Console dilemma 2014
I'm going to rant about the difficulty of selecting a console at this particular time in the cycle (Post Launch) and what ultimately led to my decision.
First off let's toss out the fan boy logic as in this day and age I find it equally ignorant to be a pure Microsoft or pure Sony advocate as much as a pure Democrat or pure Republican. Anyone who makes up their mind before objectively discussing an issue is either a sheep or in denial.
Both companies in my not so humble opinion have won a gen. While I love the giant paperweight that is the original X-Box console it had absolutely no chance against the Playstation 2 overall. With it's monstrous game library and constant version upgrades by Sony it may go down in history as the most dominant console of all time compared to it's peers. The PS3 vs 360 debate is a bit closer but ultimately the 360 had better exclusives (For most of the gen), better online support and of course a year head start. It secured Microsoft as a legitimate threat and relegated Nintendo to bronze status.
So we both know both companies can bring it and their strengths and weaknesses that make their consoles unique. So given enough time after the "New Console" smell wears off and the deficiencies are public knowledge (and more importantly acknowledged) it should be easy to pick one right? WRONG! Because picking a console has never been purely about hardware performance. It has to appeal to your individual tastes and allow you to continue all those bromances you have cultivated after years of gaming.
After properly test driving both consoles via mooching off friends an relatives. Stealing away their precious game time to play such titles as Ryse or Killzone. Each intent on showcasing what makes their home console great (Or not so great). I was able to put it all together and make a informed decision. I will now attempt to break down my thought process.
The first thing I did was research sales. Unsurprisingly the PS4 was well ahead but ultimately who gives a shit? It's no secret Microsoft couldn't sell bottled water to six Japanese dudes lost in the Sahara. Japan still prefers Sony. (and tentacle porn) It's also irrelevant at this particular juncture since the PS3 caught up to 360 sales at the end of the cycle despite a year lead. Did that mean much in the end? Not really.
Second I took a look at the hardware. Here is where Sony cleans up. I could waste another thread explaining the tech but in short the PS4 is a more powerful system. The PS3 had this advantage as well but often did not capitalize on it. So it's not a deal breaker but it's worth noting.
The Xbox one has also had some very embarrassing problems out of the gate. One such issue (Which is apparent even in Titanfall) is the games run natively on 720P. The one compensates by up scaling the graphics which creates contrast inconsistencies and in pre-patch cases severe sharpening problems (Jagged edges etc.) Meanwhile the PS4's gorgeous 1080P is smoother then Scarlet Johanssons back side. The games make the system so I believe this will balance out in time but right now the one is simply handicapped and for $100 more it can't afford to be.
Third let's look at the service. Sony has finally caught up folks! Making this a toss up based on personal preference. Personally I like that Playstation plus is offering up free games for PS4 while as of right now Microsoft is content with releasing games from the bargain bin. That said I still prefer Xbox Live but it's no longer by a large margin. Both have pro's and cons so I'll leave it at that for now.
Fourth and most important is the games. We are not dealing with strictly launch titles right now so let's compare the two. The Xbox one had a better launch lineup but now they are behind. Dead Rising 3 can't compete with Infamous 3. Titanfall is the big Xbox one release but at it's core it's a Call of Duty meets Brink experience and Killzone offers the same generic format with a robust campaign and the best console graphics this gen. Soon both systems will hit their stride with some good exclusives but which is better right now? Playstation. I will also point out Gears, Halo and Fable are all question marks due to changes within the development teams. Sure we will get sequels but if Gears Judgement and Arkham Origins taught us anything is be careful what you wish for.
So after gathering all the information presented I decided to purchase the cheaper (and technically superior) PS4. Kinect has never been a factor for me and I can't see the $100.000 justification right now. My Xbox live friends list is much larger so of course I decided to keep up with the 360 as my alternative system until it's financially feasible to upgrade it. So much like last gen (Just in reverse order) I will own both Sony and Microsoft consoles but deciding on just one was quite painful and instigated several unwanted fan-boy arguments. /Rant.