It goes like this: Sony releases a console, the first year or two is fine, but it really starts to hit its stride in year three.
By year five, we are swimming in quality games, and there are different models of the console to choose from. With the PS4, those models are the original, the PS4 Slim, and the PS4 Pro, the latter of which released at the end of November 2016.
Why did Sony release a new, more powerful version of the same console? Because after only a few years in the wild, the standard PS4 had already been left lagging behind by high-spec PCs. Players needed something to show off the image quality of their 4K TVs, and the PS4 Pro acted as a mid-generational stopgap.
The console is still having a record-breaking run. By the end of March 2018 Sony has sold 76 million PlayStation 4 consoles. And it expects to shift another 16 million in the coming financial year. That may be a slow down of sorts, but it’s nothing to sniff at.
Despite all of this, fire up a high-spec PC now and even the PS4 Pro is miles behind. Sony will probably want to close this gap as soon as possible with the PS5. Especially now that the CEO of the company, John Kodera, is openly admitting that the console is approaching the final phase of its life cycle.
Time flies like an arrow and it won’t be long before you’ll be able to pre-order the PS5, so let’s take a look at everything we know so far.
PS5 Release Date
The PS5 will be released in time for this Christmas and Sony will be announcing a solid release date in the not too distant future. That means we could see the PS5 make its debut at E3 2019, if not sooner.
Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida was recently asked about the possibility of the next generation of PlayStation, saying: “At this point, what I can say is it’s necessary to have a next-generation hardware”.
There’s already the hint of a new next-gen console lurking in the code of the Unreal Engine, codenamed Erebus which is likely the PS5 given its Greek codename.
PS5 E3 2019
The PS5 didn’t feature at E3 this year. Like we said earlier, Sony is really hitting its stride with PS4 games right now. Sony is leading the console race this generation, beating everyone on hardware sales and, most importantly, releasing the most exciting exclusives.
Sony will not want to cannibalise its own upcoming games by telling people to start saving for the next console, particular as the PS4 Pro didn’t release that long ago.
But we can’t help thinking Sony may hint at the PS5, its potential or tech specs. Keep an eye out for talk of “next-generation” technology and how that might be used for future projects.
Sony recently announced that it wouldn’t be attending E3 in 2019, which came as a surprise after the PlayStation Experience showcase was cancelled this year as Sony was worried it wouldn’t have enough to showcase. Sony has promised that they will release more information in due course at a separate event.
A round of fake PlayStation 5 invites were sent out in January 2019 hinting at a PS5 reveal in February, but don’t be fooled. Although the invites looked convincing, anyone with Photoshop and 10 minutes spare can knock up a semi-convincing invitation. Just don’t send it from a gmail address…
Obviously, we don’t have any official announcements for games on the PS5 just yet, since the console hasn’t been announced, but there are always games that never manage to release on their target generation. Remember The Last Guardian, anyone? So, what will be this year’s The Last Guardian?
What we can confirm is that the PS5 will support 8K resolution, and will be backwards-compatible with PS4 games.
According to one respected industry analyst, Sony has now shifted first-party studios to focus on the development of games for the PlayStation 5. Clearly, Sony is deep into the creation of new games for the PS5. According to that report, some unannounced games may straddle the PS4 and the PS5 to become cross-gen releases. That leaves the question of what games already announced will arrive on the PS4 and PS5, or just skip ahead to become PS5 exclusives?
Here’s a list of games that could well skip PS4 and end up releasing on PS5, as well as some obvious candidates:
- Death Stranding – even though Hideo Kojima says it’s coming this gen
- Ghost of Tsushima
- The Last of Us: Part 2
- Cyberpunk 2077 – CD Projekt Red already confirmed Cyberpunk 2077 is built with next-gen consoles in mind
- Call of Duty PS5
- FIFA PS5
- PES PS5
- Battlefield PS5
- Final Fantasy 7 Remake
- Ghost of Tsushima
Photos of the leaked PS5 dev kit started doing the rounds back in October and it was confirmed that they were the same design feature in patents uncovered last August.
PlayStation’s lead architect Mark Cerny discussed the internal components in PS5, which will use a third-generation Ryzen CPU with eight cores, based on the 7nm Zen 2 architecture.
The “Oberon” GPU is a custom chip based on Radeon’s Navi family, with support for ray tracing. If you’re looking for an explainer on ray tracing and its significance, we’ve got one for you right here. The SSD inside the console is super fast. According to Wired, it took around 0.8 seconds to fast travel in Spider-Man compared to 15 seconds on PlayStation 4 Pro.
In fact, a video showing just that SSD speed in action has leaked. Here’s a demonstration – really the first look at the PS5 in action – of PS4 game Spider-Man loading on a PlayStation 5. It’s really worth seeing to get a good idea of how much of a game-changer this is going to be.
Sony's official video comparing performance of PS4 Pro vs next-gen PlayStation pic.twitter.com/2eUROxKFLq
— Takashi Mochizuki (@mochi_wsj) May 21, 2019
PS5 will support 8K resolution and will contain a disc-tray, 3D audio integration, and will be compatible with the current PSVR model. Images of the PS5’s controller have also been leaked via Reddit and the patent design for the new controller shows that Sony plans to ditch the light bar and they’ll have bigger triggers, similar to an Xbox controller. Cerny also mentions that controllers will come with improved haptic feedback that will better simulate tension, if you’re wondering how the PS5 is going to add to your immersion.
Sony launched the PS3 at $499 for the cheapest model and sales suffered as a result compared to the Xbox 360. This is a mistake Sony will not want to repeat since the money lost can easily be clawed back via online subscriptions and software sales. The PS4 and the PS4 Pro launched at $399, so expect the PS5 to be similarly priced.
PS5 Backwards Compatibility
Sony went all-in on its streaming subscription service PlayStation Now this generation, while Microsoft took a different tactic with the Xbox One. Particularly with the Xbox One X, backwards compatibility has been extremely popular – with the console upscaling games and making them look like they have a new lick of paint.
As we said earlier, it has now been confirmed that the PS5 will be backwards-compatible with PS4 games.
PS5 Changing PSN ID
You can now change that ultra edgy PSN ID to something cooler now. Be warned: if Sony deems the new ID to be offensive, it’ll be changed to a placeholder to give you the opportunity to revert back to your own one or change it to something more appropriate.