If you were in charge of the PS4 in 2008, what would you have done? Did this for the Wii U and it was fun so now doing it for the PS4 = D. Mine is pretty detailed (been working on it for a week) but give us some of your ideas!
There would be three options I'd try for BC:
- Hardware. The Cell processor cost around $37 in 2009, so now it's probably not even half that. With an external PSU and a better cooling system it could work well. The x86 architecture is fast enough to handle the subsystems necessary to emulate the PS3 properly, due to having 512MB of the memory it needs.
- Software emulation. This one is a little more difficult because of the complex PS3 system, but if possible something similar to the Xbox 360's BC. Come out with the top PS3 games and then hopefully get 2/3rds of the PS3 games BC with the PS4 by 2015.
PS1 and PS2 games would be BC via emulation.
- Add-on module. If emulation is not possible, then there would be an add-on module similar to the Genesis' Power Based Converter an embedded Cell/RSX graphics chip that would connect to the back of the PS4 via an external PCI bus adapter so it can have access to the PS4's I/O and AV-Out subsystems. It would either attach to the back (like the Kinect) or be snapped on the top like the ugly Nyko hard drive bay, except smaller and more pleasant looking. It would cost around $70. It would be a great solution because people who really want PS3 BC would get it.
Downloaded PS3 games would be BC if you have PlayStation Plus.
PS4 hardware is great as it is, but there would be a few adjustments:
- External PSU for better cooling
- CPU/GPU clock speeds upped to 2GHz/1GHz respectively
- 2GB extra RAM for the OS
- SATA 6 Interface for the HDD for higher transfer speeds
- 500GB 7,200 RPM hard drive standard
- Improved analog sticks, triggers, more reachable Share/Option buttons, and more ergonomical
Also a strong focus on VR and making it into the next Wii or at least Kinect in terms of popularity.
Free version features:
- Basic online matchmaking via P2P
- Access to PlayStation Store and Apps
- Up to 100 friends
- Limited text messaging
- Intrusive ads (for example ad notifications while playing online)
Plus version features:
- SmartMatch matchamking via dedicated servers. Superior matchmaking, plus (optional) ability to play opponents based on locality, language, reputation, age, etc. etc.
- Ability to change username once for free ($5 after)
- Up to 12 accounts
- Unlimited friends, ability to categorize them and receive notifications
- Unlimited text messaging or voice messaging, as well as party chat
- Instant game collection (but better games!), early released demos and discounts
- Family share plan
- 10GB cloud storage
- Significantly faster downloads
- Ability to appear offline and have specific notifications
- Ad free
PlayStation Home would be retooled as a social network integral to PSN. Trophies (better synchronized) would be displayed, and you could put the ones you are most proud of in front. Also a full profile with your favorite movies/games/music, a wish list, people could comment on your profile, rate you, you can put your in-game screen shots and videos on the profile, and it will have Facebook/Twitter/YouTube integration.
First/second party software
2013 launch titles: Killzone: Shadow Fall, Knack, Driveclub (get this out ASAP), Infamous: Second Son (same)
- The Last of Us - make it PS4 exclusive. Naughty Dog always starts off with a new IP each generation and The Last of Us would be a perfect exclusive for the PS4's first year. PS2 had so many killer apps in 2001 - Gran Turismo 3, Final Fantasy X, Metal Gear Solid 2, Grand Theft Auto III, etc. etc. so the PS4 could also start off strong with The Last of Us
- Gran Turismo 6 - as well as this game. I didn't even know it came out. Had no hype on the PS3 at all and the sales are showing this.
