The Next Generation of Video Games
By Brandi Barnett
Game On!March 2007
By D. James O'Brien
Sony. Microsoft. Nintendo. These three manufactures are the Big Three of gaming excellence.
Gaming is no longer the sole occupation of basement nerds and computer techies. The digital age has placed console systems squarely in the mainstream.
Today’s commercials are not targeting solely the early teens that once made up the world of Atari and mall arcades.
An ad for the Game Boy Advance targets the idea of memory loss as a retiree-aged man struggles to remember an old friend’s name as an endorsement to get the small portable gaming system. Another targets a young couple as they trip through a city, searching for one another using the technology of the PSP (PlayStation Portable).
In the past, we had seen a slow approach to the concept of portable gaming systems. Sega and Nintendo fought it out for many years as to who would possess the superior gaming console, only to be trumped by technology and not each other. The progression from cartridge-style games to that of a disc paved the way for the hard-drive equipped models that most gamers are now accustomed.
Late 2006 welcomed the PlayStation 3 and the Nintendo Wii to an already competitive field of NextGen systems with a much earlier release of the Microsoft Xbox 360. Both the Wii and PS3 suffered from limited supply and many unhappy people did not have their reservations filled.
Which system is going to best fill the void in your gaming life? The Xbox 360 boasts a handful of brilliant shooters (games in which you view the action from a first-person view) and visuals that make you believe that you are knee deep in the jungles of Vietnam or on a faraway planet conjured by the world of Halo. Sales for Microsoft in the U.S. are staggering, but crossing overseas we see a dramatic shift to Sony and Nintendo.
Nintendo is still the go-to system for young children and those that love the nostalgic value of
yesteryear and silly venues. Sony remains a solid system for strategy, role-playing and a variety of shooters, but most gamers would not hesitate to weigh in on the side of Xbox in terms of platform and shooter-style games.
I guess it truly comes down to what you want from a system.Many people have welcomed the
world of online gaming. A variety of MMORPG (Massive Multi-Player Online Role-Playing Game) games like RuneScape and World of Warcraft have created a solid foundation of gamers.
Games, like most things in life, are advancing technologically faster than most people can possibly keep up with. Couple that with the rising costs of these games and systems, and we can see that this wave of NextGen systems is only a stepping stone into a much larger world of imagery and animation that we will see continue to grow at an exponential rate.