In-depth comparisons showing how Sony transformed a classic for the 4K generation.
One of the best-looking games on PS4 and PS4 Pro, WipEout Omega Collection revives a much-loved series for a new generation. Combining WipEout HD, Fury and 2048 in one package, developer Studio Liverpool's memory lives on in this excellent remaster. And thanks to the talent at Clever Beans, EPOS Game Studios, and Sony XDev Europe, we have a release that not only pays homage to a genuine classic, but also stands tall as a fully viable, modern PlayStation 4 release with some impeccable technical credentials.
It's also a fine example of scalability between PlayStation 4 and its super-charged Pro stablemate. Similar to Horizon Zero Dawn, the main difference really is in resolution, and visuals are otherwise the same for both. A regular PS4 renders at a native 1080p with 4x8 EQAA (Enhanced Quality Anti-Aliasing) - a proprietary AMD technology that has been deployed in both PS4 and Xbox One titles, including Forza Motorsport 6. PS4 Pro offers the same solution, albeit at checkerboard 2160p with motion blur enabled, or native 4K with the effect turned off. Despite older marketing suggesting that WipEout Omega Collection renders with a dynamic resolution, we can now confirm that it's native 1080p on base, 4K on Pro. Put simply, the final code doesn't need to adjust pixel-counts on the fly.
On top of that, not only is the framebuffer locked, the performance level is too. Even on demanding circuits with lots of weapons, neither console buckles from 60fps, even at the congested starting grid. It's a rock-solid line on either PS4 machine, with v-sync always engaged. 60fps isn't to be taken for granted in WipEout, and even the PS3 version struggled to hold that number at times. A weapons-fuelled slice of WipEout HD Fury action could see PlayStation 3 drop sporadically to 45fps. That's all completely ironed out on PS4 and PS4 Pro, and we're also happy to report that two-player split-screen also holds native 4K at the same rock-solid frame-rate - no mean feat bearing in mind that the console is processing two sets of geometry, one for each viewpoint.
From the archive: The history. The legacy. The end.
Every Sunday, we bring you an article from our archive - and this week, to celebrate the original PlayStation's 20th birthday, we present the story of the studio behind one of the console's most iconic games.
Plus! Will 2048's tracks make their way to the PS3?
Successfully embracing connectivity and community is the biggest challenge facing developers as they head into the next generation, according to Studio Liverpool, the outfit behind Sony's long-running WipEout series - and in 5-10 years the isolated single-player experience could well be in decline.
WipEout HD and WipEout HD Fury content launches for WipEout 2048 tomorrow, 20th June, Sony has announced.
Those who already own the packs for PlayStation3 will be able to download PS Vita versions free as part of Sony's Cross-Buy feature. Players who buy the content for PS Vita will also be entitled to play on PS3 for free.
You can download WipEout HD to your PS Vita in the form of WipEout 2048 - WipEout HD Game Pack for £6.49. This includes 12 new tracks (including eight reverse tracks) and 12 new ships.
Studio Liverpool on the making of Vita's finest racing game.
PlayStation Vita delivers what many thought impossible: a current-generation HD console experience in the palm of your hand. It's an exciting achievement, made possible by the most advanced gaming architecture of any mobile device on the market today combined with what many believe to be the most varied, high-quality launch line-up we've seen for any console launch.
I've found a new way to terrify myself. It's not by counting the grey hairs in my beard, nor is it by examining my receding hairline, checking my bank balance or reading up on whatever tropical disease is in vogue. It's by surrendering myself to WipEout 2048, and more specifically, to Zone mode on the track Sol.
It's the drop halfway around this sky-bound track that does the trick; a blind crest that gives way to nothing, the track pulled from beneath you and leaving you suspended for a handful of panicked seconds. It's made more urgent by Zone's airbrushed psychedelics, and more urgent still by the steadily escalating speed of the ship at your fingertips.
This is WipEout at its best, and it's preserved, in part, for the series' Vita debut. WipEout's been much more than a futuristic racing series since its inception - it's been one that's screamed that the future is, in fact, now. It started with the PlayStation debut, a game that did more than just usher in the 3D age - it lent gaming an edgy credibility that helped pave the path to success for Sony's then fledgling interactive empire.
Sony has revealed more information on PlayStation Vita's online modes Near, Party, LiveArea and Activity.
Near is like the Nintendo 3DS' SpotPass. It's "a location-based gifting system", according to Sony Europe manager of R&D, Phil Rogers.
"What Near does is it allows users to discover each other, leave gifts for each other and essentially find out more about games. You can see where people are in relation to your location, their five most recently played games and also gifts that they've registered. This is fairly cool because it exposes users to games they might not have heard of and you can see how popular those games are and how people are rating them," explained Rogers at the Develop Conference 2011.
If there is one game that has defined the PlayStation brand throughout the ages it's wipEout. Psygnosis's 1995 original arrived alongside Sony's very first console, bringing with it a promise of the future - a vision that was as chic and urban as the twenty-somethings the game's marketing sought to seduce.