I recently ended my love affair with the Xbox One and moved over to the Playstation 4, and I’ll be honest in saying that I haven’t regretted my decision in the slightest.
Before I wrote this article, I used to spend hours defending the Xbox One when my mates used to try and send it to the executioner’s block, each of them insisting that the PS4 was by far the better console and that in comparison, the Xbox One was far below average. I disagreed, arguing that it wasn’t just a games console, but a multimedia system, and that the controller was comfier than the PS4. But secretly, I was harbouring a growing hatred for my console.
Initially, I was drawn to the Xbox One for two main reasons. The first was I had been an Xbox man right from the original Xbox and moved over to Xbox 360. Even though two of my consoles had the red ring of death, I was still extremely happy with the way the console worked and the selection of games that were out there. I had amassed a pretty damn good gamer score, and at the time, I was a fan of the exclusive games on that console. To me, it made sense to get an Xbox One.
The second reason I went for the Xbox One is because I was intrigued by games such as Ryse; a game that was not available on the PS4, and although I missed out on the like of The Last of Us Remastered, I didn’t see this as too much of an issue.
But within months of having the console, I began to realise that it was far from perfect. One of the things that threw me right from the beginning was the stupid installation times, sometimes lasting in excess of six hours. I live in a place with notoriously poor internet speeds, and I remember Ryse having to install overnight before I could play it.
It also became apparent quite quickly that the choice of console exclusive games for the Xbox One were far below par and that Sony were starting to re-release the Kingdom Hearts franchise and remaster the Final Fantasy games, a series which still holds a special place in my heart.
My experiences with the Xbox One began to deteriorate. Slower loading times, an awkward and bulky user interface and consistent problems with the Microsoft servers all started to make me hate my console – I even dreaded putting in a new game just to see how long it would take to install before I could play it.
The final nail in the coffin came when it took three days to install Final Fantasy XV and with piss poor internet speed, the server kept logging me out and then logging me back in. So I boxed it up and traded it in.
The first thing I noticed as soon as I plugged the PS4 in and set it up was just how smooth and easy the console is to use. Everything is easily navigable and the games and apps you use every day are right in front of you. I also loved the fact that when playing some games, the chatter comes through the controller; a feature I was not aware of until recently.
Another fact is the choice of exclusive games that are available for the PS4 is by far superior to its competition. Games like Until Dawn, Horizon: Zero Dawn and Uncharted have kept me hooked for hours; an experience I thought was long dead when I had the Xbox One. I may be wrong, but the graphics on these games look far better than the Xbox One (Horizon Zero Dawn wouldn’t look anywhere near as good on the Xbox!) and I finally found out why everyone still applauds The Last of Us.
But the stand-out feature for me is the install time when you insert the disc, which this is minutes rather than hours. I am also really impressed with the fact that the PS4 does not always force you to be online. If you can’t connect to the internet with your Xbox One, the loss of features is blaringly obvious, but with the PS4, this doesn’t seem to be the case.
There are still some Xbox One features I miss, though. I was really starting to get behind their backwards compatibility system and I still miss playing Gears of War 4 online, but those are sacrifices I can make to play the easily better PS4.
But overall I still believe that I made the right decision. With a lot of the XBOX ‘exclusives’ at E3 now also being confirmed for PS4; Sony’s console is the right choice for my circumstances. I am not taking anything away from the One, far from it, but with the Xbox One X due to hit the shelves soon, Microsoft need to sit down and evaluate how their console works – because it’s not for everyone.
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