Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Monthly Hate - Sony's Fall lineup.

The Monthly Hate is a feature where I try to complain about things. I'm not a huge complainer, but I'll do my best.

I'll start with swearing more.

Fall 2010 was supposed to be another fine season for Sony exclusives. Last year boasted a stellar series of launches with Uncharted 2, Demon's Souls and Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack In Time - and 2010 was shaping up to be no slouch, either.

Was. Past tense.

Here's what we were expecting for October/November 2010:

Gran Turismo 5 - for the hardcore/hardcore demographic, could be argued as the single most-anticipated game for the PS3's entire lifespan. Not for me, of course - but for millions of enthusiasts, GT5 is the reason to buy a PS3.

God of War: Ghost of Sparta - Ready at Dawn's return to the PSP is said to be another powerhouse of technology and adventure.

The Sly Collection - Sucker Punch's beautiful, elegant and under-rated PS2 platformers come to the PS3 with this HD-up port, collecting all three games.

Little Big Planet 2 - addressing the casual/core consumer in equal measure, LBP2 is - like GT5 - an incredibly ambitious title. It has very big shoes to fill, and what the community has produced thus far in the beta has already handily outstripped the potential of the original.

So, what went wrong?

For Ghost of Sparta? Nothing. Ready at Dawn put their game out on time, to stellar reviews. Unfortunately, the same can't be said about the rest of this Fall's lineup.

The Sly Collection seemed to be the only other Sony title that would actually adhere to its release date - except then, it didn't.

November 9th came and went - but where was the fabled raccoon thief? Someone had stolen it! Stolen it away to the far-distant future of November 16th. Disgusting.

But that's not as bad as Gran Turismo 5. After years in development, constant teasing by Sony and release windows that were perennially pushed back, this year things were set in stone: November 2nd, 2010.

And then... no. "No, sorry, we won't be getting one of - if not the - most-anticipated PS3 games ever out when we said we would."

"So when will you put it out?"



"Soon! God! Get off my back!"

And finally, LBP2.

Announced for November 23rd, I think it's due out in January, now.

Honestly, this is just depressing as all hell.

* * *

Seriously, Sony. What the heck? It's not like your lineup was going to blow Halo: Reach or Call of Duty out of the water, but your titles were targeted towards a totally different audience, and you let this year's holiday lineup go sideways in nearly all ways.

Honestly, Ghost of Sparta aside, did you guys stick to any sort of plan for holiday 2010?

Oh fuck you.


  1. Well, at least you've got the "more swearing" part down.

    Seriously, though, I think so long as the titles are fantastic when they finally are released, people shouldn't complain (at least not too much). I say give them a bit more time if they think it's necessary. It's not like we want every studio to turn into Bethesda.

  2. Oh, totally. I think it was... Miyamoto who said (paraphrased) a game that's held back can eventually be great - a game that's released too early is bad forever.

    But still, Polyphony and Media Molecule aren't little indie devs who shouldn't know what they're doing - GT5 and LBP2 are pretty much it for Sony's fall lineup, and they really dropped the ball, here.

  3. Can't disagree there. Although I will say this: Valve and Blizzard.

  4. I was about to go with Blizzard as well. It's the perfect of example of how holding back a game can be... well.. the best.

  5. Valve and Blizzard are great examples of taking the time needed to get it done - God of War III would've benefited from that - but Valve & Blizzard don't come out with release dates that prove false. They work on the game for a half-decade, tell you it'll be ready about six months or a year beforehand and - lo and behold - it comes out when they say so.

  6. Ummmmmm not sure about that. True they never set actual dates until it's a sure thing but it's also true that they push titles thereabouts releases back for years. Starcraft: Ghost was pushed back until it no longer existed.

  7. Ghost was being developed by an external studio - Nihilistic Software. It doesn't speak to Blizzard's track record, but I get your point.

    My point is that the holiday season is the time of year to sell your games. I forget what the actual numbers are, but more games/consoles/crap consumers don't actually need are purchased for the holidays in North America than during the rest of the year combined. It's hugely important to have a strong lineup for it, and Sony dropped the ball so bad this year one would expect it to have been slimed with a butter-and-KY blend.

    To tell the truth, I'm not actually pissed off about it - the games will come out when they're ready, and they'll be better games for it - I'm just trying to point out that one of The Big Three really cocked up their holiday season.

  8. Er, don't forget about Valve Time. Even when they do finally give a release date, it's still late by hours/days/weeks/months/years/etc.

  9. Ah, good call. Valve was a bad example.

  10. You only have enough hate for one day a month? Come on, the gaming market has enough stupid shit happening to complain once a week, if not all the time.

  11. And sometimes not even then. October didn't even have a Monthly Hate post - but September's was pretty beefy.

  12. The Gran Turismo 5 thing has become so ludicrous it's just sad now

    I laugh

    I laugh that a company had to release a DEMO OF THE GAME FOR MONEY so they could subsidize completing it

    I laugh and I laugh and I laugh