How does this gen stack up against the last?

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Posted by liquiddragon (3447 posts) 5 months, 25 days ago

Poll: How does this gen stack up against the last? (126 votes)

This gen is better hands down. One of the best gens in my memory. 14%
This gen is better. 20%
This gen edges it out. 4%
About the same. 19%
Last gen slightly better. 14%
Last gen was better. 17%
Last gen no doubt. One of the best gens. 5%
Poll 6%

I've really enjoyed this gen much more than the last but what do y'all think?

I'm happy that Japan seems to have a handle on the tech and we've seen a pretty consistent output from that side of the market. I would say everyone has a better handle on the tech and games in general play better and still look awesome. That was the major problem last gen to me. They spent way too much time and resources for the visuals, gameplay really suffered.

I feel like big games have diversified a bit and it's not all about the shooters. Shooters themselves seem more varied also. Indie games also knock it out every year, where last gen it was kinda spotty at times. And finally, we haven't had to endure 2 years of Sony/Microsoft forcing motion on us. God, that was a nightmare.

I think we'll have to look at this gen from a distance to see how it stacks up with all the generations but I can confidently say, for me, this gen is way better than the last.

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#1 Posted by nutter (2187 posts) -

I think the 360/PS3 generation was better, but there’s still a ton of good shit out there.

Witcher 3 and Overwatch are all time greats, in my estimation. God of War 2018 is stellar as well.

Part of my preference for the prior gen comes from it being something of a sweet spot for most of my gaming circle. We played a lot of big, full, private games, a lot of co-op, a lot of games against other squads.

We’re all a little older and a lot busier these days. It’s hard to compete with community.

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#2 Posted by FacelessVixen (2635 posts) -

In terms of tech, this generation is surprisingly awesome; more than just the boost in resolution that I was expecting. The engines are more capable. The consoles themselves have some pretty decent features as well. And going the PC route is totally viable with not needing much money for a decent 1080p or 1440p setup and bad ports of console games are few and far between.

Though graphics aside, I can go either way, especially with the advent of HD remasters and remakes on consoles, and it's a slightly different timetable for which game on PC "belongs" to witch generation. In a way, this generation is kinda just more of the last one, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. The last generation brought me the Mass Effect trilogy, Far Cry 3, Skyrim, Dark Souls 1, Deus Ex: Human Revolution and Dragon's Dogma, and this generation brought me Fallout 4, The Phantom Pain, Bloodborne and Senran Kagura.

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#3 Posted by Pezen (2384 posts) -

I had more games I felt strongly about last gen. Between Alan Wake and Mass Effect (etc.) as far as narrative and plenty of fun co-op games I played with my brother. It feels like I had more engaging experiences. This gen felt in some ways more diverse as far as experiences go, but I cant say it felt like it had as many peaks. The Witcher 3 being probably the only one to reach last gen’s peaks for me.

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#4 Posted by ATastySlurpee (676 posts) -

Some of my favorite games of all-time have come out this generation. As in, if I had to make a Top 10 All-Time, a minimum of 5 from this gen alone would be on my list.

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#5 Posted by nateandrews (92 posts) -

Games became a bit more social for me this generation, but in the last couple of years I’ve become disheartened and frustrated at players being taken advantage of in multiplayer games. It began with loot boxes and it’s now evolved into the battle pass system of progression popularized by Fortnite. A lot of people think it’s a good replacement for loot boxes and season passes, but a drip feed of content I have to grind hours for in a limited time window is not “free” by any stretch. I think players should value their time more because that stuff kinda sucks.

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#6 Edited by cikame (2856 posts) -

Previous gen had Skate 3 in it so....... you know......

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#7 Posted by Casepb (724 posts) -

It feels like this gen console wise (PS4) has had less games. I have a bit over double the amount of PS3 games that I have for PS4. I know 2019 will have a bunch though. For PC it's way better though. Last gen PC barely got any of the multiplatform games, so I guess that's why I have less on PS4 now ha. Honestly I think they are almost the same for me. Maybe last was slightly better, but this gen isn't over yet.

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#8 Posted by Vortextk (944 posts) -

Similar. Great indie stuff. Great PC releases for lots of what would be considered console exclusive games in the past. Less games at certain level, sign of the times. Too many long games. I personally don't need every game I'm interested in to be 40-50 hours minimum just to do some side content and main story; this is still just a personal complaint.

