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Shuhei Yoshida: Knack was pitched as 'Crash Bandicoot for PS4'

Knack, Mark Cerny's upcoming PS4 platformer which led the game announcements at the console's debut event, was pitched to Sony brass as the PS4's own Crash Bandicoot, Sony Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida told Edge in a recent interview.

Some of the announcement event's harshest critics questioned why Knack was the first PS4 game ever shown to the world, as its mascot-driven, cartoonish veneer seems an odd bellweather for next-gen gaming. Yoshida explained that the company prioritized Knack's announcement to stymie the expectations to be a dedicated console for photorealistic, mature video games.

"It was pretty intentional," Yoshida told Edge. "Mark's idea was like ‘what about [a] Crash Bandicoot for PS4?' when he suggested the concept of Knack. We were like yeah we hate to see all the PS4 games being FPS or action-adventure or very photorealistic, you know big-budget blockbuster games. And you know people like these games but these are not the only kinds of games that people can have fun with."

Yoshida added that this philosophy aligns with Sony's thinking on the PS4 as a whole; focus less on the hardware, and more on the experiences it can facilitate.

"When you look at the five key principles behind designing PS4, none of them are hardware related, actually," Yoshida said. "It's all about how people use and experience, enjoy games, realised by the system software features and network functions."

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