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Robo_1
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The worst thing about the PSP was that my battery always drained itself empty and every new game I bought required a firmware update, which in turn required a fully charged battery. I used to think there was something wrong with mine until I heard it mentioned on a podcast last week, apparently extending all the way to Go models.

They better fix that bullshit this time.

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  • 2 weeks later...

New info and footage coming out of GDC...

Uncharted

Augmented Reality

http://www.viddler.com/explore/Joystiq/videos/5339/

Hardware vid

Hardware info and more

The Hardware

After going over the hardware stats for NGP, Coomes talked about the differences between the single core PSP and the four symmetrical cores in NGP – three of which are used for applications and similar to PC.

He also compared PSP’s memory card to NGP’s, stating it has much more memory and was close in size to PS3, yet he said he could not go into specifics on it at the present. It also has more RAM than PSP, and while the battery life is important, it will not run as high or hard as PS3 in order to conserve the battery life.

To show off the programmable shaders in the hardware, Little Deviants was shown running on the handheld.

Creating games for NGP

Coomes said Sony plans to support a diverse library of titles for NGP, from “the biggest triple-A down to the minis.”

Since the handheld was designed with developers in mind, Sony is making it easy to import over existing PS3 and even Xbox 360 assets. Models, shaders, and textures have been simplified in order to tailor to the mobile experience, yet maintain architecture similar to PC and PS3.

Input Schemes

Buttons and touch screens allow for a wide range of options and allow use of the right interface for a wide range of options.

Tactile feedback in buttons is always important due to the responsiveness and preciseness games feel when using them, and since touch is intuitive, spatial and not so reactive, it was important to include buttons on NGP as well as the addition of the dual touch screens.

With buttons, a person does not have too necessarily look down at their fingers, where as with touch, they are forced to.

Coomes said during the touch portion of the talk, here, that NGP has different strength readers and can read by skin type be it course, light, or heavy.

The camera

The camera can record the player when paying a game and show the player what they did through a replay function, or the video can be shown and shared on YouTube.

NGP can even use the camera to take a picture of the player, and implement it into the game to keep track of the character’s health. Shown on screen was a fella’s general progression from normal, to a man with a black eye and band-aides on his face.

The camera can also collect texture, use feature detection, track invisible markers and use EyePet.

Augmented reality demo

Tsutomu Horikawa, director of the software solutions and development department at SOEI in Tokyo was on hand at the talk to give a demonstration of how augmented reality works with NGP.

First, he used a sock monkey, which was shown jumping around on a PS3 game box, which was also full of sock monkeys.

After this, Horikawa san showed a T-Rex render walking around on a PC screen, which was created using augmented reality. To show how this works with NGP, Horikawa got up from his chair, walked into the audience, and scanned a picture of the T-Rex lying in the aisle-way.

Then, after taking a photo of it, he showed the NGP screen to the crowd, and there was this massive T-Rex standing in the midst of all of us, baring his teeth and looking around. It was rather cool.

NGP’s camera can also detect and track heads and shoulders, which Sony said was a bit hard to accomplish because people have a tendency to move around, so continuously smooth tracking is a bit hard, and it makes it harder when there isn’t enough light in the room either.

Friends list and the announcement of Near

Announced earlier today, Near, the app for NGP that tracks where you go throughout the day, was also touched upon in the talk.

The app allows you to check out what games are being played the most in the area you are currently in, shows where you are in the world, and even what you did gaming-wise today and who is playing an NGP near you.

You can gift items, do a treasure hunt, and while this will not be available at NGP’s launch, it is coming.

Flash Memory Card info

The Sony panel at the Game Developer Conference (GDC), as expected, was dominated with more dope on the NGP - aka PSP2, the successor to the PSP portable console. Most of the information detailed there wasn't new, which we had already covered during the NGP reveal at Sony Computer event at Tokyo held in January. However new information trickled out on the new flash memory card temporarily dubbed the NVG, which replaces the unwieldy UMD format.

The NVG format will feature two storage capacities - 2GB and 4GB cards. The former will be used for small games, while the latter will service large high production value games like the NGP versions of Uncharted and Resistance, which will require the storage heft for the heavy texture assets and lavish FMV sequences. Being flash format allows the card to be rewritable, which leaves the free space to be utilised for save data, patches and downloadable content. This is smart because playing games over a different system is more seamless because you no longer have to worry about savegame migration. Sony says, about 5-10 percent of the total storage space will be reserved for this purpose.

