From the Mouths of Babes

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From the Mouths of Babes

Post by Auto-Fox » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:40 am

A few days ago, I had an interesting conversation in front of the games display at the the local Walmart.
Yes, I go to Walmart, occasionally. Don't judge me. It's a bloated parody of consumer culture and a carnival of Humanity's lowlifes at the same time, but sometimes, you gotta get something absolutely dirt cheap.
In any case, I was in front of the Wii display, having taken over the game of a kid who'd gotten bored with New Super Mario Bros. and gone over to play some faceless FPS at the PS3 display.
His friend, or brother, I never asked, had come over to watch me play. We talked a little bit, mostly about the Wii's controls and such.
But then he said one thing which struck me.
"I'll bet the PS3 version is better."
Now, far be it from me to judge the PS3. I've never actually played anything on one, and as a whole, I tend to condemn all the 7th generation consoles with equal prejudice anyway, for various reasons.
However, New Super Mario Bros. is only available on Wii, being a Mario game after all, a Nintendo property.
This kid, obviously a gamer of some capacity (though young), was not aware that Mario was, by his very nature, restricted to one company's console.
I kindly set him straight, and he understood. He did, however, concede that he still thought it was a stupid idea to have a game only on one machine, and, having no good argument to the contrary, I had to agree.
But this encounter got me to thinking.
In recent years especially, the historic tradition of platform-exclusive software has become less and less prevalent throughout the industry. Any new game released will typically have at least both a PS3 and Xbox 360 release (the Wii's odd control scheme making it still difficult to port some titles). Differences may exist in the quality of two ports of the same game, but the fact remains, they're the same game.
Console-specific exclusives of course haven't disappeared. But, anything that's not download-only is generally available for more than one platform.
And now, I run into a representative of the next generation of gamers who, by his own admission, says that multi-platform games are not only the norm to him, but even preferable.
It begs the question, are we in fact moving toward an end to the console wars? When games for one system are available on another, what will be the point of competition?
I predict that, soon, it will be irrelevant to favor one console over another based on its library, as they will be the same. Soon after that, it may be impractical to own multiple consoles. Perhaps we are moving toward a world where, indeed, as Trip Hawkins once predicted, one machine is all you need for your gaming and entertainment.
What are your thoughts on this subject?
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Post by 3DOKid » Mon Feb 14, 2011 10:00 am

I don't see it.

And the reason I don't see it, is that companies will still see a value in controlling the set-top box. Especially today. Downloaded media, games, social-networking, streaming TV, there are a whole bunch of big reasons why the likes of Sony and Mircosoft will continue making there own proprietary systems and competing for services and alliances.

Controlling that device also means you control standards to a degree: HD-DVD, Blu-Ray, Mp4, Mp3, etc., etc. These make a fortune for the winner.

Also, competition is good.

Look at the rise and fall and rise of Nintendo, and the rise and fall of Sony. Like two pea's in a pod they both promised a revolution, and to be fair delivered on it, then once they had dominance, they became arrogant unfriendly bullies. Sony spends it's time apologising these days, and Nintendo's ninja lawyers are back out in force. 5 or 6 years ago, the shoe was on the other foot. Both companies have had their time making retailers, developers and consumers lives a misery, then, later, being forced to recant on that position. Without competition it would be just hopeless suffering and misery for all involved.

Unless they are forced, like Sony are doing right now I guess, and Nintendo did around the N64/GC time, to rethink their position, strategy and marketing, either one would be rampaging animal with little care for the consumer at all.

Also, what would encourage a single gaming platform to improve and innovate with competition?

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Post by 3DO Experience » Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:38 pm

I agree with Kid. And the next generation will only have two contenders, unless someone buys the PlayStation brand.
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Post by 3DOKid » Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:32 pm

Apple buy Playstation? Not really Sonys MO though is it?

For the next generation I kind of hope Sony get's it's act together. Regardless of what people think of the PS1 and PS2, both consoles had an enormously broad spectrum of games, and Sony took chances. They are meant to be the biggest dev-house in the world, but you would never guess.

It now takes dev houses 2 years to churn out another identi-kit average FPS, i just wish they would stop listening to think-tanks and consumer working groups (consumers are idiots) and let their imagination go a bit.

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Post by 3DO Experience » Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:42 pm

Sony won't be in the next gen. They are already trying to sell the PlayStation name.
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Post by 3DOKid » Tue Feb 15, 2011 11:15 pm

Mark my words on this. Never in a zillion years ever will Sony sell Playstation brand.

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Post by Vance » Tue Feb 15, 2011 11:43 pm

Faceless shooter? PS3? You people are ADORABLY passive-aggressive!

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Post by Mobius » Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:11 am

Have you forgotten the early-mid 90s when there were like a dozen game systems and every third party game got a release on every one of them, no matter how horribly they had to be mangled to do so?

Console exclusives aren't going anywhere. It does seem we've hit a "sweet spot" of sorts with three major home consoles at a time, though.

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Post by Trev » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:38 pm

Mobius wrote:Have you forgotten the early-mid 90s when there were like a dozen game systems and every third party game got a release on every one of them, no matter how horribly they had to be mangled to do so?

Console exclusives aren't going anywhere. It does seem we've hit a "sweet spot" of sorts with three major home consoles at a time, though.
How I miss the mid 90's. It was a console collector's dream period.
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Post by 3DO Experience » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:08 am

3DOKid wrote:Mark my words on this. Never in a zillion years ever will Sony sell Playstation brand.
I probably shouldn't be repeating this but they already tried.
"Wait. You don't have a bag of charcoal in your gaming room???"

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Post by Austin » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:32 am

3DO Experience wrote:
3DOKid wrote:Mark my words on this. Never in a zillion years ever will Sony sell Playstation brand.
I probably shouldn't be repeating this but they already tried.
Really? I'm curious now. Go on! :o

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Post by 3DO Experience » Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:07 am

You are getting me on a talkative day.. An old friend of mine told me about a certain American game company who heard a rumor SONY was thinking of selling off the PS name. You have to understand that computer game companies are full of gossip. So they approached SONY and believe it or not they got a meeting. His company made an offer on just the PS name logos and such, SONY turned them down but gave them a figure of what they were thinking. He told me there was one more decimal point than what they had offered.

I know what you are thinking "but SONY turned them down", yes they did but they also met and gave them a starting price. SONY is ready to sell...
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Post by Austin » Thu Feb 17, 2011 5:16 am

That sounds crazy to me.. but, maybe they are thinking of doing it as a way to build funds for whatever next platform they are working on (behind closed doors, of course.. they have to be working on something).

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Re: From the Mouths of Babes

Post by NikeX » Thu Feb 17, 2011 11:24 pm

Auto-Fox wrote:...
What are your thoughts on this subject?
Image

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Post by Mobius » Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:08 am

Heeeeyyyyy... We have that same printer in the copy room at work. Of course, I work for HP, soo... :)

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Post by BryWI » Fri Feb 18, 2011 1:37 am

skynet! oh sh*t!

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Post by 3DO Experience » Fri Feb 18, 2011 2:12 am

Austin wrote:That sounds crazy to me.. but, maybe they are thinking of doing it as a way to build funds for whatever next platform they are working on (behind closed doors, of course.. they have to be working on something).
I told him it was crazy that they would sell now that they are finally making money off it. He said that the PS3 was more or less to help them win the HD war. Blu-ray won so they are happy.
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