RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.

Posted on Jan 14th 2008 at 01:34:11 AM by (TraderJake)
Posted under Feature, PS3, PlayStation, Sony, Microsoft, 360, Modern Gaming

People have been sneering at the price of the PS3. They say it is expensive. You know, this statement is correct. However, I find it troubling that many of these people that say the Playstation 3 is overly expensive have no problem laying down the money for Microsoft's 360. I find such actions humorous. Let's analyze what I perceive as the true costs of these two systems, in terms of what they have to offer and what hidden costs lie with the system. Perhaps, we'll be enlightened after this discussion. Perhaps you'll be enraged. Chances are though that my arguments are pretty decent, and perhaps it will make take a second look at which system you ultimately end up purchasing.

Let's get this straight - the PS3 is expensive currently. The 80GB PS3 will set you back $499 stateside, which is certainly not chump change. For $100 less, you can find yourself with a castrated PS3, complete with a 40GB Hard Drive and no backward compatibility. How sad. Alright, now that we've established that the PS3 is not the cheap kid on the block let's look at the base prices of the 360. So, generally, the 360 is cheaper, but there is that damn Elite. It'll set you back $449 dollars. What special crap do you get for $449? How about a 120GB Hard Drive and HDMI Ports? Did I mention the one month Live Gold Subscription? Neat. Down the totem pole, we find the 360 Pro, priced at a high, but reasonable $349.99. The Pro comes with 20GB Hard Drive and may, if you buy new, possess an HDMI port. Nice. What about Live? Well, find yourself a Silver Subscription, because that is what you're getting. Lastly, we have the 360 Arcade, priced at about $280. No Hard Drive, Silver Live Subscription - that's too bad. But hey! You get 5 free XBLA games, and a memory card! That's better than nothing! So, now that we've revealed the base prices, let's look at the hidden costs.

So, the PS3 and 360 both have pretty good online services. Given the other service out there, I'd say they are both amazing. However, there is one fundamental difference between Xbox Live and the Playstation Network - price. Whereas the Playstation Network is free, if you wish to play online with the 360 you'll need that Live Gold Subscription. Such a description will set you back either $49.99 for one year, $19.99 for three months, or $7.99 for one month. So, if you plan on playing on Live throughout the lifespan of the console, you'll be racking up quite the charges. So, is the superb Live Service worth the added cost? You decide for youself.

This hidden cost may or may not apply to you, so if it doesn't apply to you, skip this paragraph. I really enjoy my wireless setup. My router is in another room, and thanks to the magic of 802.11 g I don't have CAT5 running to this room. So very, very nice. See, if I buy a PS3, I have a system that is wireless out of the box, but if I get the 360 I am not afforded such luxury. If I go for the official wireless adapter for the 360, I am incurred cost of $99.99. Damn, that's a lot for a wireless adapter. Hmm- I should consider that in my purchase, and if you are looking for a wireless setup and want a 360 or PS3, I hope that you'd consider that too.

There is this HD Format war going on. Ultimately, someone is going to win the war. With each passing day it looks like said victor will be the Blu-Ray front. How sad for HD-DVD. See, one thing about the PS3 is that it plays the potential victor of the HD War. If Blu-Ray does indeed win, you'll already have a Blu-Ray player if you purchase a PS3, and a decent one at that, apparently. If you own a 360, you'll need to buy a stand alone player. Of course, the tables could also be turned, and HD-DVD wins. If you own a 360, you can buy the HD-DVD drive, at a $179.99 value. So it seems that no one really wins out in the HD-War if HD-DVD wins. But, regardless, those are the facts, consider them wisely.

Content is a huge part of any system. Microsoft, has hit with some really heavy hitters, especially Halo 3. Crackdown is also good, as is Oblivion. But, let's look at Sony's content. Final Fantasy, God of War, LittleBigPlanet, Devil May Cry, Rachet, and I can go on. Even more important are the innovative titles being pumped out that are gems in itself. Calling All Cars, LittleBigPlanet, Echochrome, Afrika - dare I say that Sony is developing games more original and innovative than either Microsoft or Nintendo? I think I will.

Lastly, this hidden cost is more personal than monetary, but the 360 has a laudable failure rate. And I mean laudable in a bad way, as in it's pretty darn high. Imagine that you buy a 360, play it, and after a month or two you get the red ring of death? It's possible. Think about all the time lost playing your system. Might be a week or two before you get the system back. You might have to do alternative activities uncharacteristic of the basement gamer, like go outside. God Forbid. Don't kid yourself, the PS3 also has a failure rate, but the 360's rate of failure is apparently worse. At least, you don't really hear much about PS3 failure rates. Perhaps that is just a year away. Also, Microsoft has a new chipset out that might be more reliable. Set R to 75% rather than 50%, perhaps. But, still such facts should be brought light when considering the purchase of a PS3 or 360, and here they are.

