Print 64 comment(s) - last by afkrotch.. on Jul 7 at 7:50 AM

In-game XMB accesses

PS3 game Trophies
2.40 firmware bricks some PS3 consoles

Many rejoiced late last night when Sony posted the 2.40 firmware update for the Playstation 3. The 2.40 brought a number of improvements to the platform including in-game XMB accesses, a new Trophy system similar in concept to Xbox 360 Achievements, and the ability for gamers to use music playlists within games (provided that the game developers provides a patch to support the feature).

Shortly after the update went live, many users began reporting problems with the update. A thread over at the official Playstation 3 forums is currently up to 61-pages and is filled with a number of irate owners.

According to Kotaku, the update is causing some controllers to malfunction, and in many cases, it bricks the system altogether. All Playstation 3 systems -- 20GB, 40GB, 60GB, and 80GB -- have an equal chance in having problems with the update, so no one is safe.

There are currently numerous theories and workarounds being proposed by forum-goers, but no one fix has been found to fix everyone's 2.40 firmware woes.

Because of the widespread problems, Sony decided to pull firmware update. In a statement released this afternoon, the company said, "In order to further assess the issue, we have temporarily taken the firmware offline for further testing. We are working diligently to isolate the problem for those few consumers and to identify a solution before we put the firmware back up."

No other details were provided on when the "fixed" 2.40 firmware will be uploaded or if a 2.41 firmware will simply be issued to address the problems at hand.

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RE: This blows!
By MamiyaOtaru on 7/3/2008 2:02:00 AM , Rating: 2
hah right when consoles are getting formerly PC exclusive stuff like online play and mods, they pick up some of the downsides too, like higher prices (than older consoles) and the occasional brick. Are we going to meet in the middle?

RE: This blows!
By StevoLincolnite on 7/3/2008 3:21:21 AM , Rating: 3
So your saying, as technology improves, reliability decreases?

The Dreamcast had online play, Used Discs and what not, and it's still going to this day, My Xbox 1 console had the Hard Drive, Online play and what not and it's still going to this day, the only difference is the more powerful hardware, and extra features, but from what I can gather increasing performance or adding features should never come at the price of stability.

RE: This blows!
By EnzoFX on 7/3/2008 3:29:06 AM , Rating: 5
Maybe he's saying that's its progressed too fast, only in the sense that they're not taking the time to make things reliable. Everyone is in a hurry to rush out the next great set of features. We as customers are also to blame.

RE: This blows!
By Ticholo on 7/3/2008 6:36:24 AM , Rating: 3
Actually I share his sentiment.
But the problem isn't the hardware, the consumers or even the manufacturers.
PS3 and XBOX360 are more like PCs than any console before. One big factor in that is a mindset for more updates and patches. Where the PS2 and the XBOX were fairly static devices, these new ones are constantly evolved through software much like PCs or PC hardware drivers.
I think this has more cons than pros. It adds a layer of complexity that on a PC, as an open platform that you may even have built yourself, is fairly easy to resolve even if you have to re-install your OS. But on a console, the manufacturer wants to control what you can do, so you are given less options to resolve these issues.
And then you don't expect to have to deal with things like these on consoles. Claiming hardware/feature progress isn't an excuse. If those things progress so should the way these problems are dealt with or anticipated.
Taking PC practices to consoles isn't a good idea. If people wanted PCs they'd buy PCs!

RE: This blows!
By StevoLincolnite on 7/3/2008 7:30:35 AM , Rating: 2
Well Personally there are ways to add functionality other than performing a firmware update, for instance they could just install the update onto a storage device like a HDD, or a Memory card, and when the console boots up it checks for these "Patches" and applies them.
Then if a patch goes wrong, it would be simple enough to just wipe the device and start again.

Or perhaps have a dual firmware system, where you can boot the console into sort of a "Safe Mode" and revert it back to it's original state.

Yes the Xbox and PS2 were "Static" devices, but calling the xbox 360 more of a PC than the original Xbox is not fairly accurate, hardware wise the Xbox 1 was more of a PC than the 360 thanks to the use of an x86 processor, plus it had down-loadable content from Xbox Live! Software updates and all that extra Jazz.

All I want is more reliability and Peace of mind, so far all companies have been guilty of the bricking, Including the Wii, 360 and the PS3.

RE: This blows!
By wallijonn on 7/3/2008 12:20:21 PM , Rating: 2
Taking PC practices to consoles isn't a good idea. If people wanted PCs they'd buy PCs!

