Get the scoop from GDC 2013

PS4, DualShock 4This week is the 2013 Game Developer’s Conference, which usually doesn’t unveil any megaton announcements, but the small stuff that is revealed at the show is sometimes more interesting.

Along with the announcement that Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes  is actually the prologue for the mysterious Phantom Painwhich was revealed at the Spike Video Game Awards in 2012, and that the latter game is actually Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, new details about the PS4 have come out.

Below is a list of newly announced features of the PS4 and more specifically, the DualShock 4 and PS4 Eye.

Charge DS4 while the PS4 is catching some Z’s

The DualShock 4 can charge while the system is asleep. That’s right, no more sitting down to play a marathon of Call of Duty only to find out your controller is dead.

A headset for every gamer (aka more stuff to throw in that gaming accessories box in your closet)

Sony’s including a headset with every system. One of the complaints with the PS3 Vs. the Xbox 360 was that not enough people talk in online games on the PS3. The thought is that with free headsets in every 360 box, that was what led to more talkative Xbox gamers. Well, hopefully Sony’s plan to include a headset in every box will help people be more verbal in PS4 online games.

Much ado about buttons

The four face buttons and the L1/R1 buttons are now digital instead of analog. This means no more pressure sensitivity, but better response time. In addition, the resolution of the controller’s touchpad has been revealed at 1920 X 900 and the L2/R2 buttons are now curved for better control of racing and shooting games.

Size matters (when it comes to hard drives)

Sony hasn’t announced hard drive sizes thus far but according to IGN and Joystiq, Sony said at GDC that the PS4 will feature a “very large hard drive.”

More friends for the social butterflies

One of the most requested features on the PS3 was a larger friends list size. Sony is adhering to the fans’ demands on the PS4 and says the list will allow for more than the PS3’s current 100 friend restriction, but no numbers were announced.

Never miss that big moment

Sony mentioned that recording in-game footage would take place whether users decide to use it or not. Fortunately, this means if something cool happens in a game, you won’t have to worry about asking yourself, “Was I recording that?!”

Remote Play improvements

Remote Play upgrades include: both the Vita and TV screen will show game footage simultaneously (kind of like the Wii U!), Remote Play can be started at any time, and developers only have to enable Remote Play rather than build it into their games as the PS4’s hardware handles the rest of the work.

Lighting up the competition

PS4 controllers, light barsThe light bar on top of the DualShock 4 isn’t just for show, it’ll track which player users are controlling based on a color code. Gone are the four red squares that were on the DualShock 3 and in their place is a much more exciting system. Player one will be indicated as blue, player two as red, player three as green and player four as pink. These colors coincide with the colors of the face buttons (cross, circle, triangle and square).

Also, not only can the light bar be used to indicate health, explosions/gun shots, etc., but if two players are playing split screen and they physically switch seats on the couch, the screen split will also swap sides. Pretty awesome.

Use your real name, or don’t (if you’re running from the FBI…or something)

PS4 will use your real name in addition to your PSN name, if you so choose. With PS4’s social media integration, players will have the option to display their real names on their own menus and to be broadcast to friends. Thankfully, this entire real name system is optional, so if you don’t want your boss to know you stayed home from work to play inFAMOUS: Second Son, you’ll be okay.

The PS4 Eye is watching (and listening) (and doing other stuff)

Lastly, Sony revealed new details about the PS4 Eye camera. The Eye will not only be a huge improvement over the PS3’s Eye camera and work with PlayStation Move, but it’ll bring with it a plethora of new features for PlayStation gamers.

First of the new details, though, is that the camera will use its own proprietary connector to link up to the PS4. Unfortunately, this means it most likely will only work with the PS4 (sorry PC late-night chatters). On the upside though, it won’t use up any of those coveted USB plugs like the PS3’s Eye camera does.

In terms of those new features we mentioned, the PS4 Eye will be capable of voice and face recognition, allow users to login using the camera, taunt opponents in kill cams and for creating video walkthroughs.

For more on the PlayStation 4, DualShock 4, and the PS4 Eye camera, check out Sac City Gamer’s PS4 details post.

For more on the PS4 from IGN, check out this video.

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