Welcome back to Network Scorecard, where we pit the two major console networks head to head and see who ends up with the best offerings for the week. The battle continues between Xbox Live and PSN, and as always, anything can happen. Like before, for the sake of this competition, we are including the elite memberships of both networks. That means Xbox Live Gold and PlayStation Plus memberships are in play. However, mobile gaming is not being considered here, so we will not be including any PSP updates.
We have done eight scorecards since this began on August 9th, and the totals through October are as follows: PSN ended up on top with 4 wins over XBL's 2 wins, with 2 scorecards ending in a draw. It's been several weeks since we've been on hiatus. Has anything changed while we've been gone? Let's find out now. We'd better get right into this week's scorecard.
Round 1: Game Demos
- 3D Ultra Mini Golf Adventures 2 Trial
- Start The Party Demo
- Saw II: Flesh & Blood Demo
- John Daly’s ProStroke Gold Demo
- Sky Fighter Demo
- Vanquish Challenge Demo
- CSI: Fatal Conspiracy Demo
- Split Second Multiplayer Demo
Start The Party get things "moving" for PSN (see what I did there?). However, that's playing catch-up for them since XBL already had their Kinect demos up. The CSI demo is catch-up for XBL, since it is also available on PSN. What we are left with is a new Split Second demo for XBL, and a slew of offerings on PSN. Frankly, I'm more intrigued with XBL's demo offerings from previously in the month, including Apache Air Assault, Kinect Joy Ride, and the trial versions of their XBLA titles Faery: Legends of Avalon and The Undergarden.
However, we are only counting what's new this week, and as always, content wins the day. PSN takes this first round.
Round 2: DLC
Both Networks This Week:
- Def Jam Rapstar: 9 separate songs are available from artists including Foxy Brown, Rick Ross, Geto Boyz, and more. All songs are $1.99/160 MP each.
- DJ Hero 2: Electro Hits Mix Pack, $7.99/640 MP.
- Rock Band 3: The Bee Gees Pack 01, $9.99/800 MP. Features six hits by the holy high-voiced ones. All tracks are also available as separate downloads for $1.99/160 MP each.
- Rock Band Network: 5 separate songs by bands Emperor, Holy Grail, Sunny Real Estate and more. These tracks are available for $1.99 each.
- Space Invaders Infinity Gene: Bonus Stage Pack 3, $2.99/240 MP. Add Bonus Stages 5-1 to 5-6.
- Super Street Fighter IV: Ultra Femme Fatale Pack, $3.99.
- Vanquish Weapon Pack: Tri Weapon Pack, $1.99/160 MP.
- Marvel Super Hero Squad: The Infinity Gauntlet: Captain America Collection, $2.99/240 MP. Includes three new player characters: Captain America, Bucky, and Red Skull.
- Front Mission Evolved: Wanzer Pack 3, $3.99/320 MP.
- Fist of the North Star: DLC Pack 2, $4.99/400 MP.
- Comet Crash Bionic Swarm, $4.99. This expansion pack includes 16 new levels and 10 battle maps.
- LittleBigPlanet Anniversary Costume, FREE.
- Worms 2: Armageddon Battle Pack, $4.99. Includes new Deathmatches and Body Count mode, and more.
- PAIN: H8 Squadder Character, $.99. H8 Squadder comes straight at ya from his mama’s basement.
- EyePet Winter Sports Pack, FREE.
- Need For Speed Hot Pursuit: Racer Timesaver Pack, $3.99. SCPD Timesaver Pack, $3.99.
- Crackdown 2: The Deluge Pack, 560 MP.
- Just Cause 2: Chaos Parachute, FREE.
- Super Street Fighter IV: Ultra Challengers Pack 1, 320 MP.
As usual, the bulk of the DLC offerings are shared on both networks. The highlight here is the Bee Gees song pack. C’mon, Jive Talkin and Nights on Broadway in Rock Band? You should be dancing! Small freebies for LittleBigPlanet and Just Cause 2 cancel each other out. We're left with Worms 2 and Need for Speed Hot Pursuit DLC on PSN vs. Crackdown 2 and Super Street FIghter IV extras on XBL.
