RPS Asks: What Are Your Plans For The New Consoles?

By John Walker on November 11th, 2013 at 11:00 am.

This November is a very big month in gaming. It’s traditionally the biggest month in the gaming calendar, but this one knocks the others into a hat so cocked it’s balancing on its brim. It sees the release of both the Xbox One, and the PS4. That’s enormous – previous console releases have been staggered, the PS2 appearing a year and a half before the Xbox, the Xbox 360 beating the PS3 to the shelves by a full year. That was all seven long years ago, and this time the battle is head to head, just a week separating the two black boxes’ arrival into the world. With them comes a slew of launch titles, some exclusive, some cross-platform, and what both Microsoft and Sony must be hoping will be their biggest Christmas ever. So where does that leave you, the fine looking PC gamer?

While we at RPS certainly believe the PC to be by far the best way to experience games, the perception that we’re in some way anti-console is entirely imaginary. We all own them, we all play games on them. Until about a month ago, when my PS3 coughed its last and bleeped its three deathly bleeps, I had both the current gen consoles plugged into my telly. And indeed have a cupboard full of their ancestors, going back to the Megadrive. No console can match the PC for its extraordinary freedoms, the instant and open access to a range of games so vast as to dwarf the consoles combined, and the intricacy and complexity available to its games. But that doesn’t mean we don’t enjoy sitting back in a comfy armchair and waggling a controller when the game is right.

And we know the same is true for very many of you. So we’re very interested to learn how readers plan to approach this month to end all gaming months.

Did you pre-order them both six months ago, and are now desperately wishing you could be one of those who gets an accidentally shipped early delivery? (Can we just take a moment to acknowledge Microsoft’s gall at having an unboxing video removed from YouTube because of “copyright violation”.) Or are you waiting to see how they go down, undecided on which to pick until a consensus is formed? Maybe you’ll wait a year for the inevitable revised versions, and pick up the old one at a significant discount? Or do you have absolutely no intention of picking up either?

Does the leap forward in tech concern you over your current PC build? It’s been an odd five or so years, with the consoles delaying their replacements a lot longer than was expected, leading to a significant drop in the progress of fidelity. When the big-budget, cross-platform games were coming out on eight-year-old hardware, they were far less likely to make demands of the PC, and so the biennial update has rather faded away. But what about now? As developers learn the new consoles, they’ll start pushing the tech farther and farther, and a middling PC might not keep up much longer.

Of course, it’s entirely possible that you’re placing your bets with the Steam Box, recognising that your armchair experiences needn’t rely on a plastic box that also wants to be your DVR, Hi-Fi system and teasmaid. Or do you wish the whole thing would just go away so you can get on with playing your elaborate RTS across three monitors and seven keyboards?

Let us know below.

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246 Comments »

Top comments

  1. Haplo says:

    I tried to build a house in a forested rural area once, but I was informed by the local council that it simply wasn’t backwoods compatible. :(

  1. rfa says:

    GT6 is on PS3… & will build a SteaMachine IF XBMC is installable. Otherwise will build an HTPC & dual boot SteamOS.

  2. lowprices says:

    Ignoring for the moment. Got a PS3, a Vita, and a PC, each with its own backlog of games. None of the current next-gen lineup looks interesting really. If enough interesting games come out I’ll probably get a PS4, but only when the inevitable PS4 slim comes out.

    EDIT: I’m more likely to get a 3DS before I get a console. The only games which have caught my attention recently are either indie games (which I can play on PC or Vita), or handheld games.

  3. Yargh says:

    I’ve been eyeing up the PS4 for a potential holiday gift, howver not one of the launch titles inspires me at all.

  4. Low Life says:

    I’m probably not going to get either, and if I do end up getting one it will be the PS4. I’ve played my Xbox360 so little that buying another console feels like a waste at this point.

    And I need to buy a Wii U for Bayonetta 2.

  5. h_ashman says:

    I’ll probably just spend the price of console on a new graphics card.
    I might get a PS4 down the line when Gran Turismo comes out for it, and even then it’ll be the secondary console to my PC anyway.
    Also a PS4 suits that role better as I won’t need to pay for PS+ unless I want to play the games online. Netflix / iPlayer / LoveFilm etc. is free-to-use on the PS4, so that and a bit of GT & local Fifa will do me fine.

