Rumor: PlayStation 4 codenamed Orbis
posted on 03.28.12 at 02:19 PM EST by (@salromano)
Blocks used games, out holiday 2013, says source.

The next PlayStation is codenamed “Orbis” and will be released in time for the 2013 holiday season, according to a Kotaku source “not authorized to talk publicly about next-gen hardware, but [who] has shared correct information” before.

Kotaku notes that when combined with the name of Sony’s latest handheld, PlayStation Vita – thus making “Orbis Vita” – the meaning in latin translates to “the circle of life.”

Accessing Sony’s PlayStation developer site with the URL Orbis.SCEDev.net redirects you to the site’s main page. However, accessing the site via a URL such as PS4.SCEDev.net returns a 404. Considering its connection with the Vita’s name, it may suggest Orbis is the next PlayStation’s final name. Though, that’s only speculation, of course.

Inside the beast.

Developers are currently being told the system will boast an AMD x64 CPU and a AMD Southern Islands GPU, according to the source. Its GPU will be able to display games up to a resolution of 4096×2160. It will also be able to games in 3D in 1080p, whereas PlayStation 3 could only manage 720p.

“Select” developers have received development kits starting early this year. Around the Game Developers Conference early this month, improved versions of those kits were sent out. Toward the end of the year, finalized beta units will be shipped.

Going forward, not backwards (compatible).

Orbis apparently will not support backwards compatibility with PlayStation 3 games. According to the source, Sony has no plans to offer backwards compatibility.

Buy it new, or buy a trial.

Just as rumored with the next Xbox, “multiple sources” have said Orbis will block pre-owned games. New games will reportedly be available on either Blu-ray or PlayStation Network (full retail titles included). Discs must be locked to single PlayStation Network accounts, after which you can either play the game off disc, save it to your hard-drive, or download it free at a later date. Apparently, to play the game, you’ll need to be online the entire time.

So what of used games then? The source reports used game consumers will be limited to a trial mode or restrict content, and ask them to pay to unlock the full game.

  • NCloud

    I really hope these rumors [NO BC, No used games, Net Connection Required] are NOT TRUE.

    • rockman29

      @NCloud: The irony is, if such rumours would come true, is that the console which allows used games to be purchased would be looked at as having a great selling feature. I know I would look at it that way.

  • Sal Romano

    Really hope this ‘no used games’ thing for PS4/Next Xbox is false. I don’t buy many used games, but they’re convenient when I do. Also would rather not have to be online the entire time I’m playing something.

    • hush404

      @Sal Romano: Ditto. It’s getting a tad ridiculous if this kind of crap is really being considered. I can see another industry crash if they start getting too stupid with these measures. While I love bleeding edge tech and games… it’ll reach a point where console manufactures are going to be running such insane draconian DRM that I’m just going to have to quit gaming.

    • DrForbidden

      @Sal Romano: Not to mention that family members who share one console but have different PSN accounts will have now have to buy several copies of the same game…

  • Locksus

    I wouldn’t pay much attention to these rumors. I’d rather wait for an official statement from both Sony and Microsoft.

  • vertical09

    Ok, i can take no backwards compatability, but not being able to borrow/buyused games? F THAT!
    I dont care how high tech the thing is, if it requires the internet just to play a game and you cant borrow games from your freinds to play on your system, I’m not buying.
    Of course since it’s all rumors so far, i wont fly off the handle just yet, but if this happens to be true, goodbye sony, I’ll miss the jrpg’s you gave~

    • hush404

      @vertical09: Funny you say goodbye Sony, cuz if rumors are true Microsoft is on board with the same thing and you know PC publishers are inching ever so much closer to that. You’ll be out of luck period, not just with Sony.

    • Mech4Life

      @vertical09: Rumor are exactly that, RUMORS. Most of these rumors end up being bs. This same rumor popped up about PS3 locking out used games (prior to it’s release debut) and turned up entirely bogus. These same “reliable” sources also claimed that Microsoft was manufacturing a Blu-Ray compatible 360 for release in Holiday of 2008.

      Sony and Microsoft aren’t stupid. They know that going a “locked” route would be console suicide. The only way they’d be on board for a locked-out (used games) console, is if they’d want their consoles to fail.

      Take these rumors as a grain of salt. There’s ZERO tolerance for a locked-out console in this day and age.

