E3: Sony's press conference - full report

Don't forget the PS2

Sony is the only one of the three major console manufacturers to still pay attention to its older hardware at E3 and, while many in the crowd only want to know what's new on PS3 and PSP, Tretton spends a good amount of time discussing the PlayStation 2 business.

"In many ways the success of PS2 has allowed us to be more aggressive [with PS3]," says Tretton.

"In 2008 we're introducing more than 130 titles to PlayStation 2," he adds, with brief demos of Yakuza 2, Force Unleashed, NCAA Football, Tiger Woods, Warriors Orochi 2, SingStar Pop vol. 2, Madden and Mercenaries 2: World in Flames.

Tretton also announces (yet another) new budget PS2 bundle - $149 for the PS2 console, plus a copy of the Lego Batman game and animated movie Justice League. Bargain!

PlayStation Network, new Ratchet

As of later this autumn, all PlayStation Network users will get a single sign-on, announces Tretton, adding that over 180 million pieces of content have been downloaded from PSN since the PS3 launched back in November 2006 in the US and Japan.

The next new game announced at E3 by Sony is Ratchet and Clank Future: Quest for Booty – described by the game's producer as "a shorter game at a lower ($14.99) price" and by Tretton as "great entertainment for about the cost of a movie ticket."

A number of other new and already announced downloadable games are also briefly demoed including titles such as Crash Commando, the (ludicrously un-PC) Fat Princess, PixelJunk Eden, Pain: Amusement Park, Flower, Siren: Blood Curse and RagDoll KungFu: Fists of Plastic.

Gran Turismo TV, Home, Movies

Petrolheads in the audience were clearly thrilled to hear that Polyphony Digital's Gran Turismo pay-per-view TV service will be launching on 1st August, announced with plenty of footage of feted GT producer Kazunori Yamauchi racing Ferraris and suchlike.

No release date was forthcoming for PS3's Home service, but Tretton at least thanks gamers for being patient, as he demos some of the game-themed spaces in Home.

Quickly moving on, Tretton is happy to announce that studio partners for PSN's video download service already include Sony Pictures (obviously) Fox, MGM, Lions Gate, Warner, Disney, Paramount, Turner and Funimation.

Standard and High-def are now available for rental or sell-through TV starting from $1.99 for movie rentals up to $14.99 for purchases. Once downloaded you can seamlessly shift your TV or movie content from your PS3 or PC over to your PSP to watch on the go.

"The video store will be available tonight!" Tretton is clearly happy to announce.

PlayStation Portable, Resistance Retribution

As of this October Sony plans to offer a new PSP bundle, made up of the popular game Ratchet and Clank: Size Matters, a silver PSP, 1GB Memory Stick, a UMD copy of movie National Treasure 2 and a voucher for the stylish puzzler Echochrome all for $199 (£100).

A genuine new PSP exclusive, Resistance Retribution is also announced, due for a spring 2009 release.

"We've always felt the PSP is the key to Sony owning the living room," notes Tretton. "This is every bit the hybrid device that we've always imagined. People continue to move from their office to their living room, and now that people can download movies through the PS3, this is the reality that we're building between the PSP and the PSN."

DC Universe online, 40GB PS3 scrapped

Jim Lee, director of the promising PS3 MMO DC Universe Online enthuses about his project, a game that features every DC superhero, winning the affection of the crowd as he tells them:

"This is really a dream project for me. When I was a kid, my parents wanted me to become a doctor and follow in my father's footsteps. Meanwhile, I wanted to read comic books."

Adam Hartley