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Sony Screws the European Market (Again)

Playstation 3
With the PS3's European launch finally approaching (but still a month away), our friends in Europe and Australia are finally close to Sony's next generation. But this eager anticipation may take a downward spin with the latest news from Sony.

Striving to cut costs, Sony has announced that the European PS3's backward compatibility will be far more limited than the North American and Japanese versions. Only a "limited range" of PlayStation 2 titles will play on the European PS3, while a "broad range" of original PlayStation titles will function. A short list of compatible games will be available at launch, and the list will be expanded as Sony gets around to it. Specifically, the PS3 will not ship with the Emotion Engine chip, which was essentially the CPU for the PS2.

Sony intends to focus on software emulation as a cheaper solution to providing backwards compatibility to European gamers.

Source: GameSpot

Sigh. Sony, Sony, Sony... You're going to charge European gamers the highest prices worldwide for your product, and now you're removing one of its most attractive features?

If this had happened to the US version, there'd be no way that I'd buy a PS3. I don't like making stacks of consoles, and, frankly, holding onto my older titles means a lot to me. And what about the people who were planning on making the PS3 their first Sony console? What games are they supposed to play? Launch titles? Oh, please.


Written by


SilverlanceComment 1: 2007-02-26 20:11
Silverlance Backwards compatibility being one of its most attractive features? I dunno about that (personally if the games I played were on a PS2, I'd buy a PS2 to play them - which is what I did) but I have to admit that's a kick in the backside.

However, I understand where they're coming from. If the european market is less profitable than the japanese or american markets are, Sony will have to cut somewhere to make ends meet. And let's face it: the PS3 isn't a PS2 - if you want to play PS2 games, a shiny new PS2 is only about a hundred bucks. A PS3 is quite a few hundred more. Obviously you're not buying a PS3 to play PS1/2 games, you're buying one to play PS3 games.

It's an unfortunate move, though. The cost of the PS3 is high, and having a PS2 to trade in (especially if your PS2 games remain playable) can help quite a lot. Just how much this move is saving Sony is what I'm curious about. Is it really worth it? Or is it just going to save a few bucks on production costs so that Sony can sell their console at pretty much the same price the full unit sells for?
john aitonComment 2: 2007-02-26 20:23
john aiton another inferior product for Europe then thumbdown.gif

I'll import a US ps3 ; before release, better quality and a lot cheaper too
fatmanComment 3: 2007-02-27 19:16
fatman Woah, that's a kick in the teeth. I was planning to go back to a few titles, and I'm sure many other people were.
I wouldn't bother trading in the PS2 to help you in Europe Siverlance, I think you'll get very little savings from that here. Probably £15.

I think Sony are taking advantage, as they know so many in the UK are so keen to get a PS3 and it would be nigh on impossible to put them off. Shame.
sweetdudeComment 4: 2007-02-28 09:20
Quote (Silverlance @ 26th February 2007 20:11)
Backwards compatibility being one of its most attractive features? I dunno about that (personally if the games I played were on a PS2, I'd buy a PS2 to play them - which is what I did) but I have to admit that's a kick in the backside.

That's exactly what I think. I've got games that won't run on my PS2 (for some reason) so I have to plug in my PSX for them. Let me tell you: it's really difficult and time consuming. I had to give up half way to get a cup of tea before I could finish the job. If the PSX games I play come out on PSN anyway then I won't even need the agony of taking one power lead out and putting the other in.

Also, European and Australian gamers are getting Casino Royale free to compensate. Pretty good of them if you ask me; it's such a trivial matter. As for the time it's taken to come out... It gives nobody the excuse that it's too expensive. I've been saving for a while now and I've had the money since last week. Basically, if there was money to be wasted on bad food or taxis instead of walking; I threw it in the PS3 fund. The wait will be worthwhile for MGS4 and FFXIII, among other titles.

Everything costs more in Britain than in the States. It's an economic fact. In some cases, what costs £500 here will be $500 there. Cars, for instance, are much cheaper in the US due to the American desire for cheap motoring and low fuel costs. My dad sometimes talks about his trip to Miami, and he bought a week's shopping (£100 is what he usually spends) for roughly £20! And since it's mostly Americans that complain about us having to pay more, I don't really understand why.
Del SComment 5: 2007-02-28 16:31
Del S Once upon a time, we never had backwards compatability you know.

And now we haves it we can't lives without it!

Really thinking either that the fat bloke should sing, or Sony should have waited an extra year.

Still, gives me a better excuse to drop £500... on airsoft.
sweetdudeComment 6: 2007-03-01 18:39
sweetdude Now that I've read this, I don't think we need to worry.

Basically it's saying that instead of having the specific hardware needed to run PS2 and PSX games, it's running them on an emulator with the PS3's obese computer. So there will still be "thousands of PS2 and PlayStation games available." Poor us.
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