The Sony PS4 will cost UK gamers £349 when it goes on sale later this year, which is £80 less expensive than the Xbox One UK price, announced earlier on Monday at E3.
The next-gen console, the design of which was finally showcased to a positive reaction from the pro-Sony crowd, will also place no restrictions on used game sales and will not require gamers to regularly check-in online to authenticate their identities.
Those announcements drew the biggest cheers of the day from EA attendees in Los Angeles and came as a direct response to Microsoft’s controversial decision to attach DRM licenses to games that will restrict owners ability to lend and trade games, as well as use their ability to use the console without an internet connection.
SCEA CEO Jack Tretton said the the PS4 will continue to let gamers trade-in, sell to another person, lend to friends, or keep for themselves and affirmed that the company “believes in the model that gamers embrace today.”
With regards to the spectre of constant online connectivity, Sony took some big shots at Microsoft by announcing that gamers will never need to connect to the internet in order to play local, disc-based games.
Tretton said: “You don’t need to be connected or need any type of authentication. We won’t require periodic online check-ins and the console won’t stop working if you haven’t authenticated within 24 hours.”
Naturally, the announcements were huge crowd pleasers, but could be hugely significant in deciding which of the Big Two wins the next-gen console war.
Another major announcement was the reveal of the console’s design, which Sony was widely mocked for skipping during its initial press event in February.
The new console is exceptionally sleek and slim compared to the gargantuan first PlayStation 3 design. It has a two-tone colour scheme, a slightly slanted, angular body and is designed to stand upright or lay flat.
One thing Sony didn’t announce during the two-hour address was a concrete release date for new console. Microsoft said the Xbox One will arrive in 21 countries in November but Sony has no far not shifted from it’s Holiday 2013 release window.
Another point worth making is that PS Plus subscriptions, will now be paid only, if gamers will to enjoy online multi-player action over the PSN.
That seems like a minor point at the moment though, as, with the design, cost and retention of the status quo in relation to online connectivity and used games, Sony has taken a giant leap towards winning the hearts of gamers excited for the next-gen era.