Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Unit 20 - Assessment 1: Game platform types

I have set out to look into what systems are out there and what the advantages and disadvantages of each are. My own personal preference is not based on machine specs or power. I have found in nearly 28 years of gaming that the best games are not always the most pretty or powerful. Certain systems I have owned have provided me with so much entertainment, just because the games are consistently well designed. Personally, I am not altogether interested in great graphics or cutting edge engines - if a game is engaging, well designed and fun it does not really matter how it looks. As long as the HCI is well designed, the game is playable and there is some kind of longevity, I am satifised. Anything on top of that is a bonus. 

In terms of preference, I would put my current console at the top of the list. I would say my XBox 360 comes first, as although it is not the most powerful machine around the games library is vast, affordable and a lot of fun. This is the machine that introduced me to multiplayer and co op and to this day can surprise me with what it can do. I love the games and I still don’t feel as though I have seen all its capability yet. With the XBox One currently gathering momentum and being the platform of the moment, alot of the older XBox 360 games are now more affordable. It means I can catch up with stuff I missed first time around at a much lower cost. I have played the XBox One, and to be honest was left a little cold by it. Graphically it's an improvement, but I don't necessarily think the games are better than the 360. It will take a while for developer creativity to catch up with the potential that the XBox One has. In the meantime I am more than happy to explore the vast back catalogue of 360 games and enjoy well designed, memorable experiences.  

I have toyed with the idea of purchasing a Wii U, but again, good software is an issue - there seems to be a lack of titles that truly take advantage of the motion controls.. When combined with the Kinect, the XBox 360 is a really good example of what the current motion technology can do - it also has a decent raft of games to support the device. I do really rate Nintendo, having owned many of their consoles in my time. A good Nintendo game is worth the wait as it's often far better than a game by any other developer. I just feel that they have failed to capitalize on combining their creativity with their technology. I haven't played a single title on the Wii U that's made me say 'wow, that's different - I want that'. The Kinect gives me the best of both worlds. Motion controlled games that are fun combined with the XBox 360 quality of gaming I am used to.

My 3DS has been a trusty companion for many years - every game I have bought has been one I have sat and completed. The design standards of Nintendo are, in my opinion, some of the best in the world. They know what a game should be and how to make it fun.It does have advantages of the XBox 360 as often there is more playability and content in there than a console game. There are however obvious hardware limitations (though the new 3DS looks set to resolve that), and the battery life can be an issue - Super Street Fighter IV seems to consume more than any other game I own due to its size and use of the 3D. 

In third place my PS2 is still a fixture in my flat. The games are great fun - accessible, staightforward, and with a real ‘retro gamers’ value to them. For a quick, casual game this is where I go - as a self confessed video game nerd, I also enjoy picking up obscure gems and back catalogue titles that I never played first time around.

My research and findings regarding consoles are below.

PSP Vita
The PSP Vita is Sony’s flagship handheld machine and the only real direct competition to the Nintendo DS. It has gradually managed to solve many of it’s early problems regarding size and weight through 6 revised designs. The screen is larger and brighter than many of its handheld peers, allowing high resolution graphics, fast processing speed and millions of colours. The Vita has a number of advantages over the original PSP 1000:

- A huge boost in processing power

- Dual Analogue Sticks. The original PSP 1000 had a single stick which made playing certain types of games such as first person shooters all but impossible. With every subsequent announcement of a design revision, gamers had been keeping their fingers crossed for a second stick. Now, not only has a second stick been added, but the design has been improved, making them feel much more like real analog sticks.

- Originally, the Nintendo DS was able to out do the PSP through having a touchscreen. This led many buyers to choose that over Sony’s console. With the PSP Vita, the main display is not only touch screen, but also a second touchpad is fitted on the back of the console. This has led to even more interesting gameplay possibilities.

- While everything seems to have a camera on it these days, the PSP Vita has followed suit and took things a step further. A front and rear camera allow for augmented reality games such as ‘InviZimals’.

- The PSP Vita features motion sensing making it as good as the PS3’s Dualshock controllers.

- The PSP Vita also features interactivity and the ability to communicate with PS3 consoles.These features include content transfers, remote play (for example, watching movies stored on your PS3 hard drive on your PSP), user storage on Sony remote servers, and using the Vita as a PS3 controller.

Size & Portability
182.0 x 18.6 x 83.5 mm
(width x height x depth)

This makes the console highly portable and light, addressing the problems suffered by previous models in the series.
Processor Power
CPU : ARM Cortex-A9 core (4 core)

Quad-core PowerVR SGX543MP4
Memory Storage
512 MB RAM


The PS Vita is incompatible with standard memory cards, such as SD cards, and instead stores data on proprietary PS Vita memory cards, which are available in sizes of 4 GB, 8 GB, 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB.
Graphics Capabilities
5 inch screen size (16:9)
960 x 544 pixel resolution

Approximately 17 million colors


Multi touch screen (capacitive type)
Games available for platform
There are currently around 1100 games available for the PSP Vita, spanning multiple genres and game play styles.
Series History
PSP 1000 - Early, clunky, heavily weighted  model that still managed to pack in a lot of power. It was
originally envisioned as a multi media model that could play movies, music, photos, and games.

PSP 2000 - Dubbed the PSP ‘Slim’ or PSP ‘Lite,’ this update sought to significantly reduce the weight and thickness of the PSP 1000. Hardware changes were fairly minimal, but included an improved screen and faster processor. The addition of Skype to the firmware meant that this model could also be used as a phone.

PSP 3000 - The main change to this model was the brighter LCD screen, leading many to nickname this the PSP ‘Brite’. Early examples of the 3000 led some viewers to able to see scan lines on the screen, though this seemed to be fixed later on. The PSP 3000 is regarded as the best of the series unless you’re a hardcore homebrewer. In this case, the PSP 1000 is recommended for the ability to downgrade the firmware.

PSPgo - The PSPgo is the same as the PSP 3000, but it has been redesigned to be a smaller, more portable size.

PSP E1000 - Designed to be even smaller, sleeker and lighter this model forsakes the WiFi featured in other models. It also has mono rather than stereo sound and a slightly smaller screen than previous PSP models.

PSP Vita - This version of the PSP is possibly the most powerful and currently the most popular. It boasts a slightly larger, brighter hi res screen and more powerful innards. This means smoother, better looking games and backwards compatibility for downloadable titles.
The main limitation for the PSP Vita is that it needs to be charged once a day in order to run effectively.
This makes playing the PS3 and PS4 console versions of the games preferable.