    The xbox one just doesn’t seem to be set up for the secondary console role, which is probably the silliest move for me, either you use it as a primary console or you just waste your money paying for Live just to use the internet with it.

    • SuicideKing says:

      Yeah a $400-$500 graphics card could handle >1080p with ease…

  6. Tusque D'Ivoire says:

    I grew up without consoles, apart from evenings at a schoolmate’s house with Super Smash Bros and MarioCart64 or sweet summer months visiting a friend playing pokemon and ocarina of time. And I never felt like I missed anything, because at the same time the PC always felt like the superior platform to me, even though the industry understandably focused on the inferior but seemingly more lucrative consoles.

    With the new consoles all I’m expecting are some disappointing console exclusives, more lobbyist headlines about consoles being the bigger, better market and maybe one or two actually new things spilling over to the pcs from consoleland.

    Oh and maybe I’ll upgrade my pc with a new graphics card, but the only game I ever really wanted but couldn’t run in a playable way was the witcher 2, so I’ll probably just finally upgrade it with that SSD as I’ve been planning.

  7. Bull0 says:

    Preordered the PS4, had to cancel it because I remembered I can’t responsibly spaff £400 odd right now, revised plan is to hopefully pick one up around easter of next year. The Xbone with it’s focus on everything except games and mandatory living room camera doesn’t really appeal to me, and the 360 was my favourite the last time around so I’m quite disappointed it’s turned out this way.

    Last time, I got the 360 as soon as possible and the PS3 a couple of years post launch – I imagine I’ll basically do the reverse this time.

    Good to see you guys address this, so thanks for posting – I agree that PC is the best possible way to enjoy games, but don’t agree with the stigmatising of console gamers that sometimes happens!

  8. Solidstate89 says:

    I’m going to wait and see if they release a USB connected version of the Xbox One controller (like the 360 controller before it) and wait to read reviews about whether it will be worth picking up as a replacement for my 360 controller.

    So far I quite like it, I’m just worried about the backwards compatibility with older titles. I can’t think of a major reason why it wouldn’t work, given the identical layout, but you never know with new peripherals.

  9. mattevansc3 says:

    Not getting anything at launch, still got too many games for my 360 and PC that i haven’t played yet.

    In a year or two I’ll probably pick up an XboxOne. I’m not a graphics whore, I’m still running a 5770 as my GPU, and the PS4 seems to offer nothing more than a graphics update to the PS3. The extra features of the XboxOne, especially being able to run my Skybox through the console are more aligned with my usage than prettier graphics

  10. Kefren says:

    I had an Xbox, and hardly played on it, I just got bored of the games too quickly. I got an Xbox 360 just for Rock Band (and games like that) which I play with my friends during some get togethers. Nothing else tempts me. I tried a few horror games that weren’t available on PC but they weren’t as immersive on console, and I’ve not played anything on it except Rock Band games for about two years now. I definitely don’t want a PS4 or Xbone. My setup is an Xbox connected to hi-fi and projector in the living room. I suppose that when this Xbox dies I’ll just go back to using my laptop connected to them for films etc (I don’t have a TV), and maybe some simple sofa multiplayer games like Peggle.

  11. Jimbo says:

    Probably both eventually, but not until there’s something I want to play on them that I can’t get on PC.

    The launch lineups are particularly weak, even by launch lineup standards, which is surprising considering the consoles are going head to head right from the start. One ‘killer app’ (ugh) would make a huge difference, but there is nary a one to be found.

    Best part about all of this is that the ball and chain holding PC back for so long finally gets thrown forward again.

  12. Guvornator says:

    I have to say, I’ve greeted this console generation with total and utter indifference. Which is sort of a first – although I’m not really much of a console gamer (I’ve only owned a wii and a game cube, both second-hand and both pretty late in the day), I’ve always been interested.

    But it’s just more of the same old same old, and there seems to be an increasingly small graphics gap between generations. I suspect this is partly why they’re pimping the multimedia functions so much.

