By Furious Francis, editor-in-chief
With the Wii U being the first of the big three to release their next generation system, Nintendo has set a new standard for system versatility. Off TV Play with the Gamepad, Wiimote & Nun-chuck, and the Wii U Pro controller, the Wii U offers a bevy of ways to play your games. That type of versatility is exactly what I want out of a Nintendo system. MiiVerse is also one of the coolest applications to unite gaming communities ever, and is getting tons of love from around the internet. Sony has proven they deserve my money by releasing more quality games, free online play, and a premium service that’s actually worth my money. Microsoft on the other hand, has charged me for online multiplayer, released a firestorm of Kinect games, destroyed Rare, and melted three Xbox 360’s I’ve owned. It’s clear what systems I will be purchasing for the next generation of gaming: Wii U (which I already did) & the PS4.
Would you pay for Xbox Live if you could play games online for free?
Does Microsoft even make games anymore? It’s just Halo, Gears, Forza, and a shitload of Kinect, then charge me $50 bucks for Xbox Live. Would anybody even pay for Xbox Live, if you could play multiplayer games for free like the PS3 and Wii U? I know I wouldn’t, and for next generation, i’m going to pass on paying for Xbox Live. Sony has created the PlayStation Network, that’s just as good and offers free online play. With PlayStation Plus, Sony offers free games! Not online multiplayer, access to Hulu or FM Radio, but actual games you can download for free and play. I don’t believe Microsoft’s actual online play is so much better, or worth paying money for. I played Mass Effect 3 online, on both systems, and it was the same. I even played the Wii U version online…. and it was the same! There all really good…. but one of them you have to pay for. I ran the same tests on Black Ops 2 and Trine 2. Nintendo and Sony have caught up to Microsoft in terms of the online space. All the exclusive games the Xbox 360 got early in its life-cycle are gone. The days of Mass Effect, Bioshock, and Star Ocean releasing as exclusives are over.
Why Doesn’t Xbox Live give you more?
It’s sad when I see gamer’s defending Microsoft, charging them for online play, when Sony does a damn good job for free. Why doesn’t Microsoft offer some of their backlog of games for free, for 1+ year veterans of Xbox Live? Sony is doing the premium service right, and Nintendo isn’t far off with their Digital Program that gives users eShop credit back, for every game they purchase through the service. Microsoft had upper hand with achievements at launch and years after, but Sony has trophies now, while the Wii U doesn’t have a unified achievement system, developers can release apps that use their own rewards system like Ubisoft’s Uplay. Microsoft has lost its edge. If you’re not into Halo, Gears, or Forza, whats the need to own the system? Kinect? Where are the true exclusive IPs? Microsoft is making millions of dollars on Xbox Live and they are using it for Kinect 2.0 and Xbox TV for Xbox 720. They should be spending that money picking up new talented development studios and making more quality first party titles. Come on, Fable the Journey on Kinect? That’s a spit in the face of the core fans that bought the first three games.
PS4 and Wii U work in tandem
It’s surprising to see how many hardcore PlayStation fans dismiss the Wii U GamePad in lieu of the PS3+Vita combination. They seem to think the PS3+Vita can do cool things when used together, but some how dismiss Nintendo’s use of the Wii U+Gamepad. If you like the PS3+Vita combo, you should be extremely excited about the Wii U. As of now, the PS3+Vita combo doesn’t have much support, while the Wii U uses it in every game to some extent. I suggest PS3 owners and future PS4 owners to buy a Wii U to compliment their main PlayStation system. Uncharted, Infamous, Killzone, Resistance, The Last of Us, The Last Guardian, StarHawk, PlayStation All Stars, and more. Mario, Metroid, Zelda, Fire Emblem, Pokemon, Kirby, Smash Bros, F-zero, Starfox, and more on the Wii U side. The PS4 + Wii U combination for next generation will be deadly. Concerned about graphics? Got your PS4, what something unique that has cool local co-op and multiplayer? The Wii U is right there. Every gamer should have both to experience the seamless dual screen gameplay of the Wii U and the great first party titles Sony produces.
It’s a Numbers game
It’s all about the numbers. How many exclusives will a system get? How many IPs do they own? Whats the price? How many features does it have? Microsoft unfortunately is losing the numbers game with me. I need more value in the systems and games I purchase. Xbox Live has its audience, and I know a lot of people enjoy the service. However, a lot of the content that is for gold members is free on the internet, or available on other consoles for free. Microsoft, if your going to charge for a service, at least give us more incentives other than dangling the online multiplayer carrot over our heads with Xbox Live. You can start with a free back log of games instantly, and a rewards program like Nintendo’s Digital Deluxe with Wii U.
Will I play the Xbox 720? Yes, of course I will, but unless Microsoft makes some serious changes with their Xbox Live structure and makes more games for the core gamers, I’ll just opt for one in the office.
Why do you guys pay for Xbox Live? To Play Microsoft’s first party titles? The applications? Your friends? What next generation system’s do you want to own or will you own? Tell me all about it in the comments below.
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