The E3 is over and I have decided that the next generation of consoles is overrated – apart from the WiiU of course, which is cool – and so I’ve decided to recklessly spend my hard-earned money on a PlayStation 3, Sony’s current console. The PS3 already came out in late 2006, so it’s meanwhile almost 7 years old, and still its graphics are seen as top notch. The price for the “super slim” model with 12 GB has dropped and there are some exclusive games for it that I can’t play on PC or Xbox360, most recently The Last Of Us, which everyone is raving about.
I’ve often said that I don’t see why anyone would ever buy a console just to play one or two exclusive games, and I still feel that way. However, what eventually did sell me on the PS3 is the PlayStation Network Plus. For about 45 EUR a year – about the price of Microsoft’s Gold Live membership – Sony gives you several free games every month that you can download and play for as long as you have a PSN+ membership. Even if you only bought two or three games a year in the shops, you’d already be over that amount!
When I received the PS3, I had also ordered a 500GB extra hard disk for it, which I highly recommend. The hard disk came a day later, so once I had set up the PS3, installed the latest update and downloaded one of the free games with my 30-day free trial membership of PSN+, the PS3 already gave me an error that the disk was full.
When the hard disk arrived the next day and I had installed it – the easiest thing in the world, really, even if you’re not tech savvy – I again stumbled through the confusing menus to get to my free games and set them all to download. It is an impressive list – currently Kingdoms of Amalur, Catherine, Ico & Shadow of the Colossus, Little Big Planet Karting, Xcom: Enemy Unknown and some PS Vita games. I set the PS3 to download overnight and switch off once the last download was done, and wouldn’t you know it, the download of the first game got stuck after about 80% and the PS3 ran all night.
The next day, I moved the PS3 so I could attach it to an Ethernet cable, but the download speed was still very slow. But patience is a virtue, so I waited… and waited…
Eventually, the wait was over and Ico was finally ready on my console, so I eagerly tried to start it and – oh, wait, it needs to be installed first?! Installing takes forever, too. More waiting. When that was done, I tried again to play it but – oh, look, an update is available! So I told the PS3 to download and install the update, which it never did, because it asked me again on my next try if I wanted to get the update. I ignored it and after quite a while of waiting for the game to load, I could FINALLY play Ico.
Anyway, this blog entry is going on forever, just like the load times of a PS3. So I’ll stop here and say that, yes, the PS3 is nice so far because of the free games, the graphics, the fact that I can also watch BluRays with it – but that, geez, after 6 years, you’d think they’d have patched the system enough to reduce the waiting times!