27 Jan

Sony’s Playstation Meeting 2011 just ended, the company finally unveiling the worst-kept-secret-since-the-PSPGo!, the PSP2. Temporarily dubbed “NGP” or “Next Generation Portable”, the handheld features a 5-in. OLED screen, two touch screen panels and cameras (1 front, 1 rear), a GPS, six motion sensors (including Sixaxis and some of Move’s components), a built-in microphone, 3G functionality and – much to Elder-Geek’s applause – two “Micro-analog sticks”. Said nubs/sticks are above the d-pad and face buttons, with the system running at 960×544 resolution.

Demoed for the system were new iterations of Uncharted and Dynasty Warriors, with real-time rendering of trailers for Yakuza: Of the End, Unreal Engine 3, Metal Gear Solid 4 and Monster Hunter. A Call of Duty title was also announced for the system, with no other information given. Many other new and old first-party titles were featured in trailers (Hot Shots Golf, Little Deviants, Gravity Daze, Killzone, Reality Fighters, Smart As, Broken, LittleBigPlanet, WipEout, and Resistance) with third-party developers such as Hideo Kojima (Kojima Productions), Tim Sweeney (Epic Games), Jun Takeuchi (Capcom), Toshihiro Nagoshi (Sega) and Akihiro Suzuki (Tecmo Koei) promising new titles for the “NGP” at later dates.

In terms of other system specifications, the GUI for the “NGP” is a lobby dubbed “Live Area,” in which other features like the Playstation Store are accessed via bubbled buttons. The “NGP” also features “Location Based Gaming”, which keeps track of where you have walked, and the most popular and played games in your neighborhod with live updates. Also confirmed was the dissolution of the Universal Media Disc (UMD) format, with games now shipping on memory/flash cards (available in black, white, and silver).

No pricing details were announced, but the “NGP” is expected for a Holiday release this year, so expect more information at both E3 and Tokyo Game Show. For more immediate details on the system and the event that announced it, check out Elder-Geek’s LiveBlog of the event.

7 thoughts on “PSP2 Unveiled”

  1. Wish Sony would have given a pricing for the system, how much memory it will hold, and the battery life, but this is still a work in progress, so things can change. I was hoping more for a slider unit, to keep the system a little bit more portable, so you could feasibly put it in a pocket, but oh well (probably gonna be the 4th iteration of the hardware).

    I support the lack of UMDs as they take up space, use quite a bit of battery, and have longer load times than flash cards (don’t know why Sony didn’t just do that to begin with). I wonder what Sony is gonna do with being able to play the older PSP games. I know SE didn’t want some games to be downloaded, so that means PSPgo users were out of luck with some games. If they release a conversion unit, I would go out and buy a bunch of cheap used games and convert them so I would have something to play at launch (launches of most platforms don’t have a lot of good titles right out of the gate).

    Well we will most likely get a pricing and ship date at E3 as Sony will probably release the PSP2 in October or November (like with the PSP), as they said by the end of the year.

  2. SixAxis, GPS, and shitty low-res cameras (most likely)? My prayers have been answered!

    But seriously, this thing is already doomed. The two analog sticks are definitely a bonus – on the condition that they function better than the analog “nub” on the current PSP. I think we’ll see some good games which utilize the new hardware well, but this isn’t going to make any sort of dent in Nintendo’s handheld sales.

    1. The Nubs should be better as you can see that they are much taller than the PSP’s one nub, and they are recessed in the PSP/NGP (pick a name already Sony). I wish the 3DS had another slider as well, cause that would make adventure and shooters that much more playable, especially with camera adjustments.

      The system isn’t entirely doomed, but Sony is going to have some issues:
      1. We do not have an official pricing for all the SKUs of the new device. This includes the wi-fi only, and different 3G SKUs (reports going around about this stuff). Also we don’t know who will be providing the 3G and what the price will be, but all SKUs will have wi-fi.
      2. No confirmed release date beyond “Late 2011.” This is not good, as the 3DS will be out for at least 6 months and will have a sizable library of games for it already.
      3. No information about what launch titles will be for the system, or what kind of backwards compatibility the system will have. I know that the PSN store will be there, but what about all of those UMDs just floating around there (promised conversion unit that will not happen).
      4. Games will probably cost anywhere from $39.99-59.99. This comes from a higher development cost, but for a handheld, anything over $45 is really an absurd price for a portable game.

      Sony should have given as much details as possible to make people more excited. Well here is to waiting until E3 for the official launch date and pricing scheme.

  3. I wouldn’t say it was the worst kept secret. The PSP phone is definitely the worst kept secret. The PSP2 totally surprised me. Well the details surprised me, of course they were going to make another PSP. No screen shots of this thing were leaked prior to the announcement.

    I admit I am intrigued about the device. There’s a lot of potential here. However, I’m just waiting for the “$599.99!!” moment to happen. There’s no way this thing is going to be affordable.

    1. I think that the PSPgo was probably worse than the PSPhone as people thought the Go was going to be the PSP2.

      I am too waiting for that horrendous price tag. But if Sony really wants to compete with Nintendo, they need to keep the PSP2 around $300, and going no higher than $350, especially since the device will be coming out way after the 3DS is launched.

  4. Is it just me or does that thing have to much stuff on it? I mean a touchscreen, a touchpad at the back AND motion controls? What ever happened to simple is better, developers will have so many control options they won’t know what do do with half of them.

    1. It does have too much, and that is why it will be pricey. That touch screen on the back is not necessary at all, and should not be there. The last thing I want in my Uncharted game is to climb a cliff using that touch screen on the back.

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