Whether you’re buying a games console for the very first time, or looking to try something new, it can be tricky to know which console you should choose. We’ll talk you through the flagship consoles, what makes them tick and the games you can expect to play on them.
Microsoft are known for building some of the most powerful consoles, and with the Xbox Series X, they’re not resting on their laurels. Boasting true 4K gameplay at 120 frames per second, and a lightning fast SSD that makes load screens a thing of the past, this console really does pack a punch.
And if you’re not fussed about new tech and just want to play the latest games, the Xbox Series S lets you jump into next generation gaming for a little less.
The PS5 is the latest edition in Sony’s iconic PlayStation series, and with its out there design, it’s shaping up to be the biggest leap forward yet. This epic new console lets you explore new worlds in native 4K, and with the built in SSD, you’ll be able to jump between games in seconds.
Sony have also revamped their DualSense wireless controller for the PS5. With adaptive triggers, you’ll feel the pull of the bow and the squeeze of the pedal, bringing you closer to the action.
The PS5 is available in two options, a cheaper digital option where games are purchased and downloaded from PlayStation’s online store, and a standard model with a physical 4K Blu-Ray™ disc drive.
Fun for the whole family, Nintendo have mastered consoles that are just as fun played solo as they are shared with family and friends. With the Switch, you get a console that can be experienced on your living room TV, as well as on that long commute.
The Nintendo Switch also comes in a cheaper Lite version, which is a completely handheld console.
A console is nothing without great games to tuck into, and while there are plenty of third party titles that can be enjoyed across all consoles, each console also offers their own exclusive games.
You’ll be able to play all the biggest blockbuster franchises such as Call of Duty, FIFA, Grand Theft Auto and Assassins Creed on Xbox. But as well as the third party big hitters, Xbox is the exclusive home to the Halo series, Gears of War and Forza Motorsport, so there’s plenty of stunning games to whet your appetite.
Sony have taken exclusive games to the next level, with some of the best titles available only on PlayStation consoles. Along with all the third party games that are cross platform, Sony boast the legendary Unchartered and Last of Us franchises as well as Insomniac’s web slinging Spider-man series. That’s just the tip of the iceberg really with the God of War games and the recently released samurai epic Ghost of Tsushima also completely exclusive to PlayStation. And with the PS5, there will be plenty more to look forward to.
With Nintendo, you’ll find many, but not all third party games available on the Switch. But, a lot of the titles Nintendo are known for, you won’t find anywhere else. From the iconic Super Mario games and the beautiful world of Zelda, to the wildly addictive Animal Crossing, some of the most fun you can have on a console is exclusive to Nintendo.
With an amazing library of games spanning all console generations, it used to be frustrating to learn that your new console couldn’t play the classics from your older model. Now however, most new consoles come with some level of backwards compatibility, which means all your favourites from a previous console generation can be enjoyed on your new model. Better yet, a lot of next gen consoles will actually up the quality of those old games, giving them a new lease of life.
From extra wireless controllers, charging docks for your controllers and headphones that put you in the heart of the battle, there’s a range of accessories that’ll complete your gaming experience.
You’ll usually get one controller with your Xbox, so if you want to gather your friends round for some multiplayer action, picking up an additional controller or two is a good place to start. You’ll also want a charging dock to power up your controllers when you’re not playing, and if you’re a fan of online gaming, a solid headset is a must.
Microsoft have also worked with Seagate to create an additional 1TB SSD drive that you can plug into the back of the console. This will give you double the amount of space to store your favourite games with the same superfast performance.
There are a host of accessories you can get for your PlayStation console. Extra DualSense wireless controllers will let you challenge your friends, and a charging dock will keep them fuelled up for when you need them. Sony also have dedicated headsets for their consoles as well as a handy media remote, which makes streaming and browsing the console’s smart features incredibly easy.
For the Switch you can get all the essentials like extra controllers, charging docks and headsets. You can also get a steering wheel attachment for your controller to give you the edge in Mario Kart. It’s also worth picking up a protective case for when you take your Switch out into the world.
With the success of subscription based streaming services like Netflix and Amazon, it was only a matter of time before the gaming world got in on the action. With Xbox’s already popular GamePass and PlayStation’s PS Now, gaming subscription services are now a reality. Why have a pile of discs wasting space when you can have immediate access to a wide range of your favourite games spanning all console generations? Now it’s as simple as plug in and play.
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This depends on what you want from it. If you like playing the biggest games solo or online with friends, then an Xbox or PlayStation is for you. But, if you want something that can be shared with the family, or a console that can be played at home and out and about, then you should get your hands on a Nintendo Switch. Shop now.
Games consoles are one of the only ways to enjoy the biggest and best games out there. Whether you’re exploring new worlds, hitting the racetrack, or owning the battlefield with friends, video games are one of the truest forms of escapism. It doesn’t really stop there either, some consoles also have a lot of the features you would expect on a Smart TV, giving you a library of apps and streaming services to enjoy. They really are the best tech for all things entertainment.
Most games and especially the big blockbuster titles are cross platform. But if you’re not sure, the games case will usually say whether it’s exclusive or not on the front.
The latest consoles from Microsoft are the Xbox Series X and the Xbox Series S.
The PS5 is available from 19th November 2020.
While the PS5 may be the latest console from Sony, the PS4 has definitely still got a lot to give, with many of the latest games working just fine on the console. However if you’re looking for a console for years to come, then you’ll enjoy better value choosing the next gen PS5 console. Shop PlayStation.
While all consoles are child friendly with loads of fun and whacky games to enjoy, the Nintendo Switch is best suited for little ones. With a wide range of simple platform games available, it’ll keep them busy for hours. Plus, the Nintendo Switch also has a portable mode, meaning it’s perfect for those long road trips. Shop Nintendo.
With wireless controllers pretty much standard across all consoles, the first accessory you’ll want is a charging dock to keep your controllers powered. If you’re a fan of online gaming then you’ll also want a decent headset to chat with friends. Shop now.
Consoles are fairly simple to set up, usually with only a few wires to plug in and then just a quick system set-up before you can jump into the action.