Sony’s new PlayGo system will allow PS4 games to be played well before the hefty download has finished, with Killzone Shadow Fall ready to play after just 7.5GB of the 39.7GB download is complete – that’s less than 20% of the total file size.
The reason it’s around 40GB is because, well, it’s a next generation title, and that means next-gen textures: “The bulk of it is textures,” Michiel van der Leeuw told Eurogamer, continuing “”I think we’re probably a lot larger than the other cross-generation games, because we have no assets that have been made to a lower spec.”
He also says that due to the more open nature of the game, the surface area is five to ten times bigger than that of Killzone 3. This file size is after optimisation too – there’s been a lot of compression, as even Killzone 3 was bigger at 41.5GB on Blu-ray, due to duplicate textures and large video files in a multitude of languages.
If they had taken that approach with Shadow Fall, then the file size would have been colossal. “I think at some point the disc image that we were generating was around 180 gigs,” said van der Leeuw, revealing that “if we would have put all the levels in, which we didn’t, because then the disc image generator broke, it would have been around 290 gigs of data.”
So, it’s actually pretty compressed then. As for the 7.5GB you have to download to play, with the second level downloading in the background while you play the first and so on, but van der Leeuw still admits the initial chunk is “quite big” so future games could perhaps be even more streamlined.
They’ve removed quite a lot of the initial splash screens, negotiating with Dolby and Havok to make the experience as fast as possible once you have downloaded it. I can imagine this all being quite a task to develop, and we’ll see just how well it works in action when the game launches alongside the PS4 on November 29th.