PlayStation Now streams PlayStation games to PS4, Vita, PS3, tablets and smartphones - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 11:37 AM - Thread Starter
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http://www.engadget.com/2014/01/07/sony-reveals-playstation-now-gaikai/?ncid=rss_truncated
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Sony has just announced PlayStation Now, a new service for PS4, Vita, PS3, tablets, smartphones and Bravia TVs based on its acquisition of streaming outfit Gaikai. It represents a new subscription model for PlayStation users, and will kick off with a limited beta on PS3 starting later in January, with a wider US release slated for this summer. Games can be rented by the title or subscription and will support PSN features like multi-player, online, trophies and messages, even when you're on the road. During his CES 2014 keynote, Sony chief Kaz Hirai said that it'll "enable streaming across your smartphone, Vita, tablet and PS4 wherever, whenever," even at the same time. To enable that, PS Now is tied to a brand new cloud service, also just announced. There's no more details for now, but Sony will be showing off the tech here at CES 2014, so stay tuned for more details.


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post #2 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 12:47 PM
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The Verge has a brief hands-on report:
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Sony has finally spilled the details on its Gaikai-powered streaming service PlayStation Now, and we wasted no time in giving it a try. PlayStation Now lets owners of Sony hardware (including PS4, PS3, Vita, and Bravia TVs) stream some of the company's greatest games — all from the cloud. The demo at Sony's CES show booth features four titles, including The Last of Us, God of War: Ascension, Beyond: Two Souls, and Puppeteer. All running on a Bravia HDTV, and all running without a PlayStation 3 anywhere in sight. For our demo, we first booted up God of War. The game's loading time left a bit to be desired, but once it was running, things went on without a hitch. Yes, there's a slightly perceptible lag between button presses and the corresponding action onscreen, but we still managed to slay numerous enemies in God of War's brutal style without it being a problem.

The Last of Us was just as impressive. In terms of graphics, the experience isn't perfectly on par with what you'd get from a PS3, but Sony emphasized that everything will depend on your bandwidth. When you start PlayStation Now, it will perform a connection check and warn you if your session will be hampered by slow data speeds. We noticed some visual artifacts on screen, but the opportunity to play fully fledged PS3 game on a TV screen sans any console should make up for that in the minds of many. And it delivers at least some form of backwards compatibility to PS4 owners. We can't wait to spend more time with PlayStation Now in the weeks and months to come.
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post #3 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 12:49 PM - Thread Starter
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"Yes, there's a slightly perceptible lag between button presses and the corresponding action onscreen, but we still managed to slay numerous enemies in God of War's brutal style without it being a problem."

This is what I would be concerned with.. I will give it a shot but I want responsive controls. I'm keeping my PS3 anyways but would be nice to play some older PS2/PS1 games.
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post #4 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 01:12 PM
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Here we go, like netflix for games. Getting the PlayStation library running on everything without the need of a console is more than I was expecting from this service. I figured it would be tied to a PS3 or 4 for processing help at the receiving end, or at least for controller interface. How did they get the controllers working on a TV without a console attached? Just one of many details that I'm interested in.

Subscription pricing and features will be the big deal. Can't see it being unlimited streaming for all titles, but maybe unlimited for x number of titles? Wonder how one gets into the beta...

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post #5 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 02:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Crash44 View Post

How did they get the controllers working on a TV without a console attached?

I can't speak for all TV's, but the Panasonic plasmas have Bluetooth, and there's a game controller available for the set from Panasonic. I don't know if the DualShock will connect to the set, haven't tried. Don't know either if the Panasonic controller will work with these games... still a lot to be seen.
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post #6 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 02:45 PM
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Hands on with PlayStation Now
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There's also no official game lineup announced yet, although Sony was demoing "The Last of Us," "God of War: Ascension," "Puppeteer," and "Beyond: Two Souls" at its booth. Sony also wasn't ready to announced whether you'll need a PlayStation Plus account to access PlayStation Now.

Sony had the PlayStation Now service working at its booth on a Sony Bravia TV and Vita, and I had some hands-on time playing "The Last of Us" and "God of War: Ascension." Overall, latency was pretty good. Gameplay for the most part felt responsive, with only a few occasions where I noticed some slight lag.

There's much more at the link.

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How did they get the controllers working on a TV without a console attached?

I can't speak for all TV's, but the Panasonic plasmas have Bluetooth, and there's a game controller available for the set from Panasonic. I don't know if the DualShock will connect to the set, haven't tried. Don't know either if the Panasonic controller will work with these games... still a lot to be seen.

Didn't cross my mind that newer TV's have Bluetooth, just like everything else seems to. Makes perfect sense.

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post #7 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 02:47 PM
 
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There's your Titanfall killer!

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On a serious note, it seems like a smart move to me, especially with legacy PS1 and PS2 titles.

