Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Ask just about any Linux user, and they’ll more than likely recommend VLC Player as the best choice for playing any media format you can think of. They have plenty of reasons to do so as VLC is indeed a fantastic piece of software with plenty of awesome features. But it only offers one implementation — a complete media playing package that uses its own technologies (such as its own hardware acceleration) as well as its own GUI.
In the spirit of Linux, you may wish to use something that’s a bit more modular. This way, you can use a single media decoder and then customize everything else about it.