Tags: Playstation 4

If you beat the odds, No Man’s Sky will have free multiplayer

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Sony will not require players to have PlayStation Plus to play No Man’s Sky online. Game Informer reached out to Sony and the console-maker confirmed that despite requiring an active PlayStation Plus subscription to play most games online, they will not require it for No Man’s Sky. That’s a good thing because while the game has some shared universe gameplay like logging discoveries and tagging them with your name, the studio is treating the game as a single player experience. Thanks to the procedurally generated nature of the galaxy, there are 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 planets in the No Man’s Sky universe. Running into another player on accident should be a rare occurrence, but congratulations if you do! You just got free multiplayer!

No Man’s Sky will release on August 9th for the PlayStation 4 and August 12th for Windows PC.

How many games can you cram into one month of PlayStation Now?

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Subscription game streaming is coming to the PlayStation 4 on January 13th. PlayStation Now, which allows gamers to use their PlayStation 4 to stream over 100 PlayStation 3 games from Sony’s servers, is going to offer an “all-you-can-play” subscription which permits users to play as many games as they want with a valid membership. The service will cost $19.99 a month or $44.99 for three months. Current “a la carte” rental options will continue.

We know there are lots of PS4 owners that never owned a PS3, and this is a great way to catch up on games they may have missed.

A seven day free trial of the service will also be available at launch. Sony plans to eventually expand the subscription offer to other PlayStation Now enabled devices.

Project SkyLight adds razzle dazzle to the PlayStation 4

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One of the biggest letdowns of the last console generation were faceplates. These were the decorative chunks of plastic that promised to jazz up your plain old console. Instead of looking at the boring front of the machine, you could get a snazzy tribal tattoo design, a logo from your favorite AAA game franchise, or even a picture of your favorite celebrity. With tasteful stuff like this available, it’s a mystery why they went away.

Sony is bringing it back. Well, they’re at least going to try. Project SkyLight aims to add a little cosmetic flair to the PlayStation 4. It’s a “beta” program for now, so the only two designs are for Little Big Planet 3 and The Order: 1886. If enough people buy them, Sony may widen the selection. Don’t worry if you’re not smitten with the designs offered, because these “faceplates” go on the side of the console – where you won’t even see them in most cases. $24.99 to not look at these seems fair.

Sony highlights how you can dance with the PlayStation 4

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In the mood for some fancy footwork? Sony made some announcements at Gamescom that involve a fair amount of body grooving. DayZ, the infamous open-world survival-horror game that’s as much about zombies as it is dancing with no pants on, is coming to PlayStation 4. If dancing with swords is more your thing, Ninja Theory revealed Hellblade, a Heavenly Sword meets Celtic myth mash-up. Still dancing? Check out Until Dawn, a horror title that was originally made for the Move controller. (Remember those things?) It’s now been retooled for the DualShock 4. Waggle away! Hollowpoint is a four-person co-op hybrid 2D/3D shooter that requires fancy moves on the sticks to stay alive. Fans of Tearaway on the PS Vita will be jazzed to hear that Tearaway Unfolded is coming to the console cousin. Finally, Sony pointed out that console warriors have a reason to do a jig as they confirmed that they’ve sold ten million PlayStation 4 consoles to consumers worldwide. Now that’s got a beat and you can dance to it!

Sony says EA Access isn’t worth it

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Electronic Arts’ EA Access membership deal offers all-you-can-play gaming on selected titles, discounts on digital purchases, and the ability to play games a week before their official retail release. All this for an affordable $4.99 a month, or $29.99 a year! Unfortunately, only Xbox One gamers will get this opportunity. Why isn’t EA Access on Sony’s PlayStation 4? According to what Sony told Game Informer, it’s because they don’t believe the publisher-specific subscription plan offers value to their customers.

“PlayStation Plus memberships are up more than 200% since the launch of PlayStation 4, which shows that gamers are looking for memberships that offer a multitude of services, across various devices, for one low price. We don’t think asking our fans to pay an additional $5 a month for this EA-specific program represents good value to the PlayStation gamer.”

It seems that for now, PlayStation gamers won’t be getting EA Access. Beta invites to EA Access are already being offered to selected Xbox One players.

