What If the Next Generation Sucks?

We're all excited for the next generation of console gaming to arrive, but what happens if it doesn't live up to the hype?

Titanfall, Infamous: Second Son, Quantum Break, a future Halo game, something new from Naughty Dog… These are some of the biggest titles headed to either Xbox One or PlayStation 4 over the coming months. The internet is showering these games with praise, based mostly on previews and demos.

There aren’t many people who have actually been able to sit down and have extensive hands-on time with any of these games, yet we’re already predicting them to be amazing “next-gen” experiences. But what if they don’t live up to the hype?

What If Titanfall Sucks?

What if Titanfall, a game that has been proclaimed to be the greatest thing since the invention of the thumbsticks, absolutely sucks? What if it’s like Call of Duty, only not as cool, not as smooth, and super glitchy? All we really know at this point is that it’s an online first-person shooter that lets you control mechs. Put that simply, it doesn’t sound all that exciting. If the graphics, gameplay, and online functionality aren’t exceptional, this game could end up being a major letdown. And I don’t even want to think about what might happen if the launch doesn’t go smoothly

What If Infamous: Second Son Sucks?

And what about Infamous: Second Son? Sucker Punch is deviating from what has made the first two games in the series so great, in that no longer will you be playing as Cole with the ability to use electricity to take down enemies, but rather you’ll harness the power of smoke and use fire to wreak havoc. So far the game looks pretty and is set in an alternate reality version of Seattle, but what if the gameplay isn’t as fun as expected? What if fans of the series find the use of fire less exciting than electricity? What if the gameplay isn’t as fun as the high-flying, parkour excitement that dominated the first two games?

What If the Consoles Themselves Suck?

Outside of the games, what if these systems just aren’t what we wanted out of the next generation? We already know the Xbox One has had some issues running a few games at 1080p (Call of Duty: Ghosts as an example), but even the PS4 is only built as well as a mid-range PC from 2012. Are these systems going to be powerful enough to last another 7-10 years and continue to push the envelope in the graphics and gameplay departments?

And what about other things like load times, connecting with friends, uploading gameplay to the internet, swapping between apps, and Kinect/PlayStation Camera? What if going all-digital with your games like the companies want you to isn’t quite as good in practice as it is on paper? These are all services or components that are being touted as part of the next-gen experience, but if they don’t work well, then what have we really gained by upgrading?

Sure, it will be great being able to stream your gameplay directly to Twitch, but what if it doesn’t work very well or causes extreme lag? What if the instant swapping between games and apps isn’t really so instant? What if the motion capture devices are not as significant an upgrade in terms of actual functionality as the companies say they are?

As Long As the Games Are Fun...

Look, I’m not saying all of this to scare you, because to be quite honest, even if there are a few hiccups along the way, the bottom line is that your games are going to look and play a lot better than they do on the current generation. Maybe a few of the early promises from the company won’t pan out (I’m still really concerned about Sony’s remote play promise), but for the most part, I expect the games will see a measurable benefit from upgrading. Playing Titanfall with your friends will be a great, fun experience. Infamous: Second Son will be a beautiful, epic, open-world adventure. And at the end of the day, that’s really all that matters.

I truly don’t think either company can live up to all the hype that has been built up over the course of the year, but the good news is we’re about to find out. So as you plug in your new console this month, and prepare to dive into whatever launch games you’re anticipating, hopefully, the experience is everything you’ve ever wanted.

Happy gaming! 

Featured Columnist

Proud gamer parent and freelance journalist (and fundraiser). I cover anything and everything that's interesting about the gaming industry, and even some stuff that isn't so interesting.

Published Aug. 17th 2021
  • Max Jay
    Featured Columnist
    I think it's safe to say that there are going to be some growing pains for the first 6-12 months. The thing is that people (gamers especially) tend to forget that this is totally normal!

    Obviously there are going to be some visuals that blow our mind - like the first time you came out of the sewers in Oblivion. But we'll also see something as terrible as Horse Armor (also from Oblivion).

    I would also feel pretty confident making a broad proclamation: Titanfall and inFamous are both going to be great. Respawn doesn't have a track record, since they're a new company - but they ABSOLUTELY have something to prove to the gaming community after the COD fiasco a few years back. Sucker Punch, on the other hand, may be too big to fail at this point. Sony has put too much money and time into that company for them to sully their very well established name by putting out a garbage game. The only thing that really concerns me with Second Son are those tacked on touch controls.

    I wonder what this generation's Horse Armor will be....
  • Proto Foe
    Senior Intern
    Who is up for betting it'll be some sort of DLC mount armor in The Elder Scrolls Online?

  • Ryan Kerns
    Featured Columnist
    I think Killer Instinct is pretty much a preview of what's to come. The game is launching with only 6 characters and no arcade mode with the rest of the game coming by March of next year.

    I think we're going to be seeing a lot of unfinished games rushed out the door for a lower price tag... and when the game is actually done you can buy the DLC that completes it.
  • Proto Foe
    Senior Intern
    Great read :)

    GS is strongly becoming an hourly visit for me!
  • GameSkinny Staff
    That's what we love to hear!
  • Ryan Kerns
    Featured Columnist
    I don't think the XBone/PS4 generation will be as long as the generation we're on right now... too many things like Oculus Rift and 4K resolution that's going to push new displays these boxes aren't capable of doing.
  • Proto Foe
    Senior Intern
    Xbox One comes ready to do 4k out of the box. PS3 can do 4K images, so I would imagine they'd take that to the next level with the PS4 (not confirmed).
  • Ryan Kerns
    Featured Columnist
    Neither system is powerful enough to run a game in a native 4k resolution... they would simply be upscaling the image similar to playing a Xbox 360 on a 1080p display. To even run PC games at 4k you need multiple high end graphics cards running together.
  • Proto Foe
    Senior Intern
    That is very true :) And with the price curve of 4K, or SuperHD TV sets, it'll be the tail end of the Xbox One/PS4 generation until they are affordable.

    No point in having the peanut butter without the jelly.
  • Ryan Kerns
    Featured Columnist
    totally agree! and welcome to the site :)
  • Ashley Shankle
    Associate Editor
    It won't affect me one bit! :D I am perfectly happy sticking to PC.
  • Coatedpolecat
    Featured Correspondent
    Another great read. Thanks.

New Cache - article_comments_article_9990