My First 24 Hours with PlayStation 4 | Gamerillaz

My First 24 Hours with PlayStation 4

My First 24 Hours with PlayStation 4
 

I’m finding it incredibly hard to think of a good opening to this piece. How do I capture the importance of the last 24 hours? How do I sum up everything I have seen and experienced? And how the hell am I supposed to do anything at all really when I’ve got a brand new PlayStation 4 sitting just a few feet away from me!? It’s calling to me, inviting me with its soft blue light… What’s that, PS4? Play you? I mustn’t!! I have news to spread of your glory!

My tale begins back at E3. As a long time fan of PlayStation I was almost certainly going to get a PS4 but I’m a gamer, not a fanboy, and I hadn’t ruled out the possibility of a new Xbox to set beside my 360. Then E3 happened. Sony spoke to me about gaming while Microsoft blew both their feet off with a sawn-off shotgun. I found my nearest GameStop and pre-ordered my console and it’s a good thing that I did as it resulted in me being amongst the lucky few who received their new console at midnight on Thursday night.

This little bundle of joy came into my world on November 29th 2013…

Upon arriving home I set upon rigging it up. I opted for the Killzone Mega Bundle with which I got a copy of Killzone: Shadow Fall, an extra controller and a PlayStation Eye camera for an extra hundred euro. The console is exactly as easy to set up as you might expect and comes with a HDMI cable and headset. One interesting thing to note is that there’s no gaudy power brick hanging out of the back of it. I had been a little worried about PSN being unable to withstand the European launch and had taken the precaution of downloading firmware update 1.51 to a USB stick just in case. To my delight, after going through a couple of setup screens for internet and time and date, I realised that the PS4 had been downloading the firmware update in the background and was ready to install; impressive!

The user interface is very slick and somehow manages to feel new and familiar at the same time. It has some neat little tricks like logging me in based on facial recognition and voice command functionality that does seem genuinely useful which is something I thought I’d never be saying. Once you pop in a game disk it forms a new icon on the main home screen and begins installing to the hard drive straight away. You can launch a game and begin playing while updates are still downloading which is both good and bad as you need to exit the game to apply the update which feels a little counter-intuitive after you’ve just started playing. However, I don’t think this will be a issue for me long term as I’ll be letting my PS4 auto-update in standby mode from here on out.

The new home screen is well designed and easy to use

The whole UI seems polished and easy to get to grips with. Games and apps launch instantly with no lag and I even noticed the PlayStation store was running smoothly when I popped on to download my free (for Plus members) copies of Resogun and Contrast. Speaking of games… let’s speak about the games!

My first port of call was Killzone: Shadow Fall and let me just say “Wow”! The game is a stunner. If this is what a launch title looks like then what the hell are games going to look like a few years down the line? I died a lot but it was almost always because I was looking off into the distance at the scenic landscape or inspecting the textures on a table. The gameplay feels great and the controller touch pad and speaker integration feels spot on rather than tacked on. I’m going to have a good time with this game, that’s for sure. Apart from Killzone I took to the road in Need For Speed: Rivals. Drive Club was going to be my launch driving game but after its disappointing delay NFS: Rivals stepped up to take its place. The game looks great and feels fun to play and I’m looking forward to taking this one online and challenging my mates. It will definitely scratch that racing itch for those of us who can’t play Forza 5!

Sunshine, lollipops and… Helghast!!!

Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag was a surprise purchase for me as I’ve grown tired of the series in recent years yet as I queued for my console rolling footage of its colourful islands, beautiful boats and pirate hi-jinks played on the GameStop TV and I found myself picking up a copy alongside the console. And I’m glad that I did! Its looked lush and beautiful, the story seems interesting so far and there’s no sign of Desmond. Result! FIFA 14 looks equally impressive and Resogun will leave you wanting one more turn time and time again. With the last generation of consoles making such a huge graphical leap forward I feel that this generation will be all about the details. The way the light bleeds through a window in Killzone, the blades of grass in Fifa, a weird cat on a roof in AC4; this is the generation where shortcomings should become a thing of the past. The games truly feel next-gen.

You’ll find yourself stopping the car to take in the view a lot in Need for Speed: Rivals

Probably the biggest surprise to me is how well everything is working on launch day. Within minutes I was posting screenshots to Twitter and sharing video clips to Facebook. It is literally as easy as hitting the share button on the controller and choosing where you want to send your upload. I haven’t tried broadcasting yet but I’m looking forward to it. I also powered up my Vita to check out remote play and yet again, within a minute, I was playing Assassin’s Creed IV on my handheld. It just worked and it looked and played pretty damn good on the Vita as well.

Sharing is caring!

I suppose if I was to sum up my first 24 hours with the PS4 I would say that it’s everything I hoped it would be and a few things that I hadn’t dared dream it could be. The games look great, the controller feels superb and the console interface is a pleasure to use. Then there’s all the other stuff; social media integration, sharing, Vita remote play, voice and video commands; the list goes on and on. While I’m not ruling out an Xbox One in my future (especially if they ever decide to make a sequel to Alan Wake) for now I’ll be pinning my colours to the Sony mast. Who will come out on top of the most exciting console war in generations? Perhaps only South Park holds the answer…

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