PlayStation 5 Review: Sony’s New Console Is an Entertaining Behemoth

This holiday season, we are faced with a tough quandary: The new PlayStation and Xbox consoles are arriving. Which should we gift to our loved ones — or to ourselves?

There are plenty of options. Beginning Thursday, Sony will ship two versions of the PlayStation 5: a $500 model that includes a disc drive, and a smaller $400 disc-free version that runs downloaded games. The Xbox — which also comes in two models, the $500 Series X and the $300 Series S — will launch on Tuesday.

There are many types of gamers, so we — Brian X. Chen, a PlayStation loyalist, and Mike Isaac, who grew up playing Xbox — test-drove both consoles in our homes. Earlier this week, we shared our impressions of the Xbox. This review will focus on the PlayStation 5.

BRIAN Hello again, Mike! Let’s forget about Biden vs. Trump for a moment to continue our debate about Xbox vs. PlayStation.

MIKE Is the PS5 the Biden or the Trump in this analogy?

Mmm, you know what? I’ll avoid answering that.

This is the ultimate test for companies like Sony and Microsoft. Sony spent the past seven years on top with a slate of killer games for the PS4, and largely overshadowed the Xbox.

After a few weeks with the new PS5, what do you think? Is this another winner?

BRIAN I’ll start with some disclosures. I’ve owned PlayStations since the first generation and never had an Xbox. But in 2006, I felt burned by the PlayStation 3, which had mostly lame games compared with Xbox 360, so I’ve kept an open mind for this new generation.

With that all said, I think PlayStation 5 is going to win my vote with my wallet this round. What about you?

MIKE I was reluctant to come out strong and stump for Sony, but you’re right. If I were to plunk down 500 bucks on a piece of hardware right now, it would be the PS5. I want to hear what won you over.

BRIAN Let’s start with hardware before we move on to games and the overall experience.

First things first: The PS5 is a behemoth. It’s more than 15 inches tall — that’s roughly four inches taller than the Xbox Series X. So you’ll need to figure out where you’re going to place it. (There’s also an ugly black stand that can be screwed on to keep it more stable, but I didn’t use it.)

In general, I like the console design. It looks curvy and futuristic and reminds me of a concept car.

MIKE Do you remember that computing brand Alienware? They made really expensive, insane computer systems with neon all over them? The company is part of Dell now, but I remember all of their ads in computer magazines I read during my youth. That was my immediate thought out of the box.

BRIAN Definitely, and that’s basically what the PS5 is: a powerful computer devoted to gaming. Similar to the new Xbox, it has a graphics processor that supports ray tracing, a complex rendering process that makes lighting and shadows look more realistic in graphics.

MIKE The graphics are very good. In the launch game we played, Spider-Man: Miles Morales, I could immediately tell how sharp the characters’ faces and landscapes were while playing. Colors popped, like the brilliant neon purples, reds and greens. Each one of Spider-Man’s various suits looked fantastic!

There is one thing I want to call out, though. I had a strange moment with the PS5 controller that struck me as potentially sensitive. It has a microphone built into it. That’s convenient, since you won’t immediately have to buy a separate headset to chat with friends.

But I wasn’t used to it. I had a moment where I was voice-chatting a friend on my iPhone while playing Call of Duty multiplayer, and my partner in the game reminded me that he could hear me! It freaked me out.

BRIAN Oh, man. Don’t carry your controller with you during bathroom breaks.

MIKE Yes, to be fair there’s a button and glowing icon that tells you when it’s on or off. But still, I wasn’t used to it. Learning curve!

BRIAN The controller is pretty nice otherwise. It’s larger and heavier than the previous PlayStation controllers but feels comfortable to hold for long sessions.

MIKE Can I geek out on the storage drive?


MIKE So Sony (and Microsoft) include what’s called a solid-state drive for storing all of your games and apps on the system. It loads games faster than traditional spinning hard-disk drives. It makes an enormous difference. I can’t tell you how much of my life has been whittled away by PS4 loading screens in the past.

BRIAN Tell me about it. Remember Red Dead Redemption 2 loading screens on the PS4?

MIKE Hah, I used to go to the kitchen and make a snack while RDR2 loaded up!

