My Thoughts on Sony's PS4 Announcement

warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/buckman/public_html/neo/modules/advanced_forum/advanced_forum.module on line 492.
Bill Loguidice's picture

DualShock 4DualShock 4Though some were no doubt disappointed in Sony's PS4 announcement for every reason from general ennui with the whole videogame thing to a passionate allegiance to a competing platform, I fail to see how any real videogame enthusiast can come away anything but impressed at the promise of it all. The keyword of course is "promise," since everything sounds great on paper, but we don't really know how much will be executed how soon (and how well), nor did we have an actual appearance by the apparently camera-shy console itself. You can find many summaries of what Sony did unveil online, including a good one by PlayStation Universe, but I'll try to cover some of the high level highlights.

First off, the name. Many of us expected both Sony and Microsoft to do away with the whole numbering of their consoles business with their respective next gen systems, but - and this is ultimately not surprise considering Sony's recent focus on its young, but rich videogame history - PS4 it is. Second, the release window is targeted to holiday 2013. No real surprise there either, and it's all but a lock for Microsoft to follow suit. Next, was the impressive third party support, something that Nintendo focused on with the Wii U, but something that their third parties have not really followed through on, and a situation that may not greatly improve. It's all but a lock Sony's third party software supporters will follow through, with titles like Diablo III and Destiny already making strong statements. Rounding out the solid, but unremarkable stuff was an evolved DualShock controller, better Kinect-like camera (PlayStation 4 Eye), suspend mode (to put the system to sleep, but immediately pick up right where you left off when you come back), new Windows 8-like interface, and a beefy processor, graphics card, and memory system. That all translates to real-time performance similar to a high end PC--at least based on the quality of the demos shown.

Of course, the most impressive part to me was Sony's streaming and social integration, and this is the part that will be hardest to follow through on, but could be a genuine difference maker. Powered by Gaikai, the PS4 will be a streaming powerhouse, able to stream updates, demos, and even games (the issue of backwards compatibility of course can be handled in this manner as well), instantly. In other words, no more waiting minutes to hours for an update or anything else to come through because you can play the stream as it downloads. This streaming technology and extra processing power will also allow instant recording and sharing of gameplay (to Facebook, YouTube, etc.), with the ability for others to spectate in real-time, and even jump in and take control if you want them to. Besides smartphone and tablet integration, you can also stream PS4 games in real-time to the Vita, which is a direct stab at replicating one of the Wii U's most compelling features, and may yet save the struggling handheld.

Again, we don't know how well all that will work in principal, plus we have no images of the final console, nor pricing, though Sony has promised regular information updates. I think if Sony can deliver on most of the stated features at launch and get the price point to what the Wii U currently sells for, they should have a hit on their hands and reverse the poor showings of the last three videogame system launches (3DS, Vita, and Wii U). Goodness knows this industry could use an instant success, something I've lamented in another recent blog post. Obviously, if the price comes in too high or too many of the stated features fail to materialize in a timely manner (a la most of Nintendo's TVii features), then that would leave only Microsoft to help our industry save some face in the short term.

What did you guys think of Sony's showing? I'd love to hear your thoughts, so sound off in the comments.



Streaming video by Ustream

Comments

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
D3
ruthan wrote:

Diablo III, without mouse and keyboard will be suffering.. such FPS experience, but console players are used to.
Clock has true, Diablo III best selling game in first week on PC all time, realy dont like this game, because game world almost completly lost atmosphere for my, but for majority is still ok.

Technically there's nothing mouse/keyboard critical about Diablo III, particularly if you change the movement to 1:1 control rather than click and follow. In any case, the PS4 gamepad has the touchpad in the middle, so that may ease accessing things like inventory if there's not a more elegant solution. It's the PS3 conversion that I'm more curious about, since that doesn't have many of the special features of the PS4.

n/a
Mark Vergeer
Mark Vergeer's picture
Offline
Joined: 01/16/2006
My Playstation 4 Ponderings (2-21-13)

After I recorded and uploaded this video, I discovered some articles that indicate that Sony is in fact NOT prohibiting gameplay of second hand games on the PS4 and also that the system doesn't seem to have to be connected online all the time in order to be able to play the games. That is a HUGE change and improvement for me. And potentially a game-changer when it comes on my stance on the system.

