Killzone Shadow Fall’s ter Heide: PS4′s “future proof: server side is where we’ll see new things happening”

The PS4‘s not even out but Killzone Shadow Fall‘s game director Steven ter Heide is already talking about the console’s potential future, specifically its server side evolution – the services and other functions PlayStation 4 can access remotely.

The future of PS4

“This machine has been set up to be a great point of departure” states ter Heide. ”The way that the console had been set up, I think it’s going to evolve, not necessarily on the hardware side, just in terms of services and what people are able to get out of a locked piece of hardware is going to be very exciting”. For ter Heide it’s all about the “server side” functionality of PS4 including things like cloud gaming and the Share button. “I think evolving those services is a lot more exciting from a gameplay experience point of view. Of course it’s nice to be able to do more poly and be able to do all of that, and people will find ways to do more of that, but I think the server side is where we will see a lot of new things happening”.

While he does admit, “I don’t have my crystal ball, I don’t know what’s going to be the killer feature of the future”, it’s the potential of PS4 that’s exiting to the Killzone director, “I think what I like about the PlayStation 4 is how forward looking it is. There’s a lot of elements in there that are kind of new but you know they’re going to evolve and at some point contribute to the experience or change over time. I think what we’ve seen with PlayStation 3 and the initial roll out of PlayStation Network and what it is today –  there’s a lot of new features which have been added. It’s constantly evolving”.

Something that should help the PS4′s progress is that it’s, “a really well balanced machine”. That’s due in part to the way the various components integrate so that, “there’s no component that lets the other one down”. The example he gives is the balance between the amount of memory and your ability to use it. “So there’s enough memory bandwidth that you can actually use all of the memory, rather than just saying ‘oh the amount of memory is absolutely the most important thing because you can have all the memory you want’. If you then don’t have enough processing power to deal with it then it’s still no use”. It’s that ter Heide believes will lead to Sony’s machine being, “future proof enough to evolve and have more exciting products in a couple of years time”.

“PS4 is future proof enough to still
evolve and have more exciting
products in a couple of years time”

Overall ter Heide refers again to PS3 as a good indication of what you can expect for the future of PS4. “If you look what developers were able to do over the lifetime of a PlayStation 3 and how much fidelity and types of gameplay have evolved, I think PlayStation 4 will offer a similar type of experience again. In the next couple of years I think we’ll see the sort of things that are not possible right now, but people will find a way to do it”.

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