GameSpot's The Lobby: All the details on PlayStation NeoGiant Bomb's Jeff Gerstmann shares the details of PlayStation Neo with the crew of The Lobby at GameSpot. How does Sony keep the PlayStation family of fans together?
[MUSIC] Speaking of 4K. 4K. Jeff Gerswin. Hello. You guys did a good old scoop yesterday. Yesterday? Yesterday, Monday? Yes, yesterday. I was on the bus reading this. Austin Walker reporting on a bunch of stuff that came out. There were rumors around GDC. Yes. Yeah. There was a lot of people. There was Cas McDonald hearing people talk in line. [LAUGH] In line? Yeah. About this Playstation 4.5. The new guys got a lot more substantial information. Yeah, yeah. We ended up getting ahold of the specs for the unit, and its developer focused documentation on the Mio, which is the codename for the [CROSSTALK]. I want to meet who was coming up with Sony's codenames Project Morpheus. They have Morpheus and now Neo. **** Trinity, baby, it's on the way. At some point Orbis and all the stuff they've done back then linked up in a weird way. Now they've got this. Check out our new console, the Nebuchadnezzar. Right, yeah, totally, yes. So it's developer focused information about how the upgraded Playstation 4 code name Neo Will work and some of the timing around the wind. Third party games are expected to have the neo support built right in. Right So the specs are what they are, I'm not gonna sit here and recite numbers .> Yeah If you have them. we could talk about Jaguar cores all day long. Right, I know. You guys talk about it on the bombcast a bunch too. Yeah, but you know it's a better CPU. It's a higher clock speed for the CPU, it is a better GPU and it is a higher Frequency for the RAM. It seems like the processor is probably the most biggest upgrade in that [CROSSTALK] Yeah. That's the thing you kinda hear about being maybe a bottleneck for some of the existing Playstation 4 games, so that might be something that would see some benefit. Cool. But I'm not necessarily like Mr. Graphics, Mr. Technical. Mm-hm. So for me like looking over this stuff it seems interesting. Kinda the positioning of it and what they are and aren't allowing developers to do with the games. So there will be no Neo exclusive games. Right. It will. And the documentation straight up says that? Yeah, this will be an upgraded version of the PlayStation 4. It will play your existing games, and it will also play games that will run differently on an upgraded PS 4 as opposed to the original PS 4. But, every disk you buy We'll work it both. So developers will have to kind of come up with two versions of specs and the NEO was kind of built for 4K. At least the display resolution will have a scalar that it can output to 4K TVs. But that doesn't necessarily mean that games will run natively at, 4K because that's something that PCs have a hard time doing. Right. I mean 4K is like, it's at least four times as much as 1080. It's an incredible amount of. It's really hard. It's the sort of thing where you have like two or three graphics cards in a PC. Like when Microsoft first showed That free Forza thing running. They were like, just running a Forte and you look behind the guy giving the demo and this is this mountain piece [LAUGH] like clear case straight out a rich man's land party and yeah. It's a hard thing to do right now. It won't always be. I mean, Nvidia's getting ready to announce more stuff. Everything's always getting more powerful. But if they're saying 4K in the documentation, there must be a reason why they're saying 4K. So is that Sony being Sony and trying to, you know? Well, so everything will probably scale. I mean you know, all these consoles now have a scalar in them that will output whatever resolution you tell it to. Right. Regardless of the native resolution. So in the documents they kind of provide some potential options for developers making games and working in neo mode as opposed to base mode which is what they're referring to with the original PS4 stuff. So in neo mode, games are expected to output at 4K and render at a resolution No lower than 1080 so they're kind of saying here's some different ways to kind of achieve handling outputting to 4k while still detecting if there's not a 4k TV plugged and making sure your doing stuff at 1080 properly. And so they're kind of providing a few different options based on I assume there early work on developing games for this thing. As kind of a way forward for third parties. But, this is basically still the PlayStation 4. Your account will come over. All of your games and saves will come over and your PSN account like all the stuff you would expect to come right in, comes right in. Controllers will work, all that sort of stuff. So it's really