2020 will be a pivotal year for gaming, as two of the top three players in the console business will release brand new gaming rigs capable of incredible performance, better than any console to date. The PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X will both feature almost the same set of specs, including brand new processors and graphics cards, as well as fast solid-state drives that will completely eliminate the need to wait for games to load. Features like ray tracing support and 8K gameplay have been teased in Sony and Microsoft’s limited announcements so far, as well as controller improvements for even more immersive games. And backward compatibility seems to be confirmed for both consoles, which is a huge deal.
On top of all that, we’ve had several leaks that revealed the unique features of each console, like the rumored virtual assistant that’s coming with the PS5 or the futuristic spatial sound feature on the Xbox Series X. But it turns out that the best and most important marquee feature of the next consoles might be something entirely different if a brand new leak is to be believed. And it’s a detail that could give Sony, Microsoft, and all gamers huge headaches, as it’ll be a considerable factor affecting the final prices of the new PlayStation 5 and next-generation Xbox.
One of the highlights of PAX East was supposed to be the Final Fantasy VII Remake, according to an early Sony teaser, but the company updated that blog entry earlier this week to tell gamers that there won’t be a PlayStation presentation at the gaming event due to the persistent coronavirus threat.
Around the same time, a different Fantasy VII Remake piece of news was making the rounds, an image that showed the purported retail box of the game for Korea. That photo was removed from Reddit and Twitter, although the internet never forgets. Here’s that image again, via PushSquare, complete with the detail that really matters:
That’s right, this Square Enix remake for PS4 will need two Blu-ray disks because it takes up a total of 100GB. We’ve known for a while that storage will be a huge issue for the remake and that we’d get a two-disc set. But this really puts things in perspective, especially when it comes to the next-gen consoles that are about to launch.
While the leak above can’t be confirmed, the Final Fantasy VII Remake will also run on the PS5, where it’ll also require the same amount of storage.
It’s not enough that both the PS5 and Xbox Series X will feature incredibly fast SSDs that will reach speeds beyond most laptops and desktops. These consoles will also need plenty of built-in memory to deal with monster games like this one. 100GB of storage is 10% of a regular 1TB console, and that’s enormous. Sony already confirmed that the PS5 will have a novel feature for installing games, allowing players to only install the content they want to play, whether it’s a single-player campaign or just the multiplayer experience of a title. This should help a great deal with storage limitations. But gamers are likely to want to install plenty of games on the console, and they won’t like having to remove some of them to make room for the newest ones.
This new leak also reveals that games will only get bigger in the future, as the new console’s hardware capabilities will encourage developers to enhance graphics and cut scenes. Not all of them will require 100GB of storage, but Square Enix isn’t even done remaking Final Fantasy VII. This is just the first part.
That’s why the base storage of the upcoming PS5 and new Xbox will so incredibly crucial when it comes to deciding which console to buy. And it might be the reason why neither Sony nor Microsoft have announced how much their next-gen consoles will cost. SSDs are a lot more affordable than they used to be, but the more capacity you require, the bigger the price tag. Adding 2TB of SSD storage to the PS5 and Xbox Series X might be costly, and that price will be passed on to the buyer. This is important because price is the number one concern for so many gamers looking to buy a new PS5 or Xbox Series X, even more so than better graphics.
The leaks that we have seen so far said PS5 dev kit units shipped with 500GB and 1TB SSDs and the Series X development rig also featured a 1TB SSD. But we have no idea whether base storage will sit at 1TB, or if Sony and Microsoft will launch 2TB consoles this winter. Current PS4 and Xbox One console versions feature 1TB of storage at the top end.