French gaming accessory distributor Nacon opened preorders for its Revolution 5 Pro controller for PS5, PS4, and PC. The officially licensed, polished-looking product is listed at $199, about half the cost of a digital-edition PlayStation 5. But if you can’t stand stick drift, maybe that’s a small price to pay.
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For a while, it’s seemed like no modern controller could escape stick drift, or phantom joystick movement that affects in-game actions. Nintendo offers Switch owners free repairs for its freewheeling Joy-Cons, and Sony similarly covered drifting DualSense controllers under its warranty. But there are few permanent fixes for any controller.
Nacon, then, attempts to cut the problem out at the root. Like a growing number of other manufacturers (and Sega back in the ‘90s, with its Saturn and Dreamcast controllers), it uses contactless magnet technology, powered by a phenomenon called the Hall effect, to track the movement of its analog joysticks and triggers. This is in contrast to the degradable potentiometers and springs living in a typical Joy-Con or DualSense controller.
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“This asymmetric controller offers revolutionary features to improve precision and gaming performances,” Nacon writes on its website. “Exceeding all expectations with its technology optimized for the PS5. Enjoy an enriched configuration interface, improved and ergonomic modular design, all wrapped in premium materials for unparalleled comfort.”
Aside from utilizing the magnetic Hall effect for its sticks, the Revolution 5 Pro controller also uses magnets to supply its trigger stops. The company touts its odd-looking d-pad for apparently being made in collaboration with its sponsored fighting game player, which it suggests imparts “exceptional control and precision.” As for the battery, $199 gets about 10 hours of playtime, which is comparable to a DualSense controller (that gives up around the 12-hour mark).
As with many of these high-end “pro” or “elite” controllers the Revolution 5 Pro has various modular pieces you can swap in as you’d like. It offers “four profiles saved per platform, three sets of weights, three stick sizes, three sets of stick heads, one external microphone jack and no less than 60 customisation options,” according to Nacon. So, go crazy.
The expensive controller, available in white or black, will start shipping in October.
Updated: 9/29/23, 12:10 p.m. ET: This article previously included pricing information based on the European list price of the controller, €229. Nacon has since announced that the U.S. price will be $199.99.
You can no longer buy last year’s hit soccer game, FIFA 23. Nor any other older game from the famous Electronic Arts sports franchise. At least, not digitally.
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The publisher has pulled every FIFA game that was previously for sale on the PlayStation 5, Xbox, Switch, Steam, and Epic Games storefronts. The move, first noticed by industry analyst MauroNL, comes ahead of the launch of EA Sports FC 24, the newest game in the series which was re-branded earlier this year after EA abandoned the FIFA licence amid ongoing renewal negotiations.
While some DLC packs for the games, which date back to FIFA 14 on modern platforms, are still available on the storefronts, the games themselves are either missing or don’t show an option to purchase. On Steam, where FIFA 23 has accrued over 100,000 user reviews and a rating of “mixed,” a notice reads: “At the request of the publisher, EA SPORTS™ FIFA 23 is unlisted on the Steam store and will not appear in search.”
It’s not clear if the games will return at some point in a different form, or whether their removal will be permanent. EA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
FIFA games, and now EA Sports FC, come out every year with updated rosters but often minimal changes to the underlying modes and mechanics. EA Sports FC 24, which arrives September 29, currently has a 76 on Metacritic, with GamesRadar calling it the “most playable” version of the series in years, while Eurogamercalled it “business as usual.”
Chief among the improvements is a streamlining of Ultimate Team, the series’ loot box mode where players collect packs of cards and then use them to construct hyper-talented all-star squads. According to GamesRadar, EA has improved the feel of the mode on the field, and added an “Evolution” feature for leveling up players’ skills, as well as mixed in star female players who were previously kept separately.
