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PS4 vs Xbox One, The Run Down

I’m going to have to delay the lightning version of the PS4 conference recap and instead do a simple list run between features and exclusive titles offered between the two consoles. (hint I think the PS4 won).

DRM / Gaming Options

I’m listing this first not to show favoritism but I think its important you know what divides these two consoles on a basic level. It comes down to this, the Xbox One is based heavily around the idea of permanent ownership of games, where the PS4 is built around more common conventions allowing the trading, selling, and buying of used games. While both points are worthy of argument lets first talk about implementation


Blue Ray Disks generally come with a form of encryption and product validation that is difficult to copy, this ensures that the copy of a game you are trying to play was created by Sony or one of its disk distributors, essentially it fends off basic piracy tactics of simply copying disks

Xbox One

The Xbox One is built to Require the following

  • You must be online at all times to make sure you pass a mandatory once a day system check
  • If using your account on a different console that the one you own you must be online for hourly check ins

Failure to meet either of the above prevents the console from playing games and presumably all other Xbox live related services (this may or may not extend to things like Netflix though it has in the past).

The PS4 does not need these check ins.

What this means is your Xbox is tied to the reliability of your internet connection and becomes a very expensive Blue-ray player when said reliability gives out.

This relates to games in the following way.


Disk based games do not need online authentication (and baring special situations with system updates no connection at all) which is a result of Sony choosing not to impose any more DRM

Xbox One

Xbox One games can only be traded / shared if the publisher allows it in most situations.

You can however.

  • Trade at participating retailers if the publisher allows it
  • Share a game ONCE with a friend who has been on your friend’s list for over 30 days.

You see Xbox One ownership is intended by design to be much more permanent, which will supposedly result in better long term support for your games. Comparatively the PS4  allows you to own your games and not just the license for play, this means used games can cheapen the cost of supplying your entertainment stash and allow you to more cost effectively rid yourself of ill thought out purchases, as well as ensuring your games will remain playable into the next console generation.


What that subscription does however varies.

Play Station Plus


  • $49.99 Year
  • $17.99 3-month
  • $9.99 monthly (though should slip under $5 as advertised)


  • 1 monthly free game (classically you can keep them as long as you are subscribed)
  • online multiplayer
  • While only a single account tends to be covered by a Plus subscription it only needs to be the account that goes online for multiplayer

Xbox Live


  • $59.99 year
  • $24.99 3-month
  • $14.99 monthly (if they keep this option


  • Required for downloads (or is on the Xbox 360) such as Netflix and YouTube
  • online multiplayer
  • 2 free DISCONTINUED games a month
  • multiple accounts on one payment

Classically Microsoft has tied all of its online features to Xbox live and has given no sign that this will change. What this means is if you want Netflix on your PS3, plug it into your router, If you want Netflix on your Xbox one, Cough up an extra $59.99.

My console for large parts of the year acts mostly like an overpriced Roku Box so its worth considering, whats more is Play Station Plus games tend to be fairly recent and by that virtue actually still costly to buy (ie $40 to $20 dollars) where the games Microsoft is talking about might cost $10 total if you purchased the disks.

Whats more is I don’t have to pay to use my Playstation for Netflix but i do have to pay to do the same with an Xbox.

To summarize here is what your getting

Play Station 4

  • Cheaper online which is only required for multiplayer
  • The ability to Buy and Trade new and used games
  • A console you can use offline


  • $399.99 for the console + minimum $49.99 yearly for multiplayer

Xbox One

  • More costly online which will (probably) be required for everything including non gaming functions
  • You’ll have to by new games more often than not, however this could be offset by better support for purchased titles


  • $499.99 for the console + minimum $59.99 yearly for more than just Blu-ray and Network stored movie functions (windows media center)

As a side note before I talk about games the PS4 is about the size of two small laptops stacked or 3 iPads, where the Xbox One is about the size of a VCR. It’s worth considering as part of the layout for your home media center.

The Games (exclusives)

Games marked with an asterisk * are also available on PC


  • The Order
  • Killzone
  • DriveClub
  • Infamous Second Son
  • Knack
  • Transistor
  • Mercenary Kings
  • Octodad *
  • Odd World New And Tastey
  • Mad Max

Xbox One

  • Forza 5
  • Ryse: Son Of Roam
  • Spark
  • Sunset Overdrive
  • Crimson Dragon
  • Dead Rising 3
  • Witcher 3 *(will also be on PS4)
  • Titan Fall *

While the lists are almost the same length its worth saying that PS4 seems to have a bit more interesting games on its side, though this can be blamed on allot of Xbox One titles only showing up with cinematic trailers and not real gameplay. I’d reserve judgement for what we actually see as these will fade away deeper into the consoles life cycles if both can manage a hefty install base.

Backwards compatibility


Backwards compatibility will be available via online streaming of old PS3 games along with all previous PS titles typically starting with the cheap then the famous then whats left over

Xbox One

None, this is a new console and it will require newer games.

While this doesn’t sound important remember that when there is a slow gaming season or simple nothing to buy, backwards compatibility artificially pads the amount of games you can play with a console thus increasing its value beyond current market trends.

My vote is for the PS4, but that’s just me, see you tomorrow after the Nintendo Conference.

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