Gone are the days when fanboys of Microsoft’s Xbox could lay claim to Bungie as their developer.
The Washington based company known best for the Xbox-exclusive Halo series is currently preparing for the release of their latest sci-fi shooter, Destiny – and Xbox owners aren’t happy with Bungie’s decision to make Destiny on PS4 the flagship console for the title.
First there was the early Alpha access exclusive to PlayStation owners. Then on July 17, PS3 and PS4 owners were given exclusive access to the game’s Beta, while Xbox 360 and Xbox One owners were made to wait a further week before being granted the same privilege.
It was also announced earlier this year that PlayStation owners would be on the receiving end of exclusive Destiny downloadable content. And after that it became pretty clear that the PS4 would be the best console on which to play Destiny.
But that’s not all. The past few months have shed light on several more reasons why the Destiny experience on Xbox consoles simply won’t be as good as the PlayStation’s – and we’re going to take a look at why.
Downloadable Content for Destiny
We’ve mentioned it briefly, but it’s worth detailing just how much of a difference the exclusive DLC will make to the PS4 player’s Destiny experience compared to the Xbox One.
The benefits for PS4 owners will begin at the game’s launch on September 9, when they’ll receive instant access to additional multiplayer maps. This includes a co-op level named “Dust Palace Strike” and a Crucible map, “Exodus Blue”, along with numerous exclusive items of in-game gear, such as weapons and armor.
The Dust Palace Strike will allow three players to team up and fight through an ancient human skyscraper on the planet Mars, fighting new enemies that will be unseen in the Xbox version of the game.
Exodus Blue is a battle arena ideal for the control and skirmish multiplayer modes. Again, this will be totally unavailable for Xbox gamers.
It gets better, too. Bungie has also announced two, much more substantial add-ons: “The Dark Below”, to be released in December, and “House of Wolves”.
While these will be made available for owners of both Sony and Microsoft consoles, the PlayStation versions of both add-ons will include bonus content that will not be made available to Xbox owners until one whole year after the PlayStation release.
Taken from the PlayStation Blog:
As an added bonus for PlayStation platforms, the Destiny Expansion pass will also include additional exclusive content for Expansion I and II that will remain exclusive until at least Fall of 2015.
The additional content alone is enough to make owning Destiny on the PlayStation much better, but let’s see what else is making the difference.
Bungie’s Relationship with Sony
Until 2007, Microsoft was the parent company of Bungie, Inc., which explains why the developer’s titles were solely available on the Xbox and PC. Since the two parted ways, however, Bungie has forged a strong relationship with Sony – even offering assistance in the development of the PlayStation 4.
It was announced at E3 2014 that Bungie actually played a vital role in the development of the DualShock 4, back when the new and improved controller was in the design stage.
This new partnership is undoubtedly one reason why the developer has chosen the PlayStation consoles to receive the exclusive DLC, but it also promises other benefits in the future.
Bungie has confirmed that the PS4 is the lead platform for Destiny, which would suggest that the game has been primarily designed with the PlayStation 4 in mind.
That would make sense, considering Bungie has already played a part in the creation of the PS4. This likely means owning a PS4 copy of Destiny will provide a smoother and more seamless gaming experience.
Graphics on PS4 vs. Xbox One
Bungie’s development of Destiny using the PS4 as the lead console for development takes us onto our next point – the visuals. Reports have suggested that the architecture of Microsoft’s Xbox One has made it difficult for Bungie to optimize visual performance on the console.
The evidence of this came with the release of the game’s beta version. Destiny on PS4 was running at 1080p and was confirmed by Bungie to be visually better than the previous Alpha version. But this was not the case for Xbox owners.
The Xbox beta achieved a maximum of 900p, according to reports, which ultimately resulted in a poorer graphical experience. Owing both a PS4 and Xbox One, and having played the Betas on both console, it was noticeable.
Bungie has stated that they intend to fix this before the game is released, but the fact that the problem ever existed is yet another reason why the PS4 will be a better console on which to play the game. It’s great that the Xbox One will be reaching parity with PS4. But you have to wonder at what cost as the PS4 is the lead development platform.
The difference in graphics is likely to be small, but visuals are becoming ever more important with the new generation of consoles.
The Knock on Effect
The final reason why Destiny promises to be better on PlayStation 4 is ultimately because of the previous things we’ve mentioned.
With Bungie favoring the PlayStation and providing reams of exclusive DLC, many Xbox users are put off paying for the game – and furthermore it’s likely that the Xbox experience will be lesser without it.
Since the announcement of all the features unique to the PlayStation, the exclusive Alpha and also the earlier release of the Beta, Bungie has even had to reassure Xbox gamers that their version of Destiny will still be worth buying.
It’s already being predicted that the Xbox One will have fewer gamers in the multiplayer. Especially with Halo: The Master Chief Collection being Xbox One’s big PvP title. Plus the exclusive content on PlayStation consoles is actually causing some Xbox owners to jump ship to the PS4 version – that’s how much better it’s expected to be. And we didn’t even really talk about the gorgeous White PS4 Destiny Bundle.
All it really boils down to is one question: why would you want to play such an amazing game without access to all the additional content, lack of a bundle, and not being the lead development platform? With all these concerns, you have to wonder what will happen with Destiny 2, 3, and 4.
Owning Destiny on the PlayStation 4 guarantees the best gameplay, best multiplayer, exclusive content and the benefits of a blossoming relationship between Bungie and Sony.
Sorry Xbox gamers, the PlayStation wins this battle. For the time being, Destiny on PS4 is the best place to play.