The movie industry makes millions of dollars a year on DVD sales and movie theatre tickets. They only cost about $5-$25, though. The video game industry sells games for either $50 or $60 a piece and makes almost as much. This shows that video games are very popular. Hundreds of games are made each year and they are bought quite rapidly. Retailers can attribute a big part of their holiday sales to video games. The only bad thing is that most people have to choose only one video game system, due to the high cost. What are the differences between these expensive systems?
Microsoft’s Xbox 360 is the choice for the hardcore gamer right now. Consumers can pick one up for about $300-$400, depending on if they want a hard drive. It has amassed a huge catalog of games to choose from, no matter your preference on genre. Microsoft has also signed many great game companies, such as Rare, to make exclusive games for the Xbox 360. It also has the best online play of any console in history. For only $50 a year, a consumer can get a live friends list, downloads of the newest game demos, and online play for any game on their system. Consumers can even rent movies or buy episodes of television shows over their online marketplace. This is the system many people pick because of the number of great games it has already had and the online play and marketplace it builds constantly. For the “true” gamer, there is no better choice than the Xbox 360.
Sony’s Playstation 3 is the high-end choice on the market. A consumer will be spending at least $400 on one; a consumer can spend up to $600 for the top model (bigger hard drive and HDMI ports). The selection of games for this system is not the greatest now. Most of the system-selling games aren’t due until early in 2008. Sony is able to make up for this by releasing an online system that is an almost rip-off of Microsoft’s but without the cost. This is causing many people to question Microsoft’s choice of charging for their online systems. While the system hasn’t had a very great selection so far, the games they do have look amazing. The Sony Playstation 3 is at the top of the market for a reason. It has a multi-core processor and a very powerful graphics card that allow it to produce some insanely beautiful graphics. The Playstation 3 is also the first system that allows its video signal to be output at 1080p (the highest setting an HDTV can have right now). Its high cost makes it a choice that many don’t make. For the person with an HDTV and a fat wallet, there is no better choice than the Playstation 3.
Nintendo’s Wii is the system for everyone. Anyone can get into the games, even people who haven’t played games before. The best example of this is Wii Sports, the game that comes packaged in with a Wii. Many stories can be found on the Internet about people who have never touched a game console that love to play Wii Sports. This is also the console to have, according to stores. Even now, it can be difficult to find systems in stores, due to the popularity (or they don’t produce enough, so the rumors say). Unlike the other systems, which use some type of controller you push with your fingers, the Wii has full motion control. You can point it at the screen and use it as a “gun” or use its capabilities to make a game that takes full advantage of the wide range of control. Many developers also like to develop for this system because it is so refreshing to work with and they all believe they have a great idea for it. The Wii is severely lacking in the graphical power, however. This does make it very cheap, at a modest $250. For the new gamer, there is no better choice than the Wii.
For people with a lot of money and patience, a PC (personal computer) is a great choice. The PC has the widest library of any video game system, due to its long life and ease for developing games. The only downsides of a PC are the high cost, the need to upgrade every few years, and the probability of problems. PC components are very expensive, ranging from $80 for a stick of memory to over $600 for a new graphics card (powers the visuals). A consumer will spend this money because a computer needs to be constantly upgraded to ensure that he/she will be able to play the latest games. And if the consumer does not know how to install these components or have someone who can do it for them, it can be very frustrating. Components can only go one way into a computer or the whole thing can screw up for weeks. Consumers should take these downsides into consideration when deciding whether or not a PC is right for them. Another benefit of a PC is the ability to do a lot more on it than most video game systems: access the Internet, download music, watch movies, burn DVDs and CDs, and much more. For the technical person, who also loves to spend money, there is no better choice than the PC.
Your choices are very limited when choosing a video game system unless you have a lot of money to spend! The Xbox 360, Playstation 3, and Wii are consoles that present a different playing experience that should allow anyone to find one that matches their needs, while the PC incorporates all of these experiences at a somewhat higher risk. For most people, only one will be enough, while others will want all of them. No matter which of these you are, these tips should help you pick the system that is for you.