Here it is folks, Sony’s successor to the Playstation Portable, the Playstation NGP, which is codename for “Next Generation Portable” (What? You thought it meant Neo Geo Pocket).
Sony revealed the new handheld just recently and this Sony fanboy watched the press conference live since I was able to understand it (the press event was in Japanese) and I really had nothing better to do. So let’s get right to it.
The NGP features a 5″ OLED touch screen (960×544 resolution) as well as a touch pad on the back of the device, a front and rear camera, dual analog sticks (yes, actual sticks and not the nub from the PSP), Wi-Fi and 3G, GPS, mic, electronic compass on 3 axes, and SixAxis like capabilities. NGP will not be using UMDs but will be using “New Game Media,” which is a flash memory-based card (looks similar to DS carts). It will, however, be able to play downloadable PSP games so it features some sort of backwards compatibility. They aim for a 2011 holiday release but no price was announced (they gotta have something to announce at E3).
Known games that has been announced for development for the handheld are: Hot Shots Golf, Gravity Daze, Reality Fighters, Smart As, Broken, Little Deviants, Little Big Planet, WipEout, Killzone, Resistance, and Uncahrted.
They showed some Uncharted gameplay by using the dual touch pad to move Drake around. Little Deviants showed how the rear touch pad will effect gameplay while Hot Shots Golf showed off the cameras capabilities for augmented reality as well as motion capabilities.
They then had the following companies to talk at the event about the NGP:
Capcom: They showed off Monster Hunter Portable 3rd and explained how the dual analog stick feels great. They also showed Lost Planet 2 on real time with the MT Framework Mobile.
SEGA: Showed a clip from the Yakuza: Of The End game to show folks that the NGP is powerful and can run Playstation 3 game by porting it to the device.
TecmoKoei: Showed off a Dynasty Warriors game by using the touch screen to attack.
Konami/Kojima Productions: Hideo Kojima himself showed up and showed a clip from Metal Gear Solid 4, which was simply ported to the NGP with no extra work, running at 20 frames per second. He then went on to say that his team is developing a game for both the PS3 and NGP where gamers can play the same game on both consoles and using the same save so that you can continue your adventure no mater what platform you’re playing on. More will be revealed at E3.
Epic Studio: They basically showed off Epic Citadel and Dungeon Defenders, which showed that the NGP can run Unreal Engine 3 and stated how the NGP is 4 times powerful than any mobile device they have worked with before.
Activision: Lastly, they just had some dude come up to announce that a Call of Duty game will be coming to the NGP (big surprise there).
There you have it folks. Did Sony fixed some of the problems you had with the previous PSP or does it seem like they are trying too hard? Personally, seeing how Sony is more of a tech company, they are trying to make this THE ultimate handheld device. Of course, with all this tech, one would wonder how much Sony would sell this product. Either way, with its launch pretty much a year away, I’m excited to see what else Sony will announce for the NGP.