Sony opened the conference by finally letting fans see what the new console will look like. The price announcement was later made following a strong showing of both multi-platform and exclusive titles, including Killzone: Shadow Fall, Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag, Transistor, the newly-renamed Final Fantasy XV and Kingdom Hearts III.
Sony also spent some time highlighting its growing partnerships with indie developers, showing off PlayStation Network versions of a new Oddworld: Abe’s Odyssey remake and PC title Octodad.
Following up on fan requests, the company addressed how PlayStation Plus would work on the new console, confirming that the same subscription will carry across the PS3, PS4 and PlayStation Vita platforms.
Additionally, those subscribed at the launch of the new system will receive a free game in the form of DriveClub: Plus Edition. Sony also touted enhancements coming to the service, such as cloud-based PS3 gaming, launching next year.
One downside to the enhanced PlayStation Plus service is its requirement for online play on the PS4, though this doesn’t seem to affect the usability of other previously-free features, like Netflix app-support.
However, for many, the highlight of the conference was Sony’s clear and concise explanation of how used-games will function on the new console: exactly as they do now. Jack Tretton, CEO of SCEA, said:
“We believe in the model that people embrace today with PlayStation 3 and continue to demand. We just heard you there. When a gamer buys a PS4 disc, they have the rights to the game, they can trade in the game at retail, sell it to another person, lend it to another friend or keep it forever.”
To further emphasise their point, Sony uploaded a humorous “instructional video” to YouTube around the time of the announcement, embedded below.
The PlayStation 4 wasn’t given a firm release date, though it is expected to be available this holiday season, with pre-orders already available at major retailers such as Amazon.