In the realm of PC digital game purchases, the act of pre-loading games ahead of launch has become common practice, allowing the user access to the game immediately as it releases. For several reasons, consoles have been left out of the feature, but interested PS4 gamers need not worry for much longer, as the first title to make use of pre-loading has officially been announced: Destiny.

Beginning with rumors and the subsequent denial that the Xbox One would offer the option to pre-load Titanfall, it didn’t take long before a developer stated that pre-loading would be hitting the PS4 in April. While it’s implementation has taken a bit longer than expected, the introduction of PS4 pre-loading is just on the horizon as per the release of PS4 firmware update 1.7.

While many believed high-profile release Watch Dogs would mark the console’s first foray into pre-loading, the recently-updated PlayStation Knowledge Center states otherwise. Rather, Bungie’s highly-anticipated shooter Destiny will hold that honor. Not all games will allow for this functionality, as the page states that only “certain pre-ordered titles can be automatically be pre-loaded prior to their release.”

This limitation is hardly a surprise, as PC games are no different. While many games offer the option of pre-loading, the choice ultimately comes down to the developer and publisher. It’s no surprise that gamers flock to the option, jumping at the chance to be among the first to play a given game. As evidenced by past issues with accidental pre-load-based leaks though, it’s understandable that some still view the option with apprehension.

Destiny First PS4 Pre-Load Gunplay

Issues with the option aside, it’s hard to deny the excitement that pre-loading adds to the launch of a new title. Digital launches lack the visceral feeling of walking into a store at midnight to pick up a highly-anticipated title and booting it up for the first time. Having complete access to the title immediately at launch does help in providing gamers with an elevated experience that they would otherwise miss out on.

From promises of innovation to hefty production costsDestiny has a lot of hype riding on its shoulders. With the addition of pre-loading, the day-one experience is slowly becoming more tantalizing. It still remains to be seen whether the final product will live up to the anticipation but with a beta fast-approaching,  it won’t be long before gamers have a better idea of whether the game will be worth their time in the end.

Is pre-loading something that you intend to take advantage of on consoles? Do you think the option will find as much success on these platforms as it has found on PC?


Destiny launches September 9, 2014 for the PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

Follow Ryan on Twitter @ThatRyanB.

Sources: PlayStation Knowledge Center