EA Finds It 'Hard To Conceive What You Would Do On A PlayStation 4'

Electronic Arts, like Sony and Microsoft, seem perfectly content to ride out the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 for as long as possible, downplaying the need for a next generation of consoles any time soon. Why would you even need one, wonders EA's Frank Gibeau?

Gibeau tells CVG that "It's hard for me to conceive what you would do on a PlayStation 4. The displays are already 1080p, you're already connected to the internet... You could make it faster, you could have more polys and you could up the graphics a little bit... but at what cost?"

Certainly at great cost to publishers like EA and the people who make video game console hardware, as well as to consumers. Gibeau argues that "customers are happy," just like EA, with their current hardware, now five or more years old.

"The way the business used to run where you had these big console transitions just isn't happening anymore," Gibeau says, in part thanks to internet-connected consoles.

So, Frank and EA may sound tapped out on next-gen hardware ideas, but maybe you have some brighter ones about what the next PlayStation and Xbox should be capable of doing? Your R&D is welcome in the comments, folks.

EA: What would PlayStation 4 even do? [CVG]

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    he is a tad bias though because it would mean his install bases would drastically decrease

    How about actual 1080p rendering rather than 720p rendering upscaled to 1080p.

    The Playstation 4 doesn't have to be innovative, it just has to be able to make games look better/play better.

      Don't forget the jump from 30fps to 60fps!

        I think that comes under look better/play better ;)

        EA are ignorant if they think that consoles don't need to get more powerful... then again EA are a console publisher, they couldn't give two hoots about PC (with hopefully the exception of DICE and BF3).

          I think its leading back to where it will cost far too much money to produce games for the next gen.

          Plus 720p to 1080p isnt really a that big of a deal when your sitting 3-4m away from the tv on your couch.

          I would like new features like tessalition to be implemented but can easily live without it if game development times increase and costs increase.

      yeah actual 1080p.

      A computer from 10 years ago can do 1080p in the way consoles currently do.

    A lot of people said the same about the PS2. Comes down to they will release a new one when there is technology that warrants it.

    Having a more powerful console would do more than just make things look prettier. You can utilise it to try new effects, new kinds of games, make it true 1080p, bigger multiplayer games, faster load times, more efficient storage, etc. You could bring everyone together and offer mouse and keyboard support as well as motion control so you could have every conceivable way to interact on the one console.

    There's room for improvement, but I think with this generation the number of games available for each platform is immense making a new generation does pose some questions. The ps3 cost $1000 on release, what would a new generation cost?

    I see his point, but they should start making plans at least.

      no one wants a mouse and keyboard on console, apart from pc gamers.
      i am both a pc gamer and an xbox gamer, theres games that id rather get on pc and vice versa. but what makes gaming on my xbox great and fun is its casualness. i can kick back on a couch with my controller. you just cant do that with a keyboard + mouse.

      however i would love support from cross platform play. it would be possible if players have a choice to play only with others on the same platform, or crossplatform.

    LoL. As people have said graphics and framerate are good reasons to go to the next gen, also better physics and larger worlds! I mean I am pretty happy that my 360 has had such a long cycle but I'd honestly be pretty excited about seeing the next gen coming along. 5 years of tech improvements will provide a massive increase in graphics, and hey if we're "happy" now then you can blow us all the hell away with the increase in graphics and shiz. I know I still think the 360 does frakkin' excellent graphics but that doesn't mean I don't dream of the craziness next gen could provide!

    Please make sure the next gen is FULLY backwards compatible though, it sucks having to check a list to see if specific games will play on new hardware.

    you hear that. . . that's the sound of PC gamers crying quietly. . .

      let me elaborate on my trollish comment.

      PC gamers know they're gonna get gypped when its not too far off the mark to say that all major gaming titles are developed for consoles initially then ported to PC's. Undeniably one of the corner stones of the PC gaming market is that the market is in a state of continuous evolution and hardware is obsolete before its even released. You now have one the biggest developers in the world undermine this by saying that 5 year old pieces of tech are sufficient enough for today's market, effectively rendering the entire PC gaming arms race irrelevant.

        I had this exact same feeling when I read the article. YAY! Let's keep crippling the games industry by having consoles bog it down with ancient hardware.

