back to article PS4 and Xbox 720 due by 2012, says Crysis firm

The president of game developer Crytek has predicted that the successors to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 will appear within the next three to four years. Cevat Yerli was hosting a talk titled "The Future of Gaming Graphics" at the ongoing GC Developer Conference in Leipzig, Germany, when he said that “the PlayStation 4 and …

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Joke

Why do they call it Xbox 720?

Because you'll turn 720 degrees and walk away

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Gates Horns

720, maybe, PS4 unlikely.

Microsoft have a track record of shortcutting generations to gain marketshare, they also have a history of killing the previous gen prematurely to spur new console sales (both clearly at the expense of consumers).

Sony have a track record of producing new consoles every 7 or so years, and supporting the previous gen for a further 5 years (12 in total).

I'm not even convinced shareholders would allow Microsoft to make another Xbox, given the massive failure financially the previous attempts have been, which at last look was ~9Billion in the red for the Entertainments and Devices division (which also includes the disasterous Zune).

If I had to guess, I would say a Xbox in 2012, a PS4 in 2014.

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Flame

Don't get too excitied!

Love it, this will give the geeks something to talk and speculate about for the next few years! lol

I'll not loose any sleep over this anyway. I bought both a PS3 and 360 on day of purchase and they barely got used for the first 12 months. It takes over a year for the software and games to be any good so need to worry about an upgrade for quite some time. In the mean time, the PS3 and 360 will continue to develop and produce some quality games.

I doubt this will be the last rumour we hear on this subject.

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Anonymous Coward

XBox 720

Who even says it will be called the XBox 720?

Surely the logical progression would be XBox - XBox 360 - XBox 129600 (360*360). Or perhaps it will be XBox Frontflip? Or perhaps XBox 361? XSphere?

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Pirate

It's a fact

Thanks to my NDA with Sony I can confirm that there absolutely may be a PS4 within the timeframe of 3-4 years or maybe longer or even a bit sooner.

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Dan
Stop

Not convinced...

MS and Sony have worked out by now that Nintendo is selling bags more kit than those two, despite the weaker hardware capabilities. I think the endless striving to improve graphics may be coming to an end - how much more real than a game look/sound than is already available? MS and Sony would be just as well sticking to the current hardware and working out how to make the most of it selling hardware peripherals (a la the Wii) and focusing on decent gameplay.

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Dead Vulture

I can play this game too

I can confidently predict that Nintendo will launch a new console in the next five to ten years, and Sega will be producing some new games in the near future!

Furthermore, Microsoft are working on a BRAND NEW operating system, but hold your horses, Apple are racing ahead with some shiny new gadgets too! Rumour has it, they might even follow up the popular iPhone with a new version...

Can I have my journalism degree now?

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The PS4 will feature a new cell processor with 100s of SPEs

I attended a talk on game development given by an employee of Sony last year. In this lecturer the developer said that it was possible to write higher performance games for a PS3 than for an XBOX 360, However the key was to run code on all 6 avaliable Cell processor SPEs. He said that this would be increasingly important in the future because future Cell processors would feature "100s of SPEs".

I am therefore confident that the PS4 will feature more than 100 SPEs. An individual SPE only occupies a very small part of each Cell processor die. I therefore think that according to Moores' law a Cell processor featuring 100s of SPEs could be manufactured well before 2011.

My suspicion is that the PS4 was due to be announced this year and that plans to release a PS4 were shelved to ensure that SONY's Playstation division became profitable this year.

I suspect that the only difference between a PS3 and a PS4 will be a Cell processor upgrade and more system RAM and that this would make upgrading existing stocks of PS3s to PS4s very easy.

I think that the new Cell processor in the PS4 will run at the same clock frequency as that in the PS3 (3.2 GHz) to ensure backwards compatibility with the PS3. I also think that there are games manufacturers who are currently developing PS4 games using existing PS3s with upgraded Cell processors.

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Gates Horns

Really!!!

PS3 fan here but,

760 in 3 years

rushed out and stable in, well never

PS4 in 4.5 years

stable within 1 firmware upgrade

If the last product lauches were any thing to go by...

