Feels like yesterday that many of you readers and myself included were all excited about Sony’s foray into the console business.
It was way back on December 3rd 1994, 20 years to the day, that the PlayStation made its historic debut. Sony had everyone trading in their game cartridges and picking up their new disc based games. However, discs were not the only thing that changed in Sony’s iteration of game console. The console introduced dual analog sticks and solidified the use of 3d graphics and for the last 20 years the PlayStation brand has continued to innovate.
From the release of the Playstation, Sony has iterated on what it means to be a game console. It was evident that the success of the Sony’s next console, the PlayStation 2 , was based on the PlayStation brand being so popular. By including, backwards compatibility, cutting edge DVD player functionality, and one of the more successful attempts to bring online gaming to consoles, Sony was able to make the “PS2” a juggernaut, selling over 155 million units in its lifetime.
Sony’s next product, the PlayStation Portable introduced its signature console-quality games to a portable format, perhaps changing what people thought that portable gaming can be. “PSP” gave gamers access to music, video, and other media on the go; it also introduced a new large screen as opposed to the screens used by Nintendo’s handhelds at the time.
The PlayStation 3 marked Sony’s step into HD gaming. In a similar fashion to the PS2, the PS3 was pivotal in the physical media war between HD DVD and BluRay disc. The PS3 and Sony’s adoption of the BluRay almost single-handedly made BluRay what it is today. However, physical media was just one of Sony’s ideas to diversify itself. With online services like Microsoft’s Xbox Live becoming ever popular, Sony chose to follow suit. It was only when Sony released arguably the “best deal in the gaming”, PlayStation Plus, that the PS3 really found its footing and marked a resurgence within Sony to win back gamer’s hearts. Sony’s passion continued to the last product of the last generation, the PlayStation Vita. Redefining what portable gaming can be once again, using PlayStation Plus to their advantage, and successful planning with the next generation of their home console, Sony was able to make the “PSVita” work.
Last but, not least is Sony’s latest and greatest, the PlayStation 4. The PS4 is the culmination of what Sony has planned thus far for the Playstation brand. Introducing a developer-focused design for a controller and an almost impossibly slim design for the console itself, showed gamers how much love and engineering went into the PS4. The PlayStation 4’s capabilities of live streaming games and gamers is by far the most surprising of this generation and will no doubt stand out as a marker in Sony’s additions to the console space. Selling over 13.5 million as of September 30th, the PS4 is on the right track to be as successful or more so than any other console since its Sony’s initial debut 20 years ago.
To mark its 20 year anniversary Sony is releasing a limited edition PS4. The limited PS4 come in the original PlayStation grey color. It comes bundled with a matching PlayStation Camera, vertical stand and DualShock 4 controller. There will only be 12,300 of these consoled made, so it will be truly limited. No news yet on pricing or release date. However, Sony has stated that pre-orders will start on Saturday, December 6th and that more information will be revealed at the PlayStation Experience keynote on Saturday morning at 10:00am Pacific time.
Below is PlayStation Blog’s unboxing video for the new 20th Anniversary Edition PS4:
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