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PlayStation Home

PlayStation Home

Overview
PlayStation Home is a virtual 3D social gaming network developed by Sony Computer Entertainment
Sony Computer Entertainment
Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. is a major video game company specializing in a variety of areas in the video game industry, and is a wholly owned subsidiary and part of the Consumer Products & Services Group of Sony...

's London Studio
SCE London Studio
London Studio is an in-house Sony Computer Entertainment developer located in London. Established in 1993, London Studio is Sony Computer Entertainment Europe’s largest internal development studio, with staff working in a purpose designed 7-storey building located in London's Soho district...

 for the PlayStation 3
PlayStation 3
The is the third home video game console produced by Sony Computer Entertainment and the successor to the PlayStation 2 as part of the PlayStation series. The PlayStation 3 competes with Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Nintendo's Wii as part of the seventh generation of video game consoles...

 on the PlayStation Network (PSN). It is available directly from the PlayStation 3 XrossMediaBar under PlayStation Network. Membership is free, and only requires a PSN account. Home has been in development since early 2005 and started an open public beta test on December 11, 2008.

Home allows users to create a custom avatar
Avatar (computing)
In computing, an avatar is the graphical representation of the user or the user's alter ego or character. It may take either a three-dimensional form, as in games or virtual worlds, or a two-dimensional form as an icon in Internet forums and other online communities. It can also refer to a text...

, which can be groomed realistically.
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Encyclopedia
PlayStation Home is a virtual 3D social gaming network developed by Sony Computer Entertainment
Sony Computer Entertainment
Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. is a major video game company specializing in a variety of areas in the video game industry, and is a wholly owned subsidiary and part of the Consumer Products & Services Group of Sony...

's London Studio
SCE London Studio
London Studio is an in-house Sony Computer Entertainment developer located in London. Established in 1993, London Studio is Sony Computer Entertainment Europe’s largest internal development studio, with staff working in a purpose designed 7-storey building located in London's Soho district...

 for the PlayStation 3
PlayStation 3
The is the third home video game console produced by Sony Computer Entertainment and the successor to the PlayStation 2 as part of the PlayStation series. The PlayStation 3 competes with Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Nintendo's Wii as part of the seventh generation of video game consoles...

 on the PlayStation Network (PSN). It is available directly from the PlayStation 3 XrossMediaBar under PlayStation Network. Membership is free, and only requires a PSN account. Home has been in development since early 2005 and started an open public beta test on December 11, 2008.

Home allows users to create a custom avatar
Avatar (computing)
In computing, an avatar is the graphical representation of the user or the user's alter ego or character. It may take either a three-dimensional form, as in games or virtual worlds, or a two-dimensional form as an icon in Internet forums and other online communities. It can also refer to a text...

, which can be groomed realistically. Users can decorate their avatar's personal apartment with default, bought, or won items. Users can travel throughout the Home world and Home constantly updated by Sony and partners. Each part of the world is known as a space. Public spaces are made for display, entertainment, advertising, or for meeting people. Home features many single and multi-player mini-games. Users can shop for or win new items to further customise their avatar or apartments. Home's primary forms of advertising include spaces themselves, video screens, posters and mini-games. Home hosts a variety of special events which range from prize-giving events to entertaining events. Users can also use Home to connect with friends and meet new people. Upon installation, users can choose how much hard disk space they wish to reserve for Home (3, 5, 8, or 12 GB).

History



PlayStation Home (or Home), originally named 'Hub', started as a 2D online lobby for the PlayStation 2
PlayStation 2
The PlayStation 2 is a sixth-generation video game console manufactured by Sony as part of the PlayStation series. Its development was announced in March 1999 and it was first released on March 4, 2000, in Japan...

 game, The Getaway: Black Monday
The Getaway: Black Monday
The Getaway: Black Monday is an open world action video game, developed by SCE London Studio and distributed by Team Soho, it was released in 2004 for the PlayStation 2. It is set in London and take its cues from British gangster movies such as Get Carter, The Long Good Friday and Lock, Stock and...

. However, the online userbase for the PlayStation 2 was too small and the project was never completed before the release of the PlayStation 3, at which point the developers began porting code to the new platform. Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison is the former British corporate executive and a representative director of Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. and Executive Vice President of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe . At E3 in 2005 he showcased the first public realtime demonstrations of PlayStation 3 development hardware...

, then president of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios, liked the idea of having a virtual 3D community hub for PlayStation gamers, and transferred the project to become PlayStation Home. In a 2007 keynote speech, Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison is the former British corporate executive and a representative director of Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. and Executive Vice President of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe . At E3 in 2005 he showcased the first public realtime demonstrations of PlayStation 3 development hardware...

 used the term "Game 3.0" to describe the service.

An online-based service had been the subject of speculation since the launch of the PlayStation Network. Sony had expressed interest in such a service, specifically trophies (known at the time as "entitlements") for first-party titles. PlayStation Home, as a feature, was first publicly mentioned in an interview with NG-Gamer. This was later detailed by Kotaku and finally confirmed by NG-Gamer. It was officially announced by Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison is the former British corporate executive and a representative director of Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. and Executive Vice President of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe . At E3 in 2005 he showcased the first public realtime demonstrations of PlayStation 3 development hardware...

 on March 7, 2007, during his keynote speech at the 2007 Game Developers Conference
Game Developers Conference
The Game Developers Conference is the largest annual gathering of professional video game developers, focusing on learning, inspiration, and networking...

 and was originally scheduled for a global public release in October 2007.

Home was delayed and expanded several times before initially releasing. Invitations to the closed beta were offered to winners of a weekly Warhawk
Warhawk (PlayStation 3 game)
Warhawk is a quick-paced multiplayer third-person shooter, vehicle and flight combat game developed by Incognito Entertainment exclusively for the PlayStation 3. It is a remake of an aerial warfare game of the same name, which was a launch title on the original PlayStation. Apart from the...

online gaming event. Kazuo Hirai
Kazuo Hirai
is the Representative Corporate Executive Officer and Executive Deputy President of Sony Corporation, concurrently serving as president of the Consumer Products & Services Group, which includes all of Sony's consumer electronics and networked service businesses...

, President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., stated that "Spending more time on the development and on the Closed Beta testing reaffirms our commitment to bringing a quality service, maintaining the PlayStation tradition".
In July 2008, further invitations were sent to some Home XMB theme downloaders in Japan and North America. SCEE and SCEHK did the same, but without releasing a Home XMB theme. Users who purchased more than HK$60 or SG$12 worth of content in a single transaction over the PlayStation Store
PlayStation Store
The PlayStation Store is an online virtual market available to users of Sony's PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable game consoles via the PlayStation Network. The Store offers a range of downloadable content both for purchase and available free of charge. Available content includes full games,...

 from August 29 to September 12, 2008 were also invited.
In November 2008, SCEA invited annual Qore
Qore (PlayStation Network)
Qore is a subscription-based interactive online magazine for the PlayStation Network and replaces the Jampack series of disks offered by PlayStation Underground. Currently only available in North America, the service offers high definition videos, interviews, and behind-the-scenes footage...

 subscribers.
After major version 1.0, invitations were sent worldwide.

The Open Beta test began on December 11, 2008. In March 2009, the world's first console-based and virtual world-based ARG was released called Xi
Xi (alternate reality game)
Xi was the world's first console-based and virtual world-based alternate reality game.It was a one-time-only play, unfolding in real time, and only available on the PlayStation 3 through the social gaming network, PlayStation Home...

, made by nDreams
NDreams
nDreams, Ltd. is a video game developing company located in Farnborough, Hampshire in the United Kingdom. The company was formed in August 2006 thanks to former SCi/Eidos creative director, Patrick O'Luanaigh. nDreams was listed in Develop magazine as one of the hot companies to look for in 2008...

, that involved users to find clues in Home and in the real world. In June 2009, Peter Edwards, Director of Home for SCEE, reported that the number of users exceeded 7 million and that 80% of users are male aged 18–35. At TGS 2009
Tokyo Game Show
The , commonly known as TGS, is a video game expo / convention held annually in the Makuhari Messe, in Chiba, Japan. It is presented by the Computer Entertainment Supplier's Association and the Nikkei Business Publications, Inc...

, Kaz Hirai announced that Home has been downloaded by 8 million users. Jack Buser, Director of Home for SCEA, stated that, "we quite like the name 'open beta,' so you can expect us to stay in open beta for some time." In a Eurogamer
Eurogamer
Eurogamer is a Brighton-based website focused on video games news, reviews, previews and interviews. It is operated by Eurogamer Network Ltd., which was formed in 1999 by brothers Rupert and Nick Loman. Eurogamer has grown to become one of the most important European-based websites focused on...

 interview with Peter Edwards on July 24, 2009, Edwards commented that the service will no longer be beta when it "represents a kind of final quality." On October 14, 2009, Jack Buser announced that "the vision of Home has evolved." He said that originally, they were building Home as a "social network for gamers", but it has now developed into a "game platform, first and foremost." December 11, 2009 marked the one year anniversary of the Open Beta, with events to correspond.

On December 17, 2009, SCEA released its first in-Home Massively multiplayer online game
Massively multiplayer online game
A massively multiplayer online game is a multiplayer video game which is capable of supporting hundreds or thousands of players simultaneously. By necessity, they are played on the Internet, and usually feature at least one persistent world. They are, however, not necessarily games played on...

, produced specifically for Home. The game is called Sodium
Sodium (PlayStation Home)
Sodium is a massively multiplayer online game based in and exclusive to the PlayStation 3's online community-based social gaming network PlayStation Home. Sodium is a four part series of games, two of which have been released...

and is a series of games, the first being Sodium One. This makes the second game produced specifically for Home, the first being the ARG Xi.

In February 2010, it was reported that emails were sent out to a select few PlayStation Home members inviting them to participate in a new private beta test for the service. This beta is to "test and obtain feedback on changes that have been made based on suggestions by PS Home Community." On

On June 10, 2010, the first global public space was released in the Home Open Beta allowing all users from the Asian, European, Japanese, and North American Homes to converge in one space. In terms of numbers, it was 14 million users (at the time) from the 32 countries that have access to Home. This space was the "FevaArena Global Pitch Area" which was dedicated to the 2010 FIFA World Cup
2010 FIFA World Cup
The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup, the world championship for men's national association football teams. It took place in South Africa from 11 June to 11 July 2010...

 supported by Sony
Sony
, commonly referred to as Sony, is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Minato, Tokyo, Japan and the world's fifth largest media conglomerate measured by revenues....

. This space allowed all of Home's users to participate in events, mini-games, and celebrate the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

From June 15 to June 24, 2010, for the first time in the Home Open Beta, Sony released a virtual replica of their E3 2010 booth in all versions of Home. At this "E3 2010 Virtual Booth", users could watch videos of seven different games previewed at E3. In addition, if users gained access to the VIP area by watching all seven videos, they got the chance to look at a behind-the-scenes video of a new PlayStation Home space ("The Playground"). Virtual rewards were also rewarded for watching all seven videos as well as for visiting the space on June 15, 16, and 17th. The virtual E3 booth (slightly modified for 2011's displays) returned the following year with previews of seven different games and the PlayStation Vita (with virtual rewards for watching the videos as well as a demo of a new PlayStation Home game, "Scribble Shooter"). In addition, for the first time in Home, Sony's E3 press conference was streamed live in PlayStation Home in a special virtual theater, as well as other live interviews that occurred during the week of E3 2011.