The graphics tend to be watered down versions of their big brother counterparts.

Sony Playstation
The story of the Sony PlayStation begins in 1988 when Sony and Nintendo were working together to produce a ‘Super Disc’ peripheral for Nintendo’s upcoming Super Nintendo Entertainment System. The Super Disc was intended to be an attachable CD ROM system that would be able to play enhanced games, since a CD can hold more data than a cartridge, Unfortunately, Nintendo and Sony could not agree on a number of contractual and licensing decisions. This led to the two companies parting ways, with the Super Disc becoming a project that lay in Sony’s development labs for some years to follow.
Sony continued to develop the project and still had enough confidence in it to incorporate it into their own upcoming console, the Sony PlayStation. Research and development for the PlayStation had begun in 1990 headed by Sony engineer Ken Kutaragi. At this point a small handful of 200 Sony PlayStation / SNES hybrid machines had been produced as development models. Intended as multimedia and multi purpose entertainment units, they could read and play SNES games as well as play audio CDs and read computer data. The SNES element was naturally stripped away to create a machine that specialised in reading data from CDs, a potentially huge amount of information. A PlayStation CD can hold up to 650MB of information, though the games themselves generally used a fraction of this. Most of the disc information was used up by the incredible full motion video cut scenes that the system became known for, again a first for the time.
Subsequently the PlayStation X (PSX) was released in Japan 1994 to unanimous praise. The following year saw the western release. The clever preference towards CD based data would go on to make the PlayStation the best selling console of the 1990’s. Although later challenged by the technical brilliance of 64 Bit consoles such as the Nintendo 64 and the Sega Dreamcast, the PlayStation still proved incredibly popular. So popular in fact that Sony later estimated that sales showed one in every four homes in the US had one.

The handheld controller with its then unprecedented 14 buttons also proved to be influential to generations of consoles for years to come. The ergonomic and stylish design coupled with the vast array of input commands meant players could indulge in complex games in absolute comfort. Later controllers even incorporated rumble and shaking features, in-controller servos that produced actual physical effects to complement the gameplay. The machine was also the first to use memory cards so the player could store, transport and share game data on other consoles.

By the time it was superseded by the PS2, the PS1 had sold 102.49 million units worldwide. It is still regarded as one of the greatest consoles ever made.

Size & Portability
Not a portable machine, being a console designed to plug into a TV set.

10.24 x 1.77 x 7.28 inches

(width x height x depth)
Memory Storage
Utilisation of external memory card of 1 MB RAM
Processor Power
CPU : 32-bit R3000A

Processor clock speed: 33.8688 MHz

MIPS (Million Instructions Per Second): 30

Bus speed: 132 MB per second

Cache: Data: 4 KB; Instruction cache: 1 KB
Graphics Capabilities
Resolution: 640x480 maximum (five interlaced and four non-interlaced modes supported

Geometry engine: Provides additional hardware rendering of polygons to include Gouraud shading, texture-mapping and lighting effects

MPEG decoder
Display  Colors: 24-bit (16,777,216) maximum; other modes supported are 4-bit (16), 8-bit (256) and 15-bit (32,768)
Polygon rendering: 360,000 polygons per second
Maximum sprite size: 256 pixels high x 256 pixels wide
Games available for platform
Worldwide, around 3,230 games were released.
Series History
Eventually the console was superseded by the PS2 when Sony realised that multi media was the way forward. With Sony aiming their product at the lad culture of the 1990’s, the company realised that a multi media machine that could play music and dvds and connect to the internet would appeal to the target market group.
The limitations of this console are chiefly the fact that it originally only had four directional movement.
More seriously it no longer has any games released for it, no internet connectivity and it cannot communicate with modern Playstations.
Sony Playstation 2
The Playstation vastly improved on it’s predecessor not only through the kind of multi media it could handle (music, movies, internet etc) but also through technical horsepower:

- The RISC (Reduced Instruction Set Computer) chip means that instructions and computations performed by the processor are simpler and fewer. Also RISC chips are superscalar - they can perform multiple instructions at the same time. This process allows the CPu to perform better as it has less weighty instructions to handle at any one given time.

- The PS2 uses the alpha channel to add transparency effects to an object. This is a special graphics mode used by digital video, animation and video games to achieve certain looks.

- Bezier surfacing is a 3-D modeling process that calculates how many polygons are needed to create an object. It bases the number on the level of detail necessary to make the object appear to be smooth to the viewer. The PS2 only performs these calculations on Bezier-surfaced objects that are in the game. Perspective correction makes the texture map resize at the same rate as the object that it is mapped on.

- Mip mapping is a form of texture mapping whereby different sizes of each texture map are made. The processor replaces the appearance of an object with a more detailed image as you move closer to the object in the game. The goal is to use the smallest texture map possible given the distance that the object is from the viewer. The smaller the texture map, the lower the processing load. On nearby objects, however, small texture maps create a grainy surface that looks bad, so larger texture maps are used instead.

The machine also featured internet access and online play via 2 USB ports and a Firewire cable. The Dualshock controller from the original Playstation was also revised to include:

- Pressure sensitive buttons

- Force feedback to simulate jarring or rumbling in games that would then be felt through the players hands.

Size & Portability
Not a portable machine, being a console designed to plug into a TV set.

11.9 in x  3.1 in x 7.2 in inches

(width x height x depth)
Processor Power
Processor: 128-bit "Emotion Engine"
Processor clock speed: 300 MHz
Floating point unit (FPU dedicated to handling mathematical equations) co-processor operating at 6.2 gigaflops
Original PlayStation CPU core as I/O processor
Memory Storage
32 MB Internal RDRAM

Supports external memory cards that are supplied in 8MB and 32MB formats

Dual memory card slots
Graphics Capabilities
150 MHz
Embedded cache

Resolution: 640x480 or 320x240 interlaced

Colors: 24-bit (16,777,216) maximum, as well as 16-bit (65,536) mode

Geometry engine:alpha channel, anti-aliasing, Bezier surfacing, Gouraud shading, Mip mapping, perspective correction, Z-buffer

Polygon rendering: 75 million polygons per second
Games available for platform
Worldwide, around 3,230 PS1 games were released which could be played on the PS2.

