Sony

Awkward: Official PlayStation montage features image taken from Wii U game, Pixiv user’s fan art

Take a quick look at the character-packed image above. That’s a whole lot of faces, right? And in the 20 years since Sony’s first video games console was released, they’ve all appeared on some PlayStation platform or other. Even if you’re more of an Xbox kid or a PC gamer, you have to admit that’s an impressive lineup, and for older PlayStation fans especially it’s bound conjure up a lot of happy gaming memories.

But in creating this image in honour of 20 years of PlayStation, it would seem that someone over at Sony Europe struggled to source one or two character images that really fit in with their vision. You’d think that being on the inside, an artist working for Sony would have access to a whole host of officially licensed images, but it looks like they decided to turn to the internet for help, using an image of Mega Man as he appears only in Nintendo’s latest edition of Super Smash Bros, and even borrowing a piece of fan art created by a Japanese Pixiv user, who later spotted their work on Sony’s official site. Awkward.

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Sony to co-produce door locks which can be opened entirely by smartphone

The list of things you can’t do with a smartphone grows smaller and smaller as time marches on, and one more thing to cross off that list is coming in May next year. A new device is scheduled to hit the market which will allow you to open your front door using your mobile device and a special app. Called Qrio Smart Lock, its crowdfunding page boasts that you can “protect your privacy with Sony security technology.”

…Yeah. The Qrio Smart Lock will sell for 10,500 yen (US$90) and if the buzz online is any indication, people couldn’t be more terrified at its arrival.

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More than 100 artists recreate Final Fantasy VII in epic fan video

Nearly 20 years after the release of Final Fantasy VII, the iconic Japanese RPG is still regarded as one of the best video games ever made. And although fans may have been disappointed by the recent announcement that the game won’t be given a facelift for its PS4 debut, Final Fantasy VII lovers can wallow in their grief by an amazing video compiled from 200 original works of arts from more than 100 artists. The artwork recreates key scenes from the video game, taking viewers on a very nostalgic walk back to the many days spent on their PlayStations with Cloud and his friends.

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Put some old-school in your new-gen with this 20th Anniversary special edition PlayStation 4

The original PlayStation turned 20 years old yesterday, so to mark the occasion Sony Computer Entertainment has unveiled a special limited-edition “20th Anniversary” PlayStation 4 console pimped out with the original 32-bit PlayStation’s colour scheme and logo as well as commemorative etching on both the console and controller.

Sexy hardware photos and videos after the jump!

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Sony’s PlayStation turns 20 years old, we look back at how it all began and the games we loved

If you grew up in the ’90s, chances are the original PlayStation was a part of your life. Arriving on the console scene long after rivals Nintendo and Sega, PlayStation was an altogether different kind of beast. Its games shipped on CDs, it boasted spiffy three-dimensional graphics, and one of its flagship titles even featured music by abrasive electro pop group The Prodigy. It may have been a dull grey slab of plastic, but PlayStation was the console that all the cool kids wanted.

By some cruel trick played on us by the forces of nature, Sony’s original PlayStation turns 20 years old today. This makes us feel tremendously bitter and old, but at the same time we thought this would be a good opportunity to look back at some of the great games that came into being through the console, and also to revisit the surprisingly dramatic tale of how PlayStation was born.

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The 20 most fun PlayStation titles, as picked by Japanese gamers

Two decades ago, Sony had displayed about as much skill in producing video games as Nintendo had Hollywood movies. Sure, Sony had published games sporadically under its Sony Imagesoft brand, but it’s hard to build much consumer goodwill with such a small catalogue of titles, especially when most of said titles are terrible.

Then, on December 3, 1994, the company launched the original PlayStation. While the 3DO and CD-i of fellow electronics manufacturers Panasonic and Phillips would both end in ignominious failure, Sony would go on to slice itself a very large piece of the pie in its new industry, dominating two generations of console gaming and remaining competitive ever since.

