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New PS4 dev kits reportedly shipping

Sony said to be aiming for "very affordable" hardware; announcement expected before E3

Sony's next console is beginning to take shape. According to a VG247 report, the site has confirmed with multiple sources that a new version of the dev kit for Sony's PlayStation 3 successor is now shipping to developers.

Sony reportedly gave details about the new console to an assembly of American developers in a "disclosure meeting" this week, outlining its intended capabilities for the people who will be working on it. The system--which the company is referring to only as Orbis--is said to be based on AMD's A10 accelerated processing unit CPU-GPU combo, and dev kits will sport 8GB or 16GB of RAM. Sony is reportedly aiming to make the hardware "very affordable," but still able to push 1080p, 60 frames per second games in 3D with no problems. The developers were told that each system will have a 256GB hard drive and the same array of input-output options and Blu-ray functionality as the PS3.

The system may have some noticeable differences beyond hardware, as VG247's sources said the user interface is being revamped to allow players full use of the features currently on the PS3's cross media bar from anywhere while using the Orbis. For example, players could pause a game, then jump to the PlayStation Store to purchase DLC and jump right back into the game without a hitch.

Near-final dev kits are expected to go out in January, with final versions arriving in the summer. The public unveiling of the system is reportedly planned for an event just before next year's Electronic Entertainment Expo, which runs June 11-13 in Los Angeles.

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Latest comments (20)

Pier Castonguay Programmer 4 years ago
"For example, players could pause a game, then jump to the PlayStation Store to purchase DLC and jump right back into the game without a hitch."

Yeah right, maybe the interface support it, but the game also needs to support it and reload the content.
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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 4 years ago
WIth the next round of consoles all being stock PC hardware with MS/Sony flavored online stores, Valve really is in a position for some really destructive E3 announcements in 2013.
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Paul Jace Merchandiser 4 years ago
Theu should just save this annoucement for E3 and have a follow up conference the week after to fill in all the miscellaneous details.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Paul Jace on 1st November 2012 9:50pm

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Show all comments (20)
Tom Keresztes Programmer 4 years ago
Valve really is in a position for some really destructive E3 announcements in 2013.
It was not Valve that reported a dip in sales and a loss just a few months ago.
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Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 4 years ago
It will be very interesting to see to what extent the consoles plagiarise the Apple App store in their business model.
(Or should I say plagiarise Nokia, the Ovi store was announced in August 2007? Pity they didn't software patent it.)
Microsoft, with Windows Store, seem to have got the message.
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gi biz ;,pgc.eu 4 years ago
Pretty old news today.
@Pier: if so, they will probably just add a TRC :)
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Dave Herod Senior Programmer, Codemasters4 years ago
@Bruce - Or Steam which came long before that? What exactly defines an App Store style model?
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John Bye Lead Designer, Future Games of London4 years ago
@Bruce - Every console, even Nintendo ones, have had built-in online stores for some time now. In the case of Microsoft and Sony, since before the iOS App Store launched. Xbox 360 released its first free-to-play game last month, PS3 has had F2P for over a year now. Xbox 360 has its Indie section for cheap little independently developed games, Sony has PlayStation Minis and PlayStation Mobile (with rather less success, I suspect), and Nintendo is apparently opening up to smaller developers now too.

Consoles aren't just about big expensive boxed product any more, and they haven't been for some time now. Do you actually own a current gen console?
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Keldon Alleyne Handheld Developer, Avasopht Ltd4 years ago
Bruce: Pity they didn't software patent it
Patent what? Portals existed long before the Ovi! The App store is little more than a game portal with embedded purchasing. Apple just happened to get it right at the right time.
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Peter Dwyer Games Designer/Developer 4 years ago
@Pier

Nope, this time the games you write for Playstation will be running in what is effectively a sandbox. The OS pretty much should have windows style autonomy to pause your game at will. So yes, the user will be able to jump out of your deathtrap code ;) and do what they want to do before returning.
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Craig Page El Presidente, Awesome Enterprises4 years ago
"able to push 1080p, 60 frames per second games in 3D with no problems"

That's all that really matters...
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Adam Campbell Producer, Hopster4 years ago
Until a development studio decides they want 2-4x the graphical output at 720p 30fps and no 3d.