Worldwide around 3,874 games were released for the PS2.
Series History
PS2 Slimline -The original ‘fat’ PS2 was eventually replaced by the ‘slimline’ version. This had exactly the same features but weighed in at a smaller size:

Height - 1.1 inches
Width - 9.1 inches
Depth - 6 inches

The PS2 was eventually superseded by the PS3.
Limitations to the PS2 are that games are no longer produced for it. Iit can also only display at 480p, and cannot download games like the PS3 and 4 can.
Sony Playstation 3
The Playstation 3 was the Playstation 2’s successor, an extremely powerful console that not only improved on the hardware but also the games library and the HCI (Human Computer Interface). To begin with, the PS3 had one of the most impressive sets of launch titles ever. From family friendly games like ‘Sonic The Hedgehog’ to PS3 exclusives like ‘Resistance: Fall of Man’, the PS3 had a stellar line up from day one. The PS3 also introduced the new ‘Sixaxis’ controller which although looking like the original DualShock, could not have been more different. Instead of rumble (vibration in the controller), the Sixaxis featured motion sensing. This lent itself to more complex games and interface experiences. There was also a memory card adaptor, Blu-ray remote control, and HDMI AV cable available. In particular the ability to Blue Ray HD DVD’s was a major draw for buyers. In addition, the PS3 can play CDs, and DVDs. It will even "upscale" the DVD movies you already own to look better on a HDTV.

Via the PlayStation Network, players could also go online far more easily than they could with a PS2.  With the network players can play games online, download game and entertainment content, purchase music and games, as well as transfer downloaded games to the PSP. Crucially, the network is free to use with players only paying for purchases or monthly fees to play certain games. In addition to all this the PS3 also supports chat and web-surfing using the Sixaxis or any USB keyboard.

In terms of it’s design, Sony wanted to make a console that looked more like a piece of high end electronics equipment rather than a toy. The sleek design is available in two models, a 60GB hard drive version and a 20GB hard drive.
Size & Portability
Not a portable machine, being a console designed to plug into a TV set.

However, users can transfer games to a PSP.

0.98 in x  3.85 in x 10.78 in inches
(width x height x depth)
Processor Power
Processor: 128-bit "Emotion Engine" to provide PS2 game support (see the PS2 above)

Cell Broadband Engine running at 3.2 GHz

The PS3 Cell is essentially seven microprocessors on one chip, allowing it to perform several operations at once.
Memory Storage
256 MB of XDR DRAM at 3.2 GHz and 256 MB of GDDR3 VRAM at 700 MHz

Choice of 60 GB hard drive or 20GB.
The 60 GB also has WiFi capability and the ability to read Flash RAM cards.
Graphics Capabilities
90 or 65 nm NVIDIA/SCEI RSX (Graphics Processing Units) at 550 MHz.
Games available for platform
To date there have been around 945 PS3 games released. A lesser number than previous PlayStation consoles, but greater in quality and complexity.
Series History
The original PS3 was eventually superseded by the PS3 slim. The two models were very similar other than a reduction in ports and overall size.

Users were also able to upgrade the Hard drive in the original PS3, expanding it from 20GB or 60GB to 40GB, 80GB or 160GB.

The original PS3 has since been discontinued with the slim version the only version available to buy in shops.

Most recently the PS3 has been superseded by the highly advanced PS4.
The main problem with the PS3 was the fact that early models would overheat, leaving gamers with no choice but to stop playing and let the machine cool down. Dust build up blockages meant that players would also have to open the casing to clean out the insides, lest the machine stop working.

Something of a lack of games compared to XBox consoles.
Sony Playstation 4
The Playstation 4 is the culmination of 20 years console building experience by Sony. Expanding on the critical acclaim of previous Playstations, Sony has added highly advanced technology and a number of social and sharing features:

- The PS4 can link with a PS Vita to enable the user to carry on playing PS4 games on the Vita’s small digital screen.

- The PS4 now has compatibility with USB sticks to save games.

- The PS4 can access a number of video applications such as Netflix, NHL, GameCenter and Hulu Plus. Specialist channels such as WWE Network and the Manga of Crunchyroll are also available.

- Large games and applications can be downloaded without the user waiting around for the machine to finish. The user can continue with another playing another game or finishing a PS4 task while the download completes.

- The PS4 can switch between open applications in seconds with the tap of a button.

- The PS4 controller, the Dualshock 4 has motion sensing capabilities.

- The colour coded light on top of the Dualshock 4 is not just for show. Not only does it provide PlayStation Move-like motion capability for developers who want to implement it into their games, but there are times it'll match up with in-game actions as well. For example, in Tomb Raider: Complete Edition, when you light up a torch, it turns bright red.

- In game soundtracks can be substituted for any track saved on your PS4 system. This means you can play your favourite game along to your favourite tunes.

- The user can record and share YouTube videos online, and share games with other PS4 gamers; even if they do not own a copy themselves. The PlayStation Camera has a 1280x800 pixel sensor capable of capturing video at 60 frames-per-second.
Size & Portability
Not a portable machine, being a console designed to plug into a TV set.

However, users can transfer games to a PSVita.

10 in x  2 in x 12 in inches

(width x height x depth)
Processor Power
Main Processor: Single-chip custom processor  
CPU: low power x86-64 AMD “Jaguar”, 8 cores
GPU: 1.84 TFLOPS, AMD Radeon™ Graphics Core Next engine

Ethernet x1, IEEE 802.11b/g/n

(2.4 GHz only), Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
Memory Storage

500GB hard disk drive, user removable
Graphics Capabilities
When the PS3 was released back in 2006, it was the most cutting-edge gaming console around. However, over the last few years, the games have needed to be scaled down so that they can be played on PS3.

With the PS4 game developers have all the freedom they need to explore the next generation graphic capabilities that this latest console has to offer.

The first and most obvious comparison is the facial comparison between PS3 and PS4. PS4 gameplay graphics  bring more depth and emotion to facial expressions, making every character played look far more believable.

PS4 graphics place more emphasis on the smaller backdrop details of the game.  The PS4 graphics allow the liberty to design scenes that incorporate live geographical conditions of the area you want to play in. This ensures that the scene on screen is always changing and never remains static.
Games available for platform
The are currently around 471 games available for the system.
Series History
The PlayStation 4 greatly reduces the limitations seen with the PS3 and developers will be able to focus more on bringing new experiences to gamers instead of worrying about limits.
The main limitation of the PS4 is that despite being next gen hardware it is still not as powerful as a PC gaming rig. The console is set to run at 30 frames per second at 1080p. This is low in comparison to the PC standard of 60 fps and heights of 4k resolution, which is 4096 x 2160.
Microsoft XBox
The original XBox was envisioned in 1998 when the idea of a console that could pack the same power as a PC gaming rig was pitched to Bill Gates. Kevin Bachus, Seamus Blackley, Otto Berkes, and Ted Hase formed the console division of Microsoft. The system was intended to run on WIndows 2000, allowing PC software developers the ability to work within the console’s system architecture. Originally entitled the ‘DirectX Box’, the system was also intended to run at twice the processing power of the then market leader, the PS2. Initially believing that the abbreviated ‘XBox’ would not sit well with consumers, focus groups proved the company wrong, taking to the name immediately. This gave Microsoft the killer combination of both a console with a great concept and a catchy name.
Two years later, Bill Gates presented the machine at the March 2000 Game Developers Conference. He introduced a machine with vastly improved specs, the ability for players to play online and an internal storage device to contain media, games and movies. The press were sceptical, seeing the machine as nothing more than a dressed up PC. Undaunted, Microsoft continued to push and believe in the new console, showcasing it again at that year’s E3 show. It was there that the Xbox developer first connected with Bungie Studios, the creators of a third-person shooter titled Halo: Combat Evolved.

