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40GB's loss of backwards compatibility explained

Now that Sony has finally come clean and announced its new 40GB PlayStation 3, it's got some "splaining to do." The biggest issue on most gamer's minds is why Sony decided to cut the backwards compatibility feature that linked the PS3 with the PlayStation consoles that came before it.

SCEE managing director Ray Maguire said Sony will use the money it dedicated towards backwards compatibility to invest in new games or to perhaps lower prices so more gamers can afford to buy a PS3. "It was a big decision, and we know it is a very emotive subject as lots of people think that backwards compatibility is high on the agenda and yet few really use it," he said.

We're not sure how Maguire came to this conclusion, but the PS3's backwards compatibility feature is always one that we've appreciated for a long time. With Sony's commitment to a 10-year life span of its hardware and games still being published for last generation's console, it seems like an odd choice to "cut the cord" at this point.

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21. test

Posted at 2:48PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Sy

22. It would be nice if it was just a little smaller, but they wouldn't do that now, and release an overheating console like some OTHER company. Macrohard

Posted at 2:49PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Ruben

23. I think this is the beginning of the death of the PS2. They see that MS killed off the Xbox when they released the XB360... so they're following suit to force people's attention onto the PS3.

Posted at 2:49PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Spoon!!

24. Well, I won't be getting a 40. There's too many good Star Wars games from the PS2 that I still enjoy.

Posted at 2:54PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Dewy9

25. "Well, I won't be getting a 40. There's too many good Star Wars games from the PS2 that I still enjoy."

Ehhh ... that PS2 won't vanish into thin air once you buy a PS3... It will stil function, you can still play games on it....

Posted at 2:56PM on Oct 5th 2007 by ymmv

26. So... There are not many PS3 games worth playing now, and you can't play thousands of the classic/retro titles... How is this suppose to sell the system?

Posted at 3:04PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Waruwaru

27. How many of you in here own a PS3, and only play ps3 titles on it? 1% I assume.

God of War I and II, Shadow of the Colossus, Gran Turismo, Resident evil 4, Dragonball Budokai Tenkachi and most recently finished Silent Hill 3 and Final Fantasy X again for the 5th and 3rd time respectively. I play more Ps2 games on my Ps3.

Frankly some of your alternatives for playing PS2 games such as buying a separate PS2 console and putting it close to ps3 to play its game, is ridiculous at best. Do not defend a decision that defies logic. Companies should listen to their costumers not the other way around. Sony is punishing everyone and in the short and long term, it only hurts them. I too want to see people buying PS3 but you cannot force them to do so when there are better choices out there and you constantly make the situation more and more difficult for average gamers.

Posted at 3:09PM on Oct 5th 2007 by john

28. For the majority it does seem that they want BC but never really use it. The only game I'm going to buy that needs BC on my PS3 is God of War 2, however I decided to wait until it hits $20 to buy it.

I'm sure PS1 titles will still work since that has been completely software for a long time. I don't think the PSP has PS1 chips inside and it works fine.

I'm sure Sony is working on a way to emulate the GS but it is not ready yet so for now there is no PS2 BC on the 40GB system. The move cuts a lot of cost in manufacturing the mainboard since a lot of tracers are not needed anymore. I never really understood why the PS3 had 4 USB ports on the front. It should have had 2 on the front and 2 in back.

In the US you're going to get the 40GB at $399 and the 80GB at $499 for Christmas. One will be for people that want a cheap PS3 to play PS3 games and the other will be for the hardcore gamer that wants BC.

Posted at 3:10PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Iridium

29. Probably, they want to keep people with 60GB ps3's happy. It's a sort of justification. "Look, I payed more for this PS3 and I have backwards compatibility, 2 extra usbs and a memory card reader.", one can say. Other than that, we all know 2 usb ports (would cost like, erm, 2 dollars at the very most to produce, esp. in the order of millions), a 20GB storage difference (5 -10dollars??), memory card reader (5-10??) would not justify an extra 100euros (140 dollars). It is like buying cars, they don't have electrically operated windows in the 10000usd model but the 14000usd model with bigger engine. They could have added the functionality to 10000usd model but they don't. Not that I am fan of this marketing method, but I guess they felt they needed to show some justification.

