Saturday, November 15, 2014

The Fight for Second Place: Xbox One vs. Wii U

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In terms of sales, the PlayStation 4 is far ahead of its peers. Recent statistics show that Sony’s beastly machine has 40% more sales than Xbox One according to ArsTechnica. We believe that the ‘console war’ is now being fought between Nintendo’s Wii U and the Xbox One. It may get even more cutthroat as Microsoft’s CVP Yusuf Mehdi recently announced on Xbox Wire that Xbox One shipments to retailers are nearing 10 million. However, this does not give us any indication of consumer sales.

If we compare hardware, there is no question the Xbox One offers more power and graphical capability than the Wii U. The one thing favoring Nintendo’s little monster is that it is loaded with exclusives. Most recently, the stylish fighter ‘Bayonetta 2’ was released on the Wii U and became an instant hit and its 95/100 Metacrtic rating proves it. ‘Super Smash Bros.’ has already scored 85/100 rating on Metacritic and hopefully it will repeat the success when it releases on the Wii U on the 21st of November.

The Xbox One may not have as many exclusives as the Wii U but some of their best include ‘Forza Horizon 2’, ‘Sunset Overdrive’ and ‘Halo: Master Chief Collection’. This year’s biggest Xbox One exclusive was ‘Titanfall’. Unfortunately, its sequel is reportedly going multiplatform.

But are gamers always looking for exclusives? Some may argue that exclusives offer a unique selling point for consoles. However, since the launch of Xbox One and PS4 in November 2013, the multi-platformers performed better especially ‘Assassins Creed 4: Black Flag’, ‘Battlefield 4’, ‘FIFA 15’, ‘Destiny’ and ‘Watchdogs’. ‘Assassins Creed Unity’ is one of the hottest third-party titles going into the holiday season. ‘Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare’ has already scored 83/100 on Metacritic and is a smash hit.

None of these new multi-platform titles are making their way to the Wii U. However, this does not help the Xbox One either because some gamers may chose to play the multiplatform hits on the relatively powerful PS4. The PS4 has sold 13.5 million units according to Sony’s official figures and there were fewer exclusives released on it as compared to the multi-platform titles. Thus, both Nintendo and Microsoft will battle it out on exclusives.

According to a report by Tech Times in June, the Wii U is on second place. When speaking to the Seattle Times, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime said, “We think that the Wii U has a long and vibrant life in front of it. What it needs are games like Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros for Wii U and Splatoon - those types of games that can really drive the installed base. We believe if we can do that effectively the Wii U has a long and robust life”.

Microsoft Xbox division head Phil Spencer will need to make sure they have the quality of exclusives to match Nintendo otherwise they may fall behind in the console race. The hotly-anticipated ‘Halo 5: Guardians’ and ‘Quantum Break’ look promising and a new ‘Gears of War’ will be greatly welcomed by fans.

According to The Motley Fool, the Xbox One is “a lost cause”, but Mr. Mehdi will surely disagree! 


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