PS4 development a 'radical change' for Sony, says Ubisoft

Ubisoft Montreal CEO says PlayStation 4's PC-based architecture a "pleasant surprise."

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From a development standpoint, the PlayStation 4 is a "radical change" for Sony from past platforms. That's according to Ubisoft Montreal CEO Yannis Mallat, who told CVG that building games for Sony's next-generation platform will be "less complex" thanks to the system's PC-like architecture.

"From what we can talk about, which is the PlayStation 4, it's been a radical change from those guys," Mallat said.

The executive then provided an anecdote to demonstrate the difficult nature of making games for the PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3. He said one day he noticed a book on a developer's desk that turned out to be the documentation support for coding on the PS2.

This book was written in Japanese, and the programmer said he would need to take Japanese language lessons to get the most out of the system. It was then that Mallat said he recognized how tough it was to make PS2 games, but the situation only became more troublesome with the PS3, he said.

"That day I understood how complex it was to develop on PlayStation 2. So we were eager to find out what the PlayStation 3 would be in terms of architecture, and it was pretty much the same but more complex," Mallat said.

Mallat explained that when Ubisoft began building next-generation games like Watch Dogs and Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, the developer did so on high-end PCs. As it turned out, this was the right move, as the PS4 boasts similar architecture, Mallat said.

"PlayStation 4 really comes as a pleasant surprise because indeed it's a very familiar architecture," he said. "I think it's paying off for us deciding to develop on high-end PCs early. It's a less complex transition."

The PS4 is officially due out this holiday season, though region-specific availability is unknown. According to a past report, the system will launch in November beginning at $430.

Discussion

186 comments
DiscGuru101
DiscGuru101

The trade off ? -There is nothing special about PS4. It's a PC with 8GB RAM. The 360 always was a PC. The 720 will be a PC. So only the controller is "PlayStation" now...

We just should call it the "PC4"

Trickymaster
Trickymaster

Man, Sony already won this one. I feel like developers are very happy with Sony this time. PS3 was powerful, but it took developers years to harness the power of the Cell processor and most just defaulted to Xbox 360 then porting it to Ps3.


This will change now.

genopreetyboyo
genopreetyboyo

More Point for sony.... PS4 140 Points - Xbox 720- 0

raziel2kain
raziel2kain

sony should have done the same strategy with PS3.

GSGuy321
GSGuy321

Developers would be stupid to limit themselves to one platform. The market is so spread out now. PS, M$, PC, Mac, Android (Ouya), iOS, Handhelds... One platform won't bring in the numbers required. Anything that helps make multiplatform easier will win.

Vodoo
Vodoo

How could Sony not provide developers documentation in their native language? Japanese is not like English, where it's spoken all around the world. Japanese is mostly kept to Japan and that part of the world. If I were those companies I would've told Sony if you want me to make games for your system, give me something I can frigin read!!! Shit like that is the problem with Sonys' attitude problem, thinking their shit is the best when they've been blown away by Samsung and LG in most other sectors of the electronics market.

abcdefgabcdefgz
abcdefgabcdefgz

I like the PS4 from what I see so far. I had xbox 360 but after the red rings I have no problem switching to sony. They just need the games and given costs and both systems using PC code every game will be multiplatform I think

rgish
rgish

Finally some ps4 news. I'm tired reading all those #xboxshit )

fgjnfgh
fgjnfgh

Things are already looking great for Sony

grognard
grognard

PS4 looks like a mea culpa for all the missteps on the PS3.  The funny thing is all the people praising these changes before are the very same people who defended the things they now admit were faults with the PS3.

Good to see Sony learning from it's mistakes, but this may very well simply be a case of catching up to what MS did last gen while MS moves the goal posts even further away with their next system.  We'll have to wait and see...

rulo90
rulo90

Keep it going Sony

rgish
rgish

I love Sony )

apollo333
apollo333

Finally PC gamers will be getting games that were actually designed for them and not some crappy low-polygon port!! (Even Bioshock Infinite, which looks stunning from a distance, has octagons for circles on small objects!)

pwc2
pwc2

I'm happy that Sony made some mistakes with the PS3, so that they can learn what went wrong.

SmashBrawlerBoy
SmashBrawlerBoy

The amount of such high business sense shared among so many of you is truly astounding.

milomell
milomell

the ps4 have so much love, that the only system wars i heard is ps4 vs pc lol

Jyakotu
Jyakotu

The PC-like architecture seems to be winning over more and more developers, which is great for Sony, the PS4, and most importantly, THE GAMERS!!!

s3as3a
s3as3a

Why would the documentation only be in Japanese?

Nightrain50
Nightrain50

@DiscGuru101 are you actually complaining that games will be easier to be made for the system? You're going to be getting a $800-1000 computer for $400-500 with guaranteed life span of 6-10 years. WTF are you on about again?

SciFiCat
SciFiCat

@DiscGuru101 The advantage to this is that all PS4s have the same architecture, so developers can optimize games to function as much as possible because they know what they are dealing with before hand.  This being PC-based is a huge bonus because they can hit the ground running without having to jump hoops to learn some complex new architecture.

Phazevariance
Phazevariance

@genopreetyboyo Except 360 was already similar to PC for programming and 720 will be no different.  In fact, sony is just now catching up. 

