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Microsoft: both PS4 and Xbox One will "sell a ton", online hate "needs to go away"

"We all should be celebrating a healthy vibrant industry."

This morning it was revealed that the Xbox One was December 2013's best-selling home console in North America. In related news, the internet has become a cauldron of fire. Now, Microsoft's PR chap Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb has taken to Reddit to applaud PS4's success, calling for diehards on both sides to cool their jets.

According to Nelson, we should all just be glad that the consoles are selling well, whichever machine we favour. "Both new platforms are off to a great start," he wrote. "We all should be celebrating a healthy vibrant industry. Sony has done a good job and they should be commended. The hate that infects gaming in the online space needs to go away." Daww.

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"Sony will sell a ton," Hryb added down the page. "We will sell a ton. The industry is doing well...and consumers have choice."

This echoes recent comments to OXM by Microsoft Studios headman Phil Spencer, who said of Sony that he "really respects their focus on investing in new things and creative things". Spencer also had praise for Nintendo, observing that "their first-party is such an amazing asset."

There was certainly room for doubt about the fortunes of both Xbox One and PS4 last year, given slumping sales of big budget console blockbusters. As Bioshock Infinite designer Shawn Elliot told OXM last January, "where games are at now - the big budget games - you have the potential to be extraordinarily and unpredictably successful, but the risk, the bet you're taking is that you can also fail utterly."

Some argued that the general sales decline had more to do with the age of the supporting platforms. Others claimed, however, that consumers had simply fallen out of love with the idea of a console full stop - lured away by powerful smartphones and tablets. Fortunately, the optimists appear to have prevailed: Microsoft has now sold well over three million Xbox One units worldwide.

The problem of "online hate" is another kettle of fish, of course. I spoke to a number of developers about how they deal with toxic rancour back in 2012. The answers in brief: angry people may shout louder, but they aren't the majority, and the situation is improving.

In the spirit of Nelson's remarks, here's your agenda for the afternoon: find a PS4 or Wii U owner and give him or her a nice, big hug. I'll start by hugging Joe Skrebels, former OXM intern turned Official Nintendo news editor - hopefully, he won't think I'm just trying to steal his wallet.

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