Guerrilla Games laughs at those developers who believe the PlayStation 3 is difficult to develop for. The Killzone 2 creators have brushed off such complaints, going so far as to say that the PS3 is easier to get to grips with. You don't hear that one often.
"I think a lot of those stories that you hear about it being 'so difficult' are coming from developers who are native to other consoles and then start working on PS3, because it is very different," explains managing director Hermen Hulst. "But like us, if you are native to PlayStation, our tech director doesn't say it's particularly difficult. It's specific, but it's not difficult like PS2 was difficult – PS2 was a difficult [machine] to crack, but PS3 didn't take us a long time to get up and running."
Development director Arjan Brussee added his belief that the PS3 was an easier platform: "I actually think PS3 is a simpler architecture than some of the other consoles; you just have to have a certain mindset on how to address it. I think the Cell-based processor with the SPUs and the super high speed DSPs that you can throw all your calculation tasks at gives us a model that's way easier to program for, even for junior programmers, than the general purpose multi-core type of architecture, which the PC and Xbox 360 have. ... On the other platforms, you can have one processor dealing with AI and another processor dealing with rendering and another with game code, etc. And the synchronization of all that is so hard that it's a huge complex issue to solve and get stable."
If you can understand a word of that, you're a better man than me.
This whole "PS3 is hard/easy to develop for" argument has gone on for quite some time. It's quite clear that it's a very personal thing and some studios will have an easier time with certain consoles, especially if they're Guerrilla and haven't even made a game for the other machines. That's not going to stop the debate, though. The console wars pay no heed to logic.