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

  • This sounds epic can’t wait to test it :)

  • Disappointing that Vita comes after PS3 and PS4; shows that Sony still lacks commitment to that device.

  • What does this mean for Vita developed games? Will Sony continue to make big budget games for the Vita? Reason I ask is because I commute to work 1 hour each way on the train and play my Vita during that commute. I like the I idea of Playstation Now, but I have no access to Wii-fi on the train.

  • Looks awesome, can’t wait to try this out in my Vita once it’s available!

  • The few things that I think are a must for PS Now are family sharing much like PS Plus works, so we don’t have to buy multiple subscriptions if you more than 1 person wants to play. And the other one is DS4 support for at least TVs and Tablets.

  • Also how come Canadian zip codes don’t work! We are also part of North America :)

  • Again, a great concept but like so many others have pointed out, it relies on broadband speed. Now we just moved in with a relative to help out due to his age and I have gone from a nice 15mbps connection down to some crap wireless speed that is supposed to be 1.5mbps but never seems to get there. Someone needs to talk to the cheap bastards at the phone and cable companies to get broadband available at good speeds to everyone before ideas like this are put into action.

    Same thing with movies – I have Amazon Prime……well good luck with that now at this horrid speed.

    All the money flying around and nobody has the 1% of the brain to figure out they need to have more people available to get this so start flogging the phone and cable cheapskates to make it happen. They definitely wont do it on their own.

  • I’ll totally pass on this. I don’t rent games/movies/etc. No way I’ll pay a subscription for this. Remember this: pretty sure you’ll be have the chance to rent a game you like only once per month with an amount of days (2 or 3).

  • You got my support with this new way of gaming on console, under 1 condition the ability to still have my physical copy available in the next console cycle, i hope this is not your way of saying we slowly removing physical copy of games off the market. I am behind you 100% and will continue to support you and do love the way i get to use my PS4 to play PS3 library

  • This was done a long time ago. Back in the Saga Genesis times. Time Warner cable had Saga channel with a lot of saga games to play any time. It ran smooth as silk back then so with teck. what it is today this will be a lot better then the saga era. I remember some long nights and sleepy work days from this.

  • Vita should have been a priority over PS3.

  • Ok, after reading through all the repetitive questions, complaints and threats in the other PS Now blog I’ve figured out how this will work and the real clue is the rental feature. We don’t rent movies on Netflix so PS Now can’t be a fixed price subscription plan.

    It will simply be a third way to buy a game. For example, when I buy Dark Souls 2, I can either buy the disc, buy the digital download from PSN (keyword is download) or buy it for streaming. Either way it’s the same $60 bucks. Each format has its own pros and cons so the consumer makes the choice best for him/her. In order to play on different systems you’d have to buy the streaming version. That’s it. I’m betting they will offer a huge discount if you get both the downloaded and streamed versions but it can’t be free or there was no business reason for Sony to pay millions to buy Gaikai. So those of us with a digital library will have to pay again, but I’m also betting it will be like the current upgrade PS3 to PS4 program–pay $10 to upgrade, but probably much less. There will be no consideration for disc owners. No practical way to implement that plan and still turn a profit.

  • It could be cool :D
    But can’t SONY just make another more expensive PS4 with PS3 & PS2 & PS1 Disc playback? ? ? I am SURE SONY are brainy enough to do it :D & i am SURE some people would spend more to get one. I would! :P

  • Gaiki purchase unfolding nicely . This will blow the new steam console out of the water, PSN will continue to reach to the next level with the future of gameing and family entertainment . PlayStation 4 the future of gameing unleashed. Thank you from your customer Ambassador to the PSN Gregory S.Napier PSN id:bombbreath twitter GregNapier123 any ? Drop me a line, I will do my best to anwser any PSN related ?

  • Any word on a UK/EU launch? Internet speeds tend to be unlimited (uncapped) and quite reasonable so don’t see why that would be a problem…

  • I just wanna ask this to be clear, is “5 mbps” supposed to be Mbps (640KB/s) or actually 5 MB/s? I swear I saw some mod’s reply saying it was “5 MBPS+” but now I see mbps, they’re 8 times different <.<

    And can you tell me the minimum requirement to stream to vita regardless of images quality for optimal fps?

  • Why “PlayStation Now”? Other than it may be confused with PSN (PlayStation Network), it seems like a lazy name choice.

    Did anyone there even consider any of these?

    PlayStation Direct
    PlayStation Beyond
    PlayStation Infinite
    PlayStation Live
    PlayStation Life
    PlayStation Surge
    PlayStation Union

    If PlayStation doesn’t have to come first;

    Total PlayStation
    Pure PlayStation

    These sound good, but share same acronym as PlayStation Portable:

    PlayStation Pit
    PlayStation Pub
    PlayStation Prime
    PlayStation Pure

    I suppose I can get used to having to distinguish which PSN I’m referring to.

  • I love you so much Sony you have no idea.

  • PS Vita remote desktop please. It’s possible, it works, and would be a complete tool for managing all of my entertainment and computing while on the go. Think about that Sony, you could offer the ultimate computing/gaming machine for less than an iPhone. It works, do it.

