Nintendo makes 'babysitting tools' - Sony

SCEA CEO Jack Tretton blasts rivals in Fortune interview, says cutting-edge technology at launch is key to a long life cycle.

635 Comments

Earlier this week, Sony Computer Entertainment America CEO Jack Tretton made headlines for saying the Japanese earthquake and tsunami might delay the launch of the NGP. While that assertion was later dismissed by Sony, the executive has now once again found himself in the news for some scathing comments about his company's competition.

SCEA CEO Jack Tretton.
SCEA CEO Jack Tretton.

Speaking with Fortune magazine, Tretton was blunt in his assessment of the suite of DS devices, which he referred to collectively as the "Game Boy experience." He said, "Our view of the 'Game Boy experience' is that it's a great babysitting tool, something young kids do on airplanes, but no self-respecting 20-something is going to be sitting on an airplane with one of those. He's too old for that."

He went on to offer some choice words about the Xbox 360 and Wii as well, saying: "They're starting to run out of steam now in terms of continuing to be relevant in 2011 and beyond. I mean, you've gotta be kidding me. Why would I buy a gaming system without a hard drive in it? How does this thing scale? Motion gaming is cute, but if I can only wave my arms six inches, how does this really feel like I'm doing true accurate motion gaming?"

Naturally, Tretton praised his own company's platforms, particularly the PlayStation 3. "If you're really going to sustain technology for a decade, you have to be cutting edge when you launch a platform," he told Fortune. "Here we are four years into the PlayStation 3, and it's just hitting its stride. We'll enjoy a long downhill roll behind it because the technology that was so cutting-edge in 2006 is extremely relevant today and is conspicuously absent in our competition."

The executive also talked up 3D gaming, saying, "Conceptually, it's hard for people to put their head around. But when you put them in front of a 3D TV and you have them play Killzone [3] or Uncharted [3] or you let them watch the National Championship in 3D, they get it. Just like with HD, people have to experience it, there has to be content that takes advantage of it, and I think this is going to be a pretty nice breakout year for that."

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hondustar37

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@slickvic1990 anyone who knows a thing about gaming understands that the move detects greater motion than the Shii. If you wanna call it copying den hey, dats ur opinion. But when a conole offers motion gaming that reads up, right, left, down how are you truly immersed in that experience? Now the move, it reads all angles via the sphere at da tip(dats why its there)and juss to sh*t on da Sexbox some, at least you dont have to clear an area and make sure people arent in the way before you play. Another reason why Sony dominates.....they give us control of our games, not gimmicks(Kinect, Shii balance board)

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link_15

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you know you're successful when people bad mouth you.

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ohiostatedog

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@xenolair because they can't talk down on someone so far up.

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ohiostatedog

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@slickvic1990 They kind of copied them, but the made it better. PS move is what Wii should be.

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princeuncharted

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true

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slickvic1990

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what's worse: calling Nintendo kiddy, or copying them with Move. this guy's a jerk...

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wiifan001

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I don't know which is worse: childishly insulting Nintendo with with irrational comments or saying that it took 4 years for his system to just now hit its stride :?

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benswinbanks

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"but no self-respecting 20-something is going to be sitting on an airplane with one of those. He's too old for that." Hahaha, this self respecting 24 yr old did 2 days ago buddy. Does this douchebag even PLAY games?! /facepalm

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phazer

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If what he says is right, then Nintendo platforms are perfect for him, since he's such a baby.

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Skrapshak

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@MamaLuigiBarrel While I certainly would hope that they have fixed their manufacturing processes, I can't fathom why they would expect someone to buy more than one PS3. Frankly, I don't have the cash to float for a second PS3. With the way they touted it's longevity after it's release, I don't see any excuse for the significant number of YLODs. I know the numbers that they show don't put the problem in the realm of the Xbox 360, but there should be some accountability on their end. I'm curious about the real numbers involved in their YLOD problem. I'm sure SCEA will never tell, though. I do love the PlayStation brand. I just think that in this gen, many of us loyal fans have been duped.

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GodGundamNT1

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In other news Boston Red Sox fan person punches a NY Yankee fan after the game. Really this is news? its obvious that rival companies will not say anything nice about the competition why is anyone surprised.

