While the rumors about an updated PlayStation 4 console — tentatively referred to as PlayStation 4.5 or PlayStation 4K — have been quiet for the last week, or completely dispelled when it comes to a new Xbox One model, retired BioWare co-founder Greg Zeschuk has spoken out against the idea, stating that it would make life very hard for game developers.
Putting it bluntly, Zeschuk says that trying to develop for two versions of a console would “be a gigantic pain in the ass that flies in the face of the purpose of consoles.” Just to be clear, an upgraded/new version of the PS4 has not been made official in any way at this point, but because the latest rumor states that such a console could see release by this October, many in the gaming industry are discussing the topic.
Speaking to GameSpot, Zeschuk explained, “The whole purpose of consoles is the set of requirements that you work against from a hardware perspective. To change that is complete lunacy.” One of the theories behind the “PS4.5” is that it would be able to run games in ultra-HD, and possibly feature better integration with the upcoming PlayStation VR headset.
But as Zeschuk is trying to point out, variances in hardware, even a few, make things very difficult on the development side:
“I just think it’s bad. I think, ‘lock it’ and let developers do their thing. But at the end of the day, if you can focus your development effort on one set of hardware requirements and target, you are going to get a better result. It’s easier than having to split it, adding more people, having to port things across.”
“It’s like dipping your toe back into the PC pool where you have to consider all these things. It was nice on console not having to consider like performance sliders. But it’s just crazy. I guess maybe [Microsoft and Sony] feel the need to.”
It seems Microsoft won’t be going down this path, however, as last week Microsoft’s Xbox chief Phil Spencer stated that he wasn’t “a big fan of Xbox One and a half,” and if they were to move forward it would be with a brand-new console.