This is my very first (EVER) blog post, not much of a writer so forgive me for the grammar & convoluted appearance of this.
I have been gaming for over 20+ years, started with the Atari 2600. Dabbled on the PC, moved on to Nintendo in the mid/late 80s finally becoming a full fledge Playstation fan for the last 17 years. In that time I have noticed an interesting trend. When a console company becomes so popular for many years that success can be a detriment. Often leading to either drastic changes or in some cases ceasing to exist. Every console company has experienced this at one time, so this is a lesson to Microsoft & their fan base...it can happen to you too.
First of all I will start with Atari. In the early 70s to late 70s no other console was as successful as the Atari 2600, that thing sold millions. Unfortunately because of internal power struggles, increase competition from home PCs, & the crash of 83 (look it up) the losses were too much. Eventually over time the console division of Atari ceased operating.
During Atari's troubles Nintendo single handedly saved the US gaming sector with the release of the NES. Nintendo was very popular in their home country but when it reached American shores in the mid 80s the gaming console was alive again. Soon after another company by the name of Sega saw the resurgent market in the US & they too joined in with the Master System. Sega's system was the superior platform but Nintendo was aggresive in its marketing & Sega marketed the Master System with ineffective results. (sound familiar).
Skip ahead to the early 90s, Sega was not to be denied though they released the Genesis around the same time Nintendo put out the SNES. Sure Nintendo had their Mario but Sega introduced Sonic to the masses pitching him as 'cooler' than Mario. The masses bought that & Sega captured the majority of the market share (over 65%) from Nintendo. This however was the last time they achieved that. Sega started releasing over priced add-ons for some reason to moderate but overall poor sales.
Having lost market share to Sega & Sega about to release the CD adapter, Nintendo turned to Sony to counter. We all know the story by now so I will skip over that. All I have to say about that is for the better part of the 80s Nintendo dominated but they were challenged by a rival company & thus resorted to drastic measures. This was the start of Nintendos fall from the top.
Sega fall from their short stint at the top was fast & hard. Sony entered the console sector after 'you know what' & with stellar marketing they began their quick rise to the top while Sega & Nintendo struggled to keep up. The original Playstation easily crushed the the Nintendos N64 & Sega's Saturn. Sega tried once again with the Dreamcast but it was the last console they will ever make.
Sony was at an all time high with the success of the PS1, they continued that momentum with the PS2. Nintendo again resorted to drastic innovation with the Gamecube & Microsoft decided to throw their hat into the ring with the original Xbox. Again Sony easily obliterated the competition taking over 80% of the market share. This in my opinion is where Sony began their series of 'f**k ups'...I will get to this in a sec.
After basically being embarrassed for two generations Nintendo decided that since the 'core' gamer was lost they focused on the more family (everybody) crowd with the Wii. It turned out to be a successful decision though it was not considered to be a next gen machine. In my opinion the Wii was released as a gamble but a gamble that would make up for the failures of the N64 & Gamecube.
With a taste of the console market fresh in their heads & the desire to be a step ahead of Sony's new machine, Microsoft to an extent rushed the release of the XB360. It was no doubt a business decision & you know what it worked. One thing Microsoft does well is they know their fan base very well. Even with all the problems the 360 had they knew their fans will continue to support it. It is the same with Windows...every iteration has problems but cause of aggressive marketing it continues to do very well. We are near the end of this generation of consoles & the the 360 continues to sell, even without a lot of 1st party games the system still leads the market share. They have relied on 3rd party support & since they are the market leader they have the 'right' to dictate how games are made for their system. It is the same way as when the PS2 was leading, Sony had the say in game development.
Anyways back to Sony & their fall. Some due to competition but mainly due to Sony's over confidence after the success of the PS2 which led to poor decisions in creating the PS3, poor marketing (they use to be so good at it with the PS1 & PS2), & over confident management (i am looking at you Ken Kutaragi). In my opinion Sony had the opportunity to lead this gen with the PS3, they had everything in their favor with the success the last 2 gens, but simply putting it "THEY F****D UP!" There is no denying they made some dumb moves this gen that cost them big time. The ball was in their hands & they simply gave it away. Now they have spent the majority of this gen trying to dig their way out of the hole they put themselves in but in the end it may be too late.
So the point I am trying to get across is pretty cliche if you think about it. It happens in sports, schools, business...when you are the top dog for a very long time EVERYBODY is gunning for your position. What you do to stay at the top can either keep you there or make you come crashing down fast.
I am a Sony fan boy to an extent so it pains me to say but 'Congratulations to Microsoft & their fan base' you made it to the top this gen but remember next gen you guys can easily be where Atari, Sega, Nintendo, & Sony is at one time.
Hitting Rock Bottom.
*Sorry for the long post but I felt it was necessary to get this point across. Being a Sony fan is hard this gen I have to admit but I hope this will at least keep people thinking about what they say...Like the old saying goes "What goes around, comes around."