>State of the Console Warzzzzzzzzzzzz

>Most of my most productive creative thinking comes in the shower. And during this morning’s shower, I had an idea for a SFTC blogpost – taking a general lay of the land in the console war. 2008 is my first holiday season in which I have a vested interest in every console and handheld, and so I finally have as complete a sense as I’ll ever have of what my options are as a consumer.

Problem is, I pretty much knew how it was going to end even before I turned off the water. And this chart of each console’s attach rate pretty much speaks for itself.

Let’s face it: the Wii is a joke. I knew it was a joke even though I wanted one so desperately, and now that I have it, the only time I even think about it is when the stupid Mario Kart Wheel is taking up valuable real estate on my shelving unit. The last game I was genuinely excited about for it was freakin’ Boom Blox. Did I really spend $500 on a stupid Circuit City bundle for this? Is Wii Music really the big Wii holiday title? I read a quote this morning that sums it up quite well – this is from Sega’s Darren Williams:

I think on one hand the Wii has become the most expensive board game on Earth – it’s the kind of thing that families will play at Christmas, and probably won’t play again throughout the remainder of the year.

The PS3, on the other hand, has started to come into its own. Its roster of exclusive titles is still pretty minimal, but Little Big Planet is pretty great, and I’m looking forward to trying out Resistance 2 this weekend. If nothing else, though, it is a fantastic BluRay player and I take my movie watching very seriously.

That said, LBP’s troublesome online service (as well as the problems I’ve heard regarding SOCOM) only serve to highlight the problems with Sony’s online network. Many people have talked shit about Xbox Live and how you have to pay for it when you can have it on the PS3 for free, but here’s the thing: Xbox Live actually works, and when it doesn’t, it gets fixed pretty goddamned quickly.

Which brings me to the 360, of course, which is in its heyday. Gears of War 2 dropped today, only a week or so after Fable 2, and the NXE arrives in 12 days. (It should be noted that the PS3’s much-discussed HOME thing still hasn’t arrived, and its purpose still hasn’t really been clearly stated; meanwhile, the 360’s dashboard is getting a complete makeover with tons of new features and everybody’s getting it before Thanksgiving.) The vast majority of my gaming time is on the 360 these days, and I’m not even sure why anymore. I’d hate to think it was only because of Achievements; I’m not nearly the whore I was for them last year but I still kinda pay attention to them.

I would discuss the state of the handhelds, but it’s too depressing. My PSP collects dust and my DS doesn’t fare that much better.



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