Sony did say they were not going to talk about Neo during E3 but the BBC have managed to get Andrew House to briefly mention the console. First he reiterated the the reason for the super console being absent, that being that they wanted to make sure they had “the full range of experiences that can take advantage of it.”
The BBC then asked “Is this indicative of a new strategy for the PlayStation, that there’s going to be more heavy-duty upgrades over the course of a console’s lifecycle?”
“Well, to be very clear, the high end PS4, code-named Neo, that we are working on, is an addition to the existing lineup, not a replacement,” replied Andrew. “Perhaps we have an opportunity to move slightly away from just a static console that remains absolutely the same for a period of six, seven, eight years. And perhaps offer, in addition to the current PS4, something a little extra. Particularly, and I should stress this, in the area of graphic fidelity, and games that will essentially play an awful lot prettier than games have previously.”
At first glance nothing we did not know, but it is interesting that Andrew said that they “are working on” the Neo. The dev kit specs have been leaked, but after the announcement of the six teraflop Scorpio, could Sony be boosting the specs of Neo before the official reveal? The rumours were Neo was going to launch beside PSVR this October, but that seems unlikely now.
Microsoft have specifically stated that Scorpio will be for 4K gaming whilst the leaked specs for Neo indicated it would be unlikely that games would be 4K, just movies. Making Neo comparable to Scorpio would also be of benefit for developers, with the current specs they will have to create PS4 and Xbox One versions of games, which are pretty similar, then a Neo version and a 4K Scorpio version.
We await the official reveal of Neo with interest.
UPDATE: “You’ll have the same experience, but one will be delivered at a higher resolution, with an enhanced graphical experience, but everything else is going to be exactly as you’d expect,” said SIE Worldwide Studios Boss Shaun Layden to Time.
Interestingly, he downplayed the current rumoured power difference between the Neo and Scorpio. “Is that going to be the end-all, be-all of the gaming experience? No, I think more than anything else today, we’re seeing the power of narrative move the gaming business forward more than ever before.”