Imagine what would happen if your standalone BD player automatically updated its firmware and it bricked? People may expect that from a virus infected PC but not from a DVD player.

And yet that is exactly what will be happening - your phone, TV, PC, DVD, cable box, etc., will probably all one day have wireless Ethernet ports built in which will be automatically updated.

But all it really means is that we have all turned into beta testers. Unfortunately that may not be tolerated when it comes to stand alone players. In the past if it didn't play a movie you'd have to buy a new player (APEX days). Now with the Internet the news will be flashed around the world and will likely make the 5 o'clock news. Then sales will plummet.

RE: This blows!
By BansheeX on 7/3/2008 9:28:27 AM , Rating: 3
So your saying, as technology improves, reliability decreases?

No, as technology progresses, complexity increases. Higher complexity generally means more opportunities for bugs to occur and greater manpower needed to prevent them. The NES and SNES didn't even have a BIOS, so there was no chance that a firmware update could brick the system. Now we have that chance.

That said, I wonder why the first PS3 article we've had in months on DT is a negative one. There were numerous DT articles surrounding the Halo 3 release, but not a PEEP about MGS4, blu-ray, or recent sales numbers. No, let's instead report the first slip-up of the year. Sorry to sound like a conspiracist...

RE: This blows!
By Aloonatic on 7/3/2008 9:50:13 AM , Rating: 2
I didn't want to be the first to mention the lack of a "Metal Gear Solid 4 Day" as we usually get for long anticipated releases, e.g. Halo 3 and GTA4.

Especially as it is a major exclusive. Or maybe, if I may join you in conspiracists (or is that conspirators? We're not conspiring tho? I don't know) corner (?) it's this very reason why it didn't get much notice on here.

By the way, MGS4 is an awesome game, and the cut scenes aren't too bad either (maybe because you can pause them now) though reading up on the MGS history is a must before starting the game to get the most out of it I think.

It is, however, let down a little by the on-line play. Only a small hand full of maps and the servers don't seem to be up to the job. Does sometimes make you wonder if the £5/month xBox Live charge is worth it. I've lost count of the times I've been lining someone up in my sights only for them to disappear and the reappear a second or so later.

When it works it is great fun though, don't get me wrong.

RE: This blows!
By BansheeX on 7/3/2008 12:12:51 PM , Rating: 2
Wait, I almost forgot, Anandtech did review Haze! Yes, let's ignore ten far better exclusives including MGS4 and cherrypick the disappointments for front page reviews. That'll make Sony look bad! </conspiracy>

RE: This blows!
By sweetsauce on 7/5/2008 1:30:13 PM , Rating: 1
or it could be that all you idiot fanboys bitched at them for reviewing that retarded game so they decided not to review games anymore. That was pretty much a test review and you fanboys came out in great form to pretty much confirm what they suspected, that maybe they should just stay out of the game review business.

RE: This blows!
By StevoLincolnite on 7/4/2008 12:03:26 AM , Rating: 2
No, as technology progresses, complexity increases. Higher complexity generally means more opportunities for bugs to occur and greater manpower needed to prevent them. The NES and SNES didn't even have a BIOS, so there was no chance that a firmware update could brick the system. Now we have that chance.

Exactly, so you are saying "As Technology improves, reliability decreases". - No amount of fancy wording will hide that statement.

RE: This blows!
By Aloonatic on 7/4/2008 4:42:04 AM , Rating: 2
I guess he's saying that (as complexity increases) there's more opportunity for errors to occur, that's just common sense.

But end user reliability should not necessary increase automatically and unhindered.

If that were the case, imagine what the reliability of the much more complex xBox720 (or whatever it will be called) would be? *I'm not having a go, just using the xBox360 as an obvious example.

It will almost certainly (fingers crossed) be a much more reliable system than it's predecessor as they will put much more time/resources into making sure that this is the case.

Therefore I don't think it's unreasonable to say that the amount of effort required to maintain a certain level of reliability does increase as complexity increases however?

RE: This blows!
By BansheeX on 7/4/2008 8:37:08 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly, so you are saying "As Technology improves, reliability decreases". - No amount of fancy wording will hide that statement.

No, that's NOT the equivalent of what I said. Reliability depends on the ability to do the job. Does the NES have a more reliable operating system than the PS3? It doesn't have an operating system, so it can't have a more reliable one. Go back to blowing on cartridges if that's your idea of reliability.

