Sony Computer Entertainment

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Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc.
Type Subsidiary
Industry Interactive entertainment
Computer and video games
Founded November 16, 1993 (1993-11-16)
Headquarters Tokyo, Japan
Key people Andrew House
(President and Group CEO)
Shuhei Yoshida
(President, Worldwide Studios)
Shawn Layden
(President and CEO, SCE America)
Jim Ryan
(President and CEO, SCE Europe)
Hiroshi Kawano
(President and CEO, SCE Japan)
Products Games consoles
PlayStation
PlayStation 2
PlayStation 3
PlayStation 4
PlayStation Portable
PlayStation Vita
Games
God of War series
Gran Turismo series
Heavy Rain
inFAMOUS series
Jak and Daxter series
Killzone series
LittleBigPlanet series
MLB: The Show series
MotorStorm series
Ratchet & Clank series
Resistance series
Sly Cooper series
SOCOM U.S. Navy SEALs series
Tearaway
The Last of Us
Uncharted series
Employees 8,000[1]
Parent Sony Corporation
Subsidiaries SCE America
SCE Europe
SCE Japan
SCE Worldwide Studios
Gaikai
Sony Online Entertainment
Website www.scei.co.jp/index_e.html

Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. (SCEI) (Japanese: 株式会社ソニー・コンピュータエンタテインメント) is a Japanese multinational 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. The company was established on November 16, 1993 in Tokyo, Japan, prior to the launch of the original PlayStation video game system.

Sony Computer Entertainment handles the research & development, production, and sales of both hardware and software for the PlayStation line of handheld and home console video game systems. It is also a developer and publisher of video game titles and is composed of several subsidiaries covering the company's biggest markets: North America, Europe and Asia. SCE's largest workforce is in the United States and has 8000 employees in more than 50 countries.[1] The company has sold more than 400 million PlayStation consoles worldwide.

History[edit]

The company's North American operations, Sony Computer Entertainment of America (SCEA), were originally established in May 1995 as a division of Sony Electronic Publishing.[2] They were located in Foster City and headed by Steve Race. In the months prior to the release of PlayStation in Western markets, the operations were restructured: All videogame marketing from Sony Imagesoft was folded into SCEA in July 1995, with most affected employees transferred from Santa Monica to Foster City.[3] On August 7, 1995, Steve Race unexpectedly resigned and was named CEO of Spectrum HoloByte three days later.[3] He was replaced by Sony Electronics veteran Martin Homlish.[3] As part of a worldwide restructuring at the beginning of 1997, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. (currently Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC) was reestablished as a wholly owned subsidiary of SCEI.[4] On July 1, 2002 Chairman of SCE, Shigeo Maruyama, was replaced by Tamotsu Iba as Chairman. Jack Tretton and Phil Harrison were also promoted to Senior Vice President of SCE.[5]

On September 14, 2005, SCE formed Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios (SCE WWS),[6] a single internal entity overseeing all wholly owned development studios within SCE. It is responsible for the creative and strategic direction of development and production of all computer entertainment software by all SCE-owned studios, all of which is produced exclusively for the PlayStation family of consoles. Shuhei Yoshida was named as President of SCE WWS on May 16, 2008,[7] replacing Kazuo Hirai, who was serving interim after inaugural SCE WWS President Phil Harrison left the company in early 2008.[8] On November 30, 2006 President of SCE Ken Kutaragi was appointed as Chairman of SCE while Kazuo Hirai, President of SCEA was promoted to President of SCE.[9] On April 26, 2007 Ken Kutaragi resigned from his position as Chairman of SCE and Group CEO, passing on his duties to President of SCE, Kazuo Hirai.[10]

On April 15, 2009 David Reeves, President and CEO of SCE Europe, announced that he would be resigning from his post. He had joined the company in 1995 and was appointed as Chairman of SCEE in 2003 and President in 2005.[11] His role of President and CEO of SCEE would be taken over by Andrew House who joined Sony Corporation in 1990.[12] On December 8, 2005, video game developer Guerrilla Games, developers of the Killzone series, was acquired by Sony Computer Entertainment as part of its SCE WWS.[13] On January 24, 2006 video game developer Zipper Interactive, developers of the SOCOM series, was acquired by Sony Computer Entertainment as part of its SCE WWS.[14] On September 20, 2007 video game developers Evolution Studios and Bigbig Studios, developers of the MotorStorm series, were acquired by Sony Computer Entertainment as part of its SCE WWS.[15]

