PlayStation President Shuhei Yoshida dropped a bomb, by hinting the possibility that there might not be a PlayStation 5 console. The information comes from a private conversation between Oddworld developer Lorne Lanning and Yoshida that took place in February last year.
According to Lorne in an interview with Game Informer Show, the conversation took place during a private dinner between the two at DICE 2015. It started with him asking Yoshida, ‘What does the PlayStation 5 look like?’ And he replied, “You mean if…”
The developer hoped that Yoshida would’ve repeated himself during their presentation together, but it never came up.
This revelation comes at an interesting time as there are rumours of a hardware upgrade in the works for PlayStation 4. This together with reports of an upgraded PlayStation “Neo”, supports the fact that there might not be a PlayStation 5.
The Oddworld developer is supportive of the idea of updated PlayStation 4. Yoshida’s comment could indicate the end of the traditional gaming generations and hardware cycles. As an alternative to the traditional models, gaming console could instead release a slightly upgraded version of its latest hardware, much like smartphones.
Traditionally, gaming consoles differ significantly from smartphones, which are updated on a yearly basis. Gaming consoles have a much longer cycle as they remain viable for 5-7 years, but with the report of an upgraded PlayStation “Neo”, this cycle could change.
Lanning said: “The idea that you’re going to release a piece of technology that’s going to last for seven years into the future is becoming, I think, less and less viable.”
Sony’s rival Microsoft have told fans not to expect a Xbox One and a half. However, there are rumours of a new Xbox prototype with parts that could be upgraded like a PC. This fits with the claims by Xbox boss Phil Spencer that it will eventually “come out with new hardware capability during a single generation.”
It seems that the future of gaming consoles is in flux and the absence of a PlayStation 5 would cement the paradigm shift.