The NVG is a smart alternative for those who prefer hard copies of games through brick-and-mortar shops. Sony has made a smart move by giving the consumer a choice between downloads and actual hard copies, while at the same time avoiding its earlier mistake of alienating the game stores. That's one less chance, and a major one considering the widespread disdain towards its UMD format, for Sony to botch up the NGP. Now let's hope the portable console is priced sensibly.

http://www.techtree.com/India/News/GDC_Sony_Details_NGPs_Flash_Memory_Card_Format/551-114675-585.html

:)

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It already happened on the original PSP ;)

Tactics II will be released simultaneously as a retail and download game. The retail version will run 5,040 yen with the download version going for 3,800 yen. Those who buy the retail version will be given a bonus soundtrack.

While Sony has been releasing day-in downloadable versions of its own games for some time now, this is a rare case of a 3rd party doing the same. PSP go releases in Japan on November 1, so this could become a more frequent occurrence.

Sounds like Sony are doing only one submission for both physical and online release. Hopefully that means that more or less every title will actually be available on PSN, and hopefully at a suitable discount. :quote:

Errr, they already said in interviews that the plan is for everything to be digital and the premium games to be retail aswell, it's only if the licensees/retailers kick-off and cry about it that that the plan would have to change.

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It already happened on the original PSP ;)

It's hardly commonplace, thats the problem. If it was the exception to not be on the store, sure. But it's the exception to be on it, not good.

Errr, they already said in interviews that the plan is for everything to be digital and the premium games to be retail aswell, it's only if the licensees/retailers kick-off and cry about it that that the plan would have to change.

Errr, thats not the problem. The problem is getting a level footing between versions, also digital won't be the primary sales front as there is no internal storage to put them on. Media will be king.

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Sony have already sacrificed one of their own to prove how serious they are about going digital, they are committed to providing gamers the choice, it's up to the consumers to make the choice, if physical sales continue to dominate and digital remains a niche, it won't be because Sony stood in the way, cock-blocking it.

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My main problem with it mostly going digital is the huge price discrepancies between a bunch of retail and download PSP titles. Even based on RRP, you can get Tekken 6 on UMD for £19.99 yet it's £31.99 on the PSN. It's getting better, especially with Sony's own stuff and the essentials range, but Namco and THQ seem to be determined to charge huge prices for their recent stuff on PSN.

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MVC reports November 11th release rumour

The handheld, formally announced at the end of January, has only been confirmed so far for a Japanese release this holiday, with a launch elsewhere unlikely according to SCEA boss Jack Tretton.

But the site reports that deadlines on development for games have now been set for before the end of the summer for a release this autumn.

If true, the release of PSP’s next-gen successor will seemingly be Sony’s first simultaneous games hardware launch worldwide.

It would also put it a week-and-a-half after the US launch of Sony’s big software bet for this year, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception for PS3.

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If true, the release of PSP’s next-gen successor will seemingly be Sony’s first simultaneous games hardware launch worldwide.

Until they delay the European release as they usually do. I'll believe it when I see it.

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Everyone assumed Japan would get the machine first, but couldn't you argue that's the territory that needs a new Sony handheld least?

The first one's still doing really well over there whilst PSP sales in the West stalled a long time ago. I'm also under the (mistaken?) impression that the "Holiday season" isn't as big a deal over there in terms of sales, whereas not contesting the 3DS' Christmas dominance in the US and Europe would be a bigger loss.

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Child-like post alert.

I’m so excited about this release, I can barely tell you. It’s the best hardware launch in years, for me – it fills a void I’ve waited all my gaming life for: a handheld that is effectively a ‘desktop’ console in your hands, with controls to match and no significant compromises. Imagine being able to play all the big releases, but without being shackled to the TV...

I’m not naive enough to think it’s that simple, mind. The PSP wasn’t far off being a PS2 in actuality, but even though you could bodge the controls to sidestep the crappy single analogue, the software took years to ‘get there’. We were meant to get platform-specific versions of Devil May Cry and Resident Evil near release, and Gran Turismo within a year or so…

But the potential is amazing, and you can put me down as a day one-er.

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Precisely. If you think of all the platform-specific stuff that sold the PS brand back in 2003-2004, we're talking DMC, GT, Tomb Raider, Wipeout... all things that were no-shows, late-shows or no-shows. I'm probably forgetting a whole heap as well.

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Precisely. If you think of all the platform-specific stuff that sold the PS brand back in 2003-2004, we're talking DMC, GT, Tomb Raider, Wipeout... all things that were no-shows, late-shows or no-shows. I'm probably forgetting a whole heap as well.

