Now That E3 is over, all the dirty details on the next generation of consoles are hanging out in the open. Microsoft and their Xbox One went into E3 with a lot of bad publicity; their only goal for their presentation was to redeem themselves. While they seemed to do a good job at that kicking off E3 day one with their presentation, some of their statements or things left unsaid left a lot of fans rubbed the wrong way. Sony and their PlayStation 4, however didn't have a reputation to repair, but they had a lot of details they needed to bring to the table. With the PS4 conference closing day one of E3, fans almost unanimously agreed that they blew Microsoft out of the water!
When Microsoft revealed their Xbox One console, they talked all about how it was another way to hook all your media together. However, for a gaming console, they sure neglected to talk about actual games coming to the console. However, they redeemed themselves at their E3 panel by revealing stunning new games and in great mass.
When Sony revealed their console, they made a promise to gamers: that they would return to their roots and make up for their previous faux pas that they made with the PlayStation 3. However, they neglected to reveal the design of their new console, leaving only a blurry video of the box.
However, after Microsoft announced that there would used game fees and an always-online mandate, people feared the same would come from Sony. Sony decided to take a stand for gamers at E3 by saying NO to used game fees and NO to always online, while Microsoft's conference carefully dodged not addressing the subject at all. To make things worse, Don Mattrick president of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business went on to say if players don't want to play always online, they should just stick with the Xbox 360. A real good way to sound like a jerk, Don.
While Microsoft executives were busy not helping their console, PS4 executives were busy making a funny video about how easy it is to share games on PS4, contrasting Microsoft's confusing system to PS4's simple handing the game over to someone. Everyone knows humor is a quick way into the hearts of gamers; it is probably why in an IGN poll 81% of gamers said Sony won E3.
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However, in June a week or so after E3 Microsoft announced that they were reversing their stance on always online and used game fees. Even though they specifically said just weeks earlier that they would not cave to consumer pressure.
Of course, no one can forget Nintendo and their Wii U, or can they? Nintendo's conference aired on the second day, so that immediately put them at a disadvantage. There is also the possibility of the Wii U, since it has already been released, getting forgotten in the fierce PS4 vs. Xbox One hysteria. However, Nintendo came out swing with some classic long awaited games, but nothing really new. This is something fans have come to expect from Nintendo. It is a console for people who fear change.
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Let's break down this generation of console wars into a table:
|Feature||Playstation 4||Xbox One||Wii U|
|RAM||8GB GDDR5||8GB DDR3||2GB DDR3|
|CPU||Single Chip x86 AMD "Jaguar" processor, 8 cores||Custome 8 core Microsoft CPU||PowerPC "Espresso" CPU|
|Optical Drive||Blu-ray DVD||Blu-ray DVD||25GB Optical Disc Drive|
|Storage||500 GB Removable and Upgradeable Hard Drive||500 GB Non-Removeable Hard Drive||8 or 32 GB Flash|
|External Storage||N / A||Yes, USB||Yes, USB|
|Mandatory Game Installs||No||Yes||No|
|Used Game Fees||No, but publishers have the option||No, but publishers have the option||No|
|Backwards Compatibility||None||None||Yes, Wii|
|Cross Game Chat||Yes||Yes||No|
|Motion Control||PS4 Eye, PS4 Move, neither included||Kinect 2, included and mandatory connection||Wii Remote, Wii U Gamepad (included)|
|Second Screen Tablet Interface||PS Vita (sold seperately)||SmartGlass (sold seperately)||Wii U Gamepad (included)|
|Voice Commands||Yes, with PS4 Move||Yes, with Kinect 2||No|
|Subscriptions||Playstation Plus ($17.99 per 3 monthes, no monthly subscription option), Plus subscription from PS3 and Vita does transfer over||Xbox Live ($9.99 per month), Live from Xbox 360 does transfer over||None|
|USB||USB 3.0||USB 3.0||USB 2.0|
|Live Streaming Gameplay||Yes||Yes||No|
|Reputation Crossover||Trophies will be transferred over||Achievements will be transferred over||N / A|
|Web Connection||Ethernet, IEEE 802.11 b/g/n||Gigabit Ethernet, IEEE 802.11 b/g/n WiFi||IEEE 802.11 b/g/n WiFi LAN via USB|
|Blue Tooth||Blue Tooth 2.1||None||Blue Tooth Support|
|Audio / Video Hookups||HDMI, Analog, Optical output||HDMI input and output, optical output||HDMI output, Component / Composite out|
All of the techy bits are all fine and dandy, however gaming consoles are always about the gaming, so what exclusives has each console been able to garner from developers?
This list does not count PC games that will also be playable on a particular console. These are games you can ONLY play on the specified console.
Dead Rising 3
Forza Motorsport 5
A New Halo Game
Kinect Sports Rivals
Ryse: Son of Rome
Zumba Fitness Party
inFamous: Second Son
Killzone: Shadow Fall
Octodad: Deadliest Catch
The Order: 1886
Super Smash Bros.
Mario Kart 8
Those are all the exclusives for Wii U, many companies are refusing to make Wii U exclusives until they well more consoles, but it shares many games that are also appearing on other consoles.
Clearly there are negative things about each console, whether it is the amount of games, the hard ware, the cost, or flexibility. Whatever those negatives are for you, they are hardly deal breakers. Well, except for Microsoft's policy on used games and always online, those are kind of deal breakers. However, they make up for it with mind boggling amounts of exclusive games.
Regardless, there are some great consoles out there for the next generation of console gaming with plenty for everyone. Not to mention that all the games just look so beautiful on every console.