by: Fidan Mustafayeva
The PS4 has officially been announced this past week as Sony’s next generation console. From the announcement the system looks like it is full of new and exciting features such as 8GB of unified memory (the PS3 only had about half a GB split between its video and system ram) and x86 architecture which makes the PS4 very much like a PC. The system’s graphics look better than ever; they are all finely detailed and textured. The PS4 plays Blu-ray disks and DVDs along with a whole slew of other features involving smartphones and the PlayStation Vita.
All of these new features sound fantastic but a gamer still has to ask themselves if they feel that the system is really worth it. Personally, I was disappointed when I heard that the system was not going to have backwards compatibility. Not many gamers want to have an overcrowded entertainment system filled with a PS2, PS3, Vita, and a PS4. One of my favorite features of the PS2 and the early models of the PS3 was the backwards compatibility. Sony tried to compensate for this by stating that on the PS4, players would be able to buy and download older games from all systems on the PlayStation network. Although I can understand why backwards compatibility is close to impossible on the new system, due to its use of a completely different framework; it is still pretty disappointing.
During the reveal, the system was sadly not shown, so we still have no idea what it looks like. Although, we were shown the controller; it came off as too interesting. The controller while similar to its predecessors in design and shape, now features a touchpad in the center along with a brand new “share” button. This button which allows players to record or take pictures of their gaming in real time and share it online (all with the push of a single button). I found this feature to be really amazing and one that gamers will definitely enjoy. We may end up with more than a few meaningless YouTube videos but overall, this feature shows great promise.
The PS4 will come with an “Eye”, which is a newly developed camera system that may be utilized in not only gameplay but other features such a facial recognition for logging on. However, this feature came off as unnecessary and just a perfunctory add-on. If the cameras are, however, going to be involved in the PS4‘s PlayStation Move features, then they would serve a better purpose. At this time it is still unclear if the system will come with its own version of the PS Move or if the current PS Move will be compatible with the new system.
While the cost of the PS4 is still being negotiated, the price is estimated to be around $400 to $500. This price is far more economical to cost of the PS3 when it was first released, and definitely a relief. On the other hand, there were rumors that Sony was attempting to destroy their second-hand games market by tying future games to the player’s Sony Entertainment Network. This might have upsetted many gamers with used games, but that this was just a rumor.
All in all, the PlayStation 4 looks to be a promising system, but as with every system there are many desirable and undesirable features. So, when I ask myself if the system is worth it, I can only cringe in indecision. What are your thoughts on this topic? Is the PS4 worth it?
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