Consoles’ moving to mobile phone type of iteration isn’t really a surprising thing. The tech giants have had the luxury of planned obsolescence for a number of years and now Sony and Microsoft want a go at it. First off let me point out that I am more than happy to see more powerful console hardware quicker. As much as i liked my Xbox 360 and PS3, it was fair to say the technology powering them was starting to creak at the end of that unusually long generation.

At present we have the PS4 and the Xbox One and in relative terms we haven’t had those machines all that long. By all accounts they have been keeping their owners happy and the console war in full swing. Now enter the PlayStation Neo now known as the PS4 Pro and the still mysterious most powerful console ever the Microsoft Scorpio. Do we really need a mid generation upgrade? Because if history is anything to go by that hasn’t always been successful.

I was watching the announcement of the PS4 Pro on a 4k TV and since then I have watched the footage of the games at their Pro settings. It did look pretty but for someone that likes to have all the newest toys I wasn’t immediately thinking this has to be a day one purchase. Simply put it wasn’t a big enough jump to make it necessary. I had the same view when i looked at Apples iPhone 7 earlier that day.

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It will be great to hear what games will support this at launch because when this all first leaked it stated that developers would need to submit an additional patch to optimise a game to PS4 Pro specs. And I know I’m about to reference rumours but by all accounts there has been a level of push back regarding this due to the added expense this will bring to studios especially the smaller ones.

Microsoft and their supporters were quick to pounce on the Pro news yesterday highlighting that the Scorpio will be so powerful it will eclipse the Pro the day it drops. But remember we won’t get Scorpio only games after Microsoft’s pledge that all games will work on the Xbox One. Both Sony and Microsoft may have made and unforced error here. The Xbox One S turned things up just a little bit to bring them back into contention for power and at the same time will no doubt retire the big black VCR box leaving the only option as the sleek S model. And as we saw yesterday the standard PS4 will have a firmware update to allow for HDR output. In my opinion they should both have just left it where it is for the time being then looked to bring in a PS5 and the Xbox 4 around 2018.

But I can air my opinion in all of this then contradict myself by saying I will most likely end up with both of these machines at some point because I need and must have the bleeding edge of console gaming in my possession. And really if these iterations are the beginning of blurred lines between console generations then we as gamers need a clearer picture of how this maps out.

How long will my PS5 Pro3 be relevant?

How long will backwards compatibility be supported by Microsoft?

Will the differences in game resolutions give me an advantage or disadvantage online?

There’s a lot of questions as to where this leads but the one concern I have is from a business standpoint. Hardware sales eat into software sales and that’s a fact folks. So if publishers start to see a decline in sales from more frequent hardware upgrades will there be fewer games or will this give them the go ahead to raise the base price of software releases?

Thanks for hearing out my opinion and for the record I have no ally in this console war, I play what I want where I want.

David Birch (@remedylive)

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