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Captain Obvious vs the of Death of Consoles

(With apologies to Captain Obvious if he feels like this is stepping on his toes. Obviously.)

It occurs to me that as originally conceived console gaming is dead. That it died years ago during the PS2/Xbox1 era, and unlike the gap between the Atari 2600 and NES, it wont be coming back.

Now, many of you choosing to read this will have to bear with me. You came into gaming as this death occurred and as it was a subtle event, its gone on largely unnoticed. It may even be better to call it an evolution than a death since in a fundamental sense its still going on. That it was replaced by something which is still using its name like if the first Homo Sapiens kept calling themselves cavemen even after bashing in the last Neanderthal’s skull. Still, I feel a sense of loss having only recently realized that its gone.

In attempt to better explain myself lets look back at the first time consoles died: the Arati 2600 era. Post a period of standalone systems – and I feel the need to write it as “systems” – based on and around pong and pong based games offering utterly amazing and incredible pong level graphics, the 2600 became the most successful development of this pong evolution if only because a smart five year old could play it.

As in turn it on/off and pull out or plug in a specific game to work the joystick and push the big red button, rather than banging the joystick on the system, the floor, at the family cat or stuffing a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in the game slot. Please note I did say smart five year old.

Unfortunately being something designed for a group of people I can’t name here because our culture has become to retardedly politically correct, game publishers of the age began putting more and more limiting/hurried demands on game makers for which to fuel the drugs hookers and booze orgy phase all young entertainment related industries seem to go through.

After one particularly good party everyone came out of their hangovers realizing they’d made ET, then compounded on that error by forgetting their market as they tried to make a platform which would take pong gaming to a place pong had never been before. The computer nerds making systems which required tape readers, floppy drives and came with keypads on their joysticks. Where surprised when the at the time general non-nerd public stopped providing for their rocker-like lifestyles as their Ford Pintos were repossessed and the hookers went back to the recording and movie industries where they belonged. Here Lies Gaming – R.I.P.

Now take things forward a bit and across the pond – no, the other pond – and you’ll find a – the other – recovering war torn island nation with something to prove. A former playing card company by the soon to be world household name of Leave Luck to Haven has not only made pong unrecognizable – renaming it “spites” – but created a game system that your better grade of five year old could enjoy sans complaints from PETA or a hose down. It is in effect the Atari 2600 reborn only without the fake wood paneling which was literally everywhere in the 70’s.

Dear god, don’t even get me freakin’ started!

Regardless, the point I’m trying to make and which you’ve likely missed is that at its heart the overall mechanics of console gaming were simplistic. It was plug and play in the simplest use of a term which came from PC making which is often anything but. To say console gaming was plug and forget would be more accurate. Being in a time when computer gaming was either unheard of, involved improper use of something weighing tons and filling rooms, or a cabinet often seen in bars or something called bowling alleys and required one – only one – quarter to play when one freakin’ quarter also bought you one comic book or a wealth of honest sugar laced candy.

As you’ve likely noticed, times have changed but they’ve also remained the same. Atari 2600 wasn’t the only thing around as the gaming industry crashed, but because it was the most popular yet simplest thing out at the time the industry fell because it couldn’t recreate that basic simplicity. Not until the NES. When CDs came around there were many contenders but only Sony managed to successfully find a balanced controller scheme while only requiring you to put a disc in a drive tray.

All that ended the day online became available. With that option plug and forget slowly became plug and wait, plug and update needed or plug and SOL. It became plug and you have to think before you can actually play a game. In short, it became PC gaming. Something closer to PC gaming anyway.

Hm, much like an old shaman who’s been screaming most the night about the death of the Sun as a young astrologer points out a giant superheated ball of gas coming over the horizon, I think I’ve lost my audience. Never had it to begin with. Please, go back to playing your Xboxes, Playstations and Nintendo devices for the one if not two console generations you might have them. If there isn't another industry crash and everything ends up as a smartphone app. Justforget about this sadly not short enough rant.

Starting to realize that I should have gone along the lines of Invasion of the Body Snatchers since this about something that has changed and remained the same and yet something, possibly very important, has been lost. So I changed the pic.

