Back in 2013 Sony took Microsoft's mojo. On stage at E3 they announced that not only was their console cheaper than the VHS player lookalike that was the Xbox One Home Entertainment Centre but you were also able to share games the good old fashioned way - a disc. It was hilarious but a cheap shot at a very forward thinking Microsoft who hadn't really worked out all the kinks of digital game downloads and were testing the initial idea of Game Pass and GaaS. Even me being an Xbox 360 fan I saw the funny side but was also a little pissed at Microsoft for their arrogance.
It then came out that the Xbox One Home Entertainment Center did not have the guts to hit 1080p or 60fps and definitely not at the same time. Did I care about 1080p gaming before I knew that? No. Did I care when I'd been made aware of it? Absolutely! I want my money's worth! Sony marketing went to town and released viral campaign after campaign touting the PS4's TFLOP advantage over the XOne. They even released a remastered version of their greatest PS3 game - running at 1080p/60fps. It was game set and match in the first year. Sony had played a good game and the Solid snake side of me jumped for joy - the Master Chief cried like a little girl.
Now it seems history is repeating itself but the boot is somewhat on the other foot. It seems that Sony have again become the arrogant, PS3 Sony and not taken their competition seriously - much like Microsoft did pre Xbox One when they were basking in the glory of the 360. Sony's PS5 is now slower (according to their own measurement of performance they used against the XOne - the teraflop). It's gone disc-less so is now ironically limiting how games are shared and you're sucked into their $70 a game eco system on the PS Store. Comparing price per TFLOP its more expensive. Can it handle 8K? Probably not. Do I care? No. Will I care when I'm told it's a problem? Absolutely! I want my money's worth! However, for some reason the outrage towards Sony (and the marketing campaign) is less severe than it was towards Microsoft. Why?
7 years ago I made my decision to stick with Microsoft and bought the Xbox One Day Zero Edition. However, it was already tainted. Even after Microsoft back tracked on many things I was still told it was slower, couldn't hit 1080p, the Kinect would spy on my kids so turn it off or I'd be sorry. I looked for the wrong in the console and not the right - it was destined to fail because we wanted it to. Why? PS4's better price per TFLOP ironically. Developers left and so did my buddies who soon jumped ship and went to the 4 and I gladly bought one too. Spiderman was great, God of War was epic and Horizon ZD was...noisy thanks to my PS4 fan struggling to keep things cool. Sony was great again and I find that Sony are better when they have some competition. On a side note, I'm intrigued to see how they behave this gen and happy to see that Microsoft still have an appetite for gaming and keep nipping them at the heels. Anyway, Msoft of course tried again releasing the One X back in 2017 which was much more like it and later introduced Game Pass which is excellent. Things improved and I therefore learnt a valuable lesson: ignore the media hype and wait. You don't have to pick a side - we're not at war. I have found the benefit in being patient and not getting rolled up in the pre-order fiasco. Have it now! It will change your life! Why? What's new exactly?
Personally, I am underwhelmed by both new consoles and their lack of next gen games. My Xbox One X will still handle new games and those next-gen only games from Sony are actually coming to the 4 so I'll stick with mine for now. Therefore, time and experience has told me to wait until the media hype has died down, the OS kinks are ironed out, there's no RROD/YLOD, the games look like next gen games and the all important price has come down. I suggest you do the same.
Thanks for reading - enjoy the waiting game.