Can I completely install disc-based PS4 games on the HD?

#1 Edited by Wuddel (2079 posts) -

For performance reasons you obviously want to install games on the HD and run them from there. Is this possible with disc-games? Will it check for the disc? Hell, will it even allow locking & unlocking games to PSN-accounts with full user control?

#2 Edited by Sticky_Pennies (2019 posts) -

I assume it will work similarly to how the 360 does it. The game is installed from the disc to the drive, which allows the game to run faster and quieter (no constant disc spinning necessary). The trade-off being that the console checks for the disc while the game is running, and if you try to eject the disc during play it'll boot ya out.

Edit: That is, if the PS4 even supports installs. We don't know that yet, I guess.

#3 Edited by devilzrule27 (1239 posts) -

I believe the only thing they've said is that the games will install off the disk while you play to decrease load times and what not.

#4 Posted by Wuddel (2079 posts) -

@sticky_pennies said:

I assume it will work similarly to how the 360 does it. The game is installed from the disc to the drive, which allows the game to run faster and quieter (no constant disc spinning necessary). The trade-off being that the console checks for the disc while the game is running, and if you try to eject the disc during play it'll boot ya out.

Edit: That is, if the PS4 even supports installs. We don't know that yet, I guess.

The thing is if they actually are not mandatory the system is maybe hamstrung by developers having to account for people who do not install for some weird reason.

#5 Posted by Pessh (2454 posts) -

PS3 had a lot of mandatory installs so I imagine that'll still be a thing, no way you can play without the disc though, that's the tradeoff of having none of this DRM bs.

#6 Posted by Sticky_Pennies (2019 posts) -

@wuddel said:

@sticky_pennies said:

I assume it will work similarly to how the 360 does it. The game is installed from the disc to the drive, which allows the game to run faster and quieter (no constant disc spinning necessary). The trade-off being that the console checks for the disc while the game is running, and if you try to eject the disc during play it'll boot ya out.

Edit: That is, if the PS4 even supports installs. We don't know that yet, I guess.

The thing is if they actually are not mandatory the system is maybe hamstrung by developers having to account for people who do not install for some weird reason.

Yeah. The PS3 had mandatory installs in several games. It technically wasn't installing, per se, rather it was caching a large portion of the game to the hard disk.

I wonder, with this "play while downloading" technology being applied to their digital releases, that maybe with physical disc-based releases you can play the game while it installs from the disc! That'd be neat.

#7 Edited by TruthTellah (8535 posts) -

I'm curious about this, as well. It's an interesting trade off. Xbox One owners can basically just get a disc, use it once, and mostly forget about them. But PS4 owners will still need to swap discs around to play their games. Personally, that doesn't bother me, but I can see why it might be an advantage for how the Xbox One is doing it. Many people at this point just believe that the disadvantages with it outweigh those advantages. Microsoft is really pushing people into embracing the eventual future; the bad part is that they don't seem to have the necessary details pegged down to really make a coherent case for that push.

Though, if the PS4 can somehow fully install games to the HDD and not need the disc always in the drive, I don't know how they'd manage it without some kind of regular online account check of their own.

#8 Edited by Wuddel (2079 posts) -

@truthtellah: Well, Xbox is going the Steam route .... just without the steam prices.

I just hope for maximum performance. I will probably buy the story focused single-player games on disc. I have a circle of friends invested into the PS ecosystem and we coordinate purchases, so we can easily swap. And I will probably get a few MP-shooters and such digitally. I haven't played shooters much since the first Black Ops, so I can go for some blowing up stuff.Destiny + and BF4 I guess.

#9 Edited by devilzrule27 (1239 posts) -

If you don't want to deal with discs digital distribution is still an option. Pretty much every game comes out on PSN day and date with retail.

#10 Edited by TruthTellah (8535 posts) -

@wuddel said:

@truthtellah: Well, Xbox is going the Steam route .... just without the steam prices.

I just hope for maximum performance. I will probably buy the story focused single-player games on disc. I have a circle of friends invested into the PS ecosystem and we coordinate purchases, so we can easily swap. And I will probably get a few MP-shooters and such digitally. I haven't played shooters much since the first Black Ops, so I can go for some blowing up stuff.Destiny + and BF4 I guess.

