A few posts back, I wrote about the Razer Switchblade as one of the possible options in the next generation portable gaming scene. But a recent announcement by Sony looks to shake up the portable gaming world and take it up a notch with their handheld device.
Revealed recently at the “PlayStation Meeting” in Japan, the device is currently dubbed the Next Generation Portable (or NGP), and it promises a ton of features that rival most portable handhelds on the market. Featuring the same “super oval” shape similar to the design of the original PlayStation Portable, it has a 5 inch OLED capacitive touchscreen in the center of the device; along with two analogue sticks, a D-pad, a set of standard PlayStation face buttons (Triangle, Circle, Cross and Square), two shoulder buttons (L and R), a PlayStation button as well as the Start and Select buttons. A new crazy feature of the new handheld is a rear touch-pad that can be used for certain games.
Internally, the device features a 4 core ARM Cortex-A9 core processor, a SGX543MP4+ graphics processing unit, which gives the NGP an edge of over current portables, more specifically the Nintendo DS line of consoles (such as the newly announced Nintendo 3DS). Sony stated that they wanted to make the system as powerful as the PlayStation 3, and the updated control scheme (by which I mean the extra analog stick, which was strangely absent from the Playstation Portable) means that the device can replicate the graphics and controls of this generation’s games.
Rounding out the hardware specifications are a front camera, a rear camera, stereo speakers, microphone, Sixaxis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer), three-axis electronic compass, and built-in GPS. Connectivity wise, the system supports Wi-Fi, 3G, and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR connectivity, so no gamer will be left behind while out in public.
With it’s advanced graphical capabilities and improved control scheme, many developers are signing up to develop games for the NGP, so it’s not a surprise that Epic Games (creators of the Unreal and Gears Of War series), id Software (creators of the Doom series, and the upcoming game called Rage), Activision (creators of the popular Call Of Duty series), and a bunch of other prominent developers and publishers have all confirmed that they will be developing games on the new handheld.
With impressive features on both the hardware and software front, playing high definition games on the go without having to gimp the graphics or control scheme is possible. Now hardcore pro-gamers of the world have another impressive next generation gaming device to choose for on-the-go gaming.