PS4 NewsReport: PS4 Will Stream PS3 Games - PS4 News

Members Login: Register | Why sign up? | Forgot Password?

Report: PS4 Will Stream PS3 Games

The PS4 might not be backwards compatible...at least, now how we expect.

According to sources familiar with Sony's plans, the Wall Street Journal reports that the PlayStation 4 will be able to stream PS3 games over the Internet. This streaming service will also play new games stored on optical discs.

This is just one PS4 feature among others that is specifically designed to "bolster its position in the market," although they didn't go into further detail. However, you may recall that last year, Sony acquired streaming company Gaikai last year for $380 million and since that time, the Gaikai website has teased images from the Uncharted and Killzone franchises. Lastly, Sony has updated their PlayStation Meeting 2013 website to include a video called "PlayStation Evolution," so everyone's gettin' excited. It seems like the PS4 unveiling is only a few days away!

It'll be very interesting to see how people respond to the announcement.

Tags: ps4, playstation 4, ps4 backwards compatibility, ps4 bc

2/15/2013 11:05:43 PM Ben Dutka

Put this on your webpage or blog:
Email this to a friend
Follow PSX Extreme on Twitter

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Share on MySpace Share on Delicious Share on Digg Share on Google Buzz Share via E-Mail Share via Tumblr Share via Posterous

Comments (80 posts)

WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, February 15, 2013 @ 11:22:43 PM
Reply

Wait what? It's going to stream games over the internet from optical discs that it can't play? This is hurting my brain.

Agree with this comment 5 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

bigrailer19
Friday, February 15, 2013 @ 11:26:25 PM

Right?

I guess that would be a way to handle bandwidth issues and other factors I only understand when Highlander speaks, even then im lost.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Temjin001
Friday, February 15, 2013 @ 11:41:11 PM

I think what this means is that if you insert a PS3 disc into your ps4 the system will stream the data from servers to play the game.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

bigrailer19
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 12:13:15 AM

Like the old Netflix disc?

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Simcoe
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 10:05:46 AM

I like Temjin's explanation, popping the disc in proves to Sony that you "own" the game and therefore shouldn't have to pay to play something you already own. Hoping it'll work the same way with PS2 and PS1 discs too!

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 11:34:47 AM

Yeah that would be cool but I don't see how streaming games are suddenly gonna work well.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Temjin001
Friday, February 15, 2013 @ 11:42:03 PM
Reply

I guess that feature is better than nothing but streaming PS3 games will be a definite downgrade to just playing your games on a PS3.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:51:58 AM

That may not be true.
If Sony goes for a caching model with Gaikai, the games could potentially look and feel exactly as if they were being played on a local machine, or in this case, the PS3.

Since the DuelShock 4 is said to be nearly identical to the DuelShock 3, I doubt there'll be much of a difference at all.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Temjin001
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 10:23:50 AM

Have you tried something like onlive?
The controller latency in games, especially like racers, is noticeably worse. And see Onlive did well too mask it because the streamed games were running from a PC. PC games have measurably a lot less input lag for various technical reasons. 80 to 150ms lag in many traditional console third party titles was reasonably masked by streaming a PC version of the same game from Onlive. Inherently to send a response across a network and back presents a lot more latency than from a couch to console. But seeing that these games aren't PC games I find it really unlikely these streamed games will compare to the physical ps3 in your home. We haven't even started talking about how ugly macro-blocking looks on fast moving games either.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Temjin001
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 10:27:01 AM

and caching? caching as in memory directly accessed by a CPU for processing?
The ps4 doesn't have a cell processor among other things so that comment makes no sense to me.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 1:55:35 PM

Temjin001, yes I've used OnLive, and have had absolutely no problems with the service whatsoever. If anything, it feels as if it is being played on a local system, even when using the Microconsole, which has a traditional controller. If anything, the complex 360 degree movement of the computer mouse would cause more latency, as the user is able to move the mouse at a far faster pace than a game controllers analog stick.

As for caching, the 'cloud' services (Gaikai) would likely save a small portion of the game to the PS4's hard drive and/or RAM, which the PS4 can then use, in combination with emulation software, to play the game locally.
Every few levels a new portion or 'chunk' of the game will be downloaded and saved to the PS4, and the older already-played levels will be deleted. This way, the PS4 would save space, and the user would be able to load the additional levels or scenes without downloading them, as they would have already been downloaded to the console during your actual gameplay.

Me and Highlander are having a conversation about the possibility for the PS4 to support PS3 software via emulation. Everything *can* be emulated or converted, that really isn't the problem. The problem is creating an emulation technology powerful enough to convert code to a system vastly different than the one it was designed for. In theory, such an emulation program wouldn't be entirely out of the question, and once the general frame has been created, it would really only be a matter of converting various technologies used on the PS3 to be compatible with PS4 architecture. This would likely be done by hand on a game by game basis, but can also be done by flicking a sort of 'switch' that would basically rewrite code A to function as code B, and do so in a way that maintains general performance.

It's not impossible, just a lot of work for Sony to do. Still, this amount of work, although expensive in terms of hiring a team of dedicated and experienced programmers, is far, far, far cheaper than building the largest and likely most powerful cloud gaming network in the world.