Ultimate Team is the real reason many players shell out for a new version of FIFA every year, abandoning the game they paid $70 for just 12 months prior. It’s also been supremely lucrative for EA, which rakes in more money from microtransactions than the sale of the new games themselves. Though apparently not enough to make the publisher want to pay the International Football Federation the $1 billion it was reportedly requesting to renew the FIFA brand.
The head of PlayStation is stepping down, Sony announced in a press release today. Jim Ryan, Sony Interactive Entertainment’s CEO, is retiring after just four years on the job. The massive shakeup in leadership comes as the PlayStation 5 breaks sales records and as Sony has doubled-down on prestige blockbuster games like The Last of Us Part 1 and Marvel’s Spider-Man 2.
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“After 30 years, I have made the decision to retire from SIE in March 2024,” Ryan said in a statement. “I’ve relished the opportunity to have a job I love in a very special company, working with great people and incredible partners. But I’ve found it increasingly difficult to reconcile living in Europe and working in North America.”
Ryan will officially leave the position in April, 2024. Hiroki Totoki, Sony Group Corporation President, COO and CFO, will help with the transition and take on the role of interim CEO of PlayStation once Ryan leaves, and will help with the search for his successor. The news was first reported by Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier.
A 30-year veteran of Sony, Ryan was promoted to the top PlayStation job in 2019 after a re-organization saw head of CEO of Worldwide Studios, Shawn Layden, step down, and President of Worldwide Studios, Shuhei Yoshida, transition into a more background role working with indie game developers.
As head of PlayStation, Ryan oversaw the launch of the PS5, which despite pandemic-era shortages, is now on pace to break sales records thanks to an ongoing lineup of first-party exclusive blockbusters like Horizon Forbidden Westand God of War Ragnarök. His tenure also included the launch of PS VR2, as well as a major pivot by the subscription service PS Plus to more directly compete with Xbox Game Pass’ Netflix-like library of games.
The unexpected departure comes just a couple months after Sony signed a 10-year agreement with Microsoft to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation following the tech giant’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Despite a vicious regulatory fight in the U.S. with the Federal Trade Commission and in the UK with the Competition and Markets Authority, both of which included testimony by Ryan, the historic deal is likely set to close beginning in October.
“Jim Ryan has been a great contributor to our industry and a fierce leader for PlayStation,” Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer tweeted. “I wish him the best in what he does next. Thank you for all you’ve done for the community over the last 30 years, Jim.”
Here’s the full press release:
Sony Group Corporation and Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) today announced that SIE President and CEO Jim Ryan has made the decision to retire in March 2024 after almost thirty years with the PlayStation business. To support Mr. Ryan in his transition, Sony Group Corporation President, COO and CFO Hiroki Totoki will assume the role of Chairman of SIE effective October 2023. Effective April 1, 2024, Mr. Totoki will be appointed Interim CEO of SIE while he continues his current role at Sony Group Corporation. Mr. Totoki will work closely with Sony Group Corporation Chairman and CEO Kenichiro Yoshida and the management team of SIE to help define the next chapter of PlayStation’s future, including the succession of the SIE CEO role.
Jim Ryan joined Sony Interactive Entertainment’s Europe-based legal entity, Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe (SIEE) — which was then Sony Computer Entertainment Europe — in 1994. Since then, he has held a number of senior positions at the company including President of SIEE, Head of Global Sales and Marketing at SIE and Deputy President of SIE since January 2018, before being appointed SIE President and CEO.
Comment from Kenichiro Yoshida
“Jim Ryan has been an inspirational leader throughout his entire period with us, but never more so than in overseeing the launch of PlayStation 5 in the midst of the global COVID pandemic. That extraordinary achievement made by the entire SIE team has been steadily built on and PlayStation 5 is on track to become SIE’s most successful console yet. I’m immensely grateful to Jim for all his achievements. Respecting Jim’s decision to finish his long career at Sony leaves me with an important decision regarding his succession given the significance of the Game & Network Services business. We have discussed intensively and have determined the new management structure. We aim to achieve Sony Group’s further evolution and growth through bringing even greater success to the Game & Network Services Business.”