Happy and excited overall.

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#9 Edited by Justin258 (15671 posts) -

I jumped ship to PC at the tail end of last generation so the generation change-over didn't really change anything for me. I have purchased the newer consoles but I don't really play them all that much, which really makes me think I should just stick with PC next time.

As far as this generation goes, Bethesda has really stolen the show for me. Dishonored 2 has some amazing level design, Prey has a wonderfully interesting world, Doom is one of the best shooters ever made and easily the best-playing shooter in a very long time, and all three Wolfenstein games released thus far are a ton of fun and at least two of them have some of the most memorable stories I've ever experienced in gaming. Bethesda Game Studios had the rather bland Fallout 4 and the reception to Fallout 76 has been poor, to say the least, but every other major title they've published this generation has been fucking gold for me and one poorly received, poorly thought-out title isn't going to stop me from paying attention to what the publisher does in the future.

Sony has done some pretty cool stuff but I still can't get into their games, for whatever reason. I played Spider-Man for an hour and thought it felt really bad to play. I never finished God of War - it was pretty but the camera stays very close to Kratos and the story, while well-written, didn't feel like it was really going anywhere. Horizon somehow made that setting feel boring. Uncharted 4 is the best Uncharted game because it focuses way more on characters and conversations and the gunplay sometimes feels like an afterthought, which is fine by me because the conversations are what I like. Ratchet and Clank 2016 was a lot of fun, actually! Overall, I enjoyed Sony's output this generation a lot more than I enjoyed Sony's output on the PS3 but I still can't say anything they've made have been standout games for me.

Nintendo is... Nintendo. I dunno. Super Mario Odyssey was a lot of fun until it wasn't, same for Breath of the Wild. Octopath Traveler was a fantastically flawed gem, in my opinion, and I hope they get to make another (with a more cohesive story this time). I have several other games for the Switch but haven't really played it all that much. The Wii U was a pretty cool machine, though, and I'm sad it was considered a failure. Tokyo Mirage Sessions is a game that deserved way more attention than it got, even though it got way more attention than a game like that normally would.

Considering their recent acquisitions, I am very interested in what Microsoft is planning on doing in the future. I'm not holding my breath, but I am paying attention. Thus far, though, they haven't done anything except release extremely high quality Forza games. And one Gears game. I guess some people like that Sunset Overdrive thing. They did put out Ori and the Blind Forest, though, that was fucking good. And Cuphead.

I can't tell you what 2K has done other than GTA V (which came out on 360/PS3 but come on, that was always made for current-gen consoles) and Red Dead Redemption 2. GTA V was fun while it lasted, if a little too full of itself, and RDR2 looks a lot like RDR1, which is to say it's very pretty and sounds great until I think about how much I don't want to actually fucking play a boring-ass cowboy-thug simulator (that's reductionist. I know. I don't want to play it).

As far as EA and Activision goes... well, I put quite a bit of time into Destiny 2 recently so good for Activision. EA released Titanfall 1 (which was a cool multiplayer shooter) and Titanfall 2 (which was a phenomenally excellent game that far too few people played). Otherwise, both companies have been more out-of-touch than ever. EA's antics have been especially contemptible, what with its focus on exploiting customers to the point where some governments finally stepped in. And they still had the gall to just laugh and keep doing it!

I forgot about Ubisoft. They've got a formula that works and they're sticking to it and that's good for them, but I don't necessarily want any of it. Might and Magic X was cool, though, for as little attention as it got., I need to stop. There's soooo much to talk about on this topic, I didn't even mean to review the generation, I just started typing and stuff kept coming out.

Indie games really shouldn't see the bottom of this list. Because they're the fucking star of the generation. Shovel Knight, Pillars of Eternity, Divinity: Original Sin 2, recently Celeste, AM2R, Axiom Verge, Timespinner, Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon, Factorio, Torchlight 2, and Legend of Grimrock 2 are all games that I've personally played and would highly recommend to anyone. And that's just a drop in the bucket. Hotline Miami, Hyper Light Drifter, Hollow Knight, The Talos Principle, and many more are all well-received games that I either didn't personally enjoy or didn't really get around to. I really hate that I focused on AAA titles first and didn't write about indie games until the end - I'm out of energy for writing. Someone else please take up this torch and talk about indie games.

EDIT: A few hours later and I guess I never answered which gen is better.