Obviously Sony plans to do something with Gaikai, and I guess all we can do is wait until February 20th before we can actually get a glimpse as to what their plans truly are. Speculation only goes so far.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Temjin001
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 1:14:01 AM

wiiplay, the concept of streaming data into ram rather than from disc or HDD was explored with PS3 already. I remember Sony stating that leading up to the slim's release. they contemplated releasing an HDD'less PS3. They abandoned this idea for various reasons. Also, This is entirely different than the concepts behind Gakai or OnLive. Sony would'nt have purchased Gakai for that reason as the tech to achieve what youve suggested, network delivery of data, could be accomplished without Gakai.


Last edited by Temjin001 on 2/17/2013 1:15:48 AM

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

duomaxwell007
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 12:16:10 AM
Reply

Im sure it wont be free sooo charge me to play game si already have? umm no

Agree with this comment 6 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:54:29 AM

If you already own a physical copy of the game, I'm sure you'd be able to play it on your PS4 either for free, or with a PlayStation Plus membership.
I highly doubt Sony is going to force you to pay a monthly membership on top of initially purchasing the game, the system and/or PlayStation Plus.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 12:37:41 AM
Reply

Man, nobodies internet is gonna be powerful and reliable enough to make use of that sheeit.

Agree with this comment 6 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 10:03:44 PM

Mine would be. It's not the best, but 80mbps isn't bad. I could upgrade though.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 6:30:29 AM

Yeah, internet has come a long way. I personally have a 60 mbps connection, while most people have 5 mbps or higher.
Streaming isn't an issue for most people, the issue is latency and network reliability. Speed is there, but the reliability may not be.

I plan to get a 175 connection (down/up) later this year, so I'm all set for a streaming service, assuming Sony has enough servers to handle the load.

Last edited by wiiplay on 2/17/2013 6:32:16 AM

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiley_kyotee
Monday, February 18, 2013 @ 10:25:27 AM

I heard a radio commercial over the weekend from Comcast that stated they are going to have 200 Mbps service available to the public this summer. No price was given or if this will be for all or only limited markets.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Gordo
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 12:48:37 AM
Reply

Nope. So if I want to play my MGS4 full to the brim Bluray disk on my PS4 I will need to put the disk in and download 50GB over the next week!

Phew, my Internet provider is going to get rich!!!

Agree with this comment 2 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

JROD0823
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 1:51:31 AM
Reply

I would prefer this route.

Physical b/c is impractical, unnecessary, (everyone that has PS3, PS2, and PS1 games has at least 1 PS3 and 1 PS2 to play these games with already, or at least they should!) more expensive, (it'll jack up the cost of the system!) and dumb (keep your old consoles handy, it's not difficult!). LOL

All sarcasm aside, I think that if this turns out to be true, it will satisfy not only those wanting to play PS3 games on their PS4, but those who think that keeping costs down will draw in more early adopters/converts.

I hope they make it so.

Last edited by JROD0823 on 2/16/2013 1:53:56 AM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Zeronoz
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:37:24 AM

Why on earth would I wanna play a ps3 game on the ps4 when I still have a ps3 (+ rebuying what I have is against my policy). The games of the ps3 might stop coming but its worth as a blu-ray remains!

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:48:30 AM

I'd much, *much* prefer a backward compatible console. I don't want to pay to play games I already own, and I don't want to be dependent on the speed of a internet connection when I got all the data stored on a disc right there beside the console.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

JROD0823
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:08:24 PM

@Zeronoz,

You missed my point entirely, friend.

Read below on my reply to Beam for clarity on what I said above.

@Beam,

That's why I said that you should keep your old consoles if you want to play your old games in my original comment.

Why make the new consoles more expensive by adding b/c when you already have your old consoles to play games with?

To put it in perspective, that would be like asking Nintendo to have a separate slot and the chips onboard for the NES, SNES, N64, and Gamecube to play games that you still have lying about at home in the Wii U.

Do you see how asking for full b/c is just plain silly (and unnecessary)?

The streaming service can be something optional for people that want to be on the cutting edge of console capability, or that just want to get rid of the clutter of their physical media.

Just keep your old consoles, friend, it's just as easy to do!

Last edited by JROD0823 on 2/16/2013 3:16:13 PM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Zeronoz
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:33:36 AM
Reply

BY THE GODS! Is this "streaming" similar to video streaming? There`s no way on Earth my internet can handle that!! Just downloading a 4GB worth of files takes time, heck, I can`t even stream 360p youtube video without let it buffer first...

Agree with this comment 3 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:40:39 AM

No it's not. Problem is everyone associate the word "streaming" with one way media streams (Youtube, Spotify, Netflix, those services) and then automatically assume it's the same we talk about here.

It doesn't have to be, and I find it extremely unlikely that it is. You don't need a fully fledged gaming computer just to handle a video stream. It would be idiocy to build a latency dependent service in a high latency way.

This will however most likely mean that we will mostly be offered the 1st party exclusives, since it will require a bit of engineering in order to implement into the service and I'm not sure if the 3rd party studios will let them do that.
Time will tell!