  13. takfar says:

    hm. I have a Wii U. I got it to play Nintendo games, and that’s what I use it for.

    As for the xbone and the PS4…

    I’ve played one “next-gen” game already: battlefield 4. My new PC can play it very solidly at 45 to 60 fps, all bells and whistles activated. If that’s the baseline performance required for the next 6-8 years, I’m at once happy at not needing a substantial upgrade anytime soon but also a little bit miffed that, tech-wise, we will be stuck at the current point for that long.

    Well, I’ll be eagerly waiting on the super HD Oculus Rift, anyway.

    • Bull0 says:

      These comparisons can be a bit misleading as generally it takes a while for developers to start really getting the most out of the consoles – when you compare launch games to the games released near the end of the console’s life cycle they’re very, very different.

      That said, this is Dice we’re talking about here, who strike me as more tech than your average.

      • Geebs says:

        The last console generation had more idiosyncratic hardware though. I find it harder to believe that there’s vast untapped potential in a cheap x64 all-in-one.

        Also bear in mind that the major way in which performance on the current generation of consoles improved during this cycle was ever-cheaper FSAA on top of an ever-diminishing framebuffer size and they were still sub-30fps most of the time

        • Bull0 says:

          All true, I just don’t think we should rush to judge the potential of the consoles on what a multi-platform game can achieve at launch

      • takfar says:

        Oh, I certainly expect console games to advance, tech-wise, during this generation. But again, this game that the XBone plays at 720p with barely any adeded detail, I can already play at 1080p with every single option maxed, and the best AA available. Any optimization that console devs can still get out of that will take a long time, probably not be that huge (as Geebs said, they *are* cheap x64 machines) and will probably translate into games that easily run on contemporary PCs. Add to that the fact that console generations are getting longer and longer… I think average PC players are pretty safe hardware-wise.

        Maybe six to eight years from now, by the end of this console run, we’ll have onboard videocards running concurrent-gen console games decently… who knows?

  14. Astalnar says:

    My plan is to continue playing on PC, and finally buy new one by the end of next year. This pretty much sums it up.

  15. Shadowcat says:

    My plans for each of the new consoles will come into play towards the end of its lifespan.

    At that time I will look to see if it ever achieved a critical mass of exclusive games which I have a strong desire to play. If so, and the hardware has become sufficiently cheap, I shall buy one along with those games of interest.

    This event has not yet occurred for their predecessors. Thus far I have a PS2.

  16. Mercykiller101 says:

    I think I’ll get one of those cheap Korean IPS 27″ QHD monitors and a solid Gamepad and just stick with my PC.

    • Williz says:

      The Xeox wireless gamepad is hands down the best pad I’ve used. They’re around £30 I think. Best feature is that it has a toggle switch so you can use it either as a 360 Pad (Windows actually detects it as a 360 pad) or use it as Direct Input. They have built in batteries that charge via Mini USB. I’ve found that the home button on them opens Steam in Big picture mode when pressed which is pretty handy.

  17. frightlever says:

    The new consoles mean I’ll probably be picking up a bunch of PS3 and 360 exclusives for cheap.

  18. Nevard says:

    I’m going to buy a WiiU eventually, as it’s the only one that seems like it can deliver an experience different to my PC and the significant other has expressed interest. Not soon though.

  19. onecardlarry says:

    I’m getting a PS4 to replace a recently expired Wii as the family box under the PC. Apart from performance and price differentials, the PlayStation games seem to be a better complement for the PC. I was stoked for the Steam Machines but am now hoping to get in on the SteamOS streaming beta to see if my aging XBMC box can hack it.

  20. kael13 says:

    Tempted by the PlayStation 4, due to all the annoyingly rather excellent platform exclusives Sony seems to wrangle. We’ll see though, as buying an entire console for a couple of great games per generation seems like a waste. I do plan to upgrade my PC next year however, as my first gen i7, second generation SSD and 6GB of RAM probably won’t cut it for much longer. I was gutted that prices dropped on the GTX 780 recently, but it really is an excellent GPU.