I would expect the Need For Speed DLC to be a timed exclusive. Regardless, that is the hot game right now (DLC-wise, since there are no extras yet for Black Ops), and the addition of extras for Worms 2 puts PSN over the edge. They take our second round. That puts PSN ahead so far, 2 rounds to none.
Round 3: Downloadable Games
- Crazy Taxi, $9.99 ($7.99 for PS+).
- 3D Ultra Mini Golf Adventure 2, $9.99.
- Sky Fighter, $9.99.
- Prince of Persia: Sands of Time HD, $14.99.
- PSone Import Classics: Money Idol Exchanger, $5.99 ($3.00 for PS+).
- Arcade Hits: Sonic Wings Special, $5.99. ($3.00 for PS+).
- Shatter, $7.99 (FREE for PS+).
- Oddworld: Abe’s Exoddus, $9.99 (FREE for PS+).
- Minis: DYNOGEMS, $1.99 (FREE FOR PS+).
- Alien Breed 3: Descent, 800 MP.
- PAC-MAN Championship Edition DX.
- Lego Rock Band, $19.99.
Crazy Taxi will be on XBL soon, but for now it's a timed exclusive on PSN. The old-school flavor of PAC MAN is always welcome, and Lego Rock Band as a downloadable game is nice for XBL. However, Crazy Taxi and Price of Persia: Sands of Time are too powerful as a one-two punch for PSN. XBL can't handle the hits, and PSN takes this third round. This is turning out to be quite a lopsided week, and it looks like this one's in the refrigerator. However, they pay me the big bucks for all four rounds, so let’s move on to the final round to finish this week out:
Round 4: Sales & Special Values
- Game Show Party Bundle (The Price is Right, Family Feud, and Press Your Luck), $19.99.
- Landit Bandit and Hustle Kings are both being discounted to $5.00 each for PS+ subscribers (regular price $9.99).
- Crash Bandicoot is now $3.00 for PS+ (regular price $5.99).
- Blade Kitten, Permanent Price Change to $9.99 (original price $14.99).
- Droplitz is on sale for $4.99 (original price $9.99).
- Cool Boarders is also on sale for $2.99 (original price $5.99).
- The Mystery of the Crystal Portal is on sale for $2.99 (original price $4.99).
- Also, The Tester Season 2- Episode 3 is available as a free download.
- Deal of the Week: Shank, 800 MP (a savings of 33%).
- Special Introductory Offer on the Gold Family Pack for XBL: Get a bonus month of Family Pack plus 800 MP for $7.69 per month.
- Get 400 MP free when you spend 1600 MP on featured Microsoft Game Studios content.
- GTA IV: The Lost and the Damned: 50% off at 800 MP.
- Not a game but still cool: Avatar: The Last Airbender- Get the TV series for 50% off.
Both networks offer a little something extra this week. PSN has the second season of The Tester, while XBL is offering 50% off of Avatar: The Last Airbender. As far as actual games are concerned, XBL has deals on Shank and DLC for GTA IV. This is aiight,as the kids say, but they are simply overpowered by PSN's numerous jabs, highlighted by the Game Show Party Bundle and half off of Landit Bandit. Again, content is king, and PS+ is simply offering more games and deals this week. XBL can't handle the jabs, and they take a knee in this fourth round.
Final score this week: This week makes history, as we have our first real sweep here on Network Scorecard. PSN was ahead in our tally of our first eight scorecards, and this week continues their dominance. However, I wouldn't count XBL out just yet, as next week brings Alan Wake as a downloadable game. I believe things are going to get interesting real quick as we get closer to the end of the year. So don’t miss out, check back next time for another scorecard and another sizzling batch of network updates.
So, what do you think of this week’s network offerings?
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Source: PlayStation Blog, Major Nelson