Shuhei Yoshida: PS4 Developers to Get Past the “Uncanny Valley” (UPDATED)

Sony Worldwide Studios President Shuhei Yoshida is obviously quite proud of the PS4, and today he drew a comparison with what was accomplished with the PS3, also talking about the future of the new console in an interview on the Japanese website Inside Games.

Yoshida-san explained that with The Last of Us and Uncharted developers have come closer to expressing emotions similar to what you see in a movie or perceive by reading a book, mentioning that it’s called “uncany valley phenomenon” technically, as even if the digital character resembles a human, there’s still a little difference that makes it feel strange.

He then continued by stating that the top developers are already getting close to the point in which you have trouble understanding what is real and what is digitally rendered.

Yoshida-san brought as an example the “Dark Sorcerer” tech demo presented by Quantic Dream at E3, in which it’s hard to distinguish whether it’s live action or digital. It was also successful in challenging comedy, which is one of the genres that rely on subtle nuances the most.

He finally mentioned that while the performance of the hardware is there, it takes time for the software technology to catch up in order for developers to be able to truly reach their goals:

After the release of the PS4, the time in which developers are getting accustomed to the hardware is coming. In three years Naughty Dog’s work would become even more exciting, wouldn’t it?

Update: Yoshida-san clarified on Twitter that he was talking hypothetically on the line of “Imagine a PS4 game from devs like Naughty Dog in 3 years…” and he didn’t mean that Uncharted for PS4 had been in development for three years. We replaced the relevant part of the translation above with a clearer one to reflect Yoshida-san’s original thought.

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  • TehP0werOfTehCloudz

    We will probably see a 2015 Q1 or Q2 release

    • oOqUiS

      That’s my prediction as well>

    • André Rocha

      I think except for Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, UC2 and UC3 were released in November so we can have hope (who knows) that they announce it on E3 the release date just a bit before christmas. Hey, one can always dream right :p

      • jb223

        I’ll be dreaming right there with ya buddy. It’s definitely not outside of the realm of possibility, look at the previous timelines w/ games, add that to the fact that they are working off of the same engine from the ps3, so no extra time there, mocap seems to be mostly in the can, and a 2014 release is definitely feasible. That said, it seems like Naughty Dog was successful w/ the Last of Us’ release window and I could also see them holding back until summer of 2015 to take advantage of a certain drought & to line up w/ Hollywood’s own blockbuster season, but Uncharted has always been so closely associated w/ the Holidays for me personally, I’d hate to lose those great feelings of getting wrapped up so fully in a game during those cold months.

      • BalramRules

        Thank you, a comment I can relate to, I need my dreams… (why am I only thinking of Inception right now?)

    • Virdin Barzey

      Anyone who thinks UC4 will be released this year is gullible at best. I just hope they don’t bring back the drunk control of Drake where he staggers trying to touch everything. This series need a shot in the arm. Finally got some competition with Tomb Raider. They will probably need to open it up more.

      • DrunkwitPowah

        Naughty Dog has no competition. TR was an alright game but the ending was absolute trash and it was at that point that the whole thing fell apart.

        • jb223

          Totally agreed. As much as I dug Tomb Raider when I was younger, Uncharted perfected that formula while adding elements that have been & will continue to be copied for many years to come. Like you said, storywise there really is no competition, Uncharted’s story is thoughtful & well crafted, moreso than the vast majority of games ever put out, the Tomb Raider reboot’s was more of an afterthought, a loose string of events barely tied together w/ some old mythology & Lara’s history shoehorned in in uninteresting ways. I wouldn’t mind if Uncharted had a few more open areas in the way of tombs & whatnot, but Uncharted succeeded because the story mattered and the environments helped to tell it, the linearity only ever worked in its favor, make it too open world and it could potentially lose focus. How many open world games have actually compelled gamers to even play to completion? Even Rockstar, the kings of open world have rarely succeeded in that gargantuan feat. If Uncharted 4 is more of the same w/ new locales & another interesting story then I’m all in. The main thing I would like to see beefed up is the Adventure element & the variety of environments.

        • Virdin Barzey

          That’s your opinion as was mine which I completely disagree with you. This Uncharted series has gotten stale. Same ole same old. Its ridiculous. Yeah there are folks like yourself that enjoy it which is cool but the game is so scripted with no freedom. No upgrading of anything just a familiar story on rails. The gameplay feels ancient with pretty graphics. I agree that Tomb Raider story fell apart, but the gameplay was far more exciting than UC3. The game wasn’t open but it played much more open than UC3. A better story by TR and its not even close.

          UC series was great for last gen when it first came out. Like Gears, the 3rd one feels tired. I have no doubt that ND will step it up but it will need to be more than graphics and a familiar story. Been there done that.

    • DrunkwitPowah

      If it’s already been in development for 3 years then you can bet it’ll get a 2014 release date and drop around Oct or Nov.

  • PatcherStation

    I only rated Uncharted and Uncharted 2. Would’ve have much preferred Last of Us 2, giving Uncharted a break. But I suppose it never works like that.

    • TehP0werOfTehCloudz

      Well they had to make a new uncharted since the ps4 needs a huge system seller
      and they will probably make a new ip after uncharted 4

  • islan

    I think that’s a misreading. He’s comparing the time in which developers master a new hardware to Naughty Dog’s mastery of the PS3 over 3 years.

  • heckteck

    when i got done with Tomb Raider a second time playing on the ps4 i went back to U3 to do some trophy clean up and man the controls were pretty bad, i mean controlling drake was so flimsy. the only thing i wish for ND to do is make drake move smoothly i mean Lara was a dream to control and drake was as smooth as broken glass…..although i didn’t notice all of this when U3 first release lol

    • Michael Balchunas

      You dont even know if you will be controlling nathan drake though 😉 Could be Sir Francis Drake 😛

  • Josh

    Here’s hoping for:
    Infamous Second Son – March
    The Order: 1886 – September
    Uncharted 4 – November

    • generic-user-name a.k.a GUN

      November 2015 maybe.

      • Josh

        I just can’t see Uncharted 4 being on a 4 yr development cycle. As a business strategy that just doesn’t seem like a very profitable approach and seeing that their development cycle was usually around 2 years on the PS3, this Fall/Winter would make it a solid 3 year development which seems about right. I think people are skeptical because they haven’t seen or heard much about it, but Naughty Dog is notorious for announcing games only a year before release. That would mean November of 2014 if tradition holds true. And I’m betting a gameplay trailer and release date come E3.

        • generic-user-name a.k.a GUN

          Well I certainly hope you’re right but we saw more of tlou when it was revealed than we have of U4.

  • Manoj Varughese

    Off topic though can’t go without mentioning that Beyond Two souls does this too. I hope Quantic Dream’s designer be a little level headed next time with gameplay mechanics and proper narrative style.

  • No he doesn’t mean Uncharted 4 has been under dev for 3 years. He meant that it took 3 years for Naughty Dog to master the HW on the PS3 before delivering high quality games, and used it as an example to explain his argument.

    This is at least what I think he meant.

  • Solid Snake

    I want them to release an Uncharted trilogy collection for PS4. And also the last of us for PS4….