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PlayStation 4: What we want to see

Here's our list, but what do YOU want?

The PlayStation 4 may be years away according to Sony's forecast of a ten year lifespan for the PS3. But, as more an more developers claim to be pushing this generation's tech to its limit, it wouldn't hurt to have a speculative peek into the future.

Granted, THQ CEO Brian Farrell might think that a PlayStation 4 is the last thing we need right now, but we're dreamers and Farrell's a party-pooper.

Here's what we want to see in Sony's next console. Nay-sayers may leave now.

DISCLESS
First of all, let's get rid of these discs now before the children of the future creep up on us and start laughing at our old-hat technology.

While the Blu-ray might still have plenty of room for games to wriggle about on, it's a finite space and, if developers want to keep making bigger and better ideas, one day those ideas are going to start outgrowing their flat homes.

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We see this one as a bit of inevitability. With more and more being packed into DLC packs, talk of games being released in episodic bursts and even full on FPS games being distributed entirely digitally, we're already part way down the road.

And don't worry about download speeds, if the PlayStation 3 is supposed to have a ten year lifespan, by the time the PS4 comes to town we're expecting some pretty broad broadband.

When that happens, developers will be limited by little more than how long gamers are willing to leave their consoles on, and we all know gamers will happily leave their consoles on for a very long time.

DEV FRIENDLY
What's that developers? You're just about getting to grips with programming for the PS3? Oh good, it's only taken the best part of four years.

Wait, that's not fair. The truth is, it isn't the developers' fault that it's taken so long. Yes the PlayStation 3 is the most powerful console in terms of raw power, and it has had some pretty sterling exclusives, but it's no secret that exploiting the PS3 potential is tough. That needs to be different next time around.

The problem was that the PS3 was developed in relative isolation before being dumped in front of developers. Like Pandora's box, it was up to the studios to work out how to unlock the hidden potential.

It's simple, get a lot of developers on board early on, not just to make games for this new beast but to throw in their two pennies about how it should be made. They know the PS3, they know what makes it great and what makes it a chore, we bet they've got a few ideas of their own about how it can be improved.

PLAYSTATION TRIO
Sony's already confirmed plans to enter the mobile market and, if developer utterances are anything to go by, the PSP2 is fully formed and waddling around.

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That means that pretty soon we're going to have three PlayStation products - a phone, a handheld and a beefy console - all performing slightly different functions. That doesn't mean that the trio should ignore eachother though.

Combined, they can be a much more interesting package. We're not just talking about the PSP2 acting as a rear-view mirror either, we want trophies synced across PS4, PSPhone and PSP2 (for goodness sake Sony, trophies for PSP!) and games saved automatically to handheld devices when in WiFi range.

Oh and how about this for a cheeky punt: Let's get cross-game chat going and, if friends are online and logged on to the PSN, we want to be able to talk to them with our PlayStation Phones.

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