HSU students choose sides in gaming console ‘wars’

By Dane Corle
Flapjack Chronicle

“All my friends back home in San Diego are going for PS4,” said Leonardo Simmons, a music theory major at HSU. “but everyone I know at HSU seems to be going for the new Xbox.”

As of Nov. 22, a new console war has begun, and the it’s the talk of the town for the students at HSU. Some students prefer Sony’s new Playstation 4 while others prefer Microsoft’s new Xbox One. It’s hardly a new occurrence, as it’s happened repeatedly with every new console generation since 1990, when Sega and Nintendo were competing for dominance of the console market, and fans were taking sides with the kind of intensity usually reserved for actual wartime.

The occurrence of this phenomenon is so utterly absolute that, starting on Nov. 13, South Park creator’s Trey Parker and Matt Stone decided to dedicate an entire story arc to it on their show, with the young inhabitants of South Park choosing to align themselves with either the PS4 or Xbox One in a manner deliberately reminiscent of HBO’s Game of Thrones.

It’s only natural that those same allegiances make their way to HSU and its student body, especially with the holiday season upon us. Some students have managed to maintain a balanced perspective on the matter, like Lumberjack writer Sebastian Hedberg. “Both of them are equally powerful systems as far as I’m concerned” Hedberg said. “I’m only getting a PS4 first because it’s probably going to have the kind of games I like.”

A great deal of student opinions, however, seem to be in full favor of the PS4. Or rather, in full opposition to the Xbox One. Many students at HSU are still feeling a sense of betrayal and disappointment from Microsoft’s initial reveal of the Xbox One on May 21, at which point Microsoft outlined its plans for the console to focus on a broader range of multimedia capabilities, rather than focusing on games. For some students like Olivia Drake, a DJ for KRFH, it’s still a sore topic of discussion.

“Everything that has to do with the Xbox One looks like it’s going down in flames,” Drake said. “Nobody buys a game console to watch TV, and those who do deserve to have $500 taken out of their wallet.”

Other aspects of the Xbox One, such as its zero-tolerance policy towards used games, only caused even greater controversy. While features like this were later removed due to backlash from general public, for students like Isak Brayfindluy, it’s simply too little too late.

“Sure, they retracted a lot of the things they said they would do, but it doesn’t matter,” Brayfindluy said. “[Microsoft] blatantly displayed their willingness to screw over their customer base, so PS4 all the way.”

Still, it hasn’t been an entirely smooth ride for the PS4 since its release on Nov. 15. With the PS4’s North American release, Sony has been receiving complaints about what customers are calling the “blue light of death”, an indication of a faulty, non-functioning console. Sony, however, insists that what it projects to be a less than 1% failure rate, is nothing t to worry about. “This is within our expectations for a new product introduction, and the vast majority of PS4 feedback has been overwhelmingly positive,” Sony said in a public statement. “We are closely monitoring for additional reports, but we think these are isolated incidents and are on track for a great launch.”

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