Liveblog: Sony’s E3 2013 PlayStation press conference

Sony showed us what’s inside the box. Now it’s time to see the box.

By John Teti • June 10, 2013


Welcome to The Gameological Society’s liveblog of Sony’s E3 2013 press conference, which begins at 6:00 p.m. Pacific time. Sony executives have surely enjoyed the past three weeks as the Xbox One has taken its licks from legions of wary players online. But Sony may also have viewed the feeding frenzy with some foreboding, as the PlayStation 4 might very well have its own restrictions on used games, and its own requirements for the console to “phone home.” If Sony reveals that its plans are similar to Microsoft’s, then we may witness a great deal of hand-wringing indeed among the fans who have to live in this brave new world.

Most notably, this event is practically guaranteed to mark the public’s first look at the actual PlayStation 4—Sony’s “unveiling” in February only showed us the controller. There are those who say it doesn’t matter what the new consoles look like, and to them I say poppycock. Our society is not yet so far “in the cloud” that industrial design has ceased to matter. I’m personally hoping that Sony reveals a machine that flows with elegance as a contrast to the monolithic brutality of the Xbox One’s design (a design I happen to like, for what that’s worth).

The liveblog is above, as is streaming video of the event, courtesy of Twitch. You can also watch the press conference live at Please say your piece in the liveblog’s comments—the commentary is moderated, but we’ll try to publish as many smart/funny/insightful remarks as our clicking fingers allow.

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49 Responses to “Liveblog: Sony’s E3 2013 PlayStation press conference”

  1. ferrarimanf355 says:

    Is Spike TV still showing E3 coverage?

  2. Liebheart says:

    Damn! I missed the red carpet. I’m seeing some easy targets for Joan Rivers.

  3. Spacemonkey Mafia says:

    I can honestly say I like the case design for both the XBOX One and the PS4.
       The former looks like the device on which I’d watch the original home release of Blade Runner, and the latter looks like one of the skyscrapers in the movie.

    • Citric says:

      The PS4 looks like a CD player in an early ’00s sci-fi movie, one of the ones where all of the couches and carpets were white in spite of it being a terrible idea.

      • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

        Almost all robot uprisings can be traced back to the vacuum bots who had to keep those spaces dirt-free.

    • Toparaman says:

      I think the PS4 has a design that will age well, in the sense that it’s a distinctive design like the NES or the SNES.

  4. mobvok says:

    My working assumption about Sony allowing used games is that they decided all they had to do was be patient and wait for the industry to become primarily digital, and then they’ve neatly avoided all the drama Microsoft dove head first into. It sounds like the bonuses they’re adding to Playstation Plus was a way to lure people into that.

    • Enkidum says:

      I’m disappointed by the mandatory for multiplayer thing, one leaf from Microsoft’s book I wish they hadn’t taken. I have an account, it’s a fantastic deal, but I resent it being obligatory.

      Then again, I pretty much never play online games, so… there’s that.

    • flayedsavior says:

      Yeah, I’m a little disappointed Sony went that route.  However, I just dabbled in PS+(got a 3 month sub for the deal they had on Borderlands 1/2), and can see that it easily pays for itself.  So I guess it’s a wash.  Big win for Sony tonight.  

    • RidleyFGJ says:

      This may have just wrapped up the voting for video clip of the year.

    • Effigy_Power says:

      That’s genuinely funny. God, I am being all genuine suddenly. Gross.

    • Fluka says:

      Aww, he even says thanks!

    • Fluka says:

      Also, I love how transparently they’re basically saying “Haaah, fuck you Xbox!”

      • Effigy_Power says:

        That was fun. I do wonder how much content of the conference was altered directly following the XBone one and the reactions to it…
        In any case, corporate throwdown was fun to watch.

        • George_Liquor says:

          I’d love to think that the script for the PS4 announcement was hastily rewritten following the Xbone’s:

          The PS4 will^NOT^have to be plugged into the Internet all the time.
          No way in Hell the PS4’s gonna let you play used games. 
          This sucker’s only gonna cost $799 $699 $599 $499 $399!

  5. Citric says:

    I just remembered, didn’t Sony do the exact same thing in 1994? They had a competitor full of hubris and poor decision making, and then they went on the stage and announced their price was $100 less.

    • RidleyFGJ says:

      You remember well; the infamous “$299” moment more or less killed any hope of the Saturn outside of Japan.

    • John Teti says:

      Yup, it was 1995, at the first E3.

    • Spacemonkey Mafia says:

      I know this wasn’t E3 directly, but it was the PS3’s $500/$600 price tag, along with Ken Kutaragi getting wistful about people working more hours to afford one that originally compelled me to get an XBox 360.  It took the red-ring and a price drop to get me to pick up a Playstation.
         Were I not broke from the heart-swelling joy of having a loving family, I’d likely pick up a PS4.
         I find these dynastic feuds between console manufacturers so fascinating.  Some underdog (multi-billion dollar, corporate-style underdog) will usurp a popular console’s place in a new generation, only to become afflicted with all the poor decision making that stems from hubristic, inbred thinking.
         Stumble, fall, clamber up again, ad infinitum.
         And it looks like the cycle will perpetuate until all consoles have gone the way of the yellowed basement relics you see bagged with a Happy Meal toy on the shelf of a St. Vincent De Paul’s and we’re all playing games on some synthetic membrane stretched across our eyeballs.      

  6. Effigy_Power says:

    Mkay, after letting this admittedly fun thing settling down a bit, I am a bit more reserved.
    The games were great. There was a distinct lack of floppy boobs, close to no misogyny, some Steampunk and precious little shooting. Watchdogs appears to look as good as it was promised. AC4 looks fun. The Indie segment was great. And of course the price is a huge factor.