Microsoft purchased Bungie for  $30 million a short time later. It was Bungie’s decision to adapt Halo in order to make the best use of the new console’s abilities (and turn it into a first-person shooter) that helped make history.
Nearly a full year later, revealed the final design of the Xbox at the 2001 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, along with the system’s official release date. The console was released on November 14 2001 with a $299.00 price tag. The system sold immediately, riding on a wave of hype and public interest. One of the key reasons for the system’s sales success was its flagship game ‘Halo’. Not only was it an XBox exclusive, but it was also one of the most compelling, well designed first person shooters in many years. Sales of Halo shattered all previous records, with more than 1 million copies of the game sold in the first few months of its release.

The system began to face geographical sales problem soon after - the system had already sold well in North America, but had a harder time cracking the Japanese market. Just 123,000 sold in the first week of its release. A second issue came about in the high cost to Microsoft of producing the console. This made the next move by Microsoft even more surprising as the company subsequently slashed the price of the unit from $299.00 to $199.00. This made it almost impossible for the company to turn a profit but did succeed in introducing an XBox into even more households. This shrewd move also meant that the console outsold the Nintendo Gamecube, its closest competitor that had just been released that year.

The much vaunted XBox Live appeared on the console’s first birthday a year later. Allowing players the world over to play together in a communal environment was a huge draw for anyone considering a purchase. The introduction of XBox Live also meant that users could download new games and content for existing games, along with taking multiplayer interaction to a new level.

With over 150,000 subscribers in its first week, Xbox Live was a huge success, and the numbers continued to grow for Microsoft’s online gaming network in the following years. However, not everyone was happy with the service. Electronics Arts took issue with the subscription based nature of the service and chose to discontinue XBox development of the popular ‘Madden’ football series. However, Microsoft and Electronic Arts were able to reach an agreement a year later that saw the series return to the console.

However, things were not looking good for the XBox. Despite the console only having been released a few years earlier, Microsoft was still losing money on every console sold. Also the cutting edge technology was beginning to look dated, becoming a limitation to progress. Talk began of a second XBox, codenamed ‘Xenon’  that would eventually become the XBox 360. Still, Microsoft pushed forward with new features aimed at making the Xbox – and its heirs – the all-purpose online media hub that it was supposed to be all along, with Xbox Live Arcade launching in November 2004.

However, the original XBox still had one last card to play - the release of Halo 2 proved that rumours of the console’s demise had been greatly exaggerated. More than 2.5 million copies of the game were sold within the first 24 hours, netting Microsoft $125 million. This was the most successful launch of any entertainment product up to that point, be it movie, music or video game. Halo 2 is still regarded as one of the greatest consumer successes in history. The game’s financial success eclipsed the success of the XBox itself, which was still costing Microsoft more to make than what the profits they were gaining in return.
When the next generation of XBox was released in November 2005, the XBox 360, the writing was on the wall for the original console. Production of the XBox ceased shortly after with the final total of sales standing at 24 million units. This fell far short of the predicted 50 million, yet still eclipsed competitors the Nintendo Gamecube (21 million)  and the Sega Dreamcast (10.6 million). Only the Playstation 2 did better, selling an incredible 153 million units. The last game produced for the Xbox in North America, Madden 09, was released August 2008, and support for the system was discontinued in March 2009. The final nail in the console’s coffin was hammered April 14, 2010, with Xbox Live access eliminated for the original Xbox.
Size & Portability
Not a portable machine, being a console designed to plug into a TV set.
Processor Power
32-bit 733 MHz, custom Intel Pentium III Coppermine-based processor in a Micro-PGA2 package
Memory Storage
64 MB of DDR SDRAM at 200 MHz

8 or 10 GB hard drive.

8MB & 32MB memory cards available to slot into machine
Graphics Capabilities
233 MHz nVidia NV2A graphics card
Games available for platform
There were around 999 games available on the platform.
Series History
Due to Microsoft losing money on the production of these consoles, and flagging in the face of competition, the decision was made to release a new next gen XBox
Games are now discontinued.
Games from this console do not always work on an XBox 360.
XBox Live Arcade for the original XBox has long been discontinued, so multiplayer games can only be played locally.  

Microsoft XBox 360
The next XBox boasted vastly improved graphics and processing power, and sold well almost everywhere right from its launch date. Europe and America were sell out successes, yet the Japanese market proved to be more difficult to crack. By the end of 2005, the XBox had shipped 1.5 million units, proving that it had what it took to be the new dominant consoles. However, during the rush to get the system into households some serious problems got past Microsoft’s quality control.
The chief problem turned out to be the ‘Red Ring of Death’, a hardware failure that meant the console stopped working permanently. Microsoft were forced to repair and replace many thousands of faulty systems, further affecting their profits. However despite these early problems the XBox 360 was a hit with gamers - by the end of 2010 the console had sold an amazing 39 million units.

In 2010, the XBox was given a new peripheral that would take gaming and user interaction to another level. The ‘Kinect’ was a motion sensing camera peripheral that plugged into the console. With this added, the player could use their body to control games leading to greater levels of interaction. The game play opportunities this afforded extended to genres such as sports, shoot em up and adventure titles. This gadget continued to help the console sell, as well as putting the XBox 360 at the forefront of gaming technology.

A year later, Microsoft announced that the XBox 360 would be getting a major redesign under the name the ‘XBox 360 S’. This redesign would incorporate a thinner body, upgraded internal specs, additional USB ports, and built-in Wi-Fi.

