Playstation 4: Still waiting...

Sony's tagline for the PS4 has been "Greatness Awaits", of course with the buzz from E3 essentially making Sony the hero of the gamer crowd, maybe instant greatness is what everyone is expecting. And because we have extremely short memory, possibly. The PS2 did not start out great, many would say the PS3 didn't get great until the last 2 or 3 years (and the Xbox & Xbox 360 had growing pains as well). In that tradition, the PS4 does not start out great, but I believe it is the foundation for a great system, with great games coming for it, so I'll touch on the positives and negatives and talk about the near future.

Yeah, might wanna skip both of these....
The Bad: To say there are no good games for the system is unfair, but the best offerings don't make a great case for plunking down $400. Knack is absolutely awful. I hate the art style, the controls are terrible (i.e. your primary means of dodging just isn't remotely responsive) and it's filled with cheap hits that pretty much instantly kill you, the checkpoint system is pretty bad too, often knocking you back several encounters. It's not old school design as some defenders have claimed, it's just bad design. Killzone is a pretty decent shooter, but decent won't cut it with competition like Battlefield and COD. It looks incredible at times, so the tiny flaws really stand out (like the awful, awful rain). So what are your best bets? Well, it doesn't offer any significant improvements but I'm having a blast with Injustice: Ultimate Edition and Warframe is pretty fun. Reportedly NBA 2K14 is fantastic and so is Need For Speed Rivals. So you have a couple solid games, but for those looking for something mind-blowing that's exclusively next gen, it's still about 4 months til Infamous hits and then the games should start rolling out on a regular basis. But if you just traded up to next gen, it may seem like a long dry spell.

Also that hard drive is going to fill up QUICK. I already have over 1/5 filled with just a couple games and apps (along with whatever the OS takes up). This probably won't be a huge issue for the first year, but with a slate of amazing indie titles in the pipeline and AAA games later in 2014 it could be. Yes you can switch out the drive but that's an added expense on top of your already pricey console.

The other issue that is bound to bug core gamers is that by optimistic estimations, the controller has 8 hours of battery life. Granted, for a lot of people who have you know, jobs and other things in their lives, that's not a huge deal, I mean I'm lucky to get more than 10 hours in over a week. But that certainly could put a damper on a big gaming weekend.

Do I even have to mention the craptacular headset? I don't think many are using it because in the online games I have played, no one has been talking...

Ok, enough with the bad, because I think it's pretty awesome hardware, so on with the Good:

All other controllers bow down before me...

Granted, I have still have yet to play with the Xbox One's controller, which by all accounts is also great. But the Dual Shock 4 is easily the best controller to ever grace a Sony console and arguably one of the best gaming controllers to date. It's just feels great and comfortable, the triggers are much improved, the touch screen use is minimal so far but unobtrusive and really responsive. The loss of the long-standing start & select buttons will certainly throw some off but you get used to the option & share buttons quick enough. This is just a great controller for just about any type of game.

The UI is also pretty cool, it's just slick and clean, and the ability to run two apps at once is nice so you can switch back and forth quickly (though understandably not two games at once). We'll see if they can keep it up with tons of games and apps but it's a really good start. It's also fast, though I don't think it's as fast as the Xbox one claims to be, but way way faster than the PS3 interface. The loading also works fairly quickly as I was able to start games after they downloaded just a little bit.

I also have to admit that at first my attitude about social integration was basically "meh", but I enjoy seeing my activites and achievements quickly posted to facebook with no hassle, which was not the case on the PS3 and especially the 360.

Then there is the freebies-Warframe, Blacklight Retribution & DC Universe Online are all great free titles that you don't even have to have PS plus for those. Granted you can download those on PC as well, but it's fun to be able to play them on your TV with a controller on your couch. Have PS plus as well? Awesome you get Resogun for free too (the less said about Contrast the better). That could potentially keep you busy for months without buying a single game. Not a bad deal.

I also love the Playstation App on my phone, getting to send & receive friend requests wherever I am is awesome, no more writing down usernames and then forgetting them ever again!

 In the end, I believe the PS4 will be a great system, it's already got the foundation there, which puts it in a much better state than the PS3 at launch so it will get there a lot faster than its predecessor. It's just lacking some truly killer games, but those will come soon with titles like Infamous, Destiny, The Order 1886 and more on the way already in the next year. And a ton of great-looking indie titles are on the way to fill the gaps in-between.  Add in Gakai and you certainly have a great system that is really geared towards gamers that still throws in the social and media apps you want.

I wish I could say I'll be able to give an in-depth look at the Xbox One next week but that's just not financially feasible. But with a little luck I'll have that by next April so it won't be too long til I'm enjoying that as well. I should have another post up by Wednesday. Until then everybody enjoy their new consoles. Or their current still awesome old consoles for that matter.

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