Last edited by Beamboom on 2/16/2013 2:44:27 AM

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:42:29 AM

It's not the video stream that's the issue, it's the controller input lag for games that use real time controls.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:50:18 AM

We've been down this route before, Highlander. The controller input will be handled locally, as will the rendering.

Trust me on this one. There's no way whatsoever that the entire computing job will be done remote. No way, I say!


Last edited by Beamboom on 2/16/2013 2:52:36 AM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:57:43 AM

I agree with @Beamboom. Although I'm sure Sony could *technically* stream the game in its' entirety over the internet, similar to what OnLive has been doing. However, that would be far too costly for even Sony to implement, which is why a complete 'raw' stream is very unlikely. (at least, on a global scale)

The games will likely be cached onto the system, either in local storage or RAM, possibly a combination of the two. When you load a level, that level will be sent to and saved locally on your PS4, and when you've finished that level, it will then be deleted and replaced with a new level. Chances are, once you've progressed past a certain point, normally known as a trigger area, the next level will begin to download as to reduce the amount of loading between one level to the next.

Last edited by wiiplay on 2/16/2013 2:58:23 AM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:11:15 AM

Guys, if the game could run locally, you wouldn't need to stream it. If it has to be streamed you can't cache code locally, nor can you handle controller input locally. Beamboom, you of all people should know this.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:15:07 AM

@Highlander
Quote"Beamboom, you of all people should know this."Unquote

Hey, I take some offence to that statement, Highlander. :p I'm a video game developer, and operate a website hosting business. If anything, I of all people should 'know this'.

Still, I do have to agree with Beanboom here.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:26:37 AM

WiiPlay, I am a software developer also, so unless you have some inside knowledge that you're willing to break NDA over, the current understanding of the architecture of PS4 is that it will not emulate the PS3. If you would care to explain how it is that you can cache the PS3 game code and run it locally on the PS4.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:38:54 AM

Aha now *that* is an interesting question Highlander, one that is worthy of an article of it's own.

Cause, can we take for granted that in fact the PS4 is not, or can't be, able to run ps3 code even though Sony say so?
From a corporate point of view, what is more lucrative: To offer a *charged* service to run old code, or just let the consumer run his old code whenever wherever without any further income for your business.

A leading question, I know. But it is healthy to sometimes stop and ask ourselves, are we getting the *whole* story here. Or, are we dealing with a corporation who play by corporate rules?

The fact of the matter is this: A vast majority of all code in any given project is platform independent. Yes, platform *independent*.
All the stuff that handles the actual game mechanics, score system, character development, progression, storyline, all that stuff can be called "platform independent code".

Graphically it's either OpenGL or Direct X APIs, and that's that.
The audio API is the same across the entire board. You can connect a PS3 controller to a PC and it works. You can bind a mobile handsfree on the PS3 and it works. Ergo their API are standardized.
Things are a *lot* more standardized than consumers like to think, cause really, it is the only viable route to go.

What *is* platform dependent in a code is relatively speaking just a very few components, and typically focused on a few specific areas. Therefore, to write code who wraps around those few areas where platform specific code is involved, is not that deadly of a challenge. *Especially* on a machine that is significantly more powerful than the system the code is written for, it could be done with no practical loss of performance at all, compared to when that code is running on it's native platform.

So, what do we have here? A case of backward compatibility being technically impossible... Or a corporate, strategic decision?


Last edited by Beamboom on 2/16/2013 4:03:29 AM

Agree with this comment 3 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 5:15:05 AM

Beamboom, talk of OpenGl and whatnot is irrelevant to the task of emulating a PS3 with PS4 architecture to run a PS3 game of a game disc. we're talking about the ability to run the encrypted and signed executables, not recompile for a new target platform.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 4 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 1:53:18 PM

But encrypted data can be unencrypted on the PS4 side as long as they got the key? I don't understand what you mean here - you talk about encrypting the stream, right?

Agree with this comment 0 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:18:14 PM

*head explodes*

Agree with this comment 4 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 11:56:12 PM

I'm referring the the game executables for PS3 games beamboom. They are both encrypted and digitally signed. To run a PS3 game locally from a disc or downloaded, the PS4 would have to be capable of decrypting the executable and verifying the authenticity of the digital signature, just as the PS3 does, before actually running the code.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:41:48 AM
Reply

I don't see how that will work if the PS4 can't run the PS3 game, then the server is running it and sending the video. The problem is that the controls will be horribly laggy.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:49:36 AM

Unless they were to cache the game onto disk before the player loads the level, and loading each part in as the player progresses.
Caching the game would virtually eliminate the control lag (ie. latency) as you would be playing a local version of the game.

Agree with this comment 3 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:58:47 AM

read my post again. If they have to stream the game play, the game is NOT running on the console. If the game is not running on the console, no amount of caching will help you, the controller lag is caused by sending your controller input across the Net to the server where it's processed and the resulting movement is sent back to you as streamed gameplay.