  • Oh, and this is not likely to work due to constant IP throttling. There isn’t a single ISP in the USA that is increasing it’s infrastructure. The switching networks are garbage and Fios runs right into coax non-stop. The ISPs can’t handle the load and simply don’t want to.

  • How many times this service will crash? I’ve 5G at home and Home (PS3) crashes all the time. I gotta wait 5 seconds to move and then it crashes.

  • well…looks like we wont see the playstation 5 console in the future…. now theres no reason for ppl to own a PS console anymore… sony committing harakiri…. :/

  • I would really wish to get into this beta, I want to know if Sony will also be thinking of also trying to bring us PS4 owners PlayStation Home to the next generation, I really miss that service on the PS4 and would really like to see this back on my next generation system very soon. I have my fingers crossed to get in the PlayStation Now Beta to test all problems & glitches, so here is my request to get into the program ( I signed up on that website that was provided so push me in with all the other lucky beta testers on that special list you guys have there LOL). Thanks for the opportunities and keep up all the good work, my glass is up to a fantastic year for the PS4.

  • Something is wrong!

    It will not let me enter my Postal Code!

  • Think Sony could petition the CRTC up here to force ISPs to have more reasonable data caps? Canada’s data caps make streaming a no-go for so many users.

    For instance, I pay $54/mo for 30Mbit service with a cap of 275GB/mo. According to Google’s calculator feature, that’s just shy of 21 hours of full-speed downloading (and they include uplink bandwidth, so even less).

  • It would appear that form only allows Americans to find out more … Canadians must lie about their ZIP code it would seem.

  • This has prob been answered 1000 times, but im going to ask again because I have to get back to AC:BF

    Where can I sign up to get into the beta for Playstation Now?

  • Well, streaming Heavy Rain or Beyond will basically be the exact same as Netflix as they are not so much games as mildly interactive movies… still, not willing to pay a monthly fee ON TOP OPF PS+. I think it should be integrated into PS+ for the ones paying for one service. Makes more sense. But I suppose especially on PS4 as it should have been BC to start, and you HAVE to have a PS+ to play online… it SHOULD be included and not extra.

  • Now what happened to all the digital content I have purchased through sony that was supposed to work on all platforms…will i have to pay again to play it through this service???

    Problem I see is this is just a renamed gaikai(if thats right) the same as onlive and it works well enough but games that require quick movement are going to have issues due to the network infrastructure in NA.

  • I love how you picked The Last of Us. THAT GAME IS AWESOME/my favorite.

  • GTA V plz

  • So PS Now cannot come to Europe because of low Internet speeds? How many of you are close to this: http://www.speedtest.net/my-result/3198733131 And that’s 17$/month.

  • As a PS plus member and a subscriber to music unlimited, I would like to receive this service for free or at least with a hefty discount. In the current economical climate it is hard to afford all these services, which don’t even work properly most of the time…

  • I’m loving the idea, can’t wait for the launch, just one request. Hear me out, I am a long time Sony consumer, but I really hope that there will be an app offered on the windows store. I would love to plug in my ps4 controller on my surface and get a couple of headshots in on break or at the In-Laws. Just a thought.

  • Would it be possible to pair the Dualshock 4 (rather than the Dualshock 3) with a Bravia TV?

  • is 10 mb enough for 1080p-720p live streaming?

  • Question! Will my PS3 Last of Us saved game be transferred to the PS4 version or do i have to start all over?

  • Will it be a NetFlix kind of deal where you subscribe to use the service, a PlayStation Plus member accesses the service for free, or a buy the game to use it deal? (If its a buy the game deal,then will PS Plus members get discount?)

  • Will I still have assess to my instant game collection from my ps3 on my ps4 with this? I ask because I sold my ps3 to get my ps4.

  • Sony!

    Bring VitaTV to the U.S. so I can stream my PS4 titles to my bedroom television and also use Playstation Now in there as well. I’ll give you the $100 asking price, just bring me the device!


    Sony Fan :)

  • signed me up for the beta signed me up for the beta please im so excited i cant wait i hope ps plus ties in with the subscription cant wait love u sony lol kondou is with us all

  • Super excited for Playstation Now. I hope I can get in the beta, and I will definitely sign up for this when it starts up this summer. I travel alot out of town with my job, and something like this is perfect for me.

  • Can we purchase games on PlayStation Now? Where we pay a one time fee for a certain game for unlimited access; or is it purley a rental/subscription service?

  • The instant game collection NEEDS to be included in this. Any games from the IGC should be able to be played in PSNow

  • I hope this doesn’t mean that PS plus won’t stop getting good games as free downloads.

  • I’m confused about PS Now? Will it Be Free? Will It Be Apart Of PSPlus? or will it just be its onwn separate thing Apart from both , I personally can’t wait ..I hope they Add LittleBigPlanet 2 on the games you can play =P

  • You know what I’d love to see on PlayStation Now? The Last Guardian! Haha, I kid (not really!).

    Although I still own the game (and the original console), I’d love to play Destruction Derby at work, especially during “those days.” You all know what I mean!

  • Woua it’s amazing !!

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