There’s been a lot of talk recently about the rumors surrounding the next-generation of consoles from Microsoft and Sony. Sony released the video below announcing a press conference on February 20th. Few solid details have arisen as to what the conference is going to be about, but most people believe they are announcing the “PS4” (not the official name, but what everyone is calling it at the moment).
As you can see, the teaser gives anxious gamers little-to-no information. However, the rumors are flying. Engadget summarized what has been making it’s way through the rumor mill. And VGLeaks has published this article about their specs predictions for the PS4.
The biggest rumor that has everyone talking is how both Sony and Microsoft have been considering going disc-less with these new systems.
Apparently the lords of the console industry are going to make it so you must have an internet connection to play games. When I first heard this, I thought, “Well, it will suck to not be able to play games if the internet goes down.” After reading more opinions, I’m more concerned with losing the ability to sell and trade games.
Gamers and retailers alike will feel the impact of such a change. In a few years game shops will become practically irrelevant if everyone can only buy games online. As a gamer on a budget, I would have to be much more choosy about which games I purchase, knowing that I couldn’t re-sale them.
I currently have a Steam account, which is a site where you can purchase, download, and play a variety of games. This is essentially what Sony is attempting to do, except through the PS4 rather than a PC.
Many of the games on Steam are PC-only. But I own a few that are cross-console games, which I chose to buy on Steam rather than buy a hard-copy. Skyrim would be a prime example of this.
When Skyrim was released, I decided to get it on PC because my computer could play the game at a much higher level of quality than my Xbox 360. Not to mention, it would allow for me to mod the game if I wanted to (there’s probably a way to modify games on consoles, but I’ve never looked into it).
I was actually at a Skyrim party at my friend’s house during the midnight release of the game. While my pals who were on their 360s were getting attacked by a dragon in the opening scene, I spent an hour dealing with several server issues. This was probably due to everyone and their uncle trying to get Skyrim downloaded on Steam at the same time.
Despite these troubles, I would still buy Skyrim through Steam all over again. There are certain times when there are more advantages to buying a game online (better graphics, mods, ect). However, there is definitely something lost when you buy any media product via the Internet and only get to experience it digitally.
I still have several of the boxes and cases for games I bought years ago. It’s fun to go back and look at them, read the silly instructional booklets, and display them in my apartment to awe my guests with my nerd-cred. But, I’m starting to think hard-copies are soon going to be a thing of the past.