While experts are still examining whether Watch_Dogs’ awkwardly stylised name is a violation of the international peace treaty, the game itself looks rather rad. Announced for PlayStation 4 during Sony’s press conference earlier this week, the game’s senior producer Dominic Guay has now shared a few more details about what will make the next generation release superior to its PS3 counterpart.
"I guess the image I would give [compared to PS3] is that it's like a magnifying lens," he revealed in an interview with Digital Spy. "Every core pillar of the game is able to be pushed further. We're able to push the immersion. The fidelity of the graphics is one part of the immersion, but it's more than graphics.”
Guay explained that the power of the PS4 allows the developer to explore new areas such as physics and artificial intelligence. "We can spend more time in the brain of each AI with a more powerful machine, saying, 'OK, how will I react to what just happened there? Where will I run to? Will I call the cops?', or stuff like that,” he said. "Fundamentally the core, innovative part of Watch_Dogs is the same on every platform. But on PS4 we're able to push every lever a lot further."
The title will also boast some additional control mechanics on PS4. The touchpad in the centre of the DualShock 4 controller, for example, will be used to control protagonist Aiden Pearce’s smartphone, which is central to the open world title’s hacking mechanics. We suspect that this will be combined with the controller’s speaker to sell the full experience.
The developer also praised the device’s overall feel, stating that the analogue sticks and triggers in particular are much “tighter” than the DualShock 3. "We have a game with driving, shooting, a lot of navigation, so we need tight inputs – they did a pretty good job with that," he pointed out.
And as for the development environment itself – something which was a huge point of discussion during this week’s press conference – Guay was keen to stress how easy the platform is to work on. "We did fine with the PS3 at Ubisoft Montreal, but we spent more time getting through the hurdles, if you want,” he continued. "Now, very, very quickly we got Watch_Dogs on [PS4], and it looks good, and we're happy with the performance and that's a good sign, and we're able to push the immersion level and interactivity of our game instead of trying to get things to work."
Turning his attention to the PS4’s 8GB GDDR5 RAM, the senior producer explained that it’s a very important feature for Watch_Dogs. “Our game's in an open city where you can get into a very fast sports car and drive at 150 miles an hour, so typically what happens then is that you'll trade off scale or density but we don't want to do that, because in [the game] you can hack anything, and if you end up in a street where there's nothing, then the game's truth kind of falls down,” he said.
You can read the full interview through here. The game’s set to launch alongside the PS4 later this year. In the meantime, you can check out the title’s latest gameplay demo courtesy of the video above.