Hands on: PlayStation Now Game Streaming

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Hands on: PlayStation Now Game Streaming

PS Now

It works! That’s the biggest compliment you could pay the newly revealed PlayStation Now game streaming service formally unveiled at CES 2014. Set to roll out this summer on PS3 and PS4 — followed by PS Vita and an array of internet connected devices such as 2014 BRAVIA TVs — PS Now will enable users to stream a library of PS3 titles in real time over the internet.

Update: Want more information on PS Now? Watch these new video reports filed by PlayStation’s community blogger team straight from CES.

At the show, gaming media went hands-on with PS Now across two devices, a 2014 BRAVIA TV and a PS Vita. The test drive featured four titles — Beyond: Two Souls, God of War: Ascension, The Last of Us, and Puppeteer. And across the board, the experience was encouraging. PS Now’s advantage lies in its immediacy and access; the ability to hop easily between multiple games across a host of devices without downloading huge files or swapping Blu-ray discs represents a major evolution of the medium.

The Last of Us

On the BRAVIA, I picked up the DualShock 3 and launched into The Last of Us, Naughty Dog’s critically-acclaimed survival drama. Following a brief loading screen, I launched an early scenario set in the ruins of Boston. So far, so good: the experience looked and felt faithful to playing the game locally on a PS3. I crept through abandoned skyscrapers, evaded marauding Clickers, and engaged in a bareknuckle beatdown against a mob of Infected.

In the test demo I played on both the BRAVIA and PS Vita, gameplay latency was a non-issue. I had no trouble controlling the camera, aiming at enemies, or fending off incoming attacks. In fact, after a few minutes of play I forgot that I was “streaming a game” — I was just getting absorbed in playing The Last of Us. I also fired up Puppeteer and God of War: Ascension, and the experience was similarly convincing.

At this early stage of PS Now’s development, pixel counters and graphics aficionados might spot some minor concessions in the visual department, such as compression artifacts, consistent with high-quality internet video or gameplay streamed via PS Vita Remote Play.

And as with all bandwidth-intensive streaming content, a player’s experience with PS Now will depend on the overall quality of their broadband internet connection. The PS Now team is currently estimating that a 5 mbps connection will provide a good experience for most games, and they’ll be gathering user feedback during the closed beta before announcing more details.

There are still plenty of things we don’t know about the service that will surely be revealed as we get closer to its summer launch in the United States. But for now, as far as first impressions go, PS Now is looking promising, indeed. Sign up here for more information.

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20 Author Replies

  • What happen if you happen to lose your internet connection or lost your Wi-Fi connection while playing a streamed game?

    Would you lose your game progress if that happens?

    • Not sure on that front, but the upcoming closed beta and testing will allow the engineers to gather data and user feedback.

  • Fingers crossed on getting into the closed beta, also that I can finally get a chance to play Rogue Galaxy.

  • I’m excited to see what this service is going to have to offer. I’ve been told I need to play Puppeteer…so that’s a good start!

  • Just make it so our previously purchased digital games are automatically unlocked for play on the service and we’re golden. That would give Sony a huge leg up over Microsoft in the backwards compatibility department.

    Come on guys, this NEEDS to happen. It’s not like you don’t have a record of what we’ve bought. Our PSN accounts take care of that easily enough.

  • This is very cool, amazing times ahead for gamers.

  • please make this for Canada to because ive been a plus since the beging I have over 6 thosion games ive collected but that’s on the old ps3 I had before I sold it because I was upset because it was 80gb and when I downloaded god of war it toke more then I had because of ps3 updates so I now have a ps4 after selling my ps3 wii u and ps vita and paying the diffence and id like to at lease play my ps3 games ps one on my ps4 but I don’t live in usa

  • I think this is a good option but I still prefer to have the physical disc over playstation now for plenty of reasons. Price? Physical disc is cheaper. PS3 games are real cheap nowadays when they are on sale or even on ebay. I would say like 99% of the time, the digital versions cost more and I believe the streaming games would be similar. I don’t think playstation now will give better discounts. Maybe once in a while a playstation now game sale will be cheaper than disc but that would be rare. Ability to sell? Sometimes I will outplay a game or may not like a game so I would want to sell the game and recoup some money back. Already have a PS3? I have 2 PS3s with a huge library of games and I am not planning to sell them. I may buy a couple more games for the PS3 and that would be the end until I later get PS4. I don’t need to repurchase PS3 games that I already bought in the past. The playstation now is still very impressive especially since it can play on bravia tv and so many other devices. I would still prefer backward compatibility on ps4 but playstation now is still a good option for some and it is better than nothing.

  • This is very promising stuff! I’m a little weary that you guys can pull off fighting games, but I’d love to be proven wrong!

  • Can’t wait to try this!

