How Does the PS4 Deal with Those Massive Mandatory Installs?
Posted by Sammy Barker
There was an industry-wide panic attack when Call of Duty: Ghosts’ leaked PlayStation 4 box art revealed that you’ll need 49GB of hard-drive space in order to play the first-person shooter. Installs have been a blight on the PlayStation 3 for the entirety of its seven year lifespan, with some games seemingly taking longer to copy to the console’s hard-drive than to actually finish. Fortunately, that won’t be the case with the manufacturer’s next generation machine.
Speaking at a North American review event in New York City earlier today, system architect Mark Cerny finally took the opportunity to clarify how the mandatory installs will work. As soon as you put a disc into the system, the device will start copying data to its on-board 500GB HDD. In the case of launch title Knack, this process will take ten seconds before you can actually start to play. The procedure will continue while you’re actually in the game, with a total of 37GB being copied to the console in total. Naturally, the numbers will vary depending on the software.
The reason that this happens is due to a Blu-ray limitation. The futuristic format’s disc drive may be significantly faster than Sony’s current generation console, but it’s still not quick enough to read data at the speed that developers want. As a consequence, the manufacturer decided that it would provide a better experience all around if games actually ran off the hard-drive rather than from the disc. In short, then, even if you’re sticking with physical media, you won’t actually be playing any of your releases off the Blu-ray, as they’ll always be copied to the HDD.
Fortunately, you’ll be able to delete any cached data at any time. The company did consider creating an auto-delete function within the system, but decided that consumers would prefer more autonomy over what they do with their data. The good news is that with the majority of the information being copied in the background, you won’t be forced to sit through laborious install screens should you decide to replay a deleted game.
Still, that 500GB hard-drive is going to fill up pretty fast if you’re playing multiple titles, isn’t it? Fortunately, this isn’t an issue that’s exclusive to the PS4, as the Xbox One will also require you to install all of your games. Are you frustrated by this, or do you think that the platform holder’s handled it pretty well? Copy some data into the comments section below.