I already have the game discs, why would I need to stream the PS3 games if the PS4 is capable of running the game itself and I already have the disc? The controller lag is inherent in a packet switched network - which the Internet is and always will be.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 2 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:02:06 AM

Highlander, I don't believe you understand how this caching technique really works.
You would be playing the game on your local machine, sending controller data to your local machine. Essentially, the game is being played locally, but downloading new and additional levels or areas at a dynamic level. For example, if you start up the game, the first few levels would be loaded. (assuming it's a small game). For this example, let's say three levels were cached onto the system. Those three levels are then playable instantly. Once you get to level two, a few more levels are saved to your local machine, and the first level is then deleted. Repeat this process, and you have a cached game.

The data itself comes from the cloud, but the game is technically being played locally.

edit:

As for the "I already have the disc" quote. I honestly do not know why they wouldn't just allow local disc-based play, where the games are read off of the disc.
The best I can come up with is the emulation software used. Possibly only a select list of games will function, so rather than having you attempt to play every PS3 game on the PS4, which could potentially cause glitches or bugs with the emulator, they only allow a select few to function via a controlled caching network.

Still, no idea why. That's just my own personal guess.


Last edited by wiiplay on 2/16/2013 3:06:41 AM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:10:19 AM

Another guess is, quite simply, this may be a premium feature for Plus subscribers. Having it operate through the cloud would allow Sony to determine who can and cannot play, or who has Plus, and who doesn't.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:13:42 AM

WiiPlay.

The PS4 will be an x86 based design, if the PS4 could emulate the architecture of the PS3 sufficiently to work as you describe there would be no need to use any form of streamed content for PS3 backwards compatibility, especially as PS3 games will continue to be made and sold for some time to come.

The PS4 can't and won't emulate the PS3 locally, so the fantasy world that you and Beamboom are living in will not exist.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 3 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:23:05 AM

@Highlander; if the games are truly being streamed, which I do not believe is the case, Sony would require hundreds of dedicated servers located throughout the world in order to provide a consistent latency-free service.
Although this isn't technically out of the question, as Sony could still launch within a small geographical area, such as United States, Japan and Canada. The likelihood of them restricting access to such a key feature based on ones location is very low. I mean, just imagine the media headlines if they did that. "Sony locks PS3 backwards compatibility to three countries" would be a common media trend for a very, very long while.

Let's face it, Gaikai is going to be used in some way or form. Either it be caching or true cloud-based streaming. It's coming, and I can only hope it'll be available via a caching method. This would allow for worldwide service, rather than just a select group of people based on where they live.

Now, if they did go for total cloud, imagine how many servers Sony would require to cover all of the regions the PS4 is sold. That would cost Sony far too much to do, even if they didn't expand straight away, they would be at a significant profit loss, and simply wouldn't make any money back on console sales or software sales alone.

Agree with this comment 3 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:28:10 AM

You can't cache what you can't run locally. If PS4 can run PS3 binaries locally, you do not even entertain the idiotic idea of game streaming when the games in question are still sold at retail.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 5 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:29:25 PM

@Highlander,
"the fantasy world that you and Beamboom are living in will not exist"
Why so aggressive? Calm down, we are only talking about technology here, not your family or something.

*Everything* is fantasy at this stage. No-one knows anything about how this service is designed, we hardly even know the hardware specs of the console!
We are all just having a friendly conversation about something we all find interesting, speculating about how this might be designed. In all friendliness.


Last edited by Beamboom on 2/16/2013 3:33:34 PM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 11:36:02 PM

So, that's a "no, I can't come up with anything" right Beamboom? You and WiiPlay enjoyed contradicting me, and have put forward no basis for that contradiction.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 2 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 1:07:09 AM

I have been on topic in all my other posts, Highlander. This is not a fight, it's a plain normal, on-topic discussion. We discuss different theoretical solutions. And if you really, seriously after all these posts still don't see no basis for our thoughts and ideas, then that is just how you work.

I just think it is so unnecessary to use that tone. It would be nice if we didn't have to tackle these stabs from you whenever a discussion reaches a certain point.

We all know how you yourself react when it comes to insults so please, some of that same consideration in return would be appreciated. It's just so unnecessary.

Last edited by Beamboom on 2/17/2013 1:15:04 AM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 7:43:37 PM

Beamboom, you need to learn the differnce between calling an idea idiotic and calling a person an idiot. One does not infer the other. I said that the concept was idiotic, not that WiiPlay or yourself were.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:48:15 AM
Reply

So, a more mainstream version of OnLive?

Not entirely sure what to think of this news.

Gaikai was never really a widespread platform back when it was a demo service for PC games. I just hope that Sony managed to expand Gaikai's reach, as if this rumor proves to be true, they'll have to have servers all over the world, and not just restricted within a single country or group of states / regions.

Unlike OnLive, when I used to demo stuff through Gaikai, I would get an unplayable amount of lag caused by the latency between me and the Gaikai server. Unless Sony has introduced a couple hundred servers, if not more, all around the world. Well, I just don't see how this could ever be a success, and the latency may end up ruining the experience.

Now, if they were to cache a portion of the game onto the PS4, and continue to load in new areas as the player progressed, that may create an experience with no lag, as you would essentially be playing the game locally. However, this would likely create far longer loading times, depending on your internet connection. A good portion of the level would have to be cached before you can even start playing, which can take quite a bit of time to do.


