The eternal video console discussion :Xbox 360 versus Playstation 3

For those who love playing videogames, it’s a discussion that has been going on since Playstation 2 and the regular Xbox. Since we entered the 7th generation of videogame consoles the situation escalated.

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What console rules the 7th generation because it’s the best? There are three consoles that are the main consoles : Nintendo Wii, Sony PS3 and Microsoft Xbox 360.

Nintendo Wii is without a doubt the most successful. Since the release date sales have been out of the roof and increased year after year.

But we ,who call ourselves hardcore gamers, don’t like the Nintendo Wii. We agree that it is a console which delivers a certain level of fun while playing games with the family or again another Mario game just because of nostalgia.  But there is not satisfaction from being on a 10-kill streak like in Call of Duty, no fun while tearing a Locust in half with a chainsaw in Gears of War or seeing Kratos pulling the dead from a God in God of War.

With other words: the Wii might be successful but it’s a kids toy.

So the real debate is not what console sells the most, which is the Nintendo Wii, but which console delivers the most pleasure to gamers and the only options appear to be Xbbox 360 and PS3 .

Keep in mind that quality of gaming also depends on your other equipment such a HD or 3D TV, a comfortable couch, no homework and others.

Similarities

Both consoles are considered as entertainment systems. Both provide the possibility to watch DVD’s, listen to music and play games. Both have the ability to buy or rent movies or series but popping in a disk is also possible. Even editing pictures can be done on the consoles.

Small differences which I won’t discuss in the text underneath are for instance that Xbox 360 offers ESPN  while PS3 offers NHL. But these differences also are different from region to region, country to country.

Both systems allow a system where pre-paid cards allow a player to go to the store buy a card for 20$/€ with a code, when inputted that code will provide 20$/€ (PS3) or 1600 Microsoft Points (Xbox 360) that can be used to buy games or other items to provide more gaming pleasure.

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All recent games provide a player with an extra challenge. Playstation Trophies and Xbox Achievements are a system which provide a challenge to the player such as simply defeating the game on hard difficulty to have a kill streak of 10. These challenges are optional and provide no reward other than a virtual bronze, silver or gold trophy (PS3) or points (360) added to your account. The amount of trophies/points represent your skills with games and are mainly use to make yourself feel better than other gamers.

Playstation 3 :

I have been familiar with Playsation since my dad bought us a Playstation in ’96. It’s was not weird that after my upgrade to a Playstation 2, I also upgraded to a Playstation 3.

A Playstation 3 device offers the ability to play videogames, watch (blue-ray) DVD’s, listen to music, built in Blu-ray player, wireless controllers, online store and online gaming.

The Playstation Network (PSN) provides a fully free online service.  Downloading/purchasing demo’s, themes, avatars, downloadable content, online gaming… only requires an internet connection. There is alPSPlusso the possibility to access a premium service called Playstation Plus.  A three-monthly or annual fee gives players access to many exclusive offers and rebates on existing offers for the regular customers.

A downside is that entirely free games are only accessible for as long the player has a subscription on PS+. All purchased avatars, themes, DLC,… remain property of the player after subscription expired.

Included is a free online facebook-type  of game. A game where players can design how their character looks and dress them up, hang out with friends in virtual apartments and use furniture to decorate. Again there is a possibility to buy premium items such as clothing, furniture, apartments,…

Most games need to be installed on the system  before they can be played. That’s why you better purchase a 160GB/320GB model.  Some games can easily take 10GB of space, for a 40GB/60GB this can provide trouble for hardcore gamers because you will have to install and remove installed games (not saved data) to play another game. However if you are just a casual gamer that plays once in a while, a 40GB/60GB provides the best support.

A Playstation console also provides a blue-ray player which provides the ability to play bigger games and watch better quality movies (also depending on the TV).

The Playstation 3 is the only console which provides a 3D experience. Already many titles have the possibility to be played in a 3D mode, only possible when equipped with a 3D TV.

Other than regular gaming (sitting on the couch with a controller) a wii-type experience is possible. The Playstation Move provides a controller. The way the controller is used reflects on in-game elements. It can be used as a shield and sword, a tennis racket or even a painting brush .

It is similar to the wii but provides a more perfected use and allows player to play hardcore games such as the FPS Killzone and Resistance 3 but only if equipped to a Move Gun.

Xbox 360 :

The 360 is not such a different console from a PS3: videogames, DVD’s, music, USB –ports, online gaming, online store, wireless controllers, a massive line up and a company that cares for its customers.

However differences can be found such as exclusive games and expensive online gaming,  A normal 360 hooked on the internet will provide the same type of online store as PSN. The ability to buy games, DLC, themes, soundtracks,… or download free demo’s, free themes, free DLC,…  This is called Xbox Live Silver/Free

Xbox-Live

But a major difference is the online gaming. To game online you must have access to Xbox Live Gold. You must pay a fee every year, three months or whatever you prefer. This fee only provide the access to online gaming. Without Gold there is only access the single player/campaign. Since this fee has to be paid annual (or other) many gamers find this reason enough to chose for the possibility to game online for free in a PS3.