Over the course of its 10 year existence the XBox 360 had proven to be vastly popular with gamers. Developers still continue to produce games for the machine, despite it’s next generation big brother, the XBox One also being available. Many companies release a game for both formats - often the look of the game on the XBox One is significantly better due to the processors and graphics units. With these dual platform releases however, the gameplay is essentially exactly the same. This has led many to be content with their XBox 360 rather than upgrading to an XBox One. The library of games is vast, in the 1000’s. and still added to by high level developers. As well as being an exceptionally powerful machine the XBox 360 also has the following features:
- Access to apps - Users can access popular apps including Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube Twitch, Crackle, Machinima, Amazon Instant Video, and more. Users can also find what they want to watch with the sound of your voice.

- Movies, Music  and TV on the go - Users can sign into XBox Live and watch movies and TV or listen to music on their tablet or smartphone.

- The Kinect acts as a personal trainer meaning users can get fit in the comfort of their home. Using real time feedback and elite level coaching, Nike+ Kinect Training delivers a personalized program that evolves as you do.
- Watch the web on your TV

- A second screen with SmartGlass - Xbox SmartGlass lets the user use their phone or tablet as a second screen with the Xbox 360 for an enhanced entertainment experience. With SmartGlass, the user devices work together to show rich interactive activities and new content related to what they're watching or playing on TV at the moment.

- XBox Live Gold - Joining Xbox Live Gold gives the user the ability to download free games a month. Titles on offer have included the recent Tomb Raider reboot and Bioshock Infinite. The user can keep them forever on his / her hard drive.
Even with the next-generation XBox One available , sales of the 360 continue to assert Microsoft’s powerful position in the console-gaming industry. By March 2014, the tally of units sold had reached 83.7 million . Although the sales of the 360 trails behind Nintendo’s Wii, which have sold close to 100 million, the 360 outsold the Ps3 by around 5 million.

Microsoft has stated they plan to support the Xbox 360 until at least 2016 which is good news for people who want a cheaper alternative to the XBox One.
Size & Portability
Not a portable machine, being a console designed to plug into a TV set.
Processor Power
‘Xenon’ CPU - custom triple-core 64-bit PowerPC-based design running at 3.2 GHz each
Memory Storage
512 MB of GDDR3 RAM clocked at 700 MHz

700 MHz of DDR

Unified memory architecture

Detachable and upgradeable 20GB hard drive
Graphics Capabilities
500 MHz ATI Xenos processor 10 MB of embedded DRAM
500 million triangles per second polygon processor

48 billion shader operations per second

16 gigasamples per second pixel fill rate
Games available for platform
There are around 1,137 games available on the platform with new ones being released every month.
Series History
Superseded by the Xbox One, though Microsoft plan to support the 360 until at least 2016.
Not a Blu Ray machine so has a small DVD capacity - developers often have to make large games stretch across multiple discs.

Prone to the ‘Red Ring Of Death’ which can end the consoles life. Microsoft has however extended the warranty to help gamers deal with this.

Microsoft XBox One
The XBox One is the successor to the XBox 360 with which Microsoft has made every attempt to be an all-in-one entertainment centre. In gaming terms it also has significantly more powerful hardware, allowing for the creation of realistic games. The media abilities of the XBox One have been developed to allow players to have total control over their entertainment whilst using the system. Players can listen to their favourite music in-game, or they can jump from game to TV to movies instantaneously. The Kinect hardware is now vastly improved from its original counterpart - as such the console can obey voice commands allowing the player to control the system via their voice. The idea by Microsoft is allow a unique tailoring of experiences for each player, hence the powerful customisation options.

The XBox One features an increased emphasis on cloud based computing. This in effect allows the viewer to overlay live programmes from an existing set top box with an enhanced programme guide. The console also features a redesign of the hardware architecture, moving away from the PowerPC set up of the 360 back to the x86 architecture of the original XBox. This means that larger amounts of virtual memory and physical memory allow programs to store greater amounts of data in the memory.

Of course, at its heart the XBox One is a games machine - it has been built by gamers for gamers meaning advanced computer AI, enhanced online multiplayer and a wide range of exclusive titles. Other key features of the console include:

- Online multiplayer powered by 300,000 servers. This means better player matchmaking for games, less waiting and better technical hardware performance in game.

- Players can record their best moments and share them or broadcast gameplay live on Twitch.

- Games, TV, Movies, Music and Sports are all in one place. It is easy to get from one to another just by snapping app tiles together side by side and scrolling through your channels.

- Players can use BIng to search for entertainment via apps, the console or the web.

- A powerful gaming operating system fused with an equally powerful Windows system. This means games and applications can run simultaneously side by side.
- The Kinect is now even more responsive and intuitive, capable of delivering unparalleled voice, vision and motion technology. This allows gamers to interact with realistic, cinematic worlds in a way that was previously undreamt of. The Kinect is now so sophisticated it can sign players in when they enter the room, or accelerate through a game with a simple gesture. The IR camera can see in the dark and even tell if a player is standing off balance.
Advanced voice isolation lets the Kinect know who to listen to, even in a crowded room. It can even detect whether the user wants to switch on or off or pause the current game.

- Using SmartGlass, players can utilise the phone or tablet that they already own. Games and add on content can be purchased remotely and providing the XBox One is set to automatically update, downloading can begin straight away. XBox Live Gold members can even initiate an instant download of free monthly games that are on offer. This means no waiting around for the player when they get home as the content should already be installed. The users phone or tablet can even become an ideal second screen companion to their TV. SmartGlass automatically serves up extended experiences of TV shows, movies, music and games. Interactive companion guides, behind-the scenes commentary, and real-time game strategy are just a taste of what the user can unlock.

- SmartGlass can even act as a remote controller for your TV and deliver programme information at the same time.

- The consoles controller is a refined reigned of the XBox 360 version with an enhanced D-Pad and force feedback triggers. These give a rumbling sensation that is gentle or strong based on how much force the player applies to the triggers when squeezing them. In effect, this creates realistic HCI effects such as firing a gun, pushing a block, driving a vehicle, etc.

The main limitation of the XBox One is that it is not backwards compatible with 360 games or older. This has caused some consternation amongst players who feel that they are being unfairly forced into buying a new console. As stated however, many companies have sought to appease gamers by releasing new titles across all platforms, including the two XBox machines. The games however are very expensive retailing at around £50.00 each.

As of October 31 2014, the console has sold 10 million units and shows no signs of slowing down on sales.  
Size & Portability
Console not portable, but can transfer content to devices such as phones and tablets, making it portable in a sense.

