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Xbox One and PlayStation 4 - Still Worth Buying?

After E3 2019, everyone seems to be talking about what the next generation of consoles might bring, how Google Stadia will influence the market, and how excited they are for the future of gaming.

Brandon Perton

November 6, 2019

4 Min Read

However, those who don't own a console and are looking to purchase one are confused: should they wait until the fall of 2020, or are the current generation of gaming consoles still worth a buy? If you were wondering the same thing, hopefully, this article written by TheOSGVault will help answer your questions.

One of the biggest concerns regarding buying a console towards the end of its life cycle is the possibility of the company pulling the plug on the servers and thus rendering digital purchases and online-only games useless. Despite this being a valid concern a decade ago, when servers were expensive to host, nowadays cheap servers are a dime a dozen, so in many cases, it costs companies more time and money to shut down the servers and deal with the fallout than to keep them on for the players that are still enjoying their games and services.

Another point to dispel the concern of servers shutting down is the positive reception to Microsoft's backward compatibility program, as well as their promise that their next- generation console will be fully backward compatible, which, without a doubt, has prompted Sony to work on backward compatibility as well. Chances are if you do buy an older console, you will probably be able to enjoy the games you buy on it for the foreseeable future.

In order to properly analyze whether a current generation console is worth buying, one needs to go over the advantages and disadvantages of both the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4.

The Xbox One has as its advantage its stellar user services: The Xbox Live subscription gives you 2 Xbox 360 games and 2 Xbox One games per month, as well as access to weekly sales, while the Game Pass subscription gives you instant access to hundreds of high-quality games. But the greatest user service Microsoft provided was the brilliant backward compatibility program, which made over 600 Xbox 360 and original Xbox games available for play on the Xbox One - if you had the digital license or the disc, all you had to do was install and play.

Despite its great features, the Xbox One lacks in the exclusive games department, as Microsoft Studios dropped the ball. The rocky beginning of the Xbox One's life also means that there are overall fewer players in online games than there would be on the PlayStation 4 and that certain third-party companies opted to skip the Xbox One when releasing their games.

That being said, any console in the Xbox One family is worth picking up, as all of them have their separate advantages. For example, the original model should be a bargain on the second-hand market, only costing around $100 nowadays. The Xbox One S should also be cheap, as it currently is the cheapest 4K Blu-Ray player and is often deeply discounted, or bundled with new titles. Last but not least, the Xbox One X is currently the strongest console on the market, and well worth its high price, due to it being capable of 4K rendering.

If you are more of a Sony fan, or if you simply like the idea of slaying gods as Kratos more than saving the universe as Master Chief, then the PlayStation 4 is  worth looking into. Its advantages and disadvantages are the opposite of the Xbox One's: the PlayStation 4 has many worthwhile exclusive games, as well as the largest console user base at the moment. However, Sony's dominion over the console market has made them complacent, as the system lacks a backward compatibility program similar to the one offered by Microsoft, and there have been many instances in which Sony has refused letting PlayStation 4 users play with other platforms, for various reasons.

Regardless, the PlayStation 4 is worth getting, and just like the Xbox One, the base model should be cheap on the second-hand market, while the Slim will offer slightly increased performance, and the Pro will offer powerful performance, albeit for a bigger price.

All in all, whether you plan on getting an Xbox or a PlayStation, buying a current generation console is still worth your money. Not only are the upcoming consoles still a long time away, but even when they will release, they will probably set you back double what buying an Xbox One or a PlayStation 4 would cost, and they will probably have a very limited library of games for the first few years.

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