I'm not going to tell you which system I think you should buy. You're reading RF Generation, the classic and modern video games database. You're intelligent, and you can make your own decisions. I just hope that the purchase decisions that you make are educated, and you consider all costs, monetary and personal, before you go out and buy a system. I know that I will.

Don't kid yourself, the opinions expressed in this article are those of David Murnan, Site Director of RF Generation, and his alone. They are not the opinions of the site as a whole. In fact, there is probably some staff members that are fuming right now. You might be fuming. Sorry. Perhaps the next article I write will be filled with Unicorns and Rainbows, but chances are unlikely. If you have something you'd like to say about this article, I suggest the comment box below. Until next time, sayonara!

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I'd rather wait 4-6 weeks for a replacement 360 than 4-6 months between decent PS3 games. Wink All jokes aside I'll have a PS3 someday, after 5 years I finally bought a PS2 so who knows.
You own a DS? Remember when it launched? What a barren field. Look at it now. Look at what you precious BioWare is developing for it. You love your DS, don't you.

The PS3 is a year old, give it a while, ultimately, it will be successful.
It will take some time for sure, just needs an established userbase to convince developers is all.
Of the two neither look to be stalking my wallet so far.  The 360 has the better games then the PS3 currently.  Will this change a year or two down the road?  Who knows?  That's then, this is now.  I still use a regular TV that's 480.  All the advancements they use is wasted on me.  Do I plan to change?  Not on $6 an hour.  Neither offer me what I'd like at a price I'd be willing to pay.

What with elections coming up, I'd rather people half the time learning what the people running for president are promising.  It bothers me when people buy big ticket items uneducated but it scares the $%ht out of me when they vote the same.

Also, I remember that first year the DS was out.  While it didnt have over 200 games available for it at launch (no system launches with that many) it also had great games coming out for it that show cased many of the features of the system.  Sure, some of them were extremly basic puzzle games (polaris) but some were actualy very fun.
But it's fun, cool and trendy to hate the PS3! Roll Eyes I really don't know why so many people vehemently hate it. It may not have a million great games, but it's not like you're going to buy a million games as soon as you get the system. It has enough to keep people occupied.

I had some other points about predictable replies but I only just woke up so my brain isn't working properly. Something to do with it being ugly/George Forman, not having games, Sony generally sucking, features being forced on the buyer.

The last point is one I just don't understand. No one is forcing anyone to buy anything. If you don't want those features, sod off and go elsewhere. If you want a shoddy piece of hardware with no built in extras, buy a 360. If you want an extremely cut back console with nothing but a fancy controller, go for the Wii.

By the way, Fuyukaze, the 360, and I think the PS3, can be used with a VGA cable to go to a PC monitor for high definition games. So there's no need for an HDTV as long as you have some speakers. (Just commenting on your lack of an HDTV)
Since the PS3 is finally establishing itself it is...

I was going to type up a good response on how the PS3/360 system war is actually becoming more than a 1 sided fight but then i realized Tony hadn't posted yet!!!!
I haven't bought an HDTV yet either, haven't had a reason to frankly. I've got a killer 5.1 setup and that's all I need, HD or lack thereof hasn't affected my game playing any.
The PS3 wil get there eventually. But until there are a few more price drops, and games I actually want.... I'll stick with my 360, thank you!

I'm with you there, Fuyukaze. I hate uneducated voters with a passion.

As for the current selection of PS3 games, some may say there are some great games out for the PS3, I think it comes down to a matter of taste.


I bought a cheap 27' HDTV in July. My Wii looks really nice on it in Widescreen 480p, except for the fact that only one game really tries to wow with graphics. I also though have a 5.1 receiver, and it is very nice.
This article is exactly what I've been saying since the PS3 launched. Just compare the costs to make the two systems have comparable compatibility (I know the HD DVD and the Wi Fi and "Play and Charge" things are optional, but this is just to make them on the same plane and have the same exact functionality) you'll find that the cost difference between the systems is very tiny, especially when you factor in online service.

I've always thought the included Wi-Fi adapter was one of the nicest things about the PS3. Heck, even the Wii has built in Wi-Fi. So, why not the 360? Makes no sense really.

"If Blu-Ray does indeed win, you’ll already have a Blu-Ray player if you purchase a PS3, and a decent one at that, apparently."

