The Ultimate PS4 Gamer's Launch Guide

Solar Eclipses, Halley's Comet, Taco Tuesdays, a blue moon, fantastic morning hair, and the PS4 launch. What do all these things have in common? They are all something that doesn’t happen every day, or in some cases, every year. These are what you would call, big deals. Mucho Importante, know what I’m saying? Oh, sorry, switched languages there, I mean that these things are very important. Now, let’s narrow that list down a bit. We’re here to talk PS4, and more specifically, the fact that it’s coming out very, very soon.

You probably already know this, but if you just woke up from a cryo sleep where you froze yourself to wait until the PS4 comes out, allow me to be the first to congratulate you on perfecting a concept that is still years away from even being remotely possible. I’ll give you a moment to use Google and see what you missed. Okay, all caught up? Great, now it’s time to prepare ladies, gentlemen, and hypothetical recently thawed out popsicle man. The PS4 is coming, faster than we all realize, and I’m here to make sure you’re all prepared.

Step One:
Check your printer for paper and then proceed to print this document. Do it, do it now.

If you’re hesitating to print this article because this survival guide has yet to provide you with any substantial information beyond incredible wit, then allow me to comfort you. You will die (metaphorically) without this survival guide. Make no mistake dear reader, you are walking into a warzone. A console launch is like navigating the Nevada Desert during a nuclear test. It’s loud, dangerous, and possibly radioactive. Okay, maybe not dangerous, but definitely radioactive.

You’ve heard the saying “don’t bring a gun to a tank fight.” This document is your bazooka, and with this you will have all the information a singular sentient being could ask for to prepare them for the PS4’s launch. So, now that you’ve printed this and are currently reading words that I haven’t written yet, let’s begin.

Where to Find a PS4 at Launch
Where to Find a PS4 at LaunchAt this point, so close to the launch, there are two kinds of people. You’re either one who managed to pony up the cash for a pre-order, or you’re a person who didn’t have time or money to pre-order for the two seconds it was available. Either way, this guide is still for you, as this information is valuable to both parties. If you’re looking to get a PS4 at launch (who isn’t?) then I’m going to recommend you walk a little on the wild side and set up camp for a midnight launch.

But Bradley, you say, what if they don’t have any extras? Excellent question reader. As someone who works in retail, I can say that people will not be willing to divulge how many PS4’s they are getting. Although if you catch a particularly lazy worker at Walmart, they may spill the beans. The better way to go about this is to find somewhere off the grid. A local GameStop perhaps, one inside of a mall or somewhere that isn’t usually busy. The kicker here is that the big stores are going to be super slammed. A console launch like this will bring out the people who camp outside Best Buy a week ahead of time.

As of this weekend (November 10th) GameStop released a statement about the midnight event. This is the full message below and outlines exactly how the event will work. Here's the full release below:

"Things To Know, Before You Go"
GameStop PS4 MidnightOur doors will open 6pm in most locations, but check with your local store for opening times. This title will be available for pick-up at Midnight.

Between 6pm and midnight is when we finalize your transaction. You will need to go to the register to receive your finalized purchase receipt. Finalizing the transaction is where we take your deposit, partial or full, and create a sale receipt. Our associates will assign you a Guest # to hold a place in line for you when midnight hits. Don't forget to bring your trade-ins to take advantage of our great trade specials to reduce the price of your game. Everybody likes to save money! You don't have to arrive at 6pm.

You can show up anytime between 6pm and midnight. However, by coming early, you can get your trade-ins and transaction processed sooner and be assigned a Guest # closer to the front of the line. Our staff will begin organizing our customers into line in Guest # order just before midnight so we will be ready to get you your PS4 purchases as quickly as possible when midnight hits.

Come hang out with our associates and fellow Sony PS4 enthusiasts as we ring in the next generation in video gaming! Our knowledgeable staff will be available all evening to answer any questions that you may have and assist you with any additional purchases. We will have a great selection of PS4 games and accessories to help you get the best gaming gear for your new console.

The Sony PS4 will be available beginning at 12:01am on Friday, 11/15.

"Power To the Players."

Then again, if you did manage to pre-order, you’re golden. But my advice still applies. Get there early, and be ready to wait a few hours. You’ll be glad you did because you’ll beat the rush and be on the way home before you can say day one patch. This is the fastest way to do it, and the safest. If you’re at the end of the line, you’ll be heading out to your car pretty late which can be problematic in today’s society. Be safe and be smart, PS4 is to die for, but it’s not worth dying for.

To Buy Now, or to Buy Later?
You may have noticed that some places are already selling PS4 games and accessories. As much as I would love to rat them out for breaking street date, they’re not. Sony has given their blessing to sell DualShocks, Eye Cameras, Charging Stations, and several games. People will come into my store and laugh because these items are out, but you can’t get the system. What’s the point? They ask. Well for one, it’s testing the waters, but more importantly, it’s an opportunity to prepare ahead of time.

