Blog / Reviewing the Playstation 4

How do you review a game console?

I don’t envy the editors assigning a score to the Playstation 4. The device works basically as advertised: it plays PS4 games and Blu-Ray movies. You can watch Netflix, go online and browse the web, the usual. It’s possible to critique the UI, how the controller feels, and any bugs you find. We’re all used to our consoles having day one updates, so no sense griping about that.

But we don’t grade consoles like games. The Nintendo DS had a terrible launch and went on to be a huge seller. The Wii confounded critics but dominated the first half of last generation. Look at the interface for the Xbox 360 at launch compared to today. Heck, look at the size of the modern PS3 compared to its original incarnation!

We grade consoles by the fun they provide and how meaningfully their new features allow new experiences. It’s like judging a car by how much fun you had on a road trip. Assuming the car doesn’t break down, how do you assign a number to that? Why not a font styling? I do love the meme about the PS4 being italics and the Xbox One being bold.

That’s as meaningful of a review as I can imagine.