PlayStation

Sony & Numskull launch PlayStation VR headset stand

PlayStation_VR_Headset_Mount_Numskull

If you love your PlayStation VR and want to showcase it instead of just shoving it in a cabinet when you’re done gaming, the following is just for you. Sony and Numskull have teamed up to design an official PlayStation VR headset stand.

 Display your VR headset the best way with this stylish officially licensed PlayStation VR Headset Stand. This high-quality build obsidian headset stand comes with an adjustable metallic base with engraved logos, and a velcro tie to manage your VR headset cables. 

According to Numskull, the headset stand offers:

Ratchet and Clank movie now available on Netflix

ratchet_and_clank_movie

Just a quick heads up to all you Ratchet and Clank fans: the duo’s 2016 movie, which has been available for some time on Blu-ray, is now available to stream on Netflix in the US, UK, and other various countries. Though I’m a big fan of the series, I’ve admittedly not had a chance to see the movie yet so this might be my opportunity. For those of you who have seen it, let me know what you thought of it.

Horizon: Zero Dawn story trailer sets the stage for an epic tale

horizon_zero_dawn_story_trailer

Earlier this morning, Guerrilla Games dropped what’s likely to be the final story trailer we’ll see for Horizon: Zero Dawn before it launches in February. Though previous pieces have given us a glimpse of the world, this is the first trailer that truly depicts the story that we’ll be following and it’s looking epic. If I had one bone to pick with the trailer release, it’s that after experiencing the game run on PS4 Pro at 4K, it’s hard to see the game in 1080p and that’s the only format the trailer has thus far been released in.

Hopefully PlayStation and GG change that soon. Till then, here is the Horizon: Zero Dawn story trailer for your viewing pleasure.

PS4 momentum continues as it near 55 million units sold

ps4_pro_wood_bg_ces2017

During the Sony CES 2017 keynote, Kaz Hirai revealed an interesting statistic about PlayStation – during the holiday season, which ranges from November 20th through January 1st, over 6.2 million PS4s were sold worldwide, which has helped push total units sold to 53.4 million units.

Best “things to do” on PlayStation VR

CES_2016_PS_VR_London_Heist

The Verge has put together a list of “best things” you can do on differing VR headsets and as expected, PlayStation VR is part of that list. As Adi Robertson writes:

 PlayStation VR had a reasonably good crop of launch titles, which we reviewed here, and some more interesting releases on the way. In particular, we’re fans of trippy rhythm games Rez Infinite and Thumper, both of which are also great outside VR. PlayStation VR Worlds might seem like just another minigame collection at first glance, but it’s got at least one very substantive action experience, the Guy Ritchie-influenced London Heist. 

But those aren’t the only titles on his recommendation list.

The Last of Us Part II tech video shows you Naughty Dog’s “most advanced character model”

the_last_of_us_part_2_tech_video

One of the most informative parts of the PlayStation Experience was during The Last of Us: Part II panel when Creative Director Neil Druckmann took to stage to shed some light on their latest mo-cap tech that’s helping shape their games and bring them to life. Naughty Dog has been one of the leading proponents of using motion capture to better bring their characters to life and as you’ll see in the video below, the amount of detail they’re now able to capture alongside the extra power of the PS4 is quite remarkable. Druckmann in regards to their newly updated game engine:

 So this is by far, within Sony’s group, this is the most advanced character model we’ve ever created. 

A “sobering” debut for VR

vr_revenue_2016

I have no doubt that VR (and, lumped under that, AR) is going to play a big role in the future of technology, but like the arrival of smartphones, we still don’t realize how exactly they’ll impact us. Mid 2016 was full of hype about the thundering debut of VR, mainly due to the high expectations for PlayStation VR sales, but as the year nears its end, everyone is now revising their initial estimates downwards. Here is Chris Kerr from Gamasutra on the “sobering” debut VR has had thus far.

HDR video comes to YouTube on PS4

ps4_youtube

Regular readers of the site will know I’ve been putting together a collection of series which have been subtitled “the death of 4K Blu-ray” which falls in line with why I thought a lack of 4K Blu-ray on PS4 Pro was nothing but noise.

Netflix and Amazon already provide 4K HDR but now YouTube is getting into the HDR game as well. Matt Brian from Engadget writes:

YouTube comes to PlayStation VR

Official_PlayStation_VR_13

According to Adi Robertson from The Verge, PlayStation VR has gained a big new way to consume VR and 360 content thanks to a new update from Google.

