Last night’s presentation would’ve been right at home in a boardroom. In fact, I don’t have much doubt that if such a presentation occurred for Sony’s board of directors, it wasn’t very different at all. It was the type of show meant to wow a room full of people who still, in this day and age, don’t know thing one about technology and care only about the most whizzbangs it can display and how many cool things it supposedly be able to do. Call it paranoia, but the fact that the hardware itself was never displayed, and only very scarcely talked about, scared the hell out of me. All of the games displayed were glorified tech demos, or proofs of concept (and, in Square-Enix’s case, was recycled from a previous show). There was nothing concrete at all about whether or not the Playstation 4 was even running what we saw. Sure, we saw someone manipulating a controller, but what does that mean? I can sync my PS3 DualShock with my PC right now and use it. Everything we saw last night could have very well been simply played from a PC. And what about those games? Two from established franchises, one that is essentially a mashing together of an FPS and Gran Turismo (Drive Club), a few proofs of concept (Deep Down and Square-Enix’s latest cutscene along with a “promise” that they will be making a new Final Fantasy title for the system, as though that was ever in doubt), David Cage’s Virtual Grandpa and Jonathan Blow’s Myst: Cel-Shaded Edition. I didn’t see anything indicating that Sony is attempting to court anyone beyond their established user base. They’re all safe bets, set to please the groups listed in the article. Look at the PS4 controller for a visual representation of what I’m talking about. It retains the familiar form-factor of the classic DualShock, but it integrates every bandwagon “innovation” Sony has introduced in the last five years. Motion controls? Check. Touchpad? Present. Social media sharing? That’s been present for years as well; they’re just streamlining it, which is funny because it only takes a few seconds more for me to pick up my phone to tweet something about a game than it would for the system to do it for me. It’s painfully obvious that Sony doesn’t really have anything new to bring to the table, just shinier versions of the same games and features its users have been enjoying for the last seven years. If that’s what its users want, that’s fine, but leaping to announce their hardware before being able to actually show it to potential consumers, or being able to announce a price point, or being able to discuss in detail their new online services and whether they plan to charge for them, smacks of desperation. Microsoft beat them to the punch by nearly a year during the last war of console succession and Sony wasn’t about to let the next possibility slip past. It isn’t enough. If Sony is asking for some more faith from its users, maybe they should consider conjuring an honest-to-goodness miracle or two.