There was a lot of talking, but not a lot was actually said. Sony and Microsoft's press conferences were perfunctionary more than explosive (the latter being kept only for those in attendance) even with the announcements of PS4's release date and Microsoft's commitment to making sure that FIFA is played by every human being, ever.

Between them, both sets of executives probably said the word 'indie' more times than the phonetic equivalent in those moderately successful movies Harrison Ford starred in. Talking up the merits of smaller developers - and of their respective platform environments for them to create games in - is the latest pissing contest writ large, and in fairness the Redmond giant's desire to make sure your console is your dev kit is admirable. No certification fees is also a big change, and a positive one, and Sony's commitment to loaner dev kits - while not quite matching Microsoft's offer - is also welcome.

And then there was FIFA. A huge win for both MS and EA, it means - along with Ultimate Team Legends and other initiatives - that one of the most important games in the European market is now 'best on Xbox'. It's a win-win for both parties, too. Microsoft now has a major selling point for an audience who lives and breathes football, and EA has found a, potential, path to crank its sales figures even closer to that of Call of Duty. That's the level Electronic Arts has wanted to get FIFA to for years, completely forgetting about other games that could be seen as more 'direct' lines of competition. It's top of the pile or nothing.

Microsoft's was also the leaner of the two presentations, by some considerable margin. The US firm had two main messages, stuck to them, and got on with it. Its rival spent so much time blathering on that it felt like the PS4 should already be a year old by the end of it.

Problematic too for Sony is that its speakers aren't very interesting: killer if there's a long conference to sit through, and not great when you're trying to convey a message that your new games console is the raddest thing on the planet since plutonium-laced wrap-around sunglasses. Michael Denny looks and talks like your dad, Andrew House's voice sounds like he's got a slowly-leaking helium tank in there, and Jim Ryan looks and acts like the CEO of a successful accountancy firm who accidentally walked on stage and, too embarrassed to leave, decided to stay.

The only interesting one among them is Mark Cerny, but only because when he turns to read the autocue - looking down the lens as he does so - there's always the danger he'll snatch you into it like The Goblin King of games, and you'll have to escape by playing f**king Knack or something.

Still, the Vita stuff was cool, and an announcement of the release date is always good. In what is arguably a stark contrast to E3, though, Microsoft looked confident today.

And so they should.