Playstation, whatsamajigger

Pardon the lack of posts lately, work is taking an incredible toll on everything – including sleep.  It was bad enough that I completely forgot that Sony was announcing the PS4 and I didn’t get a chance to read up on it until this weekend.

Disclaimer here, I have a Wii, XBOX 360 and a PS3.  I played a fair amount of the first with friends but haven’t really touched it in nearly 2 years.  The second was my go-to console for a few years if only because of price and some mods I had put on the box.  I only picked up a PS3 a couple years back (since the launch price was astronomically stupid) and that was driven primarily for the Blu-Ray drive price point. The games lately have all been pretty good, especially the exclusives.  My quibbles with the console though are the following.

1)      You can only run 1 thing at a time and that one thing isn’t voice chat unless it’s part of the game

2)      Every week has some sort of update that takes 5 minutes and provides no noticeable effect

3)      Every game takes 10-45 minutes on first load due to the install

4)      The controllers have no changeable batteries, meaning a 2 year old controller has half the life of a brand new one.  Irksome.

5)      No effective way to chat type (keyboard)

6)      No non-proprietary remote control for movies

What I like about the PS3 includes:

1)      Netflix and its UI.  I just find it works better here than the Wii or XBOX 360.

2)      Blu-Ray player.  I’m thinking this is the reason that Blu-Rays are so common now.

3)      The Dashboard is clean and includes everything you want.  And it loads quickly.

4)      The games are better.  This is subjective but what’s the last XBOX exclusive you played other than Halo?

5)      Free multiplayer.

I should also include the fact that I have a gaming notebook PC.  The thing is a beast, I paid a pretty penny for it and I have dozens of games on Steam that I can play through HDMI and a controller.

So the PS4 announcement certainly had me taking note.  From what I can read about it, it’s essentially a computer with a custom operating system.  Cloud-based gaming, check.  Download games to play, check.  Integrates with Steam library, seems to be a check.  Ports and doo-dads, check. Games, sort of check though the list went from 58 to 23 this week.  More powerful than my laptop, nope.

And that’s the kicker isn’t it.  It seems as if Sony is going to launch a service rather than an actual console.  I’m ok with that, really I am.  I am concerned as to how they expect to bill us for it.  Microsoft makes a lot of money with XBOX live, though they are the only ones making money in a F2P world.  If Sony launches earlier and provides great games and no fee for multiplayer, I see a massive advantage for Sony.  If they can solve the cloud gaming issues (lag, day 1 launch load, etc…) I think we’re in for one heck of a fun ride.  The only downside I see with it, and this applies to all consoles, is that I take up the TV when I want to play.  This is not good for the wife.  Find a workaround to this, and I’m sure you’ll sell billions.

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