Remember this fake mock-up of the PlayStation 4? Well, it probably won't look anything like that, but at least the real deal could be unveiled soon…
A tipster has evidently provided Kotaku with a wealth of information concerning the new PlayStation console, including the codename – "Orbis" – and possible launch date of 2013.
The unit might include an AMD x64 CPU and AMD Southern Islands GPU; these specs should allow the new system to display games at a ridiculous resolution of 4096 x 2160, which is way above most current HDTVs right now. It should also let us play games in 3D in 1080p; currently, all 3D games must be scaled to 720p. The source says beta units will be shipped to developers at the end of this year, with an eventual launch of 2013.
Now, the fun parts that are bound to incite plenty of discussion: First, no backwards compatibility, so your PS3 games won't be able to play on the system. B/C disappeared rather quickly on the PS3, as it went from full support on the original 60GB PS3 in 2006 to stripped down B/C in later models and now, no current model allows for PS2 titles. So maybe this isn't a surprise. But secondly – and this one is gonna annoy people, I think – it seems Orbis won't allow for used games, either.
Like the rumored new Xbox (codenamed "Durango"), "multiple sources" say that Orbis will also "have some kind of anti-used games measures built into the console." Here's the snippet from the article:
"Here's how our main source says it's currently shaping up: new games for the system will be available one of two ways, either on a Blu-Ray disc or as a PSN download (yes, even full retail titles). If you buy the disc, it must be locked to a single PSN account, after which you can play the game, save the whole thing to your HDD, or peg it as "downloaded" in your account history and be free to download it at a later date.
Don't think you can simply buy the disc and stay offline, though; like many PC games these days, you'll need to have a PSN account and be online to even get the thing started.
If you then decide to trade that disc in, the pre-owned customer picking it up will be limited in what they can do. While our sources were unclear on how exactly the pre-owned customer side of things would work, it's believed used games will be limited to a trial mode or some other form of content restriction, with consumers having to pay a fee to unlock/register the full game.
This would allow used games to continue to be sold at outlets such as GameStop, while also appeasing major publishers who would no longer have to implement their own haphazard approaches to 'online passes.'"
All rumor, mind you, but discuss away.