It’s finally time to get excited, as Sony has officially begun discussing what to expect from the Playstation 5.
Sony and Microsoft both decided to extended the current console generation using a mid-cycle refresh, with the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 spawning mini-sequels (the Xbox One S and PS4 Pro). But now, Sony’s Mark Cerny has revealed the first details about what to expected from the highly anticipated future console.
In an interview with Wired, Cerny discussed what some of the inner workings of the console are made of and whether it’ll be backwards compatible or not. He also confirmed that the console will not be released in 2019 as some have predicted.
Cerny said that the next-gen console shouldn’t be considered a mere upgrade. It’ll contain a third-generation AMD chip, a GPU that’s a variant of Radeon’s Navi series, and it’ll also support ray tracing, a feature that’s often marketed as a valued feature on the PC platform. While ray tracing has become a staple of Hollywood visual effects and is beginning to show its face in $10,000 high-end processors, no game console has been able to manage it. Until now.
The AMD chip also includes a custom unit for 3D audio that Cerny thinks will redefine what sound can do in a video game.
“As a gamer,” he says, “it’s been a little bit of a frustration that audio did not change too much between PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4. With the next console the dream is to show how dramatically different the audio experience can be when we apply significant amounts of hardware horsepower to it.”
Cerny also confirmed that the console will come with a solid-state drive (SSD), an option which PC players have had access to for years but one that’s only been an option for console players if they purchase an external device on their own.
Cerny demonstrated that the SSD will dramatically reduce load times. Using the fast-traveling in Marvel’s Spider-Man, he loaded it on the PlayStation 4 Pro which took around 15 seconds to complete. The same action when attempted on the dev kit took 0.8 seconds.
Finally, he did offer some details on Sony’s plans for the next console’s games. It’ll be backwards compatible with the PlayStation 4’s game catalog, so everyone who buys it will still be able to play their current collection. When asked specifically about Death Stranding, a spokesperson sitting in on the interview said the game would be out for the PlayStation 4.