I think even if the PS3 costs 600$ initially and games at 50$ each it will still be a sell but be a slow burner, offcoarse if the price is too high you leave emerging and mainstream markets in umm a confusing situation and might give the nintendo revolution a chance in which case next gen media adoption will be a bit hampered. But I think that PS3 will be the biggest (and best) of the 3, as for the xbox 360 and revolution conventional wisdom says the 360 is beating the revolution, but the revolution is still a mysterious beast and if it hits hard and fast it might make a difference. We should also remember that this generation of consoles (sadly in a way) excludes sega, the Sega launched early which gave it a fighting chance, PS2 swamped the market, gamecube and xbox came and picked up the pieces ( sad but true, check the release dates pricing and sales figures). Some average figures (not meant to be accurate just for a simple proof of concept) units shipped:
-released late 98 Dreamcast about 20mil——–15months later
-released early 2000 PS2 100mil+—————–18months later (yeah it was that long)
-released late 2001 Gcube about 18.5mil——-2 months later
released late 2001 Xbox about 22mil (kinda one sided aint it?)
Now lets see how this generation of consoles is unfolding(assuming same market size, scale it as you want). 360 maybe up to 8 months ahead of PS3 (compared to dreamcasts 15 months ahead of ps2 and a futher year and a half ahead of gamecube and xbox), its selling very well, lets say by the time ps3 is out xbox sells i dont know 7 million (dreamcast took 2 years to reach 20), I inflated the figures because of microsofts better initial release figures and campaign though, capacity, late games, lack of momentum and technical issues are all potential downfalls which could cause sales to dip to as low as 5 million though I think my initial estimate is fair, who knows now days?
The PS3 might come out as early as may (some say march) maybe at E3 who knows. The only important thing is that Sony comes out before holiday season, Ensuring it sales of up to 20 million consoles by the end of the year if they can keep up with demand, why?
People arent going to sit on their hands and contemplate which of there old games they cant play, they wont be in any doubt as to the availibility fantastic games at launch (unlike the ps2 and xbox 360), and the time between PS3 launch and Blu ray launch will give people to realize that some new fangled optical thingy promises better video for that tv that broke the bank six months ago, but wowzer those dvd player like thingies cost as much as a car, oh damn the _insert console name here_ just went bust the kids will drive me crazy. The answer to all my prayers the PS3 is here yay, its just instantly lovable.
And then a mysterious figure sneaks into the ring, Nintedos lightwight the revolution(around September06). Those people too sensible to spend 400+$ on a console, dig the new controller, own a DS or happen to own a gamecube, will buy the revolution quite happily. It shares the PS3 advantage of backwards compatibility with games (from the gamecube in this case) and will even be compatible with most of the gamecubes hardware. Another thing worthy of note is nintendo will allow emulation of older N64 and SNES games, though the system seems cumbersome and will cost extra money (unlike the PS3). And the new controller is really risky, especially releasing the nintendo so close to the holiday season might be dangerous. But they will probably sell upwards of 3 million by years end come hell or high water.
So this year (okay some of it happened in 05) sees the 360 taking the Dreamcasts place as the first to hit the shelves, PS3 in the middle like last time with ps2, and the N-revolution taking the place of the original xbox and the gamecube as the sweeper. I wont analyze the genration before because the Saturn release was incompetent which left the market between the late coming N64 and the fun for everyone PSone (psone was the one because it had something for everyone hahaha funny, k maybe not).
Bottom line I think the 360 is great but the PS3 has the fanbase and developers backing and it again will dominate the market. The revolution can really make something great of itself if it can project itself as a mainstream product, especially since it substantially undercuts the other two consoles prices, Nintendo needs a lifline besides Mario and Pokemon (every other great game on a nintedo is a Mario game). Nintendo has some promising titles in the pipeline but their not making a good show of it. The PS3 is destined for greatness, lets forget about the online junk and services, those are just extras, but at its heart the PS3 is what a console needs to be, cool, sexy, flashy and functional. But this tim round you have to give all the next gen consoles big credit, they are all cool and clever on their own way and aim high and probably this time around some of Sonys marketshare will slip, if Microsoft and Nintendo play their cards right.
As a footnote the PS3 is also the most multimedia capable device which is another selling point. I think this all makes a real mess though of the pc market who have been trying to crack into the mulimedia market, the 360 will compliment the PCs but the revolution like i said is a more mysterious and convntional console (all things being relative).
To me HD gaming is a wow factor, in the end graphics dont mean a better game, I still play ff7, fft, omega boost, granstream saga,castlevania… the hardware involved in these consoles promises spectacular graphics with or without HD (which the revolution lacks) but I dont even think the consumer should think about it (not that it wont be marketed or matter to some people). Myself (and my family) will probably wait a year or so after PS3 release to buy one, I dont really play much so dont mark me as biased, I play playstation games on my mac/pc and unreal at 640 by 480 and the occasional blockbuster game on PS2 (DMC3, Tekken, FFX, Onimusha 3,NFS underground,GT4, Armored core actually) im not an uber gamer but im not stupid im fairly young I used to play aot and these are just educated opinions I am expressing, but to me if i were to buy anything it would probably be the PS3, new games or not the old ones rock, and im not willing to part with them, this is where the 360 loses out because some of the best older titles are unplayable. Thanx for reading.