But because of the fee, the 360 provides a much better online gaming service than a PS3.

In May 2011 the PS3 experienced malfunction because of a hack by hackers group LulzSec. This hack resulted in an outage of the entire PSN system. The lack of online gaming, online store or just keeping in contact with game buddies was enough for many gamers to change to a 360. It is rumored that because PSN consist mainly of free services that the system was less protected because it lacked the income. It is also rumoredKinect_Lifestyle1 that because of the fee that Microsoft is better capable of defending the online gaming service and better capabilities of putting the system back online after a hack.

So it might come at a price but the online segment of the 360 is better protected and organized then the PS3. For gamers who enjoy playing Call of Duty  (and others) online, the 360 will provide a better service then a PS3 can.

A minor difference is  that games don’t need to be installed on the hard disk. On a PS3 which is fully used there are pictures, movies, music and games installed. Because certain games can easily demand 7GB each, a  lot of space is needed to put all those games. A 160GB or 320GB is recommended for the serious gamer while an 60GB is big enough for the amateur gamers. A 360 doesn’t demand such a space. A 4GB 360 gamer is able of playing ten different games in a day with little patience while a  80GB PS3 gamer might need to remove a lot of data like movies  or other games to make room to install the data.

Another minor difference is that console can be better connected with a PC, this is due because the console is made by Microsoft like many PC’s.

Other than regular gaming (playing in a couch in front of a TV), the 360 is able to be connected to a Kinnect device. This device is camera which makes a controller free experience possible. It opens a lot of possibilities where a man actually is the game character  and where his movements in a living room can be imitated by the game character.

Most of the current Kinect games have proved to be disappointed for the hardcore audience. Children on the other side seemed pleased with most of the games giving the 360 the image of a children’s console.

What about the PC?

The PC is not considered to be on the same level as the 360 and PS3. It’s most likely to find a PC at someone’s house than it is finding a 360 or PS3. The PC is not being discussed between fan boys because it is simply no console. The greatest benefits from a PC is that the graphical level is superior to others, modding is very easy, shooters play a lot better and it can be transported very easily (if laptop). A downside is while videogames on consoles upkeep on improving without changing the hardware, a PC needs to upgrade parts regular to keep advanced graphics and maximal enjoyment which can be expensive on the long term.

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Exclusive games

The largest part of videogames available to each console are available to the other consoles (= third party games).  There are often small difference between these games. Some games receive exclusive DLC like characters, weapons, … depending if you buy a 360 or a PS3 version. Other than that graphical level tends to be different on occasion.

There are also a lot of videogames exclusive to one or the other console, sometimes for a limited amount of time and sometimes for ever (= first party games).

These games often convince people to buy that specific console since that game isn’t available on the competition. The success of a console is often defined by the amount of exclusive games however just like all, it’s all based on personal taste. A 360 is considered to be the best online console and FPS are considered best played online. If you don’t like playing a FPS, you might be tempted the competition to play on the Playstation Move.

The PS3 is considered to be the console with the most exclusive offers resulting in a big success for the console. But if you prefer to play the exclusive games on 360 for whatever reason then the amount of PS3 exclusive games means nothing to you.

Because of the paid subscription, a 360 provides better online support. However that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy gaming on a PS3 system. Because online gameplay is a feature that most games possess, most of the PS3 exclusives such as the very popular Uncharted franchise also provide an online experience that can’t be experienced on a 360.

Comparison

It’s not easy to say which console is better, it all depends on taste.

When you are looking to play mainly online First Person Shooters, then you need a Xbox 360.

Do you want to experience an intense 3D experience, go with a PS3.

Both the PS Move and Xbox Kinect provide services/games for children. So both consoles can be used for adults and their children. However it is played entirely different. The PS Move still offers a controller while Xbox Kinect is hands free. It is all a matter of preference.

Price is also very important to keep in mind before purchase. A PS3 is more expensive then a Xbox 360 and because of the blu-ray player that is a fair offer. A student who have to buy a console with only his allowance might buy a 360 while someone who works might more easily buy a PS3.

Personal Experience.

I have owned a PS3 console for about two years. I never considered a 360 back then because I was a Playstation fanboy. The largest amount of my games are therefore PS3 games.

I have bought a 360 couple of months ago, I was tired of don’t being able to play certain games I wanted such as Splinter Cell Conviction and Gears of War (both 360 exclusives) to name a few.

Now I am able to play all games I want (not really into Nintendo). When games are released I can choose which version I buy. I mostly buy only 360 exclusives but if a third party game presents itself as cheaper and maybe some extra features that a  PS3 version doesn’t have, I will buy that version.

I own a 500GB PS3 system and a 4GB 360 system. In the future I will purchase more third party games for the 360 so I won’t have to remove one or two installed games and I can play games without waiting 30 minutes installing. When opportunity presents itself I might buy a PS3 with a larger storage.

I am more a type of gamer who buys a game for the single player campaign. Therefore online gaming isn’t something I do that often. It would be a waste for me to have a Xbox live gold subscription.

I do not own a Kinect or Move system but I intend to do in the future.

Mr_Freaker (PSN) – Damon Freaker (Xbox Live)

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