PSP2 pics and motion control wars: 2010 in review - November
31st Dec 2010 | 10:00
The Christmas buying season was in full swing and huge sales were ahead for Sony, Microsoft and, in particular, Activision.
Call of Duty: Black Ops was the success story of the year which laughed in the faces of Treyarch doubters as solid review scores were backed up by record-smashing day-one sales in UK, with 1.4 million flogged in its first 24 hours.
Microsoft was all smiles with a successful Kinect launch, confirming it had sold 2.5 million worldwide after 25 days. So confident is MS in its body-sensing camera bar that it also upped its sales estimates from three to five million units by the year's end.
But Sony wasn't about to sit back and let Kinect steal the limelight, rushing in to 'confirm' that Move had sold 4.1 million worldwide since its September launch. It almost sounded too good to be true. Was it?
Pachter certainly didn't think so, claiming that Move had sold "well below expectations".
Sony was also the bearer of good news for those thinking of grabbing a new PSPgo for Christmas, slashing £65 off its UK asking price, bringing it down to a far more acceptable £159.99. But did it give the console's sales a much-needed kick up the rear? We'll see.
Meanwhile the ongoing trickle of PSP2-related rumours reached fever pitch when the first pictures of what's claimed to be a PSP2 dev unit emerged, sporting many of the much-rumoured features including a front-facing camera, dual analogues and a rear-facing touch panel.
It also dons a PSPgo-style slide-up screen which, according to reports, has already been ditched on a newer as-yet unseen dev unit, and the images show no evidence of a UMD drive suggesting Sony could be planning a continuation of its download-only system despite the less-than-desirable sales of PSPgo.
The 1GHz CPU supposedly crammed in that thing is expected to pump out some serious visuals, but there was no need to wait on Sony for next-gen handheld graphics; id released Rage on iOS which looks awesome on the super sharp 'retina' display of the iPhone 4, really showing off the device's competence as a high-performance games console.
Then Epic emerged to prove there was even more untapped power inside that slim glass sandwich, unveiling its Unreal Engine-powered action RPG Infinity Blade - by far the best-looking handheld game available today.
Elsewhere, the importance of the pre-owned market was reinforced when GameStop said 50 percent of all profits come from the retailer's pre-owned sales business.
Oh, and some game called Gran Turismo 5 was released, but that's no big deal.
Big games for the month included Microsoft's Kinect, GoldenEye 007 on Wii, Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit on all formats, Call of Duty: Black Ops on Xbox, PS3 and PC, Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood on Xbox, PS3 and PC, Donkey Kong Country Returns on Wii and Gran Turismo 5 (hurrah!!) on PS3.