The PlayStation 4 is a grand machine thus far, with its souped up graphical capabilities, all the social interaction you could want, streaming game services, and generally feeling like a neat evolution on the standard gaming medium.
We as of yet know little confirmed information about the Next Xbox (May 21st needs to be here right now… seriously) and we know just about all we’re going to know about the Wii U until we get more software announcements. There is still likely so much more to show off for the PS4, but right now I can already tell this is going to be a must have console in the next 3 years (giving people time to afford it and for it to build a library you want).
Sony Has the Best Exclusive Content this Side of Nintendo
Do you want to play some wildly creative experiences like Little Big Planet? Guess what, Sony is going to provide you the tools and software to play games like that. Do you want to shoot things but not have it be this super main stream experience? They have that Killzone franchise that seems to click with people. What about some action adventure goodness? inFamous will be there. Maybe I just want to button mash people to death: It’s cool, God of War will rise eventually. Maybe I want a super high detailed experience that reminds me of Indiana Jones? Oh, Uncharted will have you covered. A totally refreshing game that breaks the norm? The Last of Us ahoy!
Much of the same reasons to own a PS3 in generation 7 are completely present for owning a PS4: Sony provides a wide variety of content, contrary to popular opinion among Sony haters. While Nintendo is the unquestioned King of unique to console experiences because of the heavy reliance solely on in house studio work to keep their platforms afloat, Sony itself has built up a pretty nice portfolio. Did you want to play Journey? You needed a PS3 for that.
It doesn’t necessarily mean Sony is the best at what they do, but they definitely know who their audience is and how to please them. Toss on the open friendliness to indie developers, something Nintendo has embraced while Microsoft still seems to push them away, and you can find a really compelling content driven reason to own a PS4. It’s going to have a lot of great exclusive content for all ages. You don’t want to miss out on some of the best experiences of this next-generation, do you?
Profiles, Sharing, and All That Stuff Feels Like a Natural Social Media Extension
Social media is popular. People are familiar with it, how it functions, and generally like the type of service it provides. Sony is taking that service and integrating it into their infrastructure. Sure, Sony is going to know everything you’re doing, but realistically if you are an internet user someone always knows what you’re doing at any given moment. It just so happens we know it’s Sony who is tracking you. Doesn’t bother me, considering that Facebook already tracks me and has all of my personal information sans my social security number.
Add on the fact that Sony is allowing people to watch you play games across the net without needing to hook up the system to your PC and stream, and you have one nifty concept. Oh, you can instantly record videos, upload to YouTube… and take screenshots whenever you want? Seems like silly innovations, but they are important ones for the future of the industry.
Nintendo’s Miiverse may be a neat community and a censored, but hefty, Twitter like program combined with a Forum Community style feel… but do you know what’s better than that? Not requiring people to use an entirely new social medium – just let them use the Twitter and Facebook stuff they already use every day. Sony gets it.
It’s a Big Enough Power Leap to Not be Obsolete for At Least 5 Years
The Wii U is already behind. The Next Xbox is rumored to have similar specs, but not quite as ahead of the curve as Sony is with their 8 GB of GDDR5 Ram in the PS4. The PS4 can probably, at consistent frame rates to boot, produce better graphical fidelity than your local PC while doing the same amount of multi-tasking that kept PC gaming so unique.
That won’t always be the case – in fact for the super high end PC gamers out there I am sure they have or will have boxes that are more powerful than a PS4 at launch. But by the time that tech becomes common and mainstream in the PC market for gaming, the PS4 will still be a cheaper alternative that will produce graphics capable of consumers not noticing a general difference… while still probably having a better interface.
The OS is Not Windows 8, nor is it the Wii U
This is more of a knock against Windows 8 and the mess of an OS Nintendo tossed out at the Wii U’s launch. It’s true that the Wii U had an update and in general I do like some of the Wii U’s interface, but in a realistic view I know it could be so much better.
Meanwhile, I use windows 8 every day. I’ve seen the newer Xbox 360 dashboards. If it’s just going to be more of the same with a new OS that doesn’t even feel like it does anything but restrict users even more… I can’t see how the Sony interface is going to magically drop the ball. I wasn’t the biggest fan of the original interface of the PS3, but there is something to be said for the pure simplicity of it all.
We cannot know if this point is truly relevant just yet, since we need to see more of the PS4 and the Next Xbox to really tell what’s going on, but the fact remains I am fairly confident Sony isn’t going to screw this one up. Not when they have so many robust user options available already.
Sony Has Proven with PlayStation + That They Understand Online Account Systems
I am sure many of you have heard of Steam. Its one thing PC gamers have been touting over console gamers for a long time. We have steam, and while it technically is a very smart form of “DRM”, the greatest aspect it provides is the fact that not only can you recover any games you remove in one interact, there are sales. Lots and lots of sales. They reward their consumers by offering free content, or offering some of the best content from mere months ago at greatly reduced prices. It’s a fun little system that sees people buying packages of games they may never even play.
Consumers like to feel they are getting a value. Sony’s PlayStation Plus program, while technically a paid account program, practically pays for itself when you consider the free games… nay even the discounted titles you are able to get. While at first it seemed silly since the PSN was free (and yes, Steam is free too), reality is if they can keep packing enough ‘free’ content into the package, combined with a slew of sales (even the Wii U is seeing its share of sales… just no bundles yet) it’s going to be a user’s dream. While other consoles are going to follow suit, Sony already had the system in place and will likely vastly improve upon it.
To the point where we may be asking ourselves: What is truly a better system: Steam or the PlayStation 4 Network?
What are you looking forward to most with the PS4?