In response to a few recent games that appear to be lacking in the criteria. This is a short list and thoughts on some stand out game mechanics that developers seem to be ignoring and need to build upon.
Deciphering The PlayStation 4 Before February 20th – Specs, Controller, Price, and More
The day is approaching. On February 20th we will know what the PlayStation 4 looks like, has inside of it, and what we’ll use to control it.
There’s a lot more to a new console, though. We need to know the release date, the price, any bundle information, online services, operating system details, and much more.
Over the past year there has been a ton of rumors coming out of many different sources. The most recent one coming from the supposed January 2013 developer model.
Obviously the final console is going to be different from the rumor mill specs but we’ve come to a point where we can put together a fairly accurate spec sheet for Sony’s upcoming PS4.
In this article I’m going to go over what we believe to be the close-to-final PS4 specs, details about the new controller, price, release date, bundles, and the console’s features.
Let’s start with the spec sheet.
PlayStation 4 Spec Sheet
After all of the rumored specs, the following is what we believe the PS4 to contain inside of it:
- CPU: 8-core AMD processor clocked at 1.6GHz (with an overclocked speed of 2.8GHz), presumably close to the 4256 EE but a custom made chip since that is expensive.
- GPU: AMD ‘R10XX”, which can also be found on the Radeon HD 7970. Video RAM will be at least 2GB.
- GPU: Secondary “Liverpool” custom chipset to enable PS3 backwards compatibility and other video acceleration resources.
- RAM: The memory has been long rumored to be 4GB of GDDR5 RAM, however, the latest rumors for the next Xbox stat 8GBs so it is rumored that the PS4 will also contain 8GB of GDDR5 RAM. I believe that will be the case.
- HDD: 160GB or 500GB 7200 RPM SATA drive
- Optical Drive: High-Speed Blu-Ray supporting 3D and 4k Blu-Ray discs, DVDs, and CDs.
- HDMI port
- 1.0 GB/s Ethernet port
- Optical Out audio port
- WiFi a/b/g/n
- 4 USB 3.0 ports (2 on front, 2 in back)
The New PS4 Controller
It has been the news of the gaming circuit that Sony may ditch the DualShock controller format. I believe that to be half true. I think we’ll be seeing a touch screen interface on the PS4, much like the Wii U’s controller.
Basically the new PS4 controller will still be called a DualShock but will resemble a Vita very closely. Here’s what I think the controller will be like:
- Capacitive touch screen in the middle of controller.
- Two-point touch
- Either 4.3 or 5.0 inch non-HD screen
- Standard DualShock D-Pad
- Standard DualShock control buttons (triangle, x, square, and circle)
- SixAxis motion
- Proximity sensor
- Internal flash memory
First off, I don’t think rumble is leaving. The controller is going to look like a Vita screen in the middle of a wider DualShock. That being said, the controller is going to be very important in the PS4. Each controller can be paired up with a PSN (or SEN) account and use the internal memory to hold the profile, avatar, trophy info, and possibly game saves. It will either be done like that or your profile will be attached to the controller and when turned on with a system it will access the cloud to bring up your info, saves, and trophies.
This will be how the PS4 will handle multiple log-ins of profiles. You’ll need to be connected to the internet to use multiple profiles if the cloud is used instead of the controller’s internet memory storage.
The controller will also feature a proximity sensor to control the distance from the console you can be at before the internal memory stops connection and your profile disappears from the PS4.
Finally, I think you’ll be able to use the Vita as a controller in every PS4 game. The back touch panel will be used for L2/R2 and L3/R3, just like in the portable’s PS1 Classics emulation. This will be handy if you only have one PS4 controller but you own a Vita so your friend can still play with you.
I believe extra controllers like this will retail for $79.99 and come in the classic black color at launch.
PS4 Price, Release Date, and Bundles
No matter what kind of rumors come out about these devices, the one question that always comes up is “how much will it cost?”
If I go by the spec sheet and controller info I just talked about I see the PS4 retailing at $399.99 USD.
Now, I also don’t think that will be the only price point you’ll be able to buy the console at. I think there will be two bundles for the PS4 come launch time. Here’s what they will contain:
- Sony PlayStation 4 – $399.99
- 160GB PS4 console
- 1 DualShock Touch controller
- HDMI cord
- Controller charging cord
- Sony PlayStation 4 Plus – $499.99
- 500GB PS4 console
- 1 DualShock Touch controller
- HDMI cord
- Controller charging cord
- 1 month of PS Plus
Going off of these two bundles, I think you’ll have a great choice between the hundred dollars of getting the bigger hard drive and a quick trial of PS+ or just going bare bones. Either way, the 160GB and 500GB hard drive sizes are good enough for consumers. You’ll always have the choice of attaching an external hard drive (capable ofusing FAT32 and NTFS this time).
