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How Sony and Microsoft Prove The Market Is Shallow

So, Playstation 4 Pro has been revealed... yay. Stupid name by the way.

Playstation 4 Pro and Xbox One Scorpio (I guess the name is still being worked out) have a number of people frothing at the mouth. They can't wait to part with their gold and purchase the very symbols of what is wrong with gaming today.

Now, I understand that new products will always generate some level of buzz, hype, anticipation, etc.but actually read comments about these unnecessary devices. People discussing teraflops as though they actually know what they are and what they do. Numbers being thrown around like we're in a mathletics competition. Acronyms and abbreviations and brand names and buzzwords are all flying about as visual fidelity is, once again, at the forefront of discussion.

Fanboy arguments about power, and how Scorpio is better than Pro but Pro isn't trying to compete with Scorpio, and neither are next gen but fanboys from one group are calling one next gen in order to separate and protect the other while the other group of fanboys calls them out on it. Congratulations.

Feel proud of the fact that all of this hype, and the speed at which you throw money at these devices, proves that all the market can do is judge a book (or in this case a game) by its cover (or in this case by its visuals).

Notice that no one is talking about better games? Nope. Everyone is implying epic experiences because 4K and framerate. Right. Because we all know that graphics determine a great game.

Interestingly, I wonder if No Man's Sky becomes a better and more complete game in PS4 Pro mode. Hmmm. Is The Last of Us' story better told in 4K? Do you like Nathan Drake as a character more because Uncharted 4 is rendered at 60 FPS instead of 30?

We have games that are broken, unfinished, and lacking content. We see proof that people don't even finish games anymore. We see example after example of consumer gouging and money making schemes to prop up bloated development and marketing budgets. We see games that sell millions being considered market failures. And yet, these things will not change. They will not get any better, nor will they even be addressed.

Why? Because of you, dear graphics whore. Yes, you who read this, read the term graphics whore, and took immediate offense and/or began a defense argument. You who complain about graphical downgrades immediately and buy the most shallow games because they look amazing and then complain that the game was only 6 hours long or somehow boring. You, whose first words when hearing that Watch Dogs 2 exists were "in before downgrades." You, who criticized Fallout 4 for supposedly being graphically ugly. You, who count how many pixels are in what resolution, or how many frames are shown per second. You are the problem.

You have shown Microsoft and Sony that all you care about is how good a game looks, which makes them (as well as third party developers) spend obscene amounts of time and money on hardware and software designed to push fidelity over everything else. This creates a necessary evil of cutting corners, massive day one patches, ridiculous DLC/pre-order/microtransaction schemes to recoup development costs, and the actual substance of games either being ridiculously streamlined, cut up and resold, or flat and short and shallow.

And then we get to see how none of that goes away, or gets better. We also get to see anti-consumerism flourish and grow. Why? Why not? Why should the industry even care when you consistently show that the first and most important thing you care about is resolution and framerate and photorealism?

For the past few weeks I haven't even turned on my PS4. There's nothing I want to play. Nothing. Indies are more shallow than the Triple A games, but that at least is excusable. And the Triple A games that are worth playing don't start really releasing until next year. At least for me anyway.

So, instead, I've been playing PS2 games. Star Ocean 3, Suikoden V, Final Fantasy XII, Shadow Hearts 2, and soon SSX Tricky. All of those games are fun in different ways. Some have better stories than anything you'll find today, with few exceptions. Some have more entertaining gameplay. Some have incredible characters.

If a Triple A studio focused on any of those previous qualities, and released a game today that had "PS2 graphics" as a result, said developer would be blasted online. Absolutely hammered for daring to not make a game where you can see the protagonist's pores rendered in 4K. And that mentality is reinforced by the rabid frothing at the mouth for mid-gen, overpriced, chipset swaps that will not provide better games, just marginally better looking games.

Where is this passion for substance? Why is all of this energy that goes into blasting allegedly graphically unimpressive games, and hyping iterative consoles, not pointed at a development studio like Bethesda and demanding that they stop dumbing down their games. Or all of the studios that announce their games way too early and end up having to delay them?

Oh sure, you might get some action when it's someone like Activision, EA, or Ubisoft but that's only because of their more prominent presence in news, but just like any internet outrage, it's a flash in a pan.

So once again, I say congratulations. You're getting your marginal upgrades and paying hundreds of dollars for something that will be obsolete in 2 or so years. Your games will look slightly better, but they won't actually BE any better, and I hope you have no expectations that they will be. Sony and Microsoft know what you want. Grfx, Grfx, and more Grfx. I'm sure one of these days someone will sell a piece of software on consoles that's nothing more than settings bars for $80 and it will have the highest user rating ever seen on metacritic, with a $50 Season Pass that includes bar extensions, and microtransactions that will give your bars bars so you can set graphical settings while you set graphical settings. Enjoy.

