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#1 Posted by regularassmilk (1708 posts) -

Before the launch of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, their was lots of nail-biting regarding how they would perform in a world where gaming is taking place more and more on cell phones. Sure their were still tentpole franchises like Call of Duty, but it seemed more and more like the generation coming into the world was playing games on mobile devices exclusively.

Yet, it's been reported that the new black boxes have blown away their predecessors in sales, if you were to compare the figures post-launch. It's been talked about and joked about, but why is this happening?

Did people skip a generation, and if so, why? Is it children who grew up with Wii's and got deep into games that way? Why, and to who, are the new consoles selling to?

Frankly I'm excited that the consoles are selling! Console gaming has such a huge part of my life, and I plan for video games to be a sizable component in my sons life too. I can't wait to play Tekken with him some day. He's already almost one!

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#2 Posted by Yesiamaduck (2508 posts) -

We're getting to the stage where everyone grew up with video games as 'the norm' and as a result it breeds more hardcore gamers meaning the will always be a demand for big experiences . A fact the press completely neglected whilst forecasting doom.

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#3 Posted by bargainben (500 posts) -

We're getting to the stage where everyone grew up with video games as 'the norm' and as a result it breeds more hardcore gamers meaning the will always be a demand for big experiences . A fact the press completely neglected whilst forecasting doom.

it didnt turn out true in Japan, and being on the tech edge as they are people often look to that society for paradigms that could happen in the west years down the line. Japan not caring about consoles anymore is probably something to take note of in the future. Its easy to say "I told you so" in hindsight but Im sure many of the same people saying that now thought the iPad and Wii would fail. People only acknowledge the fights they win. PS5 and the next xbox, in 10 years or so, probably will be in some dire straights. Nintendo will probably be entirely mobile by then. The forecast wasn't wrong, it was just early.

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#4 Posted by BaD_KarAte (115 posts) -

I think gadget lust and the promise of future AAA titles are the reason consoles sell. Its certainly not the current software available.

In Japan, I don't know a ton about the audience of Japanese titles but it seems to me the hardware demand is not nearly as intensive. There are always exceptions I know, I'm just stating in general the games produced for the Japanese audience seem heavier on story rather than set pieces.

I think another reason console zeitgeist is more subdued may be due to the current emphasis on PC gaming. Its open source nature and multiple online store environments have made a good space for indies and blockbusters alike to operate. I think consoles need to become more like PC's in that regard if they wish to make it passed the next generation or two.

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#5 Posted by mosespippy (4751 posts) -

@yesiamaduck said:

We're getting to the stage where everyone grew up with video games as 'the norm' and as a result it breeds more hardcore gamers meaning the will always be a demand for big experiences . A fact the press completely neglected whilst forecasting doom.

it didnt turn out true in Japan, and being on the tech edge as they are people often look to that society for paradigms that could happen in the west years down the line. Japan not caring about consoles anymore is probably something to take note of in the future. Its easy to say "I told you so" in hindsight but Im sure many of the same people saying that now thought the iPad and Wii would fail. People only acknowledge the fights they win. PS5 and the next xbox, in 10 years or so, probably will be in some dire straights. Nintendo will probably be entirely mobile by then. The forecast wasn't wrong, it was just early.

Japan's console market is in trouble because Japanese companies stopped making games for the Japanese market. The western market is what they have focused their energy towards. Also, the cost of making big games has risen to the point that a game that only sells in Japan will be unprofitable, so games have to have western or global appeal.

Personally I don't like where the consoles are headed. There seems to be fewer and fewer new ideas being attempted because of the rising costs of making console games. It takes over 600 people multiple years to make an Assassin's Creed or GTA game now. That kind of investment means it's going to stick to the formulas of past installments. But also, with that many people working on a game it has to be difficult to make a meaningful change.

I feel like in the PS2 era studios had between 20 and 50 employees working on a game. We got a lot of interesting games, but we also got a lot of financial failures.

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#6 Edited by Justin258 (15545 posts) -

Video games got a hell of a lot more popular over the course of last generation, so a hell of a lot more people were interested in buying new consoles when they came out.

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#7 Edited by Corevi (6796 posts) -
@mosespippy said:

I feel like in the PS2 era studios had between 20 and 50 employees working on a game. We got a lot of interesting games, but we also got a lot of financial failures.

This is definitely the worst part of the last generation. We saw the death of the B-Tier game, and now very few full games are risks in any way. Indie games come close to capturing that sometimes but usually they are just as trend following as the AAAs.

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#8 Posted by SethPhotopoulos (5777 posts) -

Think of all the new people that bought the old consoles over the course of the generation. The console market grew here.

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#9 Posted by Yesiamaduck (2508 posts) -

You need to remember the are all sorts of factors at play in Japan ranging from an ageing population that's over populated which leads to increasingly small living spaces

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#10 Posted by coaxmetal (1834 posts) -

South, for the winter

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#11 Posted by edsone (305 posts) -

@bargainben said:

@yesiamaduck said:

We're getting to the stage where everyone grew up with video games as 'the norm' and as a result it breeds more hardcore gamers meaning the will always be a demand for big experiences . A fact the press completely neglected whilst forecasting doom.

it didnt turn out true in Japan, and being on the tech edge as they are people often look to that society for paradigms that could happen in the west years down the line. Japan not caring about consoles anymore is probably something to take note of in the future. Its easy to say "I told you so" in hindsight but Im sure many of the same people saying that now thought the iPad and Wii would fail. People only acknowledge the fights they win. PS5 and the next xbox, in 10 years or so, probably will be in some dire straights. Nintendo will probably be entirely mobile by then. The forecast wasn't wrong, it was just early.

