Op-ed op_130224

Published on February 24th, 2013 | by Eldon Tsan

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PS4 Reveal and Why I Remain Unimpressed

February 20 was a big day for Sony. For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about and aren’t up to date on video game related news, Sony announced the PS4 (or as people who are ABAP call it, the PSQuadruple) along with a number of launch titles like the new Killzone or Destiny. I was pretty disappointed overall with the console itself and other aspects surrounding it because I was led to believe that the hardware would be next-gen material, when in reality it feels more like current-gen but slightly dated.

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Let’s first talk about the hardware since that’s the most important aspect. While revealing the hardware, the presenter used a lot of buzzwords that really turned me off to the whole thing. Boasting technological advances in hardware such as having a “supercharged PC architecture” and an “enhanced PC GPU,” all I could think to myself was how people who don’t understand PC tech will be dazzled by these big words.

I’m just going to say this outright, the Dualshock 4 looks really poorly designed. Essentially, Sony took the Dualshock 3 and stuck a touch screen right in the middle. The only thing I can think to myself is “Why would they do this?” I honestly don’t see the point in having a touch screen because not only is it incredibly gimmicky, it isn’t even aesthetically pleasing. The select button has been replaced by a button devoted to sharing gameplay, so I’m sorry Devil May Cry fans, because it looks like taunting is gone. I like the idea of recording and taking screenshots to show my friends of the game I’m playing, but I think that having a dedicated button to do so is a bit excessive because the average person probably won’t be taking dozens of screenshots and footage of gameplay of every game they’re currently playing.

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Sony also announced a new peripheral called the Playstation 4 Eye, which is essentially a Kinect but made by Sony. Sony also has stated that they’re bringing Playstation Move to the PS4. Both of these things I could not care less for because they’re just gimmicks. I don’t know why Sony is trying to attract the waggling crowd, because that demographic would much rather play the Wii or even the Kinect, as hinted by the PS Move’s 15 million sales compared to the Wii’s nearly 100 million or even the Kinect’s 18 million.

Almost half or more of the entire conference was devoted to a large amount social media attached to the console itself, such as the ability to stream directly from your console to your friends and having friends be able to drop into your game to control your character to help you through a tough segment in the game. I like the streaming aspect, but having your friend control your character to get past a tough boss or puzzle does not sound appealing at all because the fun of games is overcoming obstacles, and this would cheapen the whole experience. Imagine how many people would need their friends just to get past the first boss of Ninja Gaiden. It sickens me.

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It was announced that players seeking to play older titles from the PS3 would have the option to do so. However, it most likely will be done through a streaming service provided by Gaikai, a cloud-based gaming service that has partnered up with Sony. My issue is that, while cloud-based gaming can provide a substitute over using a physical copy, it isn’t a preferable experience to playing a game natively due to the possibility of having latency and connection issues, and it doesn’t make sense to encounter those problems if you were playing a single-player game through the service. With no foreseeable way of verifying past purchases, it seems that Sony will once again be gouging players’ wallets for another chunk of change in order to play previously owned games, whether it be digital or physical copies.

Sony stated that there will be interplayability on games with the PS4 and Vita so that you can transfer your playthrough on the PS4 to your Vita and take it on the go, akin to how the Wii U can transfer gameplay from the television to the tablet controller. That’s cool, I guess, for Davis and the three other people in the world who own a Vita. For the rest of us, however, it still hardly justifies purchasing a Vita and is hardly groundbreaking. It’s just Sony trying to catch up to the advances made by Nintendo.

In essence, I’m not really that impressed by the console. Hell, they didn’t even show the thing at the end of the conference. I’m sure if I didn’t own a high end PC, I would be a lot more excited for it, but I understand why a console gamer would be hyped since the machine is much more powerful than current console hardware. Honestly, I’m more excited at the possibility of PC ports being higher quality since graphics won’t be held back by hardware that is almost a decade old. Don’t get me wrong: I absolutely loved watching the conference, because all of the information being revealed made me laugh. I just wish Chad Warden was there.