Comment from Jim Ryan
“After 30 years, I have made the decision to retire from SIE in March 2024. I’ve relished the opportunity to have a job I love in a very special company, working with great people and incredible partners. But I’ve found it increasingly difficult to reconcile living in Europe and working in North America. I will leave having been privileged to work on products that have touched millions of lives across the world; PlayStation will always be part of my life, and I feel more optimistic than ever about the future of SIE. I want to thank Yoshida-san for placing so much trust in me and being an incredibly sensitive and supportive leader.”
Comment from Hiroki Totoki
“I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to Jim Ryan for his outstanding achievements and contributions over his 30-year career at Sony, including the great success of launching the PlayStation 5. The PlayStation business managed by SIE is an essential part of Sony Group’s entire business portfolio. I will work with Jim and the senior management team closely to ensure our continued success and further growth. I am also looking forward to creating the exciting future of PlayStation and the game industry together with everyone at SIE and its business partners.”
Update 9/28/2023 2:02 p.m. ET: Added a tweet by Phil Spencer.
A teaser for a Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic remake coming to PlayStation 5 nearly stole the show at Sony’s September 2021 showcase. But reports surfaced last year that the project was already in trouble. Now Star Wars fans have noticed that Sony recently deleted tweets about the game and has hidden the trailer from its official YouTube channel.
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Word that the teaser trailer had been removed from PlayStation’s channel first began to spread on September 28 on the Gaming Leaks and Rumors subreddit. Twitter user Crusader3456 later shared a thread showing that Sony’s tweets about the teaser from the original 2021 PlayStation Showcase had also been deleted. The only official mention left appears to be a single tweet promoting multiple games from the livestream.
It’s possible the highly anticipated KOTOR remake is still alive and this is just some weirdness on the part of Sony’s social media department. It also might be the case that the project, which debuted as a PS5 exclusive, has all but been canceled amid ongoing development issues and massive budget cuts at parent publisher Embracer. Sony and Embracer did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Bloomberg reported in July 2022 that the developers has spent a significant amount of time and resources on a proof-of-concept demo that failed to past muster at a review meeting. Several senior leads were let go from the project, and the following month development on the KOTOR remake shifted to Saber Interactive in Europe (Aspyr is based in Texas).
Fast-forward a year, and parent company Embracer is instituting cuts across its sprawling portfolio, including canceling games and shutting down entire studios like Volition, after reportedly losing out on a $2 billion investment from Saudi Arabia. Aspyr also announced in June that it would bail on shipping a promised DLC pack for its Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2 remaster on Switch. A fan is now suing.
A successful remake of KOTOR would be a lynchpin project for any publisher, especially as new Star Wars shows flood Disney+ every year. It would also be an incredibly ambitious and challenging endeavor for even the best studio. It’s not yet clear if Embracer has given up hope on the project. Fans certainly still haven’t.
Update 9/29/2023 11:54 a.m. ET: A spokesperson for Sony said the KOTOR remake trailer was delisted over licensing issues. “As part of normal business, we delist assets with licensed music when the licenses expire,” they told Kotaku in an email. The only music in the trailer seems to be the main Star Wars theme which is owned by Disney.
Cyberpunk 2077’s 2.0 update and Phantom Liberty DLC expansion has completely revived the open-world RPG, and, for many, finally turned it into the immersive sci-fi blockbuster they’d been dreaming of based on all those E3 trailers. But more fixes are still on the way. An upcoming 2.01 patch will address corrupted saves on PlayStation 5 and other issues.
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CD Projekt Red previewed some of the patch notes for the smaller hotfix on Friday, September 29, noting that the actual update will include even more changes once it finally arrives. In addition to solving the corrupted save issue on PS5, the studio is also promising improved framerate performance in Dogtown, Phantom Liberty’s big new area, on both PC and console. A bunch of mission bugs are also getting taken care of.
