As far as the newer games consoles go, the variety of games and the standard of the consoles themselves are so high it’s hard to know which one is better or which one will have the best games for your family. If you’re getting constantly nagged by the kids who want to get the latest console games then it’s best to be in the know so you can decide which console is best for your household.
The main three games consoles on the market are the Playstation 3, Nintendo Wii and Xbox 360, all of which are excellent and all of which have different features.
The Playstation 3 (PS3) has a bit of a secret weapon due to its inbuilt Blu-ray player, so the discs played on the console can hold up to 50GB of data, as opposed to DVD’s which only hold 4.7GB, so you can expect better graphics on the games. The video quality of the Blu-Ray player is also rather spectacular with 1080p HDTV – all sounds a bit technical I know, but what it really means is that your DVDs (or indeed Blu-Ray discs) will play fantastically and you’ll get a brilliant crisp picture. Stand alone Blu-Ray players are also very expensive so the Playstation 3 in itself is a bit of an investment.
The PS3 also features back compatibility so you can play PS2 and PS1 games if you have previously had a Playstation.
The downside to the PS3 is that is has fewer games when compared to the Xbox 360, its main gaming rival, and it’s online gaming network is also not as good however, for multimedia enthusiasts and gamers alike this is a great option and the Blu-Ray player is just the icing on the cake! A ‘slim’ version is also available for those wanting something less bulky.
The Xbox 360 was released a year ahead of the PS3 so it has an advantage in the range of games available, although the Playstation does have its back catalogue. The Xbox 360 has top notch graphics and audio and due to this it is very popular amongst hardcore gamers.
The online gaming network is also very active on the Xbox 360 (Xbox Live) and hands down beats the PS3. It’s also back compatible with games from the original Xbox. The large hard drive available is also very handy for caching. You can link your console to a HDTV to play games in high definition as well as connecting other devices such as MP3 players and digital cameras. The Xbox Live network will also allow you to download movies and TV shows and store them on the hard drive.
For serious gamers who want brilliant graphics and sound for their games, as well as a massive selection of games the Xbox 360 is the best option. An ‘Elite’ model is also now available with a massive 120GB hard drive.
The Nintendo Wii, although a gaming console, offers a very different experience from either the PS3 or Xbox 360. It’s easily the most interactive and family friendly console available and has a simple, but exceedingly fun, gaming system.
The big draw to the Nintendo Wii is its unique motion Wii controller that works via motion sensors in the sensor bar that you place on top of your TV. The motion sensor allows you to be involved with games like Wii Sports where you can be involved in boxing matches, play tennis and baseball amongst others. Several players can play against each other at one time so expect a mass of flailing limbs as families compete to win. The Nintendo Wii is credited with being more social than other consoles since it involves actively participating in the games and means families can play together.
Graphics-wise the Wii does not compete with the PS3 or Xbox and the graphics are fairly simplistic so it’s not one for serious gaming fans but it does have an added element of fun and inclusivity that the other consoles don’t really have.
You can also download retro console games from previous Nintendo consoles such as the NES, SNES and N64, which can then be stored on flash memory cards.
If it’s family fun that you’re looking for and you’re not worried about high spec graphics then this is the console you could be looking for!
So which one is best for you?