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barnold81

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I understand this guy's feelings about Nintendo the company as a whole, but considering there isn't really strong competition from Sony thus far in the portable market, I think talking about Nintendo that way with respect to the DS and 3DS is dumb. The DS is also making highly effective use of the stylus. And the best part is third parties are supporting the DS, mostly because it doesn't have great competition from Sony. The Wii on the other hand, is completely the opposite in my opinion.

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Draxargh

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And by demographic, I mean target. If you sit down and look at most of the shovelware on the DS, a lot of them are tailored tailored for children; but I'm not defending the guy, it was pretty dumb thing to say and probably pisses a lot of people off, but it's not going to change the fact that once the NGP is viable and has some solid games on it, I'll be shifting platforms once again (Did this with the DS, as well.)

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Draxargh

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LOL I think it's pretty funny, but the overall jist of what he's saying is that overall Nintendo's demographic is much younger. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm sitting here with my 3DS on my stomach and a laptop on my lap and I'm 26 and in the USCG (underway right now, had to have a handheld) playing Dragon Quest VI... but the only real reason I bought the 3DS is in prospect of that Metal Gear game and I want to finally play OoT. After that, I do intend on trading in for the NGP when it comes out.

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XenoLair

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I think its time to grow up Jack. I never herd Nintendo talk down on you.

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MamaLuigiBarrel

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@Skrapshak As far as I know, the problem was fixed in the newer, less costly PS3 Slims. But they removed the PS2 functionalities because they caused problems. I hear that they patented an adapter that allows PS2 emulation though, but nothing is confirmed.

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Skrapshak

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I loved my PS3 before it went Yellow on me a few weeks ago. I've been trying to rationalize giving Sony more money for something I already paid them $500 for that only lasted 2 years. Sony seems to be growing more delusional as time passes.

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Philly1UPer

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@LindBergh2007 pretty sure SEGA is never getting back into the console business. It would be pointless for them, because they have not created or even bothered the thought of creating a console in over 10 years and half of the games SEGA released on multiplatforms straight out sucked. I wish the rumor of a Dreamcast 2 was true, but sadly, I never see it happening.

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Philly1UPer

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@Rottenwood I must agree with you this one time and one time only.. The PS3 Move is just a Wiimote with a d*ldo head on it. I am a proud owner of a PS3, ill admit it has its flaws, just like the 360 has its flaws and the Wii has its own flaws. But people seem to forget, especially Tretton, that the Nintendo Wii was the main reason Sony woke up with bootmarks on their butt every morning when the sales figures came in. Sad but True.

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Philly1UPer

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Really...they released a Killzone on the PSP...and plenty of 20 somethings own a PSP. way to go on insulting your fanbase Tretton.

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ejay_kain

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well if the nintendo is babysitting, it is doing a great job. I had the original game boy when i was 5 years old, played tetris and mario over and over again....(thank technology we are able to save games these days). These days i still play on my GBA when i am bored (which is often) 22 YEARS OLD still rockin the pokemon games. Nintendo best babysitter ever!!!

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kpolicoff

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Douchebag. I brought my DS and my PSP on a flight end ended up playing the DS the whole flight.... then again, I'm not 20 something... I'm 30. I'll also add that just about every game that's come out for both the 360 and the PS3 has been reported (in many reviews) to look better and run better on the 360... even reviews with comparison screenshots show this. Oh.... right... but the PS3 is far superior? Oh... and what's the deal with the "only wave my arm 6 inches" bull????Are you SERIOUS? The Kinect tracks a huge range of FULL BODY motion... head... legs... everything. Oh. and the calibration test where you have to put your left arm out 45 degrees??? That doesn't work unless you stick your thumb out as shown in the picture.... that's some good precision right there. I just don't understand how someone can just lie around every corner, and then expect to be taken seriously in anyway... It's stuff like this that makes me steer clear of sony products. Oh... and who remembers when the PS3 came out and did NOT include force feedback? Do you remember what sony said? They said that "force feedback is so last generation". Yeah. Xbox 360 and wii had it... because they paid immersion for the technology they were using while Sony would not... so they ended up not using force feedback. Yeah... because it was sooooo last generation. Note that sony put out force feedback in their controllers... once they settled with immersion. They're so full of crap.