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Gaming_Cousin1739d ago

The names may be stupid (I personally don't think they are) but your English really needs some work.

DragonKnight1739d ago

Not really. I'm not writing a dissertation and not looking to impress an English teacher. Did you understand what I had to say? Yes? Then that's all that matters.

TwoForce1739d ago (Edited 1739d ago )

Then PC master race rule them all. Yeah, I think you want PC to rule everything.

DragonKnight1739d ago

I don't own a gaming PC. And your logic needs to be questioned. If my blog is lamenting the focus on graphics, why would I want PC to rule considering there is no place where graphics elitism is more prevalent?

TwoForce1739d ago (Edited 1739d ago )

I don't consider my opinion is perfect. I know it questionable from me. Graphics doesnt make a better game. That's true. Even so, people will do their own benefit even go blindly or aware. I can tell you this. Graphics don't equal gameplay, but there are some people can do that both. Maybe I can't remember who name is, but I remembered the person did a great job in both graphics and gameplay.

s45gr321735d ago

No is time for console gamers to fight back, unite and stop the corporations from treating them like husks. All console gamers do is sit there and do nothing. Instead, console gamers will go to great lengths to protect the corporations or game developers. Look, how console gamers are defending Star Wars Battlefront, the half ass PS4 Pro, Evolve, Battlefield, etc. Is crazy to see console gamers damaging control anti-consumerism and feel sorry for their billion dollar corporation.

uth111739d ago

Well said!

I personally don't understand how gamers are constantly complaing about how much games cost, or should cost, how many hours is enough to justify the cost, about the cost of DLC and microtransactions, and the cost of online services, etc as if they are being bled dry but then can't wait to spend money on these marginal-upgrade consoles! And not just the consoles, many are busy shopping for HDR 4K TVs to go with it.

Hello? $400 for a PS Pro only 3 years into the generation, with marginally improved specs is a much bigger cash grab than $10/year extra for PS+!

Not only that, improved graphics are such a diminishing return these days. I can't tell you how many PC/XB1/PS4 game comparison videos I've watched where I haven't seen a significant difference between them. Sure there are some minor differences there. I'm sure if I pulled out a magnifying glass, I'd see more. But it's not obvious if you aren't looking for it! It's not like the old days where the difference in graphics between platforms was night and day, and doubling your graphics capability really meant something. Everybody loses their mind over minor crap!

I think it's driven by the console wars or console vs PC war. Arguing about which platform has the best games is subjective and therefore leads to battles with no clear winner. But resolution is easily measurable, and therefore easy to "win" the best resolution battle. Even though better resolution doesn't necessarily mean better graphics. Resolution is just one component of what makes graphics look good. Another important one is fine detail, which often means needing more polygons. Also AA and post-processing. But guess what? If we are forced to push more pixels to the screen, it consumes processing time that could have been used to push more polygons or better AA or whatever, so it's not really improving the graphics as much as you think!

TwoForce1739d ago

In the end, I care about playing video game.

Aloy-Boyfriend1739d ago

How is this any different from PC. gamers going crazy with benchmarks and new GPU every year? Does that mean they only care for graphics? Of course graphics is all people can perceive until they get their hands on it.

It's the world of technology. People always want the lastest tech and droll at something new. It is how Smartphone companies sell you a phone every year even tho they are the same. That does not mean you in particular have to upgrade. It's your choice, and you shouldn't be angry at people for choosing what to do with their money.

At least they are enjoying themselves with what they spend their money on rather than being on N4G raging on every blog post about people doing/liking stuff that you don't

DragonKnight1739d ago (Edited 1739d ago )

Your entire comment is excusing and justifying what should not be excused nor justified. So because it's normal for PC, and because what's new is seen as exciting, the entire industry should capitulate to putting graphics first and foremost above everything?

These arguments people make are so shallow.

"Smartphones do it" is not an argument, it's an excuse. To use an analog, if your friends jumped off a bridge, does that mean you have to as well?

"People can spend their money on whatever they want to" Yes, but the more people misspend their money, the more the industry is misdirected. The thing is is that people are not enjoying what they are spending their money on, we know this from how many times we see complaints about graphical downgrades, patches, etc... People don't think about what they are spending their money on, they just spend it because something new came out. But the reason these consoles exist, according to people who think they know better, is because the current consoles are underpowered. So clearly these people were not happy buying underpowered consoles and complained. Where's the "enjoyment?"

And if the only thing you can say is "at least they are enjoying what they are spending their money on" then you don't have an argument to make and are wasting your time, my time, and the time of everyone who read your post.

formanbradley1736d ago (Edited 1736d ago )

"People don't think about what they are spending their money on, they just spend it because something new came out."
This. All my coworkers are hype machines that get bored of a game within a month of release.

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