Like I do every year, I sat down last week and watched each of the E3 press conferences. Putting aside the usual batch of awkward moments, missteps, and botched announcements, I think a lot of people were more up on the show this year than they have been in a while. Bethesda came out very strong for its first ever press conference, Microsoft and Nintendo continued their upward momentum with more to come at Gamescom and TGS, and the rest of the third parties managed surprisingly well. All and all, I'm looking forward to the next couple years of gaming much more than I did for the previous two.
Then there's Sony. I think we can all agree, their conference was packed with some pretty huge announcements and a lot of fanfare. The Last Guardian re-appeared, Guerrilla debuted its new IP, Shenmue 3 got a (now funded) Kickstarter, and Final Fantasy VII is finally being remade as a timed PS4 exclusive. Those are some pretty massive bombshells at a time when so many announcements like these drop before E3 or just end up being leaked. Sony certainly made a good case for the PS4's continued success this generation, adding onto their already impressive 23M unit start. But much like last year's conference I can't help by ask myself: why should I buy one this year?
That's not to say the PS4 has a poor software library by any means. There's about 20 or so multi-platform titles I've held off on to play their best versions on 8th gen, on top of a dozen or so re-releases and some smaller digital stuff I'd like to pick up eventually. And with Assassin's Creed, Dying Light, Evolve, Witcher, and Batman being 8th gen only (with many more to come), I'm definitely going to need to pick up a new system if I'd like to continue playing new releases at all. Since PS4 has the better hardware, it's likely I'll be doing most of my third party gaming there.
But that's not reason enough for me to spend $400 on a new console right now. Or even this holiday, for that matter. I'm still not caught up with the previous Infamous, Killzone, and LBP games, Knack, Driveclub, and The Order ended up being disappointments, and while Bloodborne is apparently incredible I've never been one for the Souls games. So that leaves... Until Dawn? I guess we'll see how that one turns out upon release. I'll be honest, my expectations aren't too high.
But next year? Well that's pretty much a guarantee. Ratchet and Uncharted are the reasons I bought a PS3, and they (probably along with Horizon) will be my reasons for buying a PS4. It's not that I wouldn't have plenty to play on Sony's newest hardware, it's just that I can't justify spending the money on an upgrade for ports, indies, and third party games. As a longtime fan of the series, Halo 5 is enough for me to buy an XB1; a decision made that much easier by Sunset Overdrive, 360 backward compatibility, and my Live friends list. And WiiU? With sale prices frequently hitting $250 or lower, the dozen or so exclusives it has even make that a better proposition for me right now than a PS4.
Who knows. Maybe there will be some Black Friday deal on a PS4 Battlefront bundle and my inner Star Wars nerd will force me to cave. But at this point, it's looking like I'll be waiting another near to put my PS3 out to pasture. Which I think begs the question: how alone am I in that thinking? On the back of nothing but a $50 price cut and a Halo re-release, the XB1 outsold the PS4 in the US by a third in the two busiest sales months last year. For 2015, Microsoft has Halo 5, an exclusive new Forza, and Rise of the Tomb Raider, a sequel to a game which did 8M worldwide. The WiiU's exclusives will continue to grow this holiday with Yoshi, Xenoblade, and Star Fox. The PS4 has timed exclusive DLC for COD and Battlefront. That's a bit of a stark contrast.
What about you guys? Have you made the jump to 8th gen yet? Did you pick up a PS4 or another console? Or are you sitting back on PC laughing at all this nonsense? Feedback welcome in the comments, as always.