Yesterday, I wrote about the exciting times of the PSP, what with the solid base of good titles and the significant efforts of the homebrew community. Today, you can add one more to the list of reasons to pick up the scratch-prone little fucker: Sony has announced a price drop, effectively immediately. The PSP now retails for $169.99 USD. I can’t count that high, but my sources tell me that this is approximately forty bucks more than the DS, and thirty bucks less than it used to was. Once you get over about sixty dollars, it all loses meaning to me. Once the water’s over your head, it doesn’t matter how deep it is, right?
Game Politics writer Dennis McCauley occasionally contributes a column to Joystiq called "The Political Game." In the most recent installment he considers the recent banning of advertisements for M-rated games on rolling billboards (aka "public transit") in Boston and Portland, OR. McCauley makes some excellent points, adopting a victim stance with reason. Here’s a choice quote: "Why then are games singled out? Why is it okay for HBO to place a huge advertisement for the final episodes of The Sopranos on buses in Boston and Portland while the M-rated video game based on the hit show would be banned from such advertising?" Are the differences in the media of television and gaming substantial enough to justify this distinction?
In other news to make the grin slide from your face, the staff at radio station KDND-FM — the ones who held the "Hold Your Wee for a Wii" contest in which one Jennifer Strange died of water intoxication — have been cleared of criminal behavior by the district attorney’s office. Their behavior may have been stupid, but wasn’t bad enough to warrant prosecution. I think this is what we call a human interest story. Did I do it right? (I have a pet theory: Ms. Strange isn’t actually dead. She has either been transported to 1602, or exists now entirely on the astral plane.)
Funcom’s forthcoming MMO, Age of Conan, has now entered a closed beta stage. Everything I’ve seen about the game looks deliciously fun; none of your pansy, evolved Dungeons and Dragons — no, this is the sort of thing to make Robert E. Howard proud or maybe frightened. Robert E. Lee, too. Shacknews has some info, I swear. The beta phase is slated to last up until the game’s release on October 30 of this year.
The upcoming downloadable content for Gears of War, which includes bug fixes and a new game type called "Annex," will be free, according to Epic vice-president Mark Rein. He should know. So, it’s basically a new multiplayer game type that you’re getting for free, since no one in their right mind would charge for bug fixes. I’m imagining this "Annex" scenario will involve borrowing land from natives in the name of the king. Just for a little while.