BRIAN With Spider-Man, it took about three seconds for the game to launch, and that is remarkable.

MIKE Yes, 100 percent. I’ve been really into Call of Duty: Warzone for the past few months — it has been my way to hang out with friends online during the pandemic — and the difference between playing it on PS5 compared with the PS4 was enormous.

For one, the solid-state drive meant that loading each session was so fast that often, I was one of the first people present in the level of every new game. And things just felt smoother.

Did you play any other games?

BRIAN I spent lots of time replaying recent PlayStation 4 titles, like Final Fantasy VII Remake and The Last of Us Part II. I also immediately noticed how much smoother those games ran. The frame rates were higher thanks to the beefier graphics processor.

Also very important: The PlayStation 5 was very quiet compared with the PlayStation 4, which had such a loud fan that I always feared that it was going to explode.

This is a good time to bring up backward compatibility — the ability to play games from previous console generations — a major selling point for both consoles.

MIKE Yes! So I’m curious about your thoughts on this.

BRIAN Over all, Microsoft wins here. The PlayStation is backward-compatible with only PlayStation 4 games. The new Xboxes are backward-compatible with games for Xbox One, Xbox 360 and even some games for the original Xbox.

Backward compatibility always sounds nice to have, but in practice, nostalgia is not enough to win me over. I spend more time playing new games than I do revisiting old ones.

MIKE Totally fair. And Microsoft really doesn’t seem to have that much new for us quite yet, right?

BRIAN As we talked about in our Xbox review, we were hamstrung because Microsoft didn’t have much compelling fresh content for us to try. Most of the games we tested were made for Windows PCs or previous generations of Xbox.

On the PlayStation, Spider-Man made a stronger first impression by demonstrating the hardware’s impressive speed and graphics.

Also coming soon to PlayStation is a new God of War game, another popular franchise that is exclusive to PlayStation. Exclusives matter a lot.

MIKE One hundred percent. I am a huge fan of God of War, and I bought the PS4 largely just to play one of its top exclusive franchises, The Last of Us and its sequel, The Last of Us Part II. Sometimes I wait for a year after launch to see what games have come out and how the system fares.

BRIAN The software interface of Xbox also feels inferior. It looks like a cluttered Windows app store. In contrast, the PlayStation interface looks elegant and streamlined.

MIKE Fair. But as far as I’m concerned, it’s still wide-open territory for both Sony and Microsoft to dominate the next-gen system wars. The next year will tell us what games are must-haves and what systems host them.

But the PS5 has won me over early on in the race.

BRIAN Me, too. There are different audiences for each console. Here’s what I think it boils down to: For game enthusiasts who choose only one console, the PlayStation 5 is a safer bet for now. The hardware and software are solid, and the system looks poised to get strong games in Year 1. (If you rarely buy discs, save 100 bucks and get the digital edition, which lacks a disc drive.)

Budget-conscious people and casual gamers will probably gravitate toward the $300 Xbox Series S, which runs games at a lower resolution and can play a plethora of older Xbox titles available for a low cost.

MIKE We’re in agreement. And though the PS5 will put a dent in my wallet, I consider it a form of video-game therapy as the rest of the world is dealing with the whole “elections and the future of democracy” thing.

BRIAN There’s that pandemic, too. I haven’t seen your face in months, but I’m looking forward to seeing your avatar in PlayStation land!

Source link

55 thoughts on “PlayStation 5 Review: Sony’s New Console Is an Entertaining Behemoth

  1. I just want to tell you that I’m beginner to weblog and truly enjoyed you’re web page. Very likely I’m likely to bookmark your blog post . You really come with awesome article content. Appreciate it for sharing your webpage.

  2. Good post. I study one thing more difficult on completely different blogs everyday. It can all the time be stimulating to learn content from different writers and observe a bit of one thing from their store. I’d prefer to make use of some with the content on my blog whether or not you don’t mind. Natually I’ll offer you a link in your web blog. Thanks for sharing.

  3. My coder is trying to convince me to move to .net from PHP. I have always disliked the idea because of the costs. But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using WordPress on various websites for about a year and am worried about switching to another platform. I have heard great things about Is there a way I can transfer all my wordpress content into it? Any kind of help would be greatly appreciated!

