What you need to know: The Playstation Feb 20 Announcement

The Sony Computer Entertainment 2013 Meeting is over. As was expected, the Playstation 4 was announced. We have the list of things you need to know, and what we think about it.

PS4controller

Here are the bullet points:

  • Mark Surrey, of Crash Bandicoot development fame, is the system architect for the Playstation 4.
  • The console will have a more PC Focused architecture. Some details include:
    X86 CPU, 8GB of Ram, and an integrated hard drive of an as yet unspecified capacity. The PS4 was shown running Unreal 4.
  • The controller features: Front mounted small touch pad, a “share” button, headphone jack, and a light bar to indicate players. A stereo camera , similar in appearance to the Wii sensor bar, will interface with the controller to sense depth.
  • The Playstation 4 will have a stand by mode, similar to the Vita, that will allow a low-power sleep mode so that gameplay can be resumed at any time.
  • Background downloads will have increased functionality, which is an improvement over the slow downloads that often are paused by gameplay on the Playstation 3.
  • The PS3 will have on the fly, TiVo style video/image capture and uploading. You can browse friend’s gameplay sessions, as well as take control of their game or insert items to help them out.
  • Apps on the Playstation Vita and on mobile devices will interface with the Playstation 4 and the digital storefront therein, but no further details were given.
  • A bit of user-information gathering can cue background downloads of stuff you might like. This seems similar to the current limited functionality of Playstation Plus on the Playstation 3.
  • Timed demos of the full versions of games will be available. This sounded similar to the current service for full game trials on Playstation Plus.
  • Remote play will return to PS4, but there’s no telling how well it work, as it didn’t work well with the Playstation Vita or the Playstation Portable
  • All previous video streaming services, such as Netflix and Hulu, look like they’ll come back.
  • Sony hinted at some sort of cloud technology workaround to make previous Playstation titles backwards compatible on the PS4 and “other devices.”
  • The Playstation Move will return. Media Molecule, developers of LittleBigPlanet, demoed it being used as a creation tool for detailed models and animating them.
  • Final Fantasy series director, Shinji Hashimoto, teased some sort of impending announcement for E3 2013.
  • Chris Metzen from Blizzard Entertainment came on stage. Blizzard and Playstation will be coming together in a “strategic partnership,” which amounts to Diablo 3 being announced for Playstation 3 and Playstation 4.

Games that were shown include:

  • Killzone: Shadowfall – In what looks like a prequel to recent Killzone games, brightly colored and well-lit cities were being beset by evil Helghast. Weapons transform, going from precision sniper rifles to heavy machine guns. In typical developer Guerilla games fashion, there were quite a few contextual knife kills.
  • Knack – Being headed by Mark Surrey of Crash Bandicoot, it’s a character action-adventure game featuring a particle effect-rich dude, Knack. We saw him drawing other objects towards and onto him in order to change his form in a world war against armies of goblins
    Knack
    .
  • Drive Club – A licensed car racing game from the Motorstorm studio, Evolution Studios. It will interface with some kind of mobile app in an as of yet unspecified way.
  • Second Son – A game being developed by iNfamous developer, Sucker Punch. It’s a super hero game set in a near-future police state.
  • The Witness- Jonathan Blow, of Braid fame, showed his new game. Exclusive to Playstation 4, it will be an open world puzzle game that Blow says has 25 hours of unique puzzles.
  • Deep Down (working title) – Set in the Dragon’s Dogma universe, this game looks to be a visually impressive medieval dungeon crawler.
  • Watch Dogs: More of the open world was shown. The protagonist wandered through the streets of what looked like a futuristic Brooklyn, able to use his phone to control trains, hack ATMs, and spy on civilians.
  • Destiny - Bungie’s next sci-fi shooter had more of its in-engine footage shown. Large cityscapes and some basic combat was seen. Bungie execs announced that there would be exclusive content fort the Playstation 3 and Playstation 4.

Update: According to an article by Destructoid’s Jim Sterling, the Playstation 4 will not, as of yet, allow for purchases on the Playstation 3′s online store to carry over. That doesn’t bode well if it ends up being true later this year when the Playstation 4 is bound to launch.

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Author: Kyle Baron View all posts by
It all started with a 30+ page FAQ on Mechassault back on his high-school lunch breaks. Since then, Kyle has graduated from the award winning journalism program at Humber College and has written for and managed several game editorial/news publications.
  • DoubleM

    The x86 thing is huge, console development is slowly shifting closer to what its like on the PC. Which can mean an easier time for developers to port games from PS4 to PC or vice versa, as well as in the future making emulation of PS4 games on a PC easier, but we will have to wait on that.

    I seriously laughed when I heard about Diablo3 on the PS4. The other games shown looked nice, the power of the PS4 to render faces with so much detail was impressive, impressive was the detail in models, not so much in the backgrounds or environments.