For the first time, Sony has offered specific details about what will be (and will not be) itsnew console, which is not confirmed to be called PlayStation 5. In an exclusive interview to Wired, Mark Cerny he takes over the role he has already played with Playstation 4, not only as the chief architect of the machine but as the technological evangelist of the same. From this first contact, we can get several key details: will not leave in 2019 under no circumstances, will retrocompatible with PS4, it will have a physical format reader for games and a customized storage system SSD to attack the current load times.
AMD processor and graphics
The interview begins talking about the heart of the machine that still has no official name, nobody calls it in public "PlayStation 5" but nobody imagines that it could have another name. The generation step requires an improvement in the basic elements: CPU, GPU and memory. The central processor will be based on the third generation of AMD Ryzen, with 8 cores in a Zen 2 microarchitecture of 7nm.
The graphic processor is a personalized version of the Navi family, mentioning the possibility of support for ray tracing, one of the old dreams of the video game for its ability to visibly improve the visual realism of environments and effects. It is an extremely expensive technique to execute in real time, so you always have to take these types of statements with a healthy skepticism – although Cerny has earned a reputation for not inflating his statements. He even comments on other applications for this technique, such as improving the way in which sound in a video game travels through the environment, which would have interesting applications in stealth games.
Compatible with PSVR
Cerny speaks also talks about an extra power for the machine in question of sound, with three-dimensional audio capabilities that will be able to be appreciated from a normal television – although it will be with headphones as it is enjoyed in all its splendor-. One of the details that did not like PS4 was the little evolution of the audio offered by the console, so the incorporation of this technology is a detail that was clear.
There is, of course, an annexed aspect that touches the interview: virtual reality. The company is not going to talk yet about its future plans on this technology, but Cerny leaves some pearls: "it is important for the future of Sony" and "The new machine is compatible with the current glasses", useful details for those who bet on this technology. If there will be a new generation of glasses, it is still unknown.
Faster loading times
Much of the interview is devoted to what the engineer defines as one of the most important steps that will be taken: a custom storage system based on SSD but with extra layers in the transmission speed and bandwidth. The internal storage of the current consoles is largely responsible for the load times that are still suffered, but also limits aspects such as the fluidity of the camera or the ability of the games to "draw" and present the world on screen .
In the interview he illustrates all this with a demonstration using Spider-man, a game in which Cerny had direct participation, using various tricks to show the great difference that can be achieved between what a PS4 Pro can do and what it already does. prototype "slow" of the new machine. Some small select studios are already working with her, and the distribution of development kits has only begun to accelerate in recent weeks. What it can offer at a technical level is still something that developers around the world are discovering on the fly.
Retrocompatible: PS4 games will work
Among the relevant details mentioned in the interview, perhaps one of the most interesting is the confirmation that it will be retrocompatible with PS4. This allows us to glimpse a step of smooth generation, with games available in both formats – before the question of a specific game, Death Stranding, only ensures that it will be released on PS4, but there is no denying that there are transgenerationality plans with him-. With the confirmation that there will be a physical format – which was not in doubt – one can speculate that the next step of Playstation is recognizable to the traditional user of video games.
There are many details to discover and there are no indications about the deadlines that the company handles regarding the presentation of the new machine, having discarded the most obvious option of the next E3, but we already know that it is underway and that it will not be long in coming. The first steps of the new generation have already begun.