I don't really have an answer? I could just as easily have written a ton of stuff about Portal 1 and 2, Mass Effect, Call of Duty, Halo, Forza, Skyrim, Tomb Raider, Uncharted, Gears of War, Saints Row the Third, The Witcher 2, and so on and so forth. I'd rather spend a lot of time talking about all the good things this generation and last generation have to offer, rather than try to declare one preferable over the other.

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#10 Edited by NTM (11846 posts) -

Kind of surprised by the percentages. I picked last-gen was slightly better. Maybe as much, but I'm not sure. I definitely feel like there are more titles that I can say make the list for some of my favorite games of all time compared to this-gen. If not considering all games, definitely first party titles were much better last-gen. This generation did, however, have some good remasters which triumph over their originals from last-gen. I've thought about this recently, and my conclusion has always been that this-gen, despite the number of great games that came out, is, by comparison, pretty disappointing to me. That's not to say I found this-gen to be disappointing though, but it feels kind of weird to almost have new consoles, and not one game this-gen, I think, was better than some of my favorite from last-gen.

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#11 Posted by Rejizzle (1124 posts) -

Which gen is Breath of the Wild?

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#12 Edited by Nodima (2619 posts) -

Granted, I don't have the best perspective considering I almost exclusively played sports games until the back half of the PS3's lifespan when PS+ got amazing (also, I owned a PS3) but this generation is probably the most I've been in love with video games since the PS1/N64 era (I have a ton of nostalgia for the SNES, but that was mostly a Game Genie console for me in its heyday and I came to most of my favorite games later in life). The breadth and depth of types of games is incredible and I really don't feel like there's a true arms race for graphics anymore. Every game looks fantastic no matter what art style they're chasing, and near all of them play at least competently.

Maybe the most basic thing I can say about this generation that pushes it over the top for me is that it's the first time since that PS1/N64, PS2/GCN era when I feel a longing to own the Nintendo console as well. I haven't pulled the trigger and don't know if I ever will, but that Switch looks good from over here in a way no non-Playstation console has in over a decade. Sure, last generation innovated so many things and had so many new ideas, but all of them have been refined and improved on this generation IMO...and I suppose I can also cheat and say quite a few of those innovative experiences are available to play on these new consoles, which is awesome too.

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#13 Edited by Brian_ (14 posts) -

This will probably echo some of everyone else's statements on the matter, but I think in terms of the hardware, the previous gen did more to provide flashy new features with HD graphics becoming the standard, and the rise of online gaming. Whereas this generation has been more of a refinement on those things.

I think I might give the software edge to this gen though. While indie games certainly got off to an important start last gen, the way that scene has grown and the number of great games that are able to come out from smaller teams is really cool to see. Japanese development has gotten back on track in a lot of cases where it seems like games were kind of just floundering, or where people just seemed to be sort of middling on them. Even prominent franchise like Zelda seemed to be struggling to please a lot of it's fan base until Breathe of the Wild came along.

Though, that isn't to say this gen hasn't had it's share of software troubles either. A lot of studios shutting down. The complete disappearance of that middle tier "AA game" space. The failure of the "plastic instrument" games to recapture the magic it had in the previous generation. You even start to see some of the biggest "AAA game" studios kind of start to flounder, what with things being kind of weird at places like EA, or Activation/Blizzard to some degree.

It's kind of hard to say which of these two will end up being more important to video games in the grand scheme of things. Or even which I liked more.

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#14 Posted by TheWildCard (698 posts) -

Personally I think last gen still had more stuff that hit harder for me so I'd still give it the edge, but this gen is starting to close the gap in the last year and change. And if we're throwing portables into the mix, well Vita was pretty great and the 3DS is no slouch, but that DS + PSP combo...

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#15 Edited by TobbRobb (6585 posts) -

Waaaaaaaay better. Several games released on this gen are competing for my all time favorites, and the overall consistency and quantity is higher.

Last gen was one of my least favorites. I consider 2007-2013 kind of a personal gaming dark ages. Though that said, some real gems come from that era as well.

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#16 Posted by ShaggE (9280 posts) -

I honestly can't say until we're well into the next gen and there's some distance from this one to look back on. But tentatively, I'd say that this is an excellent gen overall and better than the previous, despite some qualms with where games as a whole have been heading. Part of that admittedly comes from me not looking fondly back at those years personally (I feel the same about the PS2/Xbox era for the most part), but mostly I just feel like this gen is particularly great overall despite its missteps.

