What if consoles could let you suspend and resume a custom save state? Sony's PlayStation 5 might actually revolutionize how save states are handled.
A recently published Sony patent could hint at a new era of save states, customization, and overall user control on the PlayStation 5. The new feature is kind of like the Xbox Series X's Quick Resume functionality with a twist: Instead of the OS automatically bookmarking the segment you last played, you can actually set the save states yourself.
The patent, which is titled Dynamic Interfaces For Launching Direct Gameplay, refers to the save states as "templates" and basically outlines a new kind of save that's not just limited to gameplay. Users can set the console to boot to a multiplayer menu, for example, or directly into the last-played game segment that's been marked. Imagine being able to boot up right into a boss fight without having to run through the entire level again, or get another try at a tough puzzle.
The patent covers a lot of bases and the idea has a wide variety of potential. The most interesting one, though, is being able to automatically store a save of a specific game segment on your SSD that can be accessed for later use. The spectrum of potential use cases also includes PlayStation Network and PlayStation Now, and isn't just limited to offline play.
This specific patent seems very closely related to that extremely innovative demo patent that Sony filed a bit ago. This new feature would dramatically evolve PS Network services alongside the PS5's launch.
That previous demo patent basically allows users to create their own slices of gameplay demos and share and upload them to the PlayStation Network. The idea is to give users the ability to record interactive gameplay sequences that can be played by others online. You'd be playing someone else's character, in someone else's playthrough. It'd be a literal replay in every sense of the word.
This new interface would almost assuredly tie into the demo infrastructure. The interface would simply be the gateway to the content and lay it out in an expansive UI for gamers to launch, create, and share their saves--or templates--with others.
A system for directly launching interactive content, the system comprising:
a network interface that establishes a session with a user device over a communication network, wherein a set of templates is provided to the user device in the session, each template defining a different activity within an interactive content title and linking to a starting point of the corresponding defined activity within the interactive content title;
and a processor that executes instructions stored in memory, wherein execution of the instructions by the processor identifies the activity defined by the selected template, the identified activity associated with an identified interactive content title, and and launches the identified activity within the interactive content title at the starting point linked to by the selected template.
A non-transitory computer-readable medium having embodied thereon a program executable by a processor to perform a method for directly launching interactive content, the method comprising:
establishing a session with a user device, wherein a set of templates is provided to the user device in the session, each template defining a different activity within an interactive content title and linking to a starting point of the corresponding defined activity within the interactive content title;
receiving a selection from the user device specifying one of the provided set of templates; identifying the activity defined by selected template, the identified activity associated with an identified interactive content title;
and launching the identified activity within the interactive content title at the starting point linked to by the selected template.
We know something like this is absolutely possible on the PlayStation 5's powerful 825GB PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 NVMe SSD.
The new solid state drive can stream data to other system components at up to 5.5GB/sec, meaning load times will be instantaneous thanks to massively accelerated asset delivery. The SSD sports a custom 12-channel flash memory controller and a custom I/O block with hardware-based decompression built right into the silicon, allowing for streamlined and ultra-fast compression/decompression of textures, files, and data across the 256-bit bus with its 448GB/sec memory bandwidth to the 16GB GDDR6 RAM.
Developers also have more control how data is stored (via compression), how it's processed (via the new ultra-fast delivery pipeline manifested by the I/O stack and synergized hardware), and how it's overall managed (via potent and easy-to-use OS capabilities).
With this kind of power and the flexibility of the OS architectures that underpin it, the PlayStation 5 could very well offer this kind of feature. I expect this to tie into Sony's own advanced Quick Resume functionality but to push it even farther thanks to the PS5's faster SSD--and to make it more dynamic via PSN integration.
One thing to remember with patents is that it's all theoretical. There's no confirmation Sony will use any of this. It's also worth noting the patent was filed in September 2018, and only just now published on March 2020.
The PS5 will release in Holiday 2020, and it may cost $499.