Posted at 3:15PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Emrah

30. @ 29

"For the majority it does seem that they want BC but never really use it. The only game I'm going to buy that needs BC on my PS3 is God of War 2, however I decided to wait until it hits $20 to buy it."

God of war II is already 20$, at least in Canada. Besides, please stop assuming that people don't play Ps2 games on their Ps3s. do you have a valid source for this claim? I have 4 friends who have PS3 and ALL OF THEM play more Ps2 games that the original PS3 titles. Even during the online games such as Warhawk people complain and say the same.

Bottom-line, a terrible decision which will cost Sony this charismas.

Posted at 3:16PM on Oct 5th 2007 by john

31. @ 1

I agree, I play Mortal Kombat Trilogy (ps1 game)and it works fine. MK2 is the best it gets online which is weak. Sony needs MKT online and it would sell like madness. Anyway 40gig ps3 i guess thats cool for people that are worried about another $100...

Posted at 3:18PM on Oct 5th 2007 by NoRRODhere

32. Hey john, check the metacritic list of games that are out for the PS3, there are like 20+ titles that score 8 or higher.

Maybe on a site like this half of the people owning a PS3 will play PS2 games on it as well. In the big consumer world I doubt it's even 5%.

Posted at 3:21PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Egster

33. For people who didn't jump on board early...screw you!

I'm glad their cutting the cord. Their right. Most people don't give a shit about BC. Once I get a new system, I don't bother with the older system. And if I do, I usually have the original console.

So now...all you internet babies, go ahead a cry all you want. If you really cared about BC you would go out and get one now.

I have a 20GB PS3 that is now a 160GB PS3 and it has the Emotion Engine built in. I'm good to go.

Posted at 3:26PM on Oct 5th 2007 by FrankTheCrank

34. People here are idiotic.

Everyone mentions the same old shit:
'Besides Warhawk, HS and Resistance, what else should I play?' Well, there is Motorstorm, Sigma, F1. But....

Well look here you daft twonks:

First party games aren't the only games on the bloody system. There are so many fantastic upcoming exclusives for the PS3 as well.

Posted at 3:26PM on Oct 5th 2007 by -viper-

35. i think its a bad idea. but with the slim fit ps2's only being $99, pick one of those up for BC.

i kind of agree, us who NEED BC for our "games that last forever" (like an annual playthrough of xenogears, silent hill 2, the freakin metal gear solids!, and more) are always going to be a niche market in north america.

Posted at 3:38PM on Oct 5th 2007 by daniel.

36. Possibility of a firmware update for software emulation,anyone?

Posted at 3:42PM on Oct 5th 2007 by FM

37. @5 John
Uhh. howbout Motorstorm, Ninja Gaiden Sigma, the Darkness....
BUT BESIDES that.. one of my primary reasons for a PS3 WAS BC.

Posted at 3:43PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Otsego_Undead

38. @ 36, or for that SAME 99bucks...pick up a 60GB PS3

Posted at 3:43PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Justin

39. #5 how bout Motorstorm it only sold 1 million copies

And once again sony shoots itself in the foot this gen. Welcome to the 40 gig Blu-ray player. Oh yeah itll be a ps3 also, and dont forget in Europe they are Fire saling the 60 gigs and no longer selling those... Is this foreshadowing for america????

bye bye back compat

Posted at 3:46PM on Oct 5th 2007 by ShaggyB

40. There are a lot of people that will still want to play PS2 games on their PS3 )I'm playing MGS3 on my 60 GB PS3 now). I don't want to have to have an extra console connected for when I want to play a PS2 game. More importantly, PS2 games look like crap on an HD TV when played with a PS2. They look better played with the PS3 because it does both upscaling and smoothing.

I really hope that Sony continues to sell a model with BC.

Posted at 3:47PM on Oct 5th 2007 by Bogatron

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