This Christmas season, there will be a litany of great games coming out across all platforms.
The new hardware will re-ignite the market and re-capture the imagination of gamers everywhere – that’s beyond a doubt – but those who can’t afford the new consoles or who aren’t yet sold on them will have plenty to do.
Most of the really huge core titles this Christmas (Battlefield 4, Call of Duty: Ghosts, Watch Dogs, Assassin’s Creed IV) are going to look stunning on the new hardware, so there is undoubtedly a large section of the market which will want to upgrade simply to get the most grunt and spectacle out of their games, but the experiences themselves will still be full-featured and just as incredible on current-gen consoles.
Meanwhile, those who aren’t planning to make the upgrade in the launch window aren’t exactly being left high and dry, with Grand Theft Auto V, Gran Turismo 6, Batman: Arkham Origins, Beyond: Two Souls, Dark Souls 2, Diablo III and many more sporting only current-gen platforms, at least at launch.
Of course each of the first parties is hitting with something which will be an exclusive killer app, but it’s a hell of a lineup to compete with.
Forza Motorsport and Ryse: Son of Rome are a great one-two punch for the Xbox One, and DriveClub, Killzone: Shadow Fall and Knack are sure to win over a lot of fans on PS4, but with the extra price on top of the titles themselves of the new hardware, current-gen looks like it’ll more than be able to pull its weight.
Considering also the vast gulf of the install bases of the generations, the big money as well as the landmark entertainment experiences, are still likely to splash the biggest on PS3 and Xbox 360.
The market, however, has been slowly getting stagnant in this unusually long console generation, so people are certainly ready for a change. I have little doubt people will flock to the new consoles in greater numbers than in any generation prior as gaming continues to become more and more central to mainstream entertainment culture.
That said, the renewed excitement in games in general that the new consoles will cause will undoubtedly have a radial trickle effect, renewing engagement in otherwise disinterested gamers with a flurry of new excitement around all games.
Bottom line – it’s a great time to be a gamer.
The indie scene is being courted by both hardware manufacturers, and continues its avalance of progress in the PC and mobile spaces. There will soon be more choice than ever, and huge competition in each and every gaming space and on every gaming platform.
And neither Sony nor Microsoft are backing down from their current-generation offerings any time soon.