Xbox, Playstation, Nintendo Switch, or PC
By Jacob Fisher, Broadcast Editor
Gaming is one of the fastest-growing entertainment industries today. With 135 billion dollars made in 2018, the market dominates the global movie industry, which is going to make a projected 50 billion dollars in 2020. This might just be the time to buy a console and enjoy the success – and massive budgets – of the modern gaming industry. Why the growth remains so fruitful is because of the intense competition between Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo. With the rebirth of gaming by the Nintendo Entertainment System, to the dominance of Sony’s PlayStations in the 90’s, to the sixth-generation American threat that was the original Xbox, the market has had its glorious winners. Today, there are three main choices for your modern consumer: the PlayStation 4, the Xbox One, and the Nintendo Switch. With price tags as high as 500 dollars, what is the best investment? And are there any better options?
If you are in the market for a traditional console, something that will play games for years to come, you should be on the lookout for an Xbox One S or a PlayStation 4 Slim. Prices for these consoles have fluctuated, with a brand-new Xbox One S 1TB being priced at nearly 200 dollars from a third-party seller, while the PlayStation 4 Slim from the same seller at the same quality can go for as much as 250 dollars. A price difference such as this can be attributed to many variables, but why PlayStation costs more is mainly due to consumers preferring them.
For most people over at /r/PlayStation on Reddit, they choose PlayStation for the exclusives. On this, user TheRed24 says, “PlayStation always has the best games that I want to play… there’s a reason why it’s been proven PS fans are the most brand loyal. [They] have never given us a reason to doubt them.” Other users within the forum listed off their favorites, such as God of War, Spider-Man, and Last of Us. Most consumers online agree, if you are playing consoles for the exclusives, you go PlayStation.
Meanwhile, many people over on /r/Xbox and /r/XboxOne were very happy about the Xbox One’s affordability, ergonomics, and a service called Game Pass. A newer Xbox service release, Game Pass Ultimate, provides users with a discount with a bundle of online gaming access, along with a library of Xbox games that comes with the normal Game Pass. Icedearth14324 comments on pricing, “You can get an Xbox One S brand new on Amazon for 220 dollars. A year of Gold is 50 to 60 dollars, and if you get the [Game Pass Ultimate] upgrade, that gets you full access to the GP catalog of over 200 games... so fiscally, it is an amazing choice”. Other users cite their friends being on the platform, the “superior Xbox controllers”, and the ability for cross-platform play among other systems. By pure number of sales, however, Sony wins. The PlayStation family crushes the competition with the whole family being in the top five best-selling consoles. Sony’s PlayStation 4, the most recent PlayStation, wins this generation.
In terms of sales this year, Nintendo is still on top. They have consistently outsold all of their competitors because of new ideas. They questioned when and where consoles should be played.“You can play between classes, on lunch breaks, on bus rides… PS4s, [XB1s] and PCs have to stay at home.” /u/TheSupremeAdmiral of the Nintendo Switch subreddit continues, “The Switch has a huge number of local co-op games for socializing, and by default comes with [two] controllers. Literally just bring a Switch with Mario Kart on it and you have something to do with friends”. Nintendo devastates in this category, as a portable, social experience that no other console can afford to compete in. This is the platform for the social, busy, and mobile.
For some, these options are unappealing, as if these traditional consoles lack power, customizability, or longevity. Some consumers would much rather have a PC, the no-compromise nuclear option to gaming and productivity. People who buy into computer culture are devoted; in fact, they have called themselves the “PC Master Race” in reference to the premium benefits to building your own machine. Many users also report cost savings compared to consoles, due to the cheaper games, lack of online subscriptions, sales on hardware, and availability of other products. /u/Refect420, a part of the PC Master Race subreddit, describes substantial savings compared to other people who bought into consoles. His friends ended up paying “a lot more” compared to his PC, even discounting them having to buy their own laptops. Today, you can easily build a PC, one that is comparable to an Xbox One S or PS4 Slim, for under 600 dollars.
This generation’s platforms reflect a wide range of ways and reasons to play. PlayStation is for their exclusives, Xbox, for cost-effectiveness. The Nintendo Switch is for mobility, and PC for the wide array of titles and productivity. The investment, despite the market competition, is enormous. With the recent failure of Google’s game streaming software Stadia, it may be a long time until affordable gaming reaches the masses. The oncoming next-generation PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X are soon to be released this Holiday 2020. However, if you are looking for the most affordable way to get into gaming before the summer season, a console or PC are both excellent choices.
The Mustang Post
All feature news content is produced by students in the Newspaper program at West Fargo Sheyenne High School.