. They will be designed to allow more community development and collaborative gameplay, as well as recognize and reward you for your gameplay accomplishments across a broad portfolio of PS3 games. Of course, 2008 will also see the launch of PlayStation Home, and we’ll have more announcements on the expanding community functions within PLAYSTATION Network in the near future, so stay tuned.
Lastly, we feel your overall experience on PLAYSTATION Network should be rewarding. We hope the redesigned PLAYSTATION Store is a step in the right direction and delivers on your feedback, which is vital to some of the short and long term changes you’ll be seeing with PLAYSTATION Network. We understood from your comments on this very blog that you wanted the PLAYSTATION Store to have a more dynamic look and improved navigation. We want the PlayStation community to enjoy their experiences on PLAYSTATION Network and the online storefront is a key part of that experience.
And to wrap up with one of the many topics I know you ask about regularly, we are rolling out the PlayStation Cards to retailers nationwide as we speak. They will have the PlayStation Cards in denominations of $20 and $50 starting this spring. This will provide you with another option to get on board with the PLAYSTATION Store and enjoy the content that I’ve outlined above.
As you can tell, we’re extremely excited for what’s planned for PLAYSTATION Network. We believe the library of original and quality games and entertainment, combined with community services and continued enhancements to the overall experience, will deliver on our promise of an integrated content and community experiences. We look forward to sharing more updates with you in the near future.
Thanks and have fun!