  • Any chance of canada getting in on the beta eventually?

  • Don’t have faith sony’s network can do this..heck PSn has been having issues since ps4 launched, sorry sony you have proven over the years your network is not the best. LAg will be an issue.

  • 5 millibits/sec seems awfully slow for streaming a game. Good thing I have a 50 Megabit/sec connection!

    P.S. get your units right.

  • I am blessed with a 35 Mbps connection! Sony servers, CAN YOU KEEP UP?

  • is it the usdotplaystationdotcom/playstationnow thing to signup for the beta cuz that says for first info on playstation now nothing about beta?…

  • Very excited for this. My Vita is ready. Did I hear correctly that the multiplayer for God of War Ascension will also work?

  • Can’t wait for this! I hope it works.

    @PainOfSarrow Maybe you’re just too stupid to know. You wouldn’t be much of an idiot if you actually read it.

  • Booooo! this is not next gen tech so boooooo! PSnow how about delay station now should have been done years ago…

  • Still not buying a delaystation VITA!!

  • I’ll be able to play the old games I bought on PSN? I ask this because I bought the PS4 and gave my Ps3 gift, but there are still some games I like to play. This question was not clear to me, someone can answer me?

  • Just registered for the Closed Beta and more info! Hope i make it in to help test it out :D

  • Getting closer to ”One” Sony. I want total intergration and collaboration

  • How do we register for the Closed beta? I signed up for more info but interested in trying to get into the closed beta.

  • i cant wait for this!! Bye Bye free time Hello classic games! Registered for beta and back to my PS4!

  • Exciting possibilities and always better to have more options. I was amazed at Kaz’s announcement of new Sony products coming this year. It looked like Minority Report tech starts in 2014.

  • My AT&T U-Verse internet is only 2.6-3 Mbps speed so I can forget about this endeavor.

    I’m not sure if this is a dumb question but out of curiosity how does one control playing with a Bravia TV? You can’t just pick up a duel shock controller and aim it at the TV, can you? What kind of device is needed to register a controller? Is the technology that the general Wi-Fi signal reads a controller just by aiming at the TV?

    Enlighten me please.

  • @75

    Bravia TVs have Bluetooth support. Dualshock controllers connect via Bluetooth. You sync them once via USB, the same way you do with a PS3.

    The new 2014 sets should do it out of the box, older sets (that still have Bluetooth) might need a firmware update, but….yeah. It’ll work the same way pairing a controller does with a console.

  • I’d sign up for the beta but I’m usually not that great at giving feedback. So other people.. TAKE IT AWAY! I will reap the fruit of your labor in the end.

  • Absolutely fantastic Sony, but please still expect the use headset Sony playstation 4 in Pulse, a prediction for a Firmware? Sry My English…

  • Boo, this is insulting. The site won’t let me register because I must have 3 letters on my last name. My last name only has two letters. What kind of sick joke is this?

  • What about this idea? lets make all the ps3 digital games playables in ps4 instead of wasting funds in this nonsense.

  • Will Canada be included in the closed beta? Im unable to register due to not having a zipcode

  • @80

    Completely different system architecture. Getting digital PS3 games working on PS4 is almost as tricky as getting disc based ones too. It would require a lot of port work done on every single individual game.

    This is the best you’re going to get.

  • @79, hey Gamerz, this is typical for forms, online or not, with set parameters. Some people have names that exceed the space limit. Just add an X till you meet the minimum? From my reading of Sid’s post, this is only for information, not for the actual beta sign up. Since you are a Plus member, you will get Playstation Now info whether you sign up or not. I’m sure you get lots of Sony and Playstation emails like I do, several times a week.

    I’m guessing the beta will be invite only, like pretty much everything on PSN, if it’s a closed beta which the initial test generally is. No idea how they determine whom to invite. Random? Trophy level? Purchase history?

  • Very, very excited for this. Now I just need to move someplace I can get at least 5Mbps! I have no problem with that.

  • @sirbflo114, similar situation buddy.
    The thing is which kind of gamers you are.
    *People (millions) that already bought the PS4 and probably is their first console, they will have access to ps3 games and in the future ps1/ps2. They’re in paradise.
    *Ps3 gamers obsessed with the “i want everything digital” and access to that everywhere/at any time (smartphones/tablets)
    Anyways, the only concern i have if i decide to subscribe to psNow is that being a streaming service is online-always, and they say that besides renting you can buy those digital games and in that moment they will be installed in my console and even when i’m not streaming them i can play them because the emulator psnow provides, But (here’s the thing) what will happen to the games i bought when i decide to finish my membership and i became a ps4 gamer? Ps4 does not have backward compatibility, so i have no way to play them. If that’s the case, definitively is not a “keeper” thing.
    I belong to that ancient race who likes to keep their games. So again:
    Please Sony don’t touch my beloved PS+ service and its great sales.

