PlayStation head honcho Jim Ryan has teased more surprises to come for the PlayStation 5, specifically with the user experience – the home screen, share features and the like.
“We haven’t shown yet any of the user experience of the PS5, and there’s some really cool stuff to come on that,” he told GI.Biz. “Within that, as the PS5 feature set becomes more sticky, and the way people make games are becoming more clever, more interesting… there will be opportunities for greater engagement, and greater time spent on the platform.”
One of the biggest changes in the new console is the replacement to the DualShock 4’s Share button. Now marked with an ‘upward honk’ – a fan on three short lines that are about as abstract as icons on game controllers can get – this is now the “Create” button. You could argue that the Share button has already become as much about creation as it is sharing. Released in April 2014, half a year after the PS4 came out, SHAREfactory would let you take video clips and photos captured on the console, cut them together, add filters, transitions, music and more, and then upload your creation online. It’s an additional piece of software that lives separately to the Share button on PS4, but fold that into what the new Create button offers as standard, and suddenly the meaning of the button has been amplified.
Similarly, developers have also adapted to take advantage of what the Share button offered, integrating photo modes into their games that let you freeze the game, position the camera, play with lighting effects, focus, aperture and even character positioning and facial expressions. To say that photo modes have been insanely popular is an understatement, but they’re rarely integrated into games on day one. Whether it was inFamous: Second Son, Horizon Zero Dawn, Death Stranding or God of War, most of Sony’s first party studios have patched in photo modes as a secondary consideration months after release.
It’s also possible that streaming will get a boost. At present when you stream you have to use the standard PlayStation blue layout, its very static and archaic compared to what you can see on Twitch these days, they have fancy overlays, notifications popping up, and all sorts of extra features.
Hopefully we will not have to wait long to see what Sony have created themselves.