So the comments I make on games being tied to the machine may perhaps not to valid anymore for the PS4 still Microsoft still seems to be on that dead-end streak. Still very little is known about the console and whether physical media is supported at all. If they do they might only release small quantities making it scarce and downloads easier.

So potential good news to me, Playstation 4 will not block used games
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2013-02-21-sony-tells-eurogamer-playst...

Audio track by ZomebieAndy1979
http://www.youtube.com/user/zombieandy1979

n/a
sstacks
Offline
Joined: 11/05/2012
The promise

Is a good way to put it.

Sounds great, but at this point they are casting a vision rather than showing a product. The cynic in me says they just want to get press before Xbox but don't have anything to really show. Standard PR stuff, don't hold it against them.

I have a PS3 and actually use it more for video than gaming, but I hope the PS4 will be backwards compatible for the games I do have.

Also, a big win I see in all this is like Bill said the Vita integration. I keep liking the hardware of the Vita but wondering if I should sell it, and this will probably be the factor that encourages me to hold on to mine.

Best,
Shane

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
PS4
sstacks wrote:

I have a PS3 and actually use it more for video than gaming, but I hope the PS4 will be backwards compatible for the games I do have.

Also, a big win I see in all this is like Bill said the Vita integration. I keep liking the hardware of the Vita but wondering if I should sell it, and this will probably be the factor that encourages me to hold on to mine.

Best,
Shane

Unfortunately, it will not be backwards compatible in any way. It's a completely different, incompatible architecture. The only way it will play the older stuff is by streaming and Sony has already stated that previous purchases or ownership won't carry over. It's one of the great conundrums new consoles face, i.e., offer backwards compatibility and make compromises to satisfy early adopters, or go for an optimal experience but eschew any hopes of backwards compatibility. Honestly, since the old hardware still works, I'd rather Sony go for the fresh start to offer up the best, most cost-effective hardware.

If, like they say, the Vita will be able to stream all PS4 games on day one, that would indeed be good for both platforms. Goodness knows the Vita needs every help it can get. I doubt I'll have a worse selling book than "My PlayStation Vita" when all is said and done. The handheld - even though it's actually quite nice - is just not selling. I'm hoping I don't run into a similar circumstance with the Wii U, but it's not looking good early on...

n/a
davyK
davyK's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/21/2006
It is funny that Sony didn't

It is funny that Sony didn't seek to deliberately not repeat the mistake Nintendo made when they created confusion by concentrating on the controller, making some casual observers believe that it was just a controller and not a new console.

While it is interesting that both are bringing the controller centre stage instead of specs it does seem to confuse the average consumer.

Bill Loguidice
Bill Loguidice's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/1969
Disagree
davyK wrote:

It is funny that Sony didn't seek to deliberately not repeat the mistake Nintendo made when they created confusion by concentrating on the controller, making some casual observers believe that it was just a controller and not a new console.

While it is interesting that both are bringing the controller centre stage instead of specs it does seem to confuse the average consumer.

I don't see any particular confusion here, particularly since it's not called PS3ee. I think the fact that it's Wii U and requires legacy Wii controls to function in multiplayer (not to mention the same type of sensor bar) was more of a contribution to the confusion. I don't see the same errors on the Sony side, particularly since it's a total break from the legacy stuff, much to the chagrin of a vocal minority. I also don't see the same focus on the controller. While you can do the same type of asynchronous gameplay thing with a Vita, the Vita is not the default controller.

By the way, Microsoft will apparently unveil the next Xbox in April. The relative dates of the unveilings indicate how well each company ended this generation.

n/a
davyK
davyK's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/21/2006
I guess so. I was just

I guess so. I was just referring to the fact that they've shown the controller and not the console.

Chris Kennedy
Chris Kennedy's picture
Offline
Joined: 08/31/2008
Thoughts

Excellent thoughts by all.

