After spending 20 minutes playing Wipeout in 3D at Sony's CES 2010 booth, I'm officially a believer in gaming in the third dimension. It was only after I was made aware of the fine print did I become grounded in reality. But before we get into the gory details about what you'll need to get this working, let's discuss how it played.
Sony had a few games playable in 3D including Super Stardust HD, Avatar, and Wipeout. The experience playing Wipeout in 3D is truly immersive, with layered graphics giving you a surreal sensation of being in the cockpit of a futuristic racing ship. The HUD (heads-up-display) felt almost touchable, and its subtle shake was very realistic.
If you've played Wipeout, you're aware of the game's high-speed action and weaponry. In two dimensions it's probably enough to give you a headache, but zipping around in 3D was surprisingly quite tolerable. The depth of the buildings and environments around the racetrack were all eye-popping and whole effect almost makes your ship appear to be floating in the space in front of your face.
The Sony rep who we chatted with explained that a to-be-dated firmware update will allow for PS3 gaming in 3D but could not disclose which content would be available at launch. We were also told that the update would allow for full 1080p 3D gaming, but that information seems to conflict with what some fellow CNET editors were told regarding HDMI versions and bandwidth issues. Regardless, the resulting experience will be more than sufficient for any gamer and it seems the PS3's Blu-ray player may turn out to be the only such device that is upgradeable to 3D.
There is a catch, however. The Sony rep explained that PS3 owners would need to purchase a Sony LH or HX series 3D-capable TV to get everything working correctly. We really have a hard time believing that, and even own our TV editor David Katzmaier thinks that PS3 in 3D should work with any 3D HDTV announced at CES. That said, the previously mentioned Sony TVs will come with two sets of active shutter glasses. Of course other glasses that use the same technology should work just as well.
We're ready to welcome 3D gaming with open arms, however it's apparent that it's going to be quite the expensive arrangement.