It’s getting quite close to the mid-November launches of the new consoles, isn’t it? It keeps surprising me that we are so nearly at the point where we are going to get our hands on them – that is, if we can get an order in… In previous Let’s Chat articles, Ashley and I have discussed the PS5 and the Xbox Series X/S, but so far we haven’t shared our final choices of which console we are each planning to get first, which launch games we are most excited for, and other details related to the way we see the consoles performing over the years. That changes now, though; this Let’s Chat is where we divulge that information. Furthermore, I am going to include quite a few videos that have been released that show certain aspects of the consoles, so this article may be an efficient resource for having a watch of those in one place! Strap in!
William Robinson: Right, Ash; we haven’t definitively debated our choices of either Series X/S or PS5 in a Let’s Chat – until this one! So, with around a month until the launch of either, I thought we should do a summary piece to get our overall thoughts on which we are prioritising. Then, we can go more into launch games and future prospects. I guess the main point to start on is whether you’ve decided?
Ashley Harrison: I’m fairly sure I’m 99.9% decided at this point; almost definitely going to be switching over to Xbox for the first time in my life and picking up the Series X. As I’ve mentioned in previous Let’s Chats, Microsoft have shown more that entices me to their console than Sony have, and the added benefit of Game Pass was the final nail in the coffin personally.
WR: I’m quite torn on my decision, but PS5 is the way I am going. Microsoft has seriously impressed me with the new features and functionality – in my opinion, several of the decisions Sony has made have been positive influences from Microsoft. Yet, even past the games – which we’ll discuss more in a bit – the ecosystem of PlayStation is one I am reluctant to avoid, as I know that is where many of my friends are going to be playing. The implementation of cross-play can soften this, and is becoming more and more prevalent, but it isn’t industry-wide. Has this been an issue for you when making your choice?
AH: Honestly, not really. I’m not in the slightest bit an online gamer so it’s never really bothered me which console friends play on, and besides – even if I did, I know I have a decent chunk of friends on both consoles, so I’d have at least one person to play with if I ever felt like playing online.
WR: That’s fair, our personal situations are always going to affect our choices in different ways. I am possibly going to get a Series X down the road, though! If I was less of a collector, Game Pass would appeal more to me; as it is, it is a service I find to be incredible value for those less invested in physical media. No doubt it is a key selling point, and may be a reason why Sony has put together the PlayStation Plus Collection as a sort of mirror to it. Do you reckon you’re exclusively going to stick to Game Pass for your gaming, or are you going to mix it with other purchases?
AH: Whilst I’m going to be using Game Pass undoubtedly as my main source of games to play, there’s definitely going to still be first-party games I pick up physically such as Everwild, or third-party offerings such as Watch Dogs Legion and Cyberpunk 2077 that won’t be released on Game Pass, at least not at launch. Part of that is because of the insane value of Game Pass (especially if the 3 years of Ultimate for £75 trick still works come release), but also because I’m fast running out of space to store physical games. Whilst I’ve always been a physical collector up until now, I think it’s time to shift to digital, at least for the majority of games.
WR: Are you still gonna be susceptible to Collector’s Editions aha? Yeah that is understandable, collecting does take up space. You’ll also be saving a lot of money! Are those two former games you mentioned your predicted launch playing, or are there any others you have your eye on?
AH: Honestly, it depends on the Collector’s Edition haha! The only one I’ve actually bought this generation was The Last of Us Part II, before then instantly realising how much of a mistake that was given the size of the box that it came in haha – that’s taken up way more room than I was expecting, and it’s not like I can throw it out. Watch Dogs Legion and Cyberpunk 2077 are definitely two of the games I’m gonna be playing, but whether they’re my launch games or not? I’m not sure. Since I don’t have a preorder for a Series X console, I’m assuming GAME will have some but only in a bundle, so that’s already gonna be a high price, plus the cost of Game Pass. I don’t think that after that I’ll be able to afford both!
WR: Yeah that Edition for The Last of Us Part II is quite comprehensive! OK, that’s a point to get onto; erm, we may have our choices, but we haven’t actually ordered them yet… I got close with GAME, but it was out of stock after I went through Checkout. Are you just waiting, or have you had any close calls? I’m getting to the point now where I am not sure getting one at launch is gonna happen.