Actually, I've read reviews from AV magazines like Sound And Vision that have procalimed the PS3 to be the best Blu-ray player you can buy.

"If you own a 360, you’ll need to buy a stand alone player."

Or maybe MS will release their own Blu-ray drive (as they've hinted at in the past).

"Calling All Cars, LittleBigPlanet, Echochrome, Afrika – dare I say that Sony is developing games more original and innovative than either Microsoft or Nintendo? I think I will."

I've thought this for quite a while now. I've always seen Sony as the company most willing to take chances on original concepts. Just take a look at the Playstation Store vs XBLA. I'm seeing XBLA move in the direction of rehashing old games and doing things that have been done. Sony is much more willing to gamble with odd titles like LocoRoco Cocoreccho, flOw, Everyday Shooter, Echochrome, Super Rub A Dub, etc etc. Now I'm not saying XBLA doesn't have anything original, but I just see Sony reaching out to indie developers, funding them, and helping them get their games onto the PS3. That's one of the things I like most about Sony, their great support for the indie gaming community. I highly doubt Microsoft or Nintendo would consider hiring Mark Healey and Media Molecule to make a game. Read this (somewhat old) article and you'll see that XBLA is becoming more and more of a platform for traditional games:

Don't take that to mean that I don't like XBLA, because I do like it. I'd just like to see them reach out to the indie game companies more. Basically, what Microsoft should do is stop releasing a ton of old games, and instead focus on getting more people like Jonathan Blow and Klei Entertainment on board. Hopefully XNA will help with that.

I completely agree with you on the whole voting thing. That is way more important than dwelling over consoles.

It is trendy to hate the PS3. I don't understand WHY, but it is.

I'm here now! Cheesy

How much did you get TV that for?
@Tondog: $450 Cheesy
DAMN! That's not bad at all.
"For $100 less, you can find yourself with a castrated PS3, complete with a 40GB Hard Drive and no backward compatibility."

My partner at work has the 40GB PS3 and while it DOES NOT play any PS2 games it DOES play PS1 games. She said you just have to switch it from Digital to Analog.

Personally I don't hate or love one system over another. One each of the last gen - Dreamcast included are currently hooked up in my entertainment center.

Blu-Ray/ HD-DVD? Don't really care right now. Don't have the TV to take advantage of either.

Backwards compatability? Nice if it's there but I have all the old consoles so don't need that either.

Online play? I'll probably only ever use that to get some extra songs for Rock Band.

My method of console purchase has been to wait till its been out a while, has had a price drop or two and has large enough library to offer several decent titles at reasonable prices.

I recently picked up a 360. With the exception of Rock Band I haven't paid more than $20 for a game. I'm happy.

I'll do the same - when I can - with the PS3 and the Wii.

btw - very informative article Dave... thanks.
I just wanted to say that this is a pretty good write up. Nice and informative.

The trend of hating the PS3 is interesting. I dont have one (yet) but do have the 360, and I have NO idea why people would prefer it over the PS3. Again I dont have much to base my opinion on as I have only played on a PS3 for half an hour or so, but really cant stand my 360 so I would much rather have the PS3 over the 360.
Personally, I don't really think any system itself is really that great. I don't care that the PS3 has Blu-Ray; I don't plan on getting any Blu-Ray movies any time soon. I don't care that the 360 can connect to my PC and my cable and the space station; I don't need that functionality. So for me, I think that a lot about the systems could have been stripped down and still kept the system's good points, while lowering the price.

That being said, I much prefer having a 360 over having a PS3. The 360 has some console exclusives that I like: Eternal Sonata, Blue Dragon, Banjo-Kazooie 3 (isn't out yet, but still), and quite a few XBLA games. The PS3, however, has absolutely no games on it that I like that I can't get on a system I already own. There's one PSN game that I'd like (Echochrome), but I'm not dropping $600 for a downloadable game.

That's not to say that eventually the PS3 won't have good games. We're basically re-living the beginning of the PS2's lifespan right now (PS2 sucks, Sony sucks, there's no good games), and where did that end up? I do think that eventually the PS3 will have just killer games, but not yet. The only games that I know are coming out on the PS3 that I want are LittleBigPlanet and Final Fantasy Versus XIII. And Kingdom Hearts III if it ends up coming out on that.

