Next-gen consoles!

Here’s something off-topic I’ve been thinking about the past few weeks.

Any console gamers here?

I play console games. A LOT. Enormous collection and all that. I have pretty much every console since the PlayStation 1 era except Dreamcast, and that includes Nintendo and Sony handhelds except for the original Gameboy (which I don’t need) or the PSP-Go.

Microsoft and Sony are ready to launch their next consoles next month (PS4 on the 15th, XB1 on the 22nd). I’ve leaned more towards the XBox 360 this generation, going to PS3 only for its exclusives (Uncharted, God of War, etc). I like the feel of the 360 controller far better than the DualShock 3. Plus, I like being able to swap out and charge rechargeable batteries rather than having to charge the entire controller. (I don’t sit close enough to my TV to make corded play or charge-while-playing practical.) PS3 is sooooo sloooow when it comes to downloading system updates or game patches. What takes 20 seconds to download and install on the 360 takes a whopping 15 minutes (no exaggeration) on PS3 for the same thing. I like the 360 interface. I have sound issues through my stereo on the PS3. My friends are on the 360, not the PS3. The list goes on.

I counted Microsoft out entirely when the XB1 was announced. Since I collect games and dip heavily into the used game market to do so, their restriction on used games was a killer for me. They’ve since reversed that (and pretty much every other decision regarding their original announcement), but it still leaves me a little skeptical.

I have both consoles pre-ordered on Amazon. In fact, the extra DualShock 4 I ordered already arrived, well in advance of the console’s release. I have to say, it does feel nice. I hated how the thumbsticks were too close together on the PS3, and they’ve moved them a little farther apart for the PS4, but IMO, it could have been more. Still, it feels good. I could get used to it.

I’m more interested in the launch games for the PS4. I’d rather have Knack and KillZone than Dead Rising 3 and Ryse. Form multiplat, I’m disappointed that Watch Dogs was pushed back, but I’m looking forward to next-gen Assassin’s Creed IV at launch. I like what I’ve seen about The Order 1886 and Infamous Second Son, and my favorite game of the past few years (The Last of Us) is from a Sony-exclusive developer. I just played Beyond: Two Souls, from another developer who seems to be Sony-exclusive, and it’s about as close to interactive fiction as you’ll find from a AAA title.

Most of the other games I want will be cross-platform anyway.

Factor in $100 less than the XB1, Vita remote play, reportedly higher processing power, and some interesting indie titles, and I’m starting to think I don’t need the XB1. Maybe after launch. Maybe after I’ve recovered from the $$$ hit I’ll take just by getting started with PS4. Maybe later. I’d hate to miss out on Swery’s D4, for instance (loved Deadly Premonition – so awesome).

Anybody getting a new console next month at launch? If so, which are you going for? I keep postponing the day I’ll cancel my XB1 pre-order, but unless I can come up with some really good reasons to justify it, I think the day is coming.

I’d rather stay with my PS3… I’m not a console gamer, and I rue console-exclusive games. That said, I bought my PS3 exclusively for Heavy Rain (and of course I have bought other games since), and am really looking forward to getting Beyond, and if Rayman Legends had stayed console-exclusive I’d have gotten that for the PS3 as well.

What I hate about the consoles is that they become obsolete just like that, and games are seldom backwards-compatible, so either you keep buying new ones or you’re screwed. With a computer you can at least upgrade the parts, and a computer can play all sorts of games, even emulate older consoles. A console can only play… well, what it’s supposed to play. It’s stifling. And expensive.

My biggest fear is that the launch version of any console seems to be the worst version. Aside from later PS3’s losing backwards compatibility with PS2, and maybe later Wii’s losing GameCube compatibility, there always seems to be hardware issues or reasons to wait for an updated model. My original “fat” PS3 is a beast. Some of the horrible online speeds I see may be due to that, and the super-loud fan that revs up on games like The Last of Us probably doesn’t happen as much with newer models. Even my 3DS – which I bought before the big price-drop a few months later – is kind of obsolete now that the 3DS XL is out there.

But I’m a sucker for new stuff.

On the subject of Beyond, I really enjoyed it. But it’s getting mixed reviews. I don’t share a lot of the criticism I’ve heard – I really enjoyed it – but it’s not for everyone. Even fans of Heavy Rain have panned it.

I got a PS2 soon after its launch, and then a PS3 pretty soon after its. In both cases I expected a reasonable number of console-exclusive games that I wanted to play.

I wound up playing a lot of PS2 games, but fewer on the PS3. The big-game industry has just moved away from what I’m interested in, overall. (There are exceptions; the PS3 wasn’t a total waste.)

(I also got a Wii, but I’ve barely used it.)

However, for the next cycle, I’m expecting more interesting games out of the PC world than the console world. So I plan to skip the consoles entirely.

My secret hope is that SteamBox hardware will turn out to be a way to play what are now Windows-only titles, without going through the scarification ritual of “I got a Windows box but just to play games on.” (Did that ten years ago; very much not worth the pain.)

That Steambox controller is pretty wild. I’m not much of a PC gamer anymore though. It’ll run on Linux, right? So it kind of depends on how well developers start to support Linux?

I’ve had a 360 and enjoyed it. I am famous for getting games and never completing them. I’ve only just seen the intro to Skyrim. I did manage to get through the main quest and some DLC on Fallout 3. Loved Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite.

That said, the XBOne doesn’t look that interesting to me yet. I’m not into it hardcore enough to buy it at launch price.

