Remember all the hoopla and hype the game companies besieged us with a couple of years ago about next gen games? I have to say I’m disappointed, and all we have gotten so far is better graphics. What happened to shorter load times, new innovations, better and more complicated gameplay? What happened to extra controller functions? All these things seem to have gone by the wayside as we head into the third year of “next-gen” games.
Most of the major franchise games have released their first titles by now, and the outlook is not good. A few have made positive changes, but most are not even as good as their first gen counterparts. Let’s take a look at a few. Across the board, from Tomb Raider to GTA, MGS, and even Ratchet and Clank, most of the earlier games have actually been longer, more involved and sported more features than the Xbox 360 and PS3 titles on the shelf today.
As a fan, I appreciate that costs must be held down, and that it costs a lot more to produce the new titles, while the price has not risen much since the Nintendo days of gaming in the 90’s. That doesn’t help much, though. I feel like a bachelor who spent a lot of money on a dinner date and got ditched at 9 PM. She didn’t promise anything, but it was implied. Remember the first Sony controllers they showed us for the PS3? It looked like a boomerang. The one they actually produced looked exactly like the PS2 version. Yes, many, many things were implied, and we have yet to see any of them come to pass.
This is not to say that the new generation of games is bad. But it seems that even the best of them is no better in gameplay than it’s predecessors on earlier game systems. All I am asking for is a little honesty from the gaming companies I have supported for years as a consumer. If they are not going to build better games, and it’s going to be all about better graphics, then just say so. Don’t make me spend 400 dollars taking you out to dinner if you are going to ditch me at 9.
Nintendo is the only one of the three console producers who has tried any innovation, and this has had mixed results. The Wii is simply not up to the graphics capability of the Xbox 360 or PS3. The control system has attracted many casual gamers to the market, and left many old fans angry and dissatisfied. Lots of gamers prefer the old controls, especially on shooters. Many wanted Nintendo to go ahead with more sheer brainpower for their console, amping it up to the the capability of its competitors. The Wii is great at parties, but if you want to sit down a few hours and play your favorite games, the repetitive arm motion may get tiresome.
This article is written as a fan, not a techie. I know there are many reasons why the systems have fallen short of expectations, but excuses sound lame when I have paid over a thousand dollars for the three new systems, and am not seeing improvement in most games. It’s time for the game producers to start delivering better games instead of merely better graphics. I’m looking at you, Resident Evil and Burnout.
Enough is enough. If you really care about better games, make your voice heard, and E-mail your favorite game company, because things are not going to get better until the fans demand it.