For the first time, both PlayStation and Xbox have both released two different consoles at the start of a new generation. Xbox’s Series X and Series S are completely different. Different specs, different sized SSDs, and different capabilities. PlayStation didn’t opt for anything quite as drastic. Just a regular PS5 and an alternative one without a disc drive. The drive-less PS5 can only play digital versions of games but comes in at a cool $100 less than the regular edition.
The price difference will have a lot of you opting for the digital edition of PS5. We definitely get that. It’s a tough decision all of us here at TheGamer have had to make ourselves. However, even though it costs quite a bit more, opting for the version of the console on which physical games will still work is the better option for a number of reasons.
Wave Goodbye To Your Physical PS4 Library
For starters, everyone who owns a PS4 will have one with a disc drive. That’s because a digital-only PS4 was never released. Even though digital downloads of games have been a thing for a while, chances are you have at least a few physical copies of PS4 games. Those games will be unplayable on a digital PS5 as there is no disc drive. Any digital downloads can be transferred across to the new next-gen console in a number of ways, but any that require a disc will obviously need a disc drive.
Games won’t be the only issue when it comes to playing physical media on a PS5. Anyone with movies on Blu-ray or Ultra HD Blu-ray discs will need a PS5 in order to play them and make the most out of them. While buying physical copies of games is still considered normal, buying movies on disc might seem downright strange to some. However, there are some movies that are just better when in 4K, something streaming services don’t offer. Plus, Ultra Blu-Ray players cost more than $100, so that’s already money potentially saved.
Making Up That Extra $100 Elsewhere
You would have thought physical copies of games would cost more than digital versions. The extra cost that comes with creating the packaging and shipping them off around the world should drive up the price. However, that doesn’t appear to be the case. Top titles can take a long time to have their prices reduced on the PS Store, while physical copies for sale elsewhere are subject to price cuts far quicker. Take Marvel’s Avengers, for example. The game is still full price on the PS Store. On Amazon, the price of a physical copy is dropping fast. Unsurprising considering the fall in its player count since it launched.
One final caveat for anyone who plans on cashing-in on the next-gen upgrades being offered by developers for free. If you bought Avengers, Fifa 21, Spider-Man: Miles Morales, and a myriad of other games on PS4, you can claim a next-gen version of the game for free. However, if you have the physical version of those games, you’ll need a PS5 with a disc drive in order to download and play them on the new console.
Between saving money on physical copies of games, not needing to buy an Ultra Blu-ray player, and not having to re-buy any PS4 games you need digital versions of, that $100 will soon be saved elsewhere no matter how you plan on using your PS5. The video game industry has taken another step towards leaving discs behind this generation, but truth be told, there are still plenty of benefits to buying physical games this generation.
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- TheGamer Originals
Josh has been gaming for as long as he can remember. That love began with a mild childhood addiction to the Sega Genesis, or Mega Drive since he lives in the UK. Back then, Sonic 2 quickly became his favorite game and as you might have guessed from his picture, the franchise has remained close to his heart ever since. Nowadays, he splits his time between his PS4 and his Switch and spends far too much time playing Fortnite. If you’re a fan of gaming, wrestling, and soccer, give him a follow on Twitter @BristolBeadz.
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