A revamped interface, “finer-grained access to data”, and more also included.
Sony has announced that the PlayStation 5, which is indeed the official name of its next-gen console, will be releasing in Holiday 2020. Along with featuring a new solid state drive for improved loading times, it will also support hardware-based ray tracing. Lead architect Mark Cerny specifically confirmed that this was “ray-tracing acceleration in the GPU hardware”, and not a software level fix.
In a new story by Wired, it was also revealed that the console’s devkit is already in the hands of developers, along with the new DualShock controller. Games will be installed on the SSD, but the overall process will be different from the PS4. Cerny stated, “Rather than treating games like a big block of data, we’re allowing finer-grained access to the data.” The publication speculates that this could mean only installing the portions of a game you want, like multiplayer-only, or deleting the single-player portion of a game once it’s finished.
The user interface is being revamped as well, to include details on multiplayer activities that can be joined at any given time. Cerny says, “Even though it will be fairly fast to boot games, we don’t want the player to have to boot the game, see what’s up, boot the game, see what’s up. Multiplayer game servers will provide the console with the set of joinable activities in real time. Single-player games will provide information like what missions you could do and what rewards you might receive for completing them—and all of those choices will be visible in the UI. As a player you just jump right into whatever you like.”
Overall, it’s all sounding pretty good. Now we just have to wait for an official reveal of the console in the coming months. Rumours state that a PlayStation Meeting will be held in February 2020, so perhaps that’s the time. Stay tuned for more details until then.