Sony considering early access program for PlayStation

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The advantages of early access for developers are obvious. Games offered through Steam’s early access program have allowed independent developers a way to finance their projects while leveraging community participation, and gives them the power to avoid contractual pitfalls that can come with publisher backing. High-profile games like DayZ, Rust, Planetary Annihilation, and Prison Architect are benefitting from early access. Larian Studios even attributes the success of their recently launched RPG Divinity: Original Sin to feedback gleaned from players during the early access period.

While PC players may have demonstrated their eagerness to purchase unfinished games, will console players do so as well? Sony is considering the question. In an interview with Gamasutra, Sony’s Adam Boyes says that figuring out how to do early access the right way is something his company is looking into.

That’s one of the massive conversations we have internally – that, at what point does [a game meet standards of release]? We still at some point ensure that we’re being mindful of the consumer. We don’t want somebody to stumble across that title and expect a full product, and have a negative experience.

Boyes admits that he played Rust and had a great time despite it being unfinished.

Diablo III on PlayStation gets a little moldy

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One of the odder announcements during Sony’s pre-E3 press briefing was that the Diablo III: Ultimate Evil Edition for PlayStation consoles would have content from Last of Us embedded in it. While Ellie and Joel may not be a good fit for Blizzard’s hack and slash loot-a-thon, the Clickers, Stalkers, and Bloaters should look right at home in the catacombs of the undead. According to Sony, the fungi-infected monsters from Last of Us will inhabit a special Nephalem Rift that features content created in partnership with Naughty Dog.

The game honors don’t stop there! Ultimate Evil Edition players on PlayStation will also get the “Guise of the Colossi.” It’s a set of transmogrification plans that will allow their characters to take on the fearsome aspect of the titular bad (good?) guy from the PlayStation 2 hit Shadow of the Colossus.

No announcements have been made regarding any special content for the Xbox One or Xbox 360 versions of the Ultimate Evil Edition.

Bloodborne might have corpse dogs, but Entwined has interspecies love

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It’s tough going last on E3 kickoff day. By the time your presentation starts everyone else has already had their briefings, so your left with a lot of covered ground. Sony gave it their best and showed some exclusives like The Order: 1886, inFamous: First Light, and Little Big Planet 3, but the most striking showing of the Sony briefing was probably a gore-filled trailer for Bloodborne, From Software’s PlayStation 4 action RPG. Early speculation about this title erupted last month when rumors began spreading that Hidetaka Miyazaki, Dark Souls original creator, was working on something named “Project Beast” which has turned out to be this game. Fans of the merciless difficulty in Dark Souls hope that Miyazaki has brought some of that sadism to Bloodborne’s gaslight setting.

Sick of blood and guts and Victorian monster-hunting? Try Entwined. A game about a bird in love with a fish.

Blame Twitch for the shortage of PlayStation 4 cameras

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Looking for a PlayStation 4 camera accessory? You’re not alone. Sony’s president of worldwide studios Shuhei Yoshida told Polygon that the console’s built-in Twitch streaming feature is the cause of the shortage. People love to use it. They broadcast themselves playing games, or they create call-in shows set in their living rooms, or they stream questionable material. Yoshida said that Sony’s marketing folks underestimated how popular streaming would be.

“They came up with the initial demand in that conventional way and it was very, very low,” he said. “Using the camera to broadcast yourself is much, much more fun they they thought and they didn’t quite get it.”

Sony said the peripheral has a 15% attach rate, putting the its total sales figure at around 900,000 units. Due to the camera’s constrained supply, many sellers have marked it up above the $59 suggested retail price.

Square Enix figures out how to add replayability to Tomb Raider

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I’ve already played Tomb Raider twice, even though it’s clearly not a game designed to be played more than once. As a once-and-done narrative-driven AAA release, it’s one of a dying breed. But since it was released on the cusp of a new generation of console systems, publisher Square Enix has tempted me with a third playthrough by showing off the tech upgrades in the “Definitive Edition” re-release for the Xbox One and Playstation 4. If you’re looking for an excuse to re-experience one of the best games of 2013, how about new tress technology? How about new mud, blood, and sweat? How about new equipment physics? How about new, uh, drip maps? Yeah, drip maps. Frankly, I don’t really need an excuse for another playthrough, but this upgrade helps.

