The strangest thing about Xbox One's journey over the past twelve months-from a Kinect-centric, digital-focused gauntlet thrown at the used games industry to a more familiar disc-based, stripped down $399 box-is just how familiar that arc is. Think back to E3 2006, and you'll find another titan of the game console business making many of the same choices and take-backs, only then it wasn't Microsoft. It was Sony.
The PlayStation 3 began life much like the Xbox One, a console sold as a modern media hub meant to do all things for all audiences and priced well above the competition. Also like Xbox One, Sony was forced to strip features out and sell PS3 for $100 less than launch price within a year. (Sony held out a little longer actually. Xbox One drops price in the June following release, while PlayStation 3 waited until the following August.)
What's the lesson here? PlayStation 3 went on to become a spectacular console despite a tumultuous first year defined by its bad reputation and sales slower than its rivals. It is a model not just for Xbox One's life to date, but its potential future. Which is why we're looking back on Sony's third home machine in the fourth week of our great E3 2014 giveaway.
If you want to win 14 free PlayStation 3 games, write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line "E3 Giveaway Week 4" before 10AM EST on Monday, May 19 and tell us which E3 was the year PlayStation 3 truly came into its own and why that's your pick. One random winner will get the lot.
What 14 PlayStation 3 games will one lucky winner get their hands on? The full list and contest rules after the jump.