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Can the gaming industry support 3?


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#1 of 18 Joe Rigali

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Posted October 30 2001 - 03:11 AM

Do you think that all 3 systems will do well?

Which one will do best?

I do think that the industry can support all 3.

The Dark Horse however will be the X-box. If Microsoft does this thing right - they can steal a huge share of the market away from Sony and Nintendo. (remember how alot of people were laughing about Sony making a game system 6 years ago).

If X-box can get quality and quanity out to the gamers - then they stand a huge chance of taking away alot of business. Sony has the most to lose. Nitendo will succeed in the gaming industry reguardless of how well the Gc does. They already showed that they can survive without the #1 console. They OWN the handheld market. I wouldnt be surprised if this is Nintendos last Home console. They could still make games for Microsoft and Sony and make a killing as well as continue to operate of the profits of their handhelds. Sega's doin it - so why not Nintendo?

Nintendo can make a splash if they can get the good games to their system. Your average gamer is now in his late teens. Sure you should have games out there geared toward kids, but you also cant close your eyes to the majority market. (17-28 years) You could make a game PG rated and then at the same time release a "directors cut" of the same game - geared toward adults. I like what Sony did for Twisted Metal. (Black for PS2 and Small Brawl for PSx) Market one game for the kiddies and the other for the adults. The kids could still enjoy Resident Evil - but have it toned down - and then we adults can have a violent and graphic M version.

I think that Nintendo and other companies could have a unique marketing tool. They edit movies for TV, they release unrated directors cut of movies - why not do the same for games? Games are becoming almost as mainstream as movies - they make tons of $.


Sony holds its future in its own hands. I think alot of what happens will affect Sony. X-box is maily targeting their users. Sony needs to get the Hard drive and broadband out, and then have exclusive rights to online games like Star Wars Galaxies. Its time to push designers to new levels of gaming. How cool would it be if in the next GTA3 it is an online world, and you start out as a thug - join a gang and eventually move up through the ranks to be a gang boss or mafia don? and while your playing someone is doing the exact same thing except working with the Yakuza? And then one of your jobs is to whack him, or he's after you and you gotta get to your safe house. And failing the mission doesnt mean you restart it, but you lose face to your respective gang.


And dont charge us to play your game - we are already spending $ on the dang thing (ala phantasy star online ver 2) and I dont want to spend an extra 10 dollars a month. the game isnt worth spending 50 bucks for it, and then an extra 120 a year. Thats more than 1/2 the cost of a gamecube. Actually add the game and the service fee then you almost could buy a Gc.


Anyway these are my thoughts and I would love to hear any feedback/debate

#2 of 18 Jason Seaver

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Posted October 30 2001 - 04:48 AM

Well, back in the long-forgotten days of pre-1984 gaming, Atari, Coleco, and Mattel all managed to make a decent living, so there's precedent for it. I think that the industry can support all three, depending on Microsoft's patience.

Sony's already cemented their presence for the next year or two with the PS2, and Nintendo is at least comfortable enough in their niche to last for a couple of years. The big question, to me, is whether Microsoft will stay in the gaming business long enough for the consumer to catch up with the Xbox.

Make no mistake - it's going to happen, for all of certain posters' feelings that the Xbox includes too much. But with $300 Dolby-Digital-in-a-box packages available, 5.1 is going to start migrating from the HT to bedrooms and dorm rooms. Broadband is going to become more available, and now that HDTV's have cracked the $1000 barrier, they're going to become more of a popular consumer item. And the Xbox is the only system that really takes advantage of this; with good software, it could siphon off the high-end gamers the same way DVD killed LD. Assuming a possible slow start doesn't cause Gates to shut it down faster than you can say "Microsoft Bob".

Basically, three systems can survive if they can expand the market. Sony has done this, to a certain extent, with the PS2 - at least some of those "PlayStation 2 Compatible" stickers on DVDs got the attention of folks who wouldn't otherwise look in the games section. The Xbox's survival, I think, depends on it becoming the next buzz box, like DVD was, where people stop in the stores and drop their jaws, thinking "look at what this thing can do!" How MS can really demonstrate the system's high-end capabilities to the consumer, I don't know. A kiosk with a 21" NTSC TV and weak stereo won't do it.

As to the whole on-line thing, I think there would have to be a per-month charge for it to be economically viable for the hardware/software guys; however, it would have to be a single service for all the games to be palatable for the consumer. I think that could work, especially if ALL multi-player games have an online option, but otherwise it's not going to happen.
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#3 of 18 Dave George

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Posted October 30 2001 - 05:08 AM

Joe,

You make some interesting points, especially concerning the production of two versions of games, one for kids and one for adults. I'm not sure if it would be worthwhile for the producers and retailers to make/carry two versions of a game, but it's an idea worth looking into, IMO.

