Poor old Home. Beleaguered by technical issues at launch and accused of everything from sex-pesting up your kids to being a bit boring, the service hasn’t had the best of starts. Now, on top of all that, the developers of the virtual world have chipped in with their own little snippet of nega-news: The service was announced too early.
In an interview with Develop, Game Director Peter Edward has said that third-party developers were reluctant to get involved when they realised how far from completion it was when announced in 2007. “Initially, there was real excitement from people, because we were showing something really different and that had a lot of potential,” said Edward. “And then there’s the realisation that, well, we probably announced it too early – GDC 07 was a long time ago. I think there was sort of recognition amongst developers of ‘Oh, this is interesting, but there’s still a lot of work to be done.'”
As a result of the early announcement, public interest and expectation grew, effectively forcing Sony to release Home early (under the guise of an open beta), with relatively little third-party content, to a lukewarm reception. But things are on the up, says Edward, as third-parties get to grips with the technology and what it is capable of. “…[N]ow it’s at a really nice stage where people realise that it’s not that difficult, and also that the possibilities are pretty vast. So we’re back at the exciting stage again.”