After Microsoft announced the Xbox ONE to much criticism, the ball was in Sony’s court. Fans of console gaming slammed the Xbox ONE all over the web for its flaws like the required internet connection, the mandatory connection to the Kinect camera at all times and the fact that games could only be transfered to one user after the initial purchase which is a huge blow to the used game market.
Microsoft’s announcement of the Xbox ONE was also also heavily focused on the media aspects of the console and seemed to completely neglect gaming. It was marketed as a cable box on steroids and gamers began to wonder if the console was even designed for them.
Tonight, Sony took the stage to a pre E3 audience to show of some PlayStation 4 titles, software and, finally, the console itself. The first thing I noticed during the event was that Sony wanted its audience to know that this was a console for gamers. In complete contrast to Microsoft’s announcement, Sony focused heavily on the gaming market with a combination of social media and entertainment.
The controller hasn’t changed much physically from its predecessors and has kept its landmark design with the exception of a few upgrades. The upgraded controller now sports a headphone jack at the base of the unit and also includes a touch pad towards the top. Rather than red LED lights showing you which player you are (between 1-4), the DualShock 4 controller has a light bar that changes color to help you differentiate easily between players. Lastly, Sony has introduced a social sharing feature that can be accessed with the push of a button right on the controller. This will let your friends know what your playing and where in the game you are.
Sony is also not only promising better support for the PlayStation Vita, but the PS4 tok a page out of the Nintendo Wii U book and will be able to use the iPhone and iPad as second screens to enhance the gaming experience.
The console itself seems rather large judging by the size in contrast to the controller but it packs quite a punch. Like the PlayStation 3, the PS4 will tout a Blu Ray player which can be used for standard a 3D Blu Ray playback. The CPU is an 8 core AMD processor supported by 8GB of GDDR memory.
But more importantly, the PS4 is already starting to show of a slew of exclusive titles. In a gaming market where most game developers and publishers are creating tiles for multiple platforms, exclusive titles can be a huge selling point. Sony didn’t disappoint when the titles “Kingdom Hearts 3” and “Killzone Shadow Fall” were tossed around. Fans know hardware is only as good as the software it supports.
Now that everything is said and done and cat is out of the bag, the two most important questions begin to surface. When and how much? Sony said they wanted to keep the console under $400 and they have.
The PlayStation 4 will be launched this holiday season and cost $399. We will bring you more from E3 this week.