It has been said that necessity is the mother of all invention, and for all intended purposes that ranks as one of the truest phrases that you’ll likely ever encounter. The remarkable thing about it all is that it has a tendency to transcend mere mortals such as us. Yes, even Japanese multinational conglomerates such as Sony are not immune to the concept. That my friends, is why it was not entirely surprising, yet no less pleasing to hear that the sleeping giant that spawned both the PlayStation and PlayStation 2 finally took a good look around, and decided to take the steps necessary to ensure that the PS3 actually has a fighting chance at a future.
No, I’m not talking about the series of price cuts on the consumer end — although that’s certainly the best place to start. What I’m commenting on is Sony’s move to make its development kits more affordable for all. As Gamespot pointed out the other day, the price cut amounts to nearly a 50% reduction of what the kits formerly went for. Although still not exactly pocket change at $10,250 USD a pop, this at least gives the smaller developers a much-needed break, and makes the entry point for would be developers for the PS3 a little easier to reach.
This of course, comes with news that Sony is also hard at work getting the tools that would make development for the PS3 easier in the first place, into the hands of developers — in the form of new features, debugging tools, and better support for applications that are already being used (ProDG and SN tool suite).
Some might say that this all comes a little too late, as the Wii and 360 are enjoying a healthy lead due to Sony’s resistance to do this all from the start. To them, I simply say better late then never, and point to the first sentence of this news article. If the PS3 follows its current path to fruition, things should be looking very nice for Sony fans in the near future. As I look at the Xbox 360 and the slew of games that it currently has and compare them with the PS3’s library, I have to feel that it’s just a damn shame that the future is not now. Sure, the PS3 has some great titles to offer, but think about what could’ve been, had Sony taken these steps much sooner.