          Exactly, it pisses me off that games producers have the gall to tell us that technology from 5 years is fine to base a new supposedly "cutting edge" game on. Fuck off. It's any wonder people with consoles are lining up to sink the boot into EA regarding BF3's ability to only have 32 player multiplayer capability. I for one have always believed that FPS's have no place on a console anyways, because no matter how good you think you are with a controller, an amature with a keyboard and mouse is going to kick your ass, no questions or 2 ways about it. It's really sad to see the constant stream of "console ports" to PC's which absolutely annihilate anything even remotely game related for graphics quality, customizability, and re-playability due to Mod communities. If EA isn't paying attention to THAT fact, we might all be fucked.

    As others have said. A good place to start is actual 1080p and achieving 60fps.

      60fps actually looks worse than 30fps. So that isn't a very smart goal. Maintaining 30fps without dips is a better goal. 30fps tends to look more cinematic and better.

        60fps actually looks worse does it? Well you "learn" something new everyday I guess.

          Believe it or not, there is some truth to this. Daytime TV is in sixty frames, and it actually makes things look worse.

          However, in the case of gaming, 60 frames tends to be preferable, as it allows for smoother movement, which is critical for snap aiming and large sprawling levels.

            I know in film and televison framerate is a different ballgame which I is why I was somewhat perplexed by his statement since the topic is videogames. :P

              Yup especially when

              some content is only filmed at 30FPS, running it at 60FPS is not the brightest move.

              Broadcast TV is generally downscaled for broadcast anyway. Usually to 720p and then has the TV upscale it again. To save on transmission power/bandwidth.

              Unless your watching from a direct source(dvd/bluray) there's really no telling what Broadcast TV is ever delivering

        my IQ just dropped reading that.

          Yeah, a lot of replies there that just make me puzzled this is how people think.

          On one hand feel like there is a need to do a short presentation for Kotaku to repost on framerate, fillrate, etc. and development cost of those - and then more importantly development cost, marketing cost and return - for software alone. Then loss-leader hardware and attach rate for consoles.

          The reality is this is a tough business, it's very competitive and a lot of money is found out what part of the audience is likely to puchase goods, and target them. Same way maths and science is used to work out what part of the audience is not going to buy, and don't target them.

          Having PC gamers protest a business that drives revenue from console and mobile sale to focus more on their PC market is like putting pressure on McDonald's to sell salad. If there is enough pressure - you will get some salad added to the menu, everyone will rejoice - but their business is still burgers, fries, drinks and ice-cream

    Graphics can definitely be improved.

    Controllers too. I don't like having a million controllers, I want a convergence of regular and motion controllers.

    Something like a PS3 controller you can separate to become 2 motion controllers.

    BLAH EA, if you didn't ignore PC gaming so much you would realize that console hardware is getting laughable at about the 6 year mark. When smart phones are getting more powerful than a gaming console, its time to upgrade.

    I've always admired EA's vision and ambition.

    Yeah, exactly. Wouldn't people have said this exact same thing in the era of N64s/Playstations, then again in Ps2/Gamcube? Of course WE can't picture how exactly the next gen will be different, just as noone could back then. But it is probably time for a change.

    I remember as a kid finding it hard to conceive how graphics could get better than the SNES. :-)

    You don't need internet faster than 56k! What would you even do with it?!

    DERP! It's called innovation asshole, get back to the drawing board.

    easy to consider - being able to properly support some of the crazy shaders for a start - tessellation will be an easy enough way to up model detail (considering any extra work required is mostly covered already doing high poly models for normal maps), along with grass/fur shaders (ie. no more scrappy hatched planes with repeated texture patches to pass as 'foliage').

    Dedicated physics support would make all those little touches standard (eg. cloth simulation in Mafia II, Batman and Mirror's Edge), as well as allowing for better destructible environments.

    And even just providing more RAM would help alleviate a lot of current issues with things like texture detail.

    If you're ever hard-pressed to consider where gaming could possibly go from here, just wait until reality catches up with some of the current pipe dreams - like a procedurally generated game with the scope and interactivity of Minecraft, the graphical complexity of Skyrim, and the world complexity of Civilization with GTA/Assassins Creed's urban interaction... and then making it drop-in multiplayer-capable. I think it might even be viable in two console generations considering what we get every time the hardware architecture changes.

    Translation - "we don't want to have to design new engines for our yearly updates".