That's really where pegging down the details makes such a difference. Steam got a lot of backlash at first, as well, but they gained trust through their consistency, ease of use, convenience, and pricing. Xbox One is certainly moving toward the eventual all digital future, but then, it has none of the details in place for building trust. Gamers don't yet trust that their games will be playable well into the future, they aren't sure if it will work well, they don't see the advantages for them, and they don't see a clear vision of sales and dynamic pricing that could make an all digital future more appealing.

Steam was sort of that way out of the gate, as well, though; so, Microsoft could certainly learn what they need to do. But that's a tough sell right now. Eventually, console games will be all digital, and we'll have to address these issues. And if Microsoft can actually find a way to manage it well, they could turn around a bad situation. It's just a difficult position to put themselves in, especially considering how Sony has now doubled down on sticking to what people are used to.

#11 Edited by eloj (488 posts) -

Xbox One owners can basically just get a disc, use it once, and mostly forget about them. But PS4 owners will still need to swap discs around to play their games. Personally, that doesn't bother me, but I can see why it might be an advantage for how the Xbox One is doing it

If you don't care about the disc, then get the digital download and there'll be no disc to care about?

#12 Posted by Demoskinos (14562 posts) -

@wuddel said:

@sticky_pennies said:

I assume it will work similarly to how the 360 does it. The game is installed from the disc to the drive, which allows the game to run faster and quieter (no constant disc spinning necessary). The trade-off being that the console checks for the disc while the game is running, and if you try to eject the disc during play it'll boot ya out.

Edit: That is, if the PS4 even supports installs. We don't know that yet, I guess.

The thing is if they actually are not mandatory the system is maybe hamstrung by developers having to account for people who do not install for some weird reason.

The Blu-ray drive will be faster this time around access speed won't be as much of an issue as it was on PS3

#13 Edited by MildMolasses (3213 posts) -

@pessh said:

PS3 had a lot of mandatory installs so I imagine that'll still be a thing, no way you can play without the disc though, that's the tradeoff of having none of this DRM bs.

Those were only as a result of of the very slow read speeds on first generation bluray drives to mitigate in game load times. The install out of necessity shouldn't be needed this time around. I would assume some degree of option installs should be possible

#14 Posted by Boom_goes_the_dynamite (692 posts) -

My guess is you will have to install the game from the disc, and the disc from then on will only be used as an authentication for the installed game being yours. But that is only a guess I'm pulling straight out of the air.

#15 Posted by killacam (1284 posts) -

@truthtellah: so laziness vs. consumer rights... xbox one wins

#16 Edited by StarvingGamer (7999 posts) -

@pessh said:

PS3 had a lot of mandatory installs so I imagine that'll still be a thing, no way you can play without the disc though, that's the tradeoff of having none of this DRM bs.

Not really a tradeoff though, because of day-and-date digital downloads. With the PS4 you can have it whichever way you want it.

#17 Posted by StarvingGamer (7999 posts) -

@killacam said:

@truthtellah: so laziness vs. consumer rights... xbox one wins

Not really. If you're lazy and don't mind not selling used games and DRM, just buy your PS4 games digitally.

#18 Edited by YapaPanda (121 posts) -

This was discussed by Cerny in a Gamasutra article a while ago (very interesting article, should give it a full read). Sounds like essentially, the PlayGo system they use for playing digital games while downloading is being used for disc based games as well. What I wonder is how this will change game design for the beginning of games since I assume there is a size limit to ensure this works. Link: Inside the PlayStation 4 With Mark Cerny

Cerny said (from article):

"So, what we do as the game accesses the Blu-ray disc, is we take any data that was accessed and we put it on the hard drive. And if then if there is idle time, we go ahead and copy the remaining data to the hard drive. And what that means is after an hour or two, the game is on the hard drive, and you have access, you have dramatically quicker loading... And you have the ability to do some truly high-speed streaming."

