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A year in, what do you think of the next gen consoles?


HarryBizzle
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A year in, what do you think of the next gen consoles?  

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I have the PS5 and the Series S. I thought the PS5 had an exceptional launch and first six months - new releases have slowed since then but I still have a big backlog to go through and it feels like a pleasingly powerful, properly next-generation experience as well.

 

Ironically, even though the Xbox BC improvement programme to older games is much more comprehensive, the sporadic frame rate upgrades to the various first party PS4 titles have been the most impressive I’ve seen - those games were already graphical powerhouses but at 60fps the likes of Horizon and God of War look like next gen games. 

 

The £70 game price is a misstep - the only game I’ve bought at that level is Demon’s Souls because it was an absolute sure thing.
 

Thing is, I think they can get away with that for their absolute biggest titles - Horizon Far West and God of War next year are going to have been enormously expensive games to make and will look every penny, and probably won’t have a single shred of GAAS nonsense attached, which I think is increasingly unique and probably worth a premium. But it’s nonsensical to apply that price to a smaller title like Returnal that needs a bit of help out the gate, or even Ratchet which has never been a series in the top sales echelon. 

 

I’m less enthusiastic about the Series S, which I got via the £99 game trade-in. Compared to the PS5 it doesn’t feel that next-gen and Game Pass has gone through one of those periods where the heavy volume of stuff on there has managed to miss anything I find interesting.
 

Flight Simulator, the Ascent and Forza Horizon 5 all disappointed me in various ways and Halo’s multiplayer is fun enough but I don’t really see how it’s different from any of the previous Halo multiplayers - they’re all fun too and like them, I’m sure I’ll play it every so often without ever really getting into it because I’m not much of a multiplayer guy. Hopefully the campaign will be a bit of fun but otherwise I don’t see too much that’s likely to interest me on the Xbox until Starfield comes out.

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2 minutes ago, bear said:

Got a Series X at launch and a PS5 earlier this year. 

 

They are simply fantastic machines to play games on. It would have been nice to have had more games to show off the hardwares capabilities but y'know global pandemic and all that, but the machines themselves are just lovely to use and I enjoy playing games on them a hell of a lot more than I did the PS4 or Xboxone. 

Indeed at the moment its the best way to view them - almost like a phone/PC upgrade to a degree. 

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6 minutes ago, Flanders said:

I’m less enthusiastic about the Series S, which I got via the £99 game trade-in. Compared to the PS5 it doesn’t feel that next-gen

 

You should probably have bought a Series X then. Most of the transformative BC improvements are on that, rather than the Series S...

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4 minutes ago, footle said:

 

You should probably have bought a Series X then. Most of the transformative BC improvements are on that, rather than the Series S...

 

Don't think so. Series S does framerate boost, Auto HDR and 360 games which run in 4K on Series X run at 1440p on Series S.

 

Fantastic little console.

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19 minutes ago, Flanders said:

I’m less enthusiastic about the Series S, which I got via the £99 game trade-in. Compared to the PS5 it doesn’t feel that next-gen and Game Pass has gone through one of those periods where the heavy volume of stuff on there has managed to miss anything I find interesting.

Not sure what a "next gen" feeling should be though? What makes something "next gen" these days? Shinier graphics? Perhaps. Gameplay wise games this gen have felt very much the same as last gen for me. 3D audio is a nice addition particularly noticable on Returnal. Controller on PS5 very much so - just hope they make use of all the tech on there. Like Marcus Cerney was saying on his making of PS5 vid they created a toolbox for the developers to use. Hope they do. Loading times are lovely though especially nice to finally have it on consoles after PC has had the tech for a long time now. I think this is the thing though if you've been gaming on a PC for a bit the new consoles won't feel like much of a leap... but coming from a launch PS4/Xbox One it will feel a bit more of an upgrade. 

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40 minutes ago, footle said:

 

You should probably have bought a Series X then. Most of the transformative BC improvements are on that, rather than the Series S...


