Why The Next Gen Will Disappoint Many

Why The Next Gen Will Disappoint Many


Not too long ago the Wii U launched and quite a few people, me included, were left a little bit disappointed with what it had to offer as the specs were not really that impressive when compared to what is offered on the PS3 and Xbox 360. I even wrote an article in which I addressed some of the shortcomings of the Nintendo’s new console.

Though the point might be lost on some, the main issue I have with the Wii U is that it’s really not doing anything next-gen so to speak. Sure it may be on par or slightly ahead of the PS3 and Xbox 360 in the graphics department, but graphics can only take you far. My main gripe with the Wii U is that it seems to be nothing more than just a continuation of the status quo, a bunch of generic games with decent graphics.

Wii U New

shooters

Close enough…

Looking at the majority of games we have on the market today, it’s pretty easy to see how similar they are to each other. Nowadays, I don’t buy shooters anymore simply for the fact that I’ve run out of ways to fool myself into thinking that this shooter is really different from the previous one that I got bored with. I can no longer justify paying $60 plus taxes per game, and having the experience be the exact same. This is one of the many reasons why I fear that the Next Generation will leave many gamers disappointed, not because the consoles won’t be any good, but because the developers and publishers will let us down similar to how they did so this gen.

For a while there, I really believed the hype that, so often, the PC crowd scream from the top of their lungs. You know, they say it’s the “outdated and weak specs” of the consoles that is responsible for the type limitations we see, and also for the number of rehashes we’ve been getting this gen. But then, when asked to elaborate on superior games that on the PC, they only touts graphics cards and 60 fps this and X times resolutions that, and mouse and keyboard is superior blah blah blah…. Ok great, but I’m still bored of Call of Duty whether it’s running at 60 fps with 4k resolution, or whether it is scaled down to console specs. No one mentions the fact that the AI  and physics remains the same, and that’s what got me worried that next generation will surely be just more of the same. The Wii U is taking all the flack because it is first to the market, plain and simple.

PC Gaming Desktop

Now please don’t interpret this as me saying that there exist no games on the PC where the AI isn’t fantastic. No, what I’m saying is that such games are very few and far between, and that is a real shame. Given the amount of resources available to PC Devs making PC Games, you would think that it would be the other way around, but sadly, graphics seems to take top priority on everyone’s list. And the culture is the same on consoles. Looking at what we know so far of The Last of Us, it’s baffling that this is only happening at the end of the generation. Why other devs never pushed for similar AI in their games beats me. I’m not saying that every developer can achieve the graphical fidelity of games like Uncharted, Killzone, MGS4, Gears of War, or Halo 4, but surely they can make  games that are not the exact carbon copy of what is already out on the market, no?

There is a big cry from developers that this generation of consoles have gone on too long, and that it is time to get new consoles out.
But if you look at the PC market, where specs-wise, the sky is the limit, where are those games that are supposedly doing things vastly different from what we have on consoles? Surely the PC games sport better graphics, but that’s about it really. The AI is still the same as what you find on consoles and the physics are still vastly similar; so the idea that new consoles with better specs will fix a creatively bankrupt industry is just a massive illusion.

Journey

The Walking Dead 1There is a reason why this year’s best games were Journey (an Indie downloadable game) and The Walking Dead (another downloadable game which took a few pages from the successful Heavy Rain Sony Exclusive). This simple fact tells you that gamers are hungry for something different, something fresh. It doesn’t need to be the most graphically intensive game; it only needs to be a unique, unpredictable experience.

I believe that this generation of consoles along with the PC have proven that the industry’s imagination have been far surpassed by its technology. Even scarier is the fact that this a trend that is being funded by publishers, and being embraced by the media whose jobs it is help sell it to us.

What is your take on this? Do you believe that the next generation of consoles will bring us new experiences beyond just prettier graphics?

7 Comments
  1. Date: December 19, 2012
    Author: Tom
    Good common sense article. Was a pc gamer since their were pc games but after spending countless thousands on new video cards, computers I decided it was just easier to get a console. The Xbox and Xbox 360. I found I was spending more time fiddling with graphic settings or the right drivers than playing the actual games. Pc games do look slightly better but Im happy being a console gamer playing on a 55" screen. [Reply]
    • Date: December 19, 2012
      Author: Roger Brown
      I'm a PC gamer playing at 60fps 1080p native on my 50" from my recliner. [Reply]
  2. Date: December 19, 2012
    Author: Glen Clark
    Im impressed with both of you. [Reply]
  3. Date: December 19, 2012
    Author: Nathan
    I think it's possible for new experiences to happen. I think the wads of money in the developers' pockets are what's holding the games back. Everyone complains about the clones and carbon copies, and yet we still buy them (and watch them if you've noticed movies are doing the same thing) over and over again. I think where video games SHOULD go next is augmented reality--opening up the gaming world around you, not just on your TV. The Wii U controller seems perfect for that, with its built-in screen that could be rotated around you for a 360 degree view in your living room to complement the experience going on in your TV screen. I don't think we'll be seeing too much of that because innovation is hard, and making copies of stuff already out is easy, but I do think it's possible and it's what I hope for in my future gaming. Maybe tablets will go that route before the consoles do. [Reply]
  4. Date: December 20, 2012
    Author: guy faust
    crap article never rely on machines. they are dumb rely on people making the games like Shinji Mikami, Kojima, Miyamoto, Naughty Dog, Platinum, Treasure. Santa Monica, [Reply]
  5. Date: December 23, 2012
    Author: Solid Snake
    Actually it's about smart architectural design & smart software optimization which has been proven effective for even current generation hd consoles for example to handle a considerable scale of physics,animations,ai etc...on screen at once & extend their performance capabilities & products life cycle. P.S..Thanks to mad software technology geniuses like euclidean who have made an incredible software technology solution leap beyond anything yet achieved in gaming to date just further validates it. Unlimited Detail Real-Time Rendering Technology Preview 2011: http://youtu.be/00gAbgBu8R4 Euclideon & Unlimited Detail - Bruce Dell Interview by John Gatt: http://youtu.be/hxtuZE5pOGA Merry Christmas & Happy New Year Everyone! [Reply]
  6. Date: December 26, 2012
    Author: Neo
    The difference between this gen and next gen in terms of horsepower is gonna be the difference you see between a i3 and i7 pc. Not what u saw moving from ps2 to ps3. But Sony did promise 10 years for the ps3 so we talking 2016 here. [Reply]
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