PS4 architecture: Cerny explains “developer-centric approach”

Wednesday, 27 March 2013 12:00 GMT By Dave Cook

PS4 was designed in collaboration with the wants and needs of Sony’s flagship developers. Lead system architect on PS4 Mark Cerny has shed light on why the company didn’t want the console to be seen as a “puzzle” to studios.

Speaking with Gamasutra, Cerrny said, “The biggest thing was that we didn’t want the hardware to be a puzzle that programmers would be needing to solve to make quality titles,” in relation to the PS3’s difficult to grasp CELL processor.

When approaching PS4, Cerny opened the floor to studios on how best to approach Sony’s next processor, “My first tour of the developers, I had a questionnaire where I just asked them their thoughts on what the next generation might bring. The largest piece of feedback we got was that they wanted unified memory.”

“We quickly could tell that we should put either four or eight cores on the hardware. The consensus was that any more than eight, and special techniques would be needed to use them, to get efficiency. It definitely was very helpful to have gone out and have done the outreach before sitting down to design the hardware.”

This echoes claims from Killzone: Shadow Fall studio Guerilla Games last month, which said the PS4 wasn’t designed in an “ivory tower”, unlike its predecessor. Check out the quotes here.