Of course, hardware isn’t worth much without fun games to play on it. Thankfully, Sony’s systems had plenty of hits, as shown by a poll of Japanese gamers’ 20 favorite PlayStation games.

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New Sony Japan ad for horror game The Evil Within measures fear levels with spit test

If you love scary games as much as I do, you’ve probably already heard all about the new multi-platform survival horror game The Evil Within. Known as Psychobreak in Japan, The Evil Within is a return to the classic survival horror genre initially popularized by the Resident Evil franchise (The Evil Within is directed by Shinji Mikami, director of the original Resident Evil and the so-called “father of survival horror”). Recent horror games have been criticized for putting too much emphasis on action and exploding zombie heads and for generally being, well, not all that scary actually. Once you’ve been numbed by too much formulaic brain-splattering, it’s hard to remember what it means to be truly scared, so this new advert by Playstation Japan for The Evil Within seeks to prove just how scary the game is, with science!

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Japanese ad for new PlayStation 4 function “Share Play” is surprisingly touching

There’s a stereotype about women and games. We can’t aim, we have no attention span, we only like cutesy games, we have to get our brothers/boyfriends/guy friends to clear the hard missions for us.

Well, this incredible advert for PlayStation 4’s Share Play - a new feature which allows PS4 owners to hop in and out of their friends’ games and even take full control without having to own a copy of the game – is set to smash those misconceptions like the proverbial glass ceiling! Watch as this Japanese girl gamer goes from zero to hero on her path to becoming the Goddess of Aiming!

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A look around this year’s Tokyo Game Show 【Video and photo dump】

As you’ve no doubt already heard, the annual Tokyo Game Show is currently underway at the Makuhari Messe exhibition centre in Chiba Prefecture (yup, just like Tokyo Disneyland, TGS isn’t actually in Tokyo…).

It’s fair to say this year’s show is a little smaller than in years gone by, but there’s still plenty to see and do. If, however, you’re one of the millions of poor souls who can’t simply hop on a train to check it out, or only ever have a chance to see the show on its much busier public days, we have a little treat for you today: three minutes of video and a whole host of photos taken at Tokyo Game Show by our very own staff.

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Sony really, really wants you to buy an Xperia smartphone 【Tokyo Game Show】

Over the last few years, Tokyo Game Show has become increasingly focused on mobile gaming. This year’s show is one of the smallest to date, with noticeably fewer booths and even big-name publishers seeming almost reluctant to make too much of a fuss of their triple-A titles.

But it’s not just Gree et al pushing mobile gaming in Japan. Console maker Sony, too, is getting in on the action by putting the spotlight on its own smartphone line while doing all it can to show that mobile and traditional console gaming needn’t be completely separate entities, with the company setting up two enormous Xperia booths opposite its PlayStation area at Tokyo Game Show 2014.

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Gaming culture takes a hit as Sony demos its virtual reality headset with schoolgirl leering sim

If, like me, you’ve dreamed of the day when the world comes to realise that video games are so much more than the pastime of Call of Duty-obsessed teens and neck-bearded basement dwellers, the arrival of mature, genuinely evocative titles such as last year’s Gone Home and The Last of Us will no doubt have sparked excitement that the dream is almost a reality. With games that are no longer afraid to broach any number of mature themes and issues, and in some cases even have the power to make players cry, non-gamers may one day soon–instead of scoffing at the images displayed our on screens as they pass by–actually want to sit down and watch, caught up in the scenes unfolding before them.

Unless, of course, the images on that screen are anything like those from the newest tech demo for Sony’s virtual reality headset, Summer Lesson, which looks to be mostly about leering at a schoolgirl in her bedroom while pretending to study.

