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Home logoDo you remember the 90’s console generation? Can you remember reading in magazines about the beautiful game-shaped fruits that the Americans and Japanese enjoyed while we (the Europeans) ate mouldy old cheese-shaped floor sweepings for our offerings from their shores? Well, we did get some nice scraps sent our way sometimes but even those had bits chopped out or borders added on. Basically we lived by the old saying your granny used if you complained; “you’ll eat what you’re given, and enjoy it!”. Ah, those were the days. In truth though, we’re still in those days.

Home Ken/Ryu

Kennn! You said you knew a FUN place to fight!

I recently had a little look at the American PSN Home spaces, and I have to say that I was shocked at what I saw; In fact I was more than shocked, disgusted even. The amount of stuff on offer to the Americans far and away out-weighs what our collective countries get. Lets just remind ourselves which countries make up the European slice of Sony’s market shall we…

Germany, France, U.K, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Switzerland, Poland, Norway, Austria, Greece, Ireland, Finland, Portugal, Romania, Hungary, Croatia, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Latvia, Iceland…

I could go on (I’m sure there are about 44 countries) but I think you’re seeing my point here. I know that America’s a big place and I know they have a lot of disposable income, but do we Europeans really spend that much less than them on DLC in comparison? Just to clear things up here, I’m not sore because I can’t buy a fancy non-existent sofa for my non-existent flat so that my non-existent-self can be more comfortable. I’m sore because ever since I was a child I’ve looked on in envy at our foreign brothers and sisters who seem to get a bigger, tastier slice of gaming goodness and at cheaper prices too. Still going with the PSN Home thing, most furnishings in the American shops cost around the $0.99 mark (that’s about 60p to us Brits), whereas the same things cost us around £1.59. Also, those ‘cubes’ we were all seeing in Home’s shops that seemed to do nothing, they’re ‘value packs’ and they’ve been taken away from the European Home spaces presumably because all Europeans live in mud huts and still trade with chickens or various bits of flotsam they’ve found floating around near their house (sorry, hut) and therefore don’t deserve them. The American Home mall also has all its shop spaces filled with things like the LucasArts shop, Loot shop, Exclusives shop and an E.A shop; whereas ours is more reminiscent of a forgotten Glaswegian high street with its windows boarded up. They also have The Gamer’s Lounge, where you can do a Q&A session with various game developers from time to time and I’m sure we’ve all heard of the more advanced Namco Museum area they have in comparison to us. Actually, instead of just giving us the Namco Museum as a free space like America we’ve been given it as a separate download for the cheap, cheap price of £7.99. As for private Home spaces they get yachts, villas and beach resorts all with a tonne of extra stuff like the ‘value packs’ full of clothes and furnishings for each space at a much, much cheaper price than us. They get wall-hangings and pictures, rugs and carpets, appliances and even TV studios. While the E.U spaces and shops are as barren and empty as a hooker’s pocket in comparison.


If you look closely, you can see tumble-weed

Forgive me for focusing on Home as an example but it’s here that the contrast is obvious, I could mention games that have no rightful place in grotty European hands such as Afrika or Aquanaut’s Holiday but that would probably get a ‘so what’ reaction from most U.K gamers, as the PS3 has no region lock and can be bought online. Most Brits that have had any interaction with PSN Home generally shrug their shoulders in reaction to it, and say it’s as useful as a dried pile of bat vomit if asked what they think. Maybe if we were given the same volume of content as our gaming siblings across the pond we’d be a bit more enthusiastic about it. I used to welcome this new, always-connected-with-the-rest-of-the-world vision where my gaming was concerned, because it was supposed to mean we (as Brits at least) would finally get our sweet slice of game-pie that the others allow themselves, and yet it seems we’re still getting a raw deal regardless of how easy it is to distribute DLC across the globe.

Home boat

Yachts for USA, sweet FA for EU

Now some of you might say that the language barrier is still a problem for games and while this is understandable, I still can’t get my head around why we (the EU) have less films, mini games or game add-ons in our online stores that don’t need any interpretation (save subtitles). Certainly in Home’s case a bunch of hats or T-shirts wouldn’t require much in the way of reiteration for a few different languages, surely? I’ve always supported PSN’s Home because it can bring awareness about games, films and events to the masses, but more importantly it can bring gamers together in a familiar environment and allow them to discuss their favourite past-time. However, after looking to see how much greener the grass on the other side actually is, I’ve been reminded that we are still treated as separate entities because of our global positioning. So it begs the question, why does our brave new world of connectivity still impose these old-fashioned barriers on our gaming community?

Answers on a postcard please.

