Yesterday, I posted about the similarities and difference between the two main consoles. I kept it as objective as I could while acknowledging my subconscious bias. The post for today will be much different. As you can see by the title of this post, I am making my final intention clear. Very clear, in fact. As you can also tell from the title, I am fully aware of the level of rebellion that has overtaken the internet, be it in facebook, twitter, and the majority of other gamer news/blogs/sites. I have a general dislike for memes that contain an out of context pic with some under informed and obviously pandering one-liner in Impact font, regardless of topic, but that’s just me. You can also get a sense of defiance in the tone of the title, since I acknowledge that I am in the minority opinion but I go forth with my own will regardless. But what you do not get is the logic behind my decision, or the line of thought that brought me to this conclusion.
Ultimately, it came down to either the PS4 or the Xbox One for me. So before describing why I did choose the Xbox One, let me explain why did NOT choose one of the other choices beyond the two Console Warriors:
- First, I have done all my gaming in the past years on Xbox, so I have my history there.
- I feel comfortable with a console format since that’s what I’ve become accustomed to. I haven’t gamed on a PC since I became legal to drive save for Diablo II in college.
- Nintendo Wii, while extremely fun, just doesn’t have the kind of epic RPG’s that I enjoy. Likewise for the Ouya.
Hardware / System Specs
First off, YES, I KNOW THAT A FULLY DECKED GAMING PC WILL GIVE THE PLAYER A SUPERIOR EXPERIENCE. Anyone with 2 brain cells that they can rub together and generate a spark knows this. If you’re willing to drop the cash for it, you can even get such an illustrious system where the video card alone is worth more than either console in its entirety, I know! I still prefer to game on a console and leave my PC for work type tasks and my console for gaming. It’s simply a matter of preference.
In a previous post, I briefly discussed how the hardware between the PS4 and Xbox One are so similar. They essentially have the same CPU and comparable RAM, and they both utilize some form of cloud computing for extended processing power. Even if the PS4 out performs by a measurable degree, I am not enough of a technophile to notice or appreciate the difference fully. Therefore, in my judgement the I feel that the hardware power between the two is a wash.
DRM (Digital Rights Management)
Both companies have declared that they will leave the question of DRM up to the publishers, even if Sony has phrased it differently. The Xbox One policies may be a bit more restrictive, but it will hardly be an inconvenience in my play style or behaviors. I rarely lend games to friends, and I always trade them in to licensed retailer. Therefore, I my current behaviors would not violate any terms of the DRM policies, and I will continue to game as I always have up to this date.
It has been years since I’ve gamed without an online connection. Maybe it’s because I’m a bit older and somewhat “established” or “settled” in my current lifestyle, but this is just simply the case. I fully understand and appreciate the concern that those have who do not subscribe to a home internet service because of budget issues. Believe me, I too worked 7 days a week at a 2nd job for years until I could get myself out of debt several years ago. Cutting excess where ever you can is no joke, and I could be considered fortunate in a sense being that I was not a parent or had anyone whom I was a caregiver for and depended on me for support, be it financial or otherwise. But all this empathy still does not change the fact that regardless of which console I choose I fully intend to be gaming online with a highspeed connection. If I am to end up in a situation where I can no longer afford an internet connection at home, then I will have to accept the loss of all the luxuries that come along with it.
I have also heard of some other scenarios of when your internet could go out that would be out of your immediate control, and here are my responses:
- Loss of Connection Due to Weather: If the weather is severe enough to knock out your internet connection for more than 24 continuous hours, you’ve got bigger issues than teaming up with your crew for a frag session.
- Moving to a New Home: You know you can call your service provider and have them meet you at your new address, even on moving day, to hook you back up to their network so you have no lapse in service, right?
- Server Updates: Even if the drop in servers prevent you from gaming at that moment or that day, just wait awhile. They want you to game and use their service as much as you do, so they’ll be working to ensure that your downtime will be minimal.
More than Just Gaming
When the Xbox One was first revealed, my jaw dropped at what it’s capabilities encompassed. The vast scope of inter-connectivity between Skype, Twitch TV, The NFL, Web Surfing, Voice Commands, Hand Motion Controls, The Halo TV Series, all of it! The resounding mantra from the gaming communities has been in effect “We just want to play our games! Give me my games!” while completely ignoring the rest of the console’s vision and potential. In the end, I want a system that can usher in the next evolutionary step in technological interaction.
While it is true that the PS4 costs $100 less than the Xbox One, it also does not come bundled with the Playstation Camera. It has been reported that this will cost gamers an additional $60, bringing a more accurate price difference to $40. When you’re spending in the $400-$500 range, is $40 all that significant? Depending on your situation and budget, possibly. Again, this is a matter of preference.
Even with all the above stated reasoning, I was still ready to jump ship and turn my back on my history with Xbox. I was mentally preparing myself to understand that I’ll probably never play Halo again, and some of the other games just will simply not be in my future. As I watched the new trailers for games that were continuations of series that I have not played yet, I began to think “Well, it will be something new! A whole new universe that I have yet to experience”! Sadly, one of my other main concerns was coming to terms that I’ll have to relearn the button layout on the PS controller (Couldn’t they at least agree on the location of the “X” button?). Oddly enough, what truly made me accept my fate as a future PS gamer was when they showed the new Final Fantasy XV and Kingdom Hearts 3 trailers during the Sony Conference. I have been a long time Final Fantasy fan, having played the original on the NES back when it was NEW, and thoroughly enjoyed the first Kingdom Hearts years ago. I accepted that if I were to purchase a PS4, I would at least become privy to these games. Being that they were not discussed at the Xbox One Conference, I was under the impression that they would be PS4 exclusives. Thus, If i wanted to play these long loved series, I would HAVE TO jump ship. So be it. This was to be the final push needed for me to make my decision as to whi….
But LO, what is this? As it turns out, Both these games were announced that they will be coming out for both consoles! I don’t have to jump ship to enjoy these games! I can continue on with my Xbox Gamerscore intact and continue to summon Eidolons (I still prefer the term “Espers”, damnit!) and swing my Key Blade! So it wasn’t so much the exclusive games that the Xbox One had, as much as what wasn’t exclusive to to the PS4. Odd, I know, but that’s just how it all unfolded.
So after all this, it finally comes down to a matter of principles. The arguments for and against each console have been set. All of the restrictions that Microsoft has put in to place have overwhelmingly inspired the ire and wrath of the online community. As I weigh the information in my mind, I keep coming to the same thought: Am I going to NOT buy an Xbox because it will inhibit my game playing, or out of principle? Each time I considered this thought, it was always the same result: it was out of principle.
- The hardware comparison is a wash.
- DRM policies are (almost) a wash.
- I’m always going to be playing with an online connection anyway.
- I’ll continue to trade my games in at licensed retailers.
- I’ll be able to use it for more than just gaming.
- Comparatively, it will only be $40 more.
- I’ll still get to play all the games that I truly cared about.
There is no doubt that many gamers have already made the switch to PS. There is also no doubt in my mind that they will have an extremely enjoyable experience with their new console. For me, I actually DO care about all the extras that the Xbox One will provide.
In conclusion, I will offer what others have also stated regarding the next gen consoles: If the only thing you care about is being able to play next-gen games and nothing else, go for the PS4. It’s a solid machine and won’t let you down. No risk of buyer’s remorse. But if you want your console to give you something more, you may want to take another look at the Xbox One. Just this time, without all the internet rage.
Rock on and keep gaming!