December 11, 2010 marked the two year anniversary of the PlayStation Home Open Beta. Since Home's release on December 11, 2008, the amount of users has went from 0.2 million to 17 million, originally nine games to 236 games, originally 114 virtual items to 7,000 virtual items, and originally 25 events to 600 events.

First announced at GDC 2011, PlayStation Home core client update version 1.50, released on April 20, 2011, includes tools and features that will enable developers to expand the types of games possible on the platform. Version 1.50 introduces real-time multiplayer, improved physics and graphics, greater control over collision detection and much more as part of a suite of new technology that developers can use to create connected gaming experiences. The first utilization of these new tools and features is with Lockwood Publishing's follow up to Sodium One, Sodium 2: Project Velocity.
First announced in August 2011 and released on November 3, 2011, a new core experience for PlayStation Home was released featuring a “hub and districts” design that will help users find games, people and places that fit their favorite game genres. The design features a new Hub (replacing the Central Plaza/Home Square) that integrates games, quests, community events, and user-generated content, while providing users with additional navigation, shopping, socialization and entertainment options. The new Hub will bring a variety of games right to the center of Home, including Cogs
Cogs (video game)
-Gameplay:Cogs is built on a number of puzzles that mimic sliding block puzzles. Each level, representing some three-dimensional object, has various objectives, but generally involve moving tiles to connect sets of gears, piping, and other physical elements to make that object behave in a specific...

from Lazy 8 Studios which will be featured on day one. The Hub will also feature a new Activity Board filled with games to play, rewards to be won, a new UGC events system, and other stuff. Powering the Activity Board is a new questing system that transforms Home itself into a game if the user so chooses. From frequently updated community activities to narrative adventures, this questing system will provide game play options delivered to users in new ways not seen in Home. Additionally, surrounding the Hub will be districts based on game genres to suit the users mood.

On November 18, 2011, for the first time in PlayStation Home, users can now watch full length movies for free with their friends thanks to Crackle
Crackle
Crackle is a digital network and studio, featuring commercially supported streaming video content in Flash Video format. It is owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment, and its content consists primarily of Sony's library of films and television shows...

 via Loot. The movies are available on all Loot EOD screens, which are featured in the "LOOT EOD Theater", and the "Sunset Yacht" and "Hollywood Hills House" personal spaces.

Operation


Home is in third person, users walk or jog in that way. Upon entering Home, users are greeted with the "Message of the Day" and the [Navigator] menu. It contains administrative information such as upcoming updates, events, and event winners.

User Interface


PlayStation Home has no HUD
HUD (video gaming)
In video gaming, the HUD is the method by which information is visually relayed to the player as part of a game's user interface...

, however, all of Home’s features are available from the controller. The options are: Quick Chat, a Gestures menu, the Menu Pad, the Safe Screen, and in-game XMB. In time, users will be able to play music on their PlayStation 3 hard drive. Whether this will be private or can be heard by others will be determined by licensing issues that Sony is attempting to resolve.

The "Menu Pad" (formerly, a virtual PSP, pre-Open Beta), as of v1.40, has three main categories – "Go to Wardrobe" (allowing users to change their avatars appearance), the "Navigator", and "Options". The Options category has twelve options including a Help menu for beginners. The Menu Pad, under Options, features an inventory, which has portable objects such as the “Bubble machine”. Users can take screenshots of Home in either first or third person view with the camera and save them to their PS3's HDD. In time, items will be released as limited quantity items, such as the shrinking potion. Users can only use these items a limited number of times before having to repurchase. The "Safe Screen" is used for reporting, changing communication settings, and quick access to the user’s Personal Space and XMB
XrossMediaBar
The XrossMediaBar is a graphical user interface developed by Sony Computer Entertainment. The interface features icons that are spread horizontally across the screen. Navigation moves the icons, instead of a cursor. These icons are used as categories to organize the options available to the user...

 friends list.

The "Navigator", presented like the XMB, features the former world map. It sorts locations by General, Featured, Favourites, Personal or the location of friends in Europe, and by My Home (apartments, clubs, and friends), New and Recommended, Featured Games, Shop (stores in The Mall), and Explore in North America. The Navigator is the main menu when Home is started up, and can be accessed at any time via the Menu Pad.

Communication


Users can communicate in a variety of ways in Home. Along with the existing PSN messaging system, users are able to write text messages to each other using either a physical or on-screen keyboard
Virtual keyboard
A virtual keyboard is a software component that allows a user to enter characters. A virtual keyboard can usually be operated with multiple input devices, which may include a touchscreen, an actual keyboard and a computer mouse.- Types :...

. These messages appear in speech bubbles
Speech balloon
Speech balloons are a graphic convention used most commonly in comic books, comic strips and cartoons to allow words to be understood as representing the speech or thoughts of a given character in the comic...

 over the avatar's head and in the 'chat log'. V1.40 now allows users to switch between text chat and voice chat in the chat log. Voice chat, with the use of a headset, is available within personal spaces and clubs or by making a 'Phone call' to a specific user. As of v1.40, users can now privately voice chat with groups of up to 8 users on their own voice chat channel. The user can also perform visible gestures (or "e-motes") such as waving, nodding or dancing. A 'Quick chat' feature, which has predetermined phrases, is also available. Users can also indicate the status of their avatar, which is displayed below their name (e.g. Normal, Happy, Sad, etc.).

Economy


Although the service itself can be used free of charge, premium content is available to purchase from various stores in the shopping complex and in certain spaces. Users browse and pay for items, such as virtual clothing and furniture, by accessing a shop and using its PlayStation Store
PlayStation Store
The PlayStation Store is an online virtual market available to users of Sony's PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable game consoles via the PlayStation Network. The Store offers a range of downloadable content both for purchase and available free of charge. Available content includes full games,...

 interface. Items are paid for in real currency using funds from the user's PlayStation Network Wallet. Alongside content designed by SCE, actual companies are also able to sell virtual goods through their own stores in Home. For example, Diesel
Diesel (clothing company)
Diesel S.p.A. is an Italian design company. It is best known for luxury, pret-a-porter clothing aimed at the young adult market. The company is owned by its founder Renzo Rosso, and is based in Breganze in northern Italy.-History:...

, Ligne Roset
Ligne Roset
Ligne Roset is a French modern furniture company that has over 200 stores and more than 1,000 retail distributors worldwide. The company was founded by Antoine Roset in 1860 in Montagnieu, France as a small business manufacturing bentwood walking sticks...

, and Game
GAME (retailer)
The Game Group plc is a British video games retail company. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE SmallCap Index....

 are represented in Home with their own stores where users can purchase virtual items based on their companies’ own clothing and furniture designs respectively.

Advertising
In-game advertising
In-game advertising refers to advertising in computer and video games. IGA differs from advergaming, which refers to a game specifically made to advertise a product.The IGA industry is large and growing...

 is prominent in Home’s public spaces. Currently, this is primarily PlayStation focused although other video gaming-related brands are also represented. Most advertising is targeted to specific regional audiences.

Demonstrated at the CESA
Computer Entertainment Supplier's Association
Computer Entertainment Supplier's Association is a Japanese organization that was established in 1996 to "promote the computer entertainment industry [...] with the aim of contributing to the strengthening of Japanese industry as well as to the further enrichment of people's lifestyles." It...

 Developers Conference 2009 by Masami Kando, "a future update will allow users to load up the PlayStation Store directly from Home." "This", he said, "will allow you to do such things as download demos from PlayStation Home via PlayStation Store and play online with friends". The presentation also offered a look at a variety of Home technology demos including synchronized playback of multimedia content; the player was able to access a virtual media player whose menu contained listings for real net radio and pod casts. Additionally, the player's virtual Bravia set was made to show commercials. In both instances, users were able to enjoy the content with their friends. The second demonstration showed a pet robot walking about a player's personal space. The player could do actions that the pet would respond to. Kando pointed out that "this system allows for single players to enjoy themselves and does not require a keyboard." Additionally, the robot could be used to offer pertinent information to the user.

Pre-order bonuses


One of the ways Sony has used advertising in the North American Home is with pre-order bonuses for PS3 games, mainly from Amazon.com
Amazon.com
Amazon.com, Inc. is a multinational electronic commerce company headquartered in Seattle, Washington, United States. It is the world's largest online retailer. Amazon has separate websites for the following countries: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, and...

. The first Home pre-order bonus was for the PS3 exclusive Killzone 2. Users in the North American Home who pre-ordered Killzone 2 from Amazon.com received free I.S.A. and Helghast costumes for their avatar. Also, on February 16, 2009, if users located a Helghast soldier in the North American Home, they were granted access to the Killzone 2 demo. Other Amazon.com pre-orders bonuses include inFamous
InFamous
Infamous, stylized as inFAMOUS or inFamous, is an open world video game for the PlayStation 3 video game console. It was developed by Sucker Punch Productions and published by Sony Computer Entertainment...

("Reaper" costume), Darksiders ("Ruin Head Mask" and "War Armor"), MAG ("S.V.E.R. Barracks" personal space), and BioShock 2
BioShock 2
BioShock 2 is a first-person shooter video game developed by 2K Marin for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The sequel to the 2007 video game BioShock, it was released worldwide on February 9, 2010....

("Big Daddy" costume).

As part of a new "Total Game Integration" (TGI) for pre-order bonuses from Amazon.com, users can now pre-order the promoted game from within PlayStation Home (users must pre-order from within PlayStation Home to receive the pre-order bonus). In addtion, the Central Plaza is redesigned for the promoted game and includes a mini-game, with Home rewards, which upon 100% completion will grant the users an in-game bonus (e.g. 3 Unlock Points for Killzone 3's multiplayer). The first game to utilize the Total Game Integration was for the PS3 exclusive Killzone 3
Killzone 3
Killzone 3 is a 2011 first-person shooter for the PlayStation 3, developed by Guerrilla Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. It is the fourth installment in the Killzone series, the first game in the series to be presented in 3D and the first to include motion controls using the...

("Helghast Jetpack" with flying action). The second TGI pre-order was for Dead Island
Dead Island
Dead Island is a first person horror action-adventure video game developed by Techland and published by Deep Silver for Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3. It is centered on the challenge of survival on a zombie-infested open world island with a major emphasis on melee combat. It was...

("Exploding Zombie Outfit" with exploding action). The current TGI pre-order is for Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception
Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception is the third game in the Uncharted series, created by Naughty Dog for the PlayStation 3, and was released in North America on November 1, 2011, Europe on November 2, 2011 and Australia on November 3, 2011. It is the sequel to 2009's Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. It was...

("Nathan Drake" costume with gun firing action). Unlike the previous two games, Uncharted 3 features a limited time game space, called "Fortune Hunter", specifically designed for the Total Game Integration. The mini-game utilizes the entire space which is a partial recreation of the Yemen level from the Uncharted 3 multiplayer.

Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time
Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time
Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time is a platform game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3 video game console...

also received a pre-order bonus, however, its bonus was from Game Crazy. If users pre-ordered the "Space Package" for the game, users received a PlayStation Home Avatar Skin (t-shirt).

The vouchers for the Amazon.com pre-order bonuses are sent out within ten days after the games release and expire 90 days after the games release. The European and Japanese versions of Home also had chances to get these pre-order costumes as well but through different pre-order promotions and events.