The thing I have considered is grabbing a PS3 when they drop to about 200, and playing the exclusives on there. Or I might just get a decent PC and play games off of steam.

If I go with anything, it will be a SteamBox. But that’s a big, fat “maybe”.

Despite having a ridiculous number of consoles in my house (a PS2, PS3, Wii, Wii U, and two Xbox 360s), we’re not planning to get the Xbox One or the PS4 until we see the Game We Can’t Live Without. The thing is, I’m happier playing almost any game* on my PC - so only an exclusive that I can’t bear missing will convince me to go shopping.

[size=85]* The exception: platformers. Rogue Legacy will be vastly improved by its console release, and until then, I have a PS3 controller hooked up to my computer.[/size]

Yes. I’m hoping that SteamOS turns out to be a large/attractive enough target to catch the interesting indie and medium-sized games. Any console-based “games I can’t live without” will either wind up on Mac (Portal, Bioshock) or I’ll see if I can live without them.

Perhaps The Last Guardian will ship and change my mind. No bets at this time. :confused:

I’ve about given up hope on The Last Guardian, despite continued rumors that it hasn’t been cancelled. Oh – I also picked up the HD versions of Shadow of the Colossus and Ico free with PS Plus, not too long ago. I don’t know if they’re still listed under the instant game collection or not.

I think Steambox will have a few advantages over the recent fad of Android-based consoles like Ouya and Gamestick (or whatever it’s called). One, it leverages a market that is already widely used. Two, people are used to getting full-sized games from steam, without the notion that everything needs to be free or under a dollar. I think this makes it a more viable platform for larger developers. And hey; Steam sales!!

Am I the only weirdo who thinks his next-gen system will be a WiiU? There’s a new Smash Bros, and I can catch up on a couple of previous Zelda titles, and maybe a Yoga Fit app would be nice.

The only thing Sony & MS really have that I’m interested in is Street Fighter. I guess I’m not much of a gamer anymore.

Oddly enough, you might be. The WiiU sales have been abysmal. I read that only 500,000 have been sold worldwide in the past six months. Contrast that to predictions that Sony and Microsoft will sell a combined 7,000,000 consoles during the launch window. Nintendo always seems to rebound, but I’m starting to worry about the WiiU. Third-party developers won’t make games for it because of a small install base and poor sales, yet gamers won’t buy the WiiU in part because it doesn’t have enough awesome titles to make it feel necessary. EA recently stated that their Wii/WiiU combined sales make up only 1.3% of their revenue. I read that on IGN or some place.

I like my WiiU, and I own about a dozen games for it. The only one I’ve played through is ZombiU. I loved it, but I haven’t felt the urge to play anything else yet. I’m looking forward to the next original Zelda title. The WindWaker HD is supposed to be great, but I kind of don’t want to play again after playing the GameCube version years ago. I’ll play Bayonetta 2 for sure, but it’s still a few months away I think.

I bought the same package a while back, mostly because I wanted to try out Ico, but I was severely let down. The controls are fidgety and the gameplay somehow annoying. After a half an hour or so of frustration I just gave up. Does it get better later on?

The gameplay of Ico remains the same, but I think it’s worth it for the scenery and the visual storytelling.

I’m not going to argue that you should force yourself through, though, if you don’t find yourself getting used to it.

I’ve heard other first-time Ico players say similar things. It just didn’t grab them. Seemed outdated. I played the original when it was new on PS2 (same with Shadow), and maybe just when it was has a lot to do with it. I played some of Ico HD but only a little, and I had no problem with the controls or fidgety gameplay. It’s how I remember it. It remains one of my favorite games of all time, so it’s a shame if it hasn’t aged well for people who didn’t get to play it the first time around.

Ahhhhh… Ico. And Shadow of the Colossus. :smiley:

I wouldn’t mind if every feather of the cat-bird thing from Last Guardian wasn’t individually wind-modelled, providing I can actually play the damn game.

Re: Ico, the controls have always been “serviceable”. Remember it’s primarily a puzzle game with action elements, rather than an action game with puzzle elements. Play it “slower” like when you have a long holiday weekend with little to do, and I think it’ll grow on you. It’s never been a game to wow someone right out of the box. It was “critically acclaimed but a commercial failure” for reasons.

The WiiU’s popularity will pick up after Smash is released, and again after a new Zelda. I doesn’t need to sell a zillion units at launch. They all said the Wii would fail when it’s weird controller was announced.

I hope that’s what happens. I think Nintendo can ride it out on the success of their handhelds for now, but if they give up on WiiU, I can’t see them successfully replacing it with anything else. If people aren’t biting now, I don’t think they’d bite even if Nintendo magically produced a new console on par with the next generation.

Another friend of mine “wants” a WiiU, but has been waiting. I told him about the price drop, but I think he’s still a holdout. My boss at work is kind of in the same boat, because he’s waiting on the next Zelda. And it sounds like that’s the problem. A lot of people “plan” to get one, but aren’t in a hurry to do so until their franchise of choice comes out.

Super Mario 3D World is less than a month away, and getting good press. Maybe it’ll spark some holiday spending.

The Wii proved them wrong, by selling a lot in its first year.

I’m right with you there. It was the original Bioshock that made me decide to stop upgrading the PC, switch to Mac, and get a 360 for “big” games. None of the launch titles are anything I need to have, and Steambox is going to be a definite monkey wrench to the consoles if Valve pull the marketing and implementation off well.