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Long read: The beauty and drama of video games and their clouds

"It's a little bit hard to work out without knowing the altitude of that dragon..."

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After a PS2?

Apart from last week's news of Gameplay's pre-order deal, it seems that the fuel crisis in the UK has left retailers all across the country with plenty of pre-order forms still available. Areas like the Midlands, the North and Scotland still have plenty of forms, while retailers in the South-East are fresh out. The problem from the perspective of anyone attempting to pre-order Sony's next generation console is that it won't be available in large quantities until Spring of next year, and anyone desperate to get hold of one until then will have to reserve it in person by filling in a form. Meanwhile, the mainstream press in the Capital have been seizing upon the Dixons group's latest offers for PS2 consumers. The deals will include the console, two games and one movie on DVD for £399 and a similar deal with more games and DVDs for £499, the "PS2 Ultimate Pack". The press reports have chastised the group for these offers, but to be blunt, who cares? If Dixons can shift more PS2 units based on these deals then so be it and good for them. There's also a standalone £299 deal, but what's the point in that? At the end of the day, many retailers are preparing to make an awful lot of money out of the PlayStation 2 and its games, and if you want to be playing one come Christmas morn, make damned sure you get yourself a pre-order form.