The next generation consoles won’t be out for another five months – but a price war is already brewing.
Sony announced a $399 price point for the PlayStation 4 at a pre-E3 press conference, $100 cheaper than Microsoft’s Xbox One.
In another shot across Microsoft’s bow, Sony Computer Entertainment America president Jack Tretton also announced that the PS4 would put no restrictions on used games, letting players play used games and loan titles to friends. Additionally, he said, the system will not require any form of always-on internet connectivity, a direct blow at Xbox One’s connection requirements.
“If you enjoy playing single player games offline, the PlayStation 4 won’t require you to check in online – and it won’t stop working if you haven’t authenticated within 24 hours,” said Tretton.
Not all the news was likely to make players applaud as loudly as those announcements garnered, though. Sony will require players to subscribe to PlayStation Plus in order to play online multiplayer.
While Microsoft stuck strictly with games at its press event Monday morning, Sony was in the mood to talk about the other entertainment aspects of the PlayStation 4.
Michael Lynton, CEO of Sony Entertainment and Sony Pictures appeared to announce plans for his divisions to provide content that is tailored specifically for the gamer audience on the console.
“Sony Pictures is hard at work on a brand new original programming plan and unique access to content that will be available exclusively on PlayStation Network and PlayStation 4,” he said. “Importantly, all new and existing programming we provide to PlayStation Network will be tailored specifically to the type of entertainment gamers want and love. … Sony Pictures will do everything in our power to drive the success of
PlayStation 4 by developing cutting edge programming.”
Lynton, however, stopped short of specifying exactly what that programming would be.
The system will also host Sony’s Video Unlimited and Music Unlimited from Day one.
On the games front, Sony had plenty of big titles to showcase. Square Enix announced plans to bring “Final Fantasy XV” and “Kingdom Hearts III” to the system, while Sony itself has 30 PS4 games in development internally, with 20 coming out in the system’s first year. 12 of those 20 will be new intellectual properties, said Shu Yoshida, head of
Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide.
One of those was the impressive looking “The Order: 1886,” an action title from
developer Ready at Dawn and Bungie’s “Destiny.” And Warner Bros. Entertainment is bringing its gaming version of the Mad Max franchise to the system, which seems to be keeping true to the gritty nature of the Mel Gibson films.