  21. Eight Rooks says:

    For me? On the one hand, PCs have nothing that comes close to the pillars of console gaming – no arcade racer the equal of Wipeout HD/Fury, no third-person adventure that matches The Last of Us or ICO/Shadow of the Colossus, no RPG that has the spirit of adventure, the production values and the story-telling abilities of the few good JRPGs (Final Fantasy XII, Skies of Arcadia, Tactics Ogre et al), and on, and on. Indies, for the most part, don’t remotely measure up, to my mind.

    On the other hand, despite all that – I’m poor, I can’t really afford either one of the new machines, more and more of the big franchises are going cross-platform and I’ve managed enough of an upgrade for now I can get Crysis 3 playable when it’s maxed out (if at relatively low-res). And I’ve not seen anything announced for either console that’s an absolute must-have, plus a couple of the more interesting titles are coming to PC in the end anyway. Plus – and here’s where any PC wins out – I have come to really, really like having a digital-only library. It’s still just not feasible on consoles.

    If I went for either, for what little it’s worth, it’d be a PS4. Microsoft’s push towards a multi-purpose entertainment-box just just doesn’t do it for me, and Sony’s philosophy plus their launch/first-year catalogue looks far more appealing. But as it stands, I’m out of this console hardware generation for the foreseeable future – I’m sure my Steam, iOS and Android libraries will keep me going.

  22. Fenix says:

    The only consoles I ever purchase are Nintendo handhelds, so I have no plans for november. I sold my PC while moving anyway so even if I wanted to purchase something, it’d be a PC.

  23. Grape Flavor says:

    As a self-professed Nintendo loyalist, I fully intend to get a Wii U as soon as it’s turned the corner and gotten a few more good games. Sad to see that the system got not even a cursory mention in the article.

    As for the others, well, I’ve never owned a consolething not made by Nintendo and I have no immediate plans to change that. Not resolutely opposed to the idea by any means though, so we shall see.

  24. Ham Solo says:

    I will ignore them and just be happy that games released on consoles and the PC together will look a bit better from now on until in 2 years or so, because the older generations hardware is toast right now.

  25. povu says:

    I’ll pick up an XB1 controller as soon as the PC drivers are available. That’s about it.

    • waaaaaaaals says:

      That thing which this chap said right here.

      Nothing interests me about the consoles, it’s all about the pads.

  26. Caiman says:

    Zero interest right now. They are both mid-range PCs that have no interesting games on them. If the last bit changes I might reconsider over the next year or two, but right now the only reason to buy either would be bragging rights / new shiny.

  27. Corporate Dog says:

    I’ll probably eventually buy ONE of the consoles, but as with the last few generations, it’ll be after they come down in price, and only once I have a sense of what their libraries look like. That’ll be another year or two at least, especially since I haven’t subscribed to the hype machine this time around.

    I’m honestly MORE excited about Steam’s Big Picture/Steam OS. Before I knew how the latter was going to work, I picked up the components for a mid-range box that was going to be hooked up directly to my TV. Now I’m thinking about using THAT box as the streaming source, and throwing together something a touch lighter (using parts I already have) for the Linux “console”.

  28. nopol10 says:

    Paper weight

  29. Ninja Dodo says:

    I’ll wait till they release The Last Guardian.

  30. MobileAssaultDuck says:

    My girlfriend does the whole console thing and she’s leaning toward PS4.

    I bought RDR for her 360 since it never came out on PC, but gaming on a couch with no AA and a controller ended my RDR experience after about an hour.

    My natural gaming stance is hunched with my hand in a WASD claw. Anything else feels uncomfortable at this point.

    I’m not into sports games, or Japanese games, so consoles don’t really have anything for me.

  31. Jonfon says:

    I’ll get one eventually, but all the PS3 has done in the last 12 months or so is play Netflix and Journey. So I’m in no hurry at all really. Plus I just bought a Raspberry Pi so I’ll just pretend that’s my new PS4

  32. Baltech says:

    I started life as a console gamer but the PC and consoles have lived in harmony in my household for the past 15 years. I usually had three types of gaming device to cover all my bases and get most of the possible, very distinct experiences: Nintendo, PC and one of the mainstream consoles. But this generation marks a very distinct transition for me. It’s the first time I have not bought a Nintendo console on day one. I still own neither a 3DS nor a WiiU. As for the XBone and the PS4: They seem so boring, safe and, in the long run, expensive. None of the exclusive titles tickle my fancy.