Here’s everything in the preview for patch 2.01:
The distorted effect caused by selecting a specific dialogue option when talking to Johnny at the end of Automatic Love will no longer persist on the screen.
V will no longer die in The Heist by falling through the elevator when riding to the 42nd floor with low FPS.
Fixed an issue where the UI could show controller inputs when playing with keyboard and mouse.
Made it possible to properly switch to arms cyberware by cycling through weapons.
Gig: Breaking News will be properly triggered after approaching the quest area.
Vehicle radio volume will be adjusted so it’s not too quiet when compared to other sounds in the game.
Addressed the issue of corrupted saves on PlayStation by increasing the maximum save file size limit. Note: this won’t fix the saves corrupted before the update. If you’re experiencing the issue, keep a working save (e.g. resave it as manual save) till 2.01 arrives.
Performance improvements for both PC and consoles, especially in the Dogtown area.
Some PS5 players began to report issues with their save files shortly after beginning Phantom Liberty. The problem seemed to target those who went into the expansion with save files from before the 2.0 update (versus players who started completely new playthroughs). The save data apparently started to become damaged after the second mission “Hole in the Sky,” with no clear workarounds beyond loading earlier save files and trying again. Fortunately, it sounds like the issue will be taken care of soon, though CD Projekt Red points out that players will want to make sure you hold on to a “working save” until 2.01 releases “soon.”
Despite Cyberpunk 2077 shooting back up the sales charts and becoming one of the most played games on Steam again, CD Projekt Red has confirmed that these last batch of updates will conclude its post-launch support for the game. The studio is currently pivoting resources back to its next open-world Witcher game, with a smaller team beginning early concept work on Cyberpunk 2077’s sequel.
The video game industry is currently facing a big wave of layoffs, and even contract developers at PlayStation first-party studio Naughty Dog aren’t immune. Kotaku has learned that the maker of hits like Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End and The Last of Us Part IIhas begun cutting contracts short for dozens of workers.
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Layoffs were communicated internally at the Santa Monica, California-based studio last week, according to two sources familiar with the situation. Departments ranging from art to production were impacted, but the majority of those laid off worked in quality assurance testing. The sources said at least 25 developers were part of the downsizing. Full-time staff do not appear to have been part of the cuts. Naughty Dog’s headcount was over 400 as of July.
Sources tell Kotaku that no severance is being offered for those currently laid off, and that impacted developers as well as remaining employees are being pressured to keep the news quiet. Their contracts won’t be officially terminated until the end of October and they’ll be expected to work through the rest of the month. Sony did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Despite hit ratings for the recent HBO adaptation of The Last Of Us, a multiplayer spin-off for the zombie shooter based on the first game’s Factions mode has struggled in development. Bloomberg reported in June that Sony had diverted resources away from the project following a negative internal review by Bungie, the recently acquired live-service powerhouse behind Destiny 2. One source now tells Kotaku that the multiplayer game, while not completely canceled, is basically on ice at this point.
The layoffs also come just a few months after studio co-president Evan Wells announced his retirement at the end of 2023 after working at Naughty Dog for 19 years. Neil Druckmann, creative director and lead co-writer on both the most recent Uncharted and The Last of Us games, as well as a contributor to the HBO show, revealed a restructuring of the studio leadership around the same time.
Naughty Dog isn’t the only major first-party studio to face layoffs this year. The Xbox studio currently in charge of Halo, 343 Industries, was hit hard by mass layoffs at Microsoft back in January. Major gaming companies like Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, Epic Games, and Embracer have all added to the tally in recent weeks and months, with many developers increasingly unnerved by the constant influx of more bad news from colleagues and peers.
Back in April, Sony announced that it plans to sell a record-breaking 25 million PS5s in the current fiscal year.
While the rerelease of Red Dead Redemption via a new port on August 17 of 2023 was great news for fans of the original and those who missed out when the game originally shipped 13 years ago, it was missing some desirable features. At $50 bucks with no option to run at a more modern 60 frames per second, the rerelease felt a little lacking. After a recent update, however, the PS5 version of the RDR port now offers the option to play at 60FPS.
