Microsoft’s European VP for interactive entertainment, Chris Lewis, has said the battle between the PS3 and 360 in the US is over, with the company now focusing its attention on Europe

When asked if the battle between the PS3 and the 360 was now decided in the US, Lewis said Microsoft has “done the job we need to in North America”, and that the company would focus more effort on increasing the 360’s lead over the PS3 in Europe.

Lewis, speaking in an interview with 360 magazine, also admitted that Microsoft had made mistakes in its previous approach to the European videogame market, saying that a single marketing strategy couldn’t be applied to the whole continent.

“In the sunnier parts of Europe we did have relatively less success”

“It’s a very textured region,” said Lewis. “You’ve got places like the UK and the Nordic countries…where we’ve been able to apply our more North American approach to those markets with genuine success.”

“In the sunnier parts of Europe we did have relatively less success up until the last 12 months where I think we have better understood the need to go to those markets with more appropriate content,” he added.

tvcalibration002tvcalibration009For most of this month, one of the top 10 ranked Community Games on Major Nelson’s list hasn’t been a game at all, the TV Calibration app is a 200 point ($2.50) tool loaded with plenty of test patterns to make sure your video setup is configured perfectly. There’s also a free trial, so we loaded it up and can say it does exactly what it says it does. Most games have at least some PQ optimization helpers, but it’s unlikely you’ll be able to get this detailed information about pixel mapping and test color patterns with a Gears of War disc, and hey, you gotta make sure those Netflix streams look their best on your HDTV. Other calibration tools may have a few more tests and work on more than one device, but for the price it seems to be a good value. Check out the gallery to see a few of the patterns included, or download it from the marketplace and give it a try.

ps3_consoles1killzone2picI found this article at www.n4g.com/ps3 and i thought it was very truthful although some would disagree. Either way i still have all 3 consoles and i find myself only playing my PlayStation 3.

The Xbox 360 is currently second place in the console wars race. Microsoft, however, seems more concern about the Playstation 3 than the leading Nintendo Wii. They even went so far to discredit the Nintendo Wii

The Xbox 360 had a year head start on the Playstation 3. As a result on being on the market earlier, Microsoft was able to get a first-mover advantage and got a nice lead before the Playstation 3 launched.

If Sony didn’t delay the Playstation 3, the situation would have been a whole lot different. Sony’s high-definition video game system would have outsold the Xbox 360 (even with the higher price tag) based on hype alone. Not to mention that many of the games the Xbox 360 is getting might have become Playstation 3 exclusives.

In reality, the Playstation 3 is selling about even with the Xbox 360 if you don’t account for the year head start (even more in Europe). Furthermore, the Playstation 3 cost a lot more and had to face stiffer competition than the Xbox 360 did when it launched. As much as Microsoft like to brag about beating Sony, the difference between the two isn’t all that great if you take in the context of the situation.

Grand Scheme

The Xbox 360 is outselling the Playstation 3 handily. However, Sony has more than one video game system. The PSP is selling solidly while the Playstation 2 is maintaining a steady pace. Therefore, Sony actually has a bigger market share than Microsoft. So while Microsoft only likes to concentrate on winning the battle against the Playstation 3, they lack the punch to compete against Sony (and Nintendo) in the grand scheme of the gaming industry.

First-Party Support

Microsoft is growing heavily reliant on third-party support. They recently shut down Ensemble Studios (Halo Wars), let Bungie (Halo 3) go independent and did not attempt to buy Bioware (Mass Effect). Since third-party gaming companies can switch alliances at any time, Microsoft is walking a tight rope.

Sony, on the other hand, is quietly building up the biggest first-part development core in the gaming industry. Their studios span all three major regions (Japan, North America and Europe) and feature tremendous talent. First-party Playstation 3 games are gaining praise and popularity.

With more third-party opting to release multiplatform games, exclusive games on the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 may ultimately determined the battle between the two high-definition systems. With less fire power, Microsoft should definitely be concern about Sony.

Free Online

Finally, Xbox Live paid subscriptions are one of the biggest revenue streams on the Xbox 360. The Playstation 3 offers free online play over the Playstation Network. Since the differences between the two networks are superficial, Microsoft should fear for their pockets if the Playstation 3 ever caught up to the Xbox 360 in sales. Not only will they lose market share but they will also lose out on extra revenue since many people will rather pay online for free than pay for it.

The Xbox 360 is only dominating the Playstation 3 in North America. The two systems are just about even in Europe while the Playstation 3 is leading handily in Japan. Because of that and the above factors, Microsoft has every right to be concerned about the Xbox 360 lead over the Playstation 3.

You may or may not have heard about Microsoft’s acquisition of 3DV Systems (makers of the ZCam digital camera), which has been rumored since early February.  For a mere $35 million, Microsoft is planning to use the virtual reality imaging technology, originally developed for defense systems, to power the next evolution in motion-sensitive gaming.

Technology journalist Dean Takahashi was able to demo the ZCam and said it was more accurate than both the EyeToy and the Nintendo Wii.  The major advantage over the Wii is that you don’t have to hold a controller, and you also won’t have to buy stupid peripherals like the steering wheel to make the controls seem more natural.  You could even represent things in the game world by actually holding that object in the real world, like a sword for instance (we all have swords, right?)

It also has an advantage over the EyeToy in that it doesn’t require ambient light to function — the ZCam works perfectly even in a dark room.   It emits its own infrared beams and measures the reflections off of objects, which also makes it more accurate on a 3D plane since it more accurately judges distance.

Of course, the one thing that the EyeToy and the Wii have over the ZCam is that they are both available right now.  As great as the ZCam may end up being, nobody can currently play with it.  Is this going to be applied to the Xbox 360, or will it wait until the next round of consoles and be integrated from the start?  Until Microsoft announces what exactly they’re going to do with this technology, I don’t think Sony or Nintendo have to worry about being dethroned.

Sony has nothing to worry about anything they will always be number 1!!!!

The PlayStation 3 outsold the Wii and Xbox 360 in Japan this week. It also outsold the Nintendo DSi, PSP, DS Lite and PlayStation 2, not something we’ve seen happen too often.

The hardware boost, propelling the PS3 out of its regular fourth place finish, can be chalked up to the release of Yakuza 3 (AKA Ryu Ga Gotoku 3) for the platform which sold 372,000 copies during the week. A bundled version that shipped with a white, dragon-emblazoned PlayStation 3 likely helped move more hardware than normal—enough to outsell the Wii and Xbox 360 combined.

We’ll be interested to see how the newly released Resident Evil 5 affects hardware sales next week, as it will be available on both hi-def console platforms.

The bestselling hardware in Japan for the week of February 22nd to March 1st is…

  • PlayStation 3 – 36,513
  • Nintendo DSi – 35,827
  • PSP – 35,588
  • Wii – 17,876
  • Xbox 360 – 11,795
  • Nintendo DS Lite – 11,774
  • PlayStation 2 – 5,099ps3_consoles