PlayStation Home TV


On December 23, 2009, SCEE launched PlayStation Home TV to the European Home. Home TV features the latest news about forthcoming Home releases and events. If users have a community event they think should be featured in Home TV, or any other news, they can email Home TV. New episodes of Home TV will be released monthly. Episodes of Home TV are featured in Europe's Home Theatre.

Avatar and Personal Spaces


Users are given an avatar and an invitation-only apartment which they can personalise with their own choice of decor and furnishings. The user's avatar is the means of travel and communication. The user's personal spaces and clubs are means of expressing their selves and meeting new people and friends alike.

Avatar


Users can create their own avatar or use one of several preset avatars available in Home. Users can access the Wardrobe from the Menu Pad at any time and location except when in another user's personal apartment. They may customise a variety of the characters features including gender, skin tone, hair, body shape and facial structure. They may also customise their avatar's clothing and accessories using a set of standard items, items bought from one of the clothing shops in Home's shopping complex, or won items from Home's mini-games or PS3 games that support Home rewards. As of v1.50 users have the ability to save up to twenty-four versions of their avatar for quick access at any time. As of v1.40, users can now have two sections in their wardrobe. One is the main wardrobe for frequently used items (capacity of 500 items), and the other is the storage for less frequently used items. New items are also marked accordingly. Users can also filter the wardrobe view to only display favourite items, purchased items, rewards or recently acquired items.

Personal Spaces


Each user has a Personal Space, which they can modify and change any time they are in it. The initial basic apartment, the Harbour Studio (a studio overlooking a harbour), is free and offers users limited options, such as a 50 item limit, for customisation and personalisation. Users may invite any other Home user (even cross-region, unless space is region exclusive) to their Personal Space. Audio and video may be enabled in the future. Users can also place their own digital photographs in picture frames to display on the wall of their apartment; this feature is currently available to the Asian, Japanese, and North American versions. While the Harbour Studio and basic furniture is provided to all users free of charge, premium Personal Spaces, dedicated furniture for the premium Personal Spaces, and other furniture is available to purchase from shopping stores. Some furniture and decorative ornaments (or even entire personal spaces) can be won from the mini-games in Home and PS3 games that support Home rewards. As of November 18, 2011, Home users can watch a variety of full length movies for free with their friends on all Loot EOD screens which are featured in the Sunset Yacht and Hollywood Hills House personal spaces, as well as the "Loot EOD Theater", thanks to Crackle
Crackle
Crackle is a digital network and studio, featuring commercially supported streaming video content in Flash Video format. It is owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment, and its content consists primarily of Sony's library of films and television shows...

.

Premium personal spaces are available from the Home Estates store in Home's shopping complex. The first premium personal space was the Summer House. Various premium apartments are available to all of the regions, however, some are region exclusive. For example, the Post Apocalypse Apartment is exclusive to North America. There are also a few that are only available to Europe and North America. The Neptune Suite, exclusive to Europe and North America, was the first premium personal space to feature a mini-game, be underwater, and feature an interactive pet. Sony has released many premium personal spaces for Home, from both first party and third party developers, with more to come. Loot's Sunset Yacht (formerly Amaterasu Yacht) personal space is the first personal space to allow users to set the mood of the personal space (e.g. sunrise, sunset, day, night).

Games can also have premium apartments based on them. The Visari Throne Room is based on Visari's Throne Room from the last level of Killzone 2. Users who own Batman: Arkham Asylum
Batman: Arkham Asylum
Batman: Arkham Asylum is a 2009 action-adventure stealth video game based on DC Comics' Batman developed for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows. It was developed by Rocksteady Studios and published by Eidos Interactive in conjunction with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment...

can unlock a special Batman: Arkham Asylum Batcave Outpost personal apartment. Users who pre-ordered MAG from Amazon.com received an S.V.E.R. PlayStation Home Personal Space, called the S.V.E.R. Barracks (another personal space has been released for MAG). Other games with game-based Premium Personal spaces include: MotorStorm
MotorStorm
MotorStorm is a 2006 racing video game developed by Evolution Studios and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the Sony PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system. First announced at E3 2005, the game was released in Japan on 14 December 2006 and the rest of the world in March 2007....

, MotorStorm: Pacific Rift
MotorStorm: Pacific Rift
MotorStorm: Pacific Rift is a racing video game by Evolution Studios and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3. It is the sequel to MotorStorm and is followed by MotorStorm: Arctic Edge for the PS2/PSP, and MotorStorm: Apocalypse...

, Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time
Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time
Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time is a platform game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3 video game console...

, Warhawk, LocoRoco
LocoRoco
is a platform video game released worldwide in 2006 for the PlayStation Portable handheld game console, and developed and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. The game was developed by Tsutomu Kouno, striving to create a game that was different than other titles being released for the PSP at...

, Final Fantasy XIII
Final Fantasy XIII
is a console role-playing video game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 3 and the Xbox 360. Released in 2009 in Japan and 2010 in North America and PAL regions, it is the thirteenth major installment in the Final Fantasy series...

, The Secret of Monkey Island, Assassin's Creed II
Assassin's Creed II
Assassin's Creed II is a historical third-person action-adventure video game developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X. It is the second video game installment of the Assassin's Creed series, and is a sequel to the 2007 video...

, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is an action-adventure platform third-person shooter video game developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3. It is the sequel to the 2007 game Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. It was first shown and announced on December 1, 2008...

, LittleBigPlanet
LittleBigPlanet
LittleBigPlanet, commonly abbreviated LBP, is a puzzle platformer video game, based on user-generated content, for the PlayStation 3 first announced on 7 March 2007, by Phil Harrison at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, California...

, Bioshock 2
BioShock 2
BioShock 2 is a first-person shooter video game developed by 2K Marin for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The sequel to the 2007 video game BioShock, it was released worldwide on February 9, 2010....

, Toy Story 3: The Video Game
Toy Story 3: The Video Game
Toy Story 3: The Video Game is a platform video game loosely based on the film Toy Story 3. It was published by Disney Interactive Studios and developed by Avalanche Software , Asobo Studio and n-Space...

, Sodium
Sodium (PlayStation Home)
Sodium is a massively multiplayer online game based in and exclusive to the PlayStation 3's online community-based social gaming network PlayStation Home. Sodium is a four part series of games, two of which have been released...

, Tron: Evolution
Tron: Evolution
Tron: Evolution is a third-person action-adventure, tie-in video game for the film Tron: Legacy by Propaganda Games, published by Disney Interactive. It was officially announced at the Spike Video Game Awards and was released for the Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable and Xbox...

, and Def Jam Rapstar
Def Jam Rapstar
Def Jam Rapstar is a rapping game produced by 4mm Games and developed by Terminal Reality. The game was released on October 5, 2010 in the United States of America , and released on November 26, 2010 in Europe. An official launch event was held at New York's Hudson hotel on October 6, 2010 to...

.

Sony has given users the chance to get free apartments on some occasions. The Chamber Apartment was the first and was only available from May 14, 2009 to May 21, 2009 in the North American Home. The Tree House Personal Apartment was for the celebration of the first anniversary of the PlayStation Home Open Beta (December 11, 2009) and was available for free from December 10, 2009 to December 23, 2009 in the European Home. Users now have to purchase the space from Home Estates. The Final Fantasy XIII personal space, the "Eden - Primarch's Vigilarium", was avaialble for free in celebration of the launch of Final Fantasy XIII in Japan from December 17, 2009 until January 13, 2010. Now users must purchase this space from Home Estates.

Heavy Water is responsible for making the Chamber Apartment, the Post-Apocalypse Apartment, and the Wizard's Den. They have released the most content for Home to date than any other development studio.

The PlayStation Home Mansion (North America) is Home's first expandable personal space. There are a total of four spaces for the mansion (First Floor, Infinity Pool, Second Floor, and Garage) that come with exclusive furniture items as well as a gift machine that lets the owner give guests one of the exclusive furniture items. Two of these spaces also come with exclusive clothing items. The First Floor also features a pet tiger (named Markus) and the Second Floor features a billiards pool table (American Pool).

Clubs


Users are able to purchase and form a club. Currently, there is only one club to purchase- the Basic Clubhouse. Each club has a leader (the user who purchased the club) who can elect up to 4 sub-leaders and can have up to 32 members in total. A user can only be a member of up to five clubs and if the user owns a club, they can only be a member of up to four clubs. Also, a user can only own one club. In a similar way to Personal Spaces, the club's owner is able to set up and decorate a private clubhouse as a meeting point for club members. The clubhouse also features a notice board where the leader can post messages and announcements to other members. There is also a video screen in the clubhouse that has currently only played two interviews from the directors and actors of the films Watchmen
Watchmen (film)
Watchmen is a 2009 superhero film directed by Zack Snyder and starring Malin Åkerman, Billy Crudup, Matthew Goode, Jackie Earle Haley, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, and Patrick Wilson. It is an adaptation of the comic book of the same name by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons...

and Star Trek. Japan's clubhouse video screen has the option to access a Home members page after they've entered their PSN info. With v1.30, users can now blacklist other users from being a member of their club.

On December 2, 2010, a new club was released in Europe exclusively for PlayStation Plus subscribers; users must be PlayStation Plus subscribers to access the space, the club cannot be purchased. The PlayStation Plus Private Members Club is a stylish bar area décored in black and gold, with alcoves for socialising. The space offers several tables of "Shed", a two to four player card game with special rewards. The space also offers ways for Plus subscribers to stay updated on all the latest PS Plus news, either by reviewing a cocktail menu or watching the trailers running on the big screen.

Stage Sets from Loot


Stage Sets are premium personal spaces where users, if they have a video capture system, can make their own machinima
Machinima
Machinima is the use of real-time 3D computer graphics rendering engines to create a cinematic production. Most often, video games are used to generate the computer animation...

s in Home. The Stage Sets are created by Loot
Sony Pictures Loot
Sony Pictures Loot is a newly formed group of developers of Sony Pictures Entertainment that creates experiences and products for PlayStation Home...

, a newly formed group of developers from Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc. is the television and film production/distribution unit of Japanese multinational technology and media conglomerate Sony...

 that creates experiences and products for Home. Loot had originally only made the Stage Sets available to the North American version until April 15, 2010 when the Ghostbusters Firehouse was released to the European version. Loot also has an array of items available at their Loot store in the shopping complex.

The first Stage Set, the Living Room Stage Set from Loot, is loaded with interactive lights, cameras, backdrops and film-related equipment to simulate a real-life studio production environment. The lighting and camera systems allow for a wide range of desired angles, movements, transitions, cuts and lens set-ups that allow users to take control of the technical and artistic aspects. Combined with twelve props and a director's t-shirt that come with the space to decorate the set, users have access to the tools necessary to create their own film when hooked up to a video capture system. This Stage Set was released on May 7, 2009.

