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PS4 - Destiny

Is the “format war” over?

Jeff Rubenstein's Avatar + Posted by Jeff Rubenstein on Feb 18, 2008 // Sr. Social Media Manager

I don’t know how much you gamers have been following the Blu-ray vs HD-DVD “format war”, but since every PS3 owner has a stake in it, I thought I’d share some interesting developments that have taken place recently…

If you *have* been paying attention, you’ll probably remember that about a month ago, Warner Bros. threw its considerable weight behind the Blu-ray Disc format. Then in the last week, both Best Buy and Netflix also chose Blu-ray as their format of choice.

This weekend, in what might be the decisive victory in this “format war,” Toshiba – leader of the HD-DVD camp – is reported to be pulling out of the HD-DVD business. Analysts had been saying that a lot of consumers are waiting for a clear format victor before plunking down their hard-earned money on a device. Based on this month’s NPD numbers, consumers had seen which way the wind was blowing even before this week.

Blu-ray’s benefits for gaming development are clear. For those of you who have seen their PS3 as the hub of their home entertainment center, I hope you find this piece of news reassuring as well.

Happy Presidents’ Day, and see you from GDC!

//Add Your Own

186 Comments

51

+ RevolutionBlues on February 18th, 2008 at 12:42 pm said:

@47

They only bought the CELL manufacturing rights. All the design and IP rights and licenses remain with Sony and IBM.


52

+ enrichovega on February 18th, 2008 at 12:44 pm said:

@ anyone

Is there anyway to adjust the settings on the PS3 which enables full screen blu-ray viewing? I am connected via HDMI and am tired of the widesreen black bars view.


53

+ Enedok on February 18th, 2008 at 12:52 pm said:

Good for sony to come out as a winner in a format wars.

(Now i just need a HDTV)

@ gamecompanies
I know the transfer speed for bluray are slower then 360 dvd. (First gen blu-ray players)
But you give us a minigame or load up a small pre level we can play with? It don’t have to be just a % bar,


54

+ Jeigh on February 18th, 2008 at 12:54 pm said:

Ah, this is nothing new. We’ve been talking about this in the PlayStation.com forums for awhile now. I have to agree with Kenji-san (#11): strike while the iron’s hot; ride this wave as far as you can and see how much momentum you can pick up; no time like the present; now or never; three out of four dentists– wait… Well, move quickly guys- this is certainly an opening if ever I saw one.


55

+ RevolutionBlues on February 18th, 2008 at 1:01 pm said:

Sony REALLY need to come out fighting on all fronts after this victory. Bigger HDs, return of BC, introduction of DS3 worldwide. All should be announced this month.


56

+ Capt. Insano on February 18th, 2008 at 1:02 pm said:

@1

One of the main reasons Sony put a HDD in all PS3 SKUs is so developers would be able to utilize it as a cache to help minimize load times.

1 Blu-ray disc > 4 DVDs

The amount of time spent installing a game < the time you would otherwise spend waiting for it to load periodically


57

+ severeon on February 18th, 2008 at 1:02 pm said:

It seems you forgot the most devastating blow to the HD-DVD camp; that is, the fact that Wal-mart will no longer carry the format.


58

+ Rux on February 18th, 2008 at 1:04 pm said:

HD DVD is a joke, it’s like the loser that refuses to give up. HD DVD is the last Nascar on the track, with each tired blown out, but the driver still has his foot on the gas. Please, HD DVD, do us all a favor and die


59

+ RevolutionBlues on February 18th, 2008 at 1:07 pm said:

I’m amazed at how most people are angry at Sony for winning rather than at Toshiba for dragging it out so long and adding a massive fire sale to burn even more consumers.

If that isn’t “anti-consumer” I don’t know what is.


60

+ DickieDunn on February 18th, 2008 at 1:11 pm said:

Congrats Blu-ray.

Now that you won the format war, make your format more affordable.

$29.99 for a movie!?! Good luck with that!!!


61

+ DankandSticky on February 18th, 2008 at 1:16 pm said:

hope they get cheaper now


62

+ xxLONESTARxx on February 18th, 2008 at 1:18 pm said:

Seriously…did anyone really think that HD would win?


63

+ bond2e2 on February 18th, 2008 at 1:18 pm said:

blue-ray is way better


64

+ TheApprentice on February 18th, 2008 at 1:18 pm said:

Congrats Sony!!!


65

+ RevolutionBlues on February 18th, 2008 at 1:29 pm said:

@61

Not after I found out the capacity of BD over HD DVD and that the PS3 would come with BD built in. I wasn’t that stupid!

;o)


66

+ pr1m3_5u5p3ct on February 18th, 2008 at 1:33 pm said:

to #1: It is an OPTION to install some of the game onto the HDD to make loading times shorter.