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Fans of Rockstar’s open-world Western have long wanted a more modern way to play the game on current hardware. Originally on Xbox 360 and PS3, the game released in 2010 and unlike its celebrated sequel, Red Dead Redemption 2, had not seen a release on PC or more modern consoles until the recent digital rerelease on PS4 and Switch in August. That rerelease sells for $50 (a physical version is expected on October 13) but lacked the option to run at a higher framerate, and also doesn’t include the original release’s multiplayer modes. The rerelease doesn’t seem to be headed to PC or Xbox consoles, and only works on PS5 via backwards compatibility as a PS4 title.
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In 2010, console performance often hovered around 30 frames per second (though more demanding games often brought that number far lower on Xbox 360 and PS3). Today, cutting-edge games like Starfield, for example, still aim to hit a reliable 30 frames per second, but rereleases and remasters of older games frequently include options to run at higher framerates. Red Dead Redemption’s lack of an option to take advantage of the higher processing power of more recent consoles set it apart from other such rereleases.
Of course, it wasn’t long before hardware enthusiasts were able to demonstrate that it very well could have included such an option. Running on a hacked Nintendo Switch, Red Dead Redemption was more than able to reliably reach 60 frames per second.
Thankfully, getting such performance out of John Marston’s epic adventure isn’t limited to those with cracked consoles anymore. The game’s recent 1.03 patch on PlayStation includes an option in the game’s settings for 60FPS on PS5.
Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be any indication of more features or future releases for the 2010 open world classic.
After some previous leaks, Sony has officially announced a new, sleeker version of the PlayStation 5. The smaller console comes out in November and will have the same specs as the current PS5 consoles already out on store shelves.
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With little fanfare or teasing, on October 10 Sony revealed details and images of two new slimmer PS5 models which will, eventually, replace the current versions of the popular console.
In the US, Sony says the new, smaller PS5 will cost either $500, for the version that comes with an Ultra HD Blu-ray disc drive, or $450 for the digital-only version without a disc drive. This appears to be a price increase over the current digital-only PS5, which at the moment costs just $399.
What’s different about this new PS5?
According to a blog post from Sony, the new PS5 has “been reduced in volume by more than 30%” and apparently weighs less, too. This time around there are four separate cover panels that can be removed and swapped out, with the top panels sporting a glossy finish and the bottom panels staying matte, like with the current PS5.
Last year, rumors claimed that Sony was going to sell a new version of the PS5 that would let you add a disc drive. This detail was backed up by leaked info and images of a new, smaller PS5 that hit the web in August. Those rumors (and the leaked pics) were authentic, it seems, as Sony confirmed today that folks who buy the new slimmer PS5 digital edition can later add a Blu-ray disc drive. This separate add-on will cost $80 in the US, which makes going this route more expensive than just buying a new PS5 with a disc drive pre-installed.
Internally, the slim PS5 will come with 1TB of storage, an increase over the only 800 GB available in the old models. That appears to be the only real difference inside the machine. So don’t expect a PS4 Pro-like upgrade of the PS5 with this new slimmer variant.
Noted in the blog post, Sony says this new version of the PS5 will become the only model available “once inventory of the current PS5 model has sold out.”
The new PS5 launches in November. Here are prices from around the globe:
U.S.— PS5 with disc drive – 499.99 USD| PS5 digital only – 449.99 USD
Europe — PS5 with disc drive – 599.99 EUR | PS5 digital only — 449.99 EUR
U.K. —PS5 with disc drive – 479.99 GBP | PS5 digital only 389.99 GBP
Japan — PS5 with disc drive — 66,980 JPY (includes tax) | PS5 digital only – 59,980 JPY (includes tax)
Sony revealed the long-rumored “slim” models for the PlayStation 5, and while they are a lot lighter than the existing consoles, the specs haven’t really changed. What has changed is the price, however. The company announced the new all-digital PS5 will be priced at $450 instead of $400.