The second Stage Set to be released from Loot in joint with Atari
Atari
Atari is a corporate and brand name owned by several entities since its inception in 1972. It is currently owned by Atari Interactive, a wholly owned subsidiary of the French publisher Atari, SA . The original Atari, Inc. was founded in 1972 by Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney. It was a pioneer in...

 and Terminal Reality
Terminal Reality
Terminal Reality is a video game development and production company based in Lewisville, Texas. Founded in 1994 by ex-Microsoft employee Mark Randel and former Mallard Software general manager Brett Combs, Terminal Reality develops a variety of games including racing games , 3D action games , and...

 is the Ghostbusters Firehouse (originally named Ghostbusters Firehouse: On Location). This space is dedicated to the 25th anniversary of Ghostbusters
Ghostbusters
Ghostbusters is a 1984 American science fiction comedy film directed by Ivan Reitman and written by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis. The film stars Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Sigourney Weaver, Harold Ramis, and Rick Moranis and follows three eccentric parapsychologists in New York City, who start a...

and its worldwide release on Blu-ray on June 18, 2009. The Firehouse personal space is a detailed replica of the three floor Ghostbusters’ headquarters from the original film. It comes complete with the ghost containment unit in the basement, the garage and office areas on the 1st floor, plus the living room, laboratory, fire poles, bedroom and bathroom areas. It comes with the Living Room Stage Set's camera functionality, film props and portable blue screens. Users can, through the use of an external special effects/compositing programs, create images of their avatar driving the film's Ecto-1 vehicle in their own machinima films. Users are also able to fly around as Slimer, a character from the film. Twenty-one furniture items and ornaments and a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man headwear for users avatars also comes with the purchase of the space. Ghostbusters costumes, other ornaments, and t-shirts from Loot are available at the shopping complex. This Stage Set was made available to North America on June 18, 2009 and Europe on April 15, 2010.

The third Stage Set to be released from Loot is the Modular Stage Set 3. This Stage Set lets users control over three enormous retractable backdrops, which can be set to different chroma key colors with motion track markers. The stage light system offers two additional flood lights for defining the right mood of each take and the floor can also be set to different materials and colors. This Stage Set is available in the "Ultimate Machinima" bundle (along with the "Talk Show" bundle – a collection of props that allows users to dress their personal space like a talk show) as well as separate. This Stage Set was released on November 25, 2010 in both Europe and North America.

Public Spaces


There are four different versions of Home: Asia
Asia
Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres. It covers 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area and with approximately 3.879 billion people, it hosts 60% of the world's current human population...

, Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

, Japan
Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

, and North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

. Countries join whichever SCE
SCE
SCE is an abbreviation with multiple meanings:* Short-channel effect, a secondary effect describing the reduction in threshold voltage Vth in MOSFETs with non-uniformly doped channel regions as the gate length increases...

 division they are under. Japan is the only country with its own version of Home. Each region has different features as well as some similar ones. SCEHK operates the Asian Home, SCEE operates the European Home, SCEJ operates the Japanese Home, and SCEA operates the North American Home.

"Spaces" on the Navigator are broken-up into categories based on the Spaces' publisher, purpose, or personal spaces. Home consists of locations from Sony Computer Entertainment and various third-parties. These include a central meeting point; a bowling alley and gaming arcade; a shopping complex; a café; and various game, developer, and company spaces.

The spaces' names and availability vary based on the user's location. For example, the shopping complex is called the "Shopping Mall" in Asia and Japan, "Mall 1st Floor/2nd Floor" in North America, and the "Shopping Centre" in Europe.

Core Spaces


The Core Spaces are the spaces made by Sony Computer Entertainment, specifically for the Home environment. These are the main spaces of Home and are updated the most. They are also where most events occur. The Core Spaces from SCE are the central meeting point, the theatre, the bowling alley and gaming arcade, the shopping complex, the café, the PlayStation Events spaces and the new Districts.

The Home Square (Europe, Asia, and Japan) or The Hub (North America) is Home's central meeting point where users commonly meet and chat. It is where much of the advertising occurs, and it connects all of the core Home spaces together.

On November 3, 2011, North America's Central Plaza (former central meeting point) was replaced with The Hub and Europe's Home Square was also revamped. Both now feature a districts design that will help users find games, people, and places that fit their favorite game genre. The Hub features a 3D demo version of Lazy 8 Studios award-winning Steampunk puzzle game, Cogs
Cogs (video game)
-Gameplay:Cogs is built on a number of puzzles that mimic sliding block puzzles. Each level, representing some three-dimensional object, has various objectives, but generally involve moving tiles to connect sets of gears, piping, and other physical elements to make that object behave in a specific...

(a full version can be accessed in a space dedicated to Cogs). It also features an Activity Board that includes a questing and events system, and stores with games, personal spaces, and avatar enhancements. From there, players can navigate to genre-based Districts that include exclusive games and content served up according to each player’s interests, style, and game preference.

The Districts include the Action District (reminiscent of a first-person shooter level and provides a direct travel point to action and horror games), the Sportswalk (an outside-the-stadium feel with instant major league sports scores, headlines and highlights and sports-themed games), the Adventure District (currently featuring the Uncharted 3 Total Game Integration), Pier Park (a waterfront boardwalk with a carnival, puzzle, outdoor and arcade games), the PlayStation Home Theater (a new modern architectural design), and PlayStation Home Mall (redesign of the shopping complex, now two floors). The revamped Home Square for Europe also features the Action District, the Sportswalk, and the Adventure District, but also features the Indie Park which allows users to check out a huge range of bite-sized games showcasing the talent and creativity of a variety of indie developers. This zone also offers a unique opportunity for up and coming developers to show off their talent and for players to experience their innovation first hand.

The Home Theatre (Asia, Europe, and Japan), or Theater Lobby (North America) is a virtual cinema
Movie theater
A movie theater, cinema, movie house, picture theater, film theater is a venue, usually a building, for viewing motion pictures ....

 where users can view a range of video content. This content includes film, game trailers, video game features from third-party publishers such as Eurogamer
Eurogamer
Eurogamer is a Brighton-based website focused on video games news, reviews, previews and interviews. It is operated by Eurogamer Network Ltd., which was formed in 1999 by brothers Rupert and Nick Loman. Eurogamer has grown to become one of the most important European-based websites focused on...

, and full-length TV shows. Videos are displayed in the 3D environment on virtual video screens which can be viewed full screen. Users can walk around the cinema that they are in and sit in the seats. The Theater Lobby also features a shop where users can purchase film related clothes and other items, as well as the mini-game, Scribble Shooter. Japan's theatre occasionally has a kiosk of a sort set up for events that are occurring. Asia and Japan's theatre features four virtual screens, Europe's features ten virtual screens, and North America's features six virtual screens.

At the Bowling Alley (Europe and North America) or the Game Space (Asia and Japan), social mini-games such as 10-pin bowling and pool billiards
Pocket billiards
Pool, also more formally known as pocket billiards or pool billiards , is the family of cue sports and games played on a pool table having six receptacles called pockets along the , into which balls are deposited as the main goal of play. Popular versions include eight-ball and nine-ball...

 can be played; it also features a variety of arcade-machine games including Echochrome
Echochrome
is a puzzle game created by Sony's JAPAN Studio and Game Yarouze, which is available for PlayStation 3 from the PlayStation Store and for PlayStation Portable on either UMD or from the PlayStation Store. Gameplay involves a mannequin figure traversing a rotatable world where physics and reality...

. Prizes are awarded for beating the arcade-machine games. Currently, there are pool tables, bowling lanes, arcade machines, video screens, and dart boards (Game Space only). The Game Space also features arcades from the Namco Museum.comm PSN downloadable game.

The Shopping Centre (Europe), Mall 1st Floor/2nd Floor (North America), or Shopping Mall (Asia and Japan), is where the majority of purchases are made. The shopping complex allow users to buy new clothes, accessories, premium locations (Personal Spaces or Clubs), and other items. Purchases use PlayStation Network Wallet funds, and work in a manner similar to the PlayStation Store. The shopping complex features various stores for specific products, a video screen, advertising posters, and a place to play chess (Shopping Centre only). The current stores for Asia, Europe, and Japan consist of "Home Stuff", "Home Estates", "Home Threads", a Home "furniture store", 'Ligne Roset
Ligne Roset
Ligne Roset is a French modern furniture company that has over 200 stores and more than 1,000 retail distributors worldwide. The company was founded by Antoine Roset in 1860 in Montagnieu, France as a small business manufacturing bentwood walking sticks...

' furniture, 'Diesel' clothes, Alter Ego, and The Original V-Shirt Store. The latter four are unavailable in Asia and Japan. North America's shopping complex is divided into two floors with ten stores on each floor. The first floor includes the stores Shears, Sodium, Home Exclusives, Home Threads, Sidekicks, Games, Home Estates, Home Furniture, Costumes, and Diesel. The second floor includes the stores Music, nDreams, Loot, Lockwood, Mass Media, Konami, VeeMee, LucasArts, Heavy Water, and BillaBong. Europe's Shopping Centre was redesigned on June 17, 2010. It features all of the stores it previously did, however, it is now outside like a plaza.

The Home Café (Asia and Japan) or Gamer's Lounge (North America) is a two-story building where users can meet up and chat. There is a water feature
Water feature
In landscape architecture and garden design, a water feature is one or more items from a range of fountains, pools, ponds, cascades, waterfalls, and streams. Before the 18th century they were usually powered by gravity, though the famous Hanging Gardens of Babylon are described by Strabo as...

, a wine gallery and chairs. The space has featured a "developer talk" which occurred on March 4, 2009 in the Gamer's Lounge with the developers of Street Fighter IV
Street Fighter IV
is a fighting game produced by Capcom. It is the first numbered Street Fighter game released by Capcom since . The coin-operated arcade game was released in Japan on July 18, 2008, with North American arcades importing the machines by August...

. Users got to ask the developers questions about the game. On April 15, 2010, the Gamer's Lounge updated and now features a Liar's Dice mini-game, a ticker that is pulled from the Official PlayStation Home Twitter
Twitter
Twitter is an online social networking and microblogging service that enables its users to send and read text-based posts of up to 140 characters, informally known as "tweets".Twitter was created in March 2006 by Jack Dorsey and launched that July...

 account, and a survey that rewards virtual items. The Gamer's Lounge is also now the host space for the Featured Game nights in North America which was previously hosted at the Listen@Home kiosk in the Central Plaza. For a time, Japan’s Café was sponsored by Famitsu Game Magazine
Famitsu
is a line of Japanese video game magazines published by Enterbrain, Inc. and Tokuma. Currently, there are five Famitsū magazines: Shūkan Famitsū, Famitsū PS3 + PSP, Famitsū Xbox 360, Famitsū Wii+DS, and Famitsū Wave DVD...

which featured Famitsu's mascot
Mascot
The term mascot – defined as a term for any person, animal, or object thought to bring luck – colloquially includes anything used to represent a group with a common public identity, such as a school, professional sports team, society, military unit, or brand name...

 and a display of their office. The Home Café for Japan has been remodeled as the "Music Café" and features the first floor as a "Sound Space" for a dance club-like feel with music and on the second floor, a "Gallery Space" displaying various Sony entertainment products such as Bravia televisions, VAIO computers, Walkman products and a Questionnaire with rewards. The Café is still closed for Asia and is unavailable to Europe.

The Hong Kong/Korea/Singapore/Taiwan Lounge is a new Home Core Space only available in the Asian Home. Unlike other pan-Asia spaces such as the Home Square, this lounge is exclusive to users of the same region only (e.g. The Hong Kong Lounge is only for Hong Kong users). Here, users can find other users coming from the same region and learn about special events for their own region. The space is divided into two sections: a top floor and a middle floor; the lower floor has yet to be revealed. In Europe and North America, the top floor of this space is called "The Observatory" and the bottom floor is called "The PlayStation Network Sphere" (Europe only) and are part of the PlayStation Events Space.