RE: This blows!
By StevoLincolnite on 7/4/2008 9:28:36 AM , Rating: 3
The Xbox used a modified Windows 2000 Operating System, and it was perfectly fine.

The NES, Snes and N64, heck even the Sega Master System, Sega Dreamcast, Sega Saturn, Sega Mega drive, Xbox 1, PSX, PS2, Gameboy, Gameboy Pocket, Gameboy Colour, Gameboy Advanced never exhibited these flaws.

Several of those listed have an "Operating System" - Which do not have any of the sort of issues currently shown in this generation of consoles, which throws your theory out of the window.

Cartridges were fine before the advent of Full 3D Acceleration, and non-portable devices, where the storage space was not a requirement.

Heck at least I know if one of the kids grabbed the cartridge, and left it lying on the floor that it would still work again, try that with a CD/DVD and see how long it lasts.

Also the older consoles didn't need an operating system, for the simple fact that programming directly for the hardware provided more performance allowing more processing headroom, these days because games are so complex, that middle-ware is required in order to provide acceptable game-production time, with little overhead.
Although, Game Producers are still able to some extent program directly for the hardware, it's still not performed very often.

PC's have gotten MORE and MORE powerful, yet the hardware/software stability issues have not increased (Remember the Blue screen of Death on the Win95 and 98 platforms? - That out-weighs most issues these days.)

So That is probably another reason that throws that particular theory out of the window.

RE: This blows!
By William Gaatjes on 7/6/2008 9:20:09 AM , Rating: 2
Nothing to do with that.

Either you can do the job or you can not. Simple.

We have come to the point where people accept everything.
I don't buy the new consoles cause the reasons i bought a console in the past are gone : Reliability , no hassle with updates, freedom to play when i want and what i want after i bought the game. All gone.

A occasional ppm failure is not an issue. But what i have seen with for example the xbox360 and now this with the ps3 is not acceptable for me.

You are all paying to be beta testers while instead you should be payed for it.

But then again nowadays it is normal to accept that everything has flawes because god forbid ,we should get quality control back again.

"If this update has flaws, we just make another one ! hahaha"

"God i love the EULA, the virtual chain around their legs"

We had the excuse 1:
It is to complex.

that excuse did not work with the pc, why ?

Since the pc can be build from numerous different pieces of hardware there was an general common api needed to make sure a given program works on any pc. That is why we have for example windows and directx. Alas , game companies did not always listen and microsoft solved compatibility problems with hacks.

Anyway, If i take for example the xbox360, these machines all have the same hardware, run at the same speed, etc etc.
So debugging is a lot easier. That is the whole trick, a common hardware platform.

Now you know 1 of the reasons why Apple is coupling hardware and software.
Common (a known hardware platform) hardware plaform.

So no excuse and this goes exactly for the PS3 and wii too.

IF it doesn't work they screwed you and you just have to deal with it.

Back in the old days there where people who enjoyed making the best hard and software possible for a given budget.

Now they just want budget. There is no drive , no spirit anymore. Just money money money.

I can remember when someone came with the idea to make games based similair as linux live cd's work.

A linux based kernel and build the game on top of it. Everything contained on a dvd. Load the stuff up in your pc and you can game. A good idea but to many parties who did not coöperate.

RE: This blows!
By afkrotch on 7/7/2008 7:50:17 AM , Rating: 2
Now you know 1 of the reasons why Apple is coupling hardware and software.
Common (a known hardware platform) hardware plaform.

Whether you tie hardware to software, problems arise. Everything has problems. The original NES had problems. 10NES lockout chip anyone?

Nowadays, many issues can simply be solved with an update. No longer are we stuck with a bugged game, only waiting for a new version to get released or the next in a series of games.

I have Melty Blood: Act Cadenza for PS2. The main boss is bugged. It makes it purely luck that you beat the boss and no skill in the game helps. As it's a PS2 game, there are no updates you can download. Instead you must spend more money on ver. B that fixes the flaw.

Also additions/changes to the game. Adding new music to Guitar Hero/Rock Band, updated rosters for Madden, new tracks, cars, maps, character costumes, etc. Minor additions created for the game, so you can enjoy it longer.

How about getting demos, videos, etc. Sure, you might run into a bug here or there, but the list of new features never before seen in a console makes it well worth the troubles.

But hey, car companies make lemons sometimes. Do you not buy a car? Even cars come out with problems.

"Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town." -- Charlie Miller
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