PS4’s familiar architecture is “pleasant surprise”, says Ubisoft Montreal boss

Monday, 8 April 2013 13:15 GMT By Dave Cook

PS4 has proven to be a “pleasant surprise” according to Ubisoft Montreal CEO Yannis Mallat. The developer has compared Sony’s latest rig to previous PlayStation models and has deemed PS4 to be both familiar and manageable. Smiles all round it seems.

Speaking with CVG, Mallat said, “PlayStation 4 really comes as a pleasant surprise because indeed it’s a very familiar architecture. I think it’s paying off for us deciding to develop on high-end PCs early. It’s a less complex transition.”

He also compared Sony’s next-gen rig to previous iterations, and said, “From what we can talk about, which is the PlayStation 4, it’s been a radical change from those guys.

“I’ll tell you an anecdote: When I was the producer on Prince of Persia: Sands of Time we managed to get our hands on a very good programmer who’s still on the Assassin’s Creed core team.

“One day on his desk he had a black book all written in Japanese, and I was like, ‘what is that?’ It was the documentation support for coding for PS2. ‘That’s why I wanted to have Japanese lessons,’ he said – to understand and make the most out of the machine.

“That day I understood how complex it was to develop on PlayStation 2. So we were eager to find out what the PlayStation 3 would be in terms of architecture, and it was pretty much the same but more complex.”

This isn’t the first time we’ve heard this from developers. It seems the blanket opinion is that PS4 is easier to code for than its predecessors. For example we saw Epic Games boss Mark Rein say that PS4 is “Like the world’s best PC”.

What’d your take?