While the Playstation 4, yet to be released comes November this year, won’t appear in stores for a couple of months, owing to its expensive price tag ($399 in the US) — gamers should start deciding now whether they wish to upgrade to the newest generation of Sony’s popular console.

PlayStation 4

As expected, the technical specs of this video game console are impressive. It features an x86 64-bit AMD Jaguar 8-core processor, with an approximate clock speed of 1.6GHz, 500GB of storage space and region-free BluRay capability. Although not included in the original PS4 package and available only as an additional accessory, the 1280 x 800 PS4 Eye camera features four microphones, face recognition software and dual lenses, allowing for an 85-degree field of vision which can locate players within the room and identify the positions of the wireless DualShock 4 controllers, now including a touchpad enabling precise gameplay.

With options allowing users to share live content and pre-recorded videos and “second screen” apps which provide gaming opportunities away from the unit, the PS4 boasts the ultimate interactive platform. The partnerships between PlayStation and UStream and Twitch align the PlayStation Plus with XBox Live, the subscription service for Microsoft’s rival console, and the inclusion of Gaikai’s cloud technology allows for faster downloading of games from the PlayStation store and the chance to start gameplay before downloading is complete. Those who enjoy disc-based games will be pleased to note that there is no restriction on the ability to play borrowed or secondhand games, although discs released for earlier generations will not be compatible. However, at Gamescom 2013, Sony president Andrew House announced that, to reward gamers for their loyalty, heavily-discounted upgrades for select PS3 games will be available in the future, with titles including Call of Duty: Ghosts, Battlefield 4, Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag and Watch Dogs, the latter two having an hour’s extra gameplay than their Xbox counterparts.

Games available exclusively on the PS4 platform will include Killzone Shadow Fall, inFamous: Second Son, FinalFantasy XIV: Realm Reborn, Diablo 3, The Order 1886, Knack, The Witness and DriveClub. Furthermore, the PS4 will be predictive, recommending games based on analysis of the user’s game choices, which may include the multi-platform Destiny, FIFA 2014 and Kingdom Hearts III.