As for paying extra for online play, I totally agree with you. I /might/ consider paying $10 a month to play all games for a certain system online, but with three systems and tons of games, $10/month for any single game just isn't going to happen.

In terms of all three systems surviving, your guess is as good as mine. It's never really happened before, but the market has certainly expanded of late and maybe there is space for all three. I'm not sure about the Gamecube or Xbox, but I personally don't see the Playstation going anywhere. I think Sony is peaking at just the right time. To be honest, up until now I haven't been all that excited about my PS2. I bought it back in May, and had a tough time finding any games I wanted. GT3 helped a bit, but I still spent most of my time playing FF Anthology, pissed that I spent $300 on a system to play a PS1 game that was really a snes game Posted Image. But now, with MGS2, DMC, THPS3, NFL2k2, GTA3, and Tekken Tag (finally broke down and ordered it) on order, plus ICO, Silent Hill 2, etc. coming out recently, I don't have much money (or desire) left over for Nintendo or MS Posted Image

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#4 of 18 John Berggren

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Posted October 30 2001 - 05:22 AM

Nintendo has a sizeable warchest to keep producing consoles and games. And Nintendo's aim is to sell their software - something they are VERY successful at doing. I don't see any problems ahead for them regardless of how the other consoles perform.

They may not be #1, but they'll always be there.

X-box is Dark Horse. They have to prove themselves, no matter how excited people get about their offerings, they are the only one of the three that does not have a proven track record for performance. Also, their games would make an easy port to PC... (or other consoles for that matter).




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#5 of 18 Kelley_B

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Posted October 30 2001 - 06:28 AM

Nintendo not only has a warchest, but no debt what so ever. Last time I heard their warchest was almost 5 Billion........just think at how many GameCube that will buy Posted Image

#6 of 18 Jeff Kleist

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Posted October 30 2001 - 06:44 AM

Nintendo will not drope console hardware as long as Yamaguchi is alive. I'm willing to bet that within 5 years of his death, they will though. They have always been a software company, and their consoles are consistently the underdog, with very little (but excellent) software.

Meanwhile, no one in Japan is buying Nintendo systems, and I'm very shakey on whether they'll buy X-Box (US systems traditionally totally bomb in Japan)

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#7 of 18 Dean Cooper

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Posted October 30 2001 - 06:49 AM

First off, welcome to the forum Joe. Posted Image

Here’s my take on this topic, I'll try to keep it brief. Posted Image

Nintendo should do well with the Game Cube, but I don't think they have what it takes to take back the market dominance Nintendo once had. I totally agree with you about the handheld market, and I don't think any company is going to plan on trying to knock that from them any time soon. The two of the biggest advantages that Nintendo has with its Cube is that its mainly targeted at a younger market that is almost untapped by the other consoles and its cheaper price point. I think that the Game Cube will sell a lot like the N64 did, not on top but not really failing to leave the shelves either.

SONY has already made the PS2 a success. If all PS2 console sales stopped tomorrow its 20 million-user base would be quite capable of making SONY money for a long time to come. SONY has got a great strategy right now. Its pushing really hard to have as many killer apps released by any of the first, second or third parities to put a dent in the buzz of the new systems. I think that the PS2 will stay a top contender for a while because of its really strong head start in userbase. SONY is going to work really hard to keep the killer exclusives on its system, that is the only way that the PS2 will stay on top ( which personally I don't see happening )

Microsoft in my opinion has a winner with its Xbox. I think part of the reason why there are so many "MS haters" out there is because MS is very aggressive when they decide to go after a market. They know how to play aggressive and have no problems standing toe to toe with an equally aggressive company ( SONY ). The Xbox is not going to take over right away, but because of its hardware and development advantages it will eventually take the top. The biggest advantage that the Xbox has is its hardware capabilities. Games that get ported to the system should always look better on the Xbox. Silent Hill 2 is a great example of this. If both were available now and you had both systems to play it on, which version would you buy? Its like comparing a VHS tape and a DVD of the same movie.

In summary I think that the market is indeed capable of sustaining 3 systems and in about 2 years or so the Xbox will be the new king of the console gaming world. Who in the end is going to win? The gamers! Posted Image

Dean

[Edited last by Dean Cooper on October 30, 2001 at 01:57 PM]

#8 of 18 Morgan Jolley

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Posted October 30 2001 - 07:03 AM

I haven't read any other posts in this thread, so I may accidentally repeat what someone else said.

The industry can support 3.