The Playground is a new Home Core Space only available in the European and North American Homes, which was added on June 17, 2010. The Playground is a place for users to hang out, play chess, challenge their friends to a game of H-O-R-S-E, and dance on stage. Users can also purchase virtual items at "Shoppers Delight" and listen to new top 40 hits Jams on radio K-Home. The space is an urban playground and block party setting not completely unlike what would have been found in Brooklyn 30 years ago.

PlayStation Events Space


The PlayStation Events Space opens to the public in the occurrence of special events. This space consists of five known spaces - Events Landing, The Gallery, the Presentation Podium, The Backstage Pass, The Observatory, and the PlayStation Network Sphere - and is a venue for special events, announcements, and parties.

The first event for the PlayStation Home Open Beta was the PSP-3000 Treasure Hunt (January 2009) which featured the "Events Landing" and "The Gallery" spaces. When first entering the space, users received a PSP 3000 hat for their avatar, featuring a design based on their "Whole World in Your Hands" adverts at the time. In this event, users had to search for eight codes in the events spaces and enter them into the "Touchpad" for a chance to win a PSP-3000. During this first event, the space was only used by Europe. The "Presentation Podium" was first used for the E3 2009 event in Europe and North America (May 2009). It featured Sony's E3 press conference during and after E3 with exclusive virtual shirts during this event for the users to obtain by finding voucher codes spread throughout Home's core spaces in North America. "The Backstage Pass" was first used during the Heavy Rain: Evidence Analysis event in Europe (January 2010). This event required users to enter into the doors behind the jumbo screen of the Presentation Podium, which lead to The Backstage Pass, which lead to another security door that, if users could get through, let the users access the "Evidence Analysis" mini-game with a special reward. "The Observatory" was first used for the Minis event (Europe, May 2010; North America, July 2010). In this event, users challenged each other to a duel of memory for a special reward. The "PlayStation Network Sphere" was introduced on December 16, 2010 in Europe and lets users access current and past events and has its own mini-game.

Other events that have utilized the PlayStation Events Space include Fat Princess
Fat Princess
Fat Princess is a downloadable video game for the PlayStation Network made by Titan Studios and sold by Sony Computer Entertainment. It was released in North America and Europe on July 30, 2009, and in Japan on December 25, 2009....

: Quest for Cake
using Events Landing and The Gallery, gamescom 2009 using the Presentation Podium, Buzz!
Buzz!
Buzz! is a series of video games originated by Sleepydog Ltd., developed by Relentless Software and published by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe for the PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable consoles. They are quiz games that see the players answering trivia questions while...

 Tomato Challenge
using Events Landing, PSPgo: Team Trial using the Presentation Podium, an event celebrating the launch of Groove Armada
Groove Armada
Groove Armada is an English electronic music duo from London, England comprising Andy Cato and Tom Findlay. They are perhaps best known for their singles "I See You Baby" and "Superstylin'"...

's album Black Light, which was in association with VidZone
VidZone
VidZone is the largest online music video VOD service in the world, operated by London-based company VidZone Digital Media and Sony Computer Entertainment. The online service provides free streaming of music videos from the VidZone.tv website, in addition to music distribution through a number of...

, using the Presentation Podium, Gravity Crash
Gravity Crash
Gravity Crash is a multidirectional shooter released on the Playstation Network. Its visual style pays homage to arcade games of the 1980s.-Gameplay:...

: Maze to the Mothership!
using the Presentation Podium, the White Knight Chronicles Photo Challenge! using The Gallery,, the Hustle Kings
Hustle Kings
Hustle Kings is a pool video game developed by VooFoo Studios for the PlayStation 3. It was released on the PlayStation Store in Europe on 22 December 2009 and in North America on 28 January 2010. The game features a career mode as well as various trick shot and tournament modes...

 Ball Dodge Challenge!
using Events Landing, the Mod Spot Challenge
ModNation Racers
ModNation Racers is a kart racing game developed by United Front Games for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable. User generated content will be a central aspect of the game, such that it uses the same "Play, Create, Share." adage as LittleBigPlanet to convey its basis in online user-generated...

using The Backstage Pass, an event for the PlayStation Move using the Presentation Podium, gamescom 2010
Gamescom
gamescom is a trade fair for video games held annually at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is organised by the Bundesverband Interaktive Unterhaltungssoftware...

using The Gallery,, and gamescom 2011
Gamescom
gamescom is a trade fair for video games held annually at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is organised by the Bundesverband Interaktive Unterhaltungssoftware...

using The Gallery.

Game Spaces



Sony Computer Entertainment and various third parties can create dedicated "Game Spaces" for specific games. These spaces generally depict a level of the game itself and have mini-games or interactions related to the game. There are currently over forty Game Spaces that have been released for Home. These Game Spaces vary depending on the region the user is in.

The first five Game Spaces released for the Home Open Beta were Uncharted: Sully's
Victor Sullivan
Victor "Sully" Sullivan is a protagonist from the Uncharted video game franchise. He is voiced by Richard McGonagle, who also did the motion capture for the character. In the games, he is a friend and mentor to Nathan Drake, the main series protagonist. He is a man with large debts and a criminal...

 Bar
, Far Cry 2
Far Cry 2
Far Cry 2 is an open world first-person shooter developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft. It was released on October 21, 2008 in North America and on October 23, 2008 in Europe and Australia. It was made available on Steam on October 22, 2008...

: Reuben's Office
, Far Cry 2: Train Station, Minna no Golf Lounge, and Siren Lounge. The first three were released in the North American Home and the last two for the Japanese Home at the launch of the Open Beta. The Resident Evil 5
Resident Evil 5
Resident Evil 5, known in Japan as , is a survival horror third-person shooter video game developed and published by Capcom. The game is the seventh installment in the Resident Evil survival horror series, and was released on March 5, 2009 in Japan and on March 13, 2009 in North America and Europe...

 Studio Lot
(or Biohazard 5 Film Studio) is the first space to offer an in-lounge shop. The inFamous: Abandoned Docks of Empire City space is the first space to broadcast exclusive media from the games developer, which in this case is Sucker Punch Productions
Sucker Punch Productions
Sucker Punch Productions is an American production company founded in 1997 and based in Bellevue, Washington. It was an independent company until August 2011, but had worked exclusively with Sony Computer Entertainment since 2000. Sony acquired Sucker Punch on August 2, 2011.-History:In late 1999,...

. The Dizzee Rascal
Dizzee Rascal
Dylan Kwabena Mills , better known by his stage name Dizzee Rascal, is a Ghanaian British rapper, songwriter and record producer. His music is a blend of garage, hip hop, grime, ragga, pop and electronic music, with eclectic samples and more exotic styles...

 VIP Room for The SingStar
SingStar
SingStar is a competitive music video game series for PlayStation consoles, developed by London Studio and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. 23 English-language instalments of the series have been released for the PlayStation 2, and six versions for the PlayStation 3 have been released...

 Rooms: VIP
space was the first space to have a performance by a musical artist. The Uncharted 2
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is an action-adventure platform third-person shooter video game developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3. It is the sequel to the 2007 game Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. It was first shown and announced on December 1, 2008...

 Nepalese Village
Game Space makes the Uncharted series the first series to have a Game Space for both games of its series. R-Type Tactics II: Operation Bitter Chocolate
R-Type Tactics II: Operation Bitter Chocolate
R-Type Tactics II: Operation Bitter Chocolate is a turn-based strategy game/tactical role-playing game released in 2009 in Japan for the PlayStation Portable game console. It is a direct sequel to 2007's R-Type Tactics...

is the first PSP title to receive a Game Space. The SOCOM
SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Confrontation
SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Confrontation is a third person tactical shooter video game for the PlayStation 3 developed by Slant Six Games. It was released on October 14, 2008 on the PlayStation Network and Blu-ray Disc in North America and March 2009 in Europe....

: Opposing Force
Game Space is the first space to award items for use in the game itself. Users can win a Golden AK-47 for use in SOCOM: Confrontation.

Some games, such as Namco Museum.comm/Essentials, Street Fighter IV, Resident Evil 5/Biohazard 5, SingStar (Europe), Makai Senki Disgaea 3 (Japan), Minna de Spelunker (Japan), Catan
Catan (2008 video game)
Catan is a classic board game. This was an original version of the game , and is helmed by Game Republic, developers of Genji and Folklore. The download was hit in Japan on December 18, 2008 for 1200 yen...

(Japan), Batman: Arkham Asylum, Tekken 6
Tekken 6
is a fighting game developed and published by Namco Bandai. It is the eighth game in the Tekken franchise. It was released in Japanese arcades on November 26, 2007 as the first game running on the PlayStation 3-based System 357 arcade board. The game received an update, subtitled Bloodline...

, Buzz!: Quiz World
Buzz!: Quiz World
Buzz!: Quiz World, developed by Relentless Software, is the ninth game in the Buzz! series of quiz games. The game is available for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable consoles. It allows users to use question packs purchased for previous Buzz! games as well as supporting user created content...

, White Knight Chronicles, Mega Man 10
Mega Man 10
Mega Man 10, known in Japan as , is a video game developed by Capcom and Inti Creates. It is the tenth main entry of the original Mega Man series...

, and Red Dead Redemption support Home rewards. The users receive the rewards by earning certain trophies in the game itself or by simply launching the game in their PS3. The inFamous demo and the Namco Museum.comm/Essentials demo also support Home rewards.

The PSP
PlayStation Portable
The is a handheld game console manufactured and marketed by Sony Corporation Development of the console was announced during E3 2003, and it was unveiled on , 2004, at a Sony press conference before E3 2004...

 has support for Home rewards as well. In Japan, the first and currently only game with Home rewards support is The Idolmaster SP.

In a discussion at GDC
Game Developers Conference
The Game Developers Conference is the largest annual gathering of professional video game developers, focusing on learning, inspiration, and networking...

 2009 on March 25, 2009, Jack Buser stated, "You'll see about three new spaces launched a month...I'll be shocked if we ever go under that number, we have so much in the pipeline."

Outso is a developing company that develops some of the Game Spaces for Home. Outso is responsible for making the Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, inFAMOUS, Resistance 2, and Warhawk spaces for the respective games developer. They have also made the mini-games in those spaces as well as the "SOCOM Telestrator" in the SOCOM space, Saucer Pop in the Central Plaza, ranking leaderboards in spaces, high quality interactive mini-games, animated furniture and clothing, and user generated content, more specifically the "inFAMOUS Graffiti" in the inFAMOUS space. They also developed the MMO Sodium for Home.

Game Developer Spaces




Video game developers are able to create "Developer Spaces" for their developing company to showcase their products in Home. These spaces act similarly to Game Spaces except they are not for a specific game like the Game Spaces are. These spaces generally have mini-games related to their company or games and offer a wide range of content for purchase based on their company. Currently, nine game developers have made Game Developer Spaces for Home; Namco Bandai, EA Sports, Irem, Q-Games, GAME Ltd., Hudson Entertainment, Konami
Konami
is a Japanese leading developer and publisher of numerous popular and strong-selling toys, trading cards, anime, tokusatsu, slot machines, arcade cabinets and video games...

, LucasArts
LucasArts
LucasArts Entertainment Company, LLC is an American video game developer and publisher. The company was once famous for its innovative line of graphic adventure games, the critical and commercial success of which peaked in the mid 1990s...

, and Psygnosis/SCE Studio Liverpool
SCE Studio Liverpool
SCE Studio Liverpool is a video game development house head-quartered at Wavertree Technology Park in Liverpool, England. It is part of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios. Founded in 1984 as Psygnosis, the company is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Computer Entertainment and...

