2022 is going to be a solid year for gaming. With major titles like Elden Ring and Horizon Forbidden West on the…erm…horizon, as well as big releases like Saints Row planned for later in the year, there’s never been a better time to be a gamer. With that said, you’ve got plenty of choice for which machine you buy to act as your daily gaming driver. We’d recommend getting all of them, of course, but this isn’t always possible.
With that in mind, then, which of the three major options should you buy: Xbox, PS5, or Nintendo Switch? Well, we’re here to help you with that decision. All three options have different advantages and disadvantages, and some of them may be deal-breakers for you. Here’s our buyers’ guide to which console you should pick up if you want to maximise your gaming experience in 2022.
The first and most important thing you should consider when you’re buying a new gaming platform is the games that are available for it. Platforms like gamerbolt.com can help you to discover the latest releases, and of course, which of the platforms you prefer will depend on what your personal preference for games is. Let’s take a look!
The biggest string to Xbox’s bow when it comes to games is the Xbox Game Pass service. You can subscribe to it for a little less than £10 a month, and it’ll grant you access to a wide variety of games that you can download and play at no additional cost. Game Pass tends to have lots of underrated and under-the-radar games, so check it out if you prefer quantity rather than strict quality.
Sony’s business model is all about netting huge exclusives and using them as a way to convince people to buy PlayStation consoles. That’s why you’ll see huge PlayStation-only titles like Demon’s Souls and Horizon Forbidden West up for sale. If you like massive triple-A productions and you’re not too bothered about a relatively slow release schedule, the PS5 is the console for you.
The Switch reads like a cross between the two aforementioned consoles. It’s got a huge library of carefully-curated indie games, and it’s also got big triple-A releases like Super Mario Odyssey and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. The Switch makes an excellent second console; you probably won’t want to use it as your main driver, but it’s a great handheld to have around when you want to play without settling in for a huge session.
We’re currently in the middle of a chip shortage, which means that components for consoles are hard to come by right now. As such, all three major console manufacturers’ machines might be hard to find in the shops, but we’re working on the assumption that you’re able to get lucky and grab one.
The current Xbox lineup has two models available: the Series X and the Series S. As you can imagine, the Series X is the powerful flagship model; it has specs to rival (and in some cases even exceed) the PS5, and it’s all about playing games at 4K resolution and 60fps, even though many games can’t quite reach that yet. Conversely, the Series S is a smaller, less powerful machine that’s perfect for Xbox Game Pass games. The Series X is a better main console, but the Series S makes an excellent second machine.
Unlike the Xbox consoles, the PS5 only has one set of specs, but there are still two versions of the console up for grabs. Like the Xbox Series S, the PS5 Digital Edition doesn’t have a disc drive, but it does have the same specs as the base PS5, which also comes with a 4K Blu-ray slot. Which one you prefer is entirely down to whether you have a physical media collection or not.
The Switch currently has three models available on the market. First, there’s the base Switch, which comes with a TV dock and can either be played in handheld or docked mode. There’s also the Switch Lite, which is a handheld-only console that can’t be docked, and the Switch OLED model, which has an improved screen and other hardware (although no performance boosts into the mix). Again, which one you prefer will depend on whether you play your Switch in handheld or docked mode more often, but we’d recommend the OLED model.
If none of the console options are looking particularly appealing to you, then you may wish to consider getting into PC gaming. It’s a less cost-effective option; building a decent gaming PC is going to set you back at least £1000 if not more, and a top-of-the-range machine will cost you a few thousand pounds at the very least. However, PC gaming is also arguably more versatile than console gaming; you can endlessly tweak settings and options until you find the configuration that appeals to you, and there’s a huge range of games available, from the early days of gaming all the way up to the very latest titles.
As you can see, we can’t really tell you exactly what console you should buy; it will come down largely to your personal preference. However, on a broad basis, here’s our recommendation. If you like to play a lot of games and you don’t mind trying new ones, buy yourself an Xbox. If you prefer to play only a handful of major triple-A releases in a year, then the PS5 is your machine, and if you like to play games on the move or while you’re travelling, the Switch is a no-brainer.