It’s amazing to think that it has been seven years since the premiere of the current generation of consoles. In that time we have seen some dramatic shifts in both the games we play and how we play them.
Now, both Microsoft and Sony have announced the next generation of consoles; Sony will be pushing their PlayStation 5 and Microsoft will be competing with their Xbox Series X. While both companies have kept a tight lid on details about their upcoming consoles so far, we do know more will be revealed in the coming months.
Release and Price
Right now, the only official word out is that both consoles will be releasing in the holidays of 2020, meaning we can expect the systems to hit store shelves between the months of October and December. In terms of price, no word from either Sony or Microsoft about how much the new-gen consoles will go up for, but some are speculating a price range between $400-$600.
In terms of specs, both the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 are pushing for 8k capabilities and a refresh rate of 120Hz. However, the 8k resolution might be pushing it, as only people who have 8k monitors or television sets would be able to take advantage of that feature. Also, both systems share similar specs since both consoles will use a similar processor, AMD Zen 2 CPU, and graphics card, AMD Navi-based GPU. It does seem like the Xbox Series X might have the slight edge in terms of graphics, since it’s boasting 12 teraflops for its graphics card, but we will wait and see what details come from Sony.
One of the big points of contention for gamers was the initial lack of support for backwards compatibility for both consoles. Simply put, players don’t want to have to leave behind the video game library they have spent time and money putting together. Thankfully, both Sony and Microsoft are promising that games that work on the current-gen consoles will also work on next gen. Going even further with that, Microsoft also announced that original Xbox titles and Xbox 360 games that were made backwards compatible for Xbox One will also be playable on the Series X.
In terms of launch titles, both Microsoft and Sony have been relatively quiet about their launch line-up. For Sony, the only PlayStation 5 launch game announced is “Godfall,” a self-described “looter-slasher” from Gearbox, the developers behind “Borderlands.” On the Microsoft end of things, “Halo: Infinite” will be their flagship title for the Xbox Series X, which will also be available for Xbox One players. It seems like both companies are keeping hush about their full lineup of launch titles until later.
What is a safe bet is to see multi-platform titles that will cross over between current- and next-gen consoles. You can expect games releasing later this year, like “Watch Dogs: Legion“ and ”Cyberpunk 2077" to be available also on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.
One interesting thing to note is Microsoft’s announcement of Smart Delivery, a program for the Series X where purchasing a copy of an Xbox One game will net you a free upgrade for the Series X. However, it should be noted this is a program that publishers must choose to opt into. Microsoft has promised that all of their first-party titles will be a part of Smart Delivery.