I tried to get a Series X for my dad to play Flight Simulator on but abandoned the attempt after three months of hopeless efforts! They’re most rare!
 

And I do imagine that the Series X is more likely to provide that next-gen feeling - I think the end results from the technical deficiencies of the S relative to the X/PS5 might already be a bit more significant than originally thought. Stuff being at 4K for one, it’s not such an obvious leap like SD to HD but my PS5 games visibly pop compared to anything on the S. 
 

Like, I’ve heard loads of people say Forza is the best looking game they’ve ever played which must be coming from X owners because it’s sure as hell not that way on the S.

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I’ve been mostly happy with my PS5 experience so far, a decent amount of exclusives for launch window and the controller has been amazing for me (when it didn’t break).

 

My series X has only started to see serious use with the launch of Halo and, to a lesser extent FH5. Gamepass is great but with some notable exceptions and first party games it’s a bit wasted on me because it’s games I’ve either played or passed up on on release. The machine generally felt like getting an upgraded Xbox one or one x in as much as everything felt the same bar a shiny upgrade as it didn’t come with any new releases. I’m surprised it’s been as popular as it has as there has been very little you couldn’t play on your old machine. Still, loving it now with Halo and very excited for the campaign.

 

In general I think there are too many games held back by last gen and I’d rather see lots of proper next gen games where ambition isn’t held back by having to get it to run on old hardware.

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I'm more than happy with the Series X. It's given last-gen games such a shot in the arm that it almost doesn't need next-gen games yet.

 

Fast loading is the biggest improvement that games have had in a long while. When someone says that it's not really next-gen, it's a stop gap, I disagree because of this amazing feature.

 

To echo everyone else, to be able to switch my machine on and be playing a game in seconds rather than minutes is huge for me. As well as in-game loading screens often just being a blip of times once forgotten. I only get minutes here and there to play. It was hardly worth switching the old Xbox One on before. I've said here before that Mass Effect Andromeda jumps from sub-par to awesome just because the fast travel IS FAST! It fixes the core game loop to let you jump around mopping up task after task without feeling stuck where you are. I could go on for 10 minutes and know I'd get one or two things done other than stare at a loading screen. 

 

I think it's one of the reasons Forza Horizon 5 has been annoying me. Sleep mode didn't seem to work, never mind Quick Resume, and then the save game dumps me off at a house nowhere near where I was and I'd have messed up progress. It's also got relatively long loading screens in-game as well. I assume because it's pumping more assets out than last-gen games. But if this is proper next-gen, I don't want it! 

 

I'm also weirdly grateful that there isn't anything too new yet as it's setting in us all a desire for 4k 60fps too. Or at least one of them ...but even then it's setting a precedent that at least want a solid running game rather than some weird non-standard resolution struggling to hit 30fps that looks great on a screenshot. I don't want a bunch of games coming out that I need next-next-gen to play smoothly. 

 

 

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Buying a Series X has very much rekindled my interest in both massive games and indie stuff I'd probably never hear of otherwise (Unpacking :wub: ).

 

Switch is still my favourite because Nintendo, but the sheer breadth of choice on GPU and picking up ongoing games like Overwatch and Fortnte means the Series X is getting a LOT of play time because they're the best place to play. Saying that, my One X is also getting more attention, usually through the fantastic Xbox Remote Play while I'm on the exercise bike In the mornings. Did an hour/30km this morning at 75% max resistance without even noticing. Lag is imperceptible when controlling the console (not syncing via the iPad).

 

Oh, and yet another awesome thing – I've earned over £100 in MS Reward points since getting my Series X on 31st March, just for playing games and doing some bullshit searches on Bing. How good is that?!

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I’ve got an Xbox Series X. It’s my first Xbox since the OG Xbox. I tend to be a Nintendo gamer first and then PS second.
 

I’m not really sure why I went for an Xbox this time, I think it was probably the GP deal that suckered me in. 