.

Namco Bandai
Namco Bandai Games
is an arcade, mobile and home video game developer and publisher based in Japan which is the product of a merger between the video game development divisions of Bandai and Namco. Namco Bandai Games is a wholly owned subsidiary of Namco Bandai Holdings and specializes in production and sales of...

 was the first to do this with their "Namco Bandai" space in Japan on December 11, 2008. It has also been released in Asia on March 26, 2009 and North America on July 16, 2009. It is unconfirmed for Europe. Their Namco arcade features all of the Namco Museum collection that can be downloaded from the PlayStation Store in those regions. Irem also teamed up with Home and released the "Irem Square" on February 26, 2009, July 23, 2009, and January 14, 2010 for Japan, Asia, and North America respectively. They have also released another promotional space called the "Irem Seaside of Memories" on August 13, 2009 for both Asia and Japan and March 4, 2010 for North America. This space is the first space to let users go in and under the water. Q-Games
Q-Games
Q-Games is a video game developer based in Nakagyō-ku, Kyoto, Japan. It has a mixture of foreigners and Japanese nationals on staff and works closely with both Nintendo and Sony.-Foundation:...

 has released a museum show casing four of their games from their hit series PixelJunk
PixelJunk
PixelJunk is a series of downloadable games developed by Q-Games for the PlayStation 3. They are available for download and purchase on the PlayStation Store worldwide. The series made its debut on July 11, 2007 at E3 2007 with PixelJunk Racers....

. This museum was released on September 24, 2009 for Japan and October 9, 2009 for North America.

EA Sports
EA Sports
EA Sports is a brand of Electronic Arts that creates and develops sports video games. Formerly a marketing gimmick of Electronic Arts, in which they tried to mimic real-life sports networks by calling themselves "EA Sports Network" with pictures or endorsements of real commentators such as John...

 (currently unavailable for updating reasons) is the biggest third-party supporter for Home having released a total of five spaces, many virtual items, and are still developing more content for Home. They released the long awaited "EA Sports Complex" on April 23, 2009 for Europe and North America. The EA Sports Complex was developed by Heavy Water for EA Sports. EA Sports updates the Complex frequently and it now features five rooms; the EA Sports Racing Complex, the EA Sports Golf Complex, the EA Sports Complex Green Poker Room, the EA Sports Complex Red Poker Room, and Club Fight Night, which is the game space for Fight Night Round 4
Fight Night Round 4
Fight Night Round 4 garnered positive reaction from critics for its strategic gameplay and strong multiplayer component. The PlayStation 3 version received an 87.89% and an 88% from review aggregate websites GameRankings and MetaCritic respectively...

. The EA Sports Complex was released to Japan on October 9, 2009. Each room features a mini-game, each with different rewards. EA has also released sports jerseys for the NFL, and NCAA college football and basketball jerseys. From October to November 2009, EA Sports teamed up with the Home team to produce and distribute exclusive virtual items (black jerseys with a the number 9 and Brees both colored pink) that served to support National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Breast Cancer Awareness Month is an annual international health campaign organized by major breast cancer charities every October to increase awareness of the disease and to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure...

. 100% of proceeds from these items went toward the Brees Dream Foundation in support of breast cancer research and awareness programs. On November 25, 2009, Fight Night Round 4 producers Mike Mahar and Brian Hayes were in Home between the hours of 4:00pm and 5:00pm PT (7:00pm and 8:00pm EST), for a live chat with the PlayStation Home community in one instance of the Club Fight Night space.

SCEJ have also announced that Sony have given licenses to 24 companies to produce content for Home. As well as independent Japanese developers (such as Irem and Koei) the list also includes international companies such as Activision
Activision
Activision is an American publisher, majority owned by French conglomerate Vivendi SA. Its current CEO is Robert Kotick. It was founded on October 1, 1979 and was the world's first independent developer and distributor of video games for gaming consoles...

, Capcom
Capcom
is a Japanese developer and publisher of video games, known for creating multi-million-selling franchises such as Devil May Cry, Chaos Legion, Street Fighter, Mega Man and Resident Evil. Capcom developed and published Bionic Commando, Lost Planet and Dark Void too, but they are less known. Its...

, Tecmo, Disney Interactive, Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts, Inc. is a major American developer, marketer, publisher and distributor of video games. Founded and incorporated on May 28, 1982 by Trip Hawkins, the company was a pioneer of the early home computer games industry and was notable for promoting the designers and programmers...

, Konami
Konami
is a Japanese leading developer and publisher of numerous popular and strong-selling toys, trading cards, anime, tokusatsu, slot machines, arcade cabinets and video games...

, Namco Bandai, Sega
Sega
, usually styled as SEGA, is a multinational video game software developer and an arcade software and hardware development company headquartered in Ōta, Tokyo, Japan, with various offices around the world...

, and Ubisoft
Ubisoft
Ubisoft Entertainment S.A. is a major French video game publisher and developer, with headquarters in Montreuil, France. The company has a worldwide presence with 25 studios in 17 countries and subsidiaries in 26 countries....

.

Non-gaming Company Spaces



Non-gaming-related companies can also create sponsored "Company Spaces" for Home. These also act similarly to Game Spaces but are specifically made to sponsor the companies products.

The first company to do this was Red Bull
Red Bull
Red Bull is an energy drink sold by the Austrian Red Bull GmbH, created in 1987 by the Austrian entrepreneur Dietrich Mateschitz. In terms of market share, Red Bull is the most popular energy drink in the world, with 3 billion cans sold each year. Dietrich Mateschitz was inspired by an already...

 with their "Red Bull Space" released on January 8, 2009 for Europe and North America which features the Red Bull Air Race mini-game. The "Air Race" is a virtual version of the real-life event. On November 26, 2009, Red Bull released two new spaces for Europe and North America, one for the Red Bull Illume
Red Bull Illume
Red Bull Illume is a biennial international action and adventure sport photography contest.-Image Quest 2007:The first edition of the Image Quest In 2007 resulted in 2000 established and amateur photographers from over 90 different countries submitting more than 7,500 images...

and the other for the Red Bull Flugtag. The "Illume" space has an exhibition of action and adventure sports photographs from Red Bull Illume. The winning photograph from each of the competition’s ten categories is displayed on large illuminate cubes, imitating the real-life exhibit. The "Red Bull Beach" space has the Red Bull Flugtag mini-game where users can compete against one another by launching one of five flying machines off of a 30-foot high deck to try and achieve flight. It also features a Red Bull Jukebox with ten different tunes from Red Bull. All three of the Red Bull spaces were released to the Asian Home on June 17, 2010.

In the Japanese Home, Coca-Cola
The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company is an American multinational beverage corporation and manufacturer, retailer and marketer of non-alcoholic beverage concentrates and syrups. The company is best known for its flagship product Coca-Cola, invented in 1886 by pharmacist John Stith Pemberton in Columbus, Georgia...

 had placed a vending machine in Home that took users to a space called the "Georgia Break Station". The vending machines also distributed original avatar items and presents, along with "C-pons", digital coupons that could be used to get real drinks from real vending machines. This was to promote Coca-Cola's Georgia
Georgia (drink)
is the name of a popular brand of coffee-flavored beverages sold by The Coca-Cola Company. It was launched in 1975 by Coca-Cola Company, a Japanese subsidiary of the company. It has since expanded to markets in Singapore, South Korea, India and Bahrain. Georgia enjoys the most success in Japan,...

 series of canned coffee. The space was a lounge that functioned similarly to The Gamer's Lounge in North America. It had two in-lounge avatars that spoke to the users regarding the Georgia coffee with exclusive limited time items and was available from September 7, 2009 to December 17, 2009.

At Gamescom 2009, SCEE president Andrew House announced that Audi
Audi
Audi AG is a German automobile manufacturer, from supermini to crossover SUVs in various body styles and price ranges that are marketed under the Audi brand , positioned as the premium brand within the Volkswagen Group....

 would be supporting Home starting off with content in Home's theatre and then later, a dedicated Home space. Audi is the first carmaker to develop a space for Home. The Audi Space features two spaces: the "Audi Home Terminal", and the "Audi Vertical Run" which accesses the mini-game. The Audi Space was released on December 17, 2009 to the European Home. The Home Terminal features an Audi TV channel delivering video content as well as an internet portal where users can get information off of the internet from Audi. The mini-game Vertical Run is a futuristic mini-game featuring Audi's e-tron concept. Players collect energy and race for the highest possible speeds and the fastest players can earn their very own "Audi Apartment". Audi has stated that additional content will be added in 2010.

Sony have also released spaces dedicated to the 2010 FIFA World Cup
2010 FIFA World Cup
The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup, the world championship for men's national association football teams. It took place in South Africa from 11 June to 11 July 2010...

 and Liar Game
Liar Game
is a Japanese manga series originally written and illustrated by Shinobu Kaitani. The manga was first serialized in 2005 in the Japanese manga magazine Weekly Young Jump, published by Shueisha...

. The Liar Game space is on available in Japan. On June 3, 2010, the 2010 FIFA World Cup space, called the FevaArena, was released in the Asian, European, and North American Homes. On June 10, 2010, the FevaArena Global Pitch Area of the FevaArena opened allowing 14 million users from 32 countries across the globe to converge in one space making this the first global public space in the Home Open Beta. It was removed on July 11, 2010.

Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison
Phil Harrison is the former British corporate executive and a representative director of Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. and Executive Vice President of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe . At E3 in 2005 he showcased the first public realtime demonstrations of PlayStation 3 development hardware...

 stated that locations built around famous coffee, drinks, clothing, and record companies; along with major retailers and other such companies could feature content depending on the company's desire to create Home content.

Game Launching


Game Launching is a feature in Home which allows users to launch PS3 games while in Home. There are two types of Game Launching: full and simplified. "Full Game Launching" support allows users to organize and start multi-player games with other Home users, who may or may not be on their friends lists. Users can set up a full game launching session by going into their Menu Pads, selecting "Game Launching", and setting up a session with advanced options, like how many players and the map or level and settings, for the game they want to launch. They can also join an existing session. When users have set up a game that is ready to launch, the name of the game and how many players have joined the session is shown under the users' names above their avatar's head. By using the Game Launching feature, users are entered directly into the game, bypassing the normal title screen. After the match ends, users can either quit the game and be returned to their XMB, or they can quit the game and be returned back to Home.

Currently, games that fully support game launching are Warhawk, Resident Evil 5/Biohazard 5, Everybody's Golf: World Tour/Hot Shots Golf: Out of Bounds/Minna no Golf 5, Namco Museum.comm/Essentials (Asia & Japan), Minna de Spelunker (Asia & Japan), Catan
Catan (2008 video game)
Catan is a classic board game. This was an original version of the game , and is helmed by Game Republic, developers of Genji and Folklore. The download was hit in Japan on December 18, 2008 for 1200 yen...

(Japan), Street Fighter IV, Resistance 2
Resistance 2
Resistance 2 is a science fiction first person shooter video game developed by Insomniac Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3. The game was released in North America on November 4, 2008, Japan on November 13, 2008, and in Europe on November 28, 2008...

, Crash Commando
Crash Commando
Crash Commando is a downloadable game for the PlayStation 3. It was released on December 18, 2008.-Gameplay:Crash Commando, is a side-scrolling multiplayer shooter game pitting two commando factions, the Grunts and the Jarheads, against each other in an all-out fight for world supremacy...