On April 1, 2010 Sony Computer Entertainment was restructured to bring together Sony's mobile electronics and personal computers divisions. The main Japanese division of SCE was temporarily renamed to "SNE Platform Inc." (SNEP) on April 1, 2010 and split into two division focusing on different aspects namely "Sony Computer Entertainment Inc." consisting of a 1,300 employees which focus on the console business, and the network service business consisting of 60 to 70 employees. The network service business of SCE was absorbed into Sony Corp's Network Products & Service Group (NPSG) which has already been headed by Kazuo Hirai since April 2009. The original Sony Computer Entertainment was then dissolved after the restructure.[16][17][18] The North American and European branches of Sony Computer Entertainment was affected by the restructure and will remain as SCEA and SCEE. Sony Computer Entertainment CEO and Sony Corporation EVP, Kazuo Hirai, is leading both departments.[19]

On March 2, 2010 video game developer Media Molecule, developers of the PlayStation 3 game LittleBigPlanet, was acquired by Sony Computer Entertainment as part of its SCE WWS.[20] As of August 23, 2010, the headquarters of the company moved from Minami-Aoyama to the Sony City (Sony Corporation's headquarters) in Kōnan, Minato, Tokyo.[21] On April 20, 2011, Sony Computer Entertainment was the victim of an attack on its PlayStation Network system, which also affected its online division, Sony Online Entertainment. On August 1, 2011, video game developer Sucker Punch Productions, developers of the Sly Cooper series and inFAMOUS series, was also acquired.[22] On January 2012, BigBig Studios developers of the Pursuit Force series, MotorStorm: Arctic Edge and Little Deviants was closed and SCE Cambridge Studio is renamed as Guerrilla Cambridge, becoming a sister studio to Guerrilla Games.[23][24] On March 2012, Zipper Interactive developers of the SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs series, MAG and Unit 13 was closed.[25] On June 25, 2012, Kazuo Hirai retired as chairman of Sony Computer Entertainment, however, he remains on the board of directors.[26] On July 2, 2012, Sony Computer Entertainment acquired Gaikai, a cloud-based gaming service.[27] On August 2012, SCE Studio Liverpool developer of the Wipeout and Formula One series was closed.[28] On March 6, 2014, Sony Computer Entertainment of America President and CEO, Jack Tretton, announced he was resigning from his position at the end of the month, citing a mutual agreement between himself and SCEA not to renew his contract. Tretton had worked at SCEA since 1995, and was a founding member of the company's executive team. He was involved in the launch of all PlayStation platforms in North America, including the original PlayStation, PlayStation 2, PSP, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Network, PlayStation Vita, and PlayStation 4. Tretton was replaced by Shawn Layden, who was the vice-president and chief operating officer (COO) of Sony Network Entertainment International, effective April 1, 2014.[29]

Hardware[edit]

Main article: PlayStation
PlayStation brand logo

Sony Computer Entertainment produces the PlayStation family of video game hardware consisting of consoles and handhelds. Sony's first wide home console release, the PlayStation (codenamed "PSX" during development, currently "PSone"), was initially designed to be a CD-ROM drive add-on for Nintendo's Super Nintendo Entertainment System (a.k.a. Super Famicom in Japan) video game console, in response to Sega's Mega-CD. When the prospect of releasing the system as an add-on dissolved, Sony redesigned the machine into a standalone unit. The PlayStation was released in Japan on December 3, 1994 and later in North America on September 9, 1995. Currently the highest selling home console of all time, SCE's second home console, the PlayStation 2 (PS2) was released in Japan on March 4, 2000, and later in North America and Europe in October and November 2000, respectively. The PS2 is powered by a proprietary central processing unit, the Emotion Engine, and was the first video game console to have DVD playback functionality included out of the box. Initially, the system was criticized for its complex development environment, due mainly to the proprietary hardware included. However, despite these complaints, the PlayStation 2 received widespread support from third party developers throughout its lifespan on the market. Today it has sold up to 150 million units worldwide. The PlayStation Portable (PSP) is SCE's first foray into the small handheld console market, which was and to this date still is dominated by Nintendo. Its development was first announced during SCE's E3 conference in 2003, and it was officially unveiled during their E3 conference on May 11, 2004. The system was released in Japan on December 12, 2004, in North America on March 24, 2005 and in Europe and Australia on September 1, 2005. The console has since seen two major redesigns, with new features including a smaller size, more internal memory, a better quality LCD screen and a lighter weight. A new design, the PSP Go, was released on October 1, 2009 for North America and Europe and on November 1, 2009 for Japan. It has a 3.8" LCD which slides up to reveal the main controls. The PSP Go is 45% lighter and 56% smaller than the original PSP and does not support UMD. The device does support Bluetooth and will be completely digital meaning all media must be downloaded or transferred to the device which has 16 GB of internal flash memory. The PlayStation 3 (PS3) was launched in November 2006. It utilizes a unique processing architecture, the Cell microprocessor, a proprietary technology developed by Sony in conjunction with Toshiba and IBM. The graphics processing unit, the RSX 'Reality Synthesizer', was co-developed by Nvidia and Sony. Several variations of the PS3 have been released, each with slight hardware and software differences, each denoted by the varying size of the included hard disk drive. The PlayStation Vita is the successor to the PlayStation Portable as part of the PlayStation brand of gaming devices. It was released in Japan and parts of Asia on December 17, 2011[30] and in Europe, Australia and North America on February 22, 2012.[31][32] Internally, the Vita features a 4 core ARM Cortex-A9 MPCore processor and a 4 core SGX543MP4+ graphics processing unit, as well as LiveArea software as its main user interface, which succeeds the XrossMediaBar.[33][34] The PlayStation 4 was announced as the successor to the PlayStation 3[35] and was launched in North America on November 15, 2013,[36] in Europe on November 29, 2013 [37] and in Japan on February 22, 2014.[38]

