Heroes And Villains: Console Gaming

image by Flickr user: PseudoGil
image by Flickr user: PseudoGil

Every year at E3 we have the so-called “winners” and “losers”. It’s usually a distinction of who you’re a fan of and your personal taste in games, but this year was very different wasn’t it. Sure we still had a “winner” and a “loser”, but in the wake of Microsoft’s awful announcement of the Xbox One and the pokes at those policies made by Sony at their press conference, the two opposing companies have been elevated from ‘winner’ and ‘loser’, to something resembling ‘hero’ and ‘villain’.

I admit that Sony’s game sharing video got me thinking in a similar way. I mean we had Microsoft coming out and making it sound like we would lose a large amount of control over our games, making it sound more like a service we’d signing up for rather than a product we’d have control over like we always have.That may not have been the point of Xbox One, but it sure sounded like it (and listing restrictions like they were features didn’t help). Then we had Sony saying that we could enjoy our games the way we always have.

The difference was pretty stark. Sony had not only won, but was the hero of E3.

What I’m wondering is this: what does this all mean?

Does it mean anything? In getting Microsoft to step back from their DRM policies, have we succeeded in keeping games defined as a product and personal property or have we prevented some sort of step forward for games? Online check-ins and DRM aside, some of the features Microsoft was planning sounded fairly interesting.

As an older gamer, I have a hard time imagining games as something other than a product. Something you pay for once and can use at your discretion. But as digital download becomes more accessible, the future of gaming could very well lie in the realm of the Cloud and dedicated internet just as the Xbox One would (and still may) have supported.

What do you think? Where does the future of gaming lie? Do Sony and Microsoft deserve their respective hero and villain status?

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Jacob says:

    I think the dramatization of winners/losers and heroes/villains you’re talking about comes from a lot of people who want to oversimplify things (something I notice you aren’t doing here, giving Microsoft at least some regard). I do wish the internet would wise up though and see that Sony is a business attempting to make a profit just like Microsoft. Neither one is a company “for the gamers.” Companies exist to turn a profit for themselves.


    1. Hatm0nster says:

      Something we need to make sure not to forget. Companies exist for profit,, not a bad thing but good to remember next time things get crazy like they did lately.


      1. Jacob says:

        No, not bad at all, in fact a very good thing. Sony and Microsoft only have the resources to make consoles cause shareholders give them the money to. They’ll stop if the company does stupid things that make their shares value go down, like instituting DRM that their competitors aren’t.


  2. renxkyoko says:

    It doesn’t really matter to me. I will buy both.


    1. duckofindeed says:

      I often just buy them all, too. Methinks this time I’ll have the willpower to just do the PS4, though.


  3. There will never be one system to rule them all.

    Sony deserve some kudos, as they had a similar scenario with the PS3 and its originally exorbitant starting price. The company as a whole struggled for a decent amount of time, as they placed more than a handful of their eggs in the home console basket, while their traditional strengths were caught up to by competitors.

    Microsoft will always seem megalomaniacal while they dominate PCs, and then try to branch out to new horizons. To their credit, they took the hint and changed their policies in wake of the backlash. It was the typical scaremongering of a new situation (ala Wii and motion controls), and I could understand their thought process.

    Nintendo are Nintendo, the weird eccentric grandfather of the home console family. I am a tried and true Nintendo home console brainwashee. Must… buy… Wii U… no, must resist… need new Zelda or Metroid or Mario first…


    1. duckofindeed says:

      I have become a Sony fan, but Nintendo is my “safe” console to go to, as they don’t seem to change as much as the others. Yeah, there are the motion controls now, but none of this nonsense of games becoming a service or us not being allowed to play used games. (I’m waiting for the next “Zelda” or “Super Smash Bros.” before I get the Wii U, by the way.)


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