A round-up of the week’s big geeky announcements and anniversaries.
The PlayStation 20th anniversary
It’s twenty years this week since the original Playstation console launched in Japan. UK players wouldn’t be able to get their mitts on it for another nine months, but launching with a range of titles across all genres, the console got a big leg up on the competition almost immediately.
Famously developed after a cancelled collaboration with Nintendo, and a less famous one with Sega, Sony decided to press on with its CD-based console, and after the failed launches of various add-ons (and especially the horror that was the Phillips CD-I), Sony seized an entire portion of the gaming market by presenting the best attempt at 3D graphics yet.
(Yes, that CD-I.)
The console would go on to target a different part of the UK demographic, as this great article from the Guardian this week shows.
ESEA Counter-Strike weekend
If you’re a regular Twitch-watcher (Twitcher?) you’ll no doubt be aware of this weekend’s ESEA tournament, which is showcasing some fine Counter-Strike action. I’ve spent a good deal of yesterday and today so far watching it, despite having never played the game (it’s research for something else I’m working on. I may have said too much.)
That said, it’s quite fun watching the avatars in action, ‘smoking off’ (fnarr) and generally showing some real competitive spirit in trying to win the tournament which is promising almost $100,000 in cash prizes. The tournament ends later today (probably early tomorrow morning given UK-US timezone difference) and it’s worth jumping in for a watch if you’re a CS fan. I’ve yet to see anyone enjoying a game on a SMES console though.
One thing though – I know eSports is a big thing, but I don’t know how they manage to involve such strange commentary on it – it’s all very in-depth and useful, but I don’t know how they manage to make it sound like a game of Monday Night Football sometimes.
While I was rejoicing over the fact that they’ve finally cancelled Two and a Half Men (I do not know a single person who enjoys this programme, so how did it stay on for 12 years?) I noted that the new CSI spin-off has a premiere date set for early March.
I used to love watching all three series of this programme, but one by one they dropped off for various reasons; Grissom leaving, the NY storylines suddenly losing all logic, and David Caruso quickly becoming a parody of himself. This new spin-off features a former medium, a former rapper, a a former eccentric lawyer and a former Dawson. Consider me intrigued. But don’t you think ‘Cyber’ is a bit of a weird name? It sounds like this pilot was conceived in 1994, when words like that were actually used – actually, in an old Sega ad come to think of it.
Oh, and the theme tune will be another Who classic. I’m in – at least for the first couple.