Developer lauds simplicity of new handheld; PS3 compatibility 'possible'

PSP2 ‘completely developer-centric this time’

Sony has kept true to its promise to create a new console that will put developers first, according to detailed claims from an unconfirmed source.

Speaking to Eurogamer on the condition of anonymity, the insider lauded Sony’s upcoming PSP2 platform as “a developer’s dream”.

The handheld’s development platform was said to be built for rapid project turnaround, ease of use, as well as straightforward porting between PSP2 and PS3.

“Sony is finally doing the things developers have been crying out for for years,” the person said.

"Sony has made it completely developer-centric this time. [The development kit] is really simple to plug in and use. It opens direct in Windows Explorer and you can see all systems on a network – so you could, for example, update the firmware of multiple NGPs at once.”

The source continued: "A PS3 dev station can take three hours to set-up. This looks like it will take under 20 mins. It just makes everything easier – they’ve really thought about it this time.”

Last year, Sony Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida told Develop the PlayStation manufacturer had learnt from mistakes in the past and was going to build new platforms with developers in mind.

“When Ken Kutaragi moved on and Kaz Harai became the president of SCE, the first thing Kaz said was, ‘get World Wide Studios in on hardware development’,” Yoshida said.

“So he wanted developers in meetings at the very beginning of concepting new hardware, and he demanded SCE people talk to us [developers].”

When asked whether this change in philosophy will be applied to future PlayStation hardware, Yoshida replied: “Yes, we are undergoing many activities that we haven’t yet been talking about in public. Some future platform related activities.”

‘Cross platform’

Eurogamer’s source went on to claim that PSP2 tech allowed for more straightforward cross-platform development – a testament to both its power and simplicity to develop on.

The person claimed to have seen the “WipEout HD PS3 engine running on [PSP2] with no changes to the art platform”.

“That means full resolution, full 60 frames per second. It looks exactly the same as it does on PS3 – all the shader effects are in there.

"Any shaders for PS3 stuff will just work. We won’t have to rewrite. What would have taken two to three months before looks like it could take just one to two weeks now. The architecture is obviously different, but it’s the same development environment."

Sony is apparently “urging developers to create releases that work across PS3 and NGP”, Eurogamer said.

"They want us to do cross-platform," said the source, explaining that the submission process has been streamlined, with only a single submission required for a title on PSN and NGP.

Yet Sony is apparently urging developers to avoid straight console-to-handheld ports. The firm "does not want exactly the same game" on PSP2 and PS3.

There needs to be a purpose behind the PSP2 edition of a PS3/PSN game, the source said.

"They want at least some kind of interactivity between the two versions with NGP-only extras.”

More details on this story, including launch details, can be found over at Eurogamer.

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