PS4 first impressions: Sony’s new console is sociable about gaming

Nov. 14, 2013 | 6:30 p.m.

Sony’s PlayStation 4, which will be released Friday, is the successor to 2006’s PlayStation 3 and the first of two major video game consoles out this holiday season. Microsoft will release its Xbox One on Nov. 22.

Both consoles are technologically comparable, but each offers a diverging theory as to the future of gaming.

Sony’s point of view is apparent after spending just one hour with the PlayStation 4: Tomorrow’s gaming experience will be, above all else, a shared one.

Today’s consoles, including last year’s Wii U from Nintendo, are increasingly seeking ways to hold the attention of the player at a time when the fastest-growing area for games is the mobile phone.

REVIEW: Sony’s PS4 is communal, connected

PlayStation 4, like the Xbox One, requires an always-on Internet connection to be used to its fullest potential. Part gaming machine and part gaming broadcast device, within minutes of turning on the PlayStation 4 players are asked for a Facebook password. Default settings will inform your friends of what you are playing at every moment.

The PlayStation 4 offers social sharing options. (Sony)

The PlayStation 4 offers social sharing options. (Sony)

It aims to connect gamers with ease outside the ecosystem of the console – or turn them into marketers, depending on your level of cynicism.

Sharing is encouraged and easy. Simply press a button on the controller and one is asked to post the recorded game footage on Facebook. If you would rather be an observer than a content provider, players can exit a game and watch live streaming broadcasts of other PlayStation 4 users right from within the system’s operating system. If you’re watching footage of a game you don’t own, there is link straight to the PlayStation’s 4’s in-system download store.

MORE: Selling new consoles in a tough economic climate

Beyond the system’s sharing capabilities, the next-generation PlayStation offers requisite improvements in its overall appearance. The diagonally-shaped system, with a combo glossy/matte finish, contrasts with the more cable box-like design of the Wii U and the Xbox One. It is the most game-like-looking console on the market.

There were zero hiccups in getting the PlayStation 4 up and running within 20 minutes of unboxing and plugging in the system. Its quickness and sensitivity is readily apparent. When resetting the clock, for example, the PlayStation interface would wildly scroll through the numbers with just a slight touch of the control stick.

The PlayStation 4 will retail for $400. Out of the box, the system includes one controller, an HDMI cable, a micro-USB cable for charging the controller and a Mono-headset for voice chat.

UPDATE: Read the complete PS4 review here.

– Todd Martens | @toddmartens | @LATHeroComplex


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One Response to PS4 first impressions: Sony’s new console is sociable about gaming

  1. DannyJas says:

    Sony will always get the attention of the public in a more original way than microsoft

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