PS4 vs Xbox One: Sony and Microsoft pull out the stops for launch events

Sony’s new PlayStation 4 gaming console was launched overnight, with a number of major retailers taking the opportunity to hold midnight sales events for consumers and PlayStation fans. EB Games and Dick Smith both opened their doors for dedicated gamers, holding dress-up competitions and making the obligatory fuss over the first shoppers to get their hands on the console.

Speaking about the Dick Smith event, held in the retailer’s flagship George Street store, category buyer for gaming and movies, Brett Leyshon, said the fan support was “overwhelming”.

“The stroke of midnight marked the beginning of the PlayStation 4 era in Australia,” he said. “What better way to kick off the next generation of gaming than with our excited customers, two of whom won the trip of a lifetime to E3 2014 in LA.”

Michael Ephraim and Nick Abboud

Sony Computer Entertainment Australia managing director Michael Ephraim (left) and Dick Smith CEO Nick Abboud were at Dick Smith’s Sydney CBD store overnight flouting the first rule of gaming — always keep your eyes on the screen.

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Cosplay was a big winner last night — here’s Dick Smith’s winner for best fan costume… Lego Captain America.

EB Games’ national brand, engagement and events manager, Debra McGrath, was also positive about the retailer’s official launch event, held at EB Games Liverpool in Sydney’s south west last night.

“The atmosphere onsite was electric,” said McGrath. “It’s awesome to see the entire community come together to get involved and celebrate, particularly those who’ve never witnessed a console launch. Thousands of fans came out last night to witness and be a part of the beginning of a new generation, for both technology and the games community.

“The first pre-order for the next PlayStation was put down way back on the 5th of July, 2011 – this just demonstrates how much these fans love the Sony brand. We wanted to make sure we looked after them, and helped make their night memorable.”

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Queues were out the door at EB Games.

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Gamers get their first crack at the PlayStation 4.

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Nathan from EB Games guards the pile of consoles stacked behind the counter.

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Shoppers had the chance to pose with their new PlayStations alongside EB’s cosplay crew.

The fuss around the PS4 followed a high-concept launch event for Microsoft’s Xbox One last week. Microsoft went all out for its launch, lighting up the Sydney skyline with a certain shade of Xbox green, and inviting fans to a large-scale launch event to celebrate the new console. The Sydney launch mirrored other events across the world, which brought together the likes of Snoop Dogg and DJ Deadmau5 to bask in the console’s reflected glory.

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Sydney Harbour was lit up for the launch of the Xbox One.

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Another big investment from Microsoft, taking over Sydney’s Centrepoint Tower.

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Retail stores were filled with product in anticipation of the rush.

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Angela Tran and Francis King, the first customers in Australia to get their hands on the new console.

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Snoop Dogg shows his dedication to the brand at the US Xbox One launch.

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