Thursday, April 18, 2013

How the PlayStation 3 Beat Out the Xbox 360 and Won Over Our Hearts

Now, we know what you're thinking. 1) Sales between the PS3 and 360 are very close, so we cannot say with a straight face that the PS3 beat out the 360. That's not what we mean when we say Sony's system beat out Microsoft's, and 2) Saying a gaming system won over our hearts is incredibly lame and something a fan-thing would say. We are most certainly not fan-things at SuperPhillip Central, but saying "won over our hearts" was the briefest way to put that the PlayStation 3 was a console we used to not care about to one that we now cannot get enough of. To go back to point #1, what do we mean then when we say that the PlayStation 3 "beat out the Xbox 360"? That's an excellent condition, so let us elaborate.

The PlayStation 3 started off with plenty of ground needed to catch up with its competitors, the Wii and the Xbox 360. The infamous "Five hundred and ninety-nine dollars" is a phrase that will live on in the echoes of time. Sales were sluggish, games were few and far in-between, and PlayStation fans kept playing the "Wait for *insert game here* for sales to improve." Pretty much what the Wii U and Vita are experiencing now. However, things finally improved. More games came out from Sony and third-parties, the price was lowered, and new features came to the PlayStation 3 seemingly every month.

A day that will live in infamy for Sony fans.
Let's compare the first-party output of both Sony and Microsoft. This generation alone Sony has published a staggering amount of new IPs, far more than their competition. That's absolutely delightful to see in an industry where sequels and stagnation are commonplace. We've seen epic and/or entertaining new franchises like Uncharted, inFamous, Resistance, Heavenly Sword, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, ModNation Racers, and our personal favorite, LittleBigPlanet. However, Sony also brought back a lot of their legacy franchises such as God of War, Gran Turismo, Ratchet & Clank, Sly Cooper, Killzone, and Wipeout, to name a handful. These games blow away what Microsoft offers, and we're not talking sales. We're talking about how Sony has a wider and broader range of titles in varying genres than Microsoft, who, for a while now, has primarily stuck to shooters, Kinect games, and racers. The point here is that Sony has really stepped up their first-party development with the PlayStation 3, offering familiar faces and franchises and a lot of innovative and intriguing new ones.

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
Then there's the excellent third-party support, something that Sony platforms have always had. Publishers like EA, Activision, Ubisoft, Bethesda, Capcom, Konami, Square Enix, Sega, Namco Bandai, THQ (R.I.P.), and Take Two have delivered fantastic titles for the PS3, some being exclusives, such as Metal Gear Solid 4, Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, and Valkyria Chronicles. Even games that weren't exclusives were enjoyable to play like Batman: Arkham City, Saints Row: The Third, Sonic Generations, Mirror's Edge, BioShock Infinite, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, Street Fighter IV, Marvel VS. Capcom 3, Dark Souls, Borderlands 2, and many more.

Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
We also enjoy PlayStation 3 more than the Xbox 360 for the reason regarding online. The 360 obviously has a better online service than the PS3, but at the same time you have to pay to play online and use various services such as YouTube (seriously) if you want to take your 360 online. With the PS3 you have free online, and you have enough features that make online play entertaining and engaging. We hope that the PlayStation 4 will remain free for online gaming, but after seeing Microsoft's success, Sony might decide against that.

Regardless, we're seeing an awesome premium program from Sony with PlayStation Plus. This not only grants subscribers with early access to game betas and demos, but every month it also delivers free games on a consistent basis. We're not just talking PSN games or Minis, either. No, we mean full games like Uncharted: Golden Abyss (Vita), LittleBigPlanet 2 (PS3), and Mega Man X: Maverick Hunter (PSP). PS+ is an awesome contribution to gaming, and we're excited to see where it goes with the PlayStation 4 and future PlayStation products.

It is for these reasons why we at SuperPhillip Central figure that the PlayStation 3 was our favorite high-definition console this past generation, and the one which turned our opinion of the system around 180 degrees. From the excellence that is Sony's first-party output to PlayStation Plus, Sony has really pulled a miraculous comeback with the PlayStation 3. With the PS4 coming down the pipeline, the future for Sony looks bright in the home console market.

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