When you’ve reached the future, where else is there to go?

by Travis Woodside on

Video games are currently in an awkward phase of their life. The generational leap (previously expected every five years or so) is filled with enormous amounts of mystery. No one really knows where things can go from here. We’ve got good graphics (except on the Wii) and we’ve got fantastic online integration in place (except on the Wii). We’ve got motion controllers, normal controllers, no controllers, and even kids with chicken pox. So where does the next console generation take us?

I'll always be right in your pants.

hings used to be so simple. When we had the NES we were dreaming of better graphics. When we had the SNES we were dreaming of 3D. When we had the 64 we were dreaming of better 3D. In the past, all console generations were about improving the graphical power of any would be console. This sort of mentality doesn’t exist anymore. Now we’re all thinking outside the box. We’re trying to figure out how to join our souls with the game like E.T. did with Elliott and Michael Jackson. If I have a heart attack my future console better know it and make Super Video Game Sniper spasm out. We’ve got to cram a million features into the system that have nothing to do with actually playing video games. We’ve got to have iPad controllers and flying Hot Wheels racers being shot out of our television. We’ve got to have stuff because people like stuff.

What I mean to say is that I think that, by and large, simple is better. So maybe we’ve got to get back to wanting better graphics (and in turn, games that can do more things) rather than doodads and whistles. There should be nothing wrong with Nintendo releasing a brand new console that is basically just the Wii with tremendously improved graphic capability and streamlined online interface. Instead I fear Nintendo thinks they have to do something just as crazy and new as the Wii was at the time just because that’s what people expect (and that’s what MS and Sony think needs to happen now as well).

You’ve already got tons of new fans thanks to the Wii, Nintendo. Now show them what a cool system upgrade can do. Please don’t worry too much about throwing together some wildly new thing for the sake of throwing together a wildly new thing. Then again, how much better can graphics get?