The number of controllers a console accepts at once has been a reasonably static quantity since Nintendo paved the way for four player local multiplayer gaming with the Nintendo 64. Sure, the PlayStation 3 could theoretically accept up to seven controllers at once, but that was not a capability that was ever truly utilized, so it was functionally a useless feature.
Microsoft, however, looks set to top Sony on that front by allowing the Xbox One to be connected to up to eight controllers at once. That’s one more than Sony and the PlayStation 3, folks.
VideoGamer reports that the figure comes straight from the Xbox website, which also confirmed a 30 feet range for each controller (similar to the Wii U controllers). The Xbox One will achieve wireless controller functionality using a new IR technology standard that Microsoft is using for the console.
The Wii U allows up to five controllers to be connected to it at once, although only one of them can be the Wii U Pad, while the rest all have to be standard controllers (Wii Remote, Wii Remote w/ Nunchuk, Classic Controller, Classic Controller Pro, Wii U Pro). It is unclear how many controllers Sony will allow on the PlayStation 4, although it is reasonable to expect the number will be at least seven.