The user can also use a tablet or smartphone with SmartGlass installed to communicate with their console
Processor Power
Custom 1.75 GHz AMD 8 core APU(2 Quad-Core Jaguar modules)

Clock Speed: 853 MHz(originally 800 MHz)
Shader Cores: 768

Peak Throughput: 1.31 TFLOPS
Memory Storage
8 GB DDR3 RAM (5 GB available to games)

500 GB internal hard drive - Non replaceable

External Hard Drive support available

Cloud storage
Graphics Capabilities
853 MHz AMD Radeon GCN architecture (inside of APU)

1080 pixels display
Games available for platform
There are currently around 275 games available on the platform with new releases every month.
Series History
Latest generation of the XBox machines.
Kinect needs to be permanently on for the unit to function. This has caused privacy concerns amongst gamers as all the data the kinect records is stored on Microsoft servers.

Currently has a real lack of games.
Nintendo Wii
The Nintendo Wii is Nintendo’s competitor to the last gen consoles produced by Sony and Microsoft, the PS3 and the XBox 360 respectively. Although not as powerful as those machines, this is intentional. The philosophy when designing the Wii was that consoles that exhibit raw power are not necessarily better. The focus for the Wii was therefore not on power, but on a new form of player interaction.

In 2003, game engineers and designers were brought together to develop the concept further. The first public viewing of the machine was at the 2006 E3 show. Originally slated to appear at the 2005 show, Nintendo cancelled as they felt they had some trouble shooting with the controller to do. Said to be heavily inspired by the then existing Nintendo DS, the engineers at Nintendo had set about making a copy of the successful touch panel interface. They even built a prototype but ultimately decided that it would be a bad idea to have two systems that were exactly the same. Eventually the original motion sensor concept was adopted, developing into a pointer on screen that could control games like a mouse cursor.

Perhaps the biggest clue to the Wii’s intentions as a console lie in the name. The two lower case i’s standing side by side are intended to represent people playing together. The name ‘Wii’ is also intended to sound like ‘We’ indicating a shared experience that is social and communal. Although Sony and Microsoft were interested in co operative gaming they had not placed such an emphasis on it in the origination of their consoles. This focus on family play along with the groundbreaking motion controls meant the Wii had a killer combination of ideas from the outset.

On September 14, 2006 Nintendo announced release information for Japan, North and South America, Oceania, Asia and Europe including dates, prices, and projected unit-distribution figures. It was announced that the majority of the 2006 shipments would be allotted to the Americas, and 33 titles would be available at its launch.

The Wii was launched in the United States on November 19, 2006 for $249.99, and was later launched in the United Kingdom on December 8, 2006 for £179. The United Kingdom experienced a widespread shortage of Wii units in many High-Street and online stores, and was unable to fulfill all pre-orders at its release.

22 games were announced for launch day with another 12 being announced for release in late 2006. Wii Sports was included with the console, a great title to showcase the concepts of communal play and the motion control. Interestingly the Wii was bought largely by old peoples homes as the console gave them access to exercise that they missed out on by being unable to go outside.  This lends weight to Nintendo’s claim that their console has the largest target demographic as their games appeal to many different sorts of age groups and players.

Gamecube games were also made compatible with the console, expanding the range of software titles available. In addition the Wii received more support from developers than either the PS3 or the XBox 360 - companies such as  Ubisoft, Sega, Square Enix, Activision Blizzard, Electronic Arts and Capcom all pledged their support for the innovative new console.

On top of all this, The Virtual Console service allows Wii owners to play games originally released for the Nintendo Entertainment System, Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Nintendo 64, Sega's Mega Drive/Genesis and Sega Mark III/Sega Master System, NEC's TurboGrafx-16/PC Engine, SNK's Neo Geo console, Commodore 64 and arcade games. Virtual Console games are distributed over broadband Internet via the Wii Shop Channel, and are saved to the Wii internal flash memory or to a removable SD card. Once downloaded, Virtual Console games can be accessed from the Wii Menu (as individual channels) or from an SD card via the SD Card Menu. There is also a Wii homebrew community, dedicated to creating and playing content unendorsed by Nintendo.

As of December 2014, 905.27 million Wii games have been sold; a figure cementing the console’s success. The most successful game is Wii Sports - this has sold 82.54 million copies surpassing Super Mario Bros as the best selling game of all time. It helps that Wii Sports comes bundled with the console - the best selling unbundled game is Mario Kart Wii which clocks in at 35.53 million units sold.

The Wii Remote is the primary controller for the console. It uses a combination of built-in accelerometers and infrared detection to sense its position in 3D space when pointed at the LEDs in the Sensor Bar. This design allows users to control the game with physical gestures as well as button-presses. The controller connects to the console using Bluetooth with an approximate 30 ft (9.1 m) range, and features rumble and an internal speaker. The Wii Remote can connect to expansion devices through a proprietary port at the base of the controller. The device bundled with the Wii retail package is the Nunchuk unit, which features an accelerometer and a traditional analog stick with two trigger buttons. In addition, an attachable wrist strap can be used to prevent the player from unintentionally dropping (or throwing) the Wii Remote. The Wii MotionPlus is another accessory that connects to the Wii Remote to supplement the accelerometer and sensor-bar capabilities, enabling actions to appear on the screen in real time. Further augmenting the remote's capabilities is the Wii Vitality Sensor, a fingertip pulse oximeter sensor that connects through the Wii Remote.

It stands as testament to the console that the innovative motion controls were directly copied by both of Nintendo’s rivals, Sony and Microsoft. Ironically, the next version of the Wii, the Wii U borrowed heavily from the PSVita and SmartGlass technology - using a peripheral device as a second gameplay screen.
Size & Portability
The smallest Nintendo console to date - it is light, portable and measures just 173 in x 6.18 in x 8.48 in

(width x height x depth)
Processor Power
The system has a processing unit of PowerPC-based Broadway processor, made with a 90 nm SOI CMOS process, reportedly† clocked at 729 MHz
Memory Storage
88 MB main memory (24 MB internal 1T-SRAM integrated into graphics package, 64 MB external GDDR3 SDRAM).

3 MB embedded GPU texture memory and frame buffer.

512 MB Internal flash memory

SD Card, SDHC card

Nintendo Gamecube Memory card
Graphics Capabilities
The system uses the ATI Hollywood GPU made with a 90 nm CMOS process, reportedly clocked at 243 MHz
Games available for platform
1359 games have been released for the Wii as of November 25th 2014. The bestselling of these games is of course Wii Sports which sold a total of 82.54 million copies worldwide. It has since become the bestselling game of all time.

Gamecube games are compatible, with some being re released as Wii games that make use of the motion sensor controls.