The consoles are aging gracefully, VR still blows my mind, it seems like the good-to-bad game ratio favors the good side of things more than ever, Console-to-PC ports (and vice versa) are rarely bad anymore, the graphical standard is wildly pretty no matter the platform... it's just a damn good time to be a gamer.

If nothing else, developers remembered that there are colors besides brown and shooter settings besides military, haha.

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#17 Posted by DodoBasse (111 posts) -

There's some amazingly good PC games this gen, and a lot of previous and current gen console games have also been ported as better versions to PC, so personally, this feels real good.

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#18 Posted by BradBrains (2272 posts) -

The consoles themselves are MUCH better. Its funny going back to ps3 and realizing how it barely played well with the apps you installed with it, Downloads were weird and it didnt handle multitasking well.

Game wise its hard to say. It seems like last gen was the first where graphics and raw power caught up to what designers could imagine so we got a lot of innovation. This gen feels like better versions of things that happened before. Which is fine but maybe not as exciting.

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#19 Posted by someoneproud (604 posts) -

About the same for me. More truly great games imo but not nearly as many games overall, the ever increasing prevalence of MTX / live services and broken games fixed (hopefully) with patches down the line really sours me on this gen personally.

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#20 Edited by militantfreudian (686 posts) -

I wasn't too keen on the open-world craze early this generation, nor the shoehorned RPG systems that plagued many big-budget games. Also, the trend of big-budget games aiming for increasingly higher production value has engendered mostly risk-averse games in that space (see Sony's first party outings). Nier, pretty much everything Arkane's made, Doom, Bloodborne, and The Witcher have been the standouts for me.

In spite of that, I feel there's still more variety in terms of quality games thanks to indie games, mid-tier publishers like Paradox, and the re-emergence of Japanese games. I think the indie games space is where true innovation and diversity can be found – I suppose not unlike many art forms. Actually, I think indie games, this generation, only served to highlight the failings of bigger games when it comes to innovation and just general holistic game design, or lack thereof.

Even though I might seem down on this generation, I think it may be my favorite...? Though I miss Bioware and Irrational Games.

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#21 Edited by Redhotchilimist (2964 posts) -

Personally, last gen was way more impactful for me. It's more for personal reasons, I guess. I was really disappointed in what I got on the Wii and how annoying motion controls were(despite some standouts, the mario galaxies and punch-out was awesome), so that's the gen I jumped ship from only owning Nintendo consoles and got me a ps2, then a 360 and finally a PS3. So all of a sudden I had access to all these new series and genres that don't thrive in a Nintendo environment. Not all of those experiences were fun, but overall, it was well worth it to try new things.

Comparatively, this gen I've largely played PS4, which feels more like an extension of the 360 with first party games I actually wanna play for a change. I've also played and enjoyed fewer games. There've been some classics for sure, but this time I find my favorites on the Switch, whenever I borrow one. Breath of the Wild, Smash Ultimate and Mario Odyssey all make me happier than pretty much any PS4 game, except perhaps Persona 5. And Persona 5 is a bloody PS3 port, essentially.

Honestly, I feel like this gen has barely started. I've only had mine for like three years, and so many of the games I've played have been remasters and remakes of older games. And before I got one, for those two years or whatever, almost every game that released also came to 360. Like, I didn't need a ps4 to play dragon age inquisition, metal gear solid v or Life is Strange. Seemed like they were made for that 360 gen, too.

That the devs are talking about PS5 now is crazy to me. Feels like the devs themselves were surprised that people still liked to play games, so they've been playing catchup ever since the ps4 launched. And that's not to mention Nintendo, who stumbled over themselves so hard they're technically now a gen ahead of everyone else 'cause they had to pack in the Wii U.

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#22 Edited by PimpSlappp (66 posts) -

Xbox Live was the most influential thing to come out of last gen, imo. I loved the wacky stuff they were doing with themes, gamer pictures, and experiences (Uno, 1 vs. 100, etc.). For me it's tough to beat how it changed my understanding of what multiplayer could be, and it's disappointing that the era of open voice chat and engagement is gone, at least from what I have seen. There was one holiday season when Modern Warfare came out - I think the Orange Box too - and everyone and their mother was signing up for was great.

