|Sega's Dreamcast: the last good console ever. This is fact...|
To illustrate that point, I've never owned a Microsoft system, I had a PS2 for a short while, but only after a friend gave me it and I still barely used it, I bought a GameCube only for the Burnout games, and as I've talked about here before I bought a PS3 almost exclusively for its Blu-Ray playback abilities. This is pretty much the extent of my post-Dreamcast gaming activity.
|Someone has etched 'PS4' onto these roof slates...|
The news that neither machine would be backwards-compatible was an unwelcome blow but Microsoft's machine had it worse to start with. It wasn't well received at its unveiling where it was presented as an 'all in one' multimedia machine - a jack of all trades if you will - and many hardcore gamers felt abandoned. Something else that made big news was Microsoft's new policy that tied each game disc to one users account; try to play the disc on another account and a fee has to be paid first. This has basically destroyed the ability to lend a game to your friends and has also damaged the second-hand market which is such an invaluable lifeline to many non-rich gamers (much of my collection is pre-owned, for example).
|This shot impressed me I have to say...|
Many stuck up gamers already considered Sony's machines to be more prestigious and so would buy the PS4 regardless of practically any possible drawbacks, and it did seem to be the most gamer-friendly option, but it still wasn't perfect. It seems Sony do not share Microsoft's desire to create the ultimate 'set top box' - audio CD's and MP3's apparently don't work on it for one thing, and it shares the Xbox's 500GB storage space which might sound a lot until you find that Sony's machine will use around one fifth of that straight away for its firmware. It will also be necessary to install every game, and the remaining storage space will be sufficient for about 14 games. Is that enough? That's not even taking into account the inevitable deluge of 'updates', not to mention any other stuff you might want to download such as PSN games, demos, movies, etc.
|An unnecessarily-bulky CD player?|
The games, too, will no doubt still take longer than 80's cassette-based games to get up and running, and I'm confident they will offer even less innovation; the list of launch titles, for example, features mostly sequels - Assassin's Creed, Need For Speed, Call of Duty, Battlefield, Killzone... all IP's that made their start on the previous generation (or even longer ago than that). Plus, what launch would be complete without the latest 'updates' of all the EA Sports games? Even if the games were interesting, they'll still be a tremendous pain in the arse to play, to their full potential at least. There's no longer any point in being a console owner as far as I can see - the whole point of them is supposed to be whole plug n play thing but they're just as much of a pain as PC's now.
So, as far as I can tell, the PS4 and Xbone (tee hee!) are little more than blah, blah, blah. I suppose I'm hardly impartial but I couldn't help but be slightly amused at all the vitriol they seemed to be receiving - "Could this finally be the day when the good, decent people finally realise the futility of their hollow pursuit?" I thought of exclaiming before not. All over Facebook and Twitter were people listing the many reasons why they wouldn't be buying the machines. I rejoiced unto the night.
|This guy knows the score (innit)...|
Have these people forgotten so fast the contempt they had apparently manifested toward Sony and Microsoft? Lord knows but I guess I'll just leave them to their Assassins's Creed 28, FIFA '14 November Edition, Call of Duty: Grimsby Takeaway Siege, and whatever else they deem to be the next evolutionary step in gaming, but I don't think I can understand such excitement, not to mention subsequent expenditure, purely for the sake of slightly better graphics. Perhaps I'm a bit of a hypocrite - I did after all get just as hyper about the MegaDrive, Saturn, and Dreamcast launches, but this time around I just don't get it - is it just the buzz that usually surrounds the release of new hardware, because beyond that I really can't see much to get excited about. I think the guy in the last picture above sums up my thoughts on the matter...