When Sony packaged The PlayRoom with the PlayStation 4, they probably only intended for the game to be a neat little showcase of the power of the PlayStation Camera (PS Camera). For those unaware, The PlayRoom is merely a collection of augmented reality (AR) mini-games that is pre-loaded on every PS4. Consisting of the mini-games Play with Asobi (starring a pet robot with the same name that can be awakened with a rub of the DualShock 4’s Touch Pad and interacted with in a variety of ways), AR Bots (a game where players interact with thirty different robots on-screen), and Air Hockey (augments the game of air hockey via the DualShock 4 controller), The PlayRoom was originally supposed to focus on fun mini-games. Sure, Sony probably has some plans for the PS Camera (and The PlayRoom as a whole) later on, but for the time being? Mini-games were supposed to be the star of The PlayRoom and was supposed to be one of the core functions of the PS Camera.
Yet, something interesting has happened. Almost as soon as the PlayStation 4 was released, people started broadcasting themselves via the PS Camera, opting to ignore the AR games and show themselves off to the world. While many of these people are broadcasting X-Rated content that certainly is not suitable for anyone under the age of 18 years of age, quite a few people are choosing to be a little more creative and stream their own live talk shows to the world. It’s one of the most interesting uses for the PS Camera (and the PlayStation 4 as a whole) that we have seen thus far, and it’s only the tip of the proverbial iceberg regarding what is possible with the PlayStation 4 and the PS Camera.
Most notably, a husband and wife team gained notoriety last November when they livestreamed their very own talk show The Spartan Show to the masses. Using the PS4, The PlayRoom, and a PS Camera to stream the feed via the Twitch app (Twitch.tv has unfortunately removed The PlayRoom from its directory), the husband and wife team allowed people to call in to their show, speak to them live on the air, and interact with them as they conducted their talk show. In one evening alone, The Spartan Show garnered thousands of views, and it made such as splash with everyone, that even PlayStation US Publisher and Developer Relations Specialist Adam Boyes called the couple to tell them what they were doing was, in his words, ”pretty rad.”.
"We always just thought people would do streams," said Boyes. “We never thought people would do them with PlayRoom.”
In fact, The Spartan Show made such as splash that word spread to President of Worldwide Studios for Sony Computer Entertainment Shuhei Yoshida, whom tweeted to the show that he was, ”watching it.”
Since then, the show has garnered a ton of other followers, and while they don’t primarily do the show via their PS4 anymore, it certainly showed what the PS4 was capable of: allowing people to unleash their creativity, think ‘outside the box,’ and do something that has never been done before on a console. Just think: even a few years ago, who could have imagined that it would be entirely possible for anyone to host a talk show via a small, compact console? I certainly wouldn’t have, and you probably wouldn’t have either.
Of course, other people are hosting their own gaming-focused talk shows via ‘Let’s Play’ shows. It’s easy to simply select ‘Live on PlayStation’ from the home screen, scroll around for a few moments, and find some of the PS4’s best playing games for everyone to watch while interacting with their audience. Sure, this interactivity has been possible on Twitch.tv for quite a few years, but the fact that it’s now available via a console? That’s definitely impressive.
From talk shows to ‘Let’s Play’ shows and beyond, the PS Camera is more than just another accessory to the PS4: it’s a tool being used to allow people to be creative, product compelling content never seen on a console before, and interact with other PS4 users around the world. Have you used the PS Camera for creative purposes yet? Are you thinking about it? Let us know in the comments below!
Article by - Dusty W.
Insert Date: 3/16/2014