Monthly Archives: June 2013
For the last six years there’s been an annual trend in the video game industry. A new Call of Duty game is released, the internet bitches about it and yet the new Call of Duty breaks its own records; the latest game made $500 million in 24 hours. While I’m not an ardent supporter of the Call of Duty franchise, I find it difficult to argue with those numbers. Making half-a-billion dollars in one day is ridiculous; it’s near maddening that anything could make that much money in 24 hours. While I share many of the internet’s criticisms of the COD games, not too long ago I made an interesting discovery when I was examining the Pokémon games; another franchise that is continually selling well. The biggest criticism of the Call of Duty games is that few changes are made each year and that the gameplay has essentially been the same since 2007. I realized that this criticism applies to the Pokémon games too, so I asked myself: “Is Pokémon worse than Call of Duty?”
If you’ve played one Call of Duty game you’ve played them all; the player aims down the sights, shoots a bunch of bad guys, and follows a linear path of objectives for each mission. The online multiplayer hasn’t changed much either; the focus has been on customized loadouts with weapon attachments, perks and killstreaks. The loadouts are very flexible in design and accommodate a variety of play-styles. The player can choose from a large number of weapons from shotguns to sniper rifles. While Call of Duty doesn’t features vehicles, no other shooter can pull off a better team deathmatch experience. The gameplay is very smooth and responsive; it has an appeal for anyone who likes shooters.
Although at the time of writing this, E3 isn’t “technically” over, the biggest news has already been made. For me, this has been one of the most exciting and memorable E3s in recent memory. There were many surprise announcements and a lot of games to be excited for. I feel much of the skepticism over the next generation of consoles has worn off. I have a lot of things to say about E3, but I think I should talk about the biggest news first. Last week I went over what Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony needed to do at E3. Coming out of E3, all three companies were successful.
Sony absolutely knocked it out of the park with their press conference. Sony finally revealed the look of the PS4 as well as a price and a release date. At $399, the Playstation 4 is $100 cheaper than the Xbox One and $200 cheaper than the launch price of the Playstation 3. Sony’s strategy for E3 was excellent and adaptive almost seeming tailored against the criticisms of the Xbox One. Sony wants consumers to compare their console to Microsoft’s Xbox One. Sony’s new console has answer for everything that the new Xbox offers. The PS4 will play used games and will not require an internet connection at all. Single-player games can be played offline and physical games can be lent freely among friends. Furthermore PS4 games are not region-locked. Meaning games can be bought, or even lent across continents.
This coming Tuesday the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) will begin.For those unfamiliar with the event, E3 is an annual gaming fair that showcases off new games and press conferences by major game developers. It is the biggest event in the video game industry. The press conferences of the Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo are points of interest because all three companies have a home-gaming console on the market. These press conferences are even more important this year because all three companies are going into E3 facing a particular challenge. Unlike previous years, no company has a clear advantage meaning whatever happens could decide the outcome of the next generation of consoles. While there are many things that could happen, here’s a rundown of what needs to happen for Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo in order for them to improve their current situation. Read the rest of this entry