Hideo Kojima, who created the Metal Gear Solid game series, demonstrated the newest gaming feature from game maker Konami today: the ability to transfer save games between consoles and handheld gaming devices so you can continue your gaming experience on the fly. Kojima gave the demo at a pre-E3 event in San Francisco.
It’s part of Kojima’s vision of a future in gaming that is not segmented by multiple consoles — where the same game works on any device, like a PlayStation 3 or a PlayStation Portable (PSP) device, or on any of the newest consoles coming out, like Sony’s Next Generation Portable (NGP). Gamers can plug their PSP device into their PS3 and transfer a save game seamlessly to the portable device. The “Transfarring” service, which still uses a physical cable, is likely a precursor to Sony’s expected cloud-based save game storage system — which could make transferring save games between the PSP and PS3 even easier.
The service will initially launch with the Metal Gear Solid HD collection, which features Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty and Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, as well as a PS3 version of Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. The last game is already available on the PSP, and it will be the first device to feature the Transfarring feature — letting gamers take their game from a high-definition version of the game on a television to their portable consoles whenever they have to leave the house. The Metal Gear Solid HD collection will be available in November this year — and it’s also coming to the Xbox 360, but that collection won’t feature the Transfarring service.
The new service won’t cost gamers anything extra, and the new games won’t require users to purchase a game for both the PlayStation 3 and PSP — or, in a few months, Sony’s NGP. The Metal Gear Solid collection will, for example, come with a PSP version of the game. Future games will come with download codes that let NGP and PSP owners download the games and then play the games on either device.
The service will only be available on Konami’s games for now, even though Sony is launching a PlayStation 3 “remaster” program that encourages PSP game developers to recreate their games for the PlayStation 3 with high-definition graphics. Some PSP games have been criticized because they are limited by the device’s control scheme, so the PSP remaster games also give developers a chance to give gamers access to better controls.
Kojima said he will not make an appearance at E3 this year because he will be focusing on his next two projects, Metal Gear Solid Rising and an unnamed second project. Metal Gear Solid Rising will not come out until next year, he said. Kojima was tight-lipped about his next project, but he did demonstrate a brand-new engine that looks like a suped up version of the engine that powered Metal Gear Solid 4 with some spectacular graphics.
Transfarring will be available on most future Konami and Kojima titles, Kojima said. That includes a remastered version of Zone of the Enders and Zone of the Enders: The Second Runner — two cult classics in a franchise that has since gone into the shadows since the Metal Gear Solid series has exploded in popularity. Kojima revealed the Zone of the Enders HD collection, along with the Metal Gear Solid HD collection, at the pre-E3 event. The Zone of the Enders HD collection should be available sometime next year — and the games will appear on both the PlayStation 3 and NGP, which gives us a vague release window for Sony’s NGP.
You can see a full video of Kojima’s presentation for the new gaming service below.
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