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Newsflash: Silver “Dragon Quest Metal Slime Edition” PlayStation 4 unveiled by Sony 【Updated】

If the standard black and Destiny-themed white models of PlayStation 4 aren’t quite exotic enough for you, Sony Computer Entertainment Japan might have just the thing. That is, of course, providing you like your gaming with a dose of slime…

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, say hello to the Dragon Quest “Metal Slime Edition” PlayStation 4.

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New Sony Cyber-shot: a perfume bottle camera specifically designed for selfies

Recently, a weekend stroll around Tokyo took me to Roppongi, where I stumbled upon a giant replica of Godzilla, emerging waist-up from the grass next to a busy road. What ended up stopping me in my tracks was not the menacing monster with fluorescent blue spikes but the gaggle of girls running around his waist, holding up strange-looking perfume bottles as if to calm the beast with a spray of Chanel No. 5.

What the fashionable young ladies were actually doing came as a bit of a surprise; they were taking photos of Godzilla with iPhones in cases that resembled perfume bottles. It’s the hot new trend in China at the moment, and from the looks of things, we all might be following them soon as Sony has just released a perfume bottle that’s more than a case - it’s an actual Cyber-shot camera.

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PlayStation 3 gets a price cut in Japan, still costs more than it probably ought to

Sony Japan has announced that its ultra-slim, “charcoal black” PlayStation 3 console will become that little bit cheaper at the end of this month, following the arrival of a new SKU.

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Console wars get real with new transformers figures

Toymaker Takara Tomy took the previous console rivalry of Sega Genesis (known as Mega Drive in Japan) and Sony‘s PlayStation One and literally transformed it. The seemingly run-of-the-mill replicas are actually Transformers. The PSOne turns into the Autobot’s leader Optimus Prime while the Genesis turns into the Decepticon’s Megatron. Both figures were on display at earlier this month at the Summer Hobby Maker Joint Products Exhibition.

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Sony’s summer PlayStation Vita ads are all about growing up【Video】

We’re already well into the school summer holidays here in Japan, and Sony is taking the opportunity to entice younger gamers over to its decidedly more grown-up portable console, the PlayStation Vita. Join us after the jump for a closer look at these cheeky ads from Sony’s summer campaign.

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No peripheral vision – Japan’s gamers sound off on hardware add-on nightmares

One of the reasons I’ve done most of my video gaming with a console instead of a PC is the simplicity, on the consumer end, of the hardware. After plopping down the money for the system, you’re pretty much good to go, without the need to continually tinker with and incrementally upgrade it in order to play the latest games.

Still, that doesn’t mean everyone is satisfied to leave well enough alone in the console and handheld world, as evidenced by the piles of hardware add-ons that have been released over the years. Not every addition is a good one, though, as illustrated by the Japanese gamers who flocked to website Niconico News to share their video game peripheral horror stories.

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Sony Japan to release Destiny and The Last of Us Remastered bundles

Sony has just announced the release of two new PlayStation 4 consoles featuring designs from soon-to-be-released games Destiny and The Last of Us Remastered.

We’re not going to lie, they look pretty sweet.

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Despite success abroad, even Sony’s PlayStation 4 can’t inject life into Japan’s console market

There was quite the uproar when Sony announced that it would be releasing its newest console in its homeland months after going on sale in other territories. Judging by the reception the console has received, though, it looks like Sony may have been right to put Japan last when it came to PlayStation 4.

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No console? No problem! Sony tests streaming video games direct to TV sets

Those of you who don’t immediately catch fire the second you step outdoors may not yet have heard of PlayStation Now. Essentially the video game equivalent of Netflix, the service is due to be rolled out on July 31 and will, in theory, allow PlayStation 4 owners to pay to stream and play a selection of PlayStation 1, 2 and 3 games without having to download them first, with all the processing being done in the cloud.

But Sony is not content with going after just existing PlayStation owners, oh no. As promised at the beginning of the year, the company is now starting beta trials of the game rental service for certain high-end Sony TVs. That’s right, even if you don’t own an actual PlayStation console you’ll soon be able to play PlayStation games.

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