Could 2011 really be the "Year of the PlayStation 3? While some of the Xbox's loyal followers will disagree, a couple of well-known video game industry analysts think it will be. Wedbush Securities' Michael Pachter and Electronic Entertainment Design and Research's (EEDAR) Jesse Divnich think that 2011 could be the best year ever for Sony's PlayStation 3 console.
Feeding off strong first-party titles like Uncharted 3, Resistance 3, Twisted Metal, LittleBigPlanet 2, Ratchet and Clank: All 4 One, inFamous 2, Killzone 3, Last Guardian, and the Ico and Shadow of the Colossus remake, it is going to be hard to argue with them that the PS3 is set for a strong 2011. Divnich thinks that this first-party lineup will be the driving force behind PS3 sales this year:
"Given the formidable line-up of first-party releases, an effortless conclusion can be made. 2011 will be the biggest year for PlayStation 3 software sales. Regardless of your choice in console, the PlayStation 3 will be in constant rotation in multi-console homes and should be one of the most actively played consoles among core gamers in 2011."
Michael Pachter was asked his thoughts on Jesse Divnich's estimate. While he did agree with his prediction, he was less committed to giving it his guarantee that it was a sure thing:
"Jesse is the best, and he's always right. Sony's lineup is great, and arguably 'better' than Microsoft's. I don't think it really makes much difference which lineup is better, as long as both are great. In any case, gamers win. The best solution for gamers is to own both a PS3 and 360, and they can play whatever they want when they want to."
Pachter's statement makes the most sense if you own multiple systems. Both platforms have their strengths and weaknesses. If you want strong first-party games, go with Sony. If you want the biggest community and a better online experience, go with Microsoft. The competition between Microsoft and Sony is the reason why games like Uncharted 3 and Gears of War 3 are going to be quality experiences. Both companies want to make their game franchises the best, and that can only benefit us gamers.
I agree with Divnich in that if you were to determine the best lineup based on exclusive titles, the PS3 wins hands down. All of those titles mentioned earlier are compared to the slim picking on the Xbox 360 exclusive side, which currently boils down to Gears of War 3 and the new Forza. Hopefully Microsoft will reveal some new upcoming exclusives at E3 this year to pad out that list, but they have already delayed Gears of War 3 due to their need to have a big tent-pole game to push during this year's holiday season. Could we be getting the long rumored Halo remake, or Rare's Perfect Dark 2? Both of those titles, if they were to be released during 2011, would help to offset the exclusive advantage the PS3 appears to currently have.
Add to the list of PS3 games the triple-A cross-platform titles such as Bulletstorm, L.A. Noire, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, and many others, and the PS3 will arguably have the biggest selection of must-have games this year. But issues with the console's security could cast a bad light on the console. There have been whisperings about Sony implementing serial keys for their games in order to combat the now compromised console encryption. If they introduce something like that, all the good will toward them could disappear quickly.
So readers, what are your thoughts on who has the better lineup? Think that Microsoft will surprise us with anything at E3? What do you think about the rumors that Sony could introduce serial keys for their games? Let us know in the comments.
Source: Industry Gamers