1.16.2007

Pay Up

That little tag sure can cause a commotion. There has been a lot of back-and-forth between gamers recently over next-gen console prices. The Wii, of course, has stayed clear of most of the fanboy arguing thanks to a low $250 tag made possible by a more limited feature set.

The real issue is Sony's hefty $600 price tag for the PS3, and I, for one, support it. Now, whether the PS3 will achieve the success that SCEI Pres. Kaz Hirai and the Gang anticipate definately remains to be seen, but at least from a pricing point of view, the cost of each system for any average gamer hoping to get full functionality out of it won't change much from XBox to Playstation. Below is a brief cost summary of what it would cost Joe Gamer to buy either an XBox 360 or PS3:

XBox 360
20GB Console: $400
Extra Wireless Controllers x3: $150
HD-DVD Player: $200
XBox Live Subscription: $50
TOTAL: $800

Playstation 3
60GB Console: $600
Extra Wireless Controllers x3: $150
TOTAL: $750

Note: this is a pricing estimate for gamers, not consumers of the general public who aren't looking to spend weekly/nightly quality time with their new console. Even if many gamers don't feel they need HD-DVD capability with their XBox 360, the Live subscription alone will bring the total price back up the PS3's after 3 years of play (unless Microsoft wises up and makes the damn thing free).

For ME, and many gamers like me, the XBox 360 and PS3 are roughly the same investment. Tack onto that connectivity between PS3/PSP versus possible XBox 360/Zune, and you're looking at a bigger Microsoft tag for many gamers, who are more likely to have a PSP than a Zune.

Just keep in mind next time someone mentions the outrageous PS3 price that the XBox 360 will cost just as much for a lot of people. Let's leave the next-gen battle up to the games, not the sticker on the box.

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