Whatever happens, I can only hope they do it properly. Caching it would be their best option here.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:55:29 AM

Streaming/caching of code is not only the best option - it's the *only* option as far as I am concerned.

The thing here is you need an extra middle layer who looks ahead and cache *while* you play - not only during "loading screens". This is the core job of the streaming service.


Last edited by Beamboom on 2/16/2013 3:02:31 AM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:04:51 AM

Neither of you are getting this. If they are providing backwards compatibility via Gaikai, then the game can;t run locally, so you can't cache any of it locally. If you could, that would mean the game could run locally, and you'd just insert the disc and have at it.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 4:05:28 AM

... Read my lengthy post above for a reply to that, Highlander. :)

Also, since the code comes from the server, could the streamed code have been recompiled for this new system, using the libraries on that system?

Open your mind, Highlander! Think how it *could* have been solved instead of only seeking arguments for how/why we must be wrong.
This is an interesting discussion, let's focus on solutions instead of arguments!

Last edited by Beamboom on 2/16/2013 4:26:53 AM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 5:27:32 AM

I'm not seeking arguments to prove you wrong. I'm simply pointing out simple facts.

If the PS4 can not run PS3 binaries, there is no purpose in any kind of code caching at all since nothing of the game will run locally. Do you have anything to say that negates that? No, I thought not. If the game will not run locally because the PS4 can't execute the PS3 binaries, then it has to run on a server and gameplay has to be streamed. That means that controller input processing will be handled on the server end which unavoidably introduces lag - even if there are hundreds of regional servers, if you have to go past your local ISP router to hit the game server the lag becomes sufficient to affect fast action games.

If the PS4 can run PS3 binaries, then caching code would work if you really, really wanted to run PS3 games on a PS4 without the game disc. But since the PS4 will have both BluRay and a local HDD; what is the point in streaming code and game assets only to cache them temporarily? when the gamer either already has the game disc, or can buy the game on PSN for download, why bother streaming it as a solution to BC?

I'm not out to prove you wrong or argue. Neither you, nor WiiPlay have offered any real reason to suppose that the PS4 would be capable of executing PS3 binaries in a full software emulation of the PS3. Neither of you can explain or rationalize why you would use a streaming model to run PS3 games - assuming PS4 can handle the emulation - when you can far more readily download the game to the HDD, or buy the game at retail.

Stop being stuck on proving that streamed games can work, in other environments streaming game code to the native console is a clear possibility, and I understand how that works very well. Ultimately it reminds me of the ancient dream of diskless workstations - which proved to be utterly unworkable and worthless in any realistic environment. Instead of trying to prove that game streaming can work on a give platform, look at the realities of running PS3 games on a PS4. There are only two ways it can go, either the PS4 can emulate a PS3 or not. If it can't you can't stream the code to it and cache it for local execution. If it can, you can stream the game code and cache it locally, but there are already two delivery methods for games that consumers are happy with - so why push consumers into a streamed solution with it's own inherent compromises?

Agree with this comment 2 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

xenris
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 12:40:25 PM

@Highlander

What if by caching a small amount of the game, the PS4 could somehow make up for its lack of PS3 Binary abilities?

Basically you would have a whole system that is supposedly more powerful than the PS3, dedicated to running only a small portion of the game, like the first level.

Perhaps they have found a way to cache levels and get the PS4 to emulate that one level but not the whole game? Using a combination of caching and streaming?

Or perhaps they have figured out some sort of black magic voodoo to get this to work somehow but then you are right the question is why do we need to stream it why couldnt we just put in out PS3 discs?

Unless streaming the game was way way WAY cheaper to entice people to use it perhaps?

Also for the record I know exact what you are saying Highlander about the emulation etc. I don't know a lot about programing I am just throwing out some ideas for ways they might be able to do this.

Personally I mostly agree with you. If this is like Onlive it will have terrible input lag. If it doesn't then why can't we just play our PS3 discs?

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 1:40:00 PM

The PlayStation 4 could technically play PlayStation 3 games, even though the architecture of the new console is vastly different from the last.
Emulation of 64 bit programs running on a 32 bit operating system has been done, but not at a level that maintains the programs original intended performance. Still, this type of emulation is entirely possible, just like how one entirely different operating system can emulate a system from a different era, using vastly different technologies and codecs. (ex. Windows programs running on a Macintosh)

The question isn't 'if' it's possible, it's if Sony really wishes to include this type of emulation with their new console. There's nothing truly limiting them from doing so, and emulating certain graphics and digital technologies would be fairly easy to do, that is, once you've got the basics figured out. If you can manage to emulate a certain shader technology, and get that to function at a playable level, that shader will work at a universal level, across all games. That is to assume that all games use the same shader version, and have it configured in the same way. Even if the shader is vastly different but based on the same condec and technology, it's possible to change the values of the shader so it's similar, if not identical, to the shader tested with the emulation software, thus enabling the game to function on PS4 hardware.

Obviously the level shading is just one piece of a game, and only a small aspect of the graphics technology. However, if you manage to get one thing to work, what exactly is preventing Sony from modifying the other technologies used in a video game to work as well?

