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The holidays are just around the corner, and that means huge Black Friday savings. If you're in the market to pick up Sony's PlayStation 4 console you'll be able to grab a console and a free game for just $299.
Some retailers like Sam's Club are actually starting holiday sales as early as next week, offering up great savings across the board. Sam's has a great deal on a PS4 bundle with a free game for just $299, shaving off a clean $50 off the console's recent permanent price drop.
The deal was spotted on the Cheap Ass Gamer forums by an actual Sam's Club employee. The poster also notes that the free game is likely the one included with the PS4 bundles, meaning you probably won't be able to pick a free game off the shelf. Sony offers a number of console bundles including Batman Arkham Knight, The Last of Us: Remastered, Destiny: The Taken King, and the Uncharted: Nathan Drake Collection bundle.
If you've been waiting for a great deal on an Xbox One, Amazon is currently offering the Microsoft 2015 Holiday bundle, where you get the 1TB Xbox One and four games for $400.
On top of the 1TB Xbox One console, the four games in question are Gears of War: Ultimate Edition and Rare Replay. In the bundle, you'll receive a download code for Ori and the Blind Forest, as well as another free game of your choice - except for Halo 5: Guardians or Assassin's Creed: Syndicate.
Amazon Prime members get an additional $5 discount, knocking the price down to $395. If you want to get the Kinect bundle, you can do that too. The 500GB Xbox One bundle includes the Kinect, with digital copies of Dance Central Spotlight, Kinect Sports Rivals, and Zoo Tycoon.
This deal runs up until 11:59pm PT on Saturday, October 31.
Sony's PlayStation 4 has traditionally dominated console sales charts over Microsoft's Xbox One and Nintendo's beleaguered Wii U, and that trend shows no signs of slowing. At Paris Games Week 2015, a Sony exec let slip that the PS4 still reigns supreme in terms of global consumer adoption and has overshot the 25 million sales milestone by a margin.
"I don't think there's a better time to buy into PlayStation - PS4 particularly. Our installed base now is well over 25 million," said Sony exec Michael Denny in an interview with Games Industry Biz. "That gives us a massive community of gamers, supported by a lot of new community features. We've got great games out there, more coming through. We're looking forward to 2016, it's an exciting time."
Interestingly enough, VG Chartz notes the PlayStation 4 has sold 25.45 million units worldwide, but Sony probably has more specifically updated sales data on-hand. In light of the stalwart sales, the Japanese console-maker bumped its fiscal year PS4 projections from 16 million units to 16.5 million units sold.
The current generation consoles are so underpowered it's not funny, where Microsoft and Sony feel fine offering gamers 720p-900p gaming and calling it "next-gen". Well, it's not. The current generation consoles are powered by an APU that isn't up to scratch, especially in this era of 4K TVs and 4K gaming.
Well, Xbox boss Phil Spencer has come out firing on Twitter saying that Microsoft and the Xbox team are "100% committed to making it [the Xbox One] our best console generation ever". But someone asked him about the next-gen Xbox, to which Spencer teased: "I fully expect there will be [a next-gen Xbox]".
Personally, I think the next-gen Xbox needs to nail 1080p 60FPS at an absolute bare minimum. We're going to be fully wrapped in the world of VR gaming by then here on PC, so even 1080p 60FPS isn't enough for next-gen gaming. In reality, we need 4K 60FPS+ in order to keep up with VR - of which I'm sure Microsoft is working on Xbox VR, which has been teased before. That will require 2560x1440 at 90FPS+, which is absolutely impossible for the Xbox One right now.
Despite being more powerful than Microsoft's Xbox One console, Sony's PlayStation 4 leaves much to be desired; its Jaguar APU is quite outdated and matches up to yesteryear PC builds in terms of performance. But it looks like Sony might consider refreshing the PlayStation 4 with new hardware to meet and go beyond the 1080p 60FPS standard.
In a recent interview with Japanese publication 4Gamer, Sony exec Masayasu Ito said that the PS4's x86 architecture opens up the possibilities for expanded hardware in the future. "The PS4's x86 architecture makes the console forward compatible, making it possible to incorporate performance enhancements required at any time," Ito said, answering the query on a possible enhanced PS4.5 console. "[As such], the possibility of a high-performance version of PS4 is an idea that can be considered."