AH: I was awake for the GAME pre-orders when they went live at 8am. I loaded up and went to log-in, saw “Estimated wait time: Over an hour” and was just like “screw this, it’s 8am, I’m off back to sleep.” I tried getting in for the Curry’s preorders too, and had the same problem, so at the minute I’m just chancing it and hoping I can pick one up come launch day.
WR: You gonna try and go in-store? I guess that is an option… I mean, if I don’t get one at launch, it isn’t the end of the world.
AH: I think it’s going to be the only option honestly, they usually have extra stock after pre-order stock allocations, but they’re sold in forced bundles with a game or an extra controller or something. I’ll see if I can get a Series X + Cyberpunk 2077 or Watch Dogs Legion bundle, but if not it’s not the end of the world like you say. I still have such a massive backlog of PS4 games that I should really work through.
WR: Yeah, I have so many games I am planning to play! There is an appeal to being part of that conversation at launch though, right? So, I may go on an expedition to try and find a PS5 on the day. There may well be a bundle with the new Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales game, which I am excited for. I am personally not completely sold on Cyberpunk and Watch Dogs yet, I feel they could be brilliant but also could slip into mediocrity – the shooting mechanics in Cyberpunk especially. I’ll say that the idea of playing through that game without any killing is one I am fascinated by.
AH: Me and Pacifist runs really don’t do well in games, so playing the whole of Cyberpunk 2077 without killing anybody is 100% not something I’ll be doing. Honestly though, I just wanna go terrorize London as a Granny more than anything. As I’m fairly sure I said after the Ubisoft Forward Let’s Chat, the idea of that is just so absolutely insane to me that I’m completely sold on it. Plus, having now seen MrBeast and Kelsey from Buzzfeed playing a pre-release version everything else about it definitely looks like my kind of game.
WR: The whole hacking side of Cyberpunk seems way better than the shooting, so I hope I can focus more on that and have a fun time. For Watch Dogs, roaming a digital London could be awesome, but I am not yet convinced, so reviews and word of mouth may be the deciding factor for me on whether or not I purchase it with so many other games to play, such as Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity on Switch. I imagine there may be a surprise hit too, in the vein of Resogun on PS4 at launch – perhaps Bugsnax shall be that breakout success?
AH: In case you haven’t seen, you can go here for MrBeast playing it, here for Kelsey, and also here for Jacksepticeye (additionally, the latter is embedded below). Hopefully those give you an idea and help you form a better opinion than just the trailers Ubisoft have released so far. Honestly though, with Bugsnax also releasing on PS4, I’m not too bothered about missing that at launch for the PS5, because I’m still going to be able to play it anyway. Hopefully, the pre-orders for it go up sooner rather than later.
WR: Going beyond launch, which parts of these consoles are you most excited to see? Considering we didn’t know Game Pass would be introduced back when Microsoft launched the One, who knows how the industry may develop. You mentioned Everwild; in the next few years, which are the games you are most anticipating?
AH: As mentioned in previous Let’s Chats, Rare’s Everwild and Image & Form’s The Gunk are my two most anticipated, and with both being Xbox exclusives, that has definitely helped to sway my decision. Looking further ahead than that though, definitely The Elder Scrolls VI, even if I’ve admittedly never played a game in that series before, a glaring omission from my gaming resume. Whilst it hasn’t been officially confirmed yet, you have to believe that Forza Horizon 5 is coming relatively soon too.
WR: Ah yes, the potentially-exclusive The Elder Scrolls! Amazing to imagine that, yet it is a distinct possibility. It’ll be fascinating to see how the consoles stack up against each other in terms of sales and reception over the years. Sony still has that edge of exclusives, for example with Horizon Forbidden West on the way. Microsoft need their announced exclusives to be hits and provide more evidence that they can deliver to a high level. Fable is one I am very curious to follow.
AH: I don’t think there’s any doubt for me that The Elder Scrolls VI won’t be exclusive to Series X/S and PC, given how much money Microsoft spent on the acquisition of Bethesda. Honestly I don’t know how the hell I forgot Fable either, that’s one of the ones I’m most looking forward to. I’ll put that down to there only being a short CGI trailer shown for it so far and nothing else.
WR: I honestly reckon that the moves Microsoft is making, such as the Bethesda acquisition, are going to lead to Series X/S being very popular, with the PS5 also doing very well, and the two consoles ending up quite similar in terms of sales. That’s my prediction, anyhow – if I put you on the spot, how do you see the years panning out?