As for a valid reason Sony would require caching, rather than simply allowing for you to play the game off of the disc directly? Well, aside from the expected Plus requirement for this backwards compatibility, the game that's being played is likely a modified version of the original, as to function on PS4 hardware. (via emulation)
It's unlikely for every game to be supported, but the ones that are will not look or function in the same way as the original PS3 version, due to changes to the graphics engine or other aspects of the game taken out or modified by the emulation software.

That being said, this is all nothing more than pure speculation. The technology allows for PS3 games to be emulated on PS4 hardware, so caching games to the PS4 is feasible on a technological standpoint. However, offering total streaming of these games, and if done properly with a low-latency network (ie. tons of servers to cover a very wide coverage area) streaming full PS3 games could work amazingly well for most individuals. OnLive, the first cloud gaming platform, works extremely well in regards to latency. I personally do not experience any input lag or visual artifacts when playing, unlike some of the others on this website who claim to have had problems with OnLive, I personally find the service to work flawlessly.
So, streaming full video games without lag is entirely possible, and with Sony's resources, it may become a worldwide occurrence. (OnLive has only three servers in the United States as well as one server in the United Kingdom, yet most gamers with decent connections can play without any lag, even if they reside within a 'no coverage' zone, such as Germany)
As for Gaikai, I've noticed an exceptional amount of lag with their service. I can only hope Sony improved their network for the PS4's launch.


I guess we'll all get to see what Sony plans to do with Gaikai. Either caching or streaming, it's a welcomed feature I will personally enjoy using.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 1:50:21 PM

There's no reason to stream code that can't be run on the machine and noone says so, Highlander. That is just too obvious to state.

Let's use the elimination method here: We all seem to agree that a solution where everything is run server-side is not a good solution - for all the reasons you yourself mention. None of us seem to believe in this alternative.
So we strike that theory off the notepad. At least for the sake of considering the alternatives. Agreed?

Ergo, this service must be designed differently - it is the only logical conclusion.
This is not me being "stuck on proving it can work" - it is just me trying to explain how it can work since you seem so hesitant in believing it even is an alternative.

What I am suggesting, is that indeed the code we talk about here *can* be run on the PS4. And thoughts around this is what I discuss in length further up here (the post starting with "now *that* is an interesting question Highlander").

So to your question as to "why": I also touch that topic in my lengthy reply further up, but to reiterate: I think they do it cause it is a business opportunity. Simple as that. It's corporate logic that is at play here. Sony has invested huge money in Gaikai. Why would they not want to route customers that way?
It's better to charge for something, than to have the customers run something for free.

It might also mean that the PS4 can't run the PS3 games straight off the bluray-discs. That *some* modifications are required. But those modifications can be done before it is pushed on the stream server. It is a viable solution.

But it's true as wiiplay say: All we can do at this stage is speculate. I just have a hard time picturing Sony rolling out a gigantic server side solution that requires server parks across the entire globe. I don't see that happening!


Last edited by Beamboom on 2/16/2013 2:08:33 PM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 11:53:10 PM

WiiPlay, 64-bit vs 32-bit has nothing to do with this at all. For a start, the CellBE is a 64-bit processor, not 32-bit.

You're talking about emulation, and I don't honestly believe that you understand how a binary emulation is performed. You're also making the same mistake that Beamboom is and discussing this as if the games themselves would be modified to run. That's not how PS2 games are handled on PS3, nor is it how PS1 games are handled on any PlayStation.

PS1 hardware is emulated completely in software, that's true on PSP, Vita and PS3. The PS2 incorporated some PS1 hardware to assist with BC. The early PS3s incorporated PS2 hardware because Sony were unable to emulate the PS2 sufficiently well to be compatible with game discs without hardware assistance in the form of the PS2's chipset, and later the GPU core, which the emotion engine emulation was handled in software. However once the PS2 GPU ASIC was removed from the PS3, there was no more backwards compatibility, and it has not returned. The PS2 classics sold via PSN are in fact the original games with a purpose built emulator that has been configured specifically for that game. This is not the same as the HD remasters which is taking the original game and retreading it with the new libraries on the PS3 and rebuilding it.

The emulation used in PS2 classics is not generally applicable to PS2 games, it's based on a complete profiling of the game in question and configuring and optimizing the abilities of a PS2 emulation to handle it. However thanks to the specific GPU design of the PS2, there are operations that cannot be emulated because there is no similar functionality that can be mapped to handle it. Games that use such operations will not work in the emulator.

Emulating the PS3 in software is not as simple as creating a binary compatible emulation of the PPE core, you must also emulate the SPEs and their interconnect bus. You also must emulate the functionality of RSX and provide the high speed interconnect between Cell and RSX. The single precision floating point performance of the SPEs on a cellBE is not that far off what mainstream processors today can muster. It's difficult to properly emulate such an architecture because of the overheads inherent in emulation.

