After numerous teases, a bizarre logo reveal, a Mark Cerny tech-talk, and a flashy Unreal Engine 5 demo, it's time to see some actual PlayStation 5 games in action. Today's Sony stream about the PS5 promises games headed to the next-gen console and, actually, not much more beyond that. Below, you'll find an embed for watching it live and details on what's confirmed, what's expected, and what we might not see from today's showcase.
The show starts today, Thursday June 11, at 1 p.m. PT/4 p.m. ET. Sony is hosting it live in just two places: its official Twitch channel and YouTube. This is the same way Sony has handled its State of Play streams, though that branding's not used for this special event.
This "Future of Gaming" stream will be a pre-taped show, and Sony has warned ahead of time that the resolution and frame rate of the show is limited to 1080p and 30 frames per second. "This eased the show's production process during a time when many of our team and developers are working from home," writes Sony Interactive Entertainment's Sid Shuman. "The games you'll see on Thursday will look even better when you play them on PS5 with a 4K TV, as you'd expect."
Will We See the PS5?
While we've already gotten a first look at the PS5's new DualSense controller, Sony has not confirmed whether or not we'll be seeing the PS5 itself during this showcase. The original announcement for the show from President and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment Jim Ryan is careful to only guarantee that we'll be seeing games coming to the PS5:
We've shared technical specifications and shown you the new DualSense wireless controller. But what is a launch without games? That's why I'm excited to share that we will soon give you a first look at the games you'll be playing after PlayStation 5 launches this holiday. The games coming to PS5 represent the best in the industry from innovative studios that span the globe.
There was no warning given for the DualSense's sudden reveal on the PlayStation Blog back in April, so it's possible Sony may spring the PS5's final design on people, either today or at a later date.
Set Aside a Full Hour For it, and Then Some
Ryan's announcement also says that the show will "run for a bit more than an hour." Cagey as Sony is about the content of its digital streams, its runtime estimates for them are generally accurate.
Sony hasn't announced any sort of official lead-in or aftershow to accompany the stream. Show up a few minutes early if you're really worried about missing something, but don't expect an Inside Xbox-style breakdown with analysis and developer interviews after the event is finished. As part of Summer Game Fest, Geoff Keighley will host both a pre-show and post-show with various content creators and gaming influencers, if that's your cup of tea.
Watching the Show With Headphones Is the Way to Go, Sony Says
While the pre-taped program will be limited to a lower resolution and frame rate than the PS5's high-end capabilities, it seems Sony may try to bring some of the console's audio magic to the stream. Shuman says we should all bust out our headphones if we can: "there's some cool audio work in the show, and it might be harder to appreciate if it's pumped through your phone or laptop speakers."
Next-gen audio was a major focus in PS5 System Architect Mark Cerny's talk back in March, and Sony could be hyping up a tease for its new 3D audio capabilities. The PS5 will feature what Sony's calling the Tempest Engine, which Digital Foundry says is "effectively a re-engineered AMD GPU compute unit." It's a bespoke chip dedicated solely to pushing sound, and in theory, it'll allow for much more realistic (or, as a game might call for, unrealistic yet immersive) spatial audio. It could potentially support thousands of individual audio sources.
Cerny's presentation had some folks scratching their heads because he talked about how Sony might need pictures of your ears to deliver the best possible PS5 audio experience. To deliver realistic audio relative to an individual's unique body, Sony needs a Head-Related Transfer Function or HRTF to process all the sound with. Obviously, Sony can't do anything of the sort with this stream, but perhaps it will use one of the five general HRTF presets it has ready for launch to give a sense of it. The neat promise of this tech is that you won't need great headphones or a perfect HRTF match start noticing it, so if any of the games on the showcase really leverage the Tempest Engine, we should be able to get a sense for it even with compressed stream audio.
Or, it could be that Sony wants to work in musical performances like it did with its E3 2018 press conference. It's happened before, it could happen again.
No Studios Have Confirmed Any Titles for the Showcase
Beyond having Sony's not even confirming if any of its own first-party studios are showing things at this PS5 event. The popular rumors out there—Resident Evil 8, a Spider-Man sequel, a Demon's Souls remake—all sound (1) possible, (2) like safe bets in a business sense, and (3) like wishlist wants.
In other words, expect we might see a few long-standing rumors finally get confirmed, but also be prepared for some big surprises. Even for the stuff we're almost 100% certain we'll see, like whatever Dead Space writer Antony Johnston's new game is, there's very little to go on.
All we know is that we'll be seeing games that will launch on PS5, and with next-gen expectations running at a high for some and tempered by last month's subdued Xbox Series X showcase for others, how people feel about these reveals should be just as interesting as whatever actually shows us. Be sure to check USG after the showcase for our takes on the showcase.