After a late night of trying to watch the most appalling live stream ever I’ve woken up with bleary eyes and an overwhelming feeling that I stayed up till around 1:30 am to watch a bunch of gameplay trailers, and a closer look at a controller we’ve seen already..
The event last night began quite badly with half of the streams being ridiculously laggy, and half of them stopping completely. Once you’d managed to get back to watching one the quality wasn’t the best either with half of the speakers speech getting cut out due to the latency.
That aside the event was what we all expected it to be, the reveal of the PlayStation 4, but it wasn’t really a reveal, more just an official confirmation that the PlayStation 4 exists and will be coming to us “Holiday 2013”. There was no sight of the PlayStation 4, we have no idea what it looks like. They began with a few specifications – somewhat vague specifications, but again it was more of a confirmation of what we knew from the leaks and rumors.
What we know:
The PlayStation 4 is going to be more of a PC in a console shell, than previous games consoles that have their own architecture often leading to poor ports of games that look much better on a PC. The Specs that have been revealed so far (sourced via Polygon) are: an x86-64 AMD ‘Jaguar’ 8-core CPU, an AMD next-gen Radeon GPU, 8GB unified GDDR5 RAM, a “Large Storage HDD” (no size has been revealed yet), a Blu-Ray optical drive, USB 3.0, Bluetooth 2.1, Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n WiFi, HDMI, analog video, and digital optical audio inputs.
The final build of the controller was shown to us too and it did infact look much better than the leaked image we all saw earlier last week. The DualShock 4 controller is pretty much what we saw, it has the more concave analogue sticks, the touch pad, the PlayStation Move light on the back, and the share button that everyone was raving about.
The PlayStation 4 is all about being social.
Gone are the times when video gamers and gaming nerds were considered socially awkward recluses, because the PlayStation 4 has a dedicated share button giving you the ability to share your game play footage whenever and wherever you want.
One thing I got from the conference was how Sony want the new PlayStation experience to be personal to you, there was heavy use of the word personalisation but it wasn’t all talk, they demonstrated what they meant too. With the new PlayStation you have the ability to take your network wherever you want with the integration of smartphones and tablets. The new Network will also learn about you, there was mentions of personalised adverts depending on the games you’ve played and purchased, and I believe there was also mention of the console “pre/part downloading” games that it thinks you’d want to buy so when you do, its there – instantly.
PlayStation and GaiKai
The rumors were that when Sony bought GaiKai that there would be some backwards compatibilty game streaming feature, though that may still be the case, there’s way – way more. In the launch event the co-founder & CEO of GaiKai Dave Perry explained a new feature that he described as “your buddy leaning over your shoulder” (or something along those lines!). What he meant by that is that with the PlayStation 4 you have the ability to watch what your friends are playing live as they’re playing it. This gives you the ability to be a co-pilot if you will and help out your friend if they’re stuck. If your friend allows it you can also send them in-game prompts helping them out even more. There was also the mention of the ability to “take over” from your friend if they’re finding it a little too difficult. If this feature comes into play it’ll change the way video games and co-operative play work completely.
Perry also mentioned the ability to begin playing the games you buy online before they’re completely downloaded, again using the word “instantly”. This is another main focus of the PlayStation 4, to get games to gamers as quickly as possible to keep the spur of the moment urge to play video games alive without the unnecessary waiting time for the game to download.
The event also showcased how the PS Vita will come into action with the PlayStation 4, what we have is essentially the WiiU but better. Much better. “The living room is no longer the center of the PlayStation ecosystem, the gamer is,” said Sony’s president Andrew House.
The PSVita.. or PSWiiUta..
Dave Perry went on to showcase was how the Vita will become a second screen for you to play your video games on using Remote Play. “Our long term goal is to make every PS4 title playable on the Vita” Perry continued. This could be an amazing step forward in the video gaming industry, I know we have the WiiU, that’s great, but the technology in the PlayStation 4 partnered with the hand held technology in the Vita is a match made in heaven. Gone will be the days that a new Assasin’s Creed game will come out for the PlayStation and then a few weeks later a crappy port for the Vita, you’ll be able to play the PS4 AC game, on your Vita!
So as I mentioned at the beginning the main focus of the event was the games, both exclusive and not. Partly to showcase the immense processing power the PlayStation has to offer as well as tease us with some fantastic games that’ll be coming in the future.
So what did we have? First we were shown Knack, a game that resembled Little Big Planet, and revolved around a robot capable of “explosive growth”. His mission was to prevent the invasion of the goblin race that threatens the human world of which he inhabits and protecting the humans that created him.
Killzone: Shadow Fall was up next, this displayed some breathtaking graphics and showed the capabilities of the consoles rendering ability.
From here we had an indie game. Indie games and developers are something that PlayStation is keen on being behind, and working with more in the future. We were shown a new puzzle game exclusive to the PlayStation 4 called The Witness though the graphics weren’t quite Killzone standards, the concept behind the game and how it can be executed was the main focus of this demo.
Following that we had a rather lengthy speech about security cameras watching us at all times; it began to feel like a warm up to the new Watch_Dogs game, but neigh, it was a huge build up to Infamous: Second Son the graphics in this game were great, I wasn’t too sure what was happening in the clip, but it showed what the PlayStation can achieve.
We were then shown some footage of cars, it didn’t seem too special just a video of some muscle cars. Oh wait, that was actual in game footage. This is Driveclub a first person only racing game that revolves around social play and being in a club or team or squad, whatever you want to call it. Not only is it constantly cockpit view, for the first time ever in a racing game, you can walk around and LOOK at your car, and touch your car (the closest thing to touching at least).
Here’s where it gets super confusing, Blizzard enter the stage. Chris Metzen kept it short and sweet and announced Diablo 3 will be coming to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3. Hopefully with the new architecture this will be the first of many PC exclusive games will be coming to the next-gen conole.
We then saw Capcoms working title Deep Down, in the live stream I described it as DmC meets Chamelot, but in real life. The Panta Rhei engine that this game runs on is superb, there was a dragon, and a knight, and they fought, and the fire.. Wow. It was pretty immense.
Square Enix stepped up to the plate too and showed off their new graphics engine with a Final Fantasy type cutscene involving monsters, guns, and dragons. We were then given a nice little announcement and that was that Square Enix are working on a new Final Fantasy for the PlayStation 4!
Ubisoft up next with Watch_Dogs, this game can’t be explained with words, so check out the game play trailer here.
Finally Activision rolled up with Bungie developers in tow. We managed to see a few little clips of Destiny, as well as a confirmation that it’ll be available on the PlayStation 4 at launch as well as some exlcusive gameplay content for PlayStation 3 and 4. The gameplay clips were immensely disappointing though. So my excitement balloon for this game has just popped and I can carry on looking forward to Defiance.
Today saw GAME and ShopTo opening up the pre-orders for the next-gen PlayStation with ShopTo listing the overall price of the console at £399.85. A little pricer than the £300 rumor, but only time will tell.
After all of this build up we hoped for a glimpse at the next-gen console, but no – nothing. I went to bed feeling disappointed about the launch, and more excited for games like Watch_Dogs coming to the Xbox 360.
Did you watch the streams? What were your opinions? Leave a comment below!