How Sony’s PS5 has already lost this generation – Reader’s Feature

A reader explains why he thinks the PS5’s early lead will eventually be lost to Xbox, as he criticises the power and price of Sony’s console.

With over 13 million PS5 consoles sold in one year and new hardware pretty much flying off store shelves as soon as they land, you would think Sony is set for another winning generation but actually the smart money is on Xbox this time.

Here’s five reasons why.

Scalpers

The sales hysteria has been largely fuelled by scalpers, buying up PlayStation 5 consoles since launch last year and re-selling them immediately for profit. Reports indicate that up to 25% of PlayStation 5 consoles have never actually been turned on. They are just sitting with scalpers, waiting to be re-sold on eBay at a high mark-up. Yes, chip shortages have been rife in 2021 and Sony were coming off the back of a ton of consumer goodwill with the successful PlayStation 4, however the scalper issue has driven artificial demand. Being the console leader last gen meant scalpers have mainly focused on PlayStation 5 over Xbox Series X.

The console isn’t great

Yes, you can argue the new DualSense controller is interesting for a few hours (similar to the gimmicky Wiimote that was released with the Wii in 2006). But everything else regarding the PlayStation 5 is lacklustre when you look at the specs for the Xbox Series X. Everything is worse. It’s the biggest, heaviest, ugliest, and weakest next generation console. It has the smallest memory, the data transfer process for uploading game data is a nightmare, adding additional memory to the PlayStation 5 means taking the console apart (whereas Xbox just snaps in in seconds) and it just isn’t a very user friendly experience all round. Xbox is a powerhouse and everything just works.

Cost

Sony’s main business model is to charge £70 for the majority of new games. Or if you have a PlayStation 4 version and want to upgrade to the PlayStation 5 version it’s £10. However, on Xbox they use Smart Delivery a system where if you buy a game once, no matter where you play it, it will automatically play the best version for whatever device you are using at the time. It’s so scalable and plays great across the Xbox family of consoles, Xbox One to Xbox Series X, PC and everything in-between. Much more consumer friendly.

Games

Xbox Game Pass is commonly referred to as the Netflix of games or the ‘best deal in gaming’. A service (currently with over 20 million subscribers) where you pay a monthly fee and have access to over 100 Xbox games. This includes massive AAA games such as the recently released Halo Infinite and Forza Horizon 5 (which has already accumulated over 14 million players in just two months).

These two games alone (out of 350+ games currently on Game Pass) are service games which will be played for years. Sony’s games, although critically acclaimed, tend to be third person, single-player games that last maybe eight hours and then there’s little reason to play through again [that’s nonsense and you know it, HowLongToBeat.com puts God Of War at a minimum of 21 hours, The Last Of Us Part 2 at 24 hours, and Horizon Zero Dawn at 22½ hours – GC]. Plus, Sony currently have no answer to Game Pass and continue with their archaic model.

Past and future-proof

As a console, the PlayStation 5 has very limited backwards compatibility. Although it does play almost all PlayStation 4 games it plays none from the PlayStation 1, 2, and 3 era. Xbox however has backwards compatibility across thousands of games from all Xbox generations. You can pop in the original Xbox Halo disc from 20 years ago into your brand new Xbox Series X and it just works.

Head of Xbox, Phil Spencer has talked many times about how game preservation is important and he wants to support Xbox consumers as much as he can. PlayStation boss Jim Ryan however seems to favour locking backwards compatibility behind a subscription service where you need to pay a monthly fee to play games you might even already own.

As for the future, the Xbox is not only more powerful but was a little later in getting the console ready for developers before launch. This was to make sure cutting edge development tools were ready for the Xbox developers to be able to take full advantage of in the coming years, whereas the PlayStation 5 is built using older systems and is not as future-proof.

At first glance it seems that Sony seems to have started this console generation with a bang but when you look a little closer you can see and hear that PlayStation’s archaic and unfriendly consumer policies, weak hardware, and lack of Game Pass model are starting to switch people over to Xbox. If they really want to compete this gen, they need to change fast.

By reader @SnapBlastPlay

The reader’s feature does not necessary represent the views of GameCentral or Metro.

You can submit your own 500 to 600-word reader feature at any time, which if used will be published in the next appropriate weekend slot. As always, email [email protected] and follow us on Twitter.

Source: Read Full Article