    Frank Gibeau should have a chat with John Carmack about game development...

    I'm personally chomping at the bit to get a hold on the next generation of consoles- particularly for Nintendo. I'm so annoyed that Skyward Sword is going to be running on decade old hardware :-(

    There are two conflicting issues here:

    1. The last console generation was a bit of a bust. Whether or not the GFC was the main contributing factor, the home console market failed to expand this generation, whilst game development costs sky-rocketed. Unfortunately, the same economic conditions are in play, and I suspect the major manufacturers are hesitant to release a new product.

    2. I really can't see this generation lasting much longer. In all likelihood, the next iPad will be more powerful than the 360, and that's untenable. People won't want a dedicated gaming device that is technologically inferior to their phone.

    Anyway, my point is, this is a tough situtation for home consoles. I'm not sure how they are going to handle it.

    I want longer games with more content. But as with all moves into the next gen, they just make the graphics better and the games are still the same length. I'm dissapointed that dxhr is only 25 hrs long. I was hoping it would be longer. I got 200hrs in my first playthrough of Fallout 3.

    One thing that would be good is increased memory and power will remove the loading Times from games like deus ex where transitioning from outdoors to indoor environments could be made seamless. Also crowds in sports games could be more life like and interactive. Open world environments could be more alive with more detailed environments and people that react accordingly. They could have their own lives and routines.

    One thing that would be good is increased memory and power will remove the loading Times from games like deus ex where transitioning from outdoors to indoor environments could be made seamless. Also crowds in sports games could be more life like and interactive.
    Open world environments could be more alive with more detailed enyvironments and people that react accordingly. They could have their own lives and routines.

    He's just talking diminishing returns. It takes more and more power to get smaller and smaller improvements.

    Look at the difference between the PS1 and the PS2, it was night and day. Yet the PS2 launched at the same price the PS1 had launched.

    Come the PS3 and the difference isn't all that striking. Yes it does look better and games are bigger, but its not the same kind of jump they made from the PS1 to the PS2. And to achieve that smaller jump, they had to jack up the price considerably. By the same token, any console that is to significantly surpass the current gen would need to cost more than the PS3 costed at launch and the market may not bear it.

    That's the reason MS and Sony want to strech this gen as much as they can.

    Ninty on the other hand is playing their own game as usual, not really getting into the specs race.

      PS1: http://tinyurl.com/3ca8svn

      PS2: http://tinyurl.com/3ghu6pz

      PS3: http://tinyurl.com/3znw7fh

      PS2 to PS3 looks like a far bigger improvement to me than PS1 to PS2

        That PS1 shot does not look like it came from a PS1 at all. Its anti-aliased and ressed up

          That's definitely not the PS1 version. Maybe the PC or the Gamecube edition, but I doubt it. Here's an actual screen shot: http://www.thunderboltgames.com/s/reviews/ps/mgs_4.jpg

          Look at the character models, the changes are much, much bigger between PS1 and PS2.

            It's not the Gamecube version because that was the same engine as MGS2, as for PC that actually had a lot of graphical features removed. Only some textures were improved.

            Either way I still think the diff between PS1 and PS2 has nothing on the jump from 2 to 3.

              I think if you compared Final Fantasy VII to X, and X to XIII you'd change your mind. Keep in mind, all three were graphical wonders when released.

    This coming from the company publishing a game with 64 player MP that consoles aren't powerful enough to handle...

    I think when you get down to it, Kinect and Move are less than a year old, Sony and Microsoft are not going to bring out new hardware now rendering that technology useless, I'd pick that it will be at least 2014 before we see any new consoles from those two.

      Or they could just have the Kinect and Move work with the new consoles the way Wiimotes will work with the WiiU.

    lol EA. you're publishing Battlefield 3.

    a game which allows on computers, to have these amazing graphical renders, and up to 64 players on large scale maps.

    this cant be done on consoles because they arent powerful enough.

    to me that says well, if you made a ps4, or the next xbox, well, they should be able to do this, which developers are capable of.

    publishers dont know shit about game development, even the ones they are publishing lol.

    I remember reading a PC Powerplay article which may have been about 3dfx saying "Why would you want resolutions more than 640x480"

    Time makes fools of us all

      its true, i have a home video where im like 'check out my new widescreen monitor' its a huge fkin CRT that barely fits on the desk lol.

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