Check below for more info on everything we know about the PlayStation 5 so far:
PlayStation 5 specs and details:
- Custom SoC with second-gen Navi GPU, Zen 2 CPU
- 8-Core, 16-thread Zen 2 CPU at 3.5GHz
- Navi 2X GPU with 36 CUs on RDNA 2 at 2.23GHz
- Ultra-fast 825GB SSD with up to 9GB/sec speeds
- Support for 4K 120 Hz TVs
- Ray-tracing enabled
- 8K output support (for gaming)
- Plays PS4 games, BC is on a title-to-title basis
- Separate games that ship on BD-XL Blu-ray discs
- New controller with extensive haptic and tactile feedback
PlayStation 5 Coverage:
- Sony's PS5 talk wasn't enough--for next-gen, seeing is believing
- Only PlayStation 5 next-gen exclusives will tap SSD's full potential
- PlayStation 5 may play thousands of PS4 games at launch
- PS5's boost mode is so powerful that some PS4 games can't handle it
- PS5 won't play PS1, PS2 or PS3 discs, 100 PS4 games supported at launch
- Understanding the PS5's SSD: A deep dive into next-gen storage tech
- PlayStation 5 won't use memory cards, supports third-party SSDs
- PlayStation 5 specs: 10TFLOPs Navi RDNA 2 2.23GHz GPU, 3.5GH Zen 2 CPU
- PlayStation 5 SSD speeds hit 9GB/sec with custom 12-channel controller
- PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X ray tracing is easily scalable for devs
- Report: PlayStation 5 Pro and base PlayStation 5 coming in 2020
- 60FPS on next-gen PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X 'is much easier'
- PlayStation 5 specs confirmed by Sony: 10TFLOPs Navi RDNA 2 2.23GHz GPU, 3.5GH Zen 2 CPU
- PlayStation 5 could use Samsung's 980 QVO SSDs
- PlayStation 5 is beating Xbox Series X in dev kit form right now
- Hardly any devs are making next-gen PS5, Xbox Series X games
- Sony working on new horror IP for PlayStation 5
- PlayStation 5 devkit UI possibly leaked
- Leaked PlayStation 5 concepts show weird X-shaped case
- Sony's first-party PS4 exclusives are coming to PC
- PlayStation 5's new DualShock 5 may be usable on PS4
- Sony skips E3 2020, has two major events planned for February
- Next-gen console exclusives will be few and far between through 2021
- PlayStation 5's biggest features have yet to be announced, Sony says
- PS4 has sold over 1 billion games and 106 million consoles
- PlayStation 5 backward compatibility should support every PS4 game
- Sony reveals the PlayStation 5...logo
- New trapezoidal PS5 render is an expensive accident waiting to happen
- A $399 PlayStation 5 will conquer next-gen
- PlayStation 5 to outsell Xbox Series X in 2020, analyst predicts
- PS5 may only enhance PS4 games, legacy PS1, PS2 and PS3 games unlikely
- PlayStation 5 prototype dev kit console gets V-shaped clean
- Sony: The future is coming at CES 2020
- PlayStation 5 GPU: 9.2 TFLOPs with 36 custom Navi compute units
- PlayStation 5 GPU emulates PS4, PS4 Pro with special modes
- PS5, Xbox Series X SSD may use software-defined flash to boost speeds
- PS5's SSD is 'exceptionally powerful,' may beat Xbox Series X speeds
- DualShock 5 renders show new trigger design, USB-C, ergonomic shell
- PlayStation 5 to support 8K gaming, Sony confirms
- New PlayStation 5 renders show off radical different design, again
- Leaked PlayStation 5 ad prices console at $1,000, is totally fake
- Sony seeks a new Head of Strategy for Worldwide Studios
- Leaked PlayStation 5 devkit photos show new DualShock controller
- PS5, Xbox Scarlett SSD may use Optane-like ReRAM to supercharge speeds
- NVIDIA G-Sync monitors to improve PlayStation 5 and Xbox Scarlett
- PlayStation 5: Everything We Know So Far
- PlayStation 5 confirmed to have 8C/16T Zen 2 CPU from AMD
- PS5, Project Scarlett may use Samsung's 6th gen V-NAND NVMe SSDs
- PS5 backward compatibility confirmed, will play PS4 games
- Sony's next-gen PlayStation 5 has 4K 120Hz output support
- PS5, Project Scarlett to hit over 10TFLOPs of power, sources say
- PS4 will be supported into 2022, to live alongside PS5
- Sony: ultra-high-speed SSD is 'the key' to next-gen PS5
- PS5 dev kit rumor: 'ultra-fast RAM', Navi GPU with 13 TFLOPs
- PlayStation 5 rumored to ship with 2TB of super-fast SSD for $499
- Insider: PlayStation 5 dev kit faster than Xbox Scarlett right now
- PS5 cartridges aren't real, patents are for Sony kids toys
- PS5's SSD may benefit PS4 games the most
- PS5 powered by Navi in 2020, AMD making Navi with Sony input
- Cloud-powered PlayStation controller may let you play free game demos
- Gran Turismo 7 is a PlayStation 5 launch title: launches Nov 20, 2020
- PS5 confirmed to support 8K video, ray tracing, all on Navi
- PlayStation 5 rumored to cost $499, launches November 20, 2020
- PlayStation game demos are coming back with Sony's ambitious new plan
- PS5 controller: Built-in mic, USB-C, no lightbar, ergonomic design
- PlayStation 5 concept video shows totally new design
- Sony solves PS5's biggest issue
- Sony: PS5 development going according to plan
- New Viking Assassin's Creed may be next-gen console launch game
- AMD working on 'secret sauce' for next-gen Xbox/PlayStation
- The first real photo of a PlayStation 5 dev kit appears
- Next-gen PS5/Xbox Scarlett open-world game: 'best real-time graphics'
- Sony restructures workforce to prepare for PS5
- PlayStation VR 2: built-in cameras, wireless, ready for PS5
- PS5 games will ship on 100GB Blu-ray BDXL discs
- PS5 and Xbox Scarlett will both handle ray tracing differently
- PlayStation 5 could feature AI-powered 'PlayStation Assist'
- Sony won't abandon singleplayer story-driven games on PS5
- PS5 rumor: GPU is nearly as powerful as RTX 2080, GPU clocked at 2GHz
- PlayStation 5 rumored to be unveiled on February 12, 2020
- Sony to raise PS5 cost thanks to U.S. tariffs