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GDC: "It's all about software now," says Harrison

Sony Worldwide Studios boss Phil Harrison has told <i>GamesIndustry.biz</i> that the company is set to focus on software now that the "challenges" of recent months are in the past.

Sony Worldwide Studios boss Phil Harrison has told GamesIndustry.biz that the company is set to focus on software now that the "challenges" of recent months are in the past.

"I can't deny that we've had some challenges, but I think those are all behind us," he said.

"It's all about software now, it's not about hardware. It's all about services, it's about the way the industry is changing and the way we hope to be taking a leadership position in that change."

Harrison's comments came in an interview following his GDC keynote speech, in which Sony unveiled the new PlayStation Home service and exclusive title LittleBigPlanet - both of which have been well received by gamers and critics.

"We're taking some pretty giant steps forward... The keynote here at GDC was a very, very significant moment for the evolution of PlayStation 3," he observed.

As examples of Sony's efforts to produce innovative software, Harrison pointed to games such as God of War, LocoRoco, Shadow of the Colossus, Eye Toy and Singstar - "things which wouldn't come out of perhaps a more conservative product development strategy, and certainly wouldn't come from a multi-platform third-party publisher".

He continued, "It's something that as a platform holder we have a responsibility to grow the market, and to try and push the market. What I wanted to do here at GDC was paint a picture for where this industry should, I believe, move - which is to empower the user with user-created content. That's what I was referring to with the Game 3.0 aspect to my presentation."

However, Harrison went on, it's not just up to Sony to move gaming forward. "I hope the industry debates it and challenges it and takes it to another level beyond what we have imagined," he said.

"We're just trying to kick off the debate; we're not trying to own it or control it."

The full GamesIndustry.biz interview with Phil Harrison will be published on the site next week.

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Ellie Gibson


Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.