Beamboom, you can't dynamically break up a game's executable and cache portions of it to run on the local system and have other parts run on the server, not without completely rebuilding the game. That's just nonsense to suggest. I'm not being aggressive, I'm pointing out that you're wrong, and you don't like that.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 3 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 1:34:15 AM

Highlander, I think he used the 64bit code on 32bit architecture just to illustrate how it is possible to emulate across very different architectures and technologies, in response to the question if it would be possible to emulate across the ps3/ps4 architectures.

When it comes to how it was emulated on earlier platforms I think the clue this time around is the streaming, not the emulation. In order to be able to stream the code I'm thinking they would need to modify the games *some* - but not because of the emulation. They didn't need to do that on the earlier Playstations cause the games were still stored locally and executed like they would have been on their native platforms.
It's just a thought, I'm thinking out loud. But the reason for the modifications would be for the streaming, not the emulation.

In regards to your comment to me:
Of course you can't break up a games executables into a full client/server model just like that. Again I feel that it is a bit too banal to have to state, just like how we can't execute binaries on platforms it can't run on. Everyone in this discussion knows this. No-one needs that explained. It actually confuses me how you seem to think we are unaware of this. It's child's knowledge.

However there are other thinkable ways of breaking up tasks between computers, and the client/server infrastructure is already there via the stream layer. We've just not gone into such level of detail yet and I don't think this is the right time for that. This would be more interesting to doodle ideas around once we know more about this solution - *if* it is more than just a media stream.

**

But let me try to summarise so far, if I may:

You are convinced that this streaming technology must be all server-side computing with the console just playing the role of an ultra-thin client doing nothing but displaying the end result. The PS4 could - in this setting - just as well have been a tablet, or a smart TV. That is, in your view, the only thinkable solution. Furthermore you think it is a bad solution due to unavoidable latency issues.

You completely rule out the possibility that this streaming service is in any way built how we suggest.

Is this a correct summary of your view?


Last edited by Beamboom on 2/17/2013 12:10:52 PM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 7:47:48 PM

No, actually not correct. I rule out the possibility of the PS4 locally processing the game code.

The streaming model you are trying to push is completely pointless if the PS4 can locally process the game code. There is no point in gimping backwards compatibility by forcing games to stream if the player has the game disc or download already. All that does is add an additional point of failure.

But I will say it again, the PS4 does not - based on the specs we know - have the capability of emulating the PS3 in software. There is no point or need to speculate about any streaming service that runs code locally since the device will be incapable of doing so.

Final point. Emulating the PS3 architecture ion an x86 system is not a trivial matter. I've written a binary compatible processor emulation before, it was a nice simple ARM2 core being emulated, and that was difficult enough because you have to properly emulate the interrupt handling of the CPU as well as any quirks of the hardware. I had it easy compared to writing an emulation of a Playstation console, I didn't have to worry about getting the timing of the emulated CPU correct to the cycle. Emulating the PS3 is a very complex and compute heavy task, and not something easily attempted. It's also not in any way like running Windows apps on Linux or whatever other OS emulation you or WiiPlay might like to mention. OS emulation happens at a far higher level in the application code stack. Emulating a game console means emulating it to the register level and being 100% binary compatible.

Last edited by Highlander on 2/17/2013 7:57:55 PM

Agree with this comment 0 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

___________
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:49:13 AM
Reply

i seriously cant see $ony using gaikai for ps3 games, the cost they would have to put into it to get it working efficiently way, way, WAY overrides the customers it would be able to facilitate.
i cant even stream a 5 minute video for f*cks sake!
yesterday i wanted to watch IGNs preview of remember me, sat there letting it load for 6 f*cking hours than came back to watch 20 seconds, than loading again!
if i cant stream a single 5 minute video how the ^%$# am i going to stream a GAME!?

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Vivi_Gamer
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:13:16 AM
Reply

Oh god I hope not... If it is anything like 'Onlive' it'll be a disaster! sure it was impressive but the image quality suffered with streaming blotches which made the resolution look poor.

But obviously the bigger concern is what about all the PS3 games I have already paid on disc?

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:41:04 AM

I've had absolutely no problems with the quality of OnLive. The games I've played on there are at the same graphical quality (around the same, lower/higher in some areas) as the PS3, and I have noticed no visual artifacts or input latency.

OnLive is, if anything, proof that something like this is actually feasible.

Last edited by wiiplay on 2/16/2013 3:42:04 AM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Simcoe
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 10:02:13 AM

I think the day that Sony announced that they had acquired GaiKai, I'd thought I'd see what Sony got themselves into. I had always been very, very skeptical of these types of "streaming" gameplay type services (only really heard of OnLive up until then). Well without any special software to download or install, and using only my firefox browser I was able to play a very beautiful 10-15 minute game (SP) of Crisis 2. I tried looking for any input lag issues or latency in the high-quality visuals I was looking at: everything was very fast and responsive. From my own personal experience that day, I became a believer and haven't questioned GaiKai's ability since then.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wiiplay
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 3:38:30 AM
Reply

Ben: I think you intended to write 'not' instead of 'now'. :) (first paragraph)

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Hand_of_Sorrow
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 4:48:43 AM
Reply

could this be sony's solution to stop us from playing used games?

