In Response To: "PS4 Only Has Indie Games and HD Ports"

So say the Xbox fans. But is it fair to say the PS4 is only about indies and HD ports?

I've been hearing this for a while now, and usually from gamers in the Xbox camp:

"LOL No wonder PS4 is $100 cheaper; all it has are a bunch of little indie games nobody cares about and HD ports of last-gen games!"

Given the announcements thus far in 2014, I don't necessarily blame someone for seeing it this way. Granted, such a statement is wildly inflammatory and obviously designed to be insulting but at the core of it lies a kernel of truth. Well, at least for the time being.

The bottom line is that if someone asked me if they should purchase a PlayStation 4 right now, I'd have some questions of my own. I wouldn't immediately recommend that purchase because if you're looking for numerous AAA elite exclusives, you might want to wait until the holiday season.

As for the statement in the title, here's my response:

Historically, NO console has produced a ton of must-have AAA games in the first six months

This just doesn't happen. As much as we want it to happen, new consoles take some time to get going. I find it hilarious how everyone is always so surprised at the drought every new system goes through immediately after it first comes to market. Manufacturers try to launch the machine with some decent titles - and sometimes they do; the PS2, for example - but for quite a few months afterward, you don't get much. That's just the way things go.

It's unfortunate that summer is looking kinda empty but at the same time, it's hardly only the PS4 that's going to suffer through this drought. What does the Xbox One have? Neither system has much of anything that screams "must-have" between June and August; things get rolling again in September with Destiny. In the meantime, passing judgment on what a console "has" or "does" is utterly absurd.

At the end of the previous generation, everyone was begging for more innovation and originality...well...

Where are we seeing the majority of innovation right now? In the indie scene. I'm not one of those people who automatically assume an indie title is great just because it's made by a small team with a low budget. In truth, this usually results in a mediocre product and for obvious reasons. However, because such teams don't have publishers looking over their shoulders every step of the way, the designers can pretty much make whatever they want.

As such, we're seeing such an explosion of creativity on the small-budget side of the industry right now. I know they don't take advantage of the PS4's power, and I know such titles aren't the reason to own Sony's new console. I get that. However, complaining that they exist is just ridiculous, because it gives us a wide variety of freshness that we just don't see in AAA gaming right now.

At the bare minimum, it's a lot better than nothing, right? In previous eras, "nothing" is precisely what many consoles had to offer during those initial six months.

I must be missing this onslaught of HD ports

I know about Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition and The Last Of Us: Remastered. Am I missing the others? I know they released updated version of digital games like flOw and Dead Nation but beyond that, I can't quite justify the concept that PS4 is "all about" HD ports right now. I guess it's just because the Tomb Raider and The Last Of Us HD upgrades got a huge amount of attention and as such, they're often in the limelight.

Besides, HD upgrades were very common throughout most of the previous generation. That's really the era when it came into vogue, as that's essentially the generation that introduced high-def gaming to the world. Furthermore, I never understood the problem of bringing older games to new systems. Not everyone played everything the instant it came out, you know. Some of us have lives. Maybe some of us really appreciate that games we missed on the PS3 are now on - or coming to - the PS4, especially because the PS4 isn't backwards compatible.

As of now, what does the competition have?

I must also be missing this bevy of great games on the Xbox One that aren't available on Sony's machine. This drought affects both machines and at least the PS4 has plenty of great indie titles, several of which can't be found on Xbox One. I don't get how one fanbase can accuse the other of "not having something" when they certainly don't have it, either. This is not a war that will be resolved in six months or a year; it's going to take some time to develop, so tossing out labels now is meaningless.

This time next year, maybe we should revisit the above statement...

Published May. 1st 2014
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