So You Want to Get a New Console

BY KYLE VAN DEN HEUVEL

 

In November, both Sony and Microsoft released new versions of their PlayStation and Xbox consoles. With Christmas coming up, you may be thinking about getting either the Xbox One or the PlayStation 4, but you might not know the major differences between them. Hopefully, this guide can help you come to a choice on which one you should get, if either.

When it comes to power, both consoles are similar in terms that multiplatform games look close enough on either console that it shouldn’t be that much of a concern. The PlayStation 4 does technically have more power, but that power has yet to really be reached. The Xbox One does tout that it has additional power in terms of using cloud computing but it’s doubtful that cloud computing would have the same boost as better hardware would. Both consoles use Blu-Ray as their media for games and both come with 500 GB hard drives for storing downloaded games.

When it comes to launch games, neither console has their killer app yet, but that does not mean that there aren’t any decent games out for them yet. The best exclusive for the PS4 so far in terms of MetaCritic scores seems to be to be “Resogun” (83 percent), which is an old-school style shoot-em-up that plays similar to the 1980 arcade game “Defender.” Unfortunately, promising titles “Knack” and “KillZone: Shadow Fall” have received mixed to okay reviews as there games are at 55 and 74 respectively. For the Xbox One, the highest rated exclusive is “Forza Motorsport 5” at 82 percent with “Dead Rising 3” not far behind it with a 78 percent. One of the games that was highly pushed with the Xbox One was “Ryse: Son of Rome,” but that game hasn’t been received that well as it currently is scored at 60 percent. There is also some games that were previously released on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 and now have updated versions. If you like shooters, both “Battlefield 4” and “Call of Duty: Ghosts” are available for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. EA has also released their yearly sports games of “Madden 25,” “FIFA 14,” and “NBA 2K14” that should benefit from the improved graphics of these systems.

In terms of unique features, both consoles have their quirks. The PlayStation 4’s controller has a touchpad similar to the Vita that allows touch controls in games. It also has a headphone jack that allows you to listen to game audio by plugging in headphones directly into the controller. The Xbox One now comes bundled with the Kinect, which was a camera accessory for the Xbox 360 that enabled controller-free motion controls. The Kinect can accept voice commands and the Xbox One’s user interface can be controlled entirely through voice. The Xbox One also features an HDMI-in port that is meant for you to plug in a cable box so that you can actually watch live TV through the Xbox One (Although, an HDMI device should work). The Xbox One also has some multi-tasking functionality.

When it comes down to it, if you are looking for a pure games console, both consoles should perform adequately. Right now, both consoles are lacking in the games department, but that is to be expected with a new console launch. Both consoles are also a bit on the pricey side as the PlayStation 4 costs $399 and the Xbox One costs $499. It might be smart to wait a while so that both consoles libraries can grow a bit but each console is looking promising. Even the Xbox One, with the drama following the announcement (and retraction) of its DRM policies, looks like a proper successor to the Xbox 360. There has also been cases of both consoles having manufacturing defects which is also to be expected of a new console launch, so that might be worth some caution.

 

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