Sony Details New Features and Improvements for PlayStation 5

Sony has dropped some major news on its upcoming next-gen console and the two main highlights are that, yes, it will be called Playstation 5, but it is not coming until the end of 2020.

The news comes from Sony Playstation Division’s President and CEO Jim Ryan who revealed a launch date plus additional details on the Playstation 5 on Monday.

Better Haptics and Triggers for Improved Immersion

He says that PS5’s controllers are going to introduce two new key innovations. First, they will adopt a new haptic feedback feature to replace the typical “rumble” effect we’ve seen on Playstation controllers for decades.

Instead, they will have more nuanced feedback to better reflect in-game actions such as “being able to tell the difference between crashing into a wall and walking through grass.” You’ll be able to feel different textures like a smooth floor, muddy ground, etc. distinctly.

They will also introduce “adaptive triggers” that will allow developers to put adjust the resistance of the L2/R2 buttons depending on in-game actions.

For example, the trigger buttons will become tenser to duplicate the sensation of drawing a bow or for pressing the accelerator in a car and will remain loose for normal gameplay.

Hardware-Based Ray Tracing

Another thing that Jim clarified was ray tracing. PS5 will handle ray tracing through GPU hardware rather than software – a topic that sparked several online discussions when the console was first revealed.

For reference, ray tracing is a rendering technique used in games to realistically reflect light on different surfaces and to light certain areas of the game just like actual light does. The fact that both the upcoming Xbox and the PlayStation 5 is getting this new tech is good news.

Smaller Games and Faster Loading Times

The speedy SSD storage on the Playstation 5 has been confirmed yet again. This will not only allow for snappy loading and startup times but faster installation speeds as well. Due to the slower hard drive on PlayStation 4 and being restricted to slower loading times, developers resorted to using repetitive code to speed up load times.

However, this had the effect of drastically increasing the size of the games. As an example, Red Dead Redemption 2 occupies over 100 GB of space on the PS4.

Installation Improvements

As for installing games, the Playstation 5 will allow you to install specific game data. This means that you will able to grab just the multiplayer part of a game or just the singleplayer campaign of a given title. You can also choose to delete the singleplayer campaign after you finish it and choose to keep just the multiplayer bit.

There is no word on backward compatibility still, and being able to play previous generation games is a key requirement for many. Hopefully, Sony will not leave us in the dark for too long.

  • Based on the fact that any digital PS3 game had to be reformatted to work on PS4, I would expect those games to still work on the PS5. The internals of the PS5 are essentially just a faster version of the PS4, rather than having a completely different CPU architecture like the PS3 possessed.

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