  4. I simply want to tell you that I am just new to blogs and certainly enjoyed this blog. Most likely I’m planning to bookmark your blog . You absolutely have fantastic posts. Bless you for revealing your blog.

  5. Thanks for another informative blog. The place else could I am getting that type of info written in such a perfect approach? I have a venture that I’m just now operating on, and I’ve been at the glance out for such info.

  6. Enjoyed looking through this, very good stuff, thankyou . “All of our dreams can come true — if we have the courage to pursue them.” by Walt Disney.

  7. Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading correctly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different browsers and both show the same outcome.

  8. Just want to say your article is as astounding. The clearness in your submit is simply cool and i could think you are a professional on this subject. Fine with your permission let me to seize your RSS feed to stay up to date with approaching post. Thanks one million and please keep up the gratifying work.

  9. I simply want to say I am very new to blogging and really savored this web-site. Probably I’m likely to bookmark your site . You actually have outstanding articles. Appreciate it for sharing with us your website.

  10. Great – I should definitely pronounce, impressed with your site. I had no trouble navigating through all tabs and related info ended up being truly simple to do to access. I recently found what I hoped for before you know it in the least. Quite unusual. Is likely to appreciate it for those who add forums or anything, site theme . a tones way for your customer to communicate. Nice task..

  11. Hi! Someone in my Facebook group shared this site with us so I came to check it out. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m bookmarking and will be tweeting this to my followers! Superb blog and fantastic style and design.

  12. Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Many thanks, However I am going through troubles with your RSS. I donít understand the reason why I am unable to join it. Is there anybody getting the same RSS issues? Anybody who knows the solution can you kindly respond? Thanks!!

  13. Merci beaucoup quant à la pureté des thème mentionnés ici : on risque tout de suite s”interviewer au sujet de la juste signification des prétextes que vous citez maintenant…

  14. Hello there! I could have sworn I’ve visited this website before but after browsing through many of the posts I realized it’s new to me. Nonetheless, I’m definitely pleased I came across it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back regularly!

  15. The next time I read a blog, Hopefully it won’t fail me as much as this particular one. I mean, Yes, it was my choice to read through, nonetheless I truly believed you would have something helpful to talk about. All I hear is a bunch of crying about something you can fix if you weren’t too busy searching for attention.

  16. Hi, I think your site might be having browser compatibility issues. When I look at your blog in Opera, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up! Other then that, excellent blog!

  17. After checking out a few of the blog articles on your site, I seriously appreciate your technique of writing a blog. I bookmarked it to my bookmark webpage list and will be checking back in the near future. Take a look at my web site too and let me know how you feel.

  18. I’m impressed, I have to admit. Rarely do I come across a blog that’s both educative and interesting, and without a doubt, you have hit the nail on the head. The issue is something that not enough folks are speaking intelligently about. Now i’m very happy I found this in my search for something regarding this.

  19. We still cannot quite believe that I should often be a kind of checking important points seen on your webblog. Our family and i also are sincerely thankful with regards to your generosity too as for giving me possibility pursue our chosen profession path. Wanted you important information I purchased within your web-site.

  20. Thanks for making the honest attempt to speak about this. I believe very robust approximately it and want to read more. If it’s OK, as you gain more in depth wisdom, would you thoughts adding extra articles similar to this one with additional information? It might be extremely useful and useful for me and my friends.Susanne Seawright

  21. Right here is the right web site for anybody who would like to understand this topic. You know a whole lot its almost tough to argue with you (not that I personally will need to…HaHa). You definitely put a fresh spin on a topic that has been written about for a long time. Great stuff, just wonderful.

  22. Having read this I thought it was rather informative. I appreciate you finding the time and energy to put this information together. I once again find myself personally spending a significant amount of time both reading and leaving comments. But so what, it was still worth it!

  23. An attention-grabbing discussion is worth comment. I feel that you should write extra on this matter, it may not be a taboo subject but typically persons are not sufficient to talk on such topics. To the next. Cheers

  24. After I originally left a comment I seem to have clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now whenever a comment is added I get 4 emails with the exact same comment. Is there a way you can remove me from that service? Cheers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *