Following days of speculation on the internet about its GDC announcements, Sony has finally owned up to the development of a new social community called PlayStation Home.
Speaking at the Games Developers Conference, Sony bigwig Phil Harrison revealed how the online community, which is it hoped will rival Xbox Live, will work.
Think of it as a cross between Xbox Live and Second Life. Each PS3 user will have his or her own online avatar, heavily customisable. The avatar will live in its own apartment, also heavily customisable - so you can pick your clothes, pick your decor, pick your wallpaper. In the apartment there will be various things to do - you can watch game trailers on your virtual TV, you can view your achievements in a big glass cabinet in your achievements room, and you can also see a massive room full of all the achievements for all the games you don't have - tempting into playing them, no doubt.
You will be able to invite your friends over to hang out and interact (voice, video and text chat) and, eventually, you'll also be able to venture out into the wider PlayStation world, where brands like Coke, Levis, AOL might have their own apartments for you to visit.
This sounds like a great attempt at bringing interactivity and community to PS3. But here's the only problem - the best thing about Second Life is the sex. And we suspect that there won't be sex in PlayStation Home - only far, far more cynical marketing. Which is not so much of a good trade-off.
But at least it's a piece of Sony news we can report on that isn't overwhelmingly negative/lame, and that's a good start for Sony's rehabilitation back into the next-gen console game.
There's more details on PSH over here
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