Playstation Home finally hitting the PS3 – does anyone still care?

September 22, 2008

Playstation Home finally hitting the PS3 - does anyone still care?Playstation Home has been one of the most delayed products in gaming I have ever experienced. But, now, the wait may finally be coming to an end, as speculation grows over a full open Home launching in October. Well, we can but dream. The question is: does anyone still care?

Playstation Home has been in the making for well over three years now, and most people still haven’t had the chance to experience this supposedly all-encompassing online virtual world for the PS3. The luckier ones have been invited to take part in the Playstation Home closed beta currently taking place, but it’s only a fraction of the millions of PS3 owners there are worldwide.

The rest of us are sitting at home waiting for some official nod from Sony that we’re finally going to be able to access Home and check it out for ourselves. While not official, that nod may have inadvertently happened, with PS3fanboy passing on a tip from a beta tester.

A bug is affecting gamers using the Home beta, causing network problems and their PS3 to freeze sporadically. Playstation Home manager, TedtheDog, responded to the concerns in a message board post, stating how the problem should be fixed in an upcoming firmware upgrade. He said:

“2.5 is what we’re waiting for and ‘October’ is what I’ve heard, later October is my guess.”

So, Firmware Update 2.50 is pencilled in for late October, and Home 1.00 (the beta is currently v0.98) is due to be released at the same time. This could quite easily signal the end of the closed beta and a wider open beta launching for all to try. Possibly. Hopefully.

The Playstation Blog has since also announced the expansion of the closed beta, with a new round of invitations being sent out. This definitely seems to signal that something is happening, and it surely won’t be long before Playstation Home is with us all. So, should we care?

Home has been a long time coming, and with such huge expectations built up over such a long period of time, I’m not sure if it will ever be able to live up to the hype. But, the long development time should have allowed Sony to get enough features in place, and more importantly, working correctly, that new users will more likely be in awe rather than disappointed.

I’ve been quite critical of Home for the past year or so but now that it’s nearly here, I must admit to some intrigue in to having a go. The big test will be whether after the initial Second Life-style open-mouthed gasping, Home offers anything worthy or interesting for the long-term.

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