about This kind of NEO mode concept. So as of October, games that are hitting the streets in October. Developers shipping games will be expected to be supporting NEO mode right then and there. Expected? That will be part of the requirement to ship a PlayStation 4 game. Nice! As of October. Late September, you'll be expected to have a day one patch, enabling the abode. None of these documents actually refer to a release date for the device and they do in fact say that they're okay with the idea of developers shipping neo-supporting games ahead of the release of the upgraded console so we can't necessarily pin this down and say well obviously the console is coming this October But it probably won't come out before October. [LAUGH] Right. It could be early next year. We don't really know. But this is their holiday console then. It could be, yeah, or it could be a Q1 console. I don't know. Right, okay, yeah. We won't know until they officially start talking about it, which they still haven't done. So yeah, that's kinda the The interesting stuff. You know? Their requirements include stuff like. In Neo mode the game must run at at least the same frame rate. [LAUGH] If not better than. Yeah. Right. The base mode version of the game. Developers that have games on the market all ready. Or games that are shipping before late September. They will have the option to patch neo support into their games. And I can think of a few games that that would be great for. Fall Out 4 would maybe benefit from that. [INAUDIBLE] And that sort of stuff. We'll kind of see how developers take to that. If the patch ends up being a lot worse And the game's not super popular. I don't really see a lot of reason for developers to go back and do that work. Yeah. But those games will run on a [UNKNOWN], the [UNKNOWN] can run ace mode. So all that software still runs and it should with what they're saying, we'll see How it goes. It should run just as it does on your existing PlayStation 4 today. Interesting. What about neo features? Cuz there's a mention of like, you know no there won't be a rocket leak special car in neo mode. Right. But then Austin continued and said, but what might happen is a local four player co-op could be present and then hey. Maybe Neo mode can do eight player co-op. Right, eight player co-op offline. Yeah. So that's the specific there, you can't, as a developer you wouldn't be able to say hey if you have a Neo, you'll have a higher player count online. This is 32 players on Neo, 16 on PS4 online. Right. You can't segregate the user base at all Along those lines. You can't have neo exclusive features. So, but you can have enhanced versions of those features that may run in neo mode. So that's why the The local multiplayer thing happens. The mode exists on the base PS4, but is a four-player mode. Right. But on Neo, maybe, it's an eight-player mode. It's not a warning. Is that not a feature? Well, but, yes it is. But they're saying the mode must exist in some form. You can't be like, Perfect Dark without the expansion pack, where it's like you can't play any of this. Stuff without this thing. It's more like, you can play everything with a base PS4. But in some cases you may be able to say like, well we've raised the player count in this offline mode. Because they can't segregate the online mode, so they can't do it there. And that was more provided as an example. Right. Of something that the developer could do as opposed to like, I don't know that this will actually come to pass. Okay. But so you couldn't do VR only on the Neo. Okay. You would have to support it in both places. You can't do exclusive modes. But you could enhance your existing modes as long as it doesn't segregate the user bases. This isn't going to impact the breakout box thing we saw with the Playstation VR? We don't know about that either. So there really isn't any mention of VR in the stuff that we've seen. So I would think that they would build that breakout box into the console at this point. But maybe that's a cost thing that they just don't want to do and And all that sort of stuff remains to be seen, but that breakout box. There's no real power in that thing for games. It's just kind of necessary for the VR stuff to work. So one way or another. It kinda doesn't matter. It would be just more of a convenience thing. The same way that if you try to hook or connect up to a launch 360. Right. You had to use external power whereas the later 360s just had the connect port right on it. Yeah. So it seems like it be sort of like that difference. It sounds from what your talking about they're taking all the right boxes that they're doing right by the current consumers but also upgrading this other one. Yeah. But is there an