I was initially quite underwhelmed with the X, there were no big exclusives at launch and nothing really screamed next gen. I also wasn’t used to consuming games on a subscription basis. But since the somewhat rocky start, I have been using my X more and more, I think I’ve played more games this year than any year ever tbh (this could be partially due to the pandemic). QR and the snappiness of the console really help with this, it pains me to even go back to my switch now, with its loading times and inability to switch games (it would be incredible if you could dip into ACNH so easily).
 

I really like the overall feel of the X, both the OS and the controller (I would love to try the ps5 haptics though). The whole thing is just so solid. I have had hardly any crashes and QR is great when it works. 
 

I was initially intending to get PS5 fairly soon, but I think GP has really changed my value mindset to a point where I am happy to wait for a big price drop before I dip my toe in Sonys waters. Being able to just download a game like Unpacking without having to think about whether it represents good value - it’s 18 quid on Switch - is really liberating. 

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2 hours ago, MattyP said:

 

Not sure what a "next gen" feeling should be though? What makes something "next gen" these days? Shinier graphics? Perhaps. Gameplay wise games this gen have felt very much the same as last gen for me. 3D audio is a nice addition particularly noticable on Returnal. Controller on PS5 very much so - just hope they make use of all the tech on there. Like Marcus Cerney was saying on his making of PS5 vid they created a toolbox for the developers to use. Hope they do. Loading times are lovely though especially nice to finally have it on consoles after PC has had the tech for a long time now. I think this is the thing though if you've been gaming on a PC for a bit the new consoles won't feel like much of a leap... but coming from a launch PS4/Xbox One it will feel a bit more of an upgrade. 


I think we are done with traditional generations now and that the tech is starting to plateau. Every generation the leap has felt less and less, and it seems that MS’ plan is for incremental upgrades over time rather than a cut off after every five or so years. I think this is best for the industry, the last generation of consoles was a massive disappointment for me, developers really struggled and even the likes of Rockstar and Bethesda struggled to get more than a handful of their established franchises produced. We are also going to see publishers rely a lot more of rereleases and remasters to squeeze profit from their back catalogue as the time and costs to create 4K games is going to impede their ability to release new games regularly. I’d like the industry to step back and be happy with the tech we currently have for the next ten years, I don’t think any further advancements in graphical fidelity etc is going to make any actual gameplay improvements.

 

Have had a Series S since launch, it’s an excellent little box and if I didn’t already own a Switch and Dreamcast I’d be more than happy with it as my sole console. Gamepass doesn’t vibe with me, it’s not how I play and consume games, I prefer to have a few new games that I can dip in and out of at any time. 

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3 hours ago, MattyP said:

I actually found the Xbox UI more difficult than that of the PS5. PS5 feels a bit more minimal. Is it because you were used to the Xbox one? I must admit when I first got my PS5 had to work out how to do things but now I'm used to it I like it. Nice big covers for each game - with music etc for each if its been designed for PS5. Also separates the media and games things out nicely. By comparison the Xbox interface felt a bit cluttered with things I didn't really want to see/care about (always felt this way about the Xbox One UI since it was released).

 

Also my PS5 is not noisy at all in operation I sit practically next it and hardly ever hear it when I'm playing - only time it makes a noise is when I have a disk in and I guess this is to be expected (my Series X used to make a noise too the odd time I put a disk in). From my experience both consoles were equally as quiet... although going from memory as I don't have both next to me to compare so perhaps I could be wrong on that.

 

Interesting how perceptions are different.. both consoles Series X and PS5 just felt like lumps of plastic to be fair - PS5 you can remove the sides from to clean it out and install an internal data expansion drive so guess in terms of it feeling less solid maybe that is why but personally think both are equally as well made. Sure the PS5 is a bigger lump of plastic.. :D Although I did prefer the Series X form over PS5's form factor but generally like square, black uniform boxes that I can tuck away.  

No, I was very much in the PS4 camp last gen, so very comfortable with the PS4 UI.

