In the wake of the Xbox One’s unveiling, and now the current rumor that the PS4 might also have used game DRM of some sort, I have been thinking about what my options are in regards to eighth generation systems. Now this is of course keeping in mind that Sony hasn’t officially made their stance on this subject known. So with that known I have been looking closely at what we know currently about the different platforms, and I’ll just get the Xbox One out of the way. I don’t like what we know about the Xbox One at all. I don’t like a system that already alienates a substantial potential consumer base by having required internet. And there’s no getting around that, Microsoft has made it pretty clear over the last week that the system isn’t always online, but that it requires an internet connection.
So now I am down to the PS4 and Wii U as potential system purchases. Well if Sony’s used game DRM rumor is true and the PS4 has one, that’s out as an option as well. I can’t possibly afford to buy every game at their brand new launch day price and often times end up grabbing them months, if not years, later as used games. This is especially the case with niche games that have limited physical runs, making used the only viable option outside of the ungodly high prices these games usually carry for a new copy on eBay or Amazon or some other site. And that’s not even touching the fact that I also like to rent a lot of games to try them out, because quite frankly I don’t think the demos we get are enough to build a solid opinion on a game, at least on whether or not said game is worth $60.
So that leaves the Wii U. I’m sure Nintendo’s own personal offerings will more than likely be stellar for the most part, and the exclusive third party games the system will get will at least be interesting, hopefully. That being said, until the system’s sales start to climb, third party publishers, particularly those in the West, will remain wary of the platform. And this isn’t even touching on how Nintendo still ties your digital purchases to specific systems, so if I do get a Wii U, the only games I’d buy would be physical games.
At this point, I’m not exactly feeling happy about any of the three systems. In fact I wouldn’t be amiss to say I would be contemplating skipping the eighth generation altogether, but then I remembered that I already had an eighth generation system, two of them in fact. The 3DS and PS Vita are technically eighth generation systems. They may not be home consoles that you plug into a TV and play with a controller, but still.
And it isn’t exactly impossible to imagine a gamer getting enough satisfaction out of handheld to where they don’t really need a console. Just look at Japan for proof of this. Over the last near decade, the Japanese gaming industry shifted into one more heavily focused on handheld systems like the DS, PSP, 3DS, and Vita.
Persona 4 Golden, Fire Emblem: Awakening, Soul Sacrifice, and Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward are amongst my most favorite games I’ve played this year and all four were handheld games. So there are really satisfying experiences to be had on handhelds.
I will admit, though, that the current handhelds do fit my particular gaming needs more than most other gamers. I really like RPGs and fighting games and the 3DS and Vita have those two genres in spades. I also can play my handhelds anywhere I want to, which is a great thing for me as I can’t sit up for prolonged periods of time after badly pulling my back last year, so I can’t exactly sit in front of a TV for long, and end up doing most of my gaming in my bed now.
So maybe you’re like me, maybe you’re not. All I know is I’m not exactly in need to grab up an eighth generation console anytime soon. I have all the eighth generation gaming I need in the palm of my hand.