argument to be said if they. Took the shackles off a little bit when it comes to the older people who own the PlayStation 4. The older PlayStation 4 and I'm a PlayStation 4 player myself whose Playstation 4 literally broke over the weekend or last week. Bummer. Now you're in a tough spot, what do you do? Like if they were to care less for current owners, then they could really do something with this one. Does it feels like it's a little bit tame? This feels like these are the These are the mandates today and these are the mandates for launch. Right. And I think what happens two years from now, what happens a year from now, will depend on what the makeup of consoles in the marketplace is. If a bunch of these NEOs sell to the point where that's the dominate version of the console, then maybe in a year, maybe in two years, they'll go like alright we're going to relax some of these restrictions and you can maybe push further into neo exclusive territory. I mean they did that with the Xbox's, the arcade version, where the hard drive on that, Yeah eventually all it takes With Microsoft with stuff like that all it took was a first party game getting waived on one of the common things. So every time a Halo would come out and do something that other third party games were not allowed to do, every third party would go like, well you did it for them Right So we're doing it now and they would go okay. So we'll see how that stuff goes, but I think it makes sense for out of the gate to alienate existing consumers. And, but I do agree that it seems like if they didn't have that restriction maybe you could lean into the power a little bit more and get a little bit more out of it. But at the same time, these numbers are higher, but I don't know that they're like world crushingly high. You're not gonna take your, Like built PC and throw it out a window. And you're like now I got a Ne-Yo, but I don't know. It's a weird spot, and I think that all of video games is in really weird territory. Yeah. > Between this happening, with everything Microsoft's trying to do. Pushing onto the PC. In weird ways that aren't always great. Yeah.>>And what VR is starting to do to things, or what once people can actually get a headset, what that may do to video games in general. Like, we're entering. strange uncharted territory. Yeah nobody seems like they're on even feet at the moment. Yeah, even you look at Sony and you would expect them to be like they're the market leader. They're kind of people to determine a certain cadence, they can kind of sit back a little bit. They're doing the thing that all console manufacturers do, just in a different way. They're getting to this point where hey we found ways to make the existing console inexpensive way, but instead of turning that into pure profit for them by just retooling there internals. Well it's part of this process, we can actually make it more powerful, so why don't we do that too.>>That's a massive twist a knife in Microsoft's back though right? What does somebody coming up this christmas, somebody want's to buy a console and they, for whatever reason have to pick one up Yeah. This late in the game, but this deep in, Xbox one becomes a much more difficult proposition I think so too, but we don't know what Microsoft is up to yet. Right. You know? Like Phil Spenser back at their spring showcase not that long ago was kind of alluding to the idea of an upgradeable console And this was also in context of like, hey, Quantum Break's coming to PC. And, I fully expect from here on out every first party Xbox game will appear on the PC. I got a message giving me a free version of this cuz I have an Xbox one. [CROSSTALK] Right, yeah, yeah, they'll do a cross buy, for pre-orders that's how Quantum Beak went. So, [CROSSTALK] They're trying to pull whatever leverage they can to get more excitement around their games and get a bigger audience. Putting that stuff on the PC maybe mitigates some of the, a lot of the, them being a bit behind the PS4, or it can. But we don't know what they're doing with the Xbox platform. Other than probably turning it more and more into brand obviously. There's an XBox app on Windows 10. Right. They have multiple games you think of as "XBox games" in the Windows 10 store now. It seems like they'll continue to lean into that. So why won't they then also have an upgraded console at some point too? They've alluded to some of that stuff, but then Spencer kind of backed away from it a little bit and said, I think the quote was something along the lines of I'm not gonna ship someone a screwdriver and a video card. Right. Which obviously, no. But you might sell them a more powerful Xbox console at some point down the line. Yeah. Which all of this at some