Sony announces a way to use the future to play old games

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Since Sony’s purchase of Gaikai in June 2012, analysts have predicted that they would use the streaming service to somehow let PlayStation customers play games through the power of the cloud. Sony didn’t have much to say about it at E3 last year, other than mentioning that something was coming, but they’ve finally announced their streaming service at CES 2014. PlayStation Now will leverage the infrastructure they invested in to stream games to the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PS Vita, televisions, tablets, and smartphones. Sony will allow people to either rent games a la carte, or subscribe to the service for open-ended gaming. Beta testing will begin soon.

Sony also announced that the PlayStation 4 has sold 4.2 million units as of December 28th 2013.

Xbox One and PlayStation 4 are tied for their launch sales figures

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The PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One launch sales figures are in, and it’s a dead heat. Black Friday madness is over and the next-gen console makers are crowing over how well their products have sold.

Microsoft says the Xbox One sold through (that’s a measure of how many consumers actually bought an item versus the sales to the retail outlet) over 2 million units worldwide in the 18 days since launch. According ot their data, 1000 Xbox One’s were ordered a minute on Amazon.com during the peak.

Don’t fret Sony warriors! The PlayStation 4 sold terrifically as well. According to their numbers, the PlayStation 4 sold (no word on whether that’s sold through to customers or sold to retailers) 2.1 million units since its launch. Keep in mind that unlike the Xbox One, Sony’s newest console launched in the US and Canada first, followed by other markets after two weeks.

Pop the cork and celebrate, console fanboys! You all win! You can wrestle over Christmas numbers after the New Year.

Slouching Toward the Next Generation: and the winner is…

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My high-water mark of pure gaming joy came as a ten year old on Christmas morning unwrapping a Nintendo Entertainment System. Since then I’ve had any number of great gaming moments. So when those Amazon boxes showed up on my porch, one launch day followed by the other, I had a flashback to those gloriously lazy days of my adolescence and early adulthood, of holidays and summer vacations spent playing games all day and staying up half the night.

At the start of this new generation I wanted to try and get back to that youthful exuberance. To spend less time thinking, reading, and posting about games and more time playing them. To ignore my steam backlog for a while, consign my old consoles to the closet, stack up all those unfinished last gen titles, and jump in feet first. I was fortunate to string together a few long weekends and an extended Thanksgiving break to just sit back and play videogames as a kid would. Like I had all the time in the world.

Now, after the jump, I have an hour before bed. Which controller do I grab? Continue reading →

Zen Pinball 2 is backwards compatible on the Playstation 4

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A handful of Zen Pinball 2 tables will be available for the Playstation 4 on December 17. There are even a couple of classics alongside the usual Star Wars and Marvel stuff (should we just start calling these “Disney” tables?). Who can complain about any selection of Zen Pinball tables that includes Paranormal and Earth Defense? Not me.

However, here’s the big news for those of you who already have collections on the Playstation 3.

If you own any of these on PS3, we invite you to download them on PS4 at no charge. This is our way of saying thank you to all of the players who have supported Zen Studios on PlayStation platforms over the years.

It’s a new platform, so you won’t be able to carry over your high scores. I can’t help but feel this is almost — almost! — a good thing. Nothing kills a table for me like having a really high high score that I know I’ll never be able to beat.

Zen Studios will announce details of their collaboration with Microsoft on the Xbox One sometime early next year.

All Your Tweets Are Belong To Us: the Twitterverse declares a winner

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This post is the second is a series that examines this year’s console launches through the eyes of the Twitterverse. For more on the project, see the description in the previous post.

As of the evening of the 24th of November, I have dutifully collected 4,168,778 English language tweets about the PS4 and the Xbox One. A few minor technical glitches aside, this represents 348 consecutive hours of tweets that include words and hash tags relevant to the new consoles.

After the jump, find out whether Swedish soccer legend Zlatan Ibrahimovic and One Direction member Louis Tomlinson play the same system…

Continue reading →