Week Owning a PS4 – Review
Last week I treated myself to a new gen console. It was a choice between the Xbox One or the PS4. Looking at the options and the hardware included it was easy for me to make my decision. The PS4 boasted better hardware and was 100 pounds cheaper than it’s competitor. With that in mind I bought the Killzone PS4 bundle. This is my first weeks experience with the new console.
Unboxing: I was surprised at how small the actual box was which it came in. It was packaged orderly with the console taking up the majority of the box and the cables /accessories were placed down the right hand side neatly tucked away underneath the interior packaging. The rear of the console boasted the typical connections you would expect, an HDMI socket, power and Auxillary socket for if you have purchased the Eyetoy accessory. With the cables connected up I turned on the console and was welcomed to the PS4 setup wizard.
GUI: The menu system is very familiar to that what I remember from the PS3 and the PSP. The majority of the apps / features you’re going to select run across the top. This is where you’re going to find the party chat functions and access to your games / content. When you select a game for example the menu system changes to content about game. This content can range from your friends activity in regards to what they have been doing on this game (as in they might have shared a video about them playing this game) to finding the online game manual. The layout is sleek yet simple to use. I must admit it did take me about an hour to get used to the way the menu behaved and how to use it effectively – the best thing to remember was if you ever got lost hitting the PS button on the controller was usually enough to get you back to where you wanted to go.
Friends system: The friend system has been improved from my days gaming on the PS3. It’s now easier to join party chat with your friends as Sony have now included this as one of the integral reasons to have a Playstation+ account. Sony have took it a step further to keep in touch / keep track of your friends by offering you the function to request your online friends real name as opposed to just seeing their Alias. This is a great feature making it easier to differentiate from whom are your real-life friends and your online counter parts. So far it’s been good fun talking to my friends as opposed to talking to randomers in games lobby, for me I’d rather just turn on a party chat so then I didn’t have to listen them he he.
Content Sharing: One of the key features of this console generation is the ability to share you moments of glory with your friends. I’ve already took advantage of this showing my great feats to my friends which will show up in their news feed on Facebook. The method to share content with your friends is extremely simple, depending on whether you press or hold the Share button on the PS4 controller will either take a screenshot of whatever you’ve got on screen or tell the PS4 to start recording a movie from that moment in time. I would like to see Sony make better use of this in the future by offering other services I can share my content with; Especially making it easy for me to upload my Movies / Pictures to an online storage service instead.
Web browser: The web-browser on the PS3 to be fair was dire. It was a miracle if it ever worked for anything you wanted it to. Watching Youtube videos was pretty much a No-Go. I’m glad to see Sony have addressed this for the New Console. Pages load fast and are rendered as you’d expect. It’s also good to see that Youtube now works fine, albeit it doesn’t like going into fullscreen mode – this can be a little glitchy but it works enough for me to put up with it. Another great feature of the web browser is that you can use this whilst you’re also playing a game. It can come in really handy if you need to read up on a particular part of the game without needing to exit – well done Sony!
PSN Store: The Playstation store hasn’t changed much from its incarnation on the PS3 to the PS4. Content is easy enough to find but I do have a few gripes with it. The store is plastered everywhere for you to become a Playstation+ member. Annoyingly they tell you the benefits of being a member but they don’t really give you much reward for being one. The only free game on their at the time of writing was Outlast. Granted the console is only young and there wouldn’t naturally be much, but I was expecting more content than this. My second gripe is the price of the games. Annoyingly you can get most of the games a lot cheaper by buying the physical versions from your local retailer as opposed to paying £55 ($92) a game! I will be keeping my eye for retailers in the future for offers as opposed to buying from the PSN store.
DLNA Support: This is one of the key features that the PS3 had over the Xbox360, the ability to stream your content from media devices on your Local network. I was quite disappointed that I couldn’t share content to and from my Sony Experia phone to the PS4. I would have liked to been able to download the Screenshots I’ve taken on the PS4 straight to my phone, but alas no feature exists as of yet.
Games: I’ll be writing about these in the near future – Stay Tuned!!
Conclusion: I’m happy with my purchase and will continue to write about my experiences as I go on. Currently I have been playing Killzone, Knack, Rayman and Fifa14 – more on this soon.