Viewers Can Influence Dead Nation During a Stream

February 28, 2014 by Staff - Leave a comment


If you caught our announcement of March’s PS+ game lineup, you might have caught a few interesting details about the special broadcast features found in the PS4’s Dead Nation: Apocalypse Edition.

Basically, if you decide to stream your Dead Nation gameplay, your viewers can do more than just sit back and watch. They’ll be able to vote on certain things that can happen in your game, and thereby alter the difficulty level. Kind viewers might choose to give you extra ammo. Not-so-kind viewers might gleefully vote to put a bunch of zombies in your path. We bet there’ll be a lot of that.

Viewers who vote will also appear in your game themselves, as named zombies.

This sounds like a really interesting way for game developers to take advantage of the PS4’s broadcasting features (and the Xbox One, once it integrates Twitch next month) in a way that doesn’t hinder the experience for players who don’t stream, but adds something special for those who do. We’ve never seen this sort of player-viewer interactivity before, and we’ll be interested in how it works out.

Check out the trailer, which includes a snippet of viewers voting during a broadcast, and let us know your thoughts.

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Voice commands possible on PS4 without camera

November 17, 2013 by Staff - Leave a comment


It turns out that you don’t necessarily need one of the new Playstation Eye cameras to use voice commands on the Playstation 4, it will quite happily do what you tell it to provided you use at least one set of the following magic words…

  1. PlayStation, go home – head back to the PS4 home screen
  2. PlayStation, take screenshot – take a screenshot
  3. PlayStation, log in – logs you in to PSN
  4. PlayStation, power, standby – enter the PS4 into standby mode
  5. PlayStation, [game name] – launch the relevant game

So there you go, it will be interesting to see if it turns out the Xbox One can also receive and respond to some voice commands with the Kinect. We haven’t heard of this being possible yet, but you never know once the device hits the general gaming public this Friday and people start exploring!

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PS4 voice commands very limited at launch

November 11, 2013 by Staff - Leave a comment


Kinect is a big feature/accessory for the Xbox One. Microsoft has been talking it up since debuting the console and even ensured that every Xbox One sold comes with one (which is possibly the reason for the price difference between the PS4 and X1). Similarly, voice commands are expected to be a big part of using the Xbox One.

The Playstation 4, on the other hand, does not come bundled with a PS4 Eye camera – it’s something you’re gonna have to buy separately. Sony also seem to be less focused on integrating the device with the console system, at least at this stage. While the Xbox One with Kinect can handle a multitude of commands, those that the PS4 and Eye camera will recognize are pretty limited.

For instance, you won’t be able to turn on or “wake” your PS4 from standby mode using voice nor will you be able to control media functions (like in Netflix). We do know however that you’ll be able to turn the console off using your voice and also launch games.

Of course it’s highly unlikely that Sony won’t improve on integration between the two via future system updates. Whether it will be able to catch up to Microsoft (and also encourage third party app vendors to make use of it too) remains to be seen.

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Sony left Eye camera out of bundle to lower price

October 9, 2013 by Staff - Leave a comment


Sony has revealed it wanted to hit the $399 price point for it’s Playstation 4 console and had to drop the PS Eye camera from the launch bundle in order to do it.

Speaking to journalists at Sony’s head office in Tokyo, SCE CEO Andy House said that while they wanted to include the Eye camera with the PS4 console, in the end the cost proved too much to keep it under the $400 mark, and so it was dropped.

Does that mean the Eye is a device that buyers of the PS4 are going to miss at launch then? Apparently not:

Certainly for the earlier part of the lifecycle, the vast majority of the audience that we speak to tells us that their primary wish is for the full controller interface and there’s not necessarily a huge emphasis being placed on camera interaction.

Console manufacturers generally lose money on each console sold (particularly at the start of the life cycle) and then make the difference up in games, accessories and subscription sales. By taking the Eye camera out of the equation, it seems that Sony was attempting to minimize its losses on the console (and of course undercut the Xbox One by $100).

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PS4 Camera to support voice commands

September 1, 2013 by Staff - 1 Comment


Most gamers know that the Kinect 2.0 on the Xbox One supports facial recognition and voice commands. Everyone must have heard the phrase “Xbox on” by now… The thing is that Sony has been pretty quiet on exactly what the new PS4 camera will be able to do, until now.

If you check out the Youtube clip below, about 5:34 in to be exact, the following text is clearly visible:

From navigational voice commands to facial recognition, the PlayStation Camera adds incredible innovation to your gaming.

[youtube id=”1HVuinq4g7A” width=”600″ height=”350″]

We think it’s pretty strange that Sony hasn’t talked about this feature, at all, until now and has actually continued to remain tight-lipped about the whole thing even with the video above being made public. That said, we fully expect some sort of big announcement in the near future.

FYI the video was taken during a presentation made at the GameStop Expo in Las Vegas this week.

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