What To Expect At This Week’s PlayStation Event

We don’t know a whole lot about the event besides the fact that Sony sent out an invite to press with the tagline “Join us as we share details about the PlayStation business.” It’ll be held at the same venue that saw the PlayStation 4 released more than 3 years ago. Overnight, PlayStation Korea sent out an invite stating that a new PS4 would be revealed alongside price and release details.

You can find out when and where to watch the PlayStation meeting in Australian local times HERE.[divider] [/divider]

PS4-SlimIt’s all but confirmed that we’ll see the reveal of the PlayStation 4 Slim and every little detail that there is to know about the console. These are already in distribution centres across Europe and the UAE so there’s absolutely zero doubt that the Slim will be revealed and released sometime in the next two weeks.

We know that the console sizes up at 264 x 39 x 288mm which is significantly smaller than the currently PS4 which sits at 275 x 53 x 305mm. We also know that the console drops Optical Audio Out which some people will have an issue with, but I don’t think the demographic will have an issue.

There’s still some speculation about the price. The US RRP for the PS4 500gb model is currently still set at $349 USD. I’d suggest that this will hit somewhere between $199-299 USD. $199 USD would be absolutely insane considering the Xbox One S is currently retailing at $299 USD. I’d suggest that it’ll end up somewhere between $249-$279 USD which is more reasonable. The Xbox One S is a much more compelling purchase due to its 4K and HDR capability, so the PS4 Slim will need to be at a more appealing price point.[divider] [/divider]

PS4-NEOI’d say that the main reason for this event is to finally reveal the PlayStation 4.5 which has been codenamed NEO. I really do think they’ll announce a release date, which I think will either be sometime between October-December of this year or potentially Q1 of next year if they’ve had to change specs to better rival the Project Scorpio. I don’t think they’d hold this event to reveal the console without confirmed details. Their TGS press conference is less than a week after this event, and they’ve not been shy about revealing consoles at TGS before. As I’ve said before, it makes a lot more sense for Sony to fully reveal the new PS4 Slim and the PS4 Neo together. It simplifies their holiday message tremendously. 

Andrew House has already confirmed to the WSJ that Sony is releasing a higher specced PS4. He has already confirmed that every game that runs on NEO will run on the PS4 and that it will debut at a higher price point than the PS4’s current price.

“It is intended to sit alongside and complement the standard PS4,” he said. “We will be selling both [versions] through the life cycle. We want to ensure we have a full range of the best experiences on the new system that we can showcase in their entirety. All games will support the standard PS4 and we anticipate all or a very large majority of games will also support the high-end PS4.” Said House.

When it comes to price point, I think that it’ll be probably debut at the same price as the original PS4, which is $399 USD. I’m not a technical genius, so I don’t know how much components cost, but I don’t know if Sony can justify it being on the market for too much more than this.

I do believe Sony when they say that every game playable on the PS4 Neo will be playable on the PS4. It’s well documented that the PS4 Neo is a half-step where Project Scorpio is much more advanced technically. The PS4 Neo is more about Sony providing a much needed technical boost for software, where Project Scorpio is Microsoft trying to own the future of the hardware market.[divider] [/divider]

PLAYSTATION-VRI do think that we’ll hear a bit on PlayStation VR, but I think from a software perspective, Sony might use TGS to show off more of the software side of things. Sony had been incredibly quiet on the future of PlayStation Move. We knew that you needed them for the core PlayStation VR experience, but they hadn’t really announced anything about availability until we broke this story last week. 

I still think that there’s a little bit more to this story than has yet to be revealed. I was honestly expecting a completely upgraded PlayStation Move, as it seems silly to produce the exact same produce many years later.

At some point over the next two weeks (Whether it’s at this event or TGS), Sony will 100% confirm the launch lineup of PlayStation VR complete with sizzle reel. We pretty much know the big hitters of the lineup, but new smaller games are still being confirmed for launch in trickles.[divider] [/divider]

SOFTWAREFrom a software point of view, I don’t expect there to be a whole lot at this event. Potentially one larger game that’s already been announced to show off how the PlayStation 4 NEO runs? Once again, this is a double-edged sword. You need to show off the PS4 Neo’s technical capability just enough to sell the console, without upsetting the 40 million people who purchased the original PS4.

If Sony really wanted to cause ripples in the gaming industry, they could potentially tease something like The Last Of Us 2. There has also been rumours swirling that Sony were supposed to show Red Dead Redemption 2 at E3 before the trailer was pulled due to sensitive gun-violence issues that happened around that time. Once again, I’d probably save this for something like PlayStation Experience in December, and really make this event about effectively communicating the new PlayStation lineup.[divider] [/divider]

Dualshock-4Another one that is all but confirmed at this point. The DualShock 4 that is included with the PS4 Slim is quite different. It will be able to connect via USB cord which will improve latency. It will also have an opening in the touchpad that basically allows the lightbar to shine through the touch pad as well as on the back. This is said to improve visibility for the PlayStation Camera.

I’m also hoping that they’ve made the controller more durable. Anybody who has owned a PS4 since launch would have gone through multiple DualShock 4s. The thumbsticks come off incredibly easily which makes for an unpleasent experience.[divider] [/divider]

PORTABLE-CONSOLEThere were some reports last month that Sony could potentially be working on a new portable console. Due to the fact that they had made some FCC filings of wireless chips that they had previously used in their Vita line. I personally don’t see this happening, at this event at least. There aren’t a whole lot of reasons to take up time at this event with a new portable console. They could potentially announce a new Vita iteration at TGS, as the Vita still has some life in Japan, but I’d say that it’s a long shot. Sony is having enough sucess with the PS4, and VR is already tracking to do well based on pre-order numbers. The only reason I see this as a possibility is if it has some direct link with the PS4 Neo, whether this be the ability to play PS4 games away from your console. (something beyond Remote Play).