On the jump from PS2 to 360
Posted on Thursday, January 10 2008 @ 04:23:51 PST
Well, I've been playing my 360 for a while now, and I've deduced that the 360 is not a complete triumph over the aging black console. There are several things that the 360 does not do well (or at all) that the PS2 is more than capable of doing.
For the first thing, the PS2 and 360 are both competing for social activities. Although the 360 does have the advantage with the wireless controllers that can remotely turn the console on and the superior Xbox Live, the PS2 has a lot more social games to it, such as the Guitar Hero and Buzz! series. Plus, the online aspect of the PS2 doesn't come with a surcharge, unlike Live. You don't have to keep paying to keep playing.
Which brings me to my next point: the games. The Xbox 360 has a substantially diminished lineup compared to the PS2, but that is to be expected coming from a relatively new console. If what I have heard about Microsoft's involvement in every game released on the console, that could be the main problem of the line-up. Sony doesn't seem to care a lot about what gets released on it's console, meaning you have to wade through a lot of gaming 'leavings' to get to the good stuff when browsing through items on sale. But, it also means that you get more surprising successes on the console before Microsoft realises that it's a good game and gives the Xbox release the go-ahead.
Personally, I like Sony's approach to the problem. Sure, you may get some pretty crap games but they're at least options. They may be painfully obvious options that pretty much everyone bar the eternally perverted would pass on but they're still options. Options are good. If I wanted a good flight combat game on the 360, I am pretty much limited to Ace Combat 6 whilst if I wanted one on the PS2, I could choose between Ace Combat 04, Ace Combat: Squadron Leader and Ace Combat: The Belkan War, not to mention several other under-the-radar games that have gone unjustly ignored by critics.
The controllers aren't that much different, actually. If you swapped the D-pad with the left analogue stick, removed the central Xbox button and exchanged the triggers for regular buttons, the 360 controller would be exactly the same as the PS2 one. The wireless 360 controller does have the advantage with the remote console activation feature, but it comes at a cost of battery power. 360 owners will almost always need a battery charger with batteries for each controller they have. Not only that, but the triggers on the 360 controller seem custom-bred for FPS games, which (due to Microsoft's immense investment in the Halo series) are not that common on the console. There may be more in America than down here in New Zealand, but seeing as how I won't be able to get my hands on any of the American games, the criticism stands.
Now, it seems to me that Microsoft, with the 360, is putting all their eggs in one basket as it were with their Halo franchise. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but if you're not into the games, then you're not really into the console. The games may look better, but unless you're virtually superficial, that won't tide you over.
From an offline perspective, the PS2 trounces the 360 hands down for its low maintenance costs, greater lineup of titles covering a broader range and lack of further costs.