Today in Japan Sony officially announced its next portable gaming system. At the moment the code name for the new system is NGP which stands for “Next Generation Portable” but in all likelihood it will be called “PSP2” if Sony’s gaming history has anything to say about it (PSONE, PS2, PS3). This new portable device has a projected release date for 2011 but no official date or pricing for the system has been revealed. Sony did say to expect it out for the 2011 holiday shopping season (likely September or November).
A few new notable features include an all new small flash memory card system used to store software and digital downlads, a touch screen on top and a touch pad on the bottom for more involved gameplay experiences, TWO joysticks (finally!), and the ability to add to your “Trophy” (PlayStation’s version of X-Box 360’s “Achievements”) score in conjunction with your PlayStation 3. Below is a list of the Specs released so far;
CPU: ARM Corte-A9 core (4 core)
Approx. 182.0 x 18.6 x 83.5mm (width x height x depth) (tentative, excludes largest projection)
Screen: (Touch screen) 5 inches (16:9), 960 x 544, Approx. 16 million colors, OLED Multi touch screen (capacitive type)
Rear touch pad: Multi touch pad (capacitive type)
Cameras: Front camera, Rear camera
Sound: Built-in stereo speakers, built-in microphone
Sensors: Six-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer)
Three-axis electronic compass
Wi-Fi location service support
Directional buttons (Up/Down/Right/Left)
Action buttons (Triangle, Circle, Cross, Square)
Shoulder buttons (Right/Left)
Right stick, Left stick
START button, SELECT button
Volume buttons (+/-)
Mobile network connectivity (3G)
IEEE 802.11b/g/n (n = 1×1)
(Wi-Fi) (Infrastructure mode/Ad-hoc mode)
Bluetooth 2.1+EDR (A2DP/AVRCP/HSP)
Sony boasts that this new device will have graphics and gameplay experiences similar to the PlayStation 3. Demos shown thus far have been ports of famous franchise games such as UNCHARTED, LITTLE BIG PLANET, and KILLZONE. I truly hope this does not mean that we will simply get ports of games we can already play on our PlayStation 3’s at home. I personally am looking for unique gaming experiences that are exclusive to the handheld, not just more of the same only on a portable device. Only time will tell us if the are any awesome and unique games on the way.
I have to admit that I have had (still have) pretty much every gaming system since the ATARI 2600 worth owning and I skipped the original PSP at launch. I finally bought one but never found anything truly unique like a lot of the games on the NINTENDO DS. While this looks like one beautiful and sleek system, I remain skeptical. I DON’T want just a portable PlayStation 3.What I DO want are unique games that can only be played on the system itself.
Stay tuned for official price and release date announcements as well as details on upcoming games that may get me more excited for this device.