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55 Responses to PS4 Reveal and Why I Remain Unimpressed

  1. Lol says:

    What a douche

    • ROFL says:

      Yeah. I agree, you are a massive douche.

      The author, however, makes some good points about the PS4 that people all over the internet have been saying since the event.

    • Jose says:

      You’re absolutely right, 360 is better because it doesn’t say sony on the box; and so is pc, because that’s what you use. You know what else is a disappointment? this website because I can’t see anything on this site.

    • GG says:

      Both Ps4 and Xbox 8 run mobile version of Jaguar cores. However, Xbox 8 will have a scalable CPU/GPU module, which can be upgraded over time. Not long ago, MS has filed a new patent for modular CPU/GPU tech. Google: “Patent Xbox Customizable”

      So Xbox 8 may be launched with more than one SKU: the Basic system may only have a fixed CPU/GPU for lower MSRP, while the Pro system will come with the scalable module. This allows a future proof system while attains compatibility. Sony may or may not copy the idea.

  2. Kamille_Bidan says:

    Honetly, this is the best conference I have ever seen in my life. When was the last time you have seen a better one? I watched the PS3, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360 conference and none of them were as good as the one for the PS4.

    • Eldon Tsan says:

      Off the top of my head, a conference I enjoyed a lot better was when Hideo Kojima had to speak in front of an audience and it was totally awkward. I believe it was one of the E3 ones several years back?

      In any case, if you enjoyed the conference, more power to you. Not my place to tell you what to enjoy.

  3. jimmy says:

    Dumb article and shit website

  4. wampdog29 says:

    Sony and Gaikai didn’t simply “partner up.” Sony bought them for $380 million…

  5. Jason says:

    Excellent opinion piece. And look at all the N4Gtards cry again. Poor paupers!

  6. Bob says:

    This is a poorly written article bro. Just trying to get attention. PS4 was amazing to say the least. PS Eye will attract new customers, having a touch screen is better than not having anything at all AND if specs is subpar for you I recommend you spend thousands on a high end PC. PS4 packs a bang for the buck!

    • Eldon Tsan says:

      You are right. Consoles are much better for the average person gaming on a budget. However, as an enthusiast, spending money on a high end PC would be the better choice. After all, you’re spending so much time playing games, you might as well do it as best as you can right?

  7. meer says:

    finally some one with a brain , i got many replies and disagrees for saying tham its not amazing ..im glad im not the only one who sees it .

    great job writer !

  8. tropps says:

    So many flaws with this article…
    1) I know nothing about PC architecture and stuff so can’t really talk about that, but I do know that for what your paying for, PS4 does the job better (and longer) than what a PC for the same price could do.
    2) Don’t understand whats wrong with a touchscreen, it opens up a lot of gameplay elements (hotwheel for fallout?, scrolling in skyrim hot keys?)
    3) You assume that just because there isn’t a select button for taunting, that it can’t be moved to a different button (the touch pad is clickable). dumbass point there
    4) Kinect is the ps eyetoy but made by microsoft…
    5) agree about the gaikai thing.
    6) PS Vita connectivity will definitely improve sales and would definitely have been in the development tunnel long before they knew about what the wii u would be able to do. (it’s almost as though its the one reason they made it)
    my own opinion from here on:
    pc is antisocial, expensive hardware (my pc ,for the same price as a ps3, bought in 2011 can’t run oblvion from 2006 on low settings)
    PC is for work as well.

    • Eldon Tsan says:

      1. I can’t fully argue that point yet until I know the pricing of the PS4. However, you can build a PC with roughly similar specs to the PS4 for around 500 dollars, so if Sony prices it under 500 on release, then a PS4 would be a better deal should you be gaming on a budget.
      2. A touchscreen on the controller is a hassle, in my opinion, as your eyes should be focused on the TV screen rather than moving from TV screen to touchscreen and so on. If you like it, then hey, it works out for you.
      3. The select button for taunting was just a joke rather than a legitimate point. Sorry if you took it that way.
      4. I’m not a fan of the Kinect at all. I am merely comparing sales of the PS Move to hardware Microsoft sells that is similar.
      6. I agree that it would boost sales since Vita owners would be more inclined to purchase a PS4.