Software development studios[edit]

Asia

North America

Europe

First Party (SCE WWS)

Asia

North America

Europe

Second Party

Asia

North America

Europe

Third Party

First Party Studios

Second Party Studios

Third Party Studios

Defunct

Owned franchises and properties[edit]

Corporate affairs[edit]

SCEA headquarters in Foster City, California.

The President, and Group CEO of SCE is currently Andrew House, replacing Kaz Hirai, who himself had replaced longtime CEO Ken Kutaragi, also known as "The Father of the PlayStation".[52] Kutaragi officially retired from his executive position at SCE on June 19, 2007, and now holds the title of Honorary Chairman at the company.[53] Shawn Layden and Jim Ryan currently serve as President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, respectively. In June 2011, it was announced that Kaz Hirai was to become Chairman of Sony Computer Entertainment and Andrew House to become President and Group CEO as of September 1, 2011.[54]

Headquarters[edit]

SCE currently has three main headquarters around the world: Kōnan, Minato, Tokyo, Japan (Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. & Sony Computer Entertainment Japan Asia) which control operations in Asia; San Mateo, California, US (Sony Computer Entertainment America) which controls operations in North America; and London, United Kingdom (Sony Computer Entertainment Europe) which controls operations in Europe and Oceania. SCE also has smaller offices and distribution centers in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, US; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Melbourne, Australia; and Seocho-gu, Seoul, South Korea.

Game approval[edit]

