The Console Wars 2013

[barely edited]

It’s too early to determine which console will be superior this next generation. There’s only so much take so much away from all the marketing each company has pumped out. I don’t think the XBOX One will be a bad product, but I think the higher price point, and inconsistent messaging will hurt them at launch. Microsoft has changed several policies and plans, but only after tremendous outcry from gamers. That’s good for consumers, but as a company they played it off like they didn’t know any of these issues were going to be such a big deal even though everyone had been speculating it well before the announcement. Basically Microsoft hasn’t managed their core audience’s desires with pushing the console for a broader appeal.

Both systems are actually incredibly similar. The only thing in my mind that separates the two is that Microsoft has the Kinect and more content providers. On the other hand Sony has done a better job promoting indie developers.

It’s all up in the air, and I don’t think anyone can say one will be better than the other at this point in the game. Consumers will decide that.

As for me, I haven’t decided if I’m getting one at launch. It’s going to be a pretty Nintendo heavy year this holiday ({cricket sounds} that’s another story) and I should have plenty to play.

If I do get a system at launch, it will be the PS4. Plus Sony has announced that digitally downloaded games will be available for a cross-discount (from PS3 to PS4) which is all I was ever really concerned about. I don’t want to buy all my pinball tables over again at full price. Cross-buy with the Vita doesn’t hurt either. But that’s just me.

Thoughts on Handheld Gaming

Handheld gaming. Gamers are pretty decisive on the subject. Either you like it or you don’t. One criticism I often hear is “I don’t like playing games on a screen that small”. I’ve never really thought that was the reason though. I’ve always believed that people see handheld gaming as something more childish or simplified than their console brethren. I think a true fan of games plays great games regardless of platform.


When the iPhone game out, I don’t know how many articles I read that were predicting a huge rivalry between Nintendo’s DS and the iPhone. I can assure you that’s not close at all nor will it be anytime soon. A friend of mine wrote a very good article on smartphone games that you should definitely read. Now don’t get me wrong, I love me some Angry Birds. It’s a good time killer but it doesn’t have the depth of some truly wonderful handheld games.  There are some great games that are transitioning over to a smartphone platform that I recommend. Infinity Blade, and Superbrothers Sword & Sorcery are amazing and original.

Graphics are also cited as another reason that people don’t like handheld games. And I think that all goes back to when the Wii came out and people complained that it wasn’t in HD and didn’t have a chance. If it’s a good game, you won’t notice as much, and there are some Wii games that are much more artfully inspired than the other consoles (Donkey Kong Country Returns, Kirby’s Epic Yarn, the Bit Trip Series to name a few.)  The PSP has tremendously better graphics than the DS, but hasn’t sold nearly as well. The PSP also offers a large number of ports or interquels of console games in lieu of original concepts.


If you like games but cite the reasons above for why you don’t play handheld games, give it another shot. With the 3DS out DS prices should drop more and more as time goes on, and there is a wealth of awesome games that you won’t find counterparts on consoles.


Now, I’ll go back to playing Pokemon White. Gotta catch ’em all as they say.