This is it. The long wait for a next-gen console announcement is finally over.
The PlayStation 4 has been officially announced and is looking to be a huge step-up from its predecessor both graphically, and in terms of it’s ease of use. And more importantly, it’s time for a long article that is really just a huge pile of informational vomit!
The new system was called a “super charged PC” that will feature a x86 chipset and use an enhanced PC gpu. It will have 8gb of GDDR 5 ram and will have a processor with a total of eight cores. In addition to this, the system will have an extra processor that will allow users to download/update games and apps and play games simultaneously.
Update: While there was no talk of it during the conference, Sony has confirmed that the PS4 will have a Blu-Ray drive.
The PS4 controller “leak” turned out to be true. The Dualshock 4 controller will feature a small touch-pad as well as a light bar that will be recognized by the system’s stereo camera. It appears that this will allow from PSMove-Like control with the system’s standard controller, but it appears that the proper Move controller will also be compatible with the system.
Sony pulled out the big guns and showed a Live Demo of the PS4 running Unreal Engine 4 in real time. The demo showcased incredible particle effects, with sparks emitting realistic light, as well as some very impressive shading effects.
Next was a rather short, but still impressive demo. The System’s capabilities were shown during a demo of the popular Havok physics engine. In the demo there were one-million small cubes that were shown falling from the sky, hitting each each other and tumbling along the environment they were dropped onto. Real-time physics have been a struggle for current-gen consoles, that said — PS4 seems to handle it with ease.
Responsiveness /Ease of Use:
When creating the Ps4, Sony made it a priority to make the system responsive, easy to use, and fast. According to what was said during the press conference, the system will boot up almost instantly and allow you to start up a game as soon as the system is powered on. As I mentioned earlier — unlike with the PS3, players will be able to download games, demos, or apps while still being able to play games at the same time.
In addition the system’s new menu looks sort of similar to the Xbox 360’s dashboard.
As for ease of use, the system will supposedly — over time — grow to learn your taste in videogames. In it’s learning of your preferences, it will download certain games it feels you would enjoy directly to your console before you even decide to purchase it. Making it so as soon as (if) you purchase it, you can play it immediately. On top of that, it appears that all games for the PS4 will feature some form of “demo” that will give players a chance to play a game before they decide to buy it.
On a related note, all downloadable games will be playable almost instantly. Once you decide to buy a game (or download a demo) after a few core files of the game are downloaded, you will be able to stream the game without having to wait hours for a full several-Gigabyte download to finish.
Social networking was also on the forefront of Sony’s mind when making the PS4. The system will have on the fly video recording capabilities and will be able to stream video seamlessly on the internet through Ustream. Players will be able to watch their friends play games, and even take control of their friend’s game over the internet, if given permission — of course.
It seems as though shots have been fired at Nintendo today. The PS Vita will be able to stream games from the PS4 just like the WiiU does with the WiiU gamepad. They called the Vita the “companion to the PS4”. In addition to that, there were talks of being able to stream games from the PS4 to SmartPhones and tablets. To showcase this, they showed the PSVita running “Knack”, a game that was announced today.
Unfortunately, the PS4 will not play PS3 games. At least, not in the traditional way. While the PS4 cannot play PS3 games off of PS3 disks, PS3 game will be available to stream to the PS4, and as I mentioned earlier, the PSVita and Smartphones and Tablets. While this will probably not be available as soon as the system releases, it is still an exciting feature.
While building the PS3, Sony spoke with Many game developers including David Cage and Tim Schafer. During the conference they noted that making sure the developers were able to may high-quality games as soon as the system was released was a priority.
That’s Pretty Much It:
Watching how these next-gen consoles emerge is going to be a very exciting experience! Please stay tuned as we release coverage on the games that were announced for the upcoming system.
The PS4 set to release this Holiday season.