PS3 vs Xbox 360: A Comparison
The Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 are the premier video gaming consoles of this generation. Playstation 3 is a product of Sony and Xbox 360 is a product of Microsoft. The two corporate juggernauts created two fine pieces of technology in their respective systems and both have been very successful since their release back in 2005 (360) and 2006 (PS3). Both offer unique experiences and bring innovation to this generation of gaming. Both have strengths and weaknesses, victories and failures. Although these systems boast gorgeous graphics, expansive game libraries and large fan followings, the pair definitely has their differences, which I will gladly explain and break down. Is there really a clear winner in this on going, ever-raging video gaming war?
First of all, the most important thing about these consoles is their game libraries. Both consoles have a wide array of games to choose from but they also have first party exclusives. The Playstation 3 has a number of outstanding first party titles. The most prominent is arguably the “Uncharted” series. There are three games thus far that make up the series, which are Drake’s Fortune, Among Thieves and Drake’s Deception. All three games were met with wide critical acclaim and praise. The series also has a huge fan following. The series is known for it’s immersive story line, strong game play and cinematic-like presentation. The Playstation 3 also is home to God of War 3, the third installment in a series Playstation fans have come to know and love. Gran Turismo 5, possibly the deepest and most complex racing game ever made is exclusive to Sony’s console. The Gran Turismo series has cemented itself as the premier racing simulator on consoles today. The Playstation 3 is also home to many other exclusives, such as Heavy Rain, a psychological thriller, Journey, a short but sweet digital exclusive, Metal Gear Solid 4, a brilliant tactical shooter, and the Ratchet and Clank series. As strong as the Playstation 3’s exclusive library is, the Xbox 360 has it’s fair share of winners. Those games are Alan Wake, an engaging psychological thriller, Tales of Vesperia, a complex RPG, Forza, a refined driving simulator, and of course, the well-known Halo series. As far as non-exclusives go, games like Resident Evil 5, the Assassin’s Creed series, and the Grand Theft Auto series are available for both systems and perform virtually the same. All of these titles and series were also met with critical praise, so both consoles have had their fair share of stellar titles, so when compared, they both win.
Graphics and performance are extremely important in home consoles. Both the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 have stunning graphics, while most of the games are capable of running in full 1080p HD. If you want to get technical, the downright best looking game on a console has to be Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, which is a Playstation 3 exclusive. No game on the Xbox 360 can quite match it as far as raw visuals, although games like Gears of War come pretty close. Overall, the two systems have similar specifications and can both dish out some pretty sick graphics, but a lot of it depends on the game, it’s developer and the quality of it’s production.
Connectivity and features is a topic that must be addressed when talking about the two premier home consoles. Both the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 have HDMI inputs, Wi-Fi, Ethernet ports and both utilize wireless controllers. They are evenly stacked on the connectivity level, but as far as features go, it’s a whole different story. The Xbox 360 is capable of playing DVD’s and standard CD’s. On the other hand, the Playstation 3 has a built-in Blu-Ray disc drive, which is an enormous plus for most consumers, due to the significantly higher video quality produced by Blu-Ray discs. That alone can be a deal breaker and really gives the Playstation 3 an advantage. The game discs are also produced as Blu-Rays, but this doesn’t change a whole lot on the gaming side, it just offers more memory. For example, some Xbox 360 games have two or even three discs, where as the same exact game for PS3 only has one, due to it’s Blu-Ray utilization. Both consoles have plenty of options as far as memory goes. Sony offers 120GB, 160GB, 250GB and 320GB iterations of the PS3. Microsoft, on the other hand offers 4GB, 60GB and 250GB Xbox 360 models. Let’s not forget about motion controls, as Xbox 360 offers the “Kinect” and PS3 offers it’s “Move”. Both motion control counterparts work well, but have proved to be second to the motion control king, the Nintendo Wii.
Online play is huge these days, and both consoles deliver big in this category. The Xbox Live experience on the 360 is the best there is, with a ton of content and features. The downside is that it’s pricey. Xbox Live costs $20 for 3 months or $50 for 12 months. On the other hand, the PS3’s online counterpart is absolutely free of charge, yet it lacks the depth and innovation of the Xbox Live experience. Both systems share a large following as far as the online community goes and both operate nicely, although Playstation Network’s recent hack fest hasn’t helped it’s case much. Sony has since made it’s online community safer for users.
Reliability is one area the Xbox 360 has failed miserably at up until the release of it’s new “slim” models. For years, Xbox 360 owners were forced to replace their system, due to what is widely known as the “Red Ring of Death”, which displayed itself as three red lights, indicating the system was “dead”. The “slim” models have fixed the issue and are the most reliable of all the models. On the other hand, the Playstation 3 has always been reliable and has stood the test of time. The slim line version of the PS3, released a few years ago, only enhanced reliability and performance, while at the same time, saving energy.
Overall, both the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 share a lot of the same features such as similar controls, identical connectivity options and comparable performance. On the flip side, the PS3 has the desirable Blu-Ray drive, yet the Xbox 360 has the more fleshed-out online experience. Sony and Microsoft continue to dominate the home gaming experience, with powerful graphics, huge fan followings, innovative technology and stellar exclusives. It would be hard to choose a winner in this ongoing console war.