67

+ cmargary on February 18th, 2008 at 1:39 pm said:

Well… I just hope that if you win, the blu-ray camp never rest to make new feature and everything…

For now, I will give you a link
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/content_page.php?aid=33204


68

+ WHAT on February 18th, 2008 at 1:41 pm said:

Congrats, but if you guys had your act together before this war started. We would not have had to go through this mess.


69

+ jdgiotta on February 18th, 2008 at 1:47 pm said:

What is SCE’s stance in the whole downloading versus Blu-Ray medium? There are rumors regading NetFlix doing a video to console download service, is this true?


70

+ scarface3010 on February 18th, 2008 at 1:54 pm said:

I have been following the Bluray vs. HDDVD battle for some time now and I am very happy that the format I’ve invested in has won. Thankfully the HD confusion is over (or will be soon).


71

+ byrd864 on February 18th, 2008 at 1:58 pm said:

and for being a loyal early adopter I will ask of one thing…

PLEASE lower the price of Blu-ray movies. Not asking for much, but I’d like to pay equal that of a regular DVD. Everyones catalog needs to be painted “blu” now. So hurry it up!


72

+ Juan Pablo on February 18th, 2008 at 2:01 pm said:

This was totally expected, congrats to you and to us for choosing the PS3, I know that this victory won’t be an excuse to raise the prices of BR discs and players because the amount of sales will go up right?


73

+ GAME-HERO on February 18th, 2008 at 2:01 pm said:

Downloading HD movies (imho) is in the far future, plus people like to physically have something in their possesion for the hard earned money. Example: I bought warhawk rather than downloading it. I still download stuff (i.e. games, trailers) from PS store, just I personally would rather have it in my hands (sometimes).


74

+ orange-taiko on February 18th, 2008 at 2:11 pm said:

I don’t understand how any fans of film can post comments such as “it’s been good for consumers, because players have dropped in price.”

HD releases have been squeezed through a strainer with *new* crap like “Daddy Day Camp” seeing release dates while films like “Seven Samurai” wait and wait.

Quoting from the Criterion Collection website:

“Will Criterion be releasing its catalog in Blu-Ray or HD DVD?

We know this is a concern for many of our customers, but we honestly don’t think consumers should have to take a stand in a format war. That said, we know how good our films can look in high definition because we’ve been doing all our mastering and restoration in HD for years….as soon as that solution emerges, we’ll be there.”

Gee, hope Uncle Buck can save $125 bucks on the Blue-Wave or H-DVD at the WalMart, or enjoy “Ran” in remastered Blu-Ray before I lose my hearing and vision to old age? Screw the cheap-skate consumers. Give me my HD!!!


75

+ Reservoir_Dogg on February 18th, 2008 at 2:12 pm said:

Finally $ony got their “Revenge Takedown”(Playin’ Burnout;-))!


76

+ P_tear_griffin on February 18th, 2008 at 2:14 pm said:

Good job!!


77

+ OrganicShadow on February 18th, 2008 at 2:19 pm said:

Everyone is missing the point: It’s a game console, NOT A PC, why should we have to install a game? One of the selling points of game consoles is not needing to install a game. Just turn it on and go.

Now we have to install? And we STILL get loading screens? Sure, if the install made loading screens go away that would be one thing- but they don’t.

-Put faster BD drives in the PS3′s soon.
-Make it a requirement for all future games that installs are OPTIONAL.


78

+ Bender Rodriguez on February 18th, 2008 at 2:25 pm said:

I don’t care about it personally, because hi-def movie watching is still too expensive to me, but I am glad it’s about over. I’m tired of seeing topics about it flooding PS3 boards where ever I go.


79

+ wocyob on February 18th, 2008 at 2:25 pm said:

pwned!!!


80

+ Premonition on February 18th, 2008 at 2:41 pm said:

keep up the good work sony, make sure you keep saying that space does matter, and bigger games will come a long :)


81

+ Qbrain on February 18th, 2008 at 2:43 pm said:

Can someone please tell me if this is real or fake???

http://www.colorize.net/home/

-Q


82

+ Money1 on February 18th, 2008 at 2:49 pm said:

WOOOOOOH!!!!! THE FUTURE IS BLU


83

+ p-s-3 on February 18th, 2008 at 2:51 pm said:

Are we going to see a PS3 with built-in Betamax drive soon??? ;-D
When Toshiba confirm it i’ll believe it!!!
You guys don’t believe everything thats said on the internet do you! ;-D
Sounds all over tho, THANK GOD! (&SONY)
;)


84

+ KazeEternal on February 18th, 2008 at 2:55 pm said:

Re-assurance is not necessary, I’ve believe in PS3 from day one along with Bluray. HD-DVD was so unnecessary they should have jumped on board when Sony invited them to the BDA in the first place.


