Sony is currently advertising a role at its Bend studio for a Senior Staff Gameplay Programmer with "Next Gen game console experience" and expertise in "UNREAL technology".
The job listing shows that the Sony studio is "seeking a Senior Staff Gameplay Programmer to contribute to our development process" and that the successful applicant should have "Next Gen game console experience" and a "strong understanding and familiarity with current UNREAL technology".
Now, this is exciting news for three reasons.
First, it confirms that the studio is potentially looking to produce games for a "Next Gen game console", and considering that Bend is a Sony-owned studio, that means the PS5 or the recently rumoured 5G PlayStation Portable. After all, Bend is the studio behind past Sony-exclusives such as Uncharted: Golden Abyss and Syphon Filter.
Second, the phrasing of the job listing indicates that a next-generation console, likely in the form of a dev kit, already exists, as the job listing asks for applicants who already have "Next Gen game console" experience. How could they have that experience unless the hardware already exists in some form? Sure, that next gen console experience might not be gained with a PS5 dev kit, but if not, then surely it must have come from an Xbox Two or Nintendo Switch 2.
Third, the fact that the job listing places an emphasis on applicants needing a "strong understanding" of "UNREAL technology", mere weeks after the engine's maker, Epic Games, released a series of videos showing off its next-gen Unreal Engine 4 at GDC 2018, suggests to us that PlayStation 5 games worked on by Bend will likely use that engine and look spectacular.
Seriously, watch this Unreal Engine tech demonstration video now to see just how spectacular digital characters in games on the PS5 could be:
The timing for the job listing also makes sense in light of the PS5 release date, which has been widely reported as landing in 2020. Then there's the apparent need for powerful, next-gen hardware to power games with such spectacular graphics, and that hardware is rumoured to include AMD's next-gen Navi graphics tech.
Whatever Sony Bend has planned we're excited for it here at T3. And, with E3 2018 just around the corner, we may very well see the unveiling of some other hot new AAA titles that could be destined for the PS5 as well.
Lead image credit: Epic Games / Unreal Engine