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The routine

Take Nintendo's US releases for example.

SNES: 1991

N64: 1996

Cube: 2001

Wii: 2006

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. I wonder if I can spot a pattern.

Note that the other competing systems tend to come out within a year of each other.

The only news here is that people act like it's news that there are going to be more game systems, and that it's tough to predict when they'll show up.

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Flame

@Justin

"PS4 in 4.5 years

stable within 1 firmware upgrade"

Will the PS3 have any games worth playing by then?

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Happy

RE: Why do they call it Xbox 720

You muppet, if you turn 720 degrees you'll be facing the same way as you were in the first place!

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Need more power to run your game?

How about you optimize that bloated game engine instead?

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Stu
Stop

CryTek eh?

In 2012 there might actually be (cheap?) hardware out there that runs Crysis with maxxed out gfx settings. Who knows!?

This dick helped to destroy the PC games industry (at least for me) by releasing games with requirements skewed massively forwards from the hardware capabilities available at the time.

Single handedly turned the industry towards your die hard 'spend £1500 on yer PC hardware every quarter-year' fanboys and nobody else.

Bad move.

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@PaulM and SPEs

Pauls a bit out there I reckon since IBM have been focussing on a modified CELL BE alright and its in the worlds fastest computer right now (Roadrunner 1Petaflop) but the mod was to make it handle double precision maths properly and address more memory which is not much use to games consoles!

As for 100s of SPEs - not any time soon - the most up to date CELL has an insane amount of internal bandwidth (300Gb/s peak) but it needs it to drive all the SPEs. Scaling that to 100s of SPEs on one core would not be easy to say the least!

SO the claim there are games developers creating games for the PS4 with a magic new CELL BE is ridiculous not least because most of the visual grunt in a PS3 is the graphics chipset! Hence an upgraded PS3 with a new CELL BE and more memory might make my Yellow Dog Linux install run better but it won't improve games much.

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Wii

I shall refrain from speculating what the next-generation Wii might be called...

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Next Gen consoles

I hear a certain company is furiously working on the 3DO 2 console... er 6DO? 3DO squared? 360DO?

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Coat

Perhaps...

The next XBox will be called the Xbox E (for exponential overflow), when Redmond's scientific calculator software finally throws in the towel trying to work out what's next.

Mine's the one worn by a failed maths professor.

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Joke

360 Times Table

720, 1080... wait a minute. Hidden reference to HDTV!

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Thumb Up

The next Wii

will be the Puu... can't wait

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Anonymous Coward

@James Billingham

"because most of the visual grunt in a PS3 is the graphics chipset!"

Actually that's untrue, if the Cell is programmed properly (as in not having to cater multiplatorm gamers for underpowered last-gen systems), the Cell is the GPU workhorse, and the RSX is simply a assistance for Cell.

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@James Billingham SPEs + Linux

The SONY man may have been refering to the PS5 when talking about 100s of SPEs.

In the PS3 Cell processor only 7 of the 8 SPEs on the chip are connected. This was done to improve yield because the chip would be usable even if one SPE was faulty. In the PS3 one SPE is dedicated for use by the operating system which leaves only 6 for use by PS3 game developers. I think that the yield of Cell processors has improved and so if required the number of SPEs available for game developers could be increased to 7 tomorrow.

I also think that a Cell processor with 20 SPEs could easily be produced using current technology because this would only require a doubling of the number of transistors on chip.

The SONY man was adamant that as many SPEs as possible should be used not only for graphics but also for Physics, AI and sound. Reading between the lines I think that he was hinting that game developers should start thinking in terms of using at least 20 SPEs on each Cell processor.

I think that SONY has been slowing down development of the PS4 to focus on short term profitability. One indication of this was selling the Cell manufacturing plant to Toshiba. None the less I think this has done no more than to perhaps delay the release of the PS4 from Christmas 2009 to Christmas 2011?

I must admit that my suggestion that the PS4 would have more main memory was based on posts in the IBM Cell developers web site that suggest that IBMs own Cell based systems offer many times the performance of the PS3 due to the IBM systems having more main memory.

