Tag Archives: Vita

Playstation 4 Announced For Holiday 2013!

We all knew next-generation video game consoles were right around the corner, and first out of the gate is Sony with the announcement of PlayStation 4 this week. At an event held in New York City on February 20th, Sony told the world their new console will be coming Holiday 2013.

sony-ps4-logo

Here are the technical specs they announced:

  • Supercharged PC Arichetecture
  • X86 CPU
  • 8 CPU Cores
  • Enhanced PC GPU
  • 8 GB Unified Memory
  • Local HDD Storage

Lead Hardware Architect, Mark Cerny said this system is, “By game creators, for game creators.”

Though they didn’t show the unit, they did show the newly redesigned DualShock controller complete with Touchpad, Share Button, Headphone Jack, and an accompanying Light Bar to identify players.

Sony’s recent purchase of Gaikai, a cloud-based streaming service, will be put to use in the PS4. There will be many features including:

  • Social integration with Facebook, Ustream where you can broadcast gameplay live
  • Screen sharing where you can take over someone else’s game to help them with difficult sections
  • Remote play of the PS4 with Vita, something introduced for PS3 but taken to the next level for PS4, possibly even working with smartphones and tablets.
  • Goal is to make every PS4 title available on the PS Vita so you can game on the go
  • Goal is to play any PS console game on the PS4 through the cloud, since they have announced there will be no backwards compatibility through discs

Sony said there will be a secondary processing chip to allow for processes to happen in the background while users are playing games. This means faster downloads, faster loading, and virtually no wait time at startup.

There will also be a completely redesigned User Interface that allow for more social integration and easier purchasing of digital items. Personally, I don’t need that much sharing while I’m gaming, but it is a great feature for those that do.

sony-playstation-4-ps4-social-ui-002

There was also a slew of software announcements including:

  • Knack from Mark Cerny
  • The Witness from Jonathan Blow (creator of Braid)
  • Diablo III from Blizzard (on PS3 and PS4)

But those were just the appetizer, there were some big 1st party reveals that look very promising.

Killzone Shadow Fall

Driveclub

inFAMOUS: Second Son

Plus, there was a new gameplay walkthrough of Ubisoft’s Watch Dogs, one of the hottest titles to come out of E3 2012.

It was also revealed that Bungie’s new game Destiny will appear on the PS4. This ViDoc has new details about the story of the game, plus some really cool visuals:

Capcom’s Yoshinori Ono took the stage to show his newest engine, Panta Rhei, in action on a game with the working title “Deep Down.”

Square Enix also showed a tech demo, but this was previously shown the year before (a few times) so not much to report there except they will be unveiling the latest game in the Final Fantasy franchise at E3 this year.

Now that you have all the information, here are my thoughts:

  1. I was disappointed we didn’t get to even see a photo of the console.
  2. Killzone Shadow Fall was the best game Sony showed at this event, but I don’t think it is big enough to sell consoles for them. I hope they announced Uncharted 4 at E3!
  3. Though the tech demo they showed with the PlayStation Move controllers was neat, Move is still a novelty item much like Microsoft’s Kinect.
  4. The new DualShock controller has a tiny touchscreen on the front, and at that size why even bother? Most smartphones have bigger screens and Nintendo’s Gamepad blows it out of the water. It seems to me they want to incorporate some of the tech they created for the Vita, but this doesn’t seem like the right way.
  5. The new UI looks like a vast improvement over the current one of PS3, but I really need a chance to play around with it before seeing all of its bells and whistles.
  6. They didn’t announced how big the drive space would be, which I’m guessing will come with the price announcement. But with all the hype around Cloud services perhaps the days of having a 500 GB hard drive are over.
  7. It is an interesting idea to make every game on PS4 available on Vita, but my first thought was, why bother? The Vita had less-than-impressive sales numbers and this just seems like a shoe-horned idea to sell more units. The Vita really needs more software that is tailored to the device, not more ports.
  8. There was no mention of PlayStation Plus service, but I’m guessing we’ll hear about that at E3. Currently Sony offers great bonuses for being a Plus member, such as free game downloads, so I am interested to see what PS4 Plus offerings are.
  9. Having Mark Cerny overseeing hardware design is a great thing for developers. With a long history in the gaming industry, Cerny knows what developers look for in hardware design and hopefully more 3rd party game publishers will give better offerings on PS4 than the PS3 had.
  10. Lastly, while this was an interesting announcement, I am still not convinced that PS4 will best the next-gen Xbox. Even if only some of the rumors are true about “Xbox 720,” I don’t see where Sony’s advantage comes except from 1st party software offerings, which aren’t much right now. That said, this is only the tip of the iceberg and there is a lot more reveals to come.

