Sony have, in the last few hours, unveiled the long awaited successor the the PSP. Codenamed Playstation NGP, or Next Generation Portable, the device resembles the PSP Go but packs some seriously impressive hardware under the hood.
The device will feature a 5″ OLED screen with front and rear facing cameras and touchscreen, with dual analog sticks. That’s proper dual analog sticks, not just the nub style analog controller from the original PSP. It also includes in-built GPS and gyroscope functionality.
Sony demonstrated Uncharted 2 being played on the device, allowing Drake to be controlled by gyroscope or touchscreen, The GPS functionality will be able to search for games being played in your local area, which could be great for finding gaming partners. The console also features a new online gaming service called LiveArena.
Graphically, it is said to be an a par with the PS3, with the only difference being in it’s ability to handle geometry processing. Details on how the games will be delivered is yet to be confirmed, although the device does feature in-built flash memory and 3G connectivity, so it seems likely that a digital distribution model similar to the PSP Go will be used, although I think it would be an unusual move not to provide any physical game media at all. Gamers didn’t respond well to the PSP Go, even after price drops and free game offers. I think gamers just like physical media. More on the game delivery method as we get it.
Update: Since posting, it has been confirmed that the new device will use flash memory cards as it’s storage medium. Fantastic move by Sony.
Hideo Kojima was present at the unveiling and announced he is working on a new game that will be available both on PS3 and NGP. It will be announced formally at E3. Other games confirmed for NGP release include Little Big Planet, Wipeout, Killzone and, no surprise to anyone, Call of Duty.
It all sounds really quite exciting so far, but there is still plenty to be announced. Stay tuned for updates!