Games for many virtual consoles are available from the Wii online shop.
Series History
Eventually the Wii has been upgraded to the Wii U, a console that sought to continue the touchscreen concepts originally envisaged by the Wii developers. The Wii and Wii U still appear to co exist alongside one another with Nintendo planning to release Wii content for another few years.
The games limit the platform as some perceive them to be the lowest quality in the market and do not compare to games released on rival consoles.

Nintendo Wii U
The Wii U is the successor to the popular Wii console and builds on its success in a number of innovative ways. The first and the most obvious is the addition of a large touchscreen peripheral that makes up one half of the supplied console. The touchscreen enhances the gameplay possibility and directly controls what the user sees on their TV screen. Some games actually show different images simultaneously so the player has to use both the TV and touch screen to play the game. Some of the other main advantages of the Wii U:

- A game can be played on the touchscreen even when the main console is turned off - ideal for another friend or family member who wants to watch TV whilst the gamer keeps playing.

- The touchscreen gamepad is extremely sensitive - players can combine gestures such as pushing, tapping, shaking and rolling to discover exciting new ways to play. Many who have played on the console have come away saying how naturalistic and right the gamepad feels.

- The GamePad also includes motion control, a front-facing camera, a microphone, stereo speakers, rumble features, a sensor bar, a stylus, and support for Near Field Communication (NFC).

- The Wii U and its gamepad are designed to allow players to become part of a worldwide Nintendo community. Players can greet each other, chat and exchange artwork.

- The console is also designed to be more multi media friendly, allowing users to watch TV, browse the internet, listen to music and download purchases from the Nintendo eShop.

The hardware for the console is also a little ahead of peers in its generation such as the PS3 and XBox 360 - though not by much. It does boast impressive horsepower when stood next to the likes of the XBox One and PS4 however.

The games are possibly the Wii U’s biggest limitation - there are simply not enough of them. On a positive note, what there is are finely tuned, addictive original play experiences that cannot be found anywhere else. This is due to the innovation and novelty of the way the gamepad is integrated into the games. It is a system that is built for family fun hence its appeal to many generations.. While you can play violent games on the Wii U—Call of Duty, Batman, etc.—the system’s exclusives tend to be appropriate for all ages. Donkey Kong Country games are super tough, but there’s no blood and gore. Zelda has great dungeons and tricky puzzles, but never strays into the dark waters of worrying violence.

Size & Portability
A small, lightweight console that has a deliberately portable touchscreen peripheral

6.8 inches  x  1.8 inches  x  10.5 inches
(width x height x depth)

Weight is 1.6kg (3.5 pounds)  
Processor Power
IBM Power®-based multi-core microprocessor

IBM has revealed it to be a 45nm chip, with embedded DRAM. Additionally, the CPU is based on the same chip that is used in the Watson supercomputer, implying it is a Power7 model.

A hacker known as Hector Martin said that the CPU clocks in at about 1.23 GHZ.
Memory Storage
2GB RAM - 1GB allocated to system functions

Internal flash memory: 8GB(7.2GB usable) - Basic Set,
32GB (25GB usable) - Deluxe Set

Expandable memory via external USB hard drive and SDHC memory cards.Note the SDHC are only for Wii memory and Wii shop games.
Graphics Capabilities
GPU is a HD 4770

Eyefinity-like multi-display tech for up to four SD video streams

Supports 1080px display resolution along with 1080i, 720p, 480p, 480i
Games available for platform
Mainly Nintendo franchises like Zelda, Mario and Donkey Kong as well as several dozen sports and fitness games. There are currently 457 games planned or released for the Nintendo Wii U. Nintendo has a very strong library of console exclusive games
Series History
The Wii U is the successor to the popular Wii. Lifetime sales of the console stand at 9.2 million units. Mario Kart 8 sold 4.77 million copies during the quarter, and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U sold 3.39 million copies.

However, the Wii U remains behind Xbox One and PS4 lifetime sales, despite the fact that the Wii U had a head start on its competitors.
Wii U does not come with AV cables, you can either use the ones from your Wii or buy them from the store if you do not have a HDTV.

The Nintendo Wii U console has a less powerful CPU and GPU than its peers. This means that the Wii U cannot play games that place heavy demands on the CPU or GPU, sacrificing availability of some games in the process.


Nintendo 3DS
In 2009, the Nintendo DS games market began to look like it was reaching the end of its lifespan. Subsequently, rumours of what Nintendo would do next began to circulate. At the time the company controlled as much as 68.3 percent of the gaming market. When it was reported in Octobet that Nintendo had selected the Nvidia GPU products to be central to their next handheld, the rumour mill went into a frenzy. Nintendo company president Satoru Iwata had commented that while mobile broadband connectivity via subscription "doesn't fit Nintendo customers", he was interested in exploring options like Amazon's Whispernet found on the Amazon Kindle. This service provides free wireless connectivity to its customers for the sole purpose of browsing and purchasing content from the Kindle Store.

In addition, Nintendo had expressed an interest in motion controlled systems for some years (see the entry on the Wii, above). An alleged comment from Satoru Iwata in a 2010 interview implied that the new handheld would feature a motion sensor. That year the magazine ‘Computer & Video Games’ reported that a handful of Japanese developers were in possession of software development kits, with ‘The Pokemon Company’ having been given special authority. The article reported that the console hardware would have a ‘tilt’ function like the iPhone, but far more powerful. On March 23, 2010, Nintendo officially announced the Nintendo 3DS handheld console, successor to the Nintendo DS family.

The 3DS is the latest in a 35 year history of producing handheld gaming consoles. Beginning in 1980 with the LCD game and watch range, through the 90’s with the Game Boy and into the 2000’s with the DS series the company defined portable gaming. Though Nintendo has arguably released well more than a dozen handheld systems, it really boils down to less than a handful of platforms and two iconic brands: the Game Boy and the DS.

From simple early monochrome, through colour and now into 3D, the 3DS represents the pinnacle of gaming on the go. As well as being lightweight, battery efficient and processor powerful, the 3DS is capable of displaying stereoscopic 3D effects without the use of 3D glasses or additional accessories. Unveiled in March 2010, the system was revealed to be compatible with older DS titles meaning that gamers would not have to forsake their collections. This provided direct competition to the Sony PSVita which had limited backwards compatibility.

