So we’ve seen what Nintendo intends to bring to the next generation. The WiiU is comprised of a console and a tablet-like controller that allows you far more immersion into the gaming world than we’ve had originally, but that’s always been Nintendo’s survival tool. They strayed away from the normal controller based gameplay in favor of something motion based, giving the player essentially free reign to a degree on what they did in a game. Slashing the air ended up cutting down an enemy in game, and multiple other actions did other things not to mention the variety of mini games made endlessly fun (I.E. Mario Party). My question concerning that is, “what comes next?”. While we can easily look at Nintendo, who have already spoiled their next gen console for the masses and say, “That was obviously the next step in their evolution.”, is it really all that simple? Sure enough we’re all pretty bias considering we already know what they’re bringing to the party, but I can’t say that I would have said that a few months ago when speculation was still the norm.Where do we really go from here? Do we continue on the straight and narrow path that Sony and Microsoft have been taking? We know from experience that these two in general stick to the more robust and cinematic titles, keeping their gameplay fairly similar through all iterations of their devices. They choose to stick to the traditional controller scheme that was merely updated throughout the years. I can attest to that being a good idea, at least in the short run, as they’re considered the heavy hitters of the gaming industry nowadays, dethroning (to an extent) the once mighty Nintendo. As much as people bicker about who has the best consoles or what system has the best releases, we primarily only consider the Xbox 360 and the Playstation 3. Is that really the case? Are these two gaming giants really the best of the best that we have? Surely I would have to agree in that they both have better graphics and a much more mature game selection than Nintendo, but I still think the Wii still stands on par with them.
While we still hear about the general complaints concerning the sales of the PS3 (which had a price reduction) and the cost/benefit analysis of paying for Xbox Live, I have yet to hear a single complaint concerning Nintendo’s system that doesn’t relate to the power of their hardware. While the internet gaming generation and the subsequent ‘pc master race’ ideologies still reign supreme over the helpless individuals who enjoy something ‘different’, the numbers don’t lie. While the Wii’s innovation hasn’t exactly sparked the greatest industry breaking revolution, it has shown us that there can be more beyond the simple analog stick, shoulder button gameplay we have today. While motion capture in gaming hasn’t been around for a while, I believe that new avenues for gaming will be opened up exponentially as the days go by, if not the years. My point in all this, however, is to merely speculate about what we get next.
With the advent of the Oculus Rift gaming headset, we’ve delved further into the VR world than we had previously, giving us a level of immersion that couldn’t be reached with a television regardless of how many years go by. In this regard, I wonder how many more years it will take for someone to simulate a VR room like they have aboard the Enterprise. Additionally, who would bring such a device to the plate? Will Microsoft or Sony decide it in their best interest to invest in some of the technology we’re seeing today, or will they stick to the tried and true method of sole controller based gameplay. I believe we aren’t limited in any way concerning what we can do with technology. The Rift headset merely solidified my belief in that fact. While we haven’t seen any hard numbers concerning the device or gauge its worth, the fact that it exists is enough for me. The Google Glass project also builds on this idea and excites me further, but that technology is worth talking about another time.
So…where do we go from here? It puts us in an interesting place, considering our generation is really the first to truly grow up with the advanced technology we have today. We’ll oversee an advent of truly amazing things from the future, much more so than any generation prior. Hopefully humanity will never stop innovating. While I am a huge fan of the traditional couch based controller gaming, it would be incredibly refreshing to actually have something groundbreaking in the industry. While that doesn’t have to happen now, I wonder what we’ll get when it does. Let me know what you guys think in the comments below, and check out our other articles for everything entertainment!