  • Sony confirmed if you already own the game on disc you still have to pay………that kills this or me, I am not paying twice.

  • Not sure about the rental part.
    I think if we bought them on the PS3 via PSN they should be part of our collection on the PS4.

    I also think PS1 and PS2 games would be better as emulated on the PS4. That way we wouldn’t have to rely on a constant and fast net connection to play a game.

  • I want information about the update in where the ps4 can use mp3 and mp4 media, also headsets and more! also i want an emulator for ps3 games! i have an over 100 games on ps3!!! make it work.

  • hahahaa was waiting for Gamerzlimited to say my name. sorry bro not interested. as for this post… i dont get it.

  • Oh yeah, I’m also part of the generation (probably older than most) that likes to OWN things they buy.
    I have every game I’ve ever purchased from the 80’s on up.

    I’m not big on renting games, but if we can get our PS1 and PS2 DLC purchases from PSN moved to the PS4 that would be a good thing.

  • and he dont even know how to register properly. im stupid but he cant even do something so simple haha smfh.

  • @85
    If I had to guess, one needs to subscribe to PlayStation Now and you would get a bunch of ps3 games that you could play. For example, a subscription service ($50 a year) gives you a list of 50 ps3 games that are updated monthly. Not for me because I have all the games I want on ps3 and don’t have a bunch of portable devices. These are 50 rentals with your subscription and don’t expect the newest released games. Other option is single rental service….. No subscription needed, larger library to choose from (+3000 games) and you pay $5.99 for 5 day rental which I think is reasonable. I used to pay like $7 for ps2 games at blockbuster in the past and movies cost like $5 to rent nowadays. Last option is purchase and you keep forever whether a subscriber or not which similar to ps+ subscription ended.

  • Well, as a ps+ member i know how ps+ works, you buy a game on sale(ps+ benefit) and you keep it and you play it in your ps3 even if you end your membership.
    I was just wondering about the way is going to work on ps4. Because ps4 has no backward compatibility, PSNOW is who will let you play PS1/ps2/ps3 games in the ps4,tablet, etc.
    At this point i’m not anxious i have/own the ps3 games i need. Just wondering what will happen with those games i buy through psnow when my subscription ends and i want to play them in the ps4.

  • Canada where is the love Sony come on like wtf

  • I guess they are putting all of their vita eggs into this basket. Wouldn’t be easier to, you know, make some vita games instead?

  • Not sure how that’s going to work if we already own the games on the PS3… Im certainly not interested in buying the games again just so i can play them that way… and quite frankly, the PS4 is a very questionable purchase for me… for one, i absolutely abhor the must-install games to the hard drive even when we have the disc.. my brother has had his PS4 less than a month and his HDD is already more than half full because the stupid OS and installing a half dozen games, if that… pathetic, absolutely pathetic… Im sorry Sony, i’ve been a life long system owner and im seriously seriously considering staying away this time… and no, im not buying an XboxOne either…

  • @lisatsunami I’ve registered into many sites when I have to put my name and that is the first site I seen that wants me to have 3 letters as a last name. Some people in the world can have two letters in their names especially Chinese people. I wonder if they care if I spell my last name wrong? I decided to write it the way to pronounce it, hopefully that works. I know it’s for info, but I still want to know more about PlayStation Now nether the less. Could it be that Gaikai service that was announced? Can you stream your PS3 games on the Vita now? I have plenty of questions to ask them.

    @PainOfSarrow It’s not my fault because I only have two letters in my last name. If you really don’t get it, how about learning how to read or sign up on that site for info that doesn’t accept people with last names of two letters?

  • Listen to me, SONY. I like this endeavor of yours. HELL, I LOVE what you’re doing with this service, honestly. But let’s put this into persepective for a bit: If I have a PS4, I probably have a PS3 with games. If I have a Bravia TV, and I wanted to play PS3 games on it, I probably already had a PS3. Cellphones, tablets? Good alternative, but again, I probably already have a Playstation in my household for PS games. What I’m saying is, as much as this is a good service to have, you ABSOLUTELY need to bring over a large library of PS1/PS2 to this service. I mean, why does one subscribe if you already have a PS3, if it streams NOTHING BUT PS3 games? YOU NEED TO BRING THE LARGE LIBRARY OF PS1/PS2 CLASSICS, SONY…

  • Hey guys, two pages in and I see LOTS of complaining on a post that is giving you a bit more detail about an upcoming service that has yet to be ironed out.
    We really are an inpatient bunch…

    For the guys with only two letters on their last name:
    Add a tilde ( ~ ), a dash ( – ), an uppercase X, something…

    Good luck Sony, you will need it. At least looking at your consumers from the last time PSNow was talked about and this post.

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