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jadefury27

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@Rottenwood: I agree with the comment about the ds for all ages but to say ps3 is in last place ridiculous. it's obvious that tretton is getting his "kevin butler" on in this interview. agree to disgaree i guess.

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Rottenwood

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Tough talk is hilarious when it comes from last place. Almost every one of my friends - all 30 and up - owns a DS. We don't worry about being seen as 'kiddie' when we use them because we're grown-ups who don't base our own personal image around which electronic devices we own. Last I checked, the DS just passed the PS2 as the greatest-selling console of all time... must be a whole lot of toddlers with Visa cards out there, eh? The fact that he doesn't "get" the Wii's success is exactly why Sony is playing catch-up, doing a knock-off peripheral of the very console he's mocking. Hilarious.

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wwlettsome

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Seems to me that Tretton's Japanese betters will be muzzling their stray dog shortly or he'll be quietly reassigned to something more suitable and a lot less public. It makes no sense to be calling out your competition like this publicly and it makes Sony look arrogant. Which is kind of bizarre considering their sales compared to their competition in this generation of consoles.

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drangel_jam

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As for 3D, get rid of glasses, and/or make it affordable. C'mon, $200 per pair? you kidding me? Plus, glasses with battery charge are even lamer.

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drangel_jam

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'Game Boy experience' is that it's a great babysitting tool, something young kids do on airplanes, but no self-respecting 20-something is going to be sitting on an airplane with one of those. He's too old for that." LOL He cracked me up with this one, no offense to adults who game on the DS.

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Zerabp

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@covertgamer Read the spec sheets dude very very very different levels of tech involved...

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musicman998

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K-Kow! Shazaam! Blaam! Boosh! Let the flames begin! Honestly though, Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony have been taking shots at each other for a while so chill. Shoot, remember when 3DO said the Genesis and Snes we're mere "toys"? Yeah.

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LindBergh2007

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Arrogance Sony. Arrogance. That's why there won't be a PS4 right there and why SEGA may be ready to take you down and return to the hardware business.

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Isayama

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Sony is a bunch of a**holes

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Karratti

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Easily one of the best flame-bait articles I've ever written. I own both a PS3 and a 360, but I really only use the Xbox for exclusives - Mass Effect, Portal, Limbo, Halo - And get the rest on my Playstation. Both systems are relatively identical, so I don't really get the point of arguing about it.

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Hezzron73

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I liked Tretton better when he was quiet and awkward. Like most have said, the PS3 is only picking up steam now because everyone already has the other 2 systems. When MS and Nintendo launch new consoles soon, PS3 sales will probably stall again. Silly Tretton, the `Gameboy`experience is for everyone! The PSP is for....well, uh.....store shelves i guess.

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rbereczki

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I have a PSP-1004, which I did like until it became mostly useless because of the thumb controller not centering. Tried replacing it a number of times but all I can find are cheap parts from Hong Kong which die within minutes after installation. The speakers died too, or so I thought, but replacing them didn't fix the problem so it's on the mobo, I guess. Both problems popped up just past warranty, of course.

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Evo8u

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@crono99x The only tech ps3 has over 360 is a bluray player. I can't stand people like you who come on here and try and say BS like I had a xbox on my coffee table 3 days before it came to market yeah sure u did, Then make some lame ass RROD comment. So typical of what a Sony fanboys says to try and make people believe what he is saying. The graphics card in the Ps3(dubbed RSX) is a 7800 gtx nvidia card that was completely outdated a yr before ps3 came out. I had one in my pc in 05. All u fanboys need to realize the ps3 is not going to get better in terms of graphics its over, Like jack or Sony r going to tell u that in an article. No they r going to keep feeding u BS to keep u buying their crap. Besides 360 has the best looking console game right now and u can go to IGN and see that the comment is on the review of Crisis 2. It just goes to show that Sony has blown smoke up peoples butt and a lot of u still believe it. The statement in this article above r just words from a company that is Pissed because they r getting beat down. Yeah in the end this yr sony will have released more exclusives but if you watch the market closely and the trends all of Sony's exclusives fall flat on their asses after about 2 to 3 weeks where 360 sales just keep going. Look at K3, and GT5 they got mediocre scores and K3 only made top 8 in sales 1st month out and last yr GT5 not even in top 10 and that was December. Tretton is a loser!!!

