Everything You Need to Know About the Launch of a New Console Generation

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by Sam Nelson and Julianna Zimianitis

This past November, the world saw the launch of a new console generation. PlayStation and Xbox both released their new consoles, and so we’re here to give you an insight into what you should know. From launch titles to hardware specifications, here is your crash course on the next generation of game consoles.

The PlayStation 5 came out on November 12, 2020, and was released as two different editions, the regular and the digital. The standard edition costs $499.99, and has a disc slot for PS4 and PS5 games, while the digital edition costs $399.99 and does not come with a disc slot. All but eight PS4 games will be playable on the PS5, and the PlayStation Plus Collection gives a large selection of PS4 titles to PS+ members for free.

Both editions feature an “Ultra-high speed SSD” and “Integrated I/O,” which should mean incredibly fast load times for your installed PS5 games, and amazing graphics — including ray tracing, HDR technology, and 4K TV gaming (with 8k support). Along with improved graphics comes “Tempest 3D AudioTech,” which should increase immersion with directional audio in compatible games.

The Control Center allows you to quickly switch between different games and activities, which are a new feature that allows you to hop into different game modes and features. Coming with the new console is the DualSense Controller for the PS5, with a few cool features, including adaptive triggers and haptic feedback, to make playing even more immersive.

Meanwhile, the Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X both released a few days earlier, on November 10, for $299.99 and $499.99 respectively. However, both the Series S and Series X come with an alternate monthly payment plan over two years that includes an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription for the duration. The prices are $24.99 a month for the Series S, and $34.99 a month for the Series X, which adds up to $599.76 and $839.76 respectively over the course of the two years. Similar to the PlayStation 5 Digital Edition, the Xbox Series S won’t use discs, while the Xbox Series X will.

The Xbox Series X boasts full backwards compatibility for the Xbox One system, with some select titles being available from the original Xbox that debuted in 2001. One of Xbox’s major features is its brand new quick resume function, allowing the instant suspension of one game and the near instant resume of another, allowing you to pick up right where you left off. 

Each console features a plethora of titles on launch. Here’s a list of the most notable, with links and prices:  

Spider-Man: Miles Morales – PS4 & PS5 ($49.99)

Sackboy: A Big Adventure – PS4 & PS5 ($59.99)

Godfall – PS5 & PC ($69.99)

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla  – PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Series S|X, PC ($59.99 and up)

Demon’s Souls – PS5 ($69.99)

Watch Dogs: Legion – PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Series S|X, PC ($59.99 and up)

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War – PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Series S|X, PC ($59.99 and up)

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