I love this generation so far, but I just don't get the same warm and fuzzies. I think the quirkiness is gone from these recent consoles, which is a shame; Microsoft came out of the gate swinging with corporate nonsense and Sony seems to be slipping into their PS3-launch era close-mindedness.

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#23 Posted by sparky_buzzsaw (8908 posts) -

The big AAA games feel a little more subdued this generation, exclusives are damn near dead, and the huge sequels that should have been no brainers often times feel like bizarre almost-rans (holy fuck, Bethesda), and yet I think this generation of consoles is my favorite. There are just simply a ton of games to choose from, solid interfaces that rarely feel as annoying as the ever-changing 360 or the frustratingly stiff PS3, the controllers for the PS4 and Xbox One are the best they've ever been, and the machines themselves seem to be holding up better than their past iterations, save maybe the PS2. One of the biggest innovations for me personally this generation was the inclusion of the zoom feature, which makes me feel so much better about gaming when I need to see smaller fonts in games where I can kinda pause the action.

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#24 Posted by styx971 (66 posts) -

the games this gen are great in many cases but i feel like there was just more i actually wanted to play from big name companies last gen over this gen. that said the indies have gotten better this gen imo. i'm both looking forward to and grumbling about the next gen to come since it just seems so soon even tho i know we could use better power in the consoles. ( i have a decent gaming pc so its always a debate over what to get stuff on)

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#25 Posted by Fezrock (732 posts) -

Last generation by far for me. This generation does have some benefits, the games are more technically impressive and the indies are far better and more numerous, but there's almost no AAA games I want to play. Whereas last generation I was down for so many AAA games. I want the sprawling story-driven single player game with huge production values, and if it's relatively linear than all the better. I want a cinematic experience, not goofy open-world jank.

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#26 Edited by Big_Denim (841 posts) -

Had you asked me this 2 or 3 years ago, I would have said it was a major let down compared to last gen. These last few years have had some absolute bangers though. DOOM, Breath of the Wild, Horizon, God of War, Witcher 3, AC: Origins, etc. Top notch stuff is coming out. It's a bummer. Feels like we're moving on to the next generation of stuff already when the current generation is just finally starting to hit its stride.

It mostly depends on the console for me though. Xbox One was a serious let-down and the 360 was without a doubt a much better console.

On the flipside, the PS4 is leaps and bounds better than the PS3.

And I don't think the comparisons between Wii U and Switch even need to be brought up.

Overall though, outside of the dud that is Xbox One, I think this is a great generation for video games and is much better than the previous generation. Between fantastic games, and new approaches on how games are sold and distributed (subscription services, competitive digital download prices, etc.) there's not much to hate on outside of some skeezy industry/business practices.

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#27 Posted by FrodoBaggins (2083 posts) -

Last gen to me feels more robust for some reason, list there was a larger amount of great games. Maybe it's just because I played more games last gen. It definatly had some amazing games, some of which are my all time favourites, Last of Us, Dark Souls, Mario Galaxy, Skyrim..... but I got to give it to this gen as the better. The deciding factor I feel is the amount and sheer quality of the "indie" scene this gen. But it also has some of my favorites, Overwatch, Witcher 3, Rocket League. Yeah, I think this gen edges it.

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#28 Posted by MonkeyKing1969 (7610 posts) -

I think this generation has more interesting games and a stronger Indi/3d party scene. I think last generation had more heavier hitter Triple-A effort/cost games.

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#29 Posted by Sahalarious (788 posts) -

BoTW, Dark Souls 3, Bloodborne, God of War, Red Dead 2, Mario Odyssey, Witcher 3, Hollow Knight, Dead Cells, Tekken 7, Dragon Ball Fighterz, Cuphead, PUBG, Rocket League, RE7, HITMAN, Stardew Valleyyyyy, Into the Breach, Splatoon 2, Night in the Woods, Life is Strange, Nier, Nioh, undertale, obradinn, Gang beasts.

Games are allowed to be art now and writing is starting to get GOOD (see GOW/RDR2). Bioshock and Dark Souls defined last gen for me ,but we've grown tremenously since then. ALso i dont care for ps4 and love my xbox one but seems like im in a twilight zone

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#30 Posted by AlKusanagi (1650 posts) -

At first I was going to say this gen was better, but then I realized that a huge chunk of the current gen is just ported, remade and/or updated versions of games from previous generations.