PS4 Launch Day Buyer's Guide: Games, Gear, And More
Posted on Thursday, November 14 @ 00:10:00 Eastern by GR_Staff
Price: $49.99 (12 Months), $17.99 (3 Months)
In case you didn't get the memo, gamers will have to pay a fee in order to play online on PlayStation 4, as Sony has decided to wall such functionality behind a PlayStation Plus subscription. Couple that with the promise of free games each month and you'd be foolish not to pay the $50 premium to gain all the benefits that PS Plus has to offer for an entire year. Heck, maintaining your Instant Game Collection for PlayStation 3 and PS Vita is reason enough to keep a subscription going. Much like how Xbox Live Gold has become virtually essential to the Xbox experience, PlayStation Plus will prove to be the same on PlayStation 4.
Extra DualShock 4
While you'll likely do the bulk of your gaming solo or with friends over the PlayStation Network, it's always a good idea to have an extra controller just in case you and a friend have a hankering for some local multiplayer, be it couch co-op or a competitive head-to-head battle. The DualShock 4 is a much-improved take on the tried-and-true PlayStation controller that has remained relatively unchanged the past three generations. Now with concave triggers, a touchpad, an improved form factor, and superior analog sticks, there's no arguing that PS4's gamepad is leaps and bounds better than the DualShock 3. Heck, some say it is even better than the Xbox One's controller.
While it may not be as powerful as Xbox One's Kinect, Sony also isn't charging you quite as much to have a camera hooked up to your console. The device boasts two super-sensitive cameras that can recognize a player's face and sign them in without any additional effort on the part of the user. It can also detect movement, allowing for motion detection and compatibility with the PlayStation 3's Move controllers. It can also respond to voice commands, so if you're into yelling at your console, the option is there. Oh yeah, and you know that glowing light bar on the top of each DualShock 4? The PlayStation Camera recognizes that too, taking note of where each player is in reference to the television. Just imagine the possibilities, and all for just $59.99!
DualShock 4 Charging Station
While you'll be able to plug your DualShock 4 controllers into the system via micro USB, the Sony-branded charging station will serve as a handy and much more convenient alternative. Simply drop your gamepad into the nifty little cradle after a long gaming session and next time you're ready to hop in, you won't have to worry about it dying on you mid-game. I don't know about you, but plugging my DualShock 3 into the PS3 felt like a bit of a hassle, especially when it was out of juice and I needed to sit awkwardly close to the television because I forgot to plug it in earlier. With the charging station, you can just get in the habit of storing your controllers on the sleek, unassuming cradle and never have to deal with that problem. Convenience is totally worth the price.
Calling the Vita a PlayStation 4 "accessory" may be a bit disingenuous, but when taking into account all the Remote Play promises to offer, it simply has to be on this list. While it may seem like an expensive peripheral, what the Vita offers is unlike anything else out there, providing incredible value for the asking price. Having the ability to play PlayStation 4 games on the device akin to what Nintendo is doing with the Wii U GamePad is an incredibly worthwhile feature, especially if you share your television with others. Let's also not forget that the Vita is a perfectly competent device in its own right, with a number of great games you can't find anywhere else, including Persona 4: Golden, Gravity Rush, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, and the upcoming Tearaway.