I am surprised Diablo III was mentioned so often in this discussion. I like the idea of it being accessible on a console. I suppose I support any new way for a game to appeal to people - be it a new feature patched into a game or the ability to play the game on a different platform. I'll go out on a limb and say that I probably play Diablo III more than most of our users (My top class - Wizard - has 267 hours invested). I wasn't surprised to see it get ported to a console, however I do not see it as a possible future platform for me to use to enjoy the game. One interesting note that I read in passing was that the version would be built upon some of the more recent enhancements they have added to the game via 1.05 & 1.07. This immediately led me to wonder whether or not your same characters can be accessed by both platforms. If the answer is that servers from Blizzard are for PC and servers from Sony are for PS3/PS4, then I guess they might as well be apples and oranges. Still - If cross platform play is possible, it would be fun if Blizzard made it a free download for those that already own the game. They pretty much base everything on your battle tag. Very interesting.

But! The primary subject is the PS4. Overall, I am impressed.

Backward Compatibility -

Backward compatibility would have been nice, but I wasn't counting on it as soon as I heard they were changing from Cell architecture to x86. I have been...amused? that so many people immediately jumped on to backward compatibility as almost that of a deal breaker. You have to figure this stems from a longstanding sense of bitterness due to how quickly PS2 b.c. on the PS3 was flushed down the toilet. It was a failed endeavor, and Sony quickly removed that extra hardware to help cut costs and focus software improvements elsewhere.

PS4 games on the Vita -

I like this. To be able to play a game on the TV, play the same game on the Vita when the TV is occupied by others, or if I simply want to relocate for gameplay sounds very appealing to me. I am really enjoying the Vita, and I look forward to the combined forces of both machines.

Social -

I don't really care about sharing what I am doing online. For me, gaming is very much a personal thing that is somewhat like reading a book. I may enjoy the occasional multiplayer, but my best gaming is done by myself and late at night - I'll admit that I enjoy the solitude. So long as these are optional features that are free to use at any point and doesn't feel like something that is forced down my throat, then it is a nice addition.

No console to show -

Ultimately unimportant at this point. As a guy that experienced a hardware failure in all consoles of the 360/PS3/Wii generation, I hope they continue to tweak PCB layout and cooling in order to get this machine running as efficiently as possible. I don't want to have to face the same problems I did in this last generation and replace broken hardware in order to continue to play games.

JRPGS -

This genre is kinda whacky right now. Square Enix came out and said that they had something to show at E3, and that was it. I would like to see more of the future of this genre moreso than I would like to see guns and explosions. Hopefully more of it will be shown leading up to release.

Sony has a lot of developers on board. I hope they are ready to stretch their wings.

n/a
RuThaN.. (not verified)
Backwards compatibility could

Backwards compatibility could be in advanced model for extra money, but i would be expensive, becuase chip used to PS3 is similar to whole box HW in WiiU, which cost 299$. Unlike chip for PS1 in PS2, Power architekturu owned by IBM is expensive as hell, because of IBM.

Diablo 3 on controller will be issue, because this is only real reason why Diablo or Wow wasnt on console on launch, i realy dont believe in good controlls conversion, it will be good enough for console players, because are accepting every akward contolls setup. I played for example Torchu light on Xbox360 and controlls experience was slow and unplesant.

clok1966
Offline
Joined: 01/21/2009
Im a bit shocked.. Sony has

Im a bit shocked.. Sony has basically said "we listened, here is what you wanted, its all here" easy to program ( and so far devs agree), more memory (the thing consoles have fought from day one).. its not going to be kinect and Wii (move).. Gaiki (or whatever that game streaming thing is).. ALL GAMES digital DL from start, better social.. BETTER 3rd party (this one can change if it don't sell).. was there anything they missed? Not really.

Now all i see it.. we didn't see the BOX.. hater going to hate.. i cant see they did anything wrong, and people are trying to find fault.

as for me.. I might say they promised the world, can they deliver (i question this) and keep a price we can pay? Sony cant do the $599 thing again in my opinion..

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.