85

+ GamerMan76 on February 18th, 2008 at 3:32 pm said:

@OrganicShadow

No offense but are you daft? Did you not read everyone’s comments. Is “Everyone is missing the point:” or are you missing everyone’s point?

the point everyone is trying to get across to you is it’s CAPCOM imposing this not any other game company. It’s the developers over at CAPCOM that are causing you to act like a fool in a topic about Blu-Ray winning the format war.

Most games have the install option as an “option” like Bladestorm which is under 2g and everything else I have is under 1g. The only games 4+g are Capcom games.

A new blu-ray drive won’t help those that have the older system and it won’t reduce costs for the newer systems. That isn’t going to happen until the PS4.

“-Make it a requirement for all future games that installs are OPTIONAL.” The majority of games it is optional or only a couple minutes of install.

The reason for Console gaming is not so you won’t have to install anything for example FFXI, but so you don’t have to consistantly upgrade, make sure the drivers are up oto date, that your graphics card matches the games requirements, and etc. The point is put the game in and play. If an install is the cause of your concern. Then don’t buy games from companies that make you install but I bet you that won’t happen. I guess you don’t like Digital Downloads either because they make you install games also. You must be missing out on a lot of PSN games.

—-Sorry to everyone for the long rant but I read all these comments and he doesn’t seem to get Everyone’s point that Blu-ray isn’t the reason that he has to install.


86

+ Aaron on February 18th, 2008 at 3:46 pm said:

Yep its over Jeff! Blu-Ray wins PS3 wins! Sony wins!


87

+ Vassago on February 18th, 2008 at 3:56 pm said:

Sony take his revange from the beta/vhs war :) WwOoooOOoooTTtTtttT Im so happy for Sony and for all blu ray owner ! Congratulation Sony. (Do you read the new microsoft said he will put a blu-ray player on the 360 of @#@$) Ha HA ha Ha HA ……………………


88

+ OrganicShadow on February 18th, 2008 at 4:18 pm said:

@84: Really? Then explain to me the other games that make me install huge files. Oblivion comes to mind, at a whopping 4.5gb. I thought only Capcom was above 4gb… Some say optional, yet when you first load up the game that’s the first thing it makes you do. Wow, “optional” doesn’t let you say no?

360′s DVD drive reads data from the disc faster than the 2x BD drive in the PS3. This is fact. Had the BD drive been, say, 4x it would be able to stream the data off the disc faster and wouldn’t need their to be a CACHING FILE, which is what these files are. Sure, it would have added significant cost, but im not trying to argue what Sony should have done with the hardware. Get it through your thick skull. I’m arguing what Sony should have included in their certification requirements for PS3 software.

I’m not saying BD shouldn’t be in the PS3, im saying that if Sony put a 2x drive in initially and knew that it would(as they even admit this) cause some developers to need the HDD as a crutch for loading times, they should have enforced a rule for certification that the install be optional. How hard is that? To make Capcom, among others, put a little more effort into the game, release it a month later than planned, but with efficient enough code that the install can be optional without ruining the experience for those that CANNOT AFFORD THE SPACE(much less another hard drive).

Also, if Sony were to enforce that installs would be optional, then this would all be a moot point by you guys trying to act like Capcom is the only company doing it. If it were enforced, then more pressure would be on game developers to make sure their games run smoothly, as those with 40gb units would be opting out.

THIS ISN’T ABOUT CAPCOM. So quit trying to act like it is. Actually listen to what im saying and put it all into perspective instead of focusing only on Capcom.

And yes, I have a lot of PSN games. I have a lot of music, photos, videos, and game saves too, but you know what? I still get a game console so that I don’t have to install anything. Digital distribution and installing a disc based game isn’t the same thing, but nice try.

As for the topic at hand, this isn’t JUST a victory for Sony, this is a victory for the entire Blu-ray consortium, the film industry, and the consumer. HDTV actually has a clear and defined path now as far as disc-based mediums are concerned until broadband can penetrate deep enough for digital distribution to make any impact to the average consumer.

I’m interested in seeing how much the BD player would cost of it were to be released for the 360. Would they try to price it competitively with PS3, ie: 360 + BD player = PS3 price?


89

+ jgstyle on February 18th, 2008 at 4:23 pm said:

Good job, Sony. Seriously. But now maybe you can focus on adding basic functionality to your machine like simple video playlists so we can continuously play a group of videos. Ugh what is the PROBLEM??


90

+ JumperPrime on February 18th, 2008 at 4:24 pm said:

The PS3 has been Blu-ray’s secret weapon in the format war since it was first released. Parents buy their kids a PS3 for gaming, then discover that it can also be used to play movies on Blu-ray. Plus it is the best Blu-ray player currently on the market, the only one currently available which can be upgraded to fully utilize the features of Profile 2.0 just by updating the firmware.

