Let the games begin. The two largest gaming companies in the world – Microsoft and Sony – are ready to knock heads with their latest game console offering. Each one promises the next-gen greatness that will be so epic, you won’t ever need another game console ever again. You’ve probably heard it all before and, if you’re tired of the hype, here’s what you really need to know what what you may or may not be buying this Christmas.
You already have an Xbox 360 or a PS3, so why bother with the new toys? In a word: specs. The new specifications on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 are impressive. For starters, both will sport an 8-core CPU and a dedicated graphics processor. Both the Playstation and XBox One come with 8 GB of memory and a 500GB hard drive.
Are these things clones? Not exactly. If you’re ready to sell your old console to a company like Music Magpie, the difference comes in the finer details so you’ll want to know those.
The Xbox One does not have a removable internal hard drive. Instead, you add external storage via USB 3.0. You must also install games directly to the hard drive before playing them. Annoying? Maybe, but you should notice smoother game play from here on out.
Playstation, on the other hand, isn’t allowing you to expand the hard drive this time. It did have this option on the PS3, but they’re actually taking it away from you in the next generation. Instead, you’ll be able to swap out the internal HD with another one.
Xbox comes with its Kinect device, while Sony sells its camera add-on separate. Xbox is selling for £429, while PS4 is selling for £349.
Both the PS4 and Xbox come with controllers, but the PS4 comes with its upgraded version of DuelShock 4. It’s got a similar button scheme with a few important changes. First, the joysticks are spread a little wider so you shouldn’t be mashing your thumbs together while kicking bad guy butt. Second, the “start” and “select” buttons are gone. In their place, you’ll have “options” and “share.” Oh, also, those buttons are not in the same location as the old “start” and “select” buttons. Weird.
The Xbox One controller doesn’t look much different, but it is – very different. Microsoft spent an estimated $100 million on refining it. It gathered user inputs and made adjustments like moving the D-pad closer to the internal motherboard which gives it a stronger base and sturdier feel.
The “plus” shaped control pad is also present. There’s a redesigned chip-set with lowered power consumption which should allow you to play for about 30 hours. When you need a recharge, you should be ready to go in about 3 hours. If you’re using double-A batteries, expect about 40 hours play time.
Even the screw holes have been removed because some players start feeling ridges on the back of the controller after many hours of play. The cherry on top? Button latency has been reduced by about 20 per cent.
Services and Features
Both the Xbox and PS4 are offering multiplayer support over the Internet. For the Xbox, expect to be connected practically all of the time while playing. Both consoles also take advantage of applications like Netflix or Hulu Plus if you want to watch films or T.V. shows. You can also subscribe to unlimited music plans and stream them through your console. In a sense, you’re not just getting a gaming system. You’re getting an entertainment system.
Guest article written by: Mason WIlliamson tracks the gaming industry. He enjoys writing about news and innovations on gaming blogs.