  • mye89

    Well the no used game could work like that:

    Let say the game is on PSN for 30$, if you buy it used for say 15$ when you get home and put the disc in the tray there’s a pop up that says “hey if you want to play this game you have to buy an online pass for this game at 10$” with part of that 10$ going to the developer of the game. Then I’d be fine with it BUT on condition that:

    All game are on PSN, there price go down as time goes (so no 60$ game after 2 year) and you can re download stuff unlimited number of time.

    The no BC is crap, they could just make an emulator and sell it on PSN, I don’t want to have a bunch of console hock to my TV.

  • Zero

    I know this is all rumor, I’m not surprised. You can’t tell me we didn’t see this coming.

    So many articles about piracy and used games dominating gaming media these days.

    When the developers back away from developing games on specific hardware because of these things, changes will occur, like it or not. (Example = PSP )

    From what I understand, based on the rumors for the next consoles. Microsoft and Sony want to copy what steam does.

    You can play steam games without internet connection, but they do require you to log in every so often.

    It’s a form of DRM, but its rather soft, when compared to some of the always connected DRM tactic we have seen.

    The used game part of it is just sorta along for the ride. I think they see it as a win win.

    Publishers complain about used games and piracy more than anything else. I’m sure the big 3 get plenty of bitching when it comes to these things.

    The sucky things is, all of this anti piracy junk typically creates problems for legit customers, while the pirates bypass it easily.

    I agree with some of the other comments. I would have a hard time supporting a console like this.

    In short, anti piracy tactics are coming to consoles, and it was only a matter of time.

  • Malcolm Reynolds

    No BC is no big deal to me. I have 3 TV’s and 2 of them have PS3’s hooked up.
    When I buy a PS4 I will do so to play PS4 games.

    No one cried about not playing NES games on a SNES, SNES on N64, N64 on GC etc.

    Gamers are so self entitled now.

    The PS3 was hard to develop for due to the cell. It was also very expensive. The PS2 due to the Emotion Engine was similar in difficulty to develop for.

    Gamers and the gaming media haved b***ed incessantly this gen about lackluster versions of multiplat games while SOME devs (mostly the untalented lazy incapable ones) like Bethesda and Valve (until they hired a specific PS3 team and Gordo Newell groveled at Sony’s feet at E3 2010) complained about the unfriendly unPC like dev environment for years.

    Sony made sure the VITA was much easier to develop for and the launch SW shows that.

    It has been stated by multiple sources that Sony was abandoning the Cell in the next Playstation in an effort to make the architecture very easy to develop for as well as to be more cost concious from a company and consumer standpoint. No more $599 US Dollars.

    Common sense says NO CELL, no PS3 BC much like NO Emotion Engine meant no PS2 BC on PS3 and we all know the short lived emulation was a little suspect at best.

    Applying common sense to the steps Sony is likely taking leads even the mildly intelligent to the conclusion that we will not likely see BC but MS will no longer get the better running version of multiplat games.
    Without that small feather in their cap and likely a ZERO day headstart on Sony’s next console launch due to the fact that surely MS is no longer cocksure enough to skip QA again….well, considering Sony’s staple of amazing devs and numerous excellent franchises along with their willingness to back new IP while never abandining the core gamer and MS distinct lack of all those things….well I think its obvious how next gen will turn out.
    At least it should be but America has certainly proven this gen that you cant fix stupid.

    The “blocking of used games” is nothing more than the online pass all grown up. Does it suck? Yep.
    Will Sony be dumb enough to do it if MS doesnt? Nope.
    Either MS will do it and Sony wont further sealing MS fate to reside at the back of the pack or they both will do it and like Live fees, and RRoD replacements the masses of asses will accept it, make excuses for their preferred platform and go on the internet to cry about it all the while rushing out to gamestores money in hand ready to contradict their words with their actions.

    The “always online” sucks. But I will never be with out internet sans a power outtage so hopefully it wont be anything more than a minor nuisance if it is even implemented.
    Capcom learned that people hate that garbagewith Final Fight on PSN. Ubisoft or Capcom, cant remember, said they would never implement the “always online” DRM again.
    In my experience with multiple dead xbox’s I moved my HDD to the replacement systems multiple times and everytime I wanted to play a previously purchased xbla game I was required to be logged in to XBL. I heard they were trying to resolve the issue but up to the point I walked away from MS products for good in 2010 it had not been fixed.

    I said all that to say: Always Online required to play is not condusive to a friendly customer/Console maker environment and I seriously doubt they will implement this feature across the board.