Wipeout was a launch title, in the West anyway, but otherwise, yeah. Although they did get GTA out pretty damn quick which was a massive Playstation game during the PS2 era, and a Tomb Raider come to think of it (Legend?)

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Wipeout was a launch title, in the West anyway, but otherwise, yeah. Although they did get GTA out pretty damn quick which was a massive Playstation game during the PS2 era, and a Tomb Raider come to think of it (Legend?)

My bad on the Wipeout - I thought it was aaaages (and to be fair, should have been at launch ;) )

I'll concede on GTA (although to be fair, I didn't mention it in my list anyway...) but isn't the Tomb Raider game just a cut-down port? I was talking about platform-specific developments (like Wipeout Pure/Pulse, the promised DMC and Resi titles and a host of others. They only delivered fully on that with late releases like Gran Turismo, God of War and the Motorstorm and LBP adaptations).

If you look at all the best PSP games, it's stunning how much better the platform-specific stuff is, so that's where the NGP has to shine; I don't care how important they think CoD on handheld is.

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They're the most likely to buy a new one though. Fiercely loyal to Sony.

Probably explains why the DS is the biggest selling games machine ever in Japan and Nintendo hold over 30 of the top 50 games ever sold in the country, including 9 of the top 10 slots :)

It would launch first in Japan because, apart from the odd exception, Japan gets Japanese platform holder products first, rather like expecting Microsoft to launch the NextBox in Japan first, because it's their weakest market.

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I'll concede on GTA (although to be fair, I didn't mention it in my list anyway...) but isn't the Tomb Raider game just a cut-down port?

While I never played Legend, Anniversary on PSP was identical to the home console version gameplay wise. Superb port, and one of my favourite PSP games.

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Probably explains why the DS is the biggest selling games machine ever in Japan and Nintendo hold over 30 of the top 50 games ever sold in the country, including 9 of the top 10 slots :)

It would launch first in Japan because, apart from the odd exception, Japan gets Japanese platform holder products first, rather like expecting Microsoft to launch the NextBox in Japan first, because it's their weakest market.

Eh? I said Japan was fiercely loyal to Sony, I didn't say anything about the DS or the Japanese attitude towards Nintendo. Why must every comment be misconstrued by fanboys as a slight against another manufacturer? It's so incredibly tiring.

Sony are a Japanese hardware company, their products always release in Japan first. Sometimes you'll get a worldwide release, which they usually botch spectacularly. The NGP will be more popular in Japan than anywhere else at launch, because that's always the case with Sony products. Someone said something dumb about the Japanese 'needing' the NGP the least because the original PSP sold so well, which is backwards logic.

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Why must every comment be misconstrued by fanboys as a slight against another manufacturer? It's so incredibly tiring.

You are in danger of turning into some sort of anti-scottr parody though, so I think it's fair enough people might start jumping to conclusions.

You're right that it is very tiring.

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Eh? I said Japan was fiercely loyal to Sony, I didn't say anything about the DS or the Japanese attitude towards Nintendo. Why must every comment be misconstrued by fanboys as a slight against another manufacturer? It's so incredibly tiring.

Sony are a Japanese hardware company, their products always release in Japan first. Sometimes you'll get a worldwide release, which they usually botch spectacularly. The NGP will be more popular in Japan than anywhere else at launch, because that's always the case with Sony products. Someone said something dumb about the Japanese 'needing' the NGP the least because the original PSP sold so well, which is backwards logic.

I didn't take your comment as a slight, I just thought you were wrong and proceeded to correct your POV with the facts on the ground. Sony succeeded in Japan because they managed to garner good third party support, not because the Japanese are fiercely loyal to the company as you claimed.

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I'm just repeating what I've heard many, many times before in the gaming press. Especially during the launch of the PS1, PS2, PS3 and the 360. The Japanese will buy Sony products on account of the brand, just as they will with Nintendo. Sony will have no problem flogging the PSP2 to the Japanese market. That was all I meant.

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The iSuppli teardown for the iPad2 was posted up, it costs ~$340 to manufacture, the SoC costs relatively Sweet FA, at a mere $14, it's the onboard memory and huge display that eat up nearly 2/3 of the cost, based on those sorts of figures, I could see the NGP being made for less than $300, makes for interesting guesswork on likely retail pricing and how much Sony will be happy to take one for the team for :) , unless they do a Nintendo/Apple and want a decent margin from the off.

The launch model 20/60GB PS3 were reckoned to have cost around $805/$840 to manufacture for comparison.

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