Microsoft still hasn't made the case for Xbox Series X

Let’s get the obvious comparison out of the way, now that we can compare the summer’s two great trailer showcases – separated this year by six weeks rather than the usual day and a half: Sony edged it.

Neither PlayStation nor Xbox delivered a slam dunk when making the software case for their new hardware launches this year. Stripped of the wheeler-dealing, jostle and theatricality whipped up by the industry’s convergence on Los Angeles for E3 in a normal year, there was a sense of hesitancy about both showings, with many exclusive properties and first-party studios not ready to take the virtual stage, and most big third-party publishers declining to lend their weight to either side. We saw a lot of indie games – great for representing the true diversity of the medium, not so good as ammunition in a hype war. We didn’t get a decisive megaton announcement from either.

Still, Sony was more convincing. It had, in Resident Evil Village, the patronage of one storied third-party franchise (just the one). It had a few arresting curveballs, like Ghostwire: Tokyo, Pragmata and Little Devil Inside, plus a spectacular remake of Demon’s Souls for the gaming cognoscenti. The PlayStation Studios exclusives felt that little bit closer and more tangible than their Xbox counterparts, especially in the impressive gameplay footage of Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart and Gran Turismo 7. It had a simple pitch: if you want to play these games, buy a PlayStation 5.