The lights are on
I waited in line for my Xbox 360 at midnight after days of nail-biting over smaller than expected launch shipments. Was I going to get the console I preordered? Was I going to have to make a choice between a stripped down "core" system now or a standard system later?
Thankfully, all went well. I came home with Perfect Dark Zero and Kameo, and was surprised at which was the better game (hint: Kameo). I was excited for the upgraded Xbox Live experience. Over the coming weeks, I played nearly every launch title, happily consuming everything I could.
I don't feel that right now about the Xbox One or the PlayStation 4. Both companies have done a decent job competing with one another, but have failed to do something more important: explain why the jump to next-gen systems is as important this time as it was eight years ago.
A large part of what's driving my disappointment is the weakness in the launch lineups. Microsoft's heaviest hitters are on the bench. There's no Halo and no Gears of War. Unless Gamescom yields a Crackdown 3 announcement (something that has been teased since the console reveal in May), Microsoft is going to limp across the finish line in November (unless you like racing games or Dead Rising, which doesn't apply to me).
As for Sony, its brightest title, Infamous Second Son, will arrive in 2014. The Killzone series has been enjoyable, but it's not a system seller. Knack looks cute (and might surprise just like Kameo did on the Xbox 360), but I'm not sold enough to drop down $400 plus tax.
Beyond exclusives, there are a number of cross-generation games to consider. Call of Duty, Battlefield 4, Watch Dogs, and Assassin's Creed IV are all going to be available on current-generation consoles. There's no reason to upgrade to either the Xbox One or the PlayStation 4 just for these prettier versions. If there is, then shame on the developers and publishers involved for failing to explain why.
As for console features, onboard streaming is kind of neat, but what else is there that makes next generation feel like more than a visual upgrade? I'm hard pressed to think of one other feature that the upcoming hardware offers that is earth shaking like the online revolution on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 was.
My finger has been hovering over the "cancel" button on both of my pre-orders. The only thing stopping me so far is the fear of regret in November. The closer we get, the easier this decision is getting.
You're going to have to try harder, Sony and Microsoft. Stop competing with each another and start competing with your history. You have a big case to make and not a lot of time to do it.
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Completely understanding where you are coming from. I'm still picking up both consoles on launch day, but the lackluster launch lineup is a bit concerning.
Yea, both consoles look underwhelming so far and none of the launch exclusives look all that good aside from Dead Rising. The consoles themselves seem to be mostly more of the same from this gen. My PC can hold me over for a while so Im probably gonna wait until after E3 next year to get one. At least by then some games will have come out and we'll have a better idea of what each console offers.
The consoles themselves are a massive disappointment, both launch lineups looks dreadful, and there isn't a single next gen game in development that looks interesting to me. :/
I feel like I just watched a schoolyard showdown between PS4 and Xbox One and you're the usually quiet kid who sits on the sidelines but you just stood up and b*tch smacked the *** out of both of them. Well written article sir!
Preordered the PS4 but i will be playing my ps3 and WiiU more this holiday season with GTA 5, batman, mario, zelda
I agree that the launch titles are rather stale, I was disappointed when I found out Dead Rising 3 was only a Xbox launch title as I have had my PS4 preordered since it was made available from GameStop. I have wavered back and forth between which I should truly buy and while I feel the PS4 will have better exclusives in the long run, these launch titles really just aren't very exciting altogether. PS4 will be the first console I will have picked up day one so I am excited to get a system day one.
I don't know, I'm pretty excited about the next gen consoles. I will only be getting the PS4, but I'm still anxious, and eager. This is probably due to the fact, that I was in no rush to get the 360, or the PS3 when they launched, I was content with my PS2 and Gamecube, and really had no interest in new consoles(although I did really want a Wii). This time around, I am looking forward to the PS4. After having only a 360, this generation, I'm excited to return back to Sony.
A few other reasons that my personal pre-order is still in place, asynchronous match making sounds awesome if it delivers on its premise. Titanfall, The Witcher 3, and Destiny are set to release only a few months after launch. Overall, both systems will have vastly improved versions of any cross-gen games. The truth is, it will be a couple more generations before we see anything as awe inspiring as the jump from standard definition to HD that we all witnessed this gen. Now it's about incremental improvement and the refinement and addition of services as much as it is graphics or raw horsepower. I'm very much excited for the prospect of a more PC like experience at half the price, with a dedicated online service.
makes a valid point, but i'm still going to have my ps3 when i purchase my ps4, so no worries :)
It's really hard for me to get excited about new consoles. Only Nintendo manages to intrigue me, because they set out to do something different and I still love their games.
I understand the disappointment in the system hardware/features, but the launch lineup is better than most. You'll have next-gen versions of basically all major franchises, and a few great new ones thrown in as well. Battlefield seems to be the most worthwhile next gen upgrade knowing that the new consoles will run 64 player, 60 FPS online matches...something I can safely assume current gen can't do. Watch Dogs might be another game that severley suffers on the current gen hardware, likewise for AC IV.
I know I'm not excited for the next gen. Not because of lack of money or that I love my ps3 blah blah blah. The real reason honestly is that never in my life have I bought systems on released I do that with video games not consoles. And the whole Xbox 360 having the red ring just shows the reasons why I rather wait then buying the next gen, because if games have issues when they releases which does happen one way or another. Consoles also might suffer issues so good luck to those who get it on release date make sure you don't rip your receipt yet. Another reason is the video games themselves. The ps4 and Xbone are going to be released later this year/next doesn't mean the ps3 games and xbox 360 games are gonna drop cold turkey cause some of us don't have the money to even buy the next gen. So pretty much I get hype when its cheaper, games that I know and love, and when it gain popularity for now both consoles are newbies gonna take some years to be awesome consoles.
Thank you so much for this article. I have been feeling the same way for a long time now, and have seen very little articles about this. Very great. I know its too late to change, but even the later stuff like Metal Gear Solid 5, TitanFall, and Destiny are all cross generation. I' am quite worried about this generation.
Man bring it on Sony and Microsoft I'm ready.