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Playstation Meeting 2011: Sony unveils PSP2, codenamed ‘NGP’

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The worst kept secret the games industry was today blown wide open when Sony officially unveiled the long anticipated sucessor to their PSP handheld.

Codenamed Next Generation Portable or ‘NGP’ for short, Sony Japan head honcho Kaz Harai took the stage and declared that the handheld would ship ‘this holiday season’ and that it would include boast a revolutionary control system, location-based entertainment, social features and augmented reality features.

In terms of the nitty gritty details, we’ll start with how the thing looks.

Aesthetically, the handheld is far more conservative looking than the recent leaked photos would suggest; eschewing the PSPGo design almost entirely in favour of a design that has far more in common with the PSP-2000/3000 models.

Next up are the thumb sticks. There are two of them. /cheer. In addition to the fact that we now have two analogue control methods the devil is in the details here as they are described as “micro analogue sticks”, which are raised in a similar fashion to the DualShock pad, instead of the PSP-style nubs. As well as this, there are the usual smattering of the traditional face buttons you would expect to see on a piece of Playstation hardware; Start/Select buttons, Home buttons and so on and so forth.

The long rumoured rear touch panel also turned out to be true and is exactly the same size as the five-inch screen, allowing the location of your finger to be replicated exactly on the screen. As a result of this, through using both the front and rear panels in unison, it’s possible to create “pinching motion”, which apparently has useful gameplay applications. In addition to these control methods, the device also contains the exact same gyro sensor and accelerometers as the Playstation Move; widening gaming possibilities even further.

In regards to the screen, the internet rumour mill scores yet again with Sony confirming that the 5inch OLED screen would boast a resolution that would be four times that of the original PlayStation Portable and promises a pleasingly wide viewing angle “perfect for users who like to lie down while playing games”.

In terms of visuals and raw power, Sony again have confirmed the rumours; saying that the PSP2 can effortlessly display ‘PS3 quality visuals’ and to prove their point showed a video montage that included Uncharted, LittleBigPlanet and Killzone. Very nice indeed.

Onto storage. Like the PSPGo before it, NGP will invaribly interface completely with not just the PlayStation Store, but also with the PlayStation Suite – an Android-based store for PlayStation content which obviously allows for a massive bredath and choice of gaming applications. The machine has a physical media slot for New Game Media, which as far as I know, is a flash memory-based card with the potential for higher-capacity versions later on.

This thing looks like an absolute monster and Eurogamer have the first picture of the device that can be seen by clicking on the link below:

In addition to all of the above, the machine will also utilise 3G for mobile data download and streaming alongside traditional bluetooth and WiFi connectivity.

Written by bitsnark

January 27, 2011 at 7:12 am

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