      PC hardware over the years has lowered in pricing drastically since 2011. I can guarantee you that you can put together something that can run most console ports on good settings for 300-400 dollars.

      • g4mer says:

        Its a touchpad, not a touchscreen. So, unlike the wii u, they don’t expect you to look down at the controller while playing.

    • dakan45 says:

      SEE SEE? This is the bullshit i am talkign about.

      You dont know anything about pc but you THINK it does a better job for longer time.

      Max payne 3 and call of duty on pc look alike. The console version of max payne 3 runs on low. The pc version of crysis 3 even in the lowest settings looks better than the console version.

      So your idea about “doing the job better and longer” is sticking to ancient 7 year old hardware and refuse to upgrade. Trully idiotic logic and compelty incorrect.

      “pc is antisocial, expensive hardware (my pc ,for the same price as a ps3, bought in 2011 can’t run oblvion from 2006 on low settings)
      PC is for work as well.”

      First of al “antisocial” WTF? pc has tons of groups all over the internet and mod parties. Also we are more mature than the typical console kiddos and if you payed the same price that you payed for a prs3 to get a pc. Then you are an idiot for 2 reasons

      -Pre built pcs are expensive, go to someone who can bulid pcs and tell him what you want into your pc, dont buy prebuilt expensive shit.

      -If you payed the same price you paid for the ps3, it must have been an ancient piece of shit, since you should only include the case and not the mouse keyboard and monitor. Also yeah PC IS FOR WORK TOO, ALONG WITH MODDING, BROWSING, VIDEOS MUSIC AND MORE. what can your shitty console do? NOTHING.

      If your pc couldnt run oblivion from 2006 on low settings.

      That means your pc had a 5 series videocard when in 2008 there was 9 series, in 2010 200GTX series and and in 2011 400GTX series.

      Your pc was fucking ancient and you caught up as a fool by whichever scumbag sold it to you.

      Typical console retard.

  9. DarthDiggler says:

    You can’t understate the CPU + GPU and the 8GB GDDR5 RAM. You just can’t get a PC with that architecture today.

  10. john doe says:

    Just another pist off pc gamer.

  11. Anon says:

    Pretty poor article in my opinion.
    1) The buzzwords. What do you expect from a conference reveal? It’s not only going out to you but also casuals, share holders, press etc… If you get so upset by a bit of exaggeration you must be in tears watching adverts on TV.

    2) “the Dualshock 4 looks really poorly designed”. No it doesn’t, there’s obvious improvements to the ergonomics, the concave sticks, the d-pad (it’s using one similar to the Vita’s and it’s exceptional) and the triggers. You completely ignored all of this, if you don’t like the touchpad don’t use it. Also, do you stare at your controller or something? Aesthetics is the last thing you look for in a feature of a controller.
    There’s alternatives to the select button, the touchpad is press-able, essentially giving buttons under it. We don’t know how the controller schemes will work yet so it’s kind of a null point.
    You then complain about the share button and completely ignore it’s point in quickly capturing moments in your games, the feature is limited to 15 minutes so making it as quick and simple as possible is essential. Personally i’d have absolutely no interest in this if it wasn’t for the fact that it was only a button press away as my gameplay will be as uninterrupted as possible.

    3) The having your friend drop in part was also an odd complaint. If you don’t like it, again don’t use it, it’s clearly not aimed at you and it’s not like they’re forcing you.

    4) The Vita play part was fairly ignorant. “It’s just Sony trying to catch up to the advances made by Nintendo” Advances by Nintendo? The PS3 has been doing remote play with the PSP since it’s launch.

    • Eldon Tsan says:

      Sorry you didn’t enjoy the article.

      1. I’m not upset by them using buzzwords at all. I found it very amusing, akin to watching snake oil salesmen sell their products to dirt farmers.
      2. If you’re going to be using the touchpad, you’re going to be looking at the controller, which is where the aesthetics come into play. I don’t dislike the design of the Dualshock controller in general as past versions are fine. I just don’t like the touch screen at all, which is the main issue I have with the controller. If you’re a Youtuber or someone who records gameplay footage consistently, then yes the share button will be a godsend for you. However, for the average person who doesn’t record often, it is a pointless button.
      3. You’re right. In my opinion the resources used to develop that feature would have been better off used elsewhere, which is why I don’t like it.

