I’ve never spent too much time on the notion before but I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m a bit of a Sony loyalist. The original PlayStation was my first console so I suppose nostalgia has a lot to do with it, but the only times I’ve ever been properly lured by Microsoft were for Fable II on the Xbox 360 and a timed exclusive Tomb Raider collector’s edition (yes I know, I’m a sucker). Suffice to say, unless there’s a Fable 4 on the horizon (and there’s good reason to believe it could be, which if so, please take my money), nothing about next generation Xbox has really caught my attention so far.
In contrast, I was enormously excited about Sony’s PlayStation 5 reveal. Like, I bought snacks for this. Sony had hyped up this event so much, I think most of us thought there was no way, despite the company making it clear in all promo material this was to be purely a games presentation, that we weren’t going to get at least a glimpse of the box. And sure enough, after the biggest tease sequence ever featuring a school of black microns morphing into various formations (props to the graphic designer on this by the way), we did.
It’s a striking piece of kit but also, a bit weird. Dare I say, even a little bit ugly in places? But in the same way you might look at a modern piece of architecture (like the Barclays Centre, which the console has already drawn comparisons to) and go “huh, fair enough, I see what you were going for,” you can admire the artistry. But isn’t that true of most PlayStation consoles? On paper, the PS2 doesn’t sound like an item you’d want as the focal point of your shelf – a chunky black rectangle, with another chunky black rectangle stuck on top and huge grills looping around the side – but it’s a strong aesthetic that’s stood the test of time.
Me? I love the look of this. It’s going to stick out like a LED-pulsing sore thumb and loom over every other device in my TV cabinet like the Stark Tower block that it is, but that’s sort of what I’m after in a games console. I’ve always liked those that look a bit kooky; the GameCube, pretty much anything that comes in a transparent case, because they’re interesting. While I can appreciate the minimalist, stylish ability of the Xbox One X and upcoming Series X to blend right in with any other device in your living room, I much prefer the idea that this will never blend in to the average living space; it screams “I’m a games console!”
I’m not a huge fan of the disc slot on the standard edition and I’m leaning towards going all-digital for the first time ever purely for that origami symmetry, depending on the pricing structure. Going off size estimations when compared to other current consoles, you’re also going to have to make a fair bit of room for this beast as it looks to be even bigger than the monolithic PS3. That said, we still don’t know the exact specs and it’s hard to get a good feel from the limited angles we’ve seen so far. While design-wise I don’t think this is going to be some timeless piece of hardware given that most purposely “futuristic” devices naturally age when that future becomes the present – well, the disc version at least – it is a truly radical look, forgoing the PlayStation’s signature black launch visuals and opting for crisp white lines. Though I’m sure we’ll see some colour variants somewhere down the line. It’s bold, it was surprising and I’m excited.
Well, those are our thoughts on the PlayStation 5, do you agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments below. Also don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube channel and if you’re feeling generous feel free to donate to our Patreon, thanks for reading.