We’ve known for quite awhile that PlayStation 4 will have mandatory game installs, but heard it would somehow be cached to not require such long install times or space being taken up. Now Sony’s Mark Cerny has explained how this process will work once you put in a game to the next generation console.
Once you insert the disc, the game will begin caching the disc to the hard drive, the size of which will depend on the game. Cerny’s example he shared was with the launch title Knack. He said that gamers should only take 10 seconds of caching to the hard drive before you can play the game, which is much less than games with mandatory game installs on the PlayStation 3. He said that Knack will be 37 GB total once it’s fully installed on the hard drive.
The cached data will remain on the hard drive until you choose to delete it, but with the quick speed of caching it back, you should be in good shape if you choose to delete it. This is very likely considering the size of games this generation. Cerny mentions that they had internal talks about having a game auto-delete the cached data for games that hadn’t been played for awhile, but they decided against it in the end.
Cerny also discussed how long it may take gamers to play games that they are downloading fully from the PlayStation Store. He said he couldn’t give an exact estimate due to varying internet connection speeds, but he said ideally that gamers wouldn’t have to wait more than an hour to start playing the game once their download starts.