Sony just dropped the price on all kinds of Playstation 3 development tools and hardware. They are now giving developers better tools to increase productivity and bust out those games a lot faster. Here’s the full release:
SONY COMPUTER ENTERTAINMENT FURTHER STRENGTHENS ITS SUPPORT FOR GAME DEVELOPMENT FOR PLAYSTATION 3
Introduction of New Reference Tool Models to Provide a Lower-cost Game Development Environment
Tokyo, March 23, 2009 – Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCEI) today announced that it would further strengthen its support for game development on PLAYSTATION®3 (PS3®) computer entertainment system. Since the launch of PS3, SCEI has introduced a wide range of hardware and software tools to improve efficiency in game development for PS3, and the company will continue its effort to support the growing game development community.
To meet the needs of various game development styles, SCE reduced the price of the original Reference Tool models DECR-1000A and DECR-1000 in 2007, as well as added new features to PS3 Debugging Station to help raise productivity in game development. Further enhancing its support for developers, SCE introduced new Reference Tool models in March 2009, DECR-1400A for North America and Europe/PAL territories at US $2,000 and €1,700 respectively, and DECR-1400J for Japan at JPY 200,000. Having the same form factor as the commercially available PS3, the new Reference Tool models allow advanced game programming and more efficient computer graphics rendering. With its more affordable pricing, this new model will appeal to a broader range of developers and publishers, and will help to provide a more streamlined game development environment, further accelerating the game development for PS3.
In addition to the introduction of new Reference Tool models, SCE will also enhance its support by providing a comprehensive line-up of software tools as well as technical support to the game development community. “SNC PPU toolchain for PLAYSTATION 3 (SNC)”, a compiler made available as part of the Software Development Kit* since February 2008, is optimized to the power of PS3 and generates high-quality code. As a result, not only will it contribute to raising the quality of the game but also to significantly improving productivity.
SNC is widely supported by many developers and publishers for its quality and efficiency, and is utilized in some of the best-selling franchise titles including Fallout 3 from Bethesda Softworks LLC, Killzone 2 from Guerrilla Games, and Ryu ga Gotoku 3 from SEGA Corporation. SCE will continue to further improve the performance of SNC and will expand its features to meet the needs of the game creators.
Additionally, at the Game Developer’s Conference held in San Francisco, California, in February 2008, SCE introduced a graphics-rendering engine known as the PhyreEngine™. Provided as a full package along with its source code, and incorporated with many updated features including the linkage with the physics engines, this graphics rendering engine is adaptable to various game development styles. Furthermore, documents describing the technical aspects and overview of PhyreEngine have been made available to help the game developer community in creating games more efficiently using this graphics engine. The latest version 2.40, released in March 2009, includes a new “foliage rendering” system that provides tools and technology to render ultra-realistic trees and plants to be easily integrated into games, helping game developers to express their creativity more freely on the PS3 system.
With more and more new and exciting PS3 titles scheduled for release this year from third party developers and publishers as well as from SCE Worldwide Studios, SCEI will deploy various measures to further reinforce game development for PS3 and will continue to expand the platform to offer attractive interactive entertainment experiences only available on PS3.
* Software Development Kit is a set of development tools and software libraries. Developers are able to obtain this SDK by signing a license agreement with SCE and by purchasing tool products.