While those rowdy Aussies are ready to party for the PS3 launch tomorrow, the English are being their typical restrained selves…forgive the stereotypes, guys.
Several UK retailers are canceling their PS3 midnight launches due to concerns that things would get too crazy. Japan and the U.S. suffered through some ugliness on the eve of the PS3 launch last November, and it seems that has made all of Europe plenty nervous. The earlier announced midnight launch festivities at the Virgin Megastore on Oxford Street will continue, but their neighbors – Game and HMV – won't do a midnight launch, and will open at the normal time tomorrow morning.
Both pre-orders and anticipation for Sony's new console has been high across the pond, and they're no more immune to mob insanity than anybody else. However, given the correct planning and security, we don't see why a midnight launch would be such a disastrous event. On the other hand, retailers do have to think about the potential backlash, so we can understand why some would rather not risk it.