Category Archives: Console Gaming

Used to be Hardcore

I’ve been wondering lately if the X-Box 360 is the last console I’m ever going to own.  I have to confess to a lack of enthusiasm over the X-Bone and the PS4, and it’s mainly because of the sort of gamer I have become and the sorts of games that are marketed as console games today.  The idea that I would fail to keep up with console gaming is a little disturbing to me, since I have continuously owned a console of one sort or another (sometimes more than one) since the SNES.  But there it is.

I talked here about how, as gaming becomes a more integral part of our way of life (what scholars call the rise of ludic culture), different kinds of games seem to be connected more tightly to different mediums of play.  Cross-overs do still happen of course, but it’s becoming common for a game, for example the up-coming Dragon Age: Inqusition, to have its main iteration on one device, and then supplementary games on other devices, tailored to those devices and the way people use them.   Console gaming for example has solidified into “hardcore”, a certain family of games aimed at someone who thinks about themselves in a certain way.

The only modern console games that can really hold my attention over a long period of time, and thus the only ones I consider worth playing, are fighting games (and more specifically, Street Fighter games), and sandbox games (again, more specifically, Elder Scrolls games).  I have a love-hate relationship with Elder Scrolls games though: I love the freedom and the ability to tailor your character, but I hate the clunky combat.  Hate it.  Why can’t it be good?

I don’t care at all about shooters any more, if I ever did beyond a party game with my friends and family.  Borderlands is fun for solo play but I lose interest at about level 20.  I like to think I like C-RPGs with good stories, but apparently I actually don’t.  I haven’t got past about seven hours of play in one since Dragon Age: Origins, so let’s be honest here: they interest me at the beginning but can’t hold my attention.  Never cared about racing games (I can’t drive, remember?), or sport games.  Annualised franchises make me feel rebellious.  Oh, you expect me to buy that just because?  Good luck mate…

So am I really going to buy a five to six-hundred dollar console, that spies on me, just to play the next generation of Street Fighter a few times a year?  That would not be a very wise thing to do, and I am at least trying to get through my life a little wiser than I was at the beginning.

Till next time, have a safe and happy holiday, if you have a holiday.  In fact how about I just wish a blanket safety and happiness to everyone?

James