Note: [All opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of GamerXChange]
There are obviously fans of each of the console makers, but I tend to look at everyone in the same light. We are all gamer’s, and we should never wish for the failure of something gaming related. New hardware is always a time to get excited, or at least that is what its meant in the past. Lately however, I’ve noticed a lot of so-called “gamer’s” actually hope and wish that the Wii U would fail and fail miserably. Do gamer’s not understand that what happens to the Wii U could have a direct impact on what happens with the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox 720? Gaming has a very delicate ecosystem and the repercussions in the industry and in the gaming community would be very widespread.
Sometimes when you write about games and gaming in general it can be hard to get a grasp of what the majority of gamer’s are actually thinking. If you go by what forums and most sites are saying, Call Of Duty would flop each and every year, instead it continues to be the most successful game year in and year out. I think you can classify Wii U haters in a couple of different categories. (A)Gamer’s that are jealous that the Wii U will be the most powerful console on the market for the next year or so, and (B)Gamer’s that are skeptical about the Wii U’s performance when the next Xbox and PlayStation hit the market. Nintendo tends to follow the beat of its own drummer, most of the time this works out really well for them. I think the Wii U is intriguing in a lot of ways, most importantly I’m interested to get my hands on the Wii U Pro Controller so I can see how some of those first party Nintendo games work with a standard controller and in glorious high-definition.
Believe it or not, a lot is ridding on how well the Wii U does. If the Wii U launches with less than stellar sales, it could hasten an already declining gaming market. Nintendo is taking a chance with the Wii U, launching with a tablet like controller instead of a standard controller is a gamble to say the least. On the other hand, tablets are hot right now and this could be Nintendo’s chance to be a bit pro active when it comes to gaming. Microsoft and Sony are sort of doing the same thing, but with much less risk involved, SmartGlass is just an option and so is the Vita connectivity with the PS3/PS4 presumably. Should the Wii U take off, then Microsoft and Sony are both covered and people who are into tablet type gaming mixed with a console will be all set.
The state of gaming is in a state of flux right now, we are towards the tail end of the longest console generation ever, developers are relying on sequels more and more. The smaller developers who are trying new things are all closing down because the cost of making these new games are becoming quite expensive. Still other developers are abandoning consoles in favor of making smaller more cost efficient games on iPhones and iPads. I know gamer’s don’t like to think that quite a few gamer’s are actually abandoning expensive console games in favor of these other devices, but it is happening. I’m not suggesting that console gaming will die out, but I do think there will need to be an adjustment when it comes to console sales expectations next generation. The economy is pretty weak still, but new hardware should bring out the techies and the true gamer’s.
I know a lot of people who are active on gaming sites probably don’t remember the gaming crash of the 1980′s, I don’t really remember it either, but I do remember how parents were very wary of getting their kids anything with “video game” in the title, which is why Nintendo released the Nintendo Entertainment System. In a lot of ways it saved the industry and Nintendo has always been a key cog in the console business since that time, they aren’t afraid to reinvent themselves or their games. I can remember when Mario 64 came out and people were very skeptical at first, Mario was a great platformer and people wanted him to stay that way, then Mario 64 turned out to be one of the best games of all time. The same exact thing happened when Zelda Ocarina Of Time released, now that game is looked at as one of, if not THE best game of all time.
I’m also not saying that we are being faced with a game market crash, but it is definitely on life support, just about everything is down year over year and the huge AAA titles that are being released are all tanking. Max Payne 3 is a perfect example of a great game that just isn’t selling, you can already buy it at a discounted price. It could very well be that people know new hardware is coming and are biding their time and saving their money. I think at the very least the Nintendo Wii U needs to have a solid 8-10 million units sold before the PS4/Xbox 720 release.
Market saturation could be a problem with the current consoles as well, it could be that the Wii U will take off pretty quickly, I’ve noticed a trend where gamer’s don’t like it when consoles offer more than one type of entertainment, obviously Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft are going to want the core, casual and entertainment markets. So getting down on the Wii U for going after a bit of every type of gamer is only going to make you look foolish when the other consoles release featuring other aspects as well. At the end of the day its best to cheer on something your passionate about, if you claim to be a gamer, then be a gamer, help the industry sustain itself and grow. Buy new games to support developers when at all possible, and even if you’re not going to buy a Wii U, at least don’t try to talk other gamer’s out of buying one. We need at least three consoles to choose from, options are good and if one fails, they might very well all fail.