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Written by R.Furie

Ross has been playing games since he can remember and has had games machines around him all his life. He's what we now refer to as "Old Skool" because he grew up playing games with a hand carved wooden joystick on a TV forged from rope and stone. Nourished on a diet of Space Invaders, Donkey Kong, Joust, Gauntlet, Bomber Jack and other various wholesome arcades he has grown to become a versatile and open minded gamer. Favouring the style of open-world games he's sure VR can't be far away, and looks forward to attaching himself to a colostomy bag and slipping into a deep VR coma so he need never have to deal with real life again.


  1. Kevin M /

    Totally agree with your article. We are only now getting the Ghostbusters space, around a year after the Americans! For something that doesn’t need any form of language translation, it’s ridiculous. Home is good for the odd half hour, but we need more content to keep us coming back, and that sadly just isn’t the case. The whole lack of interactivity, bar silly dances, also mean boredom creeps in all too quickly.

    • KrazyFace /

      I’m sure we were promised the ability to stream music from our HDD into our personal spaces at some point too, which never happened. I don’t know if the American Home has this though. There’s also the rumour that we were supposed to get the ability to take our pictures from our HDD and use them in our spaces also, whatever happened to that is anyone’s guess.

      It all just seems like such a wasted effort from Sony really…

      • joostin /

        Unfortunately, thus far the NA version of Home does not allow streaming of music via HDD due to copyright infringement issues they are trying to get around still (4 years later lol)…we did however, just get an update that allows us to PURCHASE a picture frame for our home space which allows for pics from the HDD to be uploaded. I think the issues we see in EU is that there are so many different countries all with different ratings systems, this means any game space (home, villa, store, arcade, etc.) needs to go through the ratings censors before going online. I know this sucks, but maybe it is time for all of the EU to at least come together and have just one ratings system. ie. here we have the ESRB in NA. That covers Canada/USA I believe. I know it sucks, but I would blame the convoluted ratings system throughout said 44 countries before blaming the gaming industry. Write your Members of Parliament or Congress or whatever you have in your country and tell them to get with the times and consolidate the ratings system in Europe. This was the explanation given by the Playstation Network Manager, Grace Chen about why the store updates take longer in Europe and also why the EU gets updates, DLC, Home spaces later than their Japanese/North American counterparts.

        Hope this helps in the explanation category, but I know it won’t help get anything to you guys any faster.

        Happy Gaming!


        • Kevin M /

          Even if we could buy TV’s for our pads that play Vidzone to create a bit of atmosphere around the place. That would be much better than the soulless empty rooms we have at present. Good to hear that there are picture frames out now, that let you put your own photos in them though. I wonder how long it will be before we get them…Not holding my breath!

          • KrazyFace /

            Heeey, wicked idea man! If they can put it on VidZone to stream to the PS3 HDD surely they can stream VidZone into Home? Or am I just thinking technology’s better than it is?

          • Kevin M /

            Have they not streamed concerts into Home, or am I imagining things? I’m sure it would be possible mate and Sony really need to do something to liven things up.

  2. half_empty80 /

    I do agree that it is annoying that the EU lags behind Japan and North American in terms of content and releases. Maybe it is all about the specific market. Perhaps less is released here since the European gamer isn’t going to buy virtual fluff. On the other hand, the PS3 (or whatever) is primarily a games console, so are films, add ons, DLC or Home really important?

  3. TedTheDawg /

    I find a quick blast on Home helps me immensely, I love all the headshots and the rocket launcher is superb…..this is about call of duty isn’t it?

  4. UrAnIdiot /

    It says to speak our mind yet comments that dont agree with the article dont get published…

    • Luke K /

      We welcome all comments, either positive or negative… so long as those who comment appear to have a minimum of three brain cells to rub together.

      Comments filled with expletives and derogatory homophobic terms, such as yours, will not be published on the site.

  5. MusterBustersBigToe /


  6. R.Furie /

    Sorry, i am a xbox fanboy.

    • KrazyFace /

      Hahahahaha! “Sorry i am a xbox fanboy”, the grammer in that single sentence alone tells me you aren’t the person that wrote this article.

      Not even a good try man…

  7. steven g /

    heya, your article caused me to revisit Home. It has so much potential, but so many of the areas are just models with no functionality, few people hanging around etc. it does feel like a lost opportunity!

    I kinda like the vibe and enjoy busier areas. The main games room area with the pool and arcade games is cool. But Im not too sure I like the idea of standing in line to play a game! It doesn’t have to be THAT true to life surely?

    However the range of content is poor. Once again, perhaps have a PSN+ is the way forward which would incorporate more content, which is free with the subscription. Home could be Xbox’s Arcade room and so much more, but at present its just digital space to walk around in.

  8. KrazyFace /

    Kevin M, Yeah they have. I think it was Groove Armada that did a ‘live’ concert thingy a while back, which I missed. But they need more of that. They did have the Steriophonics availible to meet in the Singstar area just last week (I think) too, though I didn’t really see them there.

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