03-03-06 - 1


I thought Cach� was pretty great. It was kind of funny seeing it in the theater and hearing half the audience going "oh no, what the fuck, this is bullshit". The acting is pretty fantastic, all the interpersonal relationships are very realistic and interesting.

This Video of Spore is pretty awesome. WTF is up with the foliage, though? There are like 10 blades of grass in the world guys, get a proper decorator renderer. The procedural creature stuff is awesome. The world looks pretty boring, actually it reminds me of this ancient Amiga game "Drakken" (unrelated to the later Surreal game "Drakan"), which was this RPG with these giant, empty worlds scattered with random crap. I find these games cool in a purism sense, but they're missing a huge aspect of why I play games (when I do) - which is to see the cool art that someone has very specifically made to be rocking cool. Spore seems like a bunch of different games tacked together, which may or may not be cool. The question is whether tacking them together makes the whole better than the sum of the parts. In the worst case games like this often become as bad as the worst of its parts.

I read that the PS3 might cost $900 per unit to produce, and presumably they'll sell it for around $300, which is a ridiculous loss of $600 per unit !! I'm sure they justify this internally by saying it gives them the gateway to the home media system, which they can leverage to sales of lots of high margin products, like games and Blu-Ray DVD's. In practice, many people have tried this idea in the past (sell a big loss leader to get the user attached), and it's never ever worked. It was MS'es big mistake with the Xbox, which they seem to have corrected for the Xbox360. Sony got it right with the PS2 (making it reasonably cheap to make), and seem to have totally fucked up here. Supposedly the expensive piece is the blu-ray DVD reader, which is stupid.

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