Much of the mobile market is just recycling NES-PS2 era style games with new paint. Prior generation mechanics, AI, and simple input designs are prime to throw up on tablets, small screens, and mobile phones. Sonys even been thinking of ways to give them new paint themselves, or introduce new gameplay or inputs (via a recent patent).

They should by all means continue to work on local emulation where possible, but options are great.
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post #8 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 02:54 PM
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This seems like it is going to have a long maturity phase. Seems like at launch it seems like it will still be in beta. Nice that PS3 titles are prioritized, but stating that they want to offer PS4 titles makes me wonder if certain games (newer) will require a PS4. Imagine playing Uncharted 4 on your PS2?!!! Lol, not likely, but I sense the requirements/restrictions are going to be pretty high.

http://www.dualshockers.com/2014/01/07/heres-how-god-of-war-ascension-looks-on-playstation-now/

video of GoW:A. Looks good, but I am wondering if the sample is skewed as likely this is all on a LAN.

Wonder if Microsoft will let Sony rent some of their 300k gaming servers tongue.gif (j/k)

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post #9 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 03:00 PM
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HHHHmmmmm so my smart tv can play console games w/out a console??? Thats just wild, definately gonna have to keep this on the radar!

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post #10 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 03:13 PM
 
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If I was Sony I'd offer titles al la carte for PSPlus members with very low digital license prices, while for everyone else you pay for it as different tiered service.

I do worry about the ISPs though and their inability to keep up (or rather their salivating on overcharging per bit). I wonder what sort of data use were talking about there.

Better get used to it though, as the Netflix CEO recently said their 4K will be running 15Mbps, and then let is slip that a 50Bbps should be good enough. Better hope your ISP doesn't rain on your cloud!
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post #11 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 04:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freemeat View Post

"Yes, there's a slightly perceptible lag between button presses and the corresponding action onscreen, but we still managed to slay numerous enemies in God of War's brutal style without it being a problem."

This is what I would be concerned with.. I will give it a shot but I want responsive controls. I'm keeping my PS3 anyways but would be nice to play some older PS2/PS1 games.
It's pretty much impossible to have streamed games with no lag, so expectations should never be at that level. For example, the experience (not controls) when playing a fighting game or shooter online can never be as smooth as offline, local play.

If Gaikai tech feels as good as PS4's Remote Play or better, then it is in good shape. For RP I can feel lag most in pure action titles like Resogun, but it holds up well when playing something that doesn't require pixel-perfect precision.

However, unlike RP I hope we aren't restricted to 30 fps while streaming, even though 60 fps wasn't hit often enough in previous generations to matter as much.

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post #12 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 04:08 PM
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No word on pricing? I'd guess it will be a couple bucks a game. It shouldn't be as costly as a port to PSN but then again...once a cost is established it tends to stay.

This is new ground for anybody so yea we will be beta testing it for a while.
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post #13 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 04:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes, expectations aren't for perfect mimicking which is probably why I'd only use for select games. I would love to beta test of course and find out for myself how it feels. I just hate latency in general.
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post #14 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 04:45 PM
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No word on pricing? I'd guess it will be a couple bucks a game. It shouldn't be as costly as a port to PSN but then again...once a cost is established it tends to stay.

This is new ground for anybody so yea we will be beta testing it for a while.

From what I read, Sony will survey those who participate in the beta this month. Some postings are talking about a single monthly charge that grants access to all their services (?), which is super confusing because they are discussing Planetside 2 and EQ Next...I am getting a feeling Sony is looking to make this a 1 title rental at a time with a monthly sub.

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post #15 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 06:27 PM
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So I can pay a monthly fee to play laggy, sub-par versions of old games? Sign me up! rolleyes.gif

I get the nostalgic aspect of backwards compatibility (which this is loosely a form of), but how many people actually go back and play their old catalog of games? I fired up my old Neo Geo the other day to see if it still worked. Man, 20+ year old hardware was not meant to be played on a 75" TV. smile.gif I should have left those experiences in the recesses of my memory.
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post #16 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 08:20 PM
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If the Neo Geo looked awful, it was because your tv's scaling chip was murdering the picture. Fire up something like Shock Troopers off PSN on the PS3 and the picture is going to be beautiful.

Plenty of people love classic gaming. The thousands of sites around the internet, long established hobbyist emulation on a variety of platforms, people developing new products for classic systems, and the thousands of classic gaming compilations, rereleases, and digital downloads should all attest that the popularity is there.