point adds up to why wouldn't you just buy a PC. Yeah that's exactly how I think of it. They're certainly more expensive to build if you don't have one today but if you're The reasons not to buy The reasons to have a console and not to have a PC which existed ten years ago don't exist anymore. Yeah. And all the big console games are going on PC. Yeah I know. All the third party stuff is everywhere, quality of life stuff is so much better on PC, [UNKNOWN] before is last like **** when it comes to Harvard never was before. I mean there's [UNKNOWN]. With the way Steam is being run those games go on sale a lot. So it's more expensive upfront but I bet if you're smart about it it kind of balances out in the end. It's not for everyone, I mean so people just want to sit down Put a disc in a thing and play. And PCs are still not that, you know. Go get a Steam box and tell me if it's that. Right. That's not even that. It's not a good feeling. Like PC, I have one at home and I plan on upgrading that soon. But you know throw in Fallout 4 I've gotta tone it down all the way, and it's just like I wish this could be better. And I was just playing a game yesterday on PS4 and now it's like What I imagine down the road is man, I wonder how cool or how much better this would be if I had the Neo. Right, right. Yeah. And that's a very frustrating thing because that's, you buy a console and it lasts you for five year. That's it. And you're like cool, everyone's got the same thing. Especially, imagine someone who bought a PS4 for the first time this week. Yes. Yeah. [LAUGH] Like my brother. I convinced him last week to get a PS4. Really? Yeah. Yeah. And hey, if you think about when the New Nintendo 3DS came out. Right. Companies like GameStop were lining up to give you a decent chunk of money for your existing 3DS as part of an upgrade transaction. You would have to imagine they would be doing something like that. And there's even a potential case to be made for Sony to try to do some kind of thing for their existing,- Right. Consumer base, but I don't know about that. I mean the worst thing I can think of right now is that developers come out with neo versions of their games which are like. You know [UNKNOWN] on the old version, and it works on the old one too. Yeah. But we've optimized it so it'll work even better on that. And then trying to sell it instead of patching it? Yeah. Yeah, if I were Sony that would be the first thing I would say- [LAUGH] You absolutely cannot do this. We will not allow you to do this. You have to patch your existing game if you're gonna sell a game to the year edition. No. Cuz they can't afford to, that would anger people, that would be probably a bit over the line with something that already seems a little shaky. But yeah, I'm curious to see what they say about it when they do start talking about all this stuff. And how they attempt to position it cuz I think it's an awkward move. Well yeah, you've got the, at a high end. Is it truly high enough if they have to be hem-strung by the previous console. And if you just bother previous console. Are you gonna suddenly start getting 20 frames a second on all your games because everyone is optimizing for Neo first and foremost. Right. It's a weird road to walk down. I kind of understand why they might have chosen to do this, because it's not like the consoles were all that powerful to begin with. Right. They might be getting tapped out. They might not have been able to make it five years. Yeah. But yeah, it's like I said, it's a real weird time. E3's gonna be exciting. Yeah. We got all that stuff, and we got Nintendo. Yeah. [LAUGH] You know. And X is gonna come out there and here's our left field thing. It's doesn't even factor into whatever these idiots are doing. [LAUGH] We're our own idiots, you know, they're like that. It's really exciting. It's crazy. As long as that Mario Maker rumor turns out to be true. [LAUGH] As long as there's a new Mario Maker, or a port of Mario Maker. Yeah, annual. Become an annualized franchise. Like they always meant to. This one's got three new mushrooms. [LAUGH] Yeah, less than two months until E3. Exciting times, who knows how many new consoles we'll be staring down the barrel of. And in just over two months time. Jeff Gerstmann, thank you so much for coming on. Anytime. If people want to hear more about your breaking story on Neo they can go to Giant Bomb and the Bombcast as well? Yeah, GiantBomb.com, the podcast is up right now, you could be listening to it right now. You could be. But wait until the end of this. But don't, listen to this one first. Yeah. It's almost over. Rob [UNKNOWN] thank you so much for coming on. Thank you. I really appreciate it, we'll get you back out there. [MUSIC]