It’s finally happened. At a PlayStation conference in Tokyo, Sony announced a new portable system that will succeed the PlayStation Portable. The PSP2, codenamed by Sony as the “New Generation Portable” or the NGP, features some exciting new upgrades from the PSP.
Some of these new upgrades include dual analogue control sticks (not nubs from the original PSP), a five-inch touchscreen OLED display with a huge resolution of 960 x 544. It also includes a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 CPU, GPS, a rear-touch-pad, an accelerometer and gyroscop (similar to the PlayStation Move), a compass and a front and back camera as well as Wi-Fi and 3G connectivity.
The CPU is also being self-described as “the most advanced” in it’s class. Engadget also noted that a cut-scene taken straight from the PS3 version of Metal Gear Solid 4 was shown, rendered in real-time, playing at 20FPS, which is astonishing.
The console doesn’t use UMD – a la the PSP go – but will still have physical and digital copies of games using a new flash memory card.
[update] The flash card will be dedicated to software titles and can store DLC and the game save data directly on to the card. This new system will allow SCE to provide higher capacity cards in the future.
Games that were previewed at the conference were Killzone, a ‘Reality Fighter’ game, LittleBigPlanet, Resistance, and Uncharted. A short demo of Uncharted shows how the touchscreen of the console can be used by moving Nathan, the main character of the game, in a path drawn. Also demoed were Little Deviants and Hot Shots Golf, all using the aforementioned features that the PSP2 will have.
It doesn’t use the XMB user interface (from the PSP and PS3), instead using a new UI called LiveArea, which are vertical homescreens with icons and social features (PSN). You can go to LiveArea in-game without losing game-progress and chat via the PlayStation Network. It also has trophies. ‘Nuff said.
[update] Sony Computer Entertainment will begin a “phased rollout” from the end of 2011. More details for Australia, including pricing, will be announced “soon”.
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Terence Huynh edited this report.