Today, I would like to say goodbye to one of the industry´s most notorious figures. He is often referred to as the ´the father of the PlayStation´. TIME magazine even called him the ´Gutenberg of videogames´ once.
More recently, though, the Wall Street Journal called him ´uncommunicative´, a ´renegade´ and a ´stumbling block´ for Sony Corp.´s success. These allegations were based on an interview with the company´s CEO, Howard Stringer.
To most gamers and even media outlets, he is now known merely as ´Krazy Ken´ or, as I like to call him, ´Ken "Krusty" Kutaragi´.
Why the fall from grace? Well, let us recall some of Krusty´s more memorable quotes.
You can communicate to a new cybercity. Did you see the movie The Matrix? Same interface. Same concept. Starting from next year, you can jack into The Matrix! (about the PlayStation2)
Newsweek (via an excerpt from Dean Takahashi´s book ´Xbox360 Uncloaked´ on 1UP), March 2000
I'm not going to reveal [the PS3's] price today. I'm going to only say that it'll be expensive. (...)
I'm aware that with all these technologies, the PS3 can't be offered at a price that's targeted towards households.
PlayStation meeting speech (via CNN Money), July 2005
[We want] consumers to think to themselves 'I will work more hours to buy one'. We want people to feel that they want it, irrespective of anything else. (about the PlayStation3´s price)
Toyo Keizai (via T3), July 2005
It's probably too cheap. (about the PlayStation3´s price)
Of course, this is a number that we announced having made sure we can definitely prepare it. There is the possibility of unexpected problems like an earthquake or theft, so I won't say it's absolute, but if this type of trouble does not occur, there's no problem with this number. (about SCE´s global shipment target)
IT Media (via IGN), May 2006
I believe we made the most beautiful thing in the world. Nobody would criticize a renowned architect's blueprint that the position of a gate is wrong. It's the same as that. (about a design flaw with the PSP´s square button)
Nikkei Business (via Gamespot), January 2005
Cell will make possible a transformation in entertainment like that from novels to movies.
Forbes, February 2005
The PlayStation  is not a game machine. We've never once called it a game machine. (...) With the PS3, our intentions have been to create a machine with supercomputer calculation capabilities for home entertainment.
Impress PC Watch (via CNET), May 2005
Beating us for a short moment is like accidentally winning a point from a Shihan [Karate master], and Microsoft is still not a black belt. (about competition from Microsoft´s Xbox)
Asahi Shinbun (via Eurogamer), June 2005
We're not going to equip [the PS3 with] a HDD by default, because no matter how much [capacity] we put in it, it won't be enough.
Impress PC Watch (via CVG), June 2005
The idea of a computer architecture that emulates living organisms struck me as I was swimming through a sea of ideas. A network made of cells that works like a single computer? I felt this wild urge to try out that sort of thing. (...)
Just think of the Apollo program that sent human beings to the moon, or Celera's project to analyze the human genome. Not every engineer has the chance to participate in such projects that can impact the course of the history. Cell is exactly this kind of project. (...) Thirty years from now, some members of our team may end up being looked up to just like Shockley or Moore. (about the opportunity for engineers to work on the development of the Cell chip)
Tech On, April 2005
I have aimed at bringing about a computer revolution. (about the PlayStation3 being a computer rather than a games console) (...)
Application programs can no longer directly access the hardware; instead they will have to be written in high-level, object-oriented language. That was done for security reasons: If processors of high performance and wide bandwidth like the Cell were linked together without sufficient security, a worldwide system crash could occur with one attack. (about the ease of developing games for the PS3) (...)
The model image for the Cell-based network may be the Internet: Servers around the world form one virtual "computer," and each PC accesses it. One Cell or cluster of Cells can also function as a server; but whereas the present Internet mainly handles characters, applications on the Cell network will also handle semantics and reasoning. (...)
I am sure that a technology revolution is about to occur, not only within Sony but throughout the digital consumer electronics industry.
EE Times Asia, June 2005
Oh, my word. I was aware of most of those quotes, but I had evidently missed the best ones, like him comparing the PlayStation2 to the technology seen in the movie ´The Matrix´.
Also, believing that some engineers on the Cell chip development team may later be looked upon with the same regard as the father of Silicon Valley or the founder of Intel is another great one. And just think: if the engineers were to ascend into such spheres, where would that leave Kutaragi?
I cannot believe that this clown said all those things. The term hubris does not even start to describe his state of mind. I called for his resignation back in November, after it emerged that Krusty had been personally responsible for losing the console´s exclusivity of the ´Grand Theft Auto´ and ´Assassin´s Creed´ franchises. After all this, the only possible response to him leaving is ´good riddance´.
Just a little interesting tidbit which I stumbled over while researching this compilation: Kutaragi never said "Microsoft shoots for the moon. Sony shoots for the sun" or "The PS3 will instill discipline in our children and adults alike. Everyone will know discipline." Those quotes were fakes invented by Kotaku.
Sources: 1UP, CNN Money, T3, IGN, Gamespot, Forbes, CNET, Eurogamer, CVG, Tech On, EE Times Asia
Thanks to: Joystiq, Stinkles, Shacknews, ChairmanSteve, Kotaku, PS3 Today, IGN, The Guardian