- The Order: 1886 - support Ready at Dawn more to get it out by Q4 2014. Also make sure this game is like twice-three times as longer, and has extra modes (like The Mercenaries from Resident Evil 4, and online multiplayer)
- Titanfall - Get this before EA gets it. Microsoft regrets not publishing this game, and the reason it's so barebones is because EA was going to cancel it before Microsoft bought exclusive rights to it. If I could get this game I'd let Respawn add a single player campaign and a few more modes and release it as a tentpole holiday game. Sony needs a killer app first person shooter franchise and this would be perfect
- New IP from Sony London - Eight Days looked interesting. Something similar to that but with next gen destructibility and action sequences
- Sunset Overdrive - Let Insomniac keep the IP and publish the game but promote it more
- LittleBigPlanet 3 - just market it more
- Singstar type game - something for the non-gamers, perhaps a Singstar type game with dancing elements
- Fitness game - once again for non-gamers
- Horizon - Guerilla Games new IP. PS4 needs WRPGs badly and this would fit the bill. WRPGs are even bigger than JRPGs these days
- Bloodborne - Oh yeah!
- Jak and Daxter 4 - developed by Sanzaru Games
- Ratchet and Clank: PS4 - not a remake/remaster but a full fledged sequel
- Uncharted 4 - biggest release for Sony in 2015
- Sony Santa Monica new IP
- Social game like Fantasy Life/Animal Crossing/Tomadachi Life
- The Last Guardian - getting this out would be a priority!
Third party games
- Final Fantasy XV - was actually offered to be an exclusive for the PS4. I'd get it exclusive and help co-develop it (like rumors said) to get it out by 2015
- Metal Gear Solid V - keep this franchise exclusive to the PlayStation brand, or at least timed exclusive for a year
- Street Fighter V
- Kingdom Hearts III - moneyhat again
- A WRPG from Obsidian/Bethesda/Bioware-EA
- Level 5 game
- Folders and tags to tag games
- USB headphone support
- Multimedia (DLNA, MP3, CD, etc. etc.) support
- More apps
- Optimized OS and better organized
- PlayStation Vue a first year feature and marketed heavily
- Suspend/Resume day one feature
- Custom themes
Sorry to say but your ideas really are not good, for the simple reason that your imagined PS4 is expensive. You also come up with complicated plans as well.
1st off: You just assume the Cell cpu has become twice as cheap, it probably hasn't considering the PS3 didn't get much price cut since 2009. The basic version should cost less than 150 euro by now but it's still above 200 euros. And then again, $20 added BoM cost that's eating away from their profit is too much to please an awfully small group of people on the internet begging for BC. BC really isn't the reason people buy new consoles, and they knew they had PS Now coming. Any effort to BC is just wasted.
2nd: glad you didn't design the PS4 because you just continue to make the console more expensive.One thing I agree is that they should've clocked the cpu higher, the gpu is good as it is but it seems to be bottlenecked by the cpu.
3rd: here comes the confusing part. Who the hel in their mind would allow multiplayer in a free subscription when 95% of the people who signed up for PS+ did for multiplayer? Your plan just make it overly complicated and try to persuade people to sign up with far lesser reasons. The vast majority doesnt care about the ads or 10GB cloud storage or having unlimited friends or having 12 accounts. WTF? They care about their multiplayer. PS+ would not have 1/10th the subs it does today. What you just proposed was a really terrible idea and really one of a gamer on a forum mind rather than someone who is running a business.
4th: again, they didnt need to waste 10s of millions of dollars for a better exclusive support. 20M bought the console without the support anyway. You just put all of Sony studios effort in the 1st and 2nd years, congrats, in this age where big AAA games take +3-4 years to make, you have nothing left for 2016 and onwards. On top of that, you assume you have money left and spent that money to get 3rd party games exclusive in a period when 3rd parties where predicting the xbone to win. Back when Titanfall was being conceived EA was betting on Xbox. FFXV went multiplat for a reason, they didnt believe in the PS4, getting those titles exclusive if they were conceived today would've been far more cheaper. SFV is a recent project, Capcom saw PS4s sales, calculated they didnt need a second console for the game to reach its audience and accepted Sony's offer.
I agree with you about GT6 however, it has been worked on since GT5s release in 2010, had they continued to work on it for 2 more years and made it PS4 exclusive, it'd come out this holiday.
Wit the 1st and 2nd points Sony might've still greenlit your idea, with the 3rd and 4th points they would fire you in a week.