It is going to be an exciting year to be a gamer! I am really looking forward to E3 this year and I’ll be sure to put as much coverage as I can on my blog.

 

 

 

 

Assassin’s Creed III Preview

If you follow me on Twitter you probably noticed my tweets from Boston last week while I was attending the Assassin’s Creed III Preview Event. I was lucky enough to have extensive hands on time with the single-player campaign, as well as new multiplayer modes WolfPack and Domination. Plus they even had ACIII: Liberation on the Vita!

Taken from my post on the Inside Gaming Daily blog:

In a franchise that deploys yearly installments such as Assassin’s Creed, it’s important for new players to know the level of accessibility for the story. Regardless if you know of Desmond Mile’s history or not, I was assured that new players will have no problem getting to know the new protagonist.

“Conner’s story is completely self-contained with a beginning, middle, and end.”

After combing the comments on previous Machinima videos for ACIII, I noticed a theme: What is going on with Desmond? Assassin’s Creed: Revelations Creative Director Alex Amancio told us in a previous interview that ACIII would be the end of Desmond’s story line, as was set up by previous installments in the franchise. December 2012 is rapidly approaching, so I had to inquire, what is going on with Desmond and the people of the First Civilization?

“There is payoff…There are answers to be had, whether or not people will be happy with them…but there are answers.”

Well, I guess you can’t accuse of us of giving spoilers!

First debuted at San Diego Comic-Con earlier this year, ACIII multiplayer has lots of new features to offer including new modes Wolfpack and Domination. The Domination mode is exactly what you think it is, capture and defend strategic points A, B, and C. The teams are 4 versus 4 and all characters on each team are identical.

Even more interesting is Wolfpack, a new cooperative mode that has players working together against enemy AI. Your team acquires more points by striking targets simultaneously and by doing it as stealthily as possible. There are a total of 25 sequences to master, and each successful kill earns your team more time to reach the next sequence.

What I really found interesting is the new depth of customization offered, including new ranged weapons like the poison darts. You can also change the face of your character along with more options for costume upgrades. Plus you can even change your taunt and ground kill moves.

Ubisoft also increased the social interaction in multiplayer by adding a new Dare System to use with your friends. Each time you play a new mode, you’ll have a challenge to beat a friends score in a specific aspect of play. There is also the new Abstergo Ladder.

“The Abstergo Ladder is a ranking system based on your skills, this is worldwide…it is based on skills not time of play.”

Damien told us that they wanted to reward people for their skill with stealth kills and not just who has played the longest. He told me there will also be a Season Pass for DLC content but would not provide any specific details on the cost or content of the pass.

Widely considered to be one of the most exciting titles for Sony’s PlayStation Vita, ACIII: Liberation features a female protagonist named Aveline de Grandpre. I dive into her history in the interview, but I was curious on the crossover between the two titles.

“Depending on whether you have your PlayStation connected to your Vita you may have a chance to take on some his [Conner’s] weapons or play in Conner’s skin.”

This certainly is exciting news to anyone lucky enough to own both a PS3 and a PSVita. There has been a lot of chatter about the connectivity between the two devices but few games have really shown true crossover content. Perhaps ACIII will really show us what can be achieved.

“It’s much bigger than anyone is anticipating…it is the Assassin’s Creed you know and love but scaled to a portable device.”