Sony Computer Entertainment’s president of worldwide studios, Shushei Yoshida, admitted that the company recognizes that it was late to the party in integrating a platform-wide online system for the PlayStation family.
The latest issue of Edge magazine has its cover feature devoted to the brand-new repackaged PS3 Slim, including an interview with Sony head honcho Yoshida, in which he admits that their competitor Microsoft had beaten them to the punch as far as online functionality was concerned, in both the last generation and this one:
“I think we were late to offer the platform-level support, to make the online functionality work at that level.
“We made the prior decision that you do not introduce the common centralized network names into every experience, so publishers made their own. That was fine at the start, but as more and more games have online functionality you need a unified approach.
“So Microsoft took that approach in the last generation, and maybe that’s where people see the difference when they compare Xbox Live and PSN.”
It might be hard to remember back to the last generation, but there was once a time when not all online games went through Xbox Live or the PlayStation Network – when many games and companies had their own proprietary networks and matchmaking services. Now, all of these newfangled systems, with their friends lists and their Twitterbooks… why, back in the day, we had to add all of our friends manually for each game! Uphill in the snow! Er, sorry, got a bit off track.
Yoshida says that the company is looking to correct that as they move forward with things like the recent 3.0 firmware update – and that they might be looking to partner up with social networking giant Facebook: “Something like 300 million people already have accounts on Facebook. Why should we ignore that?”