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PS3 hits Europe: March 23, ???599 ($776), 60GB only

Well friends, the moment many of you have been waiting for has finally arrived: Sony's just lifted the months-long veil of secrecy that's been shrouding the PlayStation 3's impending European launch. The good news -- and there's not much of it here, folks -- is that March 23rd is indeed the date you need to circle on your calendars; all that talk of an April release turned out to be bullplop. However, there will only be a million consoles available for the entire continent, and as we mentioned before, each and every one of those will be of the pricier 60GB variety. Now, will they cost the same $600 that consumers have been paying in the US? Hardly; expect to drop a cool £425 (that's over 840 freakin' bucks) for the privilege of getting your PS3 on -- assuming that you can even procure one without looting or rioting, that is. We'll have more on the launch as this story develops, but we're thinking that you might wanna stop wasting your time here in favor of securing a place in line at your local gaming retailer -- as we know all too well, things are gonna start getting pretty hairy pretty quick.

Update: Several details need to be clarified (sorry, but this has been a bit confusing; Bloomberg's already on its fifth update). As some helpful readers pointed out, the £425 figure is a UK-only price, and it includes the VAT. The rest of Europe will be paying €599 ($776) for their little slices of gaming heaven, while the folks down under will be shelling out A$999.95 ($780) and NZ$1,199.95 ($840) in Australia and New Zealand, respectively.