    • Davis Fan says:

      PS3 + PSP remote play is irrelevant. The Wii U perfected what little Sony tried to do and now Sony’s playing catch up and trying to emulate Nintendo again. Remember the Nintendo Wii and Playstation Wiimote…I mean Playstation Move? Cause I do.

  12. Yeah, right says:

    Maybe I should come up with a list as to how I was unimpressed with this garbage article.

  13. Zeraph says:

    Who are you, and why do we care about your opinion?

  14. Antiriad says:

    lol-funny article ,thought I”d have to improve my english but I realized this article is really that bad .

    Nice to see how far “journalism” went down these days-well gaming journalism was always corrupt and on the lowest level-until now !(remenber all the positiv game exclusiv reviews)

    As it is impossible to be impressed by a reveal when you are older than 10 and have seen 2 or 3 of them,
    especially when you pretend to be an expert and when you even haven”t watched the PK.
    You don”t need to be an expert to know that Consoles are just playing catch up with high end PC”s at release-this is the way it goes for 15 years and more.
    But it becomes really ridiculous to write such an article when the specs are so good that Guys like John Carmack ,Timothy Lottes and others are amazed about the ps4(you can also take a look at expert forum neogaf)-and it is very hard to please a nerd with hardware specs.This author isn”t.
    Strange.Isn”t it?

    You may ask :Why is the author writing such a onesided crap?Well usually he is paid for writing so.That”s how it works here in Germany and that”s the standard in the USA.
    I(and many others) was paid to write a very positiv article for apple to make people-and it works.
    The difference with Microsoft:They are also paying you to write bad articles to destroy the image of the competitor.
    That”s why so many negative articles and tv reports occurred after the ps4 reveal though the Media is neither interessted in consoles nor competent to rate such a reveal -especially in the USA (MS playground),and that”s why you will read many positiv comments after the xbox3 show.Well-not just positive comments.The US media will be exitied and overwhelmed to the max(by design) -welcome xbox3 hype.
    Don”t believe me?lough now, but remember what I wrote and wait for the xbox 3 reveal.
    As Nintendo Fan you don”t need to worry as MS isn”t interessted in gaming , they want the big deal,the apple tv before apple enters the show , make people buy windows phones and tablets and make them pay a monthly subscritption for the rest of their live for MS musicstream,videostream cloud etc.

    • Eldon Tsan says:

      I’m not paid by Microsoft to write this article at all. It would be nice if they did though.

      Stay tuned for the new Xbox reveal. I’ll probably write an article about why I’m disappointed in that too.

  15. Jack V says:

    ”because I was led to believe that the hardware would be next-gen material, when in reality it feels more like current-gen but slightly dated.”

    LOL, I stopped reading there.

    Worst article ever.

  16. Slinky123456 says:

    You can’t get any computer to the specs of the PS4 right now. How is it outdated!?! In time may it may become so, but no where near at launch. Not only that the amount it would cost to upgrade your PC with 8 cores, which no one in the world has anything like that.

  17. Bob says:

    I think the author just went full retard. If the PS4 didn’t iclude these features then the author will whining that the PS4 is not innovative enugh, but if Sony includes these things then it has unnecesary crap.

    • Eldon Tsan says:

      Quite the opposite actually. I would rather a console be as minimalist as possible so we can return to the age where you just put in a game, and it takes you directly to the game rather than a home screen.

      • FamilyGuy says:

        That’s EXACTLY what the PS4 aims to do -_-

        I thought you watched the conference? Their power button puts the PS4 in an extremely low-power mode so that whatever game you’re playing basically pauses rather than having to fully shut down the system. You can even go out to the Home screen and do other stuff then resume the game exactly where you left off at any time. No game intro scenes, just pure game play. In addition to that they made games playable WHILE they’re downloading, background updating, automatic updating in the background (even while the system is off) AND the ram helps with cutting down load times in games as well as background loading so you’re never waiting.