I wonder if there is a mod the can be made to a PS3 system board to give it more main memory?

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@PaulM

Hold your horses there sonny.

The revisions to Cell have helped double precision performance and overall performance (computational and thermal) of the processor. The revisions have not focused on adding more SPEs.

Take note from the design of IBMs Cell based super computers. They run multiple cells in parallel. Cell is designed especially to do this, allowing multiple cells in parallel to work together. Something that is not so far-fetched in a 4-5 year timescale is a single die package that fits as many as 8 Cells on a single die along with the appropriate interconnects.

In fact a PS4 based on a multi-Cell design would be great for Sony since backwards compatibility would be a walk in the park and developers would be able to build directly on existing Cell based PS3 libraries and skills. It would be a heck of a lot cheaper to go this way as well, since the new system would be an evolution of the existing design instead of a radical redesign.

It may not be 100s of SPEs, but an 8 Cell package with 8 groups of 8 SPEs plus 8 Power cores, would be a hefty amount of computing power for any consumer product - right now it would qualify as a real super computer.

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Joke

What they really mean

Wii don't really know any more than you.

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Gates Horns

Well...

since the games are taking longer per game to become shelf-worthy anymore, that linear advancement of console generations will probably lengthen this time around, especially since disposable income is dropping here in the US due to the insane jump in fuel prices and lack of job growth (a lot of people are plain broke).

Also, since the game distributors are merging like crazy, small-budget games are going to be relegated to the back seat, so the distributors can focus their advertising engine on the most profitable games, instead of giving everyone a shot at getting out their ideas. Less games = less chance of getting a new system. Also, more profitable games ~= more expensive games (which is a major problem these days).

As for the successor to the Wii, I >will< go there. It'll be called the "Wiii". :)

Gates, because the MS black hole will eventually suck in Blizzard, EA, Ubisoft, Sony, Nintendo, and all the rest. It's only a matter of time.

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720? Not likely

It's pretty obvious to me that the only reason Xbox called their new console the 360 was for comparison reasons. You're in a shop and there are two machines on display, the Xbox 2 and the Playstation 3. Immediately the Xbox 2 appears worse to the uneducated eye, like how the guy from Spinal Tap fails to understand that because his amp goes up to 11 it's not necessarily any louder than one that goes up to 10.

Simple as. 360 starts with a "3" so it was chosen to compete with the PS3.

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@Highlander

I haven't been called sonny for 40 years and so I guess I should regard it as a complement.

My point is not that I am clever enough to work out the architecture of the PS4. My point is that a leading games industry figure and employee of SONY told me that the number of SPEs was due to rise (in a public lecture).

I did a trawl of the internet last night and have discovered that I am no longer the only person who thinks that the number of SPEs is due to rise. I discovered the following post in "ps4forums.org":

"Here’s some technical information on a possible new cell chip for the PS4. We’ve heard about the Cell 3 chip with 32 SPEs and 2 PPEs, well it seems IBM are due to change all that. The new possible chip now is the design is 32 SPEs and 4 PPEs (see page 10).

Some features of the new chip:

100% backward compatible

Performance on PPE significantly better

Performance per SPE equal or better

Significantly better on applications that benefit from new instructions

Better inter-SPE latency

More on-chip memory

Better main memory latency and bandwidth

Apparently IBM are aiming for 1 TeraFLOPS of performance with this new chip. To put that into perspective the current Playstation 3 Cell chip is only capable of 204 GigaFLOPS.

The new cell is projected for around 2010/2011, with 2011 rumored to be the year we’ll see a PS4 release…coincidence?"

I have no idea if "ps4forums" is a reliable source of information. However I found similar specs in several other internet sites last night.

It also makes sense that the number of SPEs in the new Cell chip should be a power of 2 and not 20 as I had guessed.

My experience of ASIC design is that it is easy to increase the number of serial controllers on an ASIC. Most of the work is done by the ASIC design tool. I am sure that increasing the number of SPEs in a Cell processor would be equally straight forward.

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P J

Non story

"He stressed that the dates are “just our [Crytek’s] estimate” "

So really, he's talking out of his ar$e. Trying to create a story with there isn't one.

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