Sunday, January 13, 2008

+1 To Yahoo! Games '08 Predictions

Yahoo! Games is spot-on for their predictions of the upcoming gaming year.

In particular, I think we'll see the following:

1) The Wii will jump the shark - I played the Wii for several hours over the holiday season and while it was fun, the novelty wore off quickly. I tried like mad to will Wii Sports into an online mode but to my dismay, that doesn't exist. You can only swing a virtual tennis racket in the confines of your own living room for so long while your neighbor is playing madden with friends across the country on a system two generations ahead of the Wii.

2) In spite of being the worst-marketed, most technically advanced gaming platform ever devised, the PS3 will rebound. For $200 more than the cost of a Blue Ray player, you also get a multi-cell processor on a linux-driven beast of a gaming system that helps society by lending it's processing power to protein-folding analysis in the off hours. I have a ton of stories about how its setup was better than the Wii's or XBOX 360, but those will have to wait for another post. In short, PS3 continues to lag in online content, but eventually I still believe that the hard-core gamers who spend the most money will continue to gravitate towards the PS3 and away from the Wii and the developers will follow. The early adopters I know (including me) are moving towards the better platform, in spite of Sony's seemingly insane approach of delivering the platform. I'm convinced devs will follow, nobody wants to build on the gaming equivalent of Visual Basic when the most advanced 3D platform ever is growing it's install base.

3) PC gaming will continue to deteriorate. I love my PC-only games. I think most games being developed today actually play better with a mouse and keyboard rather than two awkward analog sticks under-thumb. And while I've really loved playing WoW for the last few weeks, games like Crysis are simply making me miserable. By all accounts, I have plenty of hardware to play Crysis, but I still get Vista core dumps on a regular basis. As a result I'm rebuilding my awful NVRAID mirror on a regular basis (I'll never buy an NVidia RAID solution again, that monster of BIOS + Vista + Software RAID has cost me more time and pain than a decent hardware RAID solution ever would). Crysis is the best FPS I've ever played. It's immersive, well-designed and capable of making even the most modern GPUs sweat. None of that scares me, it's Vista's instability in 64-bit gaming and the resulting constant recovery exercise I'm forced to do that will push me closer and closer to purchasing console-only games.

1 comment:

Steve said...

1) Although I agree that the Wii is gimmicky, you underestimate the tenacity of Nintendo fanboys.

2) Once GTA hits, the console war will be over, just hope that Sony keeps their exclusive titles... well... exclusive. And don't put too much faith in the superiority of the hardware alone, because after all, you are assuming that devs (other than the Folding@home team) will actually utilize the 7 SPEs and not use middle-ware libraries to make easy ports (EA by far the biggest offender).

3) You mean people use PCs for something other than pr0n?