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Christopher2547d ago

***Unfortunately being something designed for a group of people I can’t name here because our culture has become to retardedly politically correct***

I see what you did there.

ATiElite2547d ago

how did you manage to get so many bubbles?

let me guess you never said anything viewed negatively about the PS3 or 360. :)

a08andan2547d ago

He is a moderator :) Only they can have 10 bubbles^^ We mortals can only have 8 at the most, no?^^

Christopher2547d ago

Actually, you can have up to 9 bubbles. That's what I had before I became a mod ;)

Otheros002546d ago

He hacked the site and give himself bubbles. /jk

He's actually one of the few people who comes here and is able to stay rational.

AllyOmega2547d ago

I understand what you're getting at, but I don't think that online has killed consoles. If anything, It's added to consoles. Sure, it's not usually "plug and play" anymore, but it can be. Just take out that ethernet cable or just don't sign in to your respective online service. You don't HAVE to update. You don't HAVE to do anythin online with your console if you don't want to.Bang, no more online, your point is essentially kaput.

I think that there have been enough SP games released this generation to be able to say that online hasn't completely taken over. There's RDR, Fallout, Uncharted, GTA, and plenty of other games that aren't reliant on being connected to the internet. If you think that online has killed consoles, just take your console offline. It's entirely possible. But for the rest of us, we'll continue enjoying these newfangled online games.

Godmars2902547d ago

As I said before what I'm trying to say in that console gaming is already dead. That what's going on now is PC gaming done on a low end PC tuned to perform certain tasks at a higher than normal level. This is a fact which can't simply be ignored either. Not when system updates are required to play current games like Portal 2.

But as I also said, this is like trying to convince a Crysis1 defender that the game brought a crisis to the industry because of its high systems demands. Of having them repeatedly point out that *NOW* the game is playable on lower end systems not comprehending that the devs went back and fixed the issue because there had been that many complaints.

Like having an argument with someone about the difference between a chick and a chicken when they wont acknowledge the egg.

AllyOmega2546d ago (Edited 2546d ago )

I'm sorry, I really don't understand your point. Sure, current consoles are technically low-end PC's, but one could say the same thing for the PS2, the Xbox, the PS1, and essentially all consoles, only those did not have the media options that the 360 and PS3 have. Those are additions, and in no way affect the gaming aspect. In fact, you can set it so that the game in the PS3 automatically starts, so that you never have to see the XMB, and I assume that one could do the same on the 360.

Also, the Portal 2 disc comes with the Update on it, so you still don't have to go online. So, if you have to update once every time a game comes out with a mandatory update, that's once every 3 months or so. That's hardly something to claim the death of consoles over.

I do understand your point that consoles aren't as simple as they used to be, but it gets pretty darn close. I don't understand why one wouldn't want their gaming console to do the things that it now does, but one can ignore all of it.This seems to be the natural course that one would expect a console to go in.

I can get where you're going with it, and respect your opinion, but I strongly disagree that consoles are dead. In my opinion, they're stronger than ever.

I see that you're a bit low on bubbles. If you want to continue this conversation, message me.

Captain Tuttle2547d ago

The collapse of the industry in the 80's had nothing to do with hardware and everything to do with software. That might be the point that you're making but it's kind of hard to sift through your writing. Any collapse of the industry this gen will be for the same reason; an unsustainable business model for the developers.

s45gr322546d ago

I understand what you mean, we no longer have the plug and play system i.e. insert disc into disc tray of videogame console and play. Now online or not you need to install say game onto the hard drive despite being a videogame console. You cannot play offline if you don't update your game.. So yeah the true gaming on a console has been replaced by the PC gaming standards and complex games plus lots and lots of fps like PC oh joy.

newgamernation2546d ago

Yeah I see your point but I can't say that I agree with it. Many consoles you can just put the game in and play. The front end software exists because consoles do more than just game anymore. Now you can play music, movies and games so you have to be able to choose between one and the other. As far as them being old PC's well technology moves so fast that the second anything is released it is outdated. To make this fact a basis for an argument doesn't hold up. Games are selling better now than they ever did so to say that consoles are dead is a little melodramatic.

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