Japan's console market is in trouble because Japanese companies stopped making games for the Japanese market. The western market is what they have focused their energy towards. Also, the cost of making big games has risen to the point that a game that only sells in Japan will be unprofitable, so games have to have western or global appeal.

Personally I don't like where the consoles are headed. There seems to be fewer and fewer new ideas being attempted because of the rising costs of making console games. It takes over 600 people multiple years to make an Assassin's Creed or GTA game now. That kind of investment means it's going to stick to the formulas of past installments. But also, with that many people working on a game it has to be difficult to make a meaningful change.

I feel like in the PS2 era studios had between 20 and 50 employees working on a game. We got a lot of interesting games, but we also got a lot of financial failures.

Console market in Japan is the way it it's due to most people going handheld. Even more so than in the past. The idea that they stopped focusing on their own market is going too far in my opinion. Sure there're some games focused on the international market but most are very Japanese games. Many great titles have been Japan only lately. Ni no Kuni took forever to be localised, same for Xenoblade and Last Story. Fatal Frame people have no idea what's going to happen. Dragon Quest X never did, Yakuza has been largely ignored. That's not to mentioned the types of games that are usually never localised such as visual novels. if anything they are simply not been localised.

So with people going handheld, stagnated economy and rising costs of the consoles many companies are focusing on 3DS/Vita/Mobile. There's been plenty of good games released for Vita and 3DS that haven't come out outside of Japan yet such as Monster Hunter 4, Youkai Watch, Youkai Watch 2 etc And when they do it takes forever (Bravely Default, Animal Crossing, Tomodachi Collection, Rune factory 4 etc)

To cut it short, market changed and 3DS is where Japanese gaming is (at the moment). That said, there'll be plenty of good games for consoles. This gen is still in its infancy.

I don't have many complaints but maybe it's because my tastes have mostly been satisfied and because I don't need to wait for localisations. Not everything is doing well obviously but that's always true. I miss some things too.

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#12 Edited by mbradley1992 (590 posts) -

I think it's because it has permeated outside of gaming. When the last gen launched, they didn't have Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, Pandora, Twitch, etc. right out of the box. When I worked for a certain blue and yellow themed electronics retailer in 2009-2010, we were selling PS3s in the home theater department as a Blu-Ray player. Now, with the Xbox One TV stuff and the PS4 having all the video apps and things, it's become more than just a console.

Also, the indie explosion. Indies used to be limited to the PC. Now, you can get an indie game on most everything, so there's more variability and a certain depth to the library (or upcoming library) that didn't exist at the launch of last gen.

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#13 Edited by ll_Exile_ll (3010 posts) -

The notion that people were going to forgo console gaming in favor of phones and tablets was, and always has been, ridiculous. Mobile gaming has never come close to offerering the kinds of experiences you can get with consoles and PCs, and there are too many people that want those experiences to ever think the market would just shift to candy crush and clash of clans. The success of these machines isn't surprising in the slightest, the last generation lasted 8 years, people were ready for shiny new gaming devices.

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#14 Edited by SomeDeliCook (2353 posts) -

To be brutally frank, hopefully more towards actual games and less to music, movies, and all that other shit. Supporting netflix and other apps is totally fine, but when they announce all these partnerships or start throwing in music and movie sections of the main dashboard (like 360) it bugs the hell out of me; I bought a console for games, I'd like the development to go fully into supporting games. I understand the digital future means everyone wants all their content to be available all in one place, but it bums me out when E3 conferences spend so much time on non-game related news.

And its too late, but I wish the DLC era slowed down - its going to get to a point where you might not be able to access all the content for a game. Look at GFWL on PC, developers had to patch it out while games like Bulletstorm will forever be infected by it. If I buy a game from the 90's from Amazon or GOG, all the content is there readily available offline with no other outside executibles or services required (with the occasional HEY INSTALL GAMESPY? prompt)

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#15 Edited by ll_Exile_ll (3010 posts) -

@somedelicook said:

To be brutally frank, hopefully more towards actual games and less to music, movies, and all that other shit. Supporting netflix and other apps is totally fine, but when they announce all these partnerships or start throwing in music and movie sections of the main dashboard (like 360) it bugs the hell out of me; I bought a console for games, I'd like the development to go fully into supporting games. I understand the digital future means everyone wants all their content to be available all in one place, but it bums me out when E3 conferences spend so much time on non-game related news.

And its too late, but I wish the DLC era slowed down - its going to get to a point where you might not be able to access all the content for a game. Look at GFWL on PC, developers had to patch it out while games like Bulletstorm will forever be infected by it. If I buy a game from the 90's from Amazon or GOG, all the content is there readily available offline with no other outside executibles or services required (with the occasional HEY INSTALL GAMESPY? prompt)

I don't think there's any evidence to support your assertion that resources are being diverted away from games in favor of movies or music. The consoles having these kinds of things on offer is in addition to games, not in place of them. It's not as though prominent developers have decided to stop making games in favor of other types of media. These consoles are still primarily gaming devices, they just have more to offer, again in addition to games not in place of them.

Also, what E3 conferences have you been watching? The last several years both Sony and Microsoft (and obviously Nintendo) have spent 90%+ of their conferences talking about games (100% for Microsoft this year). It's been a long time since media has been the focal point of any press conference, both Sony and Microsoft realize that at this early stage in the generation serious gamers are the ones buying these consoles.