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GamerYnoX

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While it's true that cutting edge tech at launch is key for a long life cycle it's just wrong to lable other consoles as "toys" or "babysitting tools" just because they are inferior in tech. I love Sony but I'm always up for a Nintendo "Babysitting" :D

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woodyfr

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Come on this guy sucks, it's a moron. I don't care about Nintendo but if they make babysitting tools, I wonder why Sony did the same with the PS Move and their "fantastic glowing balls" !

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raghraghragh

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I don't really agree what he says, but I wish more executives would be this brazen more often. It's hilarious.

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pataponplayer

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NintendoChildren. Don't deny. It's 100% true what this man says.

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kyuss015

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I saw a 10 year old with a PSP at a Quikly the other day.

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covertgamer78

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@Zerabp There is no article ever written at any time about Xbox 360 ports being clearly superior because the two systems are almost identical like I said in my first post of this thread. Although I have seen pics in the past of the Xbox 360 detail level being a little higher than the PS3 version. I don't have a bias, I am telling you what I read. You are putting words in my mouth. If I have any bias, it is towards PC because my PC is far more powerful than the current gen consoles and the same ports of their games look far far better on my PC with a Xbox 360 controller in my hands no less. I may pick up some of these consoles when they become dirt cheap at the end of their lifespan but they don't interest me. You need to get out more, you are way too wrapped up in this. Can't wait for SSFIVAE for PC BTW, will soooooooo good on my PC. SFIV OWNS the console versions on my PC. I am so many frames over constant 60 FPS at max settings at 1920x1200 res that I can jack up the AA to 32x or even 64x.

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virtua_dave

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I am a huge fan of Sony, but...I'm a self-respecting 36-year-old, and I like my DS a lot more than my PSP. Just saying.

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TheLast1Left

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@FamousCalibur Don't forget Gears, Fable, Crackdown.

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FamousCalibur

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@TheLast1Left as much as i agree, ppl forget the reason the PS3 is so awesome is because of its exclusives, blu-ray and 3d ready with a simple software update. they are better than most other exclusives, besides mario halo and zelda off the top of my head

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traitor_651

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I am a PS3 fan, but honestly, this guy is a &^uche.

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TheLast1Left

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ha ha, this guys is an idiot. The only reason sales are picking up for the PS3 is because everyone already has the other two. I got the PS3 only for the BluRay player after they canceled the HD-DVD player on my 360. I do like some of the exclusive games on the PS3 but that is all. When I have a choice I go 360 every time. I love Zelda and Mario for the Nintendo systems. PSP is a POS. Sold mine have DSi and 3DS now. DSi is crap, 3DS is very cool but needs some games worth playing. I do not care about stroking the back of the PSP2 or NGP. I doubt I will get that. Don't get how he can rag on the Wii Mote when they made almost an exact replica in the Move. Oh and 3D gaming is on the 360 also. I am just waiting for Glasses Free TV's so I guess I will be playing that in like 3 - 4 more years.

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Atomic1977

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Im offended by what this guy is saying. Im 33 not a 20 something and I have taken my gameboy experience as they so call it on airplanes and other places. I am now a proud user and owner of the DSi XL.

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Jurassic85

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@SicklySunStorm I'm pretty sure the comment about SNES being garbage due to lack of a hard drive was sarcasm to prove just how silly Tretton's comments are. Sony is really digging themselves a hole. They've turned off a lot of the gaming community with the Hotz lawsuit, they had the "Annonymous" group attacking their system last week, and now Tretton makes comments to insult the 20-something fanbase that makes up a huge portion of their sales. Does he not realize that this is not an either/or thing. Many gamers have more than one console, genius. You can't insult that group or they will be less likely to buy from you again.

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thenephariouson

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He sounds a little bitter to me.

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PixelAddict

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Jack Tretton, staying classy. He has no clue. The PS3's future buyers are almost ENTIRELY made up of people who own 1-2 of the OTHER consoles!!! Why offend them?! Whatta tool.

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