We've all heard about the motion-sensitive controller being sprung on developers a few weeks before E3. There have been stories about how the PlayStation 3 and its set of Cell processors are difficult to program for, much as we heard stories about the PlayStation 2 before it. There were the claims (and subsequent denials) of overheating consoles at Tokyo Game Show. And, of course, the online system is still in flux, with some features ready for launch and others simply promised for the future.
With more than 20 games available at launch, I'm betting at least one of them has a
Technically, a showstopper bug in one (or even a few) launch titles wouldn't be much of a problem, from Sony's point of view.
They just wouldn't be launch titles anymore. And one or two less than "more than 20" is still pretty much more than 20.
Although it sometimes gets misused, and the idea might seem quaintly obsolete now, a "showstopper bug" does just that. By definition, it's a bug that's so bad the software can't be released until it's fixed.
If you see the bug in the commercial product, it's too late to be a showstopper. (Maybe it _should_ have been a showstopper...)
Companies seem to ride through early hardware and software issues both.
If a "showstopper" is caught, then the game may just get delayed. With the low number of PS3s that will even be available, will it even matter if a launch title gets delayed even months? With the demand for the system so high on promises alone? And with so many other launch titles?
If a "showstopper" slips through to release (or is even let through,) then maybe there will be an update or maybe it will just be forgotten. Other systems have certainly had buggy games, some major. They either get re-releases or ignored. Sometimes the games themselves are forgotten.
On a completely unrelated note (using this as a jvm message board):
If the PS3 didn't overheat at the Tokyo Game Show, with continuous use over three days in an unseasonably hot Tokyo autumn in an eclosed hall packed with more people than was probably safe - heck, it's not going to overheat anywhere.
On bugs, I've seen game-ruining bugs for almost every platform over the last month or so (even Bubble Bobble on my beloved DS!) so it doesn't seem too unlikely that one of the already fairly rushed-looking PS3 titles will get one. My personal money would be on Lair, possibly the most disappointingly bad execution of a great concept that I've ever had the sad misfortune to play.
Baines: True enough that these problems come and go and can have little lasting effect. The Theme Park Roller Coaster game that came out with the PS2 apparently had some serious bugs. Few people even know that game exists, much less that it was buggy.
Zakk: Downloaded. Will try later, thanks.
GregT: Well, the DragonStrike game for the NES was an earlier "ride the dragon" game that truly disappointed. It didn't even manage the flight-sim look of the original game on home computers... :^)