If you ever wanted to know the definition of the word ‘domination’, look no further at the gaming industry and what PlayStation is doing to its competitors right now. From the beginning of this generation, Sony has played its part almost perfectly. It is a great time to be a gamer and most of it is because of what the PlayStation doing for us. Sony designed its console to be future proof, laid down the foundations for what is to come and whilst it started off a little slow, which is somewhat understandable at the beginning of a new generation of consoles, it has more than made up for it by showing such incredible momentum that the notion of any of its competitors even matching its performance seems like sheer folly. So how has PlayStation managed to do that and what does this spell for Xbox and others trying to go toe to toe with the Muhammad Ali of gaming?
Greatness Is Here
Oh how things have changed from a few years ago. A couple of years ago in June, myself and Ilyas went toe to toe in the debate regarding PlayStation 4 exclusives versus those on the Xbox One. Safe to say, the PS4 didn’t fare all that well because, quite frankly, we were all waiting for the ‘greatness’ Sony had been alluding to for so long. The video below may serve as hard viewing, mostly because of my trolling but saved by Seif’s crisp eating antics but the point was clear; for all the sales domination and thorough battering the PlayStation 4 was handing out to the Xbox One, the disparity in the availability of the two competing platforms didn’t reflect the one-sided nature of Sony’s gains.
Rightly so, PlayStation was called out for its relatively mute start compared to all the noise it was making. Fast-forward two years on and the situation has completely changed. Sony has done its followers proud, by holding up to its covenant that ‘Greatness Awaits’ and proving without doubt that it truly is ‘For the Players’. How has it done that? Simple. By doing what it should be doing and that’s delivering the games.
Why can’t I hold all these exclusives?
Exclusives matter, regardless of whether you believe or have heard otherwise. A sizeable chunk of the value proposition of a console is based on what unique content it can deliver to its users. Microsoft completely threw that out of the window when it stopped making exclusives for its Xbox console and allowed the games to come out to PC. Exclusives are the key differentiator between the competing machines aside from things like the power within these machines. The PlayStation 4 is home to some of the most critically acclaimed games and there are no signs of it slowing down. Take a look at the list below:
- Uncharted 4
- Horizon: Zero Dawn
- Nier: Automota
Plus it benefits from other more niche games that have received great critical reception such as:
- Yakuza 0
- The Last Guardian
- Gravity Rush 2
Then take a gander of the greatness of the titles that are to come:
- Shenmue 3
- Final Fantasy 7 Remake
- Detroit: Become Human
- God of War
- The Last of Us 2
- Days Gone
Looking at the above, we are looking at PlayStation 2 levels of domination here whereby you really need to get a PS4 console otherwise you’re missing out on the best this generation of gaming has to offer.
Help Me Cortana
Like Cortana in Halo 5: Guardians went AWOL, so did the exclusives and proposition of the Xbox One, the closest competitor to the PlayStation 4. Whilst the Xbox has done well to come back from its critical condition post launch, where it showed everyone a masterclass tutorial in committing sepuku albeit without the ‘honour’ that traditionally accompanies the act, it is being completely outclassed by its competition and just observing its attempts at fighting back is like watching a game of chess between Stephen Hawking and Kanye West, with the ever so chatty Mr. West representing team Xbox with all its loud proclamations being increasing nonsensical and less grounded in reality as the days go by.
What does the Xbox have other than the most powerful console on Earth but without any games?
In fact, the struggles of the Xbox and desperation with which its trying to level the playing field speaks volumes of just how decisively PlayStation has been eclipsing all of its so-called competitors. Microsoft is banking so hard on its new powerhouse console, code-named Scorpio, that it appears to have forgotten that the console will actually need games to make it a worthwhile purchase with the most-like hefty price that this ‘premium’ console will fetch. Lets take a look at what 2017 has in store for Xbox:
- Halo Wars 2
- Crackdown 3 (no release date)
- Sea of Thieves (no release date)
- State of Decay 2 (no release date)
- Cuphead (no release date)
2017- The Pivotal Year
Pretty woeful isn’t it? If Ilyas and I were to have a debate, and if I was foolish enough to take the unenviable task of championing Xbox in this instance, I would be the one ending up stabbing myself (hopefully with some honour). However, Stockholm Syndrome hasn’t actually set in yet and I can clearly see a winner when I see one and Xbox isn’t it.
The PlayStation 4 is leading the way and I strongly compel you to jump in
I truly believe 2017 is going to be the pivotal year for this generation of games. The fact that PlayStation 4 has so strongly and decisively hit its stride in this year will only further cement its already pre-determined victory. Heck even Nintendo has its own claim to 2017 with the release of the Nintendo Switch and the absolutely incredible Zelda: Breath of the Wild (reviews for the console and game will be coming soon) sitting at a mighty metacritic score of 98 in its hands along with Super Mario Odyssey on its way. What does the Xbox have other than the most powerful console on Earth but without any games anyone actually cares about? You cannot afford to be MIA in 2017 if you are in the console race and that’s precisely what Xbox appears to be. E3 will reveal whether or not it drowns or comes up gasping for air.
The Future is PlayStation
Make no mistake; PlayStation needs competition. Just look at PlayStation’s own self-flagellation during the PS3 days when it rode high on arrogance and over-confidence much to the detriment of itself and its fans. It was quickly put in its place by the Xbox just like Xbox has been bitch-slapped by the PlayStation this generation. Sony’s financial struggles in other markets has resulted in its PlayStation brand being its most valuable and crucial one, almost holding the company afloat. Therefore, don’t expect Sony to rest on its laurels because the pressure isn’t so much coming from the competition but within itself. Expect quality to follow through even if its competition doesn’t step up to the plate.
we are looking at PlayStation 2 levels of domination here
If you are a gamer who is not a fan of the PlayStation you really need to reconsider otherwise. Unless you have very specific tastes that render the myriad of different quality titles available on the PlayStation somehow redundant to you, you are missing out. The PlayStation 4 is leading the way and I strongly compel you to jump in if you haven’t already done so.