Sony PlayStation 3
- Great graphics, Included Blu-Ray Drive, Enjoyable games
- Menu unintuitive in places, Cost
While it will take a swipe at your bank balance, Sony's Playstation 3 is definitely a powerful machine. Offering incredible graphics and the added bonus of a Blu-Ray drive, it is a great console to complete your high definition lounge room setup.
Price$ 999.00 (AUD)
Let the games begin
Internet connectivity and high-definition movie playback aside, consoles are all about the games. And massive exclusive franchises such as Halo (Xbox), Metal Gear Solid (PlayStation), and Zelda (Nintendo) promote gamers' allegiance to a single console. Whether a PlayStation 3 launch title such as Resistance: Fall of Man becomes such a classic remains to be seen. But the PS3 games I've played so far have been ridiculously fun. Bearing in mind that I can't test the multiplayer or online functionality until the PS3 officially launches, here are some early thoughts:
NBA 07: This addictive basketball game runs in 1080p resolution at an incredibly smooth 60 frames per second. The players' movements are responsive and fluid; the digital Shaq looks like a sweaty (albeit slightly plastic) version of the in-the-flesh Shaq; and the courts seem almost photo-realistic. It's a better game all around than the PS2 version, though regrettably there still isn't any commentary. Load times were pretty slow (about 15 to 20 seconds) to begin with -- but once the game automatically copied information to the PS3's hard disk, times improved dramatically.
Resistance: Fall of Man: This first-person shooter is my favorite PS3 game so far. Levels feel expansive and atmospheric (especially the set pieces), but the graphics, while top-notch, fall somewhere between what a PS2 game and a PS3 game should look like -- particularly with regard to the textures of the bad guys. The game plays at a solid 30 fps and supports 720p resolution. Our friends over at GamePro have posted a full review and screenshots.
Genji: Days of the Blade: This was my least favorite title even though I'm a fan of slash-/beat-'em-ups. Load times improved once oft-used game data got automatically copied to the hard disk, graphics looked superb, and being able to switch characters instantly or to embark on a matrixlike slow-motion killing spree in midfight was great. Nevertheless, the gameplay as a whole felt a little tired, as though I'd played the same game too many times before.
Here's a list of all 21 games available at the launch of the PlayStation 3:
- Blazing Angels Squadrons of WWII
- Call of Duty 3
- EA Sports Fight Night Round 3
- The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
- Full Auto 2: Battlelines
- Genji: Days of the Blade
- Madden NFL 07
- Marvel: Ultimate Alliance
- Mobile Suit Gundam: Crossfire
- NBA 07
- NBA 2K7
- Need For Speed Carbon
- NHL 2K7
- Resistance: Fall of Man
- Ridge Racer 7
- Sonic the Hedgehog
- Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07
- Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas
- Tony Hawk's Project 8
- Untold Legends Dark Kingdom
Wikipedia provides an unconfirmed list of upcoming titles and games in development for the PS3.
The PlayStation 3 is backward-compatible with most PlayStation 1 and 2 games, but to hedge your bets you might want to buy the optional US$15 Memory Card Adaptor, which allows you to transfer saved game information from PS1/PS2 memory cards to the PS3's hard disk. Even then, early reports indicate that various problems have plagued a bunch of games. Tekken 5, for instance, is said to lose background music on the PS3.
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First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
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