The console war is one of the best/worst experiences for gaming consumers. Best for potential games, terrible for our pockets. Some are going to end up with both the new Xbox and the Ps4 (and a dusty Wii U), some have already decided to stay loyal to Sony or Microsoft, but there are many actually waiting to see what console offers the most potential before making the call.
In the previous battle, I was an early adopter for the PS3, but not so early that I paid $600 for the console. I got the unicorn-like backwards compatible 60gb console and rode the successes of Uncharted, God of War, and other exclusives in every console argument. When Mass Effect came out, though, I purchased a used 360 from a friend to play the franchise. Over a year later it become multi-platform and I gave that used Xbox to a friend and continued right on with my Sony fandom like nothing ever happened. The continued improvement of the Ps3, improved online community, and engaging exclusive titles has convinced me that the PS4 will be the console for me this upcoming round.
Sony came out of the gate early (notice I've already discounted the Wii U....*shrug*) and offered up some pretty awesome ideas. The goals are lofty and I won't believe them until I see them, but I have hope. Microsoft is gearing up for its big reveal on May 21st. The fanboys are holding their collective breaths, but there are a few hurdles. Xbox really needs an answer for Blu-ray, should find a way to increase the value of Live vs Playstation Plus in order to ride the wave of online multi-player success, and shoot down the DRM license rumors.
But could Sony put the nail in the coffin early?
Sony has done all the right things thus far: Appeal to a growing online community with features like live streaming, continued support for the Vita via PS4 title streaming, and a solid round of early announced titles (Diablo 3, Killzone: Shadow Fall, Infamous: Second Son, and new racing IP Driveclub to start). I was kidding about Diablo 3 being solid by the way. Rumors have it that there's an obvious power gap between the consoles as well, but lets hope for Halo fans' sake this theory doesn't hold much weight.
We can't place the early potential for success all on the Sony team. Oh no. Microsoft and Nintendo both have done well to set themselves behind by a good bit, Nintendo nearly grabbing their own shovel with their lack of games for the (my opinion) poorly crafted Wii U and also canceling their E3 conference this year (Carl Daniel, another writer for The Koalition thinks Nintendo can still win). I'm not fully informed on some of the politics between developers/publishers and such, but Bungie was a major force for Microsoft much like Naughty Dog for Sony and losing them as an exclusive company hurts. I honestly think an original of the caliber of upcoming Destiny would have made me second guess my choice, but I'll be able to experience that title elsewhere. Nevertheless, their big reveal hasn't happened and the new Xbox may have a new IP under its sleeves. Microsoft may just come out of the gates with an incredible launch lineup, new model for Live that has advantages much like Playstation Plus, etc etc.
I don't think they will though.
They won't show up empty handed, we know this, but they have some serious miles to cover. On top of that, E3 is around the corner and Sony will be able to respond soundly to whatever the May 21st conference has in store. We all remember the effect the 360 had by coming out early and at a better price point. What if Sony preemptively attacks with a late summer release date and crazy price? Its a stretch, but stranger things have happened in the world of gaming.