I have to fess up. Back in 2007, I bought a Wii. Why? Both the XBox 360 and the PS3 were way too expensive. The Wii was affordable, and different. But then it took a bad turn.
In about a year and a half I bought something like eight games including Mario Galaxy, Paper Mario, MarioKart, Zelda, some war game whose name eludes me, Resident Evil 4, and I can’t remember the rest.
Seriously. It was that bad.
With every passing game I thought to myself “this is going to be the game where the Wiimote proves truly innovative, and it never came. In fact, I think the game I owned that showed the most promise was actually Resident Evil 4. And that was ported from the PS2! Fast forward a year or so, and a friend of mine tells me his cousin is selling his 360 for $200.00.
Halo 3, GTA IV, Modern Warfare… commence drooling. I’m an FPS fan at heart, but admittedly more of a casual player. I’ll experiment with in-game physics, or put another way, I’m more taken by the flashing lights, and the ridiculous carnage in each one of these games, enough so that I rarely play with a winning strategy, opting instead to see if I can sticky grenade a guy from some incredible distance.
And I have the videos to prove it.
Yes, I’m what you might call a casual, but I’m looking at the next-gen list, eagerly anticipating a definitive review, and noticing that in my game collection, there are really only a handful of exclusive titles for the XBox. The two I’m most partial to are Left 4 Dead, and Halo. But, is that enough to keep me backing Microsoft?
There are a handful of Playstation exclusive titles I’d love to get my hands on like Killzone: Shadow Fall, and I’ve always felt anxious not being able to play anything Naughty Dog.
So, then, what’s it come down to for me?
Maybe a few things.
Firstly, I really prefer the XBox controller to the Playstation. It just feels better, like it’s made for me. If that’s consistent with the XBox One then I’d rather continue down that line. However…
Mandatory game installs, mandatory Live, and always online really rub me the wrong way. I haven’t borrowed games more than once in the past ten years, but the fact that you can’t trade games with others who have an XBox is downright confounding.
Even given that Microsoft has walked back virtually everything they’ve said about all of the above, I’m not sure the system they’re building is for me so much as it is for developers, and publishers who want to start policing their gamers. On top of that it seems like this close to the release, something like that can’t be changed without throwing a wrench into some sort of longterm plans for the XBox One, so I’m skeptical about the future of the system at this point.
Pricing… the XBox One is actually $100.00 more than the PS4. That’s enough to make a difference for me. Especially if I have to get Live.
And finally, the most important thing, which one is going to get better over time? The first round of games isn’t really that important to me, because nobody really knows how to build games for either system yet. But which one is going to push developers into new territory?
In case you haven’t heard, Amazon just opened a game studio and hired a director of narrative who’s written and shaped game franchises including Halo and Gears of War, and while Amazon is mainly focusing on mobile, maybe they’ll throw their hat into the console ring in the near future. At the very least, they have considerable resources to change the future of gaming, and it appears that that’s exactly what they want to do.
So, which one is going to win? I doubt either is going to put the other to rest. If I had my way, I’d probably get both, but in the end I think the XBox One controller might be the deciding factor for me given that most of the games I play aren’t exclusives, and that they reversed their position on all the crazy mandates they laid out earlier this year.
Have you decided which console you want to get, and why? Let me know in the comments below!