I haven’t bought a PlayStation 4 yet, and while I invariably will at some point down the line, for the time being, I just don’t see a reason to splash out £350 on a home console with very few games in the pipeline. I’m sure that will all change come E3, but at the moment, there’s DriveClub, which, let’s be honest, doesn’t sound all that great, and The Order, which while pretty, doesn’t look like a system seller. Yes, Uncharted has been announced, but we’ve all heard the stories. Even with the problems surrounding its development, it’s almost certainly going to be great when it finally arrives, but as to when that might be, well, that’s anybodies guess.
I’m sure some of you are screaming about the million and one indie games announced for the PS4 and the myriad of releases due before the end of the year. Yeah, that’s great. I love indie games as much as the next guy, but are indie games the reason that I go out and spend £300 + on a new console? No sir, they are not.
While some of my favourite games of the last-gen are indie titles, they still represent the icing on the cake as far as I am concerned. They’re great to have, and when I do buy a PS4, I’m sure I’ll pick up a whole bunch of them, but come on, are you really telling me that I should buy the PS4 for a bunch of games that I can play on my PS3, or heck, on the phone in my pocket? Well, you can do one as far as I’m concerned. I will buy a PS4 to play PS4 games, and at the moment, there aren’t enough PS4 games. It’s as simple as that.
If I were to use an analogy (and I believe I will), I would compare indie games to side orders. Some of them are delicious, some even better than the main course, but all the same, I don’t go to a restaurant for the side orders, I go for the main dish. The PS4, at the moment at least, is the video game equivalent of a restaurant that only serves sides……not the kind of restaurant I want to go to.
Now, I would like to stress again – I am not bashing indie games, I’m just saying that the primary reason that I buy a new console, a shiny new piece of hardware with enough grunt to fly my car to the moon, is to play video games that use that power. Say what you will about the Xbox One, but that console has better triple-A games and another bunch of impressive sounding titles already announced.
The PS4 is currently riding a wave of positive vibes and, in my opinion, a somewhat unfairly negative view of the Xbox One (all be it, one largely created by their own ineptitude), but really, how long will that last? How long can the PS4 continue to hold the higher ground without quality triple-A games on the horizon? Indie games are a great addition to a strong library, but the Vita is proof that a console cannot survive on indie games alone. Gamers will eventually want something that shows off the console’s unique strengths, and at the moment, the PS4 doesn’t have nearly enough of that. InFamous certainly looked the part, but I still don’t believe it’s a system seller – the PS4 is currently selling itself, and InFamous just happens to be one of the few exclusive games available for the console. Release the same game in 2 years, and it wouldn’t hit anywhere near the same numbers. And yes, the same goes for Killzone.
Of course, many will disagree (7 million sales don’t lie), but can the PS4 keep up this momentum? Can a barrage of indie announcements continue to paper of the cracks? They’re doing a great job at the moment, but if PS4 doesn’t deliver the goods at E3, I for one can’t see Sony continuing to hold the upper hand in a console war that I fully expect to go right down to the wire.
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