The PS4 is a system that is quite easy to begin working on but developers won’t harness it’s full power until 3 or 4 years down the line. In a interview with Polygon, Mark Cerny had this to say:
“We set our target at 10 times the PlayStation 3’s performance, because that’s what we felt we needed to achieve in order to differentiate the titles When I did pitches to developers about the hardware, I talked about what I call the Akihabara test. Akihabara is an electronics district in Tokyo, it’s just full of stores where you can buy just about anything you plug into a wall socket. I knew that at some point, there’d be out on the sidewalk a PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4, and they might even be showing the same game, and the PlayStation 4 had to be powerful enough that when people walked by, they had to look at the PlayStation 4 and say, ‘Wow, I have to have that.’ I believe we are at that level of performance. I mean, the million pre-orders we have is, I think, speaking to that.”
“It’s a supercharged PC architecture, so you can use it as if it were a PC with unified memory. Much of what we’re seeing with the launch titles is that usage; it’s very, very quick to get up to speed if that’s how you use it. But at the same time, then you’re not taking advantage of all the customization that we did in the GPU. I think that really will play into the graphical quality and the level of interaction in the worlds in, say, year three or year four of the console.”
This shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone, as this is something quite prevalent in the industry. Each new console launch sees a slew of games that don’t quite push the hardware to it’s limit. We, after all, had only seen games such as Uncharted 2 and God of War 4 years after the PS3’s launch.
Mark Cerny is the lead architect behind the PS4, Sony’s new console which is set to launch this November 15.