You can love it or loath it, but there's no doubt the PS3 will be a popular product with many people prepared to shell out through the nose just to get the next gen Sony console first.
With this in mind, UK Police have issued a warning
to those willing to pick up their consoles on launch day that they should wait until the light of day rather than risk being the target of thieves as they haul home their obvious and expensive bit of kit during the wee small hours.
Retail chains are sending contradictory reports about availability, the need to pre-order and hype. Whilst many retailers have been pushing pre-orders for months, Tim Ellis of HMV, which currently has plans to open 50 stores at midnight, said that, “Interest in PS3 is building the closer we get to launch. Much of our stock is accounted for via pre-orders, which may mean that some of our stores can actually look forward to selling some live stock for a change.”
So with little searching, you can probably just walk into a gaming retailer and pick up a PS3 without
pre-order on Friday, after a good nights kip.
GAME is offering a bacon butty (sandwich) as compensation for those up early. Many stores have, on Police advice, cancelled their midnight openings. Conspiracy theorists may suggest that this is less in response to Police warnings and more because the demand isn't as great as expected
Steve O'Brien, a 'veteran independent retailer' told MCV that "After nearly twenty years in the business I've never known such charged anticipation for a console launch - it's getting a little crazy..."
He obviously has a short term memory problem, since the four month old Nintendo Wii sold out at launch and is still struggling to meet the demand of the worldwide gaming public.
Steve went on to add, "We've had it a little over 24 hours now and we quite literally have to kick customers out the door come closing. I don't think your average gamer was quite prepared for how big a leap in quality the PS3 offers." Cynics would point out that this doesn't necessarily mean those 12 year old kids can drop a fat wad of Smiths
come the weekend.
The delay could at least mean that Sony will finally do something right and not leave anyone disappointed, unlike Nintendo or Microsoft
, who seem to be barely capable of when it comes to console availability.
Will you be going to queue up and get a console at midnight? Will you turn up the morning after for a bacon butty? Or will you give the PS3 a wide berth? Let us know over in the forums.