Call of Duty: Black Ops ll. Assassin's Creed 3. Tomb Raider. FIFA 13.
What do these video games have in common, hardcore gamers?
Yes, games such as these are hugely popular.
But to really enjoy playing these games, one needs a good video console. There are three consoles that have dominated the market in recent years – the Microsoft Xbox 360, Sony PlayStation 3 (PS3) and the Nintendo Wii. The question is, which of these consoles is most suited to your gaming delight?
Firstly, we can talk about the Nintendo Wii briefly, and I say briefly because that console, along with its games, are mostly geared towards the under 12 year olds.
The games are generally cartoony (Mario Brothers for example) and many are really family oriented, such as the Wii Sports Resort, with all the popular basketball, bowling, cycling, tennis etc. Not to mention the Zumba 2 Fitness Wii and the popular TV game show – The Cube. If ever you are trying to decide on your first console for your young kid, choose the Wii.
Moving on to the hardcore gaming arena, it's basically a toss up between the Xbox 360 and the PS3. Both carry the popular games, some of which are mentioned at the beginning of this article. So which one should you buy? Well, both consoles have good points and bad points.
Xbox games are a lot more fun. They are more popular with 12-17 year olds. This is not to say that 18 year old gamers do not find the Xbox 360 entertaining, but most older gamers tend to play on the PS3.
The Xbox has the Kinect – a brilliant piece of hardware for hands-free motion gaming.
It also has excellent online facilities, for everything from better servers to party / private chat, which means, if you want to, you can talk to anyone regardless of whether they are on your team, the opposition or not even playing the same game ( or playing at all). Its not free, but you get what you subscribe and pay for – excellent online facilities.
The PS3 has better graphics. It is more popular with the 18 and over crowd.
The PS3 has some amazing exclusives which alone makes the console worth buying. It can play Blu-Ray DVDs. The PS3 is the more powerful machine and you can see it in the graphics of its exclusives. Online multiplayer is free. But because it is free, the funds are not available to maintain the same high level of online services as the Xbox. Online multiplayer can be laggy and temperamental at times.
But wait, this year is proving to be an exciting year for gamers because we are all looking forward to Sony and Microsoft's next generation console releases, the PS4 and Xbox 720 respectively, later this year.
Nintendo have kicked off the next-gen console cycle early with its Wii U.
The Wii U is good for casual gaming, date night, and bored teenagers and of course, a hit for the young kids and families, but the core crowd is clearly waiting for a more immersive console gaming experience that the Xbox 720 and PS4 are touted to offer – both in terms of hardware and big-name franchises.
So which shall it be? The Wii (or Wii U) to gel the young family together; The PS3 (or PS4) for better graphics and more power, or the Xbox 360 (or Xbox 720) for better games and a better online experience?