        This all was a MAJOR potion of what the PS4 can do.

        Also, your vita comment and touch pad comments were ignorant.

        The PS3 had remote-play with the PSP before Wii-U was ever thought of. The technology is completely different anyway. Remote play lets you play anywhere in the world as long as you’ve got wifi. You’re a pc guy, you should know about remote access. All the Wii-U does is allow you to play on the screen while in the range of the system locally.

        As far as you “looking down at the touch pad” comment. It’s NOT a screen, you don’t need to look down at it for any reason. Do you look down at the touch pad that controls a mouse cursor on a laptop? No.

        I respect opinion pieces but there are far too many flaws in this one.

        Last thing: You really should consider changing the font size on this website. It’s extremely small and hard to read for people on screens smaller than 32 inches.

  18. Seriously? says:

    Why did the author even include that photograph? His face is so hurt. Honestly, as if the opinion weren’t already invalid enough, we have to see the weasel that barked it out? Ugh.

  19. Stefo says:

    Good article addressing some of the key aspects and question marks around the PS4, Its disappointing to see the ps4 as building upon whats already out there and enhancing it rather then creating a revolution within the industry, its a safe bet from Sony in my opinion, that doesn’t involve the same sort of risk Nintendo took on the Wii to capture market share and enhance the game industry.

    As a ps3 owner, a ps2 owner and a ps1 owner, iam not excited about buying yet again another console that just enhances games, I was hoping that a revolution would occur within Sony to add something new and unique to the industry to make me say hey i bought another sony console because no one else has this or does this like sony does.
    For those who haven’t checked it out please check out the ‘Oculus Rift’ now thats a revolution and a system that if perfected will revolutionize an industry and if it falls on its arse full points for doing something different.
    Still my gut thoughts are that it is a safe bet from Sony with the ps4….

  20. Unicronic says:

    Some poorly researched points throughout this article. Consoles have always been about the elegance of the experience and value of money. In these two areas they destroy PCs.

    The Dualshock 4, you commentary on the new controller being poorly designed has no real analysis behind it. Firstly it is a touchpad NOT a touchscreen. Secondly a major refinement is the rubberized grips and concave analog sticks which should provide a refined experience.

    You haven’t done your due diligence on many many areas in this article. Gaikai and Sony haven’t partnered up, Sony bought Gaikai last year.

    At least do some research before you present an incoherent argument.

  21. Mac says:

    Finally someone else who thinks the dualshock4 is ugly! Imo it reminds me of the knockoff dualshock 2 that i had to use whenever I wanted to play at a friends house.

  22. Malakie says:

    This was Sony’s best press conference in years. They focused on what the core gamers are looking for games! The new controller looks beautiful and added everything gamers wanted; headphone jack, improved grip, sticks, d-pad, and triggers. (Aside from the share and options buttons [seriously bring back start and select])
    In fact the only thing that most people I’ve talked to were disappointed in, was in regard’s to 3 games:
    Agent
    Final Fantasy Versus XIII
    The Last Guardian

  23. Plantonic says:

    This was literally Sonys best conference of the past decade, they focused on exactly what I was hoping they would; the game pad and the games. This seems like a console geared for gamers and I will buy it day 1

  24. ESCOPAB says:

    I do not share many of your opinions.

    I will concede that the PS4 as presented is by no means comparable to present day exotic custom enthusiast hardware. Computers have and will continue to set the curve when the question of computational and graphical superiority is raised…but that is a given.

    I will agree that the social aspects and motion features are wholly unnecessary, but these things are not going away.

    So what is there to be excited about? There appears to be a marked improvement in graphics and fidelity. Animations and transitions are more fluid. Lighting and particle effects are closer to what we see on PC. It looks better than what we see today on current gen hardware. And isn’t that what we should expect from next gen consoles?