The XBox 360 is good only for playing video games. You have to pay extra for the HD-DVD player(through the nose in fact, since the add-on is in the same price range as a standalone HD-DVD player) and it stores its games on DVDs, which are already crammed to capacity and beyond. If Microsquash had taken the time to fix the design flaws and straighten out the component quality problems(like Sony did, praise be to Ken Kutagari) they might have realized that putting in a HD-DVD drive standard might have made it more competitive with Sony’s upcoming console.

This format war would have been a much longer and bloodier affair if HD-DVD had its own gaming console like Blu-ray has the PS3.

Lucky for us, Microsquash prefers instant gratification & cheap thrills and doesn’t believe in futureproofing. PS3 and XBox are a classic Tortoise and Hare scenario. XBox 360 was first out of the gate, but its widespread reliability problems and the fact that it’s already resorting to multi-disc games means it will die an early death while the futureproof PS3 continues to increase the quality and complexity of its games while still storing everything on a single Blu-ray disc.


91

+ Garconis on February 18th, 2008 at 4:33 pm said:

Just gotta thank Sony for introducing a new format into their system, yet again. First it was CDs with the PS. And now Blu-ray with the PS3 (which was a much ballsier move). And I’m glad you did it! FYI, Toshiba haven’t announced anything yet, but it will definitely happen soon.


92

+ crazyeighty8 on February 18th, 2008 at 4:34 pm said:

I wonder how many copies of “casino Royal” sony gave away with early buyers of the ps3. I’m pretty damm sure they made gamers aware of blu-ray, dont pretend. Its the reason I went out and bought a HD tv so I could watch it as it was meant to be. Sony through their ps3 & bravia TV’s made consumers aware of HD and more importantly “true HD 1080p”. Therefor the format associated with sony was always going to win because people knew they were buying into the TRUE HD format.


93

+ cxplorer on February 18th, 2008 at 4:40 pm said:

I knew it from the start that Blue Ray was the future!!Man I am glad to own the best console system in the universe.We just need in-game xmb now,loll.


94

+ ftwrthtx on February 18th, 2008 at 4:43 pm said:

Nice to hear!

Send me some tix to GDC please!
I’m in Sacramento


95

+ Keysersoze10033 on February 18th, 2008 at 4:51 pm said:

I’m glad I chose the right format, I have over 80 Blu-ray movies and I’m feeling secure about my purchase :).


96

+ TwoBlack4America on February 18th, 2008 at 4:52 pm said:

Alot of us PS3 users have paid attention to this,and all we really need to say is “VICTORY!!”. By the way, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to post that IGN gave GOW:Chains of Olympus a 9.4 rating in its review. That game is bad-ass, no doubt about it.


97

+ orbio234 on February 18th, 2008 at 4:59 pm said:

it always was hard for me to have to give up my betamax vcr as the picture was superior ..much superior….. to the other…..tosiba by announcing they will no longer produce hd will be a signal that you cannot win them all as sony learned years ago…as sony switched to vhs i await tosiba switching to blu ray..when i watch a medical show on tv and always notice that it is a monitor from sony they use as it is imperative that the screen is the best for capturing a patients exam results…sony to me is more than just for profit company though it is important they have always given the consumer top notch products…it was easy for me to go to blu ray early in the cycle. sony never lose your mission for producing the best and never stop believing that consumedrs prefer the best even to the point of being willing to pay the higher price point


98

+ StrangeAttractor on February 18th, 2008 at 5:18 pm said:

> For those of you who have seen their PS3 as the hub of their home entertainment center

Well, I certainly don’t, it’s a games console and a BluRay player, that’s it. When my PS3 can play h264 video with dolby surround sound in mkv containers streamed from my storage server over SMB, it may replace my Media Center PC, but at the moment the restrictions on video,audio and container formats make it useless as a ‘entertainment center hub’


99

+ Vassago on February 18th, 2008 at 5:23 pm said:

orbio234 youre soooo right, nice speech budy :)


100

+ jackrabbit75 on February 18th, 2008 at 5:40 pm said:

So now comes the ultimate blow to Microsoft. Having to succumb to the victor of this long drawn out format war, and build an add-on for the 360 that supports the movie format of their rival enemy. I scoff at M$. How degrading that must make them feel… and that’s not even including the untold amounts of money that they spent on creating an HD DVD adapter. I do feel sorry for all those poor 360 fanboys that dropped the cash on it as well (wait… no I don’t). Big points for Sony for sticking by their guns and coming out on top. I was hoping from the beginning that this would not end up as another Beta fiasco. Cheers, Sony!!!


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