 YouTube’s VR video collection just added a major new platform: Sony’s PlayStation VR. As spotted by UploadVR, users across Reddit, Twitter, and other sites say that Version 1.09 of YouTube adds PSVR support, although it’s apparently rolling out slowly. While we haven’t been able to confirm the change yet, it apparently lets users with headsets select the normal version or PlayStation VR version of the app at launch, then watch YouTube’s large collection of flatscreen and 360-degree videos inside PSVR. 

Why PlayStation wants to get into mobile gaming in one chart

mobile_game_revenue_2016

There has been a lot of talk about Sony wanting to enter the mobile gaming market with titles from PlayStation. Till now, Sony has dipped its toes in the ever-growing market by releasing companion games and apps, including Uncharted: Fortune Hunter on iOS. On the other hand, for a company like Nintendo who can no longer compete in the dedicated console space and is being squeezed by mobile games in the handheld space, embracing mobile is their only path going forward. For Sony, PlayStation is in a period of tremendous success but as the above chart shows, it’s nothing compared to the mobile market.

Naughty Dog co-founder sold studio to Sony to secure its future

jason_rubin

Worth their weight in gold, Insomniac Studios is arguably one of the most important developers to Sony and the success PlayStation enjoys. No matter the cost of a game they produce, between the volume they ship and the awards they bring home, Naughty Dog is the studio that delivers. During the late 90s when working on the Crash Bandicoot series, ND was not yet a party of Sony and functioned like Insomniac Games by creating exclusive games for PlayStation and operating independently. As Jason Dunning writes for PlayStation LifeStyle, all of that would change, thanks to the success of the series and a conversation between co-founder Jason Rubin and then Sony executive Kelly Flock:

 In 2001, Rubin and Gavin decided to sell the studio to Sony following the success of Crash Bandicoot. After admitting that they definitely agonized over the decision, Rubin recalled a moment where former Sony executive Kelly Flock said Naughty Dog was at the top of the world before the sale and Crash was the #1 franchise out there – ahead of Tomb Raider and Gran Turismo in terms of dollar amount and units sold – and the company would never be bigger than the biggest in the world, so they should think about safe harbor. 

As I mentioned, ND is a studio that rightfully gets what it wants – from elaborate motion capture equipment to early access to hardware and why wouldn’t they? Creating games like Uncharted and The Last of Us requires pushing everything – from the studio’s own creative boundaries to the hardware that they’re developing for. Jason Rubin, who now leads the Head of Content at Oculus, also realized this:

PlayStation Vue adds a ton more local channels from ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox

ps_vue_channels_elite_2016

The reality of Sony shifting from being purely a hardware company to one that incorporates software and services can be seen with their efforts in PlayStation Vue. Now available nationwide, PS Vue, their cloud-based TV streaming service has just added a plethora of local channels from ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox and others to further beef up their offerings. Available on all the tiers, the added channels include:

Sony shifting from hardware to software and services?

playstation_services_now_vue_plus

I’ve written extensively about a transformation that’s been happening at PlayStation where a division that was once responsible for just one console every few years is now one of the biggest pillars of Sony. One key reason for it is that PlayStation is shifting from just a hardware vendor – though this year alone, they’ve released more hardware than ever before, PS4 slim, PS4 Pro, and PS VR – to a company that’s rich with services. They include PlayStation Now, which gives you the ability to stream PS3 games on numerous devices, including PS4, PC, and countless 4K TVs and PlayStation Vue, Sony’s vision of what the future of TV looks like. And one key advantage that services have over hardware is the recurring revenue they produce. Where with a PS4 purchase, you only once plunk down $299 or $399 once and purchase a handful of games a year, with PS Now or PS Vue, you’re continuously generating revenue for Sony and investors are beginning to take note of that.

PlayStation to release Platinum Wireless Headset, does everything better

playstation_platinum_wireless_headsetPlayStation already sells the well received and modestly priced Gold Wireless Headset. Coming in at just $99, the Gold series is a must own for anybody who is serious about gaming or seriously doesn’t want to piss off their significant other when gaming late at night. Now Sony is following up with another addition to the family, the Platinum Wireless Headset.

PlayStation VR sold out in UK till 2017

Official_PlayStation_VR_12

If you’ve been wanting PS VR and live in the UK, hopefully you’ve already bought one or somebody has bought one for you because as it stands, there won’t be any more units till 2017. Chris Mawson for Power Up Gaming:

 Sony’s PlayStation VR is now completely sold out in the UK until 2017.

Those hoping to pick up Sony’s virtual reality headset as a late Christmas present have had to instead turn to resellers or foreign retailers for their system, after the vast majority of online retailers sent out emails to their customers earlier today informing them that no stock was expected until early in the new year.