, MotorStorm: Pacific Rift
MotorStorm: Pacific Rift
MotorStorm: Pacific Rift is a racing video game by Evolution Studios and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3. It is the sequel to MotorStorm and is followed by MotorStorm: Arctic Edge for the PS2/PSP, and MotorStorm: Apocalypse...

, Far Cry 2, Buzz!: Quiz TV
Buzz!: Quiz TV
Buzz!: Quiz TV , developed by Relentless Software and Sleepydog, is the seventh game in the Buzz! series of quiz games and the first to appear on the PlayStation 3 console. It debuts new wireless Buzz! controllers, as well as new game rounds. It is the first Buzz! game to feature user created...

, Buzz!: Quiz World
Buzz!: Quiz World
Buzz!: Quiz World, developed by Relentless Software, is the ninth game in the Buzz! series of quiz games. The game is available for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable consoles. It allows users to use question packs purchased for previous Buzz! games as well as supporting user created content...

, the Lost Planet 2 Co-op demo
Lost Planet 2
Lost Planet 2 is a third-person shooter video game developed and published by Capcom. The game is the sequel to Lost Planet: Extreme Condition, taking place ten years after the events of the first game, on the same fictional planet. The game was developed for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and...

, Tekken 6
Tekken 6
is a fighting game developed and published by Namco Bandai. It is the eighth game in the Tekken franchise. It was released in Japanese arcades on November 26, 2007 as the first game running on the PlayStation 3-based System 357 arcade board. The game received an update, subtitled Bloodline...

, LittleBigPlanet
LittleBigPlanet
LittleBigPlanet, commonly abbreviated LBP, is a puzzle platformer video game, based on user-generated content, for the PlayStation 3 first announced on 7 March 2007, by Phil Harrison at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, California...

, and Hustle Kings
Hustle Kings
Hustle Kings is a pool video game developed by VooFoo Studios for the PlayStation 3. It was released on the PlayStation Store in Europe on 22 December 2009 and in North America on 28 January 2010. The game features a career mode as well as various trick shot and tournament modes...

.

"Simplified Game Launching", also known as Universal Game Launching, was implemented with Core Client update v1.30. With simplified game launching, users simply insert a game into their PS3 while in Home and follow the on screen directions. Users have a limited number of options to select with simplified game launching. For instance, they cannot choose what map or level they want and what settings for the map or level within Home, they must do that after the game has been launched. The name of the game and how many users have joined the session is also shown under the users' names above their avatar's head. This allows any PS3 game to be launched from Home.

User-generated content


User-generated content
User-generated content
User generated content covers a range of media content available in a range of modern communications technologies. It entered mainstream usage during 2005 having arisen in web publishing and new media content production circles...

 for Home is slowly being implemented. In time, Home may have a greater ability for user-generated content, but under strict moderation. Picture frames are the first feature to support user-generated content with photo sharing. The inFamous Game Space also supports user-generated content by allowing users to create their own unique graffiti designs in the graffiti mini-game and save it to their PS3s HDD to display for their friends.

On October 16, 2009, Rockstar Games
Rockstar Games
Rockstar Games is a major video game developer and publisher based in New York City, owned by Take-Two Interactive following its purchase of UK video game publisher BMG Interactive. The brand is mostly known for Grand Theft Auto, Max Payne, L.A...

 began having "Beaterator Parties" at the Listen@Home station in North America's Central Plaza. Beaterator
Beaterator
Beaterator is a music mixer released in September 2009 by Rockstar Games for the PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3 , Windows, and the iOS released in December 2009. Beaterator was developed by Rockstar Leeds...

is a PSP game that allows users to mix their own music and produce their own loops. Rockstar Games will be playing users uploaded Beaterator tracks at Listen@Home during the Beaterator Sessions.

Xi



Xi (icon or us) was the world's first console-based and virtual world-based Alternate Reality Game
Alternate reality game
An alternate reality game is an interactive narrative that uses the real world as a platform, often involving multiple media and game elements, to tell a story that may be affected by participants' ideas or actions....

. The game was an adventure to help find "Jess" and the meaning of Xi by collecting fragments and butterflies that took place in a series of secret areas in Home that changed frequently. The game also involved the users to search for clues in the real world. This game was created by nDreams
NDreams
nDreams, Ltd. is a video game developing company located in Farnborough, Hampshire in the United Kingdom. The company was formed in August 2006 thanks to former SCi/Eidos creative director, Patrick O'Luanaigh. nDreams was listed in Develop magazine as one of the hot companies to look for in 2008...

 who released several spaces for Xi including, "The Hub" and another space called "Home Maintenance" as well as "Alpha Zones 1", "2", and "3" within The Hub and "Party at Jess's Apartment" within Home Maintenance. When users completed Xi, they were no longer able to access The Hub, but could access the "Xi Alumni Hub" in its place. Xi was advertised via clues and hints during the month prior to its release on March 23, 2009. The clues were hidden in the Menu Pad and videos in the central meeting point. Xi and all of the corresponding spaces were exclusive to Europe and North America. After Xis conclusion, the only spaces users could access were the Xi Alumni Hub and Alpha Zone 1 - Game Test Area, Maximum-Tilt Lobby, and Adventure Lobby; the Alpha Zone 1 spaces were accessed through the teleport in the Xi Alumni Hub. These spaces were removed in mid-2010 so they could be updated to accommodate with recent core updates of Home.

In September 2009, it was reported that since Xis release, the number of visits to the spaces, including the then remaining spaces, had exceeded 5 million visits.

On December 23, 2010, the "Xi Museum" launched featuring an updated Xi Alumni Hub (now called Xi Museum), the three Alpha Zone 1 spaces (Game Test Area, Maximum-Tilt Lobby, and Adventure Lobby), and the four Alpha Zone 3 mazes (new items can be unlocked from these spaces). In addition, the Xi Museum now features a Xi Museum Shop, with items such as a Maximum-Tilt bike and the robot Stapler for users personal spaces. The public space "Party at Jess's Apartment" that was featured during Xi can now be purchased as a personal space for the users.

Sodium



Sodium is the first Home based Massively multiplayer online game
Massively multiplayer online game
A massively multiplayer online game is a multiplayer video game which is capable of supporting hundreds or thousands of players simultaneously. By necessity, they are played on the Internet, and usually feature at least one persistent world. They are, however, not necessarily games played on...

 released on December 17, 2009 to the European and North American versions of Home and on June 17, 2010 to the Japanese version. This game was developed by Outso and published by Lockwoood Publishing. This new MMO will continue to grow and expand as Home does. Like in Xi, there is a space for the game that can be accessed through the Navigator. The space is called the "Sodium Hub" and is a futuristic setting where "interstellar travel, rapid colonization of the galaxy, inexhaustible energy, advanced Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) and the power of travel between quantum realities" all feels very real. Users start somewhere in the Nevada
Nevada
Nevada is a state in the western, mountain west, and southwestern regions of the United States. With an area of and a population of about 2.7 million, it is the 7th-largest and 35th-most populous state. Over two-thirds of Nevada's people live in the Las Vegas metropolitan area, which contains its...

 desert. An in-lounge avatar named "VICKIE" assigns the objectives that puts the users into individual or multiplayer combat, which allows users to earn credits and rewards that can be redeemed later. Sodium boasts several different types of games, including "meta-games, full arcade-style games and community events." The very first section of the game is called Sodium One featuring the "Salt Shooter Game," which is where users must hunt "self-replacing robots with tanks in order to control their population." Salt Shooter is accessed through the free personal space called the "Salt Shooter Game" which is accessed through a teleporter in the Sodium Hub or in the users Menu Pad (a public space version is also available, the "Salt Shooter - Public Game Space"). The first five levels are entirely free; after which, users can unlock additional levels and new experiences with the purchase of virtual items. New games, virtual items, and community events will continually be added. Sodium One is the first part of a four series game for Home.

Sodium 2: Project Velocity was released on June 16, 2011. Sodium 2 is the first game for Home to utilize the new tools and features introduced with core client v1.50. Sodium 2: Project Velocity is a completely free to play (unlike Sodium One) high-speed extreme racing game, similar to the WipEout series of games. Sodium 2 features a single player mode that allows users to hone their skills and progress through the Sodium 2 XP system. Users can build XP, complete objectives, earn Sodium Credits or compete on the world-wide leader board. In addition to single player, Sodium 2 features real-time multiplayer, the first time in PlayStation Home, where users can race against friends or strangers through a growing selection of courses.

The Midway


The Midway is a carnival-style space that features ten mini-games with ten rewards for each mini-game in addition to a free personal space (Darla's Den). Users can purchase a "Gold Ticket" (50 tickets) to have access to all of the games until they're out of tickets. The space also features a random "free-to-play" mini-game that occurs every fifteen minutes in addition to one specific mini-game (Miz Fortune) that is free every five minutes. The Midway was released on July 1, 2010 in Europe and North America.

The Midway 2 was released on December 9, 2010 in Europe and North America and expands on from The Midway. Just like The Midway, it is a carnival-style space and adds ten more mini-games. The space also features the random "free-to-play" mini-game (occurring every 15 minutes) and the one specific free-to-play mini-game (Miz Fortune every 5 minutes).

Both The Midway and The Midway 2 were developed by Mass Media Inc..

Dragon's Green


Dragon's Green is a mini-golf game with nine holes of fantasy mini-golf and four difficulty gauntlets. In the Dragon’s Green, users can challenge up to three friends at a time and test their skills against dozens of enemy obstacles while uncovering secret challenges and unlocking special rewards. Jeffrey Gullett, the Producer responsible for bringing Dragon’s Green to PlayStation Home, says that "there are lots of different mini-golf games out there. But what we wanted to do is to offer our community a new take on this classic game." Dragon's Green was released worldwide on September 16, 2010.

Novus Prime


Novus Prime is a free-to-play multiplayer game in PlayStation Home developed by Hellfire Games. The game allows users to play missions in either single player or multiplayer cooperative format. Users can form teams of up to four players and embark on missions where they employ weaponry in intense battles against massive fleets of foes. Users can purchase new ships, weapons, and upgrades from the workshop, customizing their fighters’ styling and gear. In addition, users can take their avatars out into zero-G, floating freely while shooting the parasitic crawlers that drill into the station’s hull. Users with the highest scores can earn an exclusive animated officer’s jacket. Novus Prime was released on December 2, 2010 in the European and North American versions of Home. Upon its release, it was accessible via the Saucer Pop pond in North America's Central Plaza.

On March 31, 2011, Novus Prime received the expansion, Novus Prime: Escalation, which features all-new missions, new weapons, a new personal space, and new companions, plus new enemies, clothing, leaderboards, etc.

Conspiracy


Conspiracy is PlayStation Home's first third-person shooter
Third-person shooter
Third-person shooter is a genre of 3D action games in which the player character is visible on-screen, and the gameplay consists primarily of shooting.-Definition:...

 game released on January 20, 2011 in North America. Created by Jet Set Games, Conspiracy has players form alliances and raid enemy facilities, engaging in firefights with guards while subverting high-tech security systems and stealing bits of intelligence that have been locked in hidden and well-guarded locations. Players can unlock bonus items and abilities through in-game rewards and purchasable upgrades while earning points for their faction and increasing their standing on the leaderboards.