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

tes37
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 9:49:18 AM
Reply

I think I'd just keep a PS3 around, instead of dealing with some Gaikai service. Hopefully by the time they quit making PS3's, I'll be over the backwards compatibility issue. I might complain for the first couple of years, but eventually the PS4 will make me forget about the PS3.

Agree with this comment 4 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:18:31 PM

right on

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:33:08 PM

Me too.
And I will *not* pay to play games I already own regardless of price. That's just a principle.

Agree with this comment 4 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

JROD0823
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 1:43:58 AM

Thank you tes, someone who has the right mindset about this whole b/c issue!

You, World, and Beam could be used as examples for others that are a bit more hardline about demanding b/c.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 3:20:56 PM

Yeah. I still have a PS1, 2 and 3 (obviously) kicking around. I'm not sure I'd get rid of any of them permanently. Not sure I'd keep the streaming service if it's extra.

I'm still really interested to hear what they have in mind, though. Even if it isn't for me.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

ulsterscot
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 2:49:48 PM
Reply

so if i bought a ton of ps3 games (all the cod's, bf, kz etc) through psn and downloaded them rather than have the disc - will I be sol when it comes to the ps4?

i would think if you bought them on psn - its as much proof of purchase as sony could as for.

Agree with this comment 4 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

PHOENIXZERO
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 10:35:03 PM
Reply

As expected... The PS4 wouldn't have remotely close to enough horse power to emulate PS3 games without at a bare minimum including Cell and Sony isn't going to increase production costs any more than they have to.

Game streaming kinda sucks unless you have really low latency but Sony wasn't going to increase production costs for a feature that becomes less and less utilized as time goes on. What will happen is your PSN games will still be tied to your account and you'll be able to access them through Gaikai, physical games will go into your PS4 and be read by the hardware and probably authorize streaming access but it won't read the disc beyond authentication.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Highlander
Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 11:53:46 PM

Thank goodness someone out there 'gets' it.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 2 down Disagree with this comment

JROD0823
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 2:37:05 AM
Reply

Slightly off topic for this article, but I had an idea that could possibly eliminate the need to stream in order to play altogether.

Could Sony reconfigure the way the Gaikai servers process code to possibly "emulate" the way the Cell's architecture crunches code?

That way when you stick a PS3 disc into the PS4, the blu-ray drive reads the disc, but instead of the X86 chip processing the game code, it gets bypassed to the servers to process the game, and then it would be translated back through the PS4's GPU and onto the screen?

Is this even feasible from a technical standpoint?
If so, then would this be too costly for Sony to do, and would this cause just as much lag as streaming?

If this is possible to do with discs, then maybe it could be possible with games downloaded onto the hdd as well?

I know this idea is a really lame shot in the dark, and I don't personally care about b/c or streaming games since I keep my consoles, but there are others out there that it would benefit if it could work.

If it can't, then it's of no loss to me, just thought I'd try and throw something out there for those that really want or need b/c.

I'd appreciate a reply from Beamboom, or Highlander, or wiiplay, or one of the other fine folks in this community that can give me an honest assessment of my idea.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

taus90
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 5:17:09 AM

Well in that case Gaikai server would have to recode the said PS3 game to a code which PS4 will understand and then stream it back, that is a possibility (e.g PS2 classic HD collection) but highly unlikely And also PS4 will not have have any kind of PS3 emulation. I agree with highlander emulating SPE,PPE XDR RSX is just out of reach. Even if it was possible, then there will be no need to stream the game or "cache" it on to PS4, u would have just need to pop the PS3 disc and let PS4 handle the emulation, just like PS3 did with PS2 with limited backward compatiblity, gaikai would be out of the picture.

Last edited by taus90 on 2/17/2013 5:19:52 AM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

JROD0823
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 3:50:59 PM

Thanks for the reply taus, I figured it would be a super long shot anyway.

It will be interesting to hear just exactly what Sony has in store for Gaikai.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Ather
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 5:20:52 PM
Reply

So it's basically Nintendo now. Buy older games digitally to play on the newer system.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Doomsquirrel
Sunday, February 17, 2013 @ 7:09:10 PM
Reply

Ok, from what other people are saying it sounds like you use your PS3 disk as a key to play the game off of a server, does that sound right?

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

dbyzforce
Monday, February 18, 2013 @ 11:04:30 AM
Reply

Everyone keeps forgetting that many hsi providers also cap data usage and something like Gaikai for bc purposes may not be feesable, especially for people who cannot get decent hsi where they live (ie rural areas).Better solution is a more expensive deluxe model with included Cell/RSX like old 60GB PS3 for those who want that...

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

dbyzforce
Monday, February 18, 2013 @ 11:04:40 AM
Reply

Everyone keeps forgetting that many hsi providers also cap data usage and something like Gaikai for bc purposes may not be feesable, especially for people who cannot get decent hsi where they live (ie rural areas).Better solution is a more expensive deluxe model with included Cell/RSX like old 60GB PS3 for those who want that...

Agree with this comment 0 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Leave a Comment

Please login or register to leave a comment.

Our Poll

Did Destiny live up to your expectations?
Yes it did and then some!
Not quite but it's still great.
No, it's only okay.
Not at all; it's a huge disappointment.

Previous Poll Results