Five Surprising Things About The PS4

I have experienced the worst of all gamer problems: My game shop lost my PS4 preorder. To their credit, though, they immediately gave me my money back, and, more to the point, asked me a question you don’t say “no” to; “Do you want to come in back and check out our store unit?” So I did. And here’s what I learned.

It’s Tiny

I didn’t have a tape measure handy, but it’s about a foot long on either side, although not quite square, and maybe two inches high. It’s a little smaller than the PS3’s redesign, but it’s a lot flatter. You can take the PS4 to work if you feel like it.

You Don’t Need New Cables

You can literally disconnect your PS3 from its cables and plug in your PS4 using the same cables, and it’ll work. For some reason, this feature wowed a lot of the guys at the shop.

It’s Unobtrusive

Leaving aside the glowing little LED trench on the box, it’s pretty much designed to fade into the background. You can slot this into an entertainment center, and it probably won’t do much.

The DualShock 4 Feels Really Good

Unlike most people, I had no gripes about the DualShock 3. It was essentially the DualShock 2 with Bluetooth in it. And the DualShock 4 is really the DualShock 3 with more ergonomic touches. The triggers are a bit stiffer than the 3, and the thumbsticks have a raised ridge around the edges, which makes them easier to find. I played some Killzone and some Knack and had no issues.

The touchpad… did not wow me, but it’s good enough for what it’s supposed to do. Honestly, it seems unlikely you’ll use the thing except to curse it when some developer gets cute with it.

Killzone And Knack Aren’t Bad, But They’re Not Earthshaking, Either

They’re both fun to play, but neither of them will wow you. Killzone: Shadow Fall and Knack are both essentially graphics demos. They’re well-tuned games, in the time I had with them, but they’re not pushing their genres in any new directions. At least Knack is ridiculously hard, like the platformers we all remember.

Should you buy one now? If you’re a huge PlayStation fan, sure; it’s a fun, well-designed system. If you’re waiting to see what games come, though, I didn’t see anything that indicates that’s not a sound strategy.