As for release date, if we’re getting this announcement on the 20th of this month then we’ll get the price and release date at E3. We’ll be seeing the PS4 hit retail shelves on October 22nd, 2013. That’s my specific guess but I really think October will be the month for the PS4, which makes Grand Theft Auto V’s September release date very close to the launch of the next gen. Rockstar may be closing out the PS3’s 2013 with a blast.
Aside from specs, price, release date, and different priced release dates the console’s main features will also be highlighted. We’ll hear about everything from multiple log-ins to social networks to app stores. Here’s the list of what I believe the PS4 will be able to do (most based off rumor, other speculation):
- SEN/PSN 2.0
- Fully integrated store, not an app like the current store but it will resemble the current one.
- Trophy sync will be instantaneous.
- Multiple profiles on one console by linked controllers (described above).
- Be able to restore purchases from PS3’s store.
- PS+ section will be more featured instead of just found in the middle of a bunch of categories.
- SEN/PSN service will remain free of charge but the PS+ price will go up to $19.99 for 3-months and $59.99 for a year.
- Instant Game Collection will return but will not feature PS4 games until the console is at least a year old.
- Full retail games available for digital download at day one (every release).
- Friends & Communication
- Cross game chat and party chat will be available from day one and be a usable feature in any game or app.
- Voice messages can be sent to friends.
- Emojis will make a debut in the chat system.
- Sony branded mini bluetooth keyboards will be sold for the PS4 and will look similar to a Microsoft Arc Keyboard.
- Sony will also sell a cheap headset that can plug into the controller’s charging port for around $19 or $29.
- Backwards Compatibility
- PS1: Fully playable from Blu-Ray drive or downloadable from SEN/PSN store.
- PS2: Classics downloadable from the SEN/PSN store.
- PS3: Fully playable from the Blu-Ray drive due to the Liverpool chip and downloadable from the SEN/PSN store.
- Other Games
- PS Minis: They will return on the PS4.
- Transfers to the PSP and Vita will be quicker.
- Sony App Store
- Full app store will allow mobile developers to port their apps and games to Sony products beginning with the PS4.
- Controller in the future will also be able to bring up the SEN/PSN account and profile on future Sony TVs, digital boxes, and other products.
- Games will be able to be played on either the PS4 or Vita.
- Gives a chance for devs such as Gameloft, Zynga, Com2US, and others to bring their games to a bigger audience.
- Other apps such as e-mail, Skype, ESPN, reddit, Kindle, eBay, Audible, Dictonary.com, and who knows else what can be ported over and used on the PS4 and Vita.
- Social Hub
- Sony will have a huge social focus on the PS4’s operating system.
- Facebook, Twitter, and other networks will be integrated and you’ll have several options available to you for sharing, usage, and other things.
- YouTube will be integrated with the PS4 and players can record, upload, or stream footage from their current game (PS4 and SEN/PSN 2.0 games only) to YouTube.
- Players can use the new PS Eye 2.0 and/or a mic to have sound and reaction footage in the videos they are recording/streaming.
- Other Features
- Audio outputs: Dolby 2.0, 5.1, and 7.1 surround sound.
- Video outputs: only HDMI, no composite or component.
- Feed loader for discs, no top loader like current PS3 model.
- There will only be one Ethernet port, not two like the dev model. The extra is only used for sharing and other dev purposes.
PS4 Launch Titles
I did a post about this a bit ago. Basically I found it easy to predict launch titles for the PS4 based on the past and how the recent Vita and Wii U launches went.
If you want to check the predicted launch titles out, follow this link. I believe there will be 15 launch titles highlighted by Uncharted 4.
So there we have it. That will be the PS4 according to all of the rumors pooled together and analyzed mixed with a bit of speculation. Honestly, if it is anything like this, the PS4 will be a beast.
We’ll all find out on February 20th. I think Sony is going to keep the games, release date, price, and bundle info for E3 but we’ll see plenty during the upcoming announcement.
I’ll be back after the conference to pick out the things that are right and wrong about this but going off of the latest and greatest rumors and mumblings, I think you can expect most of this.