Yes, it hurts having that copy of Killzone: Shadow Fall without your PS4, but it would hurt even more if you go to buy it at launch, and it’s gone. See that’s the thing that most people forget, is that these items aren’t flying off the shelves now, but they will be. People are going to want a game, and probably another controller. These things will leave the store with every PS4 that gets sold. When you think of it that way, this opportunity to buy what you want ahead of time is key to ensuring you get it with your system. Here is what’s currently out, and a short description of each. More items release this week before the launch, so I’ll be updating this section accordingly.

DualShock 4 ps41. DualShock 4 ($59.99):
This is the controller that your system comes with. Several of the game’s launch titles will support multiple players. These include Call of Duty: Ghosts, Knack, and LEGO Marvel. Having two controllers is something that needs to happen sooner than later. Right now the shelves are stocked, so this is a grab in my opinion.

Killzone: Shadow Fall ps42. Killzone: Shadow Fall ($59.99):
Killzone has always been a flagship series for Sony and this installment looks to continue the legacy. Set several decades after Killzone 3, this first person shooter sports incredible graphics and a story that has two warring factions occupying the same planet, divided only by a wall that is beginning to crumble both physically and metaphorically. This will be a beast of a game, and a great way to break in your new system.

PlayStation Eye Camera ps43. PlayStation Eye Camera ($59.99):
This is Sony’s answer to the Kinect and features a more modest price tag. With voice recognition, facial scanning, and the ability to recognize the DualShock 4 in many ways, this little camera has a lot going for it. Not much will be available for it at launch, save for a really cool free game called The Playroom, so this isn’t a must buy, but if you have the extra cash, it has a lot of potential.

Charging Dock ps44. Charging Dock ($29.99):
The DualShock 4 controllers run on a rechargeable battery. The system includes a mini usb cable for charging, but this only accommodates one controller and only works when the system is on. The charging dock allows for the charging of two controllers and plugs into an outlet, meaning you can charge while you’re away doing boring stuff like work.

Knack ps45. Knack ($59.99):
This is a perfect platformer for both kids and adults alike. You play as Knack, a military weapon made from various relics. The game has a fun cartoon art style, features two player cooperative play, and is fun for all ages. The gameplay is simple to learn, but difficult to master as you gain various abilities and change in size based on the relics you collect. If you have kids or are just looking for something different, grab this one.

Call of Duty: Ghosts6. Call of Duty: Ghosts ($59.99):
I just finished this game on the PS3, and I must say, grab the PS4 version if you can. This game was made for PS4 and when you play it on PS3, the graphics are scaled down to ludicrous levels just to accommodate the PS3. The game plays fine, but it could look ten times better, and it will on PS4. If you already bought it, that’s alright, I have more news for you! And segue.

PS4’s Digital Upgrade Program
PS4’s Digital Upgrade ProgramAs you probably know, many games this fall are releasing on PS3 and the PS4. If you’re chomping at the bit to play Call of Duty or Battlefield, or even Assassin's Creed, then you can get it on the PS3 and upgrade it to the PS4 version. Yes, before you ask, there’s a catch, but it’s not so bad. You see, these games come with a code to upgrade it for ten dollars. Doing so nets you a digital download of the PS4 version of the game.

Now this is where it gets a little rocky. You have to insert your PS3 disc into your PS4 each time you want to play your download. The reasoning here, is that your disc provides a means of identifying that you purchased and currently own the game. Think of it like a physical CD key. Doing this program means you can’t trade your old game in, but it also means you get the upgrade for ten dollars instead of sixty. It’s a fair trade off in my opinion, and something to keep in mind if you already own any of those titles on PS3.

Where to sell your old systems
Where to sell your old systemsThe best place to sell old consoles is probably online, but at this point we’re looking for quick money. I wouldn’t recommend a Pawn Shop as they are not too keen on values. Now I know it gets flack for the trade values, but, GameStop is offering a pretty sexy trade offer this weekend for people who pre-ordered the PS4. On Sunday, November 10th, for one day only, anyone who trades a system of any kind towards a PS4 pre-order gets an additional 90% in store credit. That’s just shy of double the value.

Upon doing some research, this bonus could net you upwards of a hundred bucks for an old PS3 and more for a newer one. Even if you want to trade in your Xbox 360 before it red rings on you, this bonus can net you a good fifty or sixty bucks for one of the old Xbox 360 models. It’s a one day only thing, a “pre-launch” event as they call it, but I would recommend doing any trades on your pre-order this weekend, as the value won’t be any higher after that.

