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Round Up: PSP White,  Pogo  in China, Kalinske On Sega

Round Up: PSP White, Pogo in China, Kalinske On Sega

July 11, 2006 | By Jason Dobson

July 11, 2006 | By Jason Dobson
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Today's round-up includes news of Sony pulling controversial PSP advertisements, EA and Tian Yue bringing Pogo to China, and an interview with former Sega president Tom Kalinske, as well as the latest GameSetWatch posts, product news, and Gamasutra job postings.

- Following the recent controversy that erupted surrounding a new advertisement promoting the release of the new ceramic white PSP model from Sony in the Netherlands, consumer website GameSpot has indicated that Sony has pulled the advertisements from circulation. “Whilst the images used in the campaign were intended solely to highlight the contrast between the different colors available for the PSP,” noted a statement issued by Sony on the matter, “we recognize that the subject matter of one specific image may have caused concern in some countries not directly affected by the advertising. As a result, we have now withdrawn the campaign.” The statement added: “We further recognize that people have a wide variety of perceptions about such imagery and we wish to apologize to those who perceived the advert differently to that intended. In future, we will apply greater sensitivity in our selection of campaign imagery, and will take due account of the increasingly global reach of such local adverts, and their potential impact in other countries.”

- Following the recent announcement of a strategic alliance between Tian Yue and Electronic Arts, Tian Yue today announced that Pogo China, the first EA branded online offering, will be in open beta by the summer. The service, which is based on the successful Western casual game service from Electronic Arts, is currently in closed beta. By open beta this summer, the Pogo China website will have ten casual games including Fighting Landlord, Poppit!, Harvest Mania, and Battle Phlinx. Gamers can also win extra tokens and popular gifts as rewards from its unique complex prizes and rewards system.

- In a retrospective interview with fansite Sega-16, former Sega president and current vice chairman of LeapFrog Tom Kalinske spoke candidly about his time with the video game powerhouse during the 16-bit era of the early to mid 90s. While the bulk of the interview concerned the Genesis, when asked about the Sega CD, Kalinske noted how he had worked with Sony's Olaf Olafsson and former Sony of America CEO Mickey Shulhoff to come up with the next potential CD-based gaming platform. “I remember we had a document that Olaf and Mickey took to Sony that said they'd like to develop jointly the next hardware – the next game platform, with Sega, and here's what we think it ought to do. Sony apparently gave the green light to that. I took it to Sega of Japan and told them that this was what we thought an ideal platform would be – at least from an U.S. perspective – based on what we've learned from the Sega CD, and our involvement with Sony and our own people. Sega said not a chance.”

- The latest updates on Gamasutra sister weblog GameSetWatch include a classic NES console modified with bent circuits and extra knobs, the latest, somewhat suspect 'Our Blazing Destiny' webcomic, and VH1 lashing out at weblog Kotaku.

- Also updated today: Gamasutra product news on Hansoft announcing support of Agile methodologies and Geomerics' real-time radiosity solution, as well as the latest Gamasutra job postings, featuring openings from Flagship Studios, Incinerator Studios, Vicarious Visions and Zono.


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