Legally Bound PC Gamer Finds Loophole in Contract to Play PlayStation 3


Back when the PlayStation 3 launched in November of 2006, PC Gamer magazine tempted the gamers waiting in front of the Sony Metreon in San Francisco (the official PS3 North American launch headquarters) with a Faustian bargain (look it up). Our sister publication offered to give away a $7,500 Falcon Northwest gaming PC to one of the campers if they willingly relinquished their place in line. The catch: the unfaithful console fanboy who accepted the PC would also have to sign a legally binding contract preventing him from owning a PlayStation 3 for three years – an eternity in game industry time.

The (in our opinion) lucky gamer who volunteered to defect to PC gaming was one Neal Chung-Lee, a local student had at that point been waiting in line for several days to be the one of the first people to own a PS3. But after selling his console-loving soul to PC gaming (and making the front page of Digg), Neal fell off of our radar. That is, until we bumped into him this past week. And you’ll never guess where.

Our first meeting at E3 was with 2K Games, the publisher of the upcoming PC titles Borderlands, Civilization: Colonization, and Champions Online. 2K Games is also the publisher of Bioshock, and gave a presentation of the planned Bioshock PlayStation 3 port. Halfway though the presentation, we noticed that the 2K Games employee “driving” the demo looked a little familiar. After checking his nametag and doing a quick Google search on our phones, we confirmed our suspicions: it was Neal!

We caught up with Neal after the game demonstration to see what he had been up to since signing the contract. He found a job working at 2K as a game analyst, playtesting upcoming games to provide feedback to developers. The Falcon PC is still at his house, and he’s used it as his primary gaming system for multi-platform games like Bioshock. And when asked whether he or his housemates currently own a PlayStation 3, Neal responded “No” without any hesitation. However, he was also quick to add “But I have two of them on my desk at work.”

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