To further help the Blu-ray along, the system also has a unit to support zlib decompression -- so developers can confidently compress all of their game data and know the system will decode it on the fly. "As a minimum, our vision is that our games are zlib compressed on media," said Cerny.

#19 Posted by Wuddel (2079 posts) -

Yeah, digital downloads are quite a bit more expensive in my territory. Also I do not want my blu-ray drive to spin (for noise, I know I am an ass about this). Thanks for the info @yapapanda

#20 Posted by kaos_cracker (568 posts) -

I'm assuming there way of avoiding the DRM situation is by installing games but requiring the disk to be in the PS4 in order to work.

#21 Posted by LiquidPrince (15843 posts) -

I don't know if you would need to install anything in the first place. It has the play while it installs in the background thing, as well as a Blu-ray drive that is 3x faster then the one in the PS4. That should help loading considerably.

#22 Posted by vinone (128 posts) -

I'm going completely digital, but I don't believe they've said anything about disk based games including a full install of the game directly to the PS4 as well, I wish they would.

#23 Posted by LiquidPrince (15843 posts) -

@vinone said:

I'm going completely digital, but I don't believe they've said anything about disk based games including a full install of the game directly to the PS4 as well, I wish they would.

I assume that even if they let you do that, you would still need to pop the game disc in, since they aren't using the same DRM policies that MS is. I wouldn't really want to install the whole game to the HDD anyways, but that is just me. Less installs mean more space for other things.

#24 Edited by vinone (128 posts) -

@vinone said:

I'm going completely digital, but I don't believe they've said anything about disk based games including a full install of the game directly to the PS4 as well, I wish they would.

I assume that even if they let you do that, you would still need to pop the game disc in, since they aren't using the same DRM policies that MS is. I wouldn't really want to install the whole game to the HDD anyways, but that is just me. Less installs mean more space for other things.

That's why I'm just going digital and putting in a 2TB HDD the day the PS4 comes out. I'm done with disk based gaming, Steam has spoiled me.

#25 Posted by LiquidPrince (15843 posts) -

@vinone said:

@liquidprince said:

@vinone said:

I'm going completely digital, but I don't believe they've said anything about disk based games including a full install of the game directly to the PS4 as well, I wish they would.

I assume that even if they let you do that, you would still need to pop the game disc in, since they aren't using the same DRM policies that MS is. I wouldn't really want to install the whole game to the HDD anyways, but that is just me. Less installs mean more space for other things.

That's why I'm just going digital and putting in a 2TB HDD the day the PS4 comes out. I'm done with disk based gaming, Steam has spoiled me.

Owning a physical copy of the game, is the main reason I haven't been able to fully move over to Steam. I like having a selection of my favorite games on display. Also, I would rather get an SSD for this generation of consoles and probably will once the system is out and some people have experimented with it to see if there are any tangible benefits.

#26 Edited by vinone (128 posts) -

@liquidprince said:

Owning a physical copy of the game, is the main reason I haven't been able to fully move over to Steam. I like having a selection of my favorite games on display. Also, I would rather get an SSD for this generation of consoles and probably will once the system is out and some people have experimented with it to see if there are any tangible benefits.

All valid reasons to get disk based games, but I'm sick of having cases and games taking up space. I'm glad we're at a point where everyone can get what they want.

#27 Edited by LiquidPrince (15843 posts) -

@vinone said:

@liquidprince said:

Owning a physical copy of the game, is the main reason I haven't been able to fully move over to Steam. I like having a selection of my favorite games on display. Also, I would rather get an SSD for this generation of consoles and probably will once the system is out and some people have experimented with it to see if there are any tangible benefits.

All valid reasons to get disk based games, but I'm sick of having cases and games taking up space. I'm glad we're at a point where everyone can get what they want.

Yeah, that is true as well. I look at a stack of game guides that I have bought over the years and think to myself "what the hell am I doing?" Space is always an issue, but like you said it's great that we've reached a point where we can decide how we want to play.

#28 Posted by JCGamer (659 posts) -

@sticky_pennies: Mark Cerny said as much in an interview with Gamasutra. Oddly enough I just read that articles last night but written not too long after the initial reveal. On my cell or otherwise would try and link.

