We are in a very exciting time for video games right now, with Microsoft and Sony putting out the Xbox One and the PS4. Everything is new, and flashy, and there’s all the promises of things being better than ever for video games and other entertainment with the new consoles. With all the excitement around these consoles you just have to go out and buy one right? Wrong.
I’m here to help hold all of your imaginary hands through this next month of your impulses wanting the new and the flashy. Next generation consoles are a great thing, but history has shown us time and time again that’s usually a good idea to wait. This past generation (Xbox 360/PS3/Wii) is a great example to go by. Now Nintendo’s Wii is mostly exempted from this, as it had few and far between issues since launch. But the Xbox 360 and PS3 are totally different stories. Xbox 360 had the infamous “red ring of death” and many issues with overheating. To this day the disc reading laser of the Xbox 360 is putting burns into the discs of games with the slightest movement while the console is on. The PS3 had the “yellow light of death” and issues with the hard drives crashing making the console unusable and in most cases needed replacement.
With this new generation comes a new set of problems for both PS4 and Xbox One. Since day one of the PS4’s launch there has been reports of the console having an almost PC like “Blue Screen of Death” making the system unusable for any means. Sony has reported that the issue is estimating to affect 1% of PS4 buyers which out of the 1,000,000 sold would mean 10,000 consoles are affected by this problem. Xbox One, which launched today, is having a much different problem where reported instances are stating their consoles can’t play disc-based games. The system can access other functions, and can play digital downloads, but once you put in a disc to play these reported consoles make horrible noises that sound like your game is being eaten. Microsoft is aware of the issue and is estimating it will be a small amount of consoles however no official number as I am writing this has been released at this time.
Another issue that both these consoles seem to facing is that they are not shipping (or patched) with huge features that should be there day 1. Xbox One is currently not shipping with support of Dolby Digital 7.1. That won’t be a big deal for most consumers, but for those with man caves, that will be an issue. Xbox One is also stating that the HDMI sound is only in beta and that one of the systems biggest features – Twitch streaming – is not released on day 1 and there is no idea on when it will actually launch. The PS4 OS doesn’t feel very complete, and is being updated constantly as days go by. Plus, the PS4 Twitch feature does not allow for Twitch Archive yet. The PS4 also is shipping without its much talked about suspend mode that puts your PS4 into a PC-like sleep mode. This means that things like charging your controller will have to be done while your PS4 is on, and it can only do updates and downloads while it is on as well.
On both the PS4 and Xbox One, the exclusive game selections have a lot of dirt covering up a gold nugget or two. The highlights for PS4 are in its free-to-play games, such as already popular shooter Blacklight: Retribution, and indie launch titles. The biggest one that’s shining out of the pack is indie game Resogun. This game has a Defender old-school feel to it and seems to be quite fun. The game is also free right now as well if you have a Playstation Plus membership. The Xbox One is not free of a good share of let downs either, though when it comes to games. The only highlights for its launch are appearing to be zombie infested Dead Rising 3 and driving simulator Forza 5. The Xbox One, unlike the PS4, is very weak when it comes to digital only indie games as well. All the cross generation games such as Assassins’s Creed IV: Black Flag, Call of Duty: Ghosts, and Battlefield 4 among others all seem to be even better on the new generation of consoles however they are available on PS3 and Xbox 360 as well.
If after all of this you still feel the need to buy the PS4 and Xbox One, well I have no more to say to sway you in the other direction. Just note that history shows that if you wait until summer or holiday the year after the console releases you will have a newer and better version of that console waiting for you at the same for a cheaper cost. If you can do that, you will be rewarded with a better console, less bugs, more features, and most importantly more games. I hope that this was an enlightening moment for you impulse buyers out there and that you will be able to save your wallets a gut punch to what could quickly turn into a regretful buy.