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The new “slim” PS5 with a detachable disc drive will remain $500, the same as the launch model. But the all-digital version will be getting a price hike, despite being 30 percent smaller, and weighing 24 percent less, than its existing counterpart. Once inventory for the larger launch models is all sold out, Sony says these new versions will be the only ones available to buy.
The detachable disc drive will be $80 to buy separately, meaning if you do buy the all-digital model and hope to upgrade later it will actually cost you more than just getting the $500 disc-ready version from the jump. It’s a surprising pricing strategy given that Sony makes better margins on digital game downloads, the only purchases owners of the all-digital model can make. The new PS5s won’t come with a vertical stand in the box either. That will cost $30 extra.
Usually game consoles get cheaper the longer they are on the market, but reduced supply during the pandemic and a spike in inflation rates last year led Sony to actually raise the prices on its consoles in most of the world in 2022. Now it appears those price hikes are getting sneakily introduced to U.S. customers as well. Sony and competitor Microsofthave both raised the prices of their Netflix-like subscription libraries as well.
Sony said earlier this year that it plans to sell a record-breaking 25 million PS5s in its 2023 to 2024 fiscal year. It’s tried to achieve that in part through discounted bundles like the God of War Ragnarök one that was marked down by $50 earlier this year. A new Spider-Man 2 PS5 bundle includes the upcoming blockbuster for $10 off the sticker price. The sales will likely help the company sell through its existing stock of launch units, paving the way for the new slim models to become the default moving forward.
Update 10/10/2023 2:54 p.m. ET: Added information about the PS5 slim stand.
Sony’s cloud gaming efforts are starting to ramp up. PS Plus subscribers will be able to start streaming big-name games like Spider-Man: Miles Morales and the Resident Evil 4 remake directly to their PlayStation 5s in the coming weeks. The company also hints that PS5 cloud gaming might be coming to other devices, like smartphones, at some point in the future.
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“Starting this month, we will begin launching cloud streaming access for supported PS5 digital titles within the PlayStation Plus Game Catalog and Game Trials, as well as supported titles in the PS5 game library that PlayStation Plus Premium members own,” the company wrote over on the PlayStation Blog today. This new feature goes live in North America around October 30, and will be exclusive to the Premium tier of PlayStation Plus, which is now $18 a month or $160 a year (Sony raised the price last month).
Though remote play, which allows PS5 owners to stream games from their console to smartphones and PCs, has been around for a while, this new cloud gaming feature will let paying subscribers stream games to their PS5s from Sony’s servers and play them without downloading. Here are some of the games Sony said will support cloud gaming at launch, with more being added later on:
Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales
Horizon Forbidden West
Ghost of Tsushima
Mortal Kombat 11
Saints Row IV
Resident Evil 4
Dead Island 2
Game trials will also be available to stream, including Hogwarts Legacy, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and The Callisto Protocol. Streamed games will support resolutions ranging from 720p up to 4K, as well as 60fps and HDR output where applicable. Players can also take screenshots and record video clips up to three minutes long.
While the quality of game streaming still varies a lot, especially based on the speed of your home internet, it can be a major convenience when it comes to trying games out before starting a lengthy install process or quickly dipping into a live-service game like Destiny 2 to finish a daily or weekly challenge. As blockbuster game file sizes have ballooned to over 100GB, juggling installs has become an annoying minigame in and of itself. Cloud streaming is one way to alleviate some of the frustration.
Cloud gaming of most of the Game Pass library has been widely available on Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One for years now, and competing services like Nvidia’s GeForce Now provide the same functionality on PC. It’s nice to see Sony finally catching up in that regard. As The Verge reported earlier this year, the company’s job listings point to a major new push to invest in and grow its cloud gaming capabilities. PS5 owners appear to finally be seeing some of the benefit of that.