The State Of Play: The Video Games Industry, My Own Opinion

After a good month or two experiencing the “Next-Gen” of gaming I find myself on a hot and humid day wondering about where the video games entertainment industry is heading and what is it like right now?

We are currently in the opening stages of the new generation of consoles, namely the Xbox One and the Playstation 4 with the Wii U bringing up the rear at this point, but when the games for the Wii U are out im sure it’ll be more prominent in the collective consciousness of gamers everywhere, at least, far more than it is now, until that time arrives I will be concentrating on the PS4 and Xbone.

So what seems to be the leader so far in terms of numbers and fan favourite? Well, the PS4, on both counts. Partly down to the utterly dreadful Reveal at E3 with one miss-step after the other, ranging from the supposed restriction of having to connect to the internet every 24 hours or being unable to trade in games unless the publisher allowed it etc. Which lets face It, that would happen only once in a blue moon, how anyone at Microsoft thought they were good strategies to implement is beyond me.

This demonstrated a level of obscene arrogance on their part, trying to wrestle consumer control back into their hands so they could better control what the consumer can do, the equivalent of yanking the choke chain on the dog.

These day things are quite a bit different, those stupid DRM restrictions, gone, Kinect 2.0 having to always be connected, gone, and quite a few more decision were reversed to appease the terrible PR that the company and the system had been getting, has it worked? Sort of, it will take time for things to really take hold and the for the perception to improve enough that they will be on level footing with Sony, which is a little bit of a shame as the Xbone is a good system in my opinion, it deserved a better thought out launch and better people behind it than it initially did.

So with that utterly terrible start by Microsoft, Sony would have had to be staffed full of idiots to not take advantage of the situation and get the majority of “Core” gamers on their side. Which they did as you see them as the front-runner despite having a paper-thin library of games so far, although to be fair it is the opening year of both systems so it’ll get a pass on that.

This console war is only just getting started, but to my mind its gotten incredibly bland, really fast. Yes we have a great many options to share “clips” of gaming or to stream your efforts on twitch.tv etc. What if you’re not interested in “Broadcasting Yourself”? Not a whole lot there unless you plan on watching TV on something I would have thought that you bought to play games.

So the innovation has to come with what the developers can create with the tools given to them, and in this day and age the pressure to deliver games “now” has never been higher. Just think about that, we have been spoiled by having an extraordinarily long console cycle in the 360 and PS3, which amassed an enormous catalogue of games. That however took upwards of 6+ years, each new console cycle needs time to bed in, I just hope studios can resist pumping out inferior products to meet a rabid impatient fan base. Although that might be on the horizon also because Sony has been discussing early access gaming which would let you buy the game in its latest playable state (Full Price) and play with it during its development stage.

The problem with this is that many of the games that do this on steam already don’t get finished, and surely it promotes a certain type of laziness as they’ll push out whatever early build they have and charge full price for it. Although kudos to any publisher/studio that adjust their prices accordingly to the state of the games.

As for the whole 1080p versus 900p resolution “debates” where the PS4 can pump at 1080p high-def and the bone struggle a bit more, this argument is as old as the trees. PS3 to the 360, Nintendo 64 to the PS1 and so forth. it’s all best ignored and to be judged on the games individual merits, not about its processing power and nifty lighting trick etc. It all harps back to “Bit Wars” of yester-year, it was stupid the,n and it is stupid now.

And that’s your lot, I hadn’t written anything in a while so I figured an opinion piece would be the best thing to do.

Hope it wasn’t toooo rambling!

Thanks for reading

Dave

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