It feels like I’m getting ready to go out on a blind date.
I know absolutely nothing about this next generation of game consoles, and that has me both excited and anxious.
For starters, what if I discover that the next batch of consoles are too stuck in their ways and unwilling to move forward? I might be ready for that next love in my life, but not if it means moving on to more of the same crap that hasn’t been working out in this current relationship.
On the other hand, what if the next generation and I meet and it turns out that they are actually way too radical for my tastes, and I’m just not yet prepared for the extreme changes they’ll be bringing into my life?
Or worse, what if we go out for our first night on the town and, in that instant, it suddenly dawns on me that I simply no longer have an interest in dating?
Luckily, unlike in real relationships (unless you’re a scoundrel), the next generation of game consoles offers (at least) three potential suitors for me to consider. While the Wii U launched late last year and proved to be too much like my ex, the original Wii, the upcoming consoles from Sony and Microsoft still have the potential to win my heart. It’s weird because part of me wants to see them succeed, but I’m also pretty dang comfortable with the relationships I’ve got going at this point.
For example, it feels like the PlayStation 3 and I are only just starting to really figure each other out and, yeah, I think we could be happy for a few more years. Then again, some of the stuff Shannon (everyone names their consoles, right?) does is really starting to wear on my last nerve. Her constant need to download and patch things when all I want to do is play a game is infuriating, and the same goes for the way she has trouble fully communicating with Trixie, the PS Vita I’m seeing on the side. And while Shannon offers lots of nifty apps and features, various omissions mean that she still hasn’t become my sole living room companion.
We have a good relationship, but it could certainly use some improvement. My concern is that, at this point, maybe Shannon simply doesn’t have any more room to grow. She’s coming up on being a decade old and, in terms of relationship growth, she may have already reached her limit.
Then again, there’s no guarantee that what comes next will be that much better than what I’ve already got. Sure, shinier graphics, new capabilities, some handy new applications and all that would be great, but what if the honeymoon phase ends far too quickly, only for me to discover that I’m stuck in a relationship that’s going nowhere fast? Or maybe I abandon the comfort of Shannon, who I know is flawed but I still have feelings for, only to discover that my new love interest and I simply don’t see eye to eye. It’s like, maybe I’m the one who is stuck in my ways and isn’t ready for the messiness of change, you know? Maybe that next console offers a bold new world of experiences I have no desire to be a part of.
At this point, my PC can’t handle any of the new AAA titles, but I find I’m happy enough with the odd assortment of lower end games I can grab and run off of Steam. I’ve never really been a PC gamer and, with consoles’ shift further towards becoming a multimedia hub, I’m not sure I’ll ever need to make that stretch into a gaming world mostly dominated by mouse and keyboard. If this next generation nails that “be all, end all” approach to entertainment, maybe I’ll be more willing to run headlong into the open arms of a PS4.
Then again, with pretty much every major game console known to man (save a 360) either plugged into a TV or readily available somewhere in the house, maybe my entertainment needs are pretty well covered at this point.
But, whether I’m ready or not, the next generation is coming. All sorts of rumors are making the rounds concerning various specs for the new consoles, what their controllers will be like, what games will be launch titles, etc. While nothing is certain, there’s a pretty good chance that we’ll be getting our first look at Microsoft and Sony’s new beauties at E3, if not sooner. Will they be the dream dates we’ve all been hoping for or will we decide to never give them a call after that first dinner and a movie?
Like I said, I’m excited for the possibilities, but also getting a little antsy about potential change. This current generation hasn’t been too bad, right? Maybe Shannon and I just need to spend a little more time together and rekindle the relationship. Or maybe what comes next will be the machine of my dreams and wash away all reservations in an instant.
Whichever way it goes, one thing has certainly become clear: I need to lay off the Nicholas Sparks novels.
Filed Under: Life
About the Author:
Ryan Winslett is an Arizona-based journalist and freelance writer. He is a contributing writer for Gaming Blend and his work has also appeared on Joystiq, Gamasutra and Joystick Division. His only crime is loving too much.
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