Rumor: The PlayStation 4 is codenamed Orbis
Orbis. In Latin, it means "circle". In English, it just sounds neat. And, if Kotaku's source is correct, it is also the codename for Sony's successor to the PlayStation 3, the mystery console currently known as PlayStation 4.
This bit of info, as well as a few more regarding the console, comes "from a reliable source who is not authorized to talk publically about next-gen hardware but has shared correct information with [the publication] before," according to Kotaku.
Aside from the codename, the source said that Orbis will launch in the 2013 holiday season. Also, the predicted specs for the console include, at the moment, an AMD x64 CPU and AMD Southern Islands GPU. Kotaku notes that Orbis' GPU will be capable of displaying games at a resolution of up to 4096x2160 (far surpassing the needs of the most recent HDTV sets) and will be able to play 3D games in full 1080p, as opposed to the PS3, which can only go safely up to 720p.
Interestingly, the source said that "select developers" have already received dev-kits at the beginning of the year. Revised kits were sent out earlier this month around the time of the Game Developers Conference.
Like Microsoft's successor to the Xbox 360 (currently known by the name Durango), Orbis will supposedly come with some sort of restriction on used games. The source described it as working something like this: once a Blu-Ray disc is inserted into an Orbis, the console locks that game to a PSN account. The game can then be pegged as "downloaded" from the PSN so that it can be re-downloaded at a later time.
But what happens if you trade the game in? Kotaku states if a disc is traded in after being locked, the customer who then buys it will be limited in what they can access. While the sources were a tad "unclear" on how things would work on that end, it is believed that gamers who buy used Orbis games will be stuck with a trial mode or something like that, and the only way to overcome that is to pay a fee that would, basically, unlock the full game.
Such a strategy would allow outlets like GameStop to continue selling used games, while also making major publishers happy, as they would no longer have to implement their own approaches to the matter, like online passes, for example.
Sony, in typical Sony fashion, has responded to the Orbis rumors with "we don't comment on rumors or speculation." As usual, we'll just have to wait and see.
A writer, journalist, and aspiring storyteller, Peter Grimm has been gaming since the days of the Nintendo 64, and reporting on the goings-on in the World of Gaming since late 2011. His base of writing operations is located within the void between Here and There, or so he would have you think.
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