So eventually I'll get a PS3. But nowhere in the near future.
I will get a PS3 some day. I like the 360 more because there are more games on it that I like. Blu Ray/HD DVD I can care less. I hate Wi Fi so that doesn't matter to me either. I can care less about any extras I buy a game console for one reason GAMING. And right now I think the 360 is a better GAMING console. Live is less the 49.99 a year due to all the free stuff they give away on it. AT least thats how I see it.
How's this for flamebait:

The PS3 is number 3 in sales because it has awesome games and is impossible to find in stores.

Third place is still a bronze metal. Wink
Forth or Fifth if you include the DS and PSP. LOL
At least it's more or less beating the Gamecube and GBA. Soon it may even catch the PS2, you just wait. Cool
I was going to say the PS2 as well but wasn't sure how well it is still selling.
The PS3 has some good PS2 games coming, I'm sure things will pick up for it.
@c1380: But first is gold (or silver, depending on your preference). Tongue

@Tynstar: I'm with you as far as the "buying a gaming system for gaming" thing goes. People were mad at Nintendo for not including DVD functionality in the Wii. I honestly don't care.
As far as perceived "value" is concerned, it all depends on the situation of the consumer, the types of games they enjoy playing, and how the enjoy playing them (whether offline or online). And with whom.

If you look at the PS3 library and think that it doesn't have enough quality titles to suit your tastes, why would anyone pay to have one at $399+, regardless of its feature set?

If you see the Wii or 360 libraries of games as suiting your tastes, hi-def movie playback isn't a priority to you, and you like what you see from their upcoming releases, then why wouldn't you buy one of them (or both) if you felt the time was right to do so?

Let's also consider how the consoles are bundled. If you don't mind not getting a game at all in order to get a "cheap" PS3 at $399, because you want the Blu-Ray movies, then it's more of a motivation for you to purchase one. But if you want a game or 2, that would drive your decision towards Wii (for Wii Sports), the 360 (the latest game bundle being Marvel Ultimate Alliance and Forza 2), or the full up PS3 (for Motorstorm plus the Blu-Ray movies).

For the types of games that I personally enjoy playing (Halo 3, Bioshock, Mass Effect, Dead Rising, Crackdown, Gears of War, GH2 and 3, Rock Band, Oblivion, etc.), I choose the 360. Further, if games are multiplatform on the PS3 and 360, if you pay attention to game rankings at all, EVERY ONE OF THEM is scored better overall on the 360.

And even with Dave's comparisons, if I owned no new generation consoles and was considering buying one of them today, I'd STILL choose the 360. There's just too many things about the PS3 that I don't give a damn about and not enough titles of games that I'd enjoy playing to justify a purchase of $399+. I've said it before and I'll say it again, the only time I'd even THINK about purchasing a PS3 would be when it goes below $200 for the 80gb version and has a solid library of games to choose from that appeal to me. And even then, I'd have to compare it to where the Wii is priced at that time before deciding.

I think my article shows my perspective regarding this issue. However, I want to stress that the overall point of my article is that everyone should really think out their purchases for gaming, especially on big ticket items like a PS3 or 360. I just hate statements like "PS3 is tEH ExPEnsIVE" or "XbOX is tEh gAy". Everything is perspective. If someone has an opinion, I hope they are able to defend it in an intelligible manner.

I'm impressed with this comment thread, I certainly didn't expect this to be the civilized conversation that it turned out to be. Bravo, Everyone!
In truth the only thing scaring me away from getting a 360 is the red ring of death.  Sure, they may replace the system with a "new" one but waiting 4-6 weeks just to play the newest game I recently bought just doesnt sit well with me.  I dont expect a system to last till my decendants are grandparents but damn, would 2-5 years realy be THAT far out of the question?  Atleast last the lifespan of the system's major software release.
Also, I think alot of people were shocked by the release price of the PS3.  When Sony intialy released the MSRP on it, many were shocked.  Sure, it's easy to hate Sony.  They've had a track record of having poor quality systems upon initial release.  The PS1 and PS2 being prime examples.  Later releases of both proved to be more reliable but early adopters of both system often times felt burnt by the company.  Does that mean everything Sony does is bad?  No.  It only means that Sony is going to have to do more to keep people coming back.  Perhaps the PS3 will do well, perhaps it will fail, but if anything I personaly hope it proves to be a lesson to them.  What that lesson will teach them I'm not sure though.
It is interesting for us gamer veterans who've been around for so many console wars, to see diehard fanboys and girls at their finest, and I don't seem to remember this hot and heavy of a race since the good old snes/genny days *sigh...good ol' days*

anyhoo, for my two cents, value is always subjective.  all three systems are rather different in approach.  I agree with Ninty's argument of not really competing with the other two powerhouses, the Wii is a different experience and is designed to cater to casual players and the nintendo franchise fans.  We know better than to expect Gears of War type games in the system and we make ourselves rather silly to whine about it.

