The five biggest no-brainers in gaming
These days, as Journey’s Austin Wintory makes history by being the first video game composer nominated for a Grammy, it is becoming less and less crazy to consider that video games, those beep-boopin’ screen pictures from the 1980’s, may finally be accepted by the general population as an art. However, we’ve also just made it through another holiday shopping season. You hear about it all over the place. Microsoft moved 750,000 Xbox 360’s Black Friday weekend. That’s huge, but it’s also actually DOWN from the 960,000 they sold last year. Wowee. People literally fight each other for the privilege to purchase the best and most popular games for their kids. Yikes. AAA video games make more money than most blockbuster films. Nuts. Obviously, art or not, when it comes down to it, video games exist primarily for one simple reason. That’s right, dudes: makin’ money.
And yes, I can totally see why this might seem depressing, but guess what? Gamers are passionate about the games they play. There’s an entire culture built around the consumption of this media. People’s lives can be improved by enjoyable video game experiences. We freaking love video games, and evil/capitalist or not, it’s possible to make a lot of people happy and still make a bunch of money off of them. You just gotta listen every once in a while, and give the people what they want.
After all, every gamer has their holy grail, that one beautiful thing that would bring with it total satisfaction and bliss, if only the powers that be got their crap together and made it happen! And so, we’ve compiled a list. Below you will find the five most obvious and frequently fan-requested things in the world of video gaming that, if they ever existed, would just absolutely succeed. Each one of them will make your heart hurt. Ladies and gentlemen, the five biggest no-brainers in gaming:
1. Reissue Old Consoles For Cheap
Likelihood of this ever actually happening: 20%
The other day, I went to my local mom n’ pops video game store, and I felt like playing a bunch of old games, and so I bought a RetroDuo, which plays both NES and SNES games with ease. It cost me $70, and it works beautifully. Here’s the thing, though: It’s just not the same. The RetroDuo is small and light as a result of the more modern methods of production that were used in building it. It’s silver and black, not that classic gray, and while impressively similar, the controllers don’t click and clack in exactly the right way to make me say “Aw, yeah. I’m playing a freaking Nintendo”. I also had to do a fair bit of searching to find one, because RetroBit Games, the company that made it, is significantly smaller than the guys that just sold 400,000 Wii U’s all over the world.
But hey, what if you could walk into a Target or a GameStop, head to the retro area of the electronics section, and just grab a NES or a SNES off the shelf for $20? That would be incredible, right? Or what about a Genesis? Or a PSOne for everyone who doesn’t wanna drop $250 on a PS3 just because they want to replay Chrono Cross? This would be great for companies like Sega and Atari, who could sort of halfway get back into the console market, without even having to developing more games. Plus, imagine all the cool homebrew stuff that would probably pop up if all the retro consoles were available to the mainstream again. The possibilities are endless, and they’d sell like hotcakes. Someone get on this, please?
2. Everybody Copy Playstation Plus
Likelihood of this ever actually happening: 80%
Playstation Network, as most of you know, is totally free. You can play video games online with friends out of the box. On Xbox 360, it costs you about $60 a year for the same features with the Xbox Live Gold premium service, which is kind of a bummer. PSN has a $50 premium too, but since online play is free, they had to come up with a bunch of other things to offer. This service is called Playstation Plus, and by golly, it’s great. It downloads updates for your PS3 and all your games while you sleep, you get a bunch of cloud storage so you can access your save files from anywhere, certain games are available for purchase at discount prices, and OH YEAH, THE FREE STUFF. Besides a bunch of great free themes and avatars, you are also able to download around 20 major titles for both PS3 and Vita, which you can play for FREE as long as you have the service. Titles are available for a few months until they rotate in new ones, but as long as you have them downloaded, you can continue to play them, even if they’re no longer available. You’re also able to download Full Game Trials, in which entire brand new games can be downloaded and played within a brief, yet adequate time limit in order to try them out. Yeah, it’s freaking amazing. You can basically just pay $50 a year, and as long as you don’t absolutely need to buy the newest games as soon as they come out, you’re pretty much good on content for the whole year. It’s crazy.
So, why the hell isn’t everyone else doing this? Shoot, I’d pay $50 MORE per year for a similar feature on Xbox Live, and if Nintendo did this, and it applied to the 3DS as well as the Wii U, well, then you’d probably just have to butter my butt and call me a biscuit because that’d be it. I’d be done. There’s literally no reason for any console manufacturer not to do this, and in fact, even though it’s not a thing that has ever been promised to me, I’m actually sort of mad at Microsoft and Nintendo for not getting on this already. Damn, guys, step it up!