PlayStation Home director Jack Buser bragged about the social network's latest population accomplishment, saying that Sony now has an impressive 12 million users signed up for the service worldwide. Why was Sony broadcasting that particular figure at GDC?
Buser was courting developers looking for a new platform, part of Sony's attempts to transform its 3D social network into a 3D gaming platform. According to Sony, Home is an "extremely sticky" service, that of those 12 million, the average "dwell" in Home is a good 60 minutes and that 85% of the PlayStation 3 owners who log in to the virtual world will log in again.
Expect PlayStation Home to feature "total game integration" with future PS3 games, both PSN and disc-based, in the coming years. Buser pitched the developers in the audience with the low cost, small team appeal of bringing their mini-games, short form games and massively multiplayer online projects to Home, noting that Home virtual items, like clothing, sell "really well," but that usable virtual goods in games like MMO Sodium One sell "really, really well."