PlayStation 4: A Gamer’s Paradise

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Music and Media

The PS4 offers a USB Music Player option to play your own music through a USB device or you can also choose to purchase a subscription to play Music Unlimited within any apps including games. It is a rather convenient feature for games with smaller soundtracks to be able to switch up the music with your own. The system also comes with menu music that varies depending on which theme you’ve chosen. The Destiny theme plays the Destiny theme track and uses Destiny audio sounds on the navigation menu, but each theme carries a different type of audio mix for navigation and menu music.

The PS4 offers the usual suite of on demand video services including Amazon, Hulu Plus, Netflix, NBA League Pass, Vudu, WWE Network, Crunchyroll and others. Notably, the PS4 does not offer a lot of cable tie in channels such as CW Now or Fox Now which allow you to watch TV shows on demand as long as you have cable. HBO Go has also been announced for the PS4, but the app has not been completed and added to the list of options as of yet.

In addition, Sony has announced a new beta program for a service called PlayStation Vue which will allow for PlayStation users to watch network and cable channels in real time and on demand. At this time the beta or PlayStation Vue is unavailable, but the promise of watching TV through your PlayStation without the need for cable is currently an interesting dynamic to watch and see if Sony can pull it off.

Sony continues to offer its Video Unlimited service to be able to rent or own movies digitally on your PS4 as well. All media downloads can also be found in the Media bar that is the immediate menu when you turn on your PS4. In your library, it can be separated from the rest of your applications and games as well.


Recently, I have been playing Assassin’s Creed: Rogue on the PS3 and the difference in what the PS4 is capable of producing as an image is stark and strong. Without making a ton of noise, the PS4 is able to push out high textured images, usually around 1080p, throughout games. There have been some situations where this is not the case, but the PS4 has proven capable of making 1080p a normal standard for image textures.

What is more the PS4 is capable of delivering much steadier frame rates than previous generations. Many games are able to hold 30 frames per second very well and some games have shown that 60 frames per second may also very well be a possibility. Other imagery tricks employed by developers such as anti-aliasing are also able to be rendered by the PS4 at the highest degree among current video game consoles. All of this is to say the PS4 renders most games with clean, clear, and vivid imagery with greater draw distances and more textures and details than previously able to do on systems like the PS3 or Xbox 360. In some cases, it is also clearly the market leader for consoles in terms of producing images and steady gameplay among the Xbox One and the Wii U as well.

When playing games, the PS4 runs pretty quiet even when it is working to produce the images you are seeing on the screen. It also has a failsafe feature if it overheats where it will automatically shut off to make sure the system’s hardware is not damaged. With proper ventilation around the system and without the use of extra fans, the PS4 works very well without being in need of much attention beyond a regular dusting.

Video Game Studio Support

The PS4 is a very widely supported system from all angles. Sony has highly invested in their World Wide Studios (WWS) which bring first party content to the PS4 such as Knack, Infamous: Second Son, and Killzone: Shadow Fall. Bridging the gap between the PS3 and the PS4, WWS has supported ports such as the Last of Us Remastered as well to introduce new gamers to some of the quality work from these studios.

All of the major publishers are signed on to produce content for the PS4. In addition, there are many independent game publishers providing content for the PS4 to flesh out its library between major releases. EA, Ubisoft, Take Two, and Activision/Blizzard have utilized their studios available to them to provide many AAA experiences on consoles this past year, but the growth of the independent developer’s abilities to provide games on consoles has been very important to fleshing out the variety of content available as well. Games like Velocity 2X, Strider, Guacamelee, Resogun, and others have helped to round out my game playing experience the past year alongside big titles like Destiny, Watch Dogs, NBA 2K15, and Grand Theft Auto V.

Sony allows for independent developers to publish themselves on the system, as well. Some of them are able to even include their games on PlayStation Plus at launch on the console. The relationships Sony continues to have, make, and develop with independent developers has really helped to create a vibrant ecosystem of games for every kind of gamer.

Should you buy a PlayStation 4?

If any of the above descriptors appeal to you, then you should consider the PlayStation 4 as you upgrade your videogame hardware this holiday season. Its snappy interface, longstanding first, second, and third party support, as well as its console leading performance make the PS4 an ideal video game machine. It has some faults, such as an online multiplayer paywall with PS+ or a lack of customization in the OS, but overall the PS4 is built with gamers in mind and lends itself to a quality gameplay experience.

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