Features// SPOnG's Review of the Year 2011: July

Posted 2 Jan 2012 11:33 by
“If you look at the average Home user, they are the most hardcore gamer on the PS3. They buy more games than the average PS3 user, they play more games than the average PS3 user. They also watch more movies than the average PS3 user, who is already a highly self-selective consumer.

"We're talking about rabid consumers of media and hardcore gamers. That's who these people are."

Rabid? Apparently that’s a good thing.

Not according to the mainstream media. This time around it was Mr Murdoch’s The Sun ‘newspaper’ that decided to relate gaming to a teenager’s death.

Neither the PlayStation nor the Wii were to blame for the death of 13 year-old Anna-Lee Kehoe. This time, the Xbox 360 was up in the court of public opinion, presiding judge: a newspaper whose sister Sunday paper, The News of the World was to be closed later in the year due phone hacking scandal.

The Sun (along with The Daily Star, The Daily Mail and [i]The Daily Mirror it must be said) lead with, “Anna-Lee, 13, dies as she plays Xbox”.

The actual story, as laid out by the local newspaper The Bridport News was that:

“It is believed the teenager, who suffered from asthma, died of a heart attack. She had been playing on her Xbox at her home in Queens Road, Bridport, on Friday and had not even had a sniffle, her dad Tony said.

“The doctors told us it was the asthma that caused the heart attack. It happened Friday night but she actually passed on Saturday afternoon."

In other media-related news, we also had to run a story that - despite the competition for readers - is never the kind of thing we’re happy run:

“Future Publishing to Cut 10% of UK staff”

The story stated that, “An internal memo to staff from Future Publishing's UK CEO Mark Wood has broken the news to staff.

“The round of redundancies will commence on a voluntary basis. If this does not reach the target number of people with no jobs, enforced layoffs will be used.

“Not only are staff going but the Wood memo to staff also states that Future is ‘reviewing the future of some titles.’”

On the gaming front though, Microsoft was starting to make more of Kinect for that wondrous hardcore demographic. Having 'teased head-tracking for Forza 4' in June, it laid out the collector's edition of the much anticipated title.

As we walk slowly out of July, however, we also have to note that hacking was still very much in the minds of the platform holders.

So much so that Dennis Durkin, COO and CFO of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business pointed out that in terms of the PSN hack:

“It’s bad for the industry that this has happened to Sony. It’s very, very bad. It’s very damaging. So we don’t wish that upon anybody and you've seen we’ve been actually pretty quiet on the subject because we don’t want to appear to even be looking to be taking advantage of somebody else’s situation like that. That’s just not in our DNA."

Oh, really?

He then took things in a political slant, “Like in society, you can’t always protect everything. There are people who are going to want to disrupt things and you can't always perfectly protect against every scenario, but we’re going to make sure we do everything to we can to be sure we’re as secure as we possibly can be."

Image via GamingBolt
Image via GamingBolt
I’m not entirely sure how the “Like in society, you can’t always protect everything...” pans out when it comes to an online system which can be protected. But we’ll leave that to Mr D’s personal take on sociology and hope that no one ever lets him get near actual systems.

Let’s farewell July with Playstation 4 ‘news’. Bear this quote in mind for 2012:

“Industry sources (at a top developer) who wished not to be quoted that Sony is looking to unveil a PlayStation 4 sometime next year as well."

You can see more about July’s gaming news here by the way.
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