COMMENTARY | The console wars aren’t over yet, and with all of the hype surrounding the Xbox One vs PS4 scuffle, it’s time we laid down some guidelines for what we expect.
Every new generation has introduced something new to the gaming industry, the most obvious of all being better graphics and visual effects. The NES wowed us with its ability to play games which scrolled across the screen and had a definite goal at the far end. The Super NES and Genesis gave us more depth to the graphics, and in Nintendo’s case we were introduced to rotating backgrounds.
The next generation console wars have always been about innovation in what the games could do. This time around, it seems there isn’t really much that’s new, aside from the DualShock 4’s touchpad controls and the Xbox One controller’s haptic feedback. That isn’t enough, though. Gamers are expecting something that’s going to blow their minds all over again. Prettier or more detailed graphics (or in the Xbox One’s case, a new focus on TV) isn’t going to be enough to convince us that the new consoles on the block are worth splurging on.
According to a poll by Reuters, and previously reported by The Inquisitr, a majority of gamers had no plans to buy a PS4 or Xbox One this Holiday season. It’s obvious that the economy being almost in ruins isn’t enough to dissuade gamers from putting money down on a new console, so why are so many people hesitating?
The Xbox One and PlayStation 4 just aren’t impressive enough. We expected more from them, or at least enough to compete with current high-end PC games.
Valve is stepping up to the plate with their Steam Machine consoles currently in the Beta phase and a controller that breaks the rules once again. What does the Steam Machine have that the more conventional consoles don’t? It plays the PC games that outshine them, and allows us to swap out parts for better performance in the future.
That could be enough to lead Valve to a quick victory in the next gen console wars, because they’re trying something that hasn’t been done before.
Most of the bigger titles currently available on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are literally higher definition ports of games we already have on the last generation consoles, and that’s really lazy. Call of Duty: Ghosts, Battlefield 4, a plethora of sports titles we’ve seen every year, and Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag are already on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, so we really don’t see a reason to buy them for more powerful consoles.
In retrospect, this is the least impressive of the console wars. The PS4 vs Xbox One scuffle of 2013 needed something a lot more innovative.