Slap Happy Sam


Slap Happy Sam is a multiplayer slap-a-thon from the critically acclaimed development team known as The Odd Gentlemen
The Odd Gentlemen
Matt Korba and Paul Bellezza founded the small video game studio The Odd Gentlemen in 2008. Their first video game is The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom. They have also released a game in the PlayStation 3's social gaming network, PlayStation Home, called Slap Happy Sam....

 released on January 20, 2011 in North America. It was available for free during its opening week in the Central Plaza. Users must now purchase the "Phonograph Music Box" (that plays music) which will let users access the full game.

Events


Home hosts many types of events, such as developer interviews. They are organised by Home and its affiliated content providers. Live events such as E3, sports and concerts may also be broadcast within Home. Special events are generally held at the 'PlayStation Events Space'.

In July 2011 (the 29th through the 31st), the EVO
Evolution Championship Series
The Evolution Championship Series is an annual video game tournament that focuses exclusively on fighting games. In fighting game communities it is commonly referred to as "Evo", and is currently the premier video game tournament for fighting games in the United States...

 World Finals were streamed live in North America's theater. This stream was also used to test a new streaming method for Home. Rewards were given each day with the final reward a virtual replica trophy of the EVO Championship Trophy.

The first live-streaming event for PlayStation Home was with NASA
NASA
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research...

's final lift off of Space Shuttle Discovery
Space Shuttle Discovery
Space Shuttle Discovery is one of the retired orbiters of the Space Shuttle program of NASA, the space agency of the United States, and was operational from its maiden flight, STS-41-D on August 30, 1984, until its final landing during STS-133 on March 9, 2011...

. This event occurred on February 24, 2011 at 4:50pm EST. Users could watch the live stream from their (or their friends) Sunset Yacht (formerly Amaterasu Yacht) personal space.

December 11, 2009 marked the one year anniversary of the Open Beta. During this time, the European and North American Home's treated the PlayStation Home Community for the anniversary. In the European Home, the Home team gave away a free personal apartment, the Tree House Personal Apartment, for two weeks as well as having a winter event in a redesigned Events Landing space. It was renamed the "Winter Wonderland" and featured daily activities for the users to gain rewards. In the North American Home, the Home team placed a Festive Tree in the Central Plaza that had different puzzles daily for different rewards. The first reward was a commemorative Open Beta Anniversary T-shirt. Each days riddle commemorated an event from the first year of the Open Beta. On December 26, 2009, the Festive Tree poofed into smoke to become the PlayStation Home ball which dropped on New Year's Eve counting down the new year. Asia also celebrated the one year anniversary with a Treasure Hunt game from December 10 to December 27, 2009. Users who found the secret code and messaged it to the specified moderator had the chance to win a HK$100 PSN voucher or a PSP go Virtual Tee.

There are some events in Home where users can win PS3 games. Between the hours of 8 am PT November 5, 2009 and 12 pm PT November 6, 2009, users in the North American Home (only U.S. citizens) had the chance to win the Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is an action-adventure platform third-person shooter video game developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 3. It is the sequel to the 2007 game Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. It was first shown and announced on December 1, 2008...

 - Fortune Hunter Edition
. Users had to go to the Uncharted 2 space between those times and play the "Mask Mayhem" mini-game. The user who placed first on the leader board in the Uncharted 2 space received the Fortune Hunter Edition. Users had two other chances over the next month to win the Uncharted 2: Among Thieves - Fortune Hunter Edition.

Some events are used to promote and advertise upcoming films. In Europe, there was a treasure hunt occurring in Home to promote the film, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is a 2009 American science fiction-action film directed by Michael Bay and produced by Steven Spielberg. It is the sequel to the 2007 film Transformers and the second installment in the live-action Transformers series...

. In this event, the users had to go to a poster in one of the Home spaces that was advertising the film and click the link option to open the Web Browser which took them to a web page where the users played a game. If they beat the game, they were rewarded a Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen themed t-shirt for their avatar and then could proceed to the next game when it was released. When the next game was released, it was in a different Home space from the previous game. There were a total of six games over the course of June 6, 2009 to June 24, 2009; the last game required the users to solve the previous five games again and rewarded a Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen trophy for users personal spaces.

In the European and North American Home, the Home management team have set up days for game launching events for some games that fully support game launching. For example, in the North American Home, there is a "Resistance 2: SRPA Siege Night" which is every Friday from 6 pm PT
Pacific Time Zone
The Pacific Time Zone observes standard time by subtracting eight hours from Coordinated Universal Time . The clock time in this zone is based on the mean solar time of the 120th meridian west of the Greenwich Observatory. During daylight saving time, its time offset is UTC-7.In the United States...

 to 10 pm PT. The North American Home now has a "Featured Game Night" where online multi-player games have been pre-selected in advance to be featured every night of the month for users to meet up in Home and launch into the featured game of the night.

The first several events in Home required the users to either answer questions or suggest ideas on the Official PlayStation Home Forums for a chance to win a prize. A couple of these events were the "12 Games of Christmas", a question and answer event for the 12 Days of Christmas, and "Name the New Home Space", which determined the name of the North American Home Space known as the 'Home Café' in Asia and Japan. The prize was generally a $10 USD product voucher for virtual items in the shopping complex. These events were organised by the PlayStation Home Managers.

Security


Sony is strict on the behaviour of users in Home. A variety of potentially offensive words and word combinations are automatically censored in messages that users write to each other, and administrators are able to block a users' console
Video game console
A video game console is an interactive entertainment computer or customized computer system that produces a video display signal which can be used with a display device to display a video game...

 and IP address
IP address
An Internet Protocol address is a numerical label assigned to each device participating in a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication. An IP address serves two principal functions: host or network interface identification and location addressing...

 from accessing the service if a user behaves illegally, inappropriately or against the terms of use of the service. Video, audio and text are archived in the case of grief reports.

Users are able to report the inappropriate or offensive behaviour of other users to moderators by accessing the PlayStation Home Safe Screen. Users are also able to change their communication settings to block or mute messages from users who are not on their friends list.

Updates


PlayStation Home undergoes a weekly maintenance, which comes with biweekly or weekly content updates. The core updates provide bug fixes and expand the social and gameplay aspects of Home. The beta has received several updates such as giving the users the ability to access the patio of their Harbour Studio, to access the 'Menu Pad'; and to access the shopping complex. Other features such as Home Trophies, pets, weather, and seasons have yet to be released. After location-affecting updates, the location must be re-downloaded. Content updates do not affect the version number; only the core client updates affect the version number.

Key version updates:
  • Version 1.0 was released on November 21, 2008. This version was available to beta testers as a 77 MB
    Megabyte
    The megabyte is a multiple of the unit byte for digital information storage or transmission with two different values depending on context: bytes generally for computer memory; and one million bytes generally for computer storage. The IEEE Standards Board has decided that "Mega will mean 1 000...

     download from the PlayStation Store
    PlayStation Store
    The PlayStation Store is an online virtual market available to users of Sony's PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable game consoles via the PlayStation Network. The Store offers a range of downloadable content both for purchase and available free of charge. Available content includes full games,...

     by redeeming a code sent to their email. Upon installation, 3077 MB of hard disk space is reserved for the application. Additional downloads are needed to access the different locations such as Home Square and the Bowling Alley. Those locations' download sizes vary from 16 to 45 MB each.

  • Version 1.03 was the first open beta version and was released on December 11, 2008. The Home icon automatically appeared under the PlayStation Network category on the XMB when players turned on their PlayStation 3 on that day.

  • Version 1.30, released on October 1, 2009, included key features such as Universal Game Launching, 3D item previews in the shopping complex, a camera that lets users take in-Home pictures and save them to their PS3's HDD (this was added a week after the update), new emotes, an advanced targeting system, and users can now determine their cache size (3, 5, 8, or 12 GB) to make navigating Home a smoother experience.

  • Version 1.35 was released on March 11, 2010. Key features included faster loading times, an enhanced login process and a new navigator with categories for Favorites, Personal Spaces, Friends, Explore, and Recommended.

  • Version 1.40, was released on November 11, 2010. Key features include: Grouping and Voice Chat (public voice chat with groups of up to 8 users), Wardrobe improvements (better organization capabilities), update to Chat Log, Character Status (a status for the avatar is displayed below the User's ID), Menu Pad and Navigator improvements, Cross Game Invites, as well as other minor updates. V1.41 improved chat log features added with version 1.40 and fixed several bugs.

  • Version 1.50, released on April 20, 2011, introduced real-time multiplayer, improved physics and graphics, and greater control over collision detection as part of a suite of new technology that developers can use to create connected gaming experiences. Also with v1.5 are more avatar save slots (24), new facial building features, better furniture management, various graphical tweaks to the Navigator, improved object placement options within the personal space, and increased Chat Log options.


The current version of Home is version 1.55 released on September 29, 2011. This update included updates to the Start-up, Wardrobe and Furniture Browser, Menu Pad and General updates. Start-up; improved the layout, design, color scheme and text of the start-up flow and the start-up flow will now display a variety of information depending on how recently the user last visited PlayStation Home. Wardrobe and Furniture Browser; when browsing through a category of items in the wardrobe or furniture browser, it will display the name of the object highlighted (there is an option to turn off display, only display selected items, or display all items; clicking L3 displays more information about items; loading speed is also increased). Menu Pad; added "Help" option for new users and added "Redecorate" (only available in personal space or owned club). Also included is more "Loading Screen Tips" and improved stability.

Room for PlayStation Portable



Room for PSP, a cancelled service, similar to PlayStation Home was being developed for the PSP. Named R∞M, it was being beta-tested in Japan. It was to be added to the PSP in an update and could have been launched directly from the PlayStation Network section of the XMB. Just like in Home, PSP owners would have been able to invite other PSP owners into their rooms to "enjoy real time communication". A closed beta test began in Q4 2009 in Japan. Development of Room halted on April 15, 2010.

See also

  • Avatars Xbox 360 Avatars | Mii (Nintendo)
    Mii
    A is a digital avatar used in Nintendo's Wii and Nintendo 3DS gaming consoles. They allow users to capture a likeness of themselves and others. After creating one using the Wii's Mii Channel or the Nintendo 3DS's Mii Maker, they can be used as playable characters in various titles for the...

     | The Sims
    The Sims (series)
    The Sims is a video game series developed by Maxis and later by The Sims Studio, and published by Electronic Arts. It is one of the most successful video games series of all time...

  • Avatar worlds Room for PlayStation Portable
    Room for PlayStation Portable
    Room for PlayStation Portable was a community-based social networking service that halted development on April 15, 2010...

     | Second Life
    Second Life
    Second Life is an online virtual world developed by Linden Lab. It was launched on June 23, 2003. A number of free client programs, or Viewers, enable Second Life users, called Residents, to interact with each other through avatars...

     | IMVU
    IMVU
    IMVU, Inc. is an online social entertainment destination in which members use 3D avatars to meet new people, chat, create, and play games created by Fydor Guthenschlag. IMVU has over 50 million registered users, 10 million unique visitors per month and three million monthly active users...

     | OLIVE
    Forterra Systems
    Forterra Systems, Inc. was a 3D graphics software company headquartered in San Mateo, California that produced private and secure MMO virtual worlds for corporate, government, defense, medical and educational clients. Forterra Systems also shared a close history with the MMOG There...

     | Active Worlds
    Active Worlds
    Active Worlds is a 3D virtual reality platform. The Active Worlds client runs on Windows. Users assign themselves a name, log into the Active Worlds universe, and explore 3D virtual worlds and environments that other users have built. Users can chat with one another or build structures and areas...

     | There

External links