Whether you are buying for yourself, loved one, family member, or your kids, video game systems are one of the most exciting gifts to receive. But with the three major choices out there, it can be confusing for those that don’t read the latest gaming magazines. I don’t read the latest gaming magazines, but I’ve played all three systems quite a bit, and I own an Xbox 360. So, here is a little guide for helping you decide which system to buy this holiday season.
The games are great, and the graphics are better. The insides of an xbox are basically a high-powered computer, and its abilty to process extremely complex graphics without hardly ever lagging is what makes Xbox so great. The Xbox live interface is also the best in my opinion. They have a great online marketplace, and the multiplayer servers work well.
The starter Xbox 360 is now going for $199, which will be very attractive for price-conscious buyers this holiday season. Just remember that this version does not come with an attached hard drive. The holiday pro bundle that comes with a 60gb hard drive is $299, and it should come with two games.
The biggest downfall for the Xbox 360 is that it runs like it’s going to blow up. Many users have experienced the dreaded “red rings of death”. When the Xbox overheats to the point that it damages the system, red rings around the power button show up, and you need to send in the Xbox to Microsoft to get fixed or replaced. Also, the accessories are very expensive. The wireless adapter is $99, but I suggest buying any accessories on ebay, craigslist, or discount site such as buy.com or amazon.com.
As far as prices goes, it’s the most expensive of the “big three” systems. You can pick up the 60gb hard drive version with two games and/or blu-ray discs for $399. The biggest advantage with the playstation 3 is that it plays blu-ray discs. So, if your family was looking to buy a blu-ray disc player this holiday season, and your kids want a new video game system, the PS3 is a great option.
Both the PS3 and Xbox 360 appeal more to teenage boys to middle-aged men. Titles like Call of Duty, Halo, and Gears of War are games that Nintendo’s graphics can’t keep up with and that is why so many teenagers prefer a PS3 or Xbox over the Nintendo Wii.
The Wii Experience is completely different than any other video game system you’ve ever played before. It appeals to three year olds up to 80 year olds. The reason is that Nintendo has the made the Wii extremely easy to use and the interactivity of it appeals to all generations. Plus, it’s a good workout. The boxing game is literally a good cardiovascular workout. And now Nintendo has rolled out the Wii Fit which actually helps you put together a homemade workout plan. You can do an entire yoga class without leaving your house.
The Wii costs a reasonable $249, and the accessories are reasonably priced as well. The games are $49 dollars, compared to $59 for Xbox and PS3 games. If you have an 8 year old who wants a video game system, choose the Wii. If you are wondering what to get a family member or friend who would be intrigued by something like the Wii, then it’s a good choice as a gift. But like I said, if you get your 16 year son a Wii, he might crave certain games that the Wii is not designed to play. Likewise, the Wii is a great joint gift for you and your spouse, but if you are a girl with no desire to play video games, then get your husband an Xbox or PS3.
This isn’t the kind of review guide that you’ll find on the latest technology blog, but it’s an honest analysis based on my opinions about these systems. If you are still confused, I would say go with the Wii. The reason it is so popular is because it appeals to all generations. The games are childish, but highly interactive. And remember, buy video games and accessories at wholesale prices on ebay, craigslist, stores that sell used games, and garage sales. You will save a fortune by saving money on the smaller stuff.