SCE evaluates and approves games for its consoles. The process is more strict than for the Nintendo Seal of Quality, and developers submit game concepts to Sony early in the design process. Each SCE unit has its own evaluation process; SCEE, for example, approved Billy the Wizard for its consumers but SCEA did not. The company sometimes imposes additional restrictions, such as when it prohibited PlayStation 1 and 2 games from being ported to the PSP without 30% of content being new to the Sony console.[55]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b PlayStation Close to 8,000 Employees: We Have a Lot of Fun in What We Do; Proud of Cultural Diversity. Dualshockers.com
  2. ^ "Sony latest to toss hat in vid game arena". The Hollywood Reporter (Hollywood Reporter, Inc.). May 19, 1994. 
  3. ^ a b c "Sony in Disarray on Eve of PlayStation Debut". Television Digest with Consumer Electronics: 9. August 14, 1995. ISSN 0497-1515. 
  4. ^ "Business Development/North America". Sony Computer Entertainment. Retrieved 2010-11-12. 
  5. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment Announces Changes in Corporate Officers" (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. July 1, 2002. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  6. ^ "SCE Establishes SCE Worldwide Studios" (PDF) (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. September 14, 2005. Retrieved 2005-09-14. 
  7. ^ "SCEI Announces New President of SCE Worldwide Studios" (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. May 16, 2008. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  8. ^ "SCE Worldwide Studios Phil Harrison Resigns" (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. February 25, 2008. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  9. ^ "SCE Announces New Management Team" (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. November 30, 2006. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  10. ^ "SCEI and Sony announce Executive Management Transition at Sony Computer Entertainment Inc." (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. April 26, 2007. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  11. ^ "David Reeves to Retire From Sony Computer Entertainment Europe" (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. April 15, 2009. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  12. ^ "Andrew House named as President and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe" (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. April 15, 2009. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  13. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment Acquires Guerrilla Games" (Press release). London: Sony Computer Entertainment. December 8, 2005. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  14. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment Acquires Zipper Interactive" (Press release). Foster City: Sony Computer Entertainment. January 24, 2006. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  15. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment Acquires Evolution Studios and Bigbig Studios" (Press release). Tokyo: Sony Computer Entertainment. September 20, 2007. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  16. ^ "ソニー、ネットワーク強化に向けSCEのネット部門を吸収" (in Japanese). Impress Watch Corporation. 2010-02-24. Retrieved 2010-05-15. 
  17. ^ Ivan, Tom (February 24, 2010). "Sony To Restructure Networked Services Business". Edge. Retrieved 2010-05-15. 
  18. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment to focus on games, temporarily renamed ‘SNEP’". El33t Media. February 25, 2010. Retrieved 2010-05-15. 
  19. ^ Ashcroft, Brian (February 24, 2010). "Sony Computer Entertainment To Become SNEP (Temporarily)". Kotaku. Retrieved 2010-05-15. 
  20. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment Acquires Media Molecule" (Press release). London: Sony Computer Entertainment. March 2, 2010. Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  21. ^ "Notification of Office Relocation" (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. August 9, 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  22. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment Acquires Sucker Punch Productions" (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. August 2, 2011. 
  23. ^ Sony closes and restructures two UK studios. Develop-online.net
  24. ^ Happy holidays from Guerrilla!. PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  25. ^ Confirmed Sony Closes Zipper Interactive. IGN.com
  26. ^ "Executive Appointments" (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. June 25, 2012. 
  27. ^ Sony to Acquire Gaikai. IGN.com
  28. ^ Sony closes WipEout developer Sony Liverpool. Eurogamer.net
  29. ^ Makuch, Eddie (March 6, 2014). "Veteran Playstation boss Jack Tretton to step down". Gamespot. Retrieved March 6, 2014. 
  30. ^ "TGS: Sony Reveals Vita's Release Date - PSP News at IGN". Psp.ign.com. 2011-09-14. Retrieved 2011-09-14. 
  31. ^ "PlayStation Vita Launches From 22 February 2012 – PlayStation.Blog.Europe". PlayStation Blog. Sony. October 19, 2011. Retrieved October 19, 2011. 
  32. ^ "Get Ready: PS Vita is Coming February 22nd – PlayStation Blog". PlayStation Blog. Sony. October 18, 2011. Retrieved October 19, 2011. 
  33. ^ Cullen, Johnny (January 24, 2011). "Sony outs tech specs for NGP". VG247. Retrieved January 25, 2011. 
  34. ^ Vlad Savov (January 27, 2011). "Sony's next PSP, codenamed NGP". Engadget. AOL. Retrieved January 29, 2011. 
  35. ^ "Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Introduces PlayStation®4" (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. February 20, 2013. Retrieved 2013-03-12. 
  36. ^ PS4 Launches in North America on November 15th, GamesCom Wrap-up. PlayStation.Blog.
  37. ^ PlayStation at GamesCom 2013: The best place to play. PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  38. ^ PlayStation®4 Sales Surpass 5.3 Million Units Worldwide. Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (Press Release)
  39. ^ a b Open Me! PlayStation Vita. PlayStation.com
  40. ^ Naughty Dog Careers. Naughtydog.com
  41. ^ Entwined Announced, Out Now on PS4. PlayStation.Blog
  42. ^ PlayStation GamesCom 2013 Press Conference. YouTube.com
  43. ^ Sony XDev Europe. Official Site
  44. ^ Worldwide Studios/XDev. XDev on Worldwidestudios.net
  45. ^ Introducing WiLD a PS4 exclusive from Rayman creator Michel Ancel. PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  46. ^ a b GUNS UP! Coming to PS4, PS3, PS Vita. PlayStation.Blog.
  47. ^ Hustle Kings is coming soon to PS4. PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  48. ^ a b Control the undead in The Hungry Horde on PS Vita. PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  49. ^ PS Vita's BigFest is also coming to PS4 and PS3. PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  50. ^ PS Vita's BigFest is also coming to PS4 and PS3.PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  51. ^ Introducing WiLD a PS4 exclusive from Rayman creator Michel Ancel.PlayStation.Blog.Europe
  52. ^ "SCE Announces New Management Team" (PDF) (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. November 30, 2006. Retrieved 2006-11-30. 
  53. ^ "SCEI and Sony announce Executive Management Transition at Sony Computer Entertainment Inc" (Press release). Sony Corporation. April 26, 2007. Retrieved 2007-04-27. 
  54. ^ "SCEI Announces New Management Team" (Press release). Sony Computer Entertainment. 2011-06-29. Retrieved 2011-06-29. 
  55. ^ Kohler, Chris (2008-03-05). "Opinion: Why Wii Shovelware Is a Good Thing". Wired. Retrieved 7 July 2014. 

External links[edit]