The long awaited PlayStation Home was finally released after a full year of Beta testing on December 11, 2008. Being the admitted Sony fanboy that I am, you can bet I was on the scene the second it was released.
Lets break this down, Home did not show up on my XMB till about 7:00pm EST. I was not able to login to Home till about 1:30am . Stress testing taunts me.
Brief overview of the character customization: many facial structure modifications and variables, few everything else. I can deal with that, just lemme in already!
The first place they show you is, of course, your apartment. You live in a one room studio apartment, with an amazing overlook of the ocean. This really showcases the PlayStation’s power. Fiddling around with the apartment a little bit, It’s pretty much its own furniture physics game. There are of course limitations to what you can do, but grab a friend and you can have a lot of fun in here.
The main attraction (at least in my eyes) in Home is the social experience, I was pretty hyped to leave my apartment to head to the Central Square and start meeting other PlayStation fans.
I was disappointed.
Home is overrun with immature, perverted, children. The open mic chat adds, and takes away from the experience. We had people shouting obscenities, as well as saying “Do the Running Man.” over and over. For the ones that are unfortunate enough to know what the Running Man is, it’s a dance similar to the Moon Walk that is a huge fad in Home.
Ok, the social aspect is kind of a disappointment, how about the content? This is the first week so I’m not expecting too much. Lets go visit the Bowling Alley/Arcade first, I love me some games.
Bowling in Home is rather in depth, you can have four people to one game, and the bowling begins! When it is your turn, you choose your standing point, choose which angle you want, then you choose how you want to curve the ball. This is a very simple, and quite an addictive bowling game, especially for the price (free!).
Travelling down a little ways to the arcade. Lets see here, we have 3 arcade machines. Echochrome (a small variation of the full game), Ice Breaker (a BreakOut clone), and some carriage game that’s kind of lame. Lets play! What? Only one person can be on a machine at a time? Guess I have to wait it out.
Echochrome is first. There are three levels each designed differently. The objective of each level is to get to the shadow by placing hole and springs around the level. Sounds easy enough, at least until the robots start showing up. You gotta place your holes and springs strategically to move yourself and the robots around the level, whenever you walk into a shadow, all the robots on the screen turn to shadows and you may proceed to collect them. Overall it is a pretty addicting game.
Ice Breaker, Break out… need I explain further?
All we got left to visit is the Mall, and the Movie Theatre now. The mall is just that.. a small Mall. This is where you get furniture, clothes, and new places to live. Pretty bare right now, but everything is under $1 so I cant complain too much about it. The Movie Theatre shows trailers from upcoming games, movies from Sony, and other similar content. All they have playing in the US theatre was the Twilight trailer, with a music video from Paramount.
Home is kinda fun, and it is pretty innovative. Playing it, I can finally see why its different from Second Life. I can not really picture myself using it as a social tool due to how immature the majority of the place is. It does however make for a fun way to meet, chill, and hang with friends inside your own Home.
The Home decorating aspect is by far the most enjoyment I got out of this, and I’m excited to see what else will come. It’s not perfect, but then… neither is life.
All I can say is, Welcome Home.