    Your stance appears rooted in the argument that the PS4′s very apparent secifications advancements over its fore bearer are null because they are not as good as your high end rig. A bit cynical, but ultimately it is your opinion. As a console gamer I see the value in what Sony has done. It will be far more affordable to obtain and maintain than what you purport to own. As a gamer you should be ecstatic for this nex generation.

  25. Manoj says:

    This article has so many fail statements without a base. The author included one statement about Wii U pad and had nothing to say against it but DS4 controller’s a gimmick how-so-ever. And comparing PS4 eye to Kinect, even before it’s actual function is revealed makes this article an EPIC fail.

  26. AncientGamer says:

    It’s a touchpad on DS4 and not the touch screen gimmick of Wii U… author clearly has no idea of what he writes…probably dozed off during conference and writing bullcrap later to get hits.

  27. Massacred says:

    1. As for hardware, I strongly suggest you read this article on the matter, it sums up any point I could make far better than I could possibly. (http://www.bradfordtaylor.com/insert-blank-press-start/ps4-vs-the-great-discord/)

    2. As for the DualShock 4′s design, there are many more improvements aside from the touch pad; the pad has been enlarged and given a more curvy look, feel and style, the sticks are now indented, the D-pad has been streamlined for fighting games, re-hall of the L1 L2 R1 and R2 buttons, a speaker has been added on the controller, move capabilities, headphone jack at the bottom.

    3. Gaikia was purchased by Sony, they did not merge.

    4. I do agree with however on start and select buttons being removed. Hopefully Sony will change the final design to discard the options button and bring back start and select.

    5. While we still don’t really know the full capabilities of the touch pad I could see it being used for some interesting ideas. Imagine browsing the web on your PS4 and using the touch pad much like a track pad on a laptop. Also for games like Fallout or Oblivion it could be used for the selection wheel.

    6. Saying you wont use the share button is sort of a moot point as essentially entirely optional. There is no requirement to use it to play games.

    7. PS eye and PS move are also optional. I too have no interest in them, but Sony really did not focus on them. Both were touch upon adequately for the presentation to let people know who did have interested in them, hey we still have your back. (Note: While 15 million in sales pales in comparison to the Wii’s 100 million its still hard to call the move a failure so logically they would want to keep supporting it)

    8. Once again, I must re-iterate the point that the user must hand over control to player in order for them to take over. But more over let me ask you something; why is the knowledge that you beat the game your self with out help from others not adequate enough? Why must you be opposed to this idea, why it is entirely optional.

    9. I too am slightly miffed about the backwards compatibility issues. However Sony has recently stated that they are “looking into PSN games transferring to your new console” and “other forms of backwards compatibility” but have nothing to announce at the time being. With that being said, I would not write off other forms of backward compatibility for the PS4, particularly hardware emulation. (with the PS4′s 8 gigs of hard ram, emulation of the PS1 and PS2 should not be a problem; the PS3 may be more difficult due to its unique cell structure) [Note: going digital only isn't really an a feasible option for everyone anyway because as of 2012; only 8/100 people have a stable internet connection and only 4/100 have the bandwidth to do so.]

    10. Announcing this compatibility for the Vita will undoubtedly help the dwindling sales. This should be viewed as nothing but a very smart move by Sony.

    11. Sufficient to say for me the best reasons to by a PS4 are: Final Fantasy Versus XIII, Agent and The Last Guardian. (Oh and I’ll probably pick up the new Killzone, Infamous, the Witness, Destiny and playing Diablo 3 without and online connection and with friends seems cool too.)

    Now that is not to say I am not also equally excited for new PC gaming. There are many exclusives that can only be found on this platform and I’ll be damned if anything looks better than the Crysis series on it.

    So really, I’m left wondering why you wrote this article. Clearly, the PC can be a powerful machine when built correctly to play games on higher settings. But more commonly people neither have the patience or interest in building this, which is why they buy a console. Both appeal to diffrent audiences, but as a Gamer I enjoy both.

    So I must ask, why is it that you wrote this article? It seems to want to do nothing more than dampen other people’s enthusiasm. I can understand if you are not enthusiastic about it, but why attempt to detract from others enjoyment? Better yet, why not enjoy both for their strengths?

    As I know I will be this coming winter

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