In the portable and home console gaming world, we have witnessed many alternative ways to play pop up, as of late. No longer do gamers have to spend many dollars in order to purchase a gaming console. They also do not need to spend a lot of money on the games themselves, either. A lot of these new gaming consoles tend to be very cheap (when compared to the traditional alternatives), and that gives them a huge potential advantage. So what does the future of gaming look like? We are not certain, but we do know that one thing is clear: the times, they are a-changin’.
We are seeing a similar trend happen to the home consoles, too. There are so many upcoming home consoles heading into the next generation of gaming. Listing the obvious ones first, we have the next Xbox and PlayStation consoles coming along the way, and also a new Wii console that’s already out (the Wii U). As far as the alternatives go, the upcoming Ouya console continues to grow in popularity. The Ouya is listed for $100, and each new Ouya game is slated to have some sort of free-to-play aspect. The people behind Ouya have decided to produce and publish a new Ouya console every year – which I feel is far too frequent.
Barring that aside, we also have Valve’s Steam Box. The Steam Box will be, as you may guess, a console device that can play PC games in your living room with a controller. This, and the Ouya, are in my opinion the top two competitions that face against the traditional consoles. There are many more indie gaming consoles out there, as Independent Gaming lists a few. There is the Indiego, the GCWZero, the GameStick and the PawByte. Aside from these, I am sure that more consoles will pop into the next generation of gaming. How many, however, is not certain.
Another question comes to mind: will there always be a hardcore audience, that want hardcore albeit expensive games? I certainly hope so, as it is not a hidden secret that the hardcore titles tend to have better quality than their cheaper alternatives. However, the fate of these triple-A titles rely on quantity, as well as quality. Only time will tell if there are enough people still interested in hardcore gaming, or if they will be droned out by a massive audience of casual gamers, utilizing cheap new consoles.