Originally released worldwide in March 2011, the console retailed at the high price of $249. This was an extremely steep asking price causing Nintendo to slash the cost to $169 dollars just 6 months later. To compensate those who had paid the high launch price, Nintendo offered those people 10 free NES games and 10 free Gameboy Advance games from the Nintendo eShop. The strategy was considered a massive success, and paved the way for high sales of the console worldwide. As of December the console has reached sales of 50.9 million

The handheld offers new features such as:

-The StreetPass and SpotPass tag modes, powered by Nintendo Network

- Augmented reality, using its 3D cameras

- Virtual Console, which allows owners to download and play games originally released on older video game systems.

- It is also pre-loaded with various applications including these: an online distribution store called Nintendo eShop, a social networking service called Miiverse; an Internet Browser; the Netflix, Hulu Plus and YouTube streaming video services; Nintendo Video; a messaging application called Swapnote) and Mii Maker.

- Online and local link up gaming

In June 2012, rumours began to swirl once again - Nintendo were working on a larger version of an already powerful little console. The 3DSXL launched shortly after, boasting greater storage space and a 90% bigger screen than the original 3DS.

2014 saw the release of the 2DS, a new entry-level model for the 3DS family. Almost identical in hardware to the 3DS, the 2DS offered a lack of 3D and a mono rather than stereo speaker. These hardware sacrifices meant that Nintendo could release the console at a relatively lower price point, broadening their customer base.  
Size & Portability
Small, light and highly portable. Built exactly for these purposes: gaming on the go, or an efficient little console that doesn’t take up loads of space at home.

93 mm high x 156 mm wide x 22 mm thick (closed) - weight of 336g
Processor Power
CPU Dual-Core ARM11 MPCore, single-core ARM9
Memory Storage
1 GB internal flash memory

Graphics Capabilities
Included 2 GB SD card (3DS)
Included 4 GB SDHC card (3DS XL)

Cartridge save

LCD screens


One user-facing and two forward-facing VGA cameras

Game card

The Nintendo 3DS Game Card is a media format used to physically distribute video games for Nintendo 3DS systems. Despite looking near-identical to its predecessor, the Nintendo DS Game Card, there is a small tab jutting out on the side of the card, preventing 3DS game cards from being inserted into a Nintendo DS. These game cards can hold up to either 1 GB, 2 GB or 4 GB of game data depending on the game, which is 2, 4 and 8 times more storage, respectively, than the biggest Nintendo DS Game Card's capacity (512 MB). Some sources claim that an 8 GB version could be produced should a game ever require it.
Games available for platform
There are around 612 games available for the 3DS as of March 2015.
Series History
New versions of the 3DS and 3DS XL were released in 2014, boasting improved, faster processors and a host of features including:

- Face tracking for improved 3D viewing angles

- Additional ZL/ZR shoulder buttons

- A new "C-Stick" pointing stick that are comparable to and backwards compatible with games that support the Circle Pad Pro.

- Colored face buttons inspired by those of Super Famicom/SNES controllers

- Automatic brightness adjustment

- MicroSD storage

- Larger batteries for longer play times before recharging

- integrated near-field communications support for use with Amiibo products.

- Larger screens

- Exclusive games that are optimised to work with the upgraded processor such as ‘Xenoblade Chronicles 3D.’ These games will be incompatible with older models
Limitations are few, occurring mainly when comparing 3DS games to larger console games. In this respect elements such as graphical quality, objects rendered, speed, etc are noticeably different. Games that are ported over from larger consoles such as the XBox 360 or Playstation 3 have to be dramatically downscaled to run properly.

Taken on it’s own merits however, the 3DS is an awesome little machine.


Gaming PC
The origins of gaming have existed on personal computers long before the dawn of consoles. Therefore it should come as no real surprise that today, PC’s outclass the highest powered console. Many gamers prefer the balance of superb looks and extreme power. Many console gamers argue in return that the content of a game outweighs the graphics on their machines - that is to say that the story makes the lack of visual power worthwhile. There is an argument in return using cars as a metaphor - there is a reason that we choose a Ferrari over a Ford Focus. That reason is because looks and performance both matter. Both cars are capable of taking you on a journey, but one will be a much more comfortable ride than the other.

- Many say that a PC gaming experience is also better because of the ability to modify a game and add fresh content. When a game is released on console the content is all completed and inaccessible to modders - what you see is what you can play with and once it’s over, that’s it. The modding community around PC games can add content indefinitely because of the ability to access the code. They can add fresh content, interesting things and new developments to increase the longevity of even the oldest games.

- PC games are backwards compatible, which is a problem that more and more console gamers are becoming aware of. An XBox One cannot play an XBox 360 game for example. PC gamers do not have to worry about those kind of limitations as emulators make it possible to play old games on new machines.

- In terms of control systems, PCs can work with controllers or keyboard and mouse depending on your preference. A PC does not limit the user to one control system, meaning freedom and flexibility for players.

Perhaps the most attractive reason to choose a PC for gaming over a console is the ability to upgrade hardware at any time. Whenever a new console is released, often the internet is full of arguing over which is better. PC gamers do not have to get involve in this talk as they know that if their machine is not quite up to scratch they can simple add or replace components. The examination of a PC’s hardware below is based on an extremely high spec model. Specs and power can vary greatly in a PC depending on the amount of money spent on the set up, the hardware, software and quality of the parts.
Size & Portability
A gaming laptop can be light, small and therefore very portable. A desktop / mini tower PC can vary in size and is unlikely to be particularly portable. The large cases are for storing a large amount of hardware as well as the cooling system to keep the machine temperature down.
Processor Power
The power of console CPus is low compared to a gaming PC. A good standard PC processor runs at around 4 - 5 Mhz, compared to a console which is around half that..
Memory Storage
The memory size of PC's can be much larger than the consoles.8GB is sufficient to run even high end games. This equates as having around 5GB available for games and 3Gb for VRAM.  In comparison, many consoles today have just 5GB for handling games and VRAM.
Graphics Capabilities
The graphics compute power of a playstation 4 for is 1.84 TFLOPS. The TFLOP of the average gaming PC is around 6 times higher.  This graphics processing power means higher frame rates are available. This in turn means more speed, colour, detail, smoothness and resolution.

MOst consoles have a maximum of around 30 fps.  A console also cannot handle the high screen resolution that a PC can. PCs can play games with a 4000 ppi screen resolution  at around 60 fps.
Games available for platform
PC games can be easily made, meaning the number of titles available in the hundreds of 1000’s. As a reference, on steam alone there are around 4000 games.
Keeping up with the hardware demands can get quite costly. A PC also requires more maintenance than a console to protect it from viruses. Gaming laptops aside, PCs are not easily portable.
In terms of games many big console title releases are not made available on PC for some time, meaning that PC gamers have to wait longer to play great games than others.

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