Monday, January 15

The Circle is now Complete.

Impressive. Most impressive.

Today, out of the blue, I finally got the last piece of the ongoing puzzle that is The Sanctum... a shiny, black, Darth Vader-like Sony Playstation 3. I got the console from a different seller, since my previous source had backed out on me. I had to rush a bit to beat any other prospective buyers, but otherwise it was an easy buy at the best price I could get at this point in time for the still-hard-to-find gaming device- 28K, which is about the same amount I paid for the Xbox360.

I lugged the thing home- DAMN it's heavy- and it was out of the box in no time. Looking sleek and shiny with the jet-black casing, the PS3 does indeed look as expensive as it is. On the plus side, it's actually a pretty simple thing to put together, as all of Sony's consoles have been. Installing it is as easy as plugging in the power cord and TV connections, and that's that.

Out of the box, the PS3 can get connected online via a LAN cable, so you can play online (gaming is free) or conduct business at the online Playstation Store (download demos and videos, buy games, etc). But once again the current weird internet situation struck, preventing me from updating the System Firmware (required to get online, apparently). Hopefully I'll be able to remedy that soon. But even without my wanted game and just sitting there beneath the TV, the PS3 just impresses. It's one impressive bit of kit. That much I'll give the thing.

After about an hour of using the thing and getting acquainted, I can give some remarks about it.

The Sixaxis controller ROCKS. No, there's no rumble or vibration function, but the ultra-light, wireless controller otherwise looks like the Dual Shock we've come to know and love. You can connect it to the main unit via USB2 cables in order to charge up the power source. From the controller you can do everything including turning off the system, which is just too cool.

The PS3 buttons are touch-sensitive; no more pressing deep. Just pass your finger over the button to turn it on or off, or to eject a disc. It just feels so... futuristic. The future is here, now! Whooo.

The Blu-Ray disc looks just like a DVD, but supposedly houses many times more storage space- like, up to 50 Gigs. That's a lot of space to put in lots of game. It's supposedly slower than DVD though, but working along with the PS3's Hard Drive should alleviate these concerns.

The packed-in game I got, Fight Night Round 3, initially didn't interest me. I mean, come on... BOXING?? No slick martial arts, no wild characters, no hot babes... nothing but battered guys in trunks punching each others' faces to bloody pulps. I wanted to sell or trade this off at first. But after playing a couple of rounds with Filipino champion Manny Pacquiao, I changed my mind. There was technique and depth to the gameplay, and this would be an awesome 2-player game. So, I guess, it's staying in the PS3 library. Okay, Library-to-be.

I tried some of my old discs. Japanese PS1 and PS2 games play, but as I've read and heard, the graphics are less than perfect with jaggies aplenty. I won't be throwing away my PS2. But still, it's pretty cool to see the PSOne Dead or Alive playing on the PS3. Heh. All-region DVDs play fine, but once again, the region-protected discs are useless... once again, I cannot play my LOTR Extended Version discs... DAAAAAMN.

So, now, I guess, my ride into the Next Generation of Gaming is indeed here. All that's left is a suitable Destination. Virtua Fighter 5, Metal Gear Solid 4, Final Fantasy XIII... The future beckons. See you there!

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