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Survey: PlayStation Home. Excited? Or skeptical? |

There’s a lot of both excitement and skepticism about PlayStation Home. Here’s a list of common reasons for each. What’s your take on the issue?


Reasons to Get Excited for Home

  • Character avatars provide informal non-verbal communication that you don’t get with plain text/voice chat.
  • The Second Life or Web3D type concept has untapped potential and PlayStation Home looks like a much more polished and accessible system
  • Platform-wide lobby and community.
  • Attend E3-like press events yourself virtually rather than read media coverage off of a web site.
  • Game or movie promotional web sites might be more interesting as a virtual place that you can actually walk into and observe the vibe of the crowd.


Reasons to be Skeptical of Home

  • 3D avatar centric interface is unnecessarily bulky compared to a simple menu-driven interface. Even if both style of interfaces are available, why bother with the 3D version?
  • What’s the point? Feature set doesn’t look compelling compared to existing socialization and community systems.
  • Lofty concepts like this often look amazing on paper when everything is in your imagination, but the finished products usually never meet those ambitions.
  • Reports from beta users are rather underwhelming.

UPDATE: Minor additions to skeptical list.

  • I think there is a 2D element to Home that doesn’t get as much press. N’Gai mentioned it recently. It makes it sound as if the #D part of Home is there as the sizzle part of Home. The 3D part may garner a lot of press and it does display well from a PR point of view.
    Good looking avatars blow mii’s away. And the architecture is nice, (personal opinion)
    As for the feature set. That is going to expand over time. Remember the PS3 couldn’t do a lot of things a year ago. Now it’s really getting feature rich.

  • JimmyStewart

    I still don’t understand what the big deal is. I’ve been in the beta for something like a year now and it’s just as boring as it sounds… even with the changes it’s gone through recently. I guess it’s just not for someone like me.

    I’m far more excited about the changes we’ve been seeing lately. Trophies for example. The in game XMB is a lot better than I was expecting and I’m really hoping they’ll get the video store out some time soon. These are all things that I’m eagerly interested in seeing.

    mcloki, These avatars might technically look better than the Wii’s Miis but I think that’s missing the point. I don’t like the Wii particularly… the last time I turned mine on was to get the USB keyboard update a long time ago. But what they are doing seems more in line with making a Mii. I don’t think they’ve done much with it yet, but it’s a good building block for the direction the Wii has been taking. I think it’s a HUGE mistake for Sony and MS to try and follow that lead. They don’t understand the appeal of the Mii to the market they’re selling to. I don’t want to use the term, but casual gamers like things like Miis. I think Sony and MS are both misunderstanding what there audience wants and is instead trying to shoe horn in on the Wii’s success. The fact that both companies are pursuing Mii counterparts just proves that point. They take something simple that’s just supposed to be a representation of you and at least in the case of Home turn it into this massive bulky over complicated idea. It’s something that most of the hardcore gamers won’t bother with and most of the casual gamers wouldn’t be able to understand. It might look nice… but as the Wii has demonstrated casual gamers don’t care too much about graphics.

    I’m hoping Sony can do something with Home. Outside of the Mii connection it’s something they’re taking the lead on. I just don’t see where they could take it that would justify most people taking interest in it. The whole idea of creating a PS3 version of yourself to walk to a movie theater to watch a movie… outside of obviously suggesting a person does that in real life I just don’t see why I’d want to subject myself to that. I love firing up their video store and renting movie… I don’t need a fake movie theater for my fake persona to sit in.

  • Darrin

    “2D Home” doesn’t exist outside of one little quip N’Gai made or some unannounced part of Home that the public hasn’t heard of. Everything Sony has publically shown or discussed about PlayStation Home has been 3D. Of course, the PS3 needs a regular menu-style interface for friends, chat, trophies, and all other social features. That could be what N’Gai is referring to or he could be referring to something that we haven’t seen yet?

    Home’s feature set will expand over time? It probably will, but I don’t get excited about something until there’s something of substance to actually get excited about. Right now I’m just excited about the initial possibilities that I can see.

  • Darrin

    “I don’t need a fake movie theater for my fake persona to sit in.”

    Sure, no one is going to use Home for regular, every-day movie-watching. When I watch a movie with my girlfriend, it would be ridiculous to watch on a virtual movie screen inside my TV.

    However, if I’m at a virtual E3 event, and they have a preview clip up on a virtual big screen, I’m going to want the added context and nonverbal communication of the avatars and the crowd. Also, I can see the virtual movie screens being cool for sharing video clips with my online friends or I can see themed rooms having videos playing on the wall that add to the ambiance. And if a video catches my attention I can switch to full-screen mode.

    Home isn’t about mind blowing 3D graphics, but I’m glad they look reasonably good. The 3D in Second Life looks terrible. It looks like a PS1 game or something.

    I’m sorry to hear that the current beta is dull, but it’s really too early to judge. Wait until all the big studios have created their virtual spaces, wait until you’ve seen a big E3-like press event in Home, wait until its open to the public and we have a chance to see what the community will do with it.

  • bmore2bstuy

    First time posting here…interesting topic…well I don’t expect to spend a whole lot of time in home myself as my gaming time is limited…but Home is one of the reasons I own a PS3….not Home directly but the fact that it seems to me that Sony likes taken risks….pushing the envelope…and broadening the overall gaming experience. Personally most of my friends aren’t gamers and I think its cool to socialize with folks all around the world that happen to share the same hobby. I’m skeptical about how Home will be received by the average hard core gamer but like someone said earlier I marvel at what it could be once the larger community is let in. Re: the beta…you would expect it to be boring wouldn’t you??? It’s an experience built on community…if the community is lacking the experience will be lacking. If I remember correctly people said the same thing about the Warhawk BETA….and dare I say Warhawk has turned out to be…..still my favorite game on the PS3 hands down.


  • I have been beta testing it for 1 year as well.
    Once the novelty aspect wears off (2 hours), it’s hard to find reason to go back to it.

    As an IM or chat interface, it’s way too heavy,
    As a source of casual games, it’s overdone.
    As a virtual world, it’s too empty, but looks and works much better than Second Life.

    I would rather make all PS3 games Web 2.0-ready than invest any money in HOME.

    I guess I am not the target for this offering.

  • What I would like to see is the use of my Home avatar in other games. I’d like to start Killzone 2 multiplayer and use my Home avatar as the base character to dress up in army fatigues.

  • John

    For something like Home to succeed, it would take a lot of content, user-made like in 2nd life, of developper-made like in MMORPGs, but then that becomes more of a projecton its own than an interconnecting hub…
    As a chat room, it’s way overblown.
    I’ve really no idea what Sony’s aiming for with HOME.

  • Trieloth

    Thats funny people in the Home beta shouldn’t even have it. I can see why its taking so long.
    Iam still excited about it.

  • @Trieloth

    You mean I should say it’s great because I am part of the beta?
    That wouldn’t be very mature, would it?

    I offered Sony tons of constructive criticism over the past few months.

    It’s their job to handle my feedback in any way they like.
    The overall opinion among beta testers will eventually become the overall opinion of all users.
    It’s silly to assume beta testers are biased, when they have been selected to represent the overall market.

  • I’m excited by home, the users (US!) will make it what it is, providing Sony put’s the building block in place, sure you could perform a lot of what home offers in the real world on the net but getting together with a few global friends in this environment, to me, seems awesome!

  • I like the 3D representation. Why should that be negative?

  • Pc