I think that for now, I’ll sit the next generation out.

The next generation of gaming consoles have been revealed. Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s Playstation 4 will be coming out this fall, and Nintendo’s Wii U has been out for a while.

… and honestly, nothing about any of them grabs me.

The last couple of generations have had games come out close to launch that have made one console a system seller for me. Last generation, it was Gears of War for the Xbox 360. The generation before that, it was Metroid Prime for the Nintendo GameCube. This time around, however, there isn’t a game that really sells me on either console. There also isn’t a feature that grabs me on either console. I say “either” because right now, the choices are between the Xbox One and the Playstation 4; if we get a Wii U, it’ll very likely be Jennifer’s console as the Wii we have now is primarily used by her.

I think that with this generation, my choice may end up being the same one as my choice during the Sony Playstation/Nintendo 64 generation: the PC.

Fortunately I don’t think I’ll need to buy anything in the way of new hardware. The video card in my main PC is up to snuff for gaming, and I made sure a while ago my system has more than enough RAM. The one exception may be the hard drive, and that’s because it’s a Western Digital WD Green drive. I’d likely move to a WD Black or something similar from another manufacturer.

As far as upcoming games go, pretty much all of the ones I want are coming out for PC as well. I had funded Kickstarters for Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded and Shadowrun Returns, so I’ll automatically get PC versions of those. In addition, Infinite Crisis will apparently be a PC exclusive. I’m on the fence regarding two other games; I’m not sure whether I’ll get them for the PC or the Xbox 360. Those games are Diablo 3 and Batman: Arkham Origins. While the Xbox 360 is hooked up to a bigger screen, I may get more life out of the PC. Then again, with the possible exception of my Super Nintendo, all of my old consoles are still in working order.

That leads me to another point. I still have a Pile of Shame that needs to be cleared out, and it goes back quite a way. Among the games I have that I still need to complete:

  • Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2 for PC
  • Vampire: The Masquerade: Bloodlines for PC
  • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker for GameCube
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for GameCube
  • The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for Game Boy Advance
  • Final Fantasy VII for Playstation
  • Final Fantasy VI for Super Nintendo

I’m sure there are some other games I’m missing. The point, though, is that even without the current generation and next generation of games, I’ve got enough games waiting to be played that I can keep busy without having to worry about the new stuff. As it stands, if this generation runs about the same as the last one did, the only problem I might have with going PC-only is that there is only one game series that I play that didn’t get a close-to-simultaneous release to PC, and that’s Mortal Kombat. If WB Games does what they did for the last MK, my worst case scenario is that I may have to wait two years after the console release to play the next MK game. That’s assuming, of course, that I don’t buy a console between now and then…

In any event, I’m staying out and going with PC not because I think it’s the “savior of gaming” (last I checked it’s in last place behind console), but because it’s what I have, and it seems to me to be the least worst option. Microsoft has earned its console’s nickname of “Xbone”, and I don’t trust Sony after their PR fiascos of the last decade (though my friend Patrick McCarron made a good defense of Sony in a discussion we had over IM). I’m taking a “wait and see” approach, and if it turns out I miss this generation, well… I’ve done it before.

I can do it again. :-)