    So, from 2013 on, PC is where it’s at. Sure, the initial investment was higher than a console, but the machin I built is a powerhose, has plenty room to expand, has an enormous library of AAA and Indie games, old and new, most of them rather cheap rather soon after release, is connected to my big screen TV and can thus be played like a console…

    Shure a reasonably powerful PC might cost you at least twice as much as the new consoles but in the long run, it’s oooooh so worth it. Valve chose well to make noises about the SteamBox and BigPicture right now.

    Maybe I’ll get a PS4 in a couple of years, for some exclusives that don’t make their way to PC but due to now similar architecture and economics of scale, I suspect that such games will become more and more rare in the upcoming years.

    So, if you are a gamer that wants the absolute most out of their hobby, you have no choice but to go PC this time around.

  33. Tony M says:

    I’ll stick with my PC for now. Console games are so expensive and the launch lineup contains no “must have” titles. I’ll buy one down the road when a console releases a game I can’t live without.

    I get the feeling midrange PCs are going to overtake the consoles much faster this generation than in the previous.

  34. Mimiloki says:

    PC

  35. bstard says:

    Do these things have proper controls like a mouse or kb? Do they have interesting titles like TDs, or shooters, or CK2? Do they give you control over what you do like a PC? Does it give you the selection of software like vpns or ventrilo or running a server like win32 has? Do they run a VMware session with linux? Looks to me consoles are balls, for the plebs who cant be bothered to figure out anything except the power-on button.

  36. derbefrier says:

    I will probably end up with one of them at some point. Gonna wait a bit and make sure noi red rings or other issues arise before I run out and buy one. I also need some ofther stuff for my PC like a new video card and I was eyballing some trackIR really hard to. Hmmmm black friday is right around the corner.

  37. Tom Walker says:

    I haven’t done any console gaming since the Gamecube, and don’t intend to start again any time soon. It’s the OSes. There’s just too much crap getting between powering on and playing a game these days. If I’m going to have to install games and run updates, I might as well have the extra flexibility of a full PC.

    And yeah, the release of the new consoles is going to force me into a pretty expensive upgrade. Right now I’m still using a 2nd-gen i3 with an nVidia GT440. You may laugh, but that runs Bioshock Infinite on ‘high’ with no noticeable slowdown.

    All of a sudden, it’s going to become very very out-of-date.

  38. Seafort says:

    Will be waiting a year or 2 to get any new console like I normally do. My PC upgrade comes first so that’ll be at some point next year :)

    I’ll never get an Xbox as I don’t trust MS with anything to do with gaming. It’s been Sony since the PS1 to compliment my gaming PC.

  39. melnificent says:

    My PS3 is a glorified Netflix and bluray player. I’ve no interest at the minute. Infamous Second Son is tempting though I’ll wait for the reviews

  40. tigershuffle says:

    trying and succeeding in ignoring them, despite the best efforts of my 11yr old boy.

    Got original modded xbox in kids play room with xbmc on it
    the boys 360 in living room has Halo, BF3 and Minecraft for the boy …..and my parents Sky tv sub on it for me

    Thats all i need consoles for and id rather spend my money keeping my pc 3yrs behind everyone else :)

  41. Phinor says:

    I have both PS3/X360 but mostly a PC gamer. I see no reason to buy either of the new consoles until there’s enough interesting exclusive (non-PC) content and that might take anywhere between a year (X360) and 7 years (PS3).

    On the other hand simply buying exclusivity rights to games doesn’t usually help. If Titanfall (my most anticipated game right now) was Xbox exclusive, it wouldn’t be anywhere on my waiting list because I’d never play a game like that with a gamepad.