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So last year I picked up a PS4 during the first lockdown and then a series S just after Christmas after being next gen free for a couple of years. 
 

The S is amazing for when you only have 10 minutes. Quick resume is a next gen feature. 
 

plus I haven’t paid a penny for software between previous Xbox library and MS reward points. 
 

The PS4 is my Just Dance machine with the move controllers. If there was a better option for control on the Xbox than the phone app the PS4 would solely be a tv streaming machine. 

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I'm conflicted.  I'm sure of one thing - I definitely made the right choice buying Xbox Series X instead of PS5.  But the Xbox ownership hasn't been what I imagined it would be.  

 

Last week when I was on holiday they released Forza Horizon 5 and it came to Gamepass.  Then I saw that 70 new games were added to Back Compatibility, including, you've guessed it, Ridge Racer 6.  When I got home, first thing I did was fire up Forza.  It's amazing looking and there's a lot going on. But I found myself itching to play RR6 and playing both in quick succession amazed me.  Ridge Racer 6 had me actually racing against opponents within about 2 minutes of booting the disk.  Forza had a dazzling intro but seemed to be taking forever to get me to racing.  Ridge Racer is crisp, clear, looks fab and most importantly, you can see where the track goes.  Forza seems realistic but messy in comparison, with a massive array of modes and options that feels like a massive unmanageable mess. The presentation, whilst amazing, is overwhelming.

 

Previously I've played PSP Ridge Racers 2 via an emulator on the Xbox. It's amazing and would you believe, the PSP game looks and handles BETTER than RR6.  

 

I'm not Forza-bashing here, it's quite incredible as an achievement.  But I just find all the DJing, the podcasting, the character design, the massive map, the millions of customisable options... All seems to rob the game of accessibility and purity.  I can't even see where I'm going without the blue line switched on, which destroys the flawless display by making you watch the line, not the road.

 

So I love my Xbox Series X, it's a fantastic bit of kit.  But I'm using it to play way more 360 stuff than I thought I would.  I've spent time on Flight Sim, Forza, Resident Evil Village etc and these have impressed me. But overall the Series X has become the best way to play all my old back catalogue and I've spent way more time doing that than I expected. First, Evil Within 2, then Evil Within 1, and this week Sonic All Stars Transformed at 60fps.

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22 minutes ago, skondo said:

No, I was very much in the PS4 camp last gen, so very comfortable with the PS4 UI.

Which also in itself might be the problem as the PS5 UI has been moved around a fair bit over the PS4 one. Personally prefer the PS5 one over the time I did have on the PS4 one (had a PS4 at the beginning of the previous gen for a year or so).

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Happy with my PS5. Love the controller, playing PS4 classics at 60 fps is great and the near lack of loading times makes going back to the Switch a bitch. Favourite games so far: Demon's Souls and especially Returnal, which is an exceptional game. Astro is a nice freebie as well.

 

Series X looks very good as well, but as I own a more powerful PC I don't really need one.

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34 minutes ago, dumpster said:

So I love my Xbox Series X, it's a fantastic bit of kit.  But I'm using it to play way more 360 stuff than I thought I would.  I've spent time on Flight Sim, Forza, Resident Evil Village etc. But overall the Series X has become the best way to play all my old back catalogue and I've spent way more time doing that than I expected.

And that is what I found too. Most of the time I was playing my old games on it. But also have a 360 and some of my favourite games haven't been made BC on the newer Xbox consoles so decided to just keep that! :D 

 

Also agree about the older racing games... Playing FH5 has actually made me realise I don't like these type of games (open world racers) whereas I do like a good circuit based arcade racer. So happy days here. Nice that I had the opportunity thanks to GamePass of trying FH5 though. Like mentioned technical marvel and good showcase for the Series hardware but just doesn't appeal to me I really try to like it but its just all the crap in it - and I can't ignore it anymore it grates on me. I start it up have 10 minutes play and turn it off again. Sometimes you just have to accept that some games you just don't like. Or you are tired off as I did play the second one a fair bit and after that spent less and less time on each iteration after that. I skipped three on release completely and only played four because it was on GamePass. 