It's been no secret that consoles have always lagged behind PC's in terms of hardware, and consoles traditionally ship with outdated hardware. It'd be great to see the PS4 adopt a dedicated GPU solution to help significantly boost performance, but that would likely compromise the console's unified 8GB GDDR5 RAM system and call for a complete overhaul.
After dropping the price in the US by $50, Sony has announced that it has dropped the price of its console across the world. The 500GB PlayStation 4 will be available for €349.99 in Benelux, France, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain.
In the UK, the 500GB PS4 will cost £299.99 while Down Under it will drop to $479.95. In Germany, the new price stamp is €349.95 while it will sell for AED1399 in the United Arab Emirates. There are also various console bundles to choose from, with the Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection bundle, a limited edition Star Wars Battlefront bundle, the Call of Duty: Black Ops III limited edition bundle, The Last of Us Remastered bundle, a Military Appreciation bundle, a limited edition Destiny: The Taken King bundle and a Batman: Arkham Knight limited edition bundle.
The bundles are of course worth more, where in the US they vary from $349.99 to $449.98.
It looks like Sony had another great month in the US, with September being the fifth consecutive month that the PS4 has been the best-selling console.
Sony wrote in a statement: "As we kick off the holiday season, we would like to take a moment to thank fans for making PlayStation 4 the best-selling console and #1 in software sales in September. PlayStation 4 was the number one console for NBA 2K16, Madden NFL 16, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain and FIFA 16. Including the highly successful limited edition console bundle, PS4 also led retail sales for Destiny: The Taken King".
The Japanese gaming giant continued: "It was also a very strong month for PlayStation Network with September being the highest grossing month in PlayStation Store history. From PlayStation exclusives like the recently launched Uncharted Collection to partnerships with Call of Duty: Black Ops III and Star Wars Battlefront, we are committed to our community and to making PlayStation the best place to play this holiday".
It was October 1985 when the original Nintendo Entertainment System came out, which feels like so long ago because it was - the NES turned 30 years old today.
Nintendo's first foray into the lounge room happened, with the big introduction and the start of Mario Bros., happened on October 18, 1985. Nintendo launched the NES with 17 games, with most of them not being very memorable, except for Super Mario Bros. of course. Do you remember playing on your NES? Did you get one on day one? Did the games need day one patches? Did the console itself require constant firmware upgrades? Yeah.
We know that Sony is ahead of Microsoft in this generation of consoles, but to hear it directly from the boss of Xbox feels weird. During the 2015 GeekWire Summit, Xbox boss Phil Spencer had some choice words on the future of gaming, Microsoft's competition with Sony and Nintendo, and more.
When asked about whether Microsoft could beat Sony with the current generation consoles, Spencer said: "You know, I don't know. You know, the length of the generation... They [Sony] have a huge lead and they have a good product. I love the content, the games line-up that we have. One thing that probably I didn't realize as much as I should have when I started in this role was the impact that the launch had on our team here in Redmond, the Xbox team".
So what's Microsoft's goal with the Xbox One? For once, the company isn't trying to beat Sony, as they just want to reach as many consumers as possible with their platform. Spencer continued: "Every time I sit down and I do a product review, mostly every time, the team comes in with surprise and delight around the momentum that they have, more than I'm able to add. And when I see that transformation of a team that's questioning the leadership of the organisation to a team that's motivated by the customers that we have and their ability to delight them, I see a team that's making amazing progress. [Backwards compatibility] was one".
In a move that surprised absolutely no one, Sony has officially dropped the PlayStation 4's price tag to $350 in an effort to continue its reign of console dominance.
The Japanese console-maker announced the news in an update on the PlayStation Blog, where it reveals that the new permanent $350 price will take effect on October 9 in the United States and Canada. Sony also revealed a number of new bundles for the holidays, but the $350 flavors will come with the standard 500GB HDD.
"If you haven't made the jump yet, and you're starting early on your holiday wish list, I have good news - we're dropping the price of the PlayStation 4 system in the U.S. and Canada," Sony said in the update. "Starting tomorrow, October 9, you'll be able to pick up PS4 starting at the new price of $349.99 USD / $429.99 CAD (MSRP)."