If you’re willing to wait, EBay is a solid option, but if you go this route, I would recommend selling a bundle of your old system with a game collection. The market is oversaturated so you’ll need to make yourself stand out. And remember, EBay gets a cut of your earnings. Next thing you know they’ll require you to be a gold member just to sell stuff. Oh wait, sorry, that’s Microsoft’s thing (Got ‘em!).

Prepare Thy Home, Prepare Thy Soul
So now you’ve got a game plan, but what happens when you get home and the living room’s cluttered? Or what if your router is on the other side of the house and you misplaced the password for the Wifi? What about snacks?! Okay, I got to stop before I freak myself out any more than I already have. In all seriousness though, you want your PS4 to feel welcome in your home, so let’s get everything situated. Don’t worry, I’ll break this down into simple steps so it’s not as daunting a task as cleaning my living room (That’s where the radioactive part comes in by the way).

DUSTStep One: DUST!:
Yes ladies and gentlemen, dust. The enemy of all things electronic. It’s the silent killer, amassing its forces upon your fans, your vents, and slowly choking the life out of everything electronic that you love. The PS4 is designed with extra ventilation, but you can never be too careful. Grab a swiffer, or an old fashioned feather duster if you prefer, and go to town. Get the shelves of your entertainment center all dusted and wiped down.

Now you’ve got dust in your carpet, or in my case on the tile. Get out the old dust devil and whip up a storm, the last thing you need is all that hard work going to waste the second you sit down on the floor to hook up your PS4.

We gamers know how fast our cables get tangled up behind the TV. You’re probably going to be unhooking things and switching others to make room for the PS4’s HDMI cable, so get a head start and free up that port on your TV. That way when the PS4 shows up there’s an open spot and it’s not awkward. Remember, you want it to feel welcome.

Power surges are the heart attacks of electronics. One good lightning strike and everything could be fried. Don’t give fate the option, go out and get a nice, top of the line surge protector. It may cost you forty or fifty bucks, but your PS4 will thank you when a storm hits and it doesn’t get zapped from the inside out.

If you’re lucky like me, your router is in the living room. Good, because the PS4 does have a day one update. Nothing crazy mind you, but you’ll want internet when you get home to download the update. I recommend a hardwired connection for best speed, but Wifi is good too. If you have the router close by, make sure you have a spare Ethernet cable to hook up the PS4. They’re cheap, but you’ll be sorry if you don’t have one ready. Also, if you have a Wifi password, make sure that’s handy so you don’t hit a road block.

The only reason, and I mean the only reason you should leave you living room once you get your hands on the PS4 is to use the bathroom. Prepare your sacred place by stocking up on nonperishable items. Pretend the PS4 is a natural disaster, and you need to be able to survive for several days until rescue (yeah right) arrives. We’re talking chips, we’re talking soda, and we’re talking mini fridge. If you don’t have one, it’s fine, but maybe grab a cooler instead? And since we’re all human, grab a case of water, though I’d only use it to wash down those packs of Mountain Dew and or Energy Drinks that you’re primarily drinking.

This is only the beginning
This is how it starts folks. Everything here gets you prepared, but getting your PS4 is only half the battle. Once you have it in your hands, it all begins. Have this article handy when you’re heading out to the battlefield, and when you get home, jump back online here to PS4 Experts to check out my upcoming New Owner’s Survival Guide. That’s right, everything to do once you have the system in your hands. You didn’t think we’d leave you hanging, did you? Keep it tuned here, I’ll be updating this article all the way up to the launch as more items become available.

Here is the PS4 Manual, bookmark it for a later date!

Be honest, how amazing was that launch guide? Is there anything else you want to know prior to the launch? Tell us in the comments!

Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert Date: 11/07/2013

See Also:


Wait outside at closing

If you by chance find out that there are going to be extras, the chance is very likely that you aren't the only one to find this out. Going at closing is probably going to cost you the opportunity to get a system. It would probably be advisable to get there as soon as you can. If no line has formed start one, if you don't want to be the starter atleast be the second in line. My sister-n-law is a manager at a Gamestop and she has mentioned that they have 100+ preorders to fill at her store alone... now not all will be filled but I wouldn't bet on many extras being available for very long once the system opens up for them to sell the consoles. Speaking of waiting in line, the longest I have ever waited was 12-16 hours...because at the time I wanted a day one release of a particular console and didn't have the money to reserve it when it was announced so had to save the money up and wait. But I was number 2 in line when they only had 55 units. I could only think, that 56th person was going to be pissed.


Awesome guide man. But about the bathroom thing. That's what empty Mountain Dew bottles are for. Never leave that couch. Keep some Axe bodyspray next to you as well.

Kick ass

Kick ass guide, can't wait. A new era of gaming is upon us people!