 

Anyway seems I'm firmly sat in the 7th gen and 9th gen with the 360 at the moment and enjoying more pure arcade racers on the PS5 (Horizon Chase Turbo is great!)

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I ended up getting most multiformat releases on my XB1X over the PS4Pro as I favoured the controller and performance was usually better (according to digital foundry, doubt I noticed it). Now PS5 has the dual sense and developers often put in better haptics it would have to be a very discernible gap in performance for me to favour the series X.

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4 hours ago, dumpster said:

But the Xbox ownership hasn't been what I imagined it would be...  But overall the Series X has become the best way to play all my old back catalogue and I've spent way more time doing that than I expected.

 

I could have predicted you'd spend more time on old games than on new stuff based on the fact that all your threads and posts over the last few years are entirely about nostalgia and how you think new games are crap, and I don't even know you. Was this really unexpected?

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1 minute ago, Tomdominer said:

Its amazing how many people are speaking about how backwards compatibility is "transformed" on the Series X. What I think you all trying to say is that it needs some fucking new games.

 

Well, backwards compatibility on xbox has kind of transformed older games. Everything 3d and old looks better in 4k and 60fps.

 

Even if the game is a piece of old shite, it's still empirically better playing them on a Series X (and an S).

 

I fucking love older games - my fondness of the Gears trilogy knows no bounds. And they are just as enjoyable to me now as they were when they were originally released. Better - because I now run them at 4k and at 60fps (well, 1440p with Gears 3, but it's still better than it was!).

 

I love new games too, mind. It's just...well...a good game's a good game innit?

 

Considering the sheer volume of games I've got that have failed to get much more than an hour of play-time (it's a really, really big fucking list of shame), I'll take a classic and run with it. I'm a terribly selfish gamer - if I like it, then that's probably more than enough.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I love my PS5. I like the way it looks, I like the UI and various QOL features mentioned by others. I mostly like the controller though. The PS4 controller was a shambles comparatively, especially alongside the superior Xbox controller.

 

I've only played a couple of PS5 games (Miles Morales, Ghost of Tsushima, Demon's Souls, Control) and none of them has really knocked my dick off yet, but I'm sure there will be lovely stuff coming soon, maybe

 

Edit: actually Control did knock my dick off, but it wasn't the PS5-ness that impressed me, it was the premise, world-building, storytelling, graphic design, gameplay, leather jacket, flying

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1 hour ago, RubberJohnny said:

 

I could have predicted you'd spend more time on old games than on new stuff based on the fact that all your threads and posts over the last few years are entirely about nostalgia and how you think new games are crap, and I don't even know you.

You're spot on.  I really want to love video games as much as I used to, but there's something somehow too big, too unfocussed, too  massive and in your face about Forza 5, which really throws me off because behind that there's a fantastic game, every bit as good as the classics.  

 

Sorry for being monotonous.  You're right.

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1 hour ago, Tomdominer said:

Its amazing how many people are speaking about how backwards compatibility is "transformed" on the Series X. What I think you all trying to say is that it needs some fucking new games.


😀 

We have a dedicated console troll thread, you know?

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Load times and quick resume are by far the best thing this generation, my old Xbone (VCR) used to take about a minute to boot up and then however long to boot the game. With this generation it takes only 5-10 seconds from turning the console on to playing the game and is far better suited to playing a bit here and there.

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10 hours ago, dumpster said:

You're spot on.  I really want to love video games as much as I used to, but there's something somehow too big, too unfocussed, too  massive and in your face about Forza 5, which really throws me off because behind that there's a fantastic game, every bit as good as the classics.  

 

Sorry for being monotonous.  You're right.

 

I don't think we're being nostalgic to lement the narrowing of viable racing game sub-genres now. Same thing happened to 2D platformers until NSMB saved the genre. Eventually they'll be back. 

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