But this streaming service will never take off. Sony will let it wither on the vine and most consumers will end up turned off by less than desirable quality. Their efforts would've been much better spent towards emulation. The money they threw away buying this company would've likely provided the PS4 with full compatibility with Sony's past three consoles (and with downloads for both handhelds) with a large chunk of change to spare.
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post #17 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 08:46 PM
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This service certainly might fail, but I doubt it'll be because Sony "let it wither on the vine." They spent $380 million buying Gaikai; whether or not that was a smart decision, they are going to work hard to recoup that investment.
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post #18 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 08:50 PM
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Unless consumers by a small miracle fall in love with it, I don't see Sony sticking with this for the long haul by increasing its game lineup. It will stagnate as they lose interest and those that actually are taking heavy advantage of it will be turned off when the flow of additions slows and then stops. I wager that Sony will stick to it about as well as they did with their PS/PS2 Classics programs and at least those didn't have 1 arm tied behind their back from the get go like they are with the technical hurdles they're facing with this.

It might be a bet on the future of gaming, but its role on the PS4 is going to be a limited one I suspect.
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post #19 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 09:41 PM
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Depending on what the service offers in terms of titles I think it might do well. There are plenty of PS3 games I wanted to play but never bought, and I'm not planning on expanding my PS3 library any further, so a streaming rental might just be the trick. The key is going to be price and performance. If both are solid then streaming should take off. Think of Plus as it is now, except you get to choose what you want to play for a fee instead of what they give you. Could do well if handled right.

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post #20 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 09:53 PM
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A lot will depend on cost and an equal amount will depend on experience. Too much lag on a crappy DSL line or 3G connection will kill it. But like Netflix it takes someone to try.
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post #21 of 137 Old 01-07-2014, 09:56 PM
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Hopefully it does succeed. Anything that increases the exposure of classic gaming and makes it more accessible is good in my book. I'm just skeptical that it's going to succeed since I think that the deck is stacked against it.
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post #22 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 12:39 AM
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Forbes reports that GameStop shares fell after the Playstation Now announcement. I think that's because investors see video-game streaming as a threat to GameStop in the way that Netflix was to Blockbuster.

Over the long-term, it's not about providing access to classic games; it's about being ready for the day that consoles go away altogether. At some point, a smart TV will be all most people need; the average customer won't have a Blu-Ray player or a video-game console, because all the content they want will be streamed. That's not going to happen soon, and there will always be holdouts; videophiles who want the very best picture, hardcore gamers who want the minimum lag. But that's the direction the wind is blowing, and if Sony can establish themselves early, that will be worth $380 million.
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post #23 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 01:54 AM
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Pretty much. i'm not happy about streaming taking over as the standard, but that looks like where its going. sony is smart by getting a jump on it, and if they can make the tech work for them, it could turn out to be something great.....if they can get the pricing right.

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post #24 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 07:38 AM
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Sign up for the PlayStation Now beta at the link!

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post #25 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 08:33 AM
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Sign up for the PlayStation Now beta at the link!

are you sure that is for the beta? did i miss it in the description.. because it sounds like it is just to get updates..
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post #26 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 08:52 AM
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I absolutely despise the move towards convenience over quality (mp3 vs CD/SACD, streaming video vs blu-ray, etc). I don't mind watching a random horror flick or documentary on streaming video, but I'm not going to watch the latest blockbusters over streaming. The inconsistent video quality and lossy audio is just a huge turn-off for me. I suppose I represent the minority, since everything is moving in this direction.

Until we all have Gigabit internet connections, I don't see streaming as a viable alternative for the few of us who actually care about quality. I have decent internet at home (consistently 15 to 20 Mb down), and Netflix/Amazon streaming quality is very inconsistent. I can't imagine how horrible it is for people with < 5 Mb. I don't expect game streaming to be any more consistent.
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post #27 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 08:54 AM
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this is just not going to work well in Canada, what with our low caps and high costs for internet frown.gif but i dont think SOny is thinking about Canada when they so their plans -- we frequently get over looked.

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post #28 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 08:55 AM
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post #29 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crash44 View Post

Depending on what the service offers in terms of titles I think it might do well. There are plenty of PS3 games I wanted to play but never bought, and I'm not planning on expanding my PS3 library any further, so a streaming rental might just be the trick. The key is going to be price and performance. If both are solid then streaming should take off. Think of Plus as it is now, except you get to choose what you want to play for a fee instead of what they give you. Could do well if handled right.

Agreed. There are plenty of games I'd play for a low fee. These are games I wouldn't bother buying or renting but if I could take them for a spin I might. Really surprised Sony is offering this on other platforms, seems having a PS3, PS4, or Vita would be a requirement at least for the controller part. I don't see this working on an iPad for example. And yeah the lag is elephant in the room. Streaming (even in HD) works fine because you can buffer a few minutes worth of video, but in game split second timing is required. Thus any lag is going to kill the experience. However online gaming works now and its pretty seamless. Gran Turismo lags, but Burnout Paradise was pretty smooth, those are really the only two games I've played online, just not into FPS at all.

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post #30 of 137 Old 01-08-2014, 11:12 AM
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If anyone reading this thread decides to check out PS3Trophies.org today as a result, note that the site seems to be down at the moment, which is an extremely rare occurrence in my experience, and I've been a regular for over four years.
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