- (Photo: Reuters)
Microsoft versus Sony, XBOX One versus Playstation 4, could the battle for console supremacy help re-spark an ailing video game industry by one-uping each other, or is it just a battle for who can do more cool stuff?
With videogame sales decreasing yearly thanks to free independent games, devices, and the sale of used games and consoles, the video game developers are pulling out all the stops to try and create something special that is worth people's hard earned money.
The XBOX One and Playstation 4 are not just competing against each other, they are competing to see who keeps video games alive.
Every generation has seen at least two consoles go head to head, and with each ensuing time span the companies add bells and whistles to the systems in hopes of outshining the other. In the early 90s, Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo fought over 16 bit graphics with who had the better color spectrums, audio, and speed.
The late 90s brought out the battle for superior 3D graphics with Playstation and Nintendo 64, with the millennial's consoles first focusing on video game libraries and then next generation real graphics. Now with today's next console era, the graphics can't get much better, motion control remotes and systems already exist, so what is next?
XBOX One and Playstation 4 will be much more than just a platform to play video games. These all in one machines will have online capabilities just about as fully functional as a computer, they will be able to watch and stream movies, listen to music, Skype, watch cable, and the options of growth are limitless.
With that being said, is this what people want? Is the XBOX One or Playstation 4 supposed to take over every option for entertainment? The only thing they are competing over now is, which does more, and who does it better.
Lets take a look at some of the specs of the two consoles.
The XBOX One will be $499 while the Playstation 4 is set for a $399 release.
"Sony and Microsoft still have work to do in order to convince a broad consumer base that they need to spend $400 or $500 on new hardware, in addition to $60 for each new piece of software," R.W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian said. "There doesn't seem to be as clear a reason to upgrade compared to prior cycles, which introduced DVDs, 3D and HD to consumers."
Each will use cloud based gaming systems along will all of the other features listed above.
The main differences between the consoles are the way they treat online and used gaming.
XBOX will require constant Internet access and will only be playable without an Internet connection for 24 hours, then the user will get locked out.
Another thing XBOX is doing, depending on the game developer, it will not be able to play used games. The move makes sense for developers and XBOX who do not make profit off of used game sales, however, the consumer must wonder why they should pay $60 when you can get it cheaper. Along with this, games will be set up so that they can only be played by a user, as the game will register to their XBOX. That means, no sharing games unless a permanent switch is made.
Many feel this automatically gives PS4 the advantage, and is pretty much killing the XBOX One before it leaves the gate.
As far as functionality and what people look for in a console, the reviews are mixed. The Christian Post asked readers to sound off on whether they want a system for games, or a system that does everything.
"I def prefer to have my gaming console be for just games. The world we live in everything has some form of integration, however gaming is and should be treated as its own form of entertainment. You want all the bells and whistles? Get an IOS, Windows, or Android device," said musician and avid gamer, Benny Rose.
Other gamers are perfectly content with what they have already and feel the companies have lost their focus on what counts most, the games.
"Microsoft is only focusing on their current deal with cable providers to bring you cable through the Xbox instead of a standard top-box. I'm sorry, but I'm not paying 500 dollars for an overhyped cable box. Give me my [XBOX] 360 and a Roku player and I'm set," said Andrew DiLorenzo, a manager from RadioShack.
Still others, feel that consoles really are not battling for supremacy with each other, but rather they are battling with the PC.
"From my PC I can do everything a 360 can do without needing to pay extra for xbox live and only have to pay my ISP; watch TV, watch movies, play games with a wider variety of games as well as more indie & free games along with the major non-exclusive titles along with surfing the internet & having a full range of useful software for everything from professional to personal use," said Keith Foster, an advocate for PC gaming who does not understand everyone's fascination with the consoles.
He adds, "At the same time, having better hardware than the PS4 or the XB1 and being able to upgrade individual parts when there's a major leap in technology rather than trash it or keep it for the nostalgia. I mean, do you see many new games for your PS2? PS1? Xbox? N64? SNES?"
The reactions from readers tittered back and fourth between liking to have the options available for the price being paid, and just wanting to sit down and play games.
So where do you stand, is it XBOX One or PS4? Is it give me games or give me everything? Will the battle these two giants wage become the solution for the future of video games?
Please respond in the comments.