    The used games/always on thing, as big a slap in the face to XBone as it is, and rightfully so, got a bit more applause than it deserved. I think it’s a pretty prominent position that what Microsoft is trying to pull is a bad thing, so for Sony not to do those bad things doesn’t make them Saints.
    “We are not going to screw everything you love” is a nice statement and well received, but it’s a weak statement by itself.
    If Amazon told you that they are not coming to take away your books if you don’t log in regularly and that they really belong to you after all anyways and the books do not have cameras that watch you touch yourself. You’d be glad that they don’t do it, but you wouldn’t send them a fruit basket.

    That really is the only issue I had with this press conference. It was fun, it didn’t smush 12 second teasers in between awkward speeches like XBone did. The battle seems long before anyone is playing theirs, lest something unknown and awful comes around late in the game.

    • Enkidum says:


    • DrKumAndGo says:

      I don’t think anyone’s, like, super-thrilled that Sony will continue to let you own your games. But I’m personally very happy that a big industry competitor is visibly and vocally calling Microsoft out on its anti-consumer bullshit.

      • Effigy_Power says:

        I totally agree with that, but I think it’s worth pointing out that lack of malice is not a virtue in itself.

    • Jon Benson says:

      Too true. I think the strong positive response came from relief above all else.

    • Girard says:

      The video game industry has set the bar so low for conduct that even the most basic perfunctory decency warrants applause, I guess.

      “Congratulations on not making rape jokes at the expense of your female presenters! You’re the BEST!”

      • Fyodor Douchetoevsky says:

        Yup. It’s like those guys who are like “yeah, i make gay jokes but i don’t actually beat up gay people” like not being an absolutely evil person is worthy of praise. 

        Here’s a pretty relevant thing from feminist blog shit that i’m totally not co-opting to talk about fucking goddamn videogame corporations. Wait…

    • Simon Jones says:

       You say steampunk as though it’s a positive thing .

      • Effigy_Power says:

        Can be, can be. That 1886 game or whatever it was called did look pretty appealing.

  7. evanwaters says:

    So Sony won this generation, right? That was pretty brutal.

    • Ted Kindig says:

      Not to mention Nintendo are the only ones who still have free online. I may get a PS4 some day, but for now I plan to continue my Nintendo/PC Combo of Maximum Value.

    • Definitely Nintendo comes in second, still a bummer for them after winning the last round (and they did win) but this is the first time Microsoft will find themselves looking up at both companies instead of just one.

      • Dwigt says:

        They had to at the time of the GameCube. It sold better than the Xbox in Japan but they never got the advantage in the US and Europe.

  8. Lawrence Allen says:

    After reading coverage of both press conferences, I am now not only definitely going to be buying a PS4 (it seems the only choice at this point), but am also actively rooting for the Xbox one to fail. There was a weirdly self-congratulatory tone to much of what Microsoft has been doing with the Xbox one (acting as if a voice activated TV was a revolutionary development instead of a slightly interesting convenience with some creepy trade offs, the Call of Duty Ghosts coverage that mostly seemed centered around how shitty the last Call of Duty games were), that I found absolutely infuriating. Sony’s decision not to be egregiously evil is obviously a case of meeting certain bare minimums (“hey, we are acknowledging that you can do what you want with things you own, a basic underpinning of western societies since before the birth of Christ!”), but at least they acknowledged this and even made a joke of it with their “How to lend a PS4 game” video.

    • George_Liquor says:

      I gots no love for MS, especially after today, but I don’t want to see the game console market collapse to a single company. I honestly think the Wii U will be Nintendo’s last home console. They don’t have the hardware, capital or 3rd party support to stay competitive anymore.

  9. Lawrence Allen says:

    It’s possible Microsoft will change their minds about the more egregious features after the shellacking Sony just gave them. It’s also conceivable that the lack of used games will make the Xbox one so attractive to publishers that the PS4 will have difficulty attracting new releases (conceivable, but probably unlikely). Sony certainly won the night though. 

    • evanwaters says:

       Developers won’t say no to a large customer base, DRM or no.

      • Lawrence Allen says:

        Probably true, especially if all of the people on twitter promising to reserve a ps4 right away are indicative of actual demand for the thing. Still, if Microsoft is especially generous in supporting developers and some of the direr claims about exactly how much used games hurt developer revenues are true, this might be enough to push some studios to become Xbox one exclusive. This is all fairly ungrounded speculation, of course.

  10. Girard says:

    So, uh, Kingdom Hearts 3 sure as HELL better let me fly an X-Wing with Goofy and Spider-Man. Jes’ sayin’.

    • rvb1023 says:

       You know, I have always disliked Kingdom Hearts passionately but it did slip my mind that this is a thing that can happen now.

      Instead I will nerdgasm over another 2 minutes or so of Versus XI – I mean XV footage – with still no confirmed release date. I still can’t believe SE made a trailer that got me hyped about a Final Fantasy game again.

  11. Toparaman says:

    I didn’t find anything particularly wrong with this conference, but I have to say, I didn’t see any games that couldn’t be done on the PS3.  I guess that will change over time though.

    Funnily enough, my favorite game shown was Kingdom Hearts 3.  And I haven’t even played a KH game.  But what little was shown looked colorful and vibrant.  Knack did too, but I don’t like that game’s artstyle, whereas KH has fucking Disney characters.

  12. evanwaters says:

    In retrospect, I think the real difference maker is that PS4 has Octodad. 

  13. Baramos x says:

    I look forward to the new gen for entirely different reasons–I didn’t get a PS3 until two years ago. I am looking forward to the fairly heavy discounts and deals forthcoming in the next couple of years on PS3 games.