Sony and Microsoft both have new games consoles scheduled for release in 2020. This is a big year for the video game industry with a lot of money invested in the rival platforms. The premium console market – in which the Xbox Series X and the PS5 will both sit – is worth some NZD$22.75 billion globally. Mind you, that is dwarfed by the mobile gaming market which, according to recent industry reports, was worth almost five times that amount around the world. Of course, mobile casino games and online pokies make up a big proportion of this part of the gaming sector. Interestingly, both Sony and Microsoft have taken this phenomenon on board and will henceforth offer browser-based gaming within their console platforms as well as more online multiplayer games. This will allow video gamers to take part in the casino-like experiences that many players already enjoy and even win some money at if they are lucky enough! What else can players expect of these two rival consoles which are both trying to outdo one another?
The Scheduled Console Release 2020
Although Microsoft versus Sony has been a big battle for almost two decades, Sony has not released a new platform since the PS4 first came out in 2013. Okay, the games you can play on it have improved in that time but seven years is a long period in gaming technology. Although we know that the long-awaited PS5 has suffered from some setbacks in its development, most gamers appreciate that the wait will be worth it so long as Sony irons out all of the console’s problems – just as it has largely done with previous iterations of the platform. All we can say for now is that the PS5 is due late in 2020, probably to coincide with the Christmas market.
On the other hand, the Xbox Series X has already been unveiled by Microsoft. They have demonstrated its capabilities whereas the PS5 has been more shrouded in mystery. It first went on show late last year and more is set to be revealed in May 2020. However, the actual public release date is still not confirmed and, like the PS5, it won’t be around to buy until the final few months of the year at the earliest.
Which Games Are Confirmed For the Sony Console?
One of the most anticipated games we know is going to be great on the PS5 is Call of Duty: Warzone. This game will feature more incoming operators and changing maps to add real depth to the popular gaming franchise. Godfall is another top title that is likely to kick start PS5’s sales when it hits the shelves towards the end of the year. This is very much a fantasy role-playing game but one in which player skill will be better rewarded than others around. Next on many gamers’ wish lists is Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, Ubisoft’s epic drama continuing in a distinctly Nordic Setting. All of these games will make great use of the PS5’s enormous processing power with some next-level graphics and smooth animation on offer.
Which Games Are Confirmed for the Microsoft Console?
Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla has also been confirmed for the Xbox Series X, so you won’t have to worry if you are thinking about upgrading to the Microsoft console and want to enjoy the latest iteration of this particular game franchise. 4K resolution and HDR support will be available, according to Ubisoft. Battlefield 6 is also said to be launched on the new Xbox platform which is good news for fans of the genre. Some had thought Electronic Arts might have abandoned the game until it was announced for the new Xbox. A limitless role-playing game in the form of Cyberpunk 2077 will also be launched on the platform. It is said to feature smart delivery that will allow it to work on the Xbox One as well as the Series X.
What Will the Gamer Equipment Look Like for the New PlayStation and Xbox?
The PS5’s prototype has a novel design that is nothing like we have seen before from Sony. It has an interesting V-shaped form which provides plenty of air ventilation. Sony will also update its controllers with a smoother design with DualSense technology. The Xbox Series X, on the other hand, has already been put on public show and what can you say about it? Well, it looks very much like a box. The console resembles a chunk of granite that has been squared off into a monolithic cuboid. Although the game controllers will be updated, Microsoft has made old controllers forward compatible so you can continue to use your favourite ones.
Some Technical Analysis: PS5 and Xbox Series X
To begin with, the PS5 has a superfast 8x Zen 2 Cores CPU which runs at 3.5GHz. Its custom RDNA 2 GPU will offer 10.28 teraflops and there is 16 GB of memory to play with to get you going. A further 825 GB of SSD storage will also be available with further expansion possible if necessary. The optical drive offered is a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray.
When it comes to the Series X, owners can expect a customised 8-core, 16-thread processor which has Zen 2 and Navi architecture. It runs at 3.8 GHz, a slightly higher rate than the Sony rival, of course. The Xbox will also feature a 12 teraflop FPU that has an impressive 3,328 stream processors. Furthermore, the console has 16 GB of GDDR6 RAM which will be split between the GPU and CPU. 8K resolution will be supported but only when this is available from the media being viewed, however. A 1 TB custom NVMe SSD storage capacity will be provided, too.
Great Multiplayer Games For Console Players
In recent times, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has been one of the most playable multiplayer games around and one of the few of these types of games to attract PlayStation, Xbox and PC gamers onto the same gaming platform. Another huge hit has been Fortnite which has entered popular consciousness outside of the gaming world. This multiplayer game is available on all platforms, not just Xbox and PlayStation, but PCs, Switch and even mobile devices, too. Of course, it is not just first person games that have got the multi-platform treatment. The car-based game Rocket League has been popular on the PS4, the Xbox, Switch and PCs for some time now. Other leading titles that work well over the four main gaming platforms include Paladins: Champions of the Realm and World of Warships. Given these have worked so well, more cross-fertilisation between the Series X and the PS5 can only be expected down the line
Will PC Gamers Shift to Consoles?
Given that PC gamers are very loyal to their machines, a big question for both Microsoft and Sony is not how much they can eat into each other’s market shares but how many PC users they will tempt away to become console players. One of the chief reasons PC users like to stay loyal is the Steam platform which really works well and offers plenty of discounted pricing on older games. In addition, PC users know that there are many more games for them to choose from than ever make it to the console market. The hugely popular World of Warcraft, for example, has never been converted to function on a console.
In addition, PCs are highly configurable and you can upgrade yours in the way you see fit in a manner that is just impossible with a conventional a gaming console. If you like the technology and have invested time, effort and money upgrading your computer, then it is likely you won’t be converted. That said, some of the keyboards, headsets and mice available for consoles these days are making them much more like a PC gaming experience, from a playing point of view, at least.
Gambling and Next-Generation Console Gaming
Finally, we should mention that the browser-based gaming that is soon to be offered with the latest generation of consoles will allow home-based players to enjoy all of the games that many mobile gamers currently play. Mobile games don’t always have the depth of some of the more expensive console games but they are often highly playable. What’s more, many casino games, such as online pokies, are played in a browser these days. Both the PS5 and the Series X will allow owners to enjoy table games soon. This means that gambling is going to become part of the fun of using them.
As such, the shift away from PC gaming may be a little more advanced than some industry commentators have predicted. After all, with greater cohesion among the multiplayer options and the variety of shared gaming experiences players can enjoy – regardless of the device they are using – some of the previously important brand differentiators are likely to become blurred. And that is all positive if you like to enjoy gambling games as much as traditional escapist video games.