Point MS = 1, pont sony = 0

Daian
Daian

@GSGuy321 who the hek plays games on a Mac? Macs have crappy gpus and a gaming unfriendly OS, u need an insanely expensive one to play the small number of titles properly.

hadlee73
hadlee73

@Vodoo You're describing exactly what was wrong with the Kuturagi and Hirai eras. Since Andrew House took over as SCEI Group CEO the gaming division of Sony appears to have jumped forward into the modern gaming era, where all of us have been living for the last 10 years. :P

raziel2kain
raziel2kain

@rgish micro$oft yen not revealed the 720, but this gamespot spread 720 news more than PS4. many of us believes there is sth between them.

norabbitnofun
norabbitnofun

@grognard I'm all for anything lowering the cost of next gen games, as it means more budget for more games. And if MS gets more out of 720, good for the gamers!

surferosh
surferosh

@pwc2   i agree.. sadly MS seems to be going entirely the opposite way

SmashBrawlerBoy
SmashBrawlerBoy

@pwc2 If they hadn't made mistakes, they would not have had to learn what went wrong because there would be nothing to fix! Just a second opinion...

shingui5
shingui5

@milomell people are just pissed off at MS atm.

wait till after the Nextbox has been revealed, and the pathetic arguments will start again :/

TohouAsura
TohouAsura

@Jyakotu It's winning over because it's the most documented and commonly used architecture in the world.

I really don't see any reason why they shouldn't. Sure, other architectures had their usefulness, Cell was pretty cool, but eventually, it's not the power/efficiency factor that decides, it's the common usage of it that does.

Otherwise, there wouldn't be so many Java developers :P

Gue1
Gue1

@s3as3a because it comes from Japan? Most of the time when Americans do things all the documentation is English only and no one complains... So learn to speak other languages just like you guys force people to learn English. ;)

Zerabp
Zerabp

@Phazevariance @genopreetyboyo  720 will most likely require users to always be online, have always on Kinect tracking their every word and deed in front of it and have adds up the wazzoo based on that tracking -1 googolplex, even if sony was a 0 (which they aren't) they still win.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

@Daian Ouch, sad but true!  I guess some people play World of Warcraft on Mac?  Indie titles?  Easy to run non AAA games?  

I agree though, you pay a lot for not that much power and a small selection of games.  Hell it's easier to run powerful games on Linux, because you can just install Linux on almost any PC for free.

Facelord
Facelord

@SmashBrawlerBoy@pwc2Well hopefully Nintendo learns from their mistakes with their recent string of terrible hardware. The Wii was a joke, the 3DS is a joke and the Wii U is just as big a joke, from a hardware perspective. Nintendo doesn't think about the end-user experience like Sony, they think about cutting every possible corner so their profit margins can be higher. Microsoft likes to push boundaries on what consumers are willing to put up with, Nintendo puts out mediocre hardware, Sony's fixing every one of their mistakes. Looks to me like Sony will be the best option for gamers next generation. Just thought I'd send that to you, since you look like a Nintendo fanboy. :p
I grew up with Nintendo, they just really depress me these days. At least I have PlayStation to turn to.

surferosh
surferosh

@shingui5 @milomell   not happening mate... from what we have heard so far, dont think MS will get that much love.. and what makes it even worse is that MS is not even dispelling these rumours !

MjnE
MjnE

@shingui5 @milomell only if 90% of the rumors are false, and that is something that won't happen.

s3as3a
s3as3a

@Gue1 @s3as3a Technically, I think it makes more sense to have documentation be only in English rather than only in Japanese since English is "the language of the world" but, I still don't see why it can't be translated into the language of each market the console is entering regardless of which country the product originates from. Even a sloppy software translation of everything would be useful, in my opinion, and not difficult or long to make and, the reader could refer to the original document whenever the translation is too horrible, if that is the case. 

Perhaps, the logic is that if the document is translated, it should be done perfectly and, doing it perfectly takes more time and effort.

Having said that, I am not resistant to learning new languages; I currently speak six. :)

SmashBrawlerBoy
SmashBrawlerBoy

@Gue1 @s3as3a We don't force people to learn English... it is most prominent language in the first world and therefore has become the dominant business language, which is why China will in the coming years have the largest English-speaking population, and by choice at that. We didn't force anyone to do anything :) Thanks for your opinion though.

s3as3a
s3as3a

@SmashBrawlerBoy @s3as3a @Gue1

Personally, I am a "bookworm" type so, my answer will likely be convenient for you. :P

I recommend:

1) Google Translate

2) Verbix.com

3) Schaum's Outline of Spanish Grammar

4) Flashcard software

5) Wiktionary.org

SmashBrawlerBoy
SmashBrawlerBoy

@s3as3a @Gue1 What methods did you use to become most fluent? I'm currently interested in learning Spanish. Any particular software or methods you would recommend? Traveling is currently not an option for me.

SmashBrawlerBoy
SmashBrawlerBoy

@Heavenly_King @SmashBrawlerBoy No. May I reiterate that China is actually learning English in order to aid themselves in becoming a stronger power. English is the language countries are increasingly skewing towards, and *not* Chinese. America (let's get this straight, btw, I'm not from nor do I live in the US) is the major power right now. So why would they start learning Chinese? China is rising to the occasion, "not the other way around," and so they are going to have to make adjustment, not the ones who are already at the top. AND! This is evidenced by the empirical fact that they ARE *attempting* to teach their own English by the masses, whereas the US couldn't give two shits about teaching their citizens Mandarin. Please leave self-bias outside of your arguments should you wish to make valid points, which you so far do not have. AND! Who said China coming out of the slumps means it's heading for the top? I've heard of optimism, but spare me.

JBStone1981
JBStone1981

@Heavenly_King @SmashBrawlerBoy Wrong. China is increasingly learning English, and it will continue that way. It is the most versatile language in the world, and is only growing in popularity. It will be the language of international business for the next century or more, even after China becomes the top economic power. They're not learning English for no reason, genius. 

Heavenly_King
Heavenly_King

@SmashBrawlerBoy The fact the China is becoming THE world power nation in the world, actually means that USA citizens will have to learn speak Chinese and not the other way around.