Weekend Short-Takes: 8/2/13

PS4 devs can only use 4.5GB of system's 8GB RAM

Alex Miller:
This is interesting as many have pointed to the only significant hardware difference between the new consoles being their ram (the Xbox One uses DDR3 while the PS4 uses newer, faster DDR5), a distinction that was not in Microsoft’s favor. However, if this is true it will be interesting to see if this leads to additional content/ features in game for the Xbox One. To put this in perspective, the difference between what the Xbox One allegedly withholds and what the PS4 reserves according to this report is the same amount as both the Xbox 360 and PS3 had at all. something else that I am wondering about is what exactly Sony is reserving this ram for. Microsoft obviously needs ram to run their three OS in one scheme and the constant app switching/pinning that they advertise, but Sony has been very clear in saying that they are the gaming console and don't need these other distractions. If that is the case why would they need to reserve more?

Max Gruber:
I know that these are just rumors and reports, but if these turn out to be true, then the PS4 will have less RAM to use for the games than the Xbox One will have (the Xbox One will utilize 5GB of RAM for games). But, then again, if they give the PS4 the new disk format mentioned below, Sony could very well be ahead of the curve once more, since Sony owns the rights to Blu-Ray, which gives them a tremendous advantage when developing the console.

playstation.com

Sony and Panasonic Developing 300GB Successor to Blu-Ray

Max Gruber:
For those that do not know, Blu-Ray discs can hold 25GBs of data per layer, with a maximum of quadruple layered discs containing 128GBs of usable data. Right now, they’re potentially doubling, or even tripling the amount of data that Blu-Ray discs can hold. If this is applied to the PS4 or the next-gen consoles after this upcoming generation, I can’t even begin to fathom how much content can be placed on there.

Jonathan Tung:
All I want to know is whether or not this means we’ll be able to store more games on the BD discs now, because honestly, I would love to see all three Mass Effect games on a single BD. Either that, or more TV shows to watch without having to swap discs.

Alex Miller:
While interesting I don’t find this particularly surprising. Blu-rays are more than seven years old now and with ever increasing resolutions file sizes are bound to go up, necessitating larger storage capacity. I can’t see this being applied to the next generation because of the 2015 target date, but come next generation it will be very interesting to see what developers can do when the backyard fence is moved to the next county.

itpro.co.uk

PlayStation 4: Party Chat Will be Free to All

Alex Miller:
This is a good thing for the Playstation as party chat has been a long missing feature on the PS3. This feature has done a lot for the success and community building of Xbox Live, and as it seems Playstation is moving to copy Microsoft’s very successful model this is a natural addition. The clarification that Netflix also remains outside of the features requiring payment is also interesting, as the the fact that you have to pay to access subscription content is a major knock against the Xbox 360. Competition means nothing but good things for the consumer, and while Xbox’s dominance of the multiplayer realm has so far forced Sony to offer some really excellent deals for PS Plus subscribers, one wonders when the coin flips and Microsoft has to respond to maintain its sizeable subscriber lead.

Max Gruber:
I haven’t been on the PS3 in a long time, but I do like how there will be a party chat-like system on the PS4, and it’s better that it’s free for everyone, as opposed to the party chat on XBL, where you need a Gold subscription in order to gain access to it. But it makes you wonder if they’re starting to emulate what made the 360 so successful. They’re really banking on the components that made the 360 the dominant platform.

Phil Fish Announces Cancellation of Fez 2

Max Gruber:
I never played Fez (though I do know that Simon played it and thoroughly enjoyed it), but to hear Phil say that he “fucking hates this industry” is pretty telling of the miserable state of the industry as a whole. It speaks volumes about how the corporate types like EA and Activision are ruining the industry by pushing out content that is intended to make them as much money as possible, with little to no innovation whatsoever; and it’s even sadder that people will just eat it up so avidly without realizing that they’re putting the gaming industry in ruin one purchase at a time.

Jonathan Tung:
While most people would consider this to be a major loss, do keep in mind that Phil Fish was considered by most of the gaming community to be somewhat of a controversial figure, as some of his comments regarding Japanese games were harshly panned by most gamers. So technically, he really had it coming.

Alex Miller:
I think Jonathan calling Phil Fish “controversial” is putting it nicely. A polarizing figure, many loved his game while at the same time disliked the creator for his abrasive personality. As Cyrus Nemati of Slate.com wrote: “He'd threatened to take his toys and go home so often, it's not a tremendous surprise that he finally did”. And while part of me wonders if he didn’t know what he was getting into when he started gaining a following on the way to releasing an incredibly popular game, it is unfortunate that the personal pressure on him resulted in his unique creative vision leaving the industry. An unfortunate casualty of the internet age combined with a very vulnerable personality, where everyone could communicate with him and every obstacle or slightly negative comment was seen by him as a personal insult or attack. Hopefully he will return, as many enjoyed his first offering in the gaming world, but I don’t think he will.

gamerfuzion.com
 

Solifluktion's picture

While I think that Phil Fish overreacted by cancelling Fez 2 he still has the last laugh considering how much money Fez probably made. Still a shame though to think about a game being cancelled because of haters on the internet.

MarioDragon's picture

Phil Fish is an insane character who needs therapy. It's people like him that make me think the video game industry is like writing or painting or movies or whatever else; you have to be crazy to be successful. Jonathan Blow is almost on his level, but he knows how to hide it in vague opinions and lots of words.

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