More to the point of this thread, the PS3 and 360 are two different values.  If you want an HD movie player, that's a check on the Sony side.  If you are maybe/maybe not then MS gives you the option, granted at an added entry level cost.  If you want the online community features and hardcore  gamer synergy of gamerscore and universal chat, it is an optional service MS offers at a (IMHO) decent value.  If you don't care/want a more disparate but still online experience, go with PS3.  (yes, Home, I know, not out yet, so not yet a factor.  by then they may charge, or IMO not be able to support several touted features due to bandwidth restrictions.  Either way, I mean value at the current moment we are for price.)

IMHO both suck at backwards compatability.  I've seen too many corrupted ps2 save files/ game freezes/movie scenes stutter AND 360 run MVC2, Fuzion Frenzy and even Halo 1 at frame rates so low as to be nearly unplayable.  As far as I'm concerned, its crap for both systems.

the 360 reliablilty is laughable.  but MS usually (slowly) takes care of it.  PS3s go out often as well, (I work game retail, I see both sides) just not as steadfast as older 360s.  We all hope these issues will be resolved in the future (for heaven's sake I hope sony ends the ps3 life cycle  with better reliability than ps1/2.  I used to have to repair those for a living.)

360's been out longer, so more games.  both have good exclusives.  If the list of features appeal to you more for one or the other, then it is likely a better value for you.

The reasons 360 is a better value for me:
-too early/expensive to invest in HD movie library
-prefer line to wifi for reliability
-prefer rumble in controller (personally don't care for sixaxis motion control/lightweight feel
-prefered multiplatform games often seem to run better IMHO (Orange Box, Darkness, Marvel:UA) (though this goes back and forth)
-Personally prefer current 360 exclusives to ps3 exclusives (but Uncharted, Everyday Shooter, and Ratchet&Clank are great games.)
-while Nintendo, MS and Sony are all way too arrogant, I have gotten the most upset at Sony for their attitude and the disrespect they have shown the very core audience that made them so successful.  (BUT I easily recognize this as a matter of opinion.  All three have screwed us over many times.)

The final reason for my 360 preference is rather simple.  I have enjoyed more 360 games than any other home console since the SNES.  I have already completed more 360 games than either ps1, ps2, or ps3 for their current lifespan (with personal game libraries of over a hundred apiece.)  I find that I get more personal entertainment value from my 360, even after two system returns.  Would I have paid more for that?  Even at a lesser value overall, I think I would.

The PS3 is a better value for some.  Just not me.
I'm still hoping one of these systems will give me the fun I had with the Xbox1. The only problem is I feel like these new systems are trying to push everything but games on me, so it doesn't quite feel like that 'ole console you plop on the couch to play.
"I've said it before and I'll say it again, the only time I'd even THINK about purchasing a PS3 would be when it goes below $200 for the 80gb version and has a solid library of games to choose from that appeal to me."

No offense to you intended, but when someone says that it usually means they won't ever get it. Wink

"Further, if games are multiplatform on the PS3 and 360, if you pay attention to game rankings at all, EVERY ONE OF THEM is scored better overall on the 360."

BECAUSE REVIEWERS ARE BIASED AGAINST THE PS3 OMFG!!! Wink Tongue But really, some multiplatform games are rated better on PS3. Burnout Paradise, Oblivion: Game of the Year Edition, Ridge Racer 7 vs Ridge Racer 6, Unreal Tournament 3, IGN said DiRT looked better on PS3, many people say that Call of Duty 4 and Assassin's Creed looks beter on PS3 and chances are Devil May Cry 4 will end up better on PS3. Really, it all depends on the developer and what kind of effort they put into the port.

"prefer rumble in controller (personally don't care for sixaxis motion control/lightweight feel"

Just wait for the Dual Shock 3 to be bundled with the PS3 (Sony's being way too slow on this. Japan has had them for months now).

"prefered multiplatform games often seem to run better IMHO (Orange Box, Darkness, Marvel:UA) (though this goes back and forth)"

Orange Box and The Darkness actually run pretty well on the PS3, despite what many may lead you to believe. Plus with The Darkness on PS3, you get a lot more stuff to watch on the in game TVs thanks to the increased disc capacity Blu-ray offers. Cheesy
So it's rumored the the PS3 will drop to $299 (for the 40GB)...

I sort of hope it is true.
Nice, all it needs now is games and they'd have the full package.

Apparently I am getting back $300 from the feds come July. I think I may know what it is going to go to.

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