Thursday, November 23, 2006
PS3, Wii, Xbox 360...Hey That Rhymes!
I'm a gamer. I haven't been able to play as many console games since my son came around, and have as of late been playing more PC games. I still follow the gaming industry very closely though (one of my secret dream jobs would be to pen a game story...or at least jump around in a motion capture suit), and in case you've been under a rock on Mars in a cave under an ice glacier where the Martians hatch their clever plans to invade Earth to take it over and make us pets (see Porno for Pyros, "We'll Make Great Pets") you know that there are 3 next-gen console systems vying for ultimate domination over the 13-34 demographic.
These systems are (in order of launch date): the Microsoft Xbox360, Sony PS3, and the Nintendo Wii. Microsoft wanted to get the jump on Sony on the second round, and so far they've been building up their base, but let's face it, Microsoft has tons of money to throw at their gaming division and even though they're in the red they operate by the Gates credo: permeate and saturate the competitive landscape at all costs and you will be victorious. I digress...
All three systems are a huge step up from the previous generation, especially the Xbox360 and the PS3. Let's just face it - these two consoles vomit hot digital acid on the Wii, however, others feel that the Wii is a refreshing and welcomed alternative in the gaming world...I thought this video says it all.
One of the biggest things to consider, as I see it, there's also the new round of format wars associated with the gaming hardware and manifesting in Blu-Ray and HD-DVD. If these terms are foreign to you, that's fine. Don't worry about it. Do you remember Betamax and VHS, well it's basically the same thing. Microsoft and Toshiba are backing HD-DVD and Sony is backing Blu-Ray. Initially, these manufacturers "tried" to agree on one format, but it never panned out. Movie studios are also involved, as these new formats will dictate how production houses put their films on media to sell to you and me. Don't get me wrong, these discs both can store around 15-40GB, based on the number of layers the discs has, and this vast Midwestern plain of storage space allows for lots of high definition content, so both formats will knock your socks off. The systems that play either format are supposed to be backwards compatible with your existing DVD collection. Just as a comparison, the most DVDs can store is around 7.5 GBs - if it's a dual-layer.
PS3s are the most expensive, with the Wii bringing up the rear. Will I be getting one soon?
Nah. This time around the companies are battling to see who will have the biggest presence in your living room, gaming room, and family room. These consoles (primarily the 360 and the Wii) are designed to do more than just play games, and are GUARANTEED to be huge time-suckers on the aforementioned demographic group I mentioned before. I'll be sticking with my PC, which currently competes on equal footing with these consoles, and it allows me to do my blogging, gaming, ripping, media production, and whatever else I want to do.
But if any of you happen to get the PS3 under the tree this year I will be coming over to make sure that I properly spank aliens in Resistance: Fall of Man.
Oh, and my prime rib is in the oven now. It was lumbering out of the fridge this morning...I knelt before its divine presence and humbly seasoned its sublime countenance. It barely fit into the pan, but I lovingly squeezed it in. Wait til I deglaze that pan with the sherry...I weep with anticipation. Enjoy your break, folks.