There was a ton of hype going into the releases of the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One in 2013. After almost a year, we have an idea of what both Sony and Microsoft have established. The PlayStation 4 has outsold the Xbox One by quite a margin, and after their second E3 and now Gamescom, we have an even better idea of the direction both systems are going. It still seems like Microsoft is depending on popular AAA titles and Sony is still introducing new IPs and Indie titles.
Some people are not pleased with what has been offered so far, while others believe what has been generated to this point surpasses previous console launches. A lot of promises have been broken as resolution and frame rate have not met initial demand in some games. Other games have come off as upscaled generation 3 games. Even with all of this, there honestly has been more games and content delivered in the first year than there was with the release of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Even the Wii U has taken almost two years to really take off with its releases of Mario Kart 8 and the upcoming Smash Bros. games. Here are our top five stories of the Generation 8 consoles thus far.
It all started with the release of the PlayStation 4, itself. Driveclub was suppose to be a launch title exclusive for the system. The game continued to get delayed and it finally has a release date set, albeit nine months later. Other games such as The Evil Within and Evolve were bigger IPs that followed suit. The developers behind Driveclub stated they wanted things perfect, only to have to admit they couldn't hit a consistent 60 frames per second (which we will bring up later). There are plenty of titles due out in 2015, but will this continue to be a problem going forward in this generation?
Remakes and Remasters
While the previous generation produced some remakes and remasters for a few titles such as Metal Gear Solid, the generation gap involved and the fact the PlayStation 3 could not play PlayStation 2 games (for the most part) garnered interest in Konami doing this. These are games that go back ten years. With the release of the Generation 4 systems, it seems that developers are kicking out more recent games such as Tomb Raider, and The Last of Us when people have recently purchased the game. It almost feels like these are time-fillers due to the lack of new games being released.
Not only are the games recent, but they are being sold for a full $59.99. Sony heard the cries about paying full price for The Last of Us, so they chopped the price by $10. Tomb Raider did release for $39.99, but future remasters such as GTA V and Halo Master Chief Collection will be selling for full price. Granted, Halo will appease fans, but again, it seems like a time filler for Halo 5.
The Inability to Achieve 1080p/60fps
The goal of the current generation was to have all games running at 1080p resolution and 60 frames per second. While some companies such as Konami and Guerilla Games have been able to achieve this, others have struggled and haven't followed through. You will see Call of Duty still achieve 60fps, but it will be upscaled to 1080p. Dead Rising 3, in fact, is only running at 720p and 30fps. This might have to do with the test equipment coming from PC for some of these developers. They reach these goals there, but once they put it on the hardware, it falls off. The developers would rather create a consistent experience, rather than having frames bounce back and forth.
Games like Driveclub and Destiny were delayed to help reach this goal and were not able to in the end. The problem with this "goal" is the timetable involved. Were developers looking to hit this off the bat or towards the end? There's a good chance that a substantial amount of homes will have Ultra HD televisions running at a 4K resolution once these systems come to a close. Think of the last generation when it released. Affordable HD at that time was 720p, then we saw 1080p and eventually 3D televisions. After Gamescom, it looks as if the true "next generation" will be approaching soon with games like Silent Hills.
The whole point in purchasing a next generation consoles is to have games with a substantial leap in graphics and scale. Sure, Resogun is a blast, but a lot of these indie games that come included for PlayStation Plus could not only easily run on last generation hardware, they could probably run just fine on a phone. These feel like the other half of the "time fillers" along with the remastered games. Yes, Outlast is a beautiful game, but all these other indie games announced aren't worth forking out for a new system. People fork out the $400 to get games like Evolve and Destiny.
As of Gamescom 2014, its pretty much official that Sony and Microsoft want to lure you into buying a system with a game you might have liked. There's already more specific bundles this generation then there was during the last one, and it hasn't even been a year! It all started with the Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes bundle with the PS4, then there was Titanfall, The Last of Us and Destiny. Now, Microsoft has added one for almost every new major IP they have coming out. I mean, yeah, you'll get something out of the deal, but the Advanced Warfare bundle is $499.99 without a Kinect (which has been thrown under the bus). It just feels a bit overkill.