    Couple of months ago Microsoft was two steps away from me considering a next-gen purchase. Having bought Forza 2&3&4&Horizon, Forza 5 is one of those exclusive games I might be interested in but as it is right now, the game lacks content (14 tracks?!) and the price of the whole package is way above what I’m considering paying. Xbone 550 euros (Finnish price, although our release is delayed to 2014 anyway), wheel 450 euros, Forza 5 60 euros, season pass 50 euros. Even if I dropped the season pass, the total price would be over 1000 euros. Microsoft effectively doubled the entry price (for me) of Xbone by dropping support of current wheels and their reasoning for doing that wasn’t credible at all. No thanks. luckily there’s multiple PC racing games nearing completion.

    So as of right now, I don’t see any reasons to buy either new console. They need more content (games), plain and simple. I however am excited about the new consoles and I will be watching every second of content Giant Bomb delivers.

  42. apa says:

    I have a PS3 already and the AAA games on that look good enough for me. I’ll most probably skip the whole next gen console thing and when a steambox can do movies, hifi and everything else, I’ll buy one to put under the TV.

    edit: and anyway, I read more about games than I play them. lol@me.

  43. PlaneShift says:

    I am going to ignore both, not because I hate consoles, but because games for them are ridiculously overpriced here in Brazil.

  44. Mr Wonderstuff says:

    I’m a gamer and have all three major platforms – I want to experience all that is on offer with first-party exclusives and will get both consoles but not just yet – the launch lineup isn’t setting my world alight. My 3 year old PC (GTX 570) still plays many a game well enough – AC Black Flag is my next purchase for said platform. Indeed, it is the Oculus Rift which really has me thinking that next gen isn’t about the PS4 or XBox One but this little bit of kit.

  45. Cleave says:

    Had an X1 on preorder since June. I’ll be picking up Dead Rising, Ryse and Battlefield (because all my mates play on console) on launch.

    I image I’ll still do the majority of my gaming on PC. I owned a 360 since launch but haven’t really used in the last few years as PC games pulled ahead. I’m only really buying it as my friends all play on Xbox but I’m looking forward to the exclusives. I’ll probably end up with a PS4 eventually although after I get a Wii U I imagine.

  46. Heliocentric says:

    When Nintendo brings out an advance wars I’ll buy the box I need to play it.

    That’s about it.

  47. PopeRatzo says:

    I won’t have them. I’ve never enjoyed gaming in the living room like some sort of teenager. I have a fine handbuilt gaming rig and a 27″ monitor and play computer games in my home office like a gentleman. Consoles are beneath me.

    Plus, my wife won’t let me buy one.

  48. serioussgtstu says:

    I’ve been making eyes at a beautiful GTX 660 on Amazon for a few weeks now, so I think I’ll upgrade to that before the end of the year so that I can play the Misery mod for Stalker at a reasonable frame rate. I’m not really bothered with the new consoles, so my plan is to wait a year or so and pick up a PS3 slim once it’s hit rock bottom price so that I can play Demon’s Souls and Ni No Kuni. I might also buy RDR for a third time.

    Otherwise I’ll continue my routine of playing ten year old games that I picked up for pennies on the PC.

  49. Azdeus says:

    I’ve not owned a console since the NES, with the original three game cartridge, and I’ve never missed them. I had a twinge when Red Dead Redemption was released, but that’s it.

    I see nothing in the new generation consoles that is interesting to me, I don’t need their features or whatever, and I don’t want to pay yet another retarded extra fee to use my internet connection with it. I’m somewhat interested in the racing games, but the total price for a decent experience as someone said above is so high that it’s cheaper to buy a REAL car and go do some Folkrace.

    Or, I could use that money on PC parts and not on overpriced games and services.
    Not on Steam though, I’d rather quit gaming than kowtow to an online DRM.

  50. LordMidas says:

    I’ve got my Xbox One on pre-order and can’t wait to get on and play BF4. The main reason for upgrading my 360 is due to my mates not being able to upgrade to a snazzy PC.

    I have a decent gaming rig but have no qualms to sitting on the sofa, with the greatest controller, and shooting/driving/adventuring up a storm. Now and again I’ll get my PC and play the latest Steam Sale.

    I ain’t a PC snob, I love ‘em both.