I was hoping that I could have a bunch of games on the HD and just play them, but that will probably be the trade off of not having the DRM. I guess I could just download the games as well.

#29 Edited by Wuddel (2079 posts) -

@liquidprince: The notion of not wanting to install games on a system can only come from someone not spoiled by SSDs in PCs I persume?

Yeah, disk checks are fine, but I do not want the drive to spin up ever during play. I have an OUYA with a tiny fan that already drives me nuts. My (relatively new, not much used, slim) PS3 is unbearably loud.

And forget about DVD cases. I acutally do not want my flat to reflect on the fact that I am a "gamer" apart from the existence of 1-2 consoles and that I have a funny looking PC mouse ;)

#30 Posted by zudthespud (3281 posts) -

@wuddel said:

@truthtellah: Well, Xbox is going the Steam route .... just without the steam prices.

While you could expect that, assuming it is already doesn't give them enough credit. Wait and see, I don't know either way.

#31 Posted by rebgav (1429 posts) -

This was discussed by Cerny in a Gamasutra article a while ago (very interesting article, should give it a full read). Sounds like essentially, the PlayGo system they use for playing digital games while downloading is being used for disc based games as well. What I wonder is how this will change game design for the beginning of games since I assume there is a size limit to ensure this works. Link: Inside the PlayStation 4 With Mark Cerny

Cerny said (from article):

"So, what we do as the game accesses the Blu-ray disc, is we take any data that was accessed and we put it on the hard drive. And if then if there is idle time, we go ahead and copy the remaining data to the hard drive. And what that means is after an hour or two, the game is on the hard drive, and you have access, you have dramatically quicker loading... And you have the ability to do some truly high-speed streaming."

To further help the Blu-ray along, the system also has a unit to support zlib decompression -- so developers can confidently compress all of their game data and know the system will decode it on the fly. "As a minimum, our vision is that our games are zlib compressed on media," said Cerny.

It doesn't seem like there's any need to change how the data is organized on the disc if it's basically installing as you access the data. There would be no "size limit" or preload period because the first time that the game accesses new data it's from the disc, except in instances where the data has already been installed. I guess it's basically how WoW handles background installing but with the added advantage of you having a full copy of the game locally so there's no wait period up front.

#32 Posted by YapaPanda (121 posts) -

@rebgav: I guess what I meant was there is probably an acceptable load time for the beginning of a game (since that is still either downloaded or read off the disc). You wouldn't want Gran Turismo 5 level load times. The PS4 has a PCAV Blu-ray drive so the outer edges of the disc are read at a much faster speed than the inside so this may offset it somewhat but there is a threshold that must be reached before the game begins playing, I just wonder if that changes the way games are designed or maybe they don't care and the initial load will be as long as they want?

#33 Posted by rebgav (1429 posts) -

@yapapanda: That's an interesting thought, I hadn't really considered how long the initial load could potentially be. I'd hope that the increased read-speed of the drive and the data compression that they're using would mitigate the issue a bit. I guess that they could buy some time by loading timed copyright screens and company logos, maybe an intro video up front to mask the load but if every game was looking at GT5 levels of insanity that would get old fast. Maybe it won't be an issue but maybe it will be the bane of first-wave software.

#34 Posted by XtraTrstrL (4 posts) -

Well, all games will be available digitally on release. So you could just buy the games on PSN store. All PS4 blu-rays should be fully zlib compressed though, so the zlib decompressor onboard will decompress on the fly, so it'll be more than 27mb/s that the 6x blu-ray can handle that'll be moving at a time when looking at it uncompressed. With it copying the game to HDD in the background, it's possible they can allow you to tie the game to your PSN account, or your PS4 itself. If not, then whatever, just have to have the disc in. I've been wondering about that answer too, cuz if you can't tie it in, and would need to put the disc in, I'd prolly just buy the game digitally. Another cool thing about the zlib compression is, all the games and demos on PSN can be zlib compressed too, so faster downloads.

#35 Posted by Humanity (8809 posts) -

Wish you could install all games on the PS3 cause some of those load times.. ouch.

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