    Regardless….I will continue to play games and buy systems and I know based on the past 3 gens from Sony that my favorite games will be provided through their platform.
    Viva La’PS4.

    • Zero

      @Malcolm Reynolds:

      I agree with this.

      “The masses will accept it, make excuses for their preferred platform and go on the internet to cry about it all the while rushing out to gamestores money in hand ready to contradict their words with their actions. ”

      This is the biggest problem in games today.

      Everyone wants to complain, but they proceeded to continue and support the very crap they complain about.

      And then you have a large majority of consumers who don’t give a shit. They could care less about what the hardcore gamer crowd is upset about.

      A great example is Call of Duty. Every year I see people comment about it, complain about all the recycling and shortcomings of the series.

      And then MW 3 comes out and look what happens, a ton of people go out and buy it.

      It’s no wonder niche genres are suffering so much in this day and age.

  • rockman29

    Why the heck are they going AMD when Nvidia just blew them away with the 600 series GPUs.

    Why Sony, WHY!? Did they miss the giant memo where 680 GTX is the BEST GRAPHICS CARD EVAR!?

    • Rafi

      @rockman29:
      Its still rumor but if that true, Sony might be wise to choose AMD GPU because they arrive more quickly for nanometer fabricate i mean like HD7970 is arrive early than GTX680 in term of 28nm. Or even Nvidia didn’t want to make GPU for console because they are really need to focus on PC GPU to beat AMD in so many ways.

      But i really want to see the true power of “Orbis” if that even happen cuz PS3 and 360 is only 720p native gaming resolution and they said its GPU will be able to display games up to a resolution of 4096×2160p. Maybe HD7970 Quad CFX or GTX680 Quad SLI ?

      • rockman29

        @Rafi: The fabrication process isn’t the only important thing though. It’s the total technology that goes into the package. The reason some fabs aren’t going to 28nm is because it’s still cost prohibitive (re: they want Nvidia and AMD to shoulder the brunt of the costs).

        And the important thing is that lowering this size is supposed to be akin to reducing costs AND heat dissipation AND power use….

        All of which were addressed in the 680 GTX. Take a look at the benchmarks and tests. The card is a holy grail to hit the consumer graphics market of which we haven’t seen since like the 9800 series from ATI (and that one had heat problems, where this new NVIDIA card has absolutely no drawbacks).

        I’m not even a graphics card fanboy or anything, I’m just saying… it would be beyond insanity to pick AMD over NVIDIA at this point in time, especially because a current mid-level card is probably what will appear in the PS4 (which is still pretty god damn powerful).

        “Maybe HD7970 Quad CFX or GTX680 Quad SLI ?”

        Absolutely not. I think that was a joke, but absolutely not. That is $2000 straight into the GPU budget. So…. no.

        And absolutely no to going to WQHD (4k2k) resolution. We have to appreciate that going to a higher resolution will become a huge weight on the backs of developers and will hinder the development of new games. Keeping games at 1920x1080p, the way all of our TVs are set currently and how they will be set for the foreseeable future (see: BluRay) is the way of the next generation. Look how long it took developers to really grasp 720p resolution. There is no way I would look forward to those growing pains again. I want to see real innovation in the actual graphics content and gameplay, rather than the resolution. 1080p is more than enough for my games. I’m sure PS4 will manage to add a lot of visual fidelity on top of making the graphics crispy clean at 1080p with all these newfangled AA and AF programs.

        Something half the power of a 680 GTX (e.g. a 660 GTX) will be more than enough for PS4, and way more than enough to deliver astounding graphics at 1080p. I’m always going to hope for more though, but I am really excited to move to a next Playstation honestly. I feel like I’m not going to get the HD experience from PS3 that I ever really wanted and I’m pretty tired waiting for some of the games on it.

  • http://www.youtube.com/tezchi TezChi

    For the last time developers – the Anti-Used Game stance is retail, business and economic suicide. Go through with such a contentious idea at your peril.

  • LordKaiser

    This is a load of BS! First of AMD is not longer the leader in the CPU market. Intel CPUs are the only one who can beat the Cell now and no PS3 compatible means no library and slow adoption. game registration means that retailers like Gamestop can refuse to sale their stuff and also means that people like me will never buy another console. It seems the industry want another video game crash.

    • rockman29

      @LordKaiser: AMD is definitely not even the leader in the GPU market either, not even close. They’ve only won two generations of graphics cards ever.