But I guess there should be a concerted effort to make games render at least at native resolution...

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Adam Campbell on 2nd November 2012 4:40pm

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So in terms of timeline, if said rumoured PS4 dev kits come out, then it would be around another 1-2 years before they deign to announce it officially and release within say 2.5 years

SO perhaps circa end 2014- Q1 2015?
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Andy Samson QA Supervisor, Digital Media Exchange4 years ago
This console is sounding like a souped up PS3, nothing more? At this rate, this system's not coming out till at least Q1 2015. It's kind of obvious that they'll be calling their controller the Dual Shock 4, but what feature will they be adding next? Looks like SONY's eyes are glued at how the GamePad will perform in the coming months.
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Nuttachai Tipprasert Programmer 4 years ago
It will be very interesting to see to what extent the consoles plagiarise the Apple App store in their business model.
Who plagiarises who? This gen console started selling digital game since the time it launched. Xbox 360 had a smash hit game Castle Crasher since 2008. Where's the App Store at that time, huh? And if my memory serve me correctly, Apple App Store was the one who plagiarises Cydia for the app store portal business model.
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Tom Keresztes Programmer 4 years ago
Who plagiarises who?
The XBLA premiered on the original Xbox, not on the 360. But iTunes was there even before that, since 2001.
Digitial distribution was there since the 2400 baud modems (remember how wolfenstein 3d was sold?). The significant factor of the Apple AppStore is that their requirements/TRCs are a release condition, not a development one.
Try to get a devkit from Sony or Microsoft.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 4 years ago
...Not to mention the Sega Channel practically pioneering console DLC back in the early to mid 90's and Nintendo's Satteleview doing similar stuff over in Japan (with a few innovative games at that)... I'm just sayin' HISTORY matters more than hype, speculation and lack of knowledge in this era of everyone being an expert on something.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 4 years ago
Cynic Cap on... ACTIVATE!

Hmmm... they're shipping out dev kits now... so that means no decent launch RPG (again) or worse, something really basic and good looking that's tossed together to get the JRPG crowd thrilled in Japan (and here, should the console be region-free), a big name FPS with pretty graphics, maybe a racing game or three (no Gran Turismo, but a Ridge Racer and something from EA most likely), some action game sequel that will sell well because it's on the new hardware, the usual sports suspects and a bunch of interesting first party experiments that will be fun, but pretty much tech demos for better second generation games.

Still, there had better be some launch titles that use the Vita in some way or another as Sony REALLY needs to convince people that buying a Vita means they can use it for more than handheld gaming and sitting around hoping someone else is using that "near" functionality (which I call "far" because up here, I've yet to find someone with a Vita using it for gaming or anything else)

So far, it's pretty much the same thing as the last console cycle, but at least we'll probably see more PS Move games as launch titles, as Sony NEEDS to show how much better their peripheral is than Kinect when it comes to motion-based game experiences.

As usual, we shall see...
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John Bye Lead Designer, Future Games of London4 years ago
Greg - in the article it says "a new version of the dev kit for Sony's PlayStation 3 successor is now shipping to developers" (my emphasis), so presumably games are already in development using target hardware, in the same way that all the early Xbox 360 titles were developed on a Power PC until proper dev kits became available. This is normal.

Also, if Sony have any sense they'll dump Move and focus on the core gamer. If Microsoft continue throwing good money after bad on Kinect, that could play into Sony's hands, especially if Microsoft bundle Kinect with the next Xbox, which would mean either a higher price point, lower spec hardware in the core console, or taking a bigger loss on the hardware to stay competitive.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 4 years ago
@John: Oh, I know, I know - I'm just poking at the usual new console stereotype of the same old game genres with flashy new visuals.. As for Move, it works far better than Kinect does, so I say they can keep it and focus on making it better (and optional) as enough PS3 owners have the thing and it may as well be part of the next generation of Sony console hardware.

Hell, a Move-enabled Star Wars game would actually be fine and dandy on the new system, I say (optional Disney characters and all)...
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