PS4 Stream Today at 6PM Eastern
Today at 6PM Eastern, Sony will be unveiling the PlayStation 4 (or whatever they happen to call it). There have been dozens of rumors over the last two years, but here's a quick collection of what we at AtomicGamer think will be the most likely to be true and unveiled - as well as a few things that Sony will be waiting until later in the year to mention.
What will likely get shown or mentioned:
- The shape and size. We expect something that's roughly the size of the PS3 Slim (but not super-slim). We do think there will be both a Blu-Ray drive and a hard drive in it. I expect the machine will eventually be priced cheaper than the PS3 was at launch, so don't expect crazy touch-sensitive buttons or a lot of ports.
- Several first-party games. Quite a few of Sony's first party developers have been very quiet about upcoming games. In some cases, they've been working on a mystery project for years, with nothing to show as of yet. That'll very likely change. We could see new Killzone, Uncharted, inFAMOUS, Gran Turismo, and LittleBigPlanet games, or maybe new IPs from these core developers.
- x86-based CPU Architecture. It might seem like this doesn't really matter to gamers, but there's something important here: the PS3's Cell CPU architecture was difficult to program for and diverted heavily from how workflow passed through both Intel CPUs for Macs and PCs and the other CPU IBM designed for the last generation, which was the triple-core CPU in the Xbox 360. If everything's running on x86-type variants this generation - computers, the new Xbox, and the PS4 - then we could see a new era of easily-ported games.
- 1080p visuals. The rumored GPU going into both the PS4 and next Xbox are mid-to-high-end current PC video cards and I don't see them getting any further than that. While we can probably expect some sharp 1080p visuals and some cool art design by a lot of talented developers, they won't be blowing anyone's socks off from a purely technical perspective. I also don't expect them to mention anything like "60fps minimum", since plenty of genres work great at 30fps.
- The Controller. It seems likely that Sony, this time around, will be divesting themselves of wrist-waggling motion controls. They obviously lost the motion control war last generation, and this time they'd be best served sticking with what they know. Leaked photos have shown what is essentially a Dual Shock 3 with a touch panel in the center, and that seems like it'll probably become a reality.
- At least some silly talk. Sony can't really help themselves. Every time they announce a new home console, they use lofty words about imagination and bending reality. They pretend their new hardware is magic, not a machine made of what is more and more likely to be off-the-shelf parts rather than crazy new designs (like the Cell CPU kind of turned out to be).
- All the first party games. Just by virtue of some developers not being ready, I wouldn't expect to see every single studio Sony runs to have a trailer.
- A huge stable of third-party games. It's almost guaranteed that Microsoft is reserving some of these for their own next Xbox announcement, but either way, I don't expect we'll see a wealth of new game announcements from Acivision, EA, Ubisoft, Sega, Square Enix, or the like. We'll probably get a few, and we're hearing that Battlefield 4 has a pretty good chance of being one of them. Of course, that game was already announced, but first footage? Sure. Other than that, I'd say it's likely we see some kind of Japanese-developed game, but it's not a given that it has to be Square Enix.
- A proper launch lineup. We're probably going to have to wait for E3 to really get a sense of what will be coming out for PS4 from the launch date through to the end of the year.
- A price. There's been a rumor of two models, one at $429 and one at $529, but if Sony announces this now, this gives Microsoft the opportunity to beat them on price. I think that at this point, Sony will wait at least until E3 to announce the price, and they may wait even longer - like Nintendo did last year with the Wii U.