AH: I think the first few years are almost definitely going to see Microsoft take the lead in terms of console sales, then PS5 selling much better as Sony starts releasing its exclusives onto the platform. Come the end of the generation, I can see both consoles being relatively equal sales-wise; I don’t expect there to be anywhere near as wide a gap as there has been with this generation.
WR: Yeah, I agree that there is going to be more of a balance. Which is remarkable from Microsoft, given how far behind they have been. Then again, this is us making predictions, so watch us be completely wrong right?
AH: Oh, we’re almost certainly going to be wrong, neither of us are analysts or anything haha! I think for the health of the industry, a competitive generation sales-wise will definitely be needed – I don’t think the industry could take another dominant performance from Sony.
WR: Speaking of said industry; your opinions on the changes going on, such as the price increase of games? It isn’t that surprising, but still, £59.99 and up is a jarring increase, even if when accounting for inflation it is perhaps to be expected. I’m sorta okay with it until the point when these games have microtransactions on top. Then it is egregious.
AH: £59.99 and upwards is another reason I’m going Series X with a Game Pass subscription. Working only 25 hours a week at minimum wage like I am currently really doesn’t leave all that much disposable income, so with the price increase I’m definitely going to have to be more conservative in terms of buying games.
WR: Is there any aspect of Series X you reckon should be changed or added to in the future? I mean, for PS5, I’d like to see them properly do their own Game Pass-style system.
AH: I can’t think of anything honestly. Between Game Pass and Backwards Compatibility with all 3 of Microsoft’s previous consoles, Series X really does have everything I could want already built into the console on Day 1.
WR: As for PS5, you reckon you’ll ever get one?
AH: Further down the line, I think there’s no doubt I’ll pick one up. Sony’s exclusives are just too good to miss. And besides, it’s not like I can play The Last of Us Part III on an Xbox console, is it?
WR: Don’t even joke Ashley. Don’t even.
AH: Who says that I’m joking?
WR: So, essentially, we’ve worked out that in the long run, we’re each going to get Series X/S and PS5, just in different orders and timescales. I find it amusing that our choices are essentially that we’re choosing to get the two, aha!
AH: It’s definitely going to be an interesting generation with both of us opting for a different console; at least we can recommend hidden gems we’ve found when for when we both decide to pick up the other console.
WR: Yeah, we’ll hopefully make a great complimentary combo and be able to cover the two ecosystems well. No conflict, we’re all gaming fans! I wonder if Switch soon releases an upgrade?
AH: Haven’t there been rumours of a “Switch Pro” model since literally before the console launched? It would not surprise me at all if we see a mid-generation revision capable of 4K, hopefully capable of upscaling previously released games too, like the PS4 Pro. I’d LOVE to play stuff like Super Mario Odyssey, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, and Octopath Traveller in 4K.
WR: I’d be in for that! Nintendo is my console priority personally. The rumours have indeed been going for a while; who knows when it may happen, if at all. Nintendo seems to very much be on their own path, which is fine. I don’t see them being pressured into an upgrade by the other consoles.
AH: Nintendo is my 2nd choice honestly, usually behind that generation’s PlayStation console. I can’t see that changing with Series X honestly though, that’s still gonna be my primary console.
WR: We’re almost set for our new consoles! We’ve got our choices. We have games we are excited for. Just one issue; we haven’t managed to order them yet. Slight issue.
AH: Yeah, that’s definitely the biggest issue of all. Can’t really get excited for it if you can’t even find one to play.
WR: We’ll find them! Even if we have to – shudder – go outside to do it. This Let’s Chat is a bit shorter than the other ones – that is to say it isn’t 4000+ words – but it’s a great way to establish where we’re standing. We’re really close to the launches!
AH: I think the fact that we didn’t even get price reveals until like 2 months before the releases of the consoles definitely made it seem further from the consoles than we are, with less than a month to go now until both release.
WR: Ultimately, the top end of the pricing is a stalemate, putting further emphasis on the features of the consoles themselves. Unless you have any other topics to raise, we’ll leave it there!
AH: Nope, I think we’ve covered basically everything here! It’s nice having a short Let’s Chat, rather than the 4,000+ words ones we’ve done previously like you mentioned. Here’s hoping we both manage to find the console we’re wanting on release day!
WR: I hope the search goes well for you! Until the next one; thanks for joining me!
AH: Bye man!
You can read more Let’s Chat here! It’d be awesome to hear the consoles people are planning to get, too; you can let us know in the comments! Have an awesome day!