Nintendo and Sony already won. Mainly because of the PS2's head start (and Final Fantasy X) and GameBoy Advance. MS is running on just the XB, so if it fails, they will either pull out of the gaming market or have to try again. Nintendo didn't win in Japan with the GCN, but no real 'big' games are out yet. Once Super Smash Brothers is out (as well as the Zelda and Mario games) Nintendo will have reestablished its Japanese base. X-Box will do well because of its power, but probably not for its games. If you want an XB, chances are you want the power and the capabilities and are hoping for good games beyond the ones announced. GCN has Nintendo and PS2 has a lot of dedicated third party developers, so good games for both is a given. The XB is the wildcard for future good games (at least moreso than the PS2 or GCN).

Overall, PS2 wins this round. By next year, I assume GCN because its a Nintendo product. They will all live.

#9 of 18 Carlo Medina

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Posted October 30 2001 - 07:27 AM

Because of the attacks and the souring economy (no, this is not a Chicken Little-style prediction, the economy is slowing and that's a fact), the beginning will be rocky for one of these systems. My guess is the higher priced one. So that would be XBox at $300. I think if Nintendo can follow through on their $199 deal they'll be okay. I know that as of 1 year ago, I totally thought I would get both XBox and GameCube. Now it looks like Cube only, and that might even be a delayed post-XMas purchase.

#10 of 18 Michael St. Clair

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Posted October 30 2001 - 07:32 AM

The success of the PS2 shows that $300 can be a good starting price if the perceived value is there.

The GameCube will probably be the last non-portable console ever released by Nintendo. However, the real winner for them is the GBA; they are selling 4 GBAs today for every GameCube they sell in Japan. Within a year no PS2 title will approach the sales figures of the hottest GBA titles.

But on the 'regular' console front, I expect Nintendo will do OK, but Yamauchi will retire before long and they will stop making non-portable hardware, and will stick to software for the other consoles and make even more money.

I think within the first year that XBox will outsell GameCube in the US, but Japan is hard to say. There is a good chance that neither will do very well in Japan.

If XBox really takes off, you may see PS3 only 3 or 4 years after the launch of the PS2.

[Edited last by Michael St. Clair on October 30, 2001 at 02:33 PM]

#11 of 18 Calvin Watts III

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Posted October 30 2001 - 11:40 AM

Keeping it short...

Yes,the industry can,and I believe will, support 3 systems.

The front-leader? Its too close to call.

Why? Because all three systems have something different to offer everyone.

I think that regardless of what happens, Nintendo & Sony will be okay. Microsoft,on the other hand,has the biggest chance to fail,being the newbie......or the best chance to succeed,what with all the stuff they have put into the system.

Hmm..this gives me an idea...look for a new,and hopefully interesting topic!

Regardless,we the gamers,like Dean said,will be the winners.

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#12 of 18 Morgan Jolley

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Posted October 30 2001 - 01:28 PM

I think that the PS2 will win solely because of its second generation titles like Metal Gear Solid 2, Soul Reaver 2, Blood Omen 2, Final Fantasy X, etc. and the one year start. If you erase everything on the PS2 before November, I think the PS2 will win in software sales and Nintendo will win in hardware sales, simply because of its price and being a Nintendo product (plus some pretty good games by Christmas).

I think the XB will lose. Around this time next year, it will be a better contender, but Nintendo will have won by then because of its stellar first and second party titles.

I don't think the GCN is Nintendo's last console. I could see them doing more, they will just have to plan out the launch more. The one and only thing hindering the launch of the GCN is the lack of games (especially true Mario ones).

#13 of 18 Camp

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Posted October 30 2001 - 01:44 PM

The best technology guarantees nothing.

The vast majority of console buyers don't care about (or even care to understand) the technical differences between these three consoles. The fact is these systems are all so close in terms of visible and audible output that technical differences will only matter to the 5% of consumers nerdy enough to post on forums like these.

"Wait a minute", you say. "Only Xbox does DD and has far more graphical power than the others."

Yea, and that matters a lot to you and me. However the people who determine which console succeeds and which follow the Dreamcast into extinction don't have a 5.1 set-up and care far more about having their buds over for some beer and a game of Madden than they do about trilinear mip mapping.

"5.1 surround systems are selling like hotcakes and even my moron brother-in-law bought one."

Yea, sales are growing but the penetration is not nearly fast enough to make the Xbox's DD capability a major selling factor. In the next generation of consoles it will matter, for now it's just for us geeks.

"But (place game system here) is faster and produces far better visuals than the others -anyone can see that benefit."

Bullshit. At some level everyone here knows it. It's just a matter of whether or not we can drop our fanboy mindset and be big enough to admit all three give good graphics.

"You're not giving the average consumer enought credit. They have been exposed to PC and console gaming long enough to recognize good technology and graphical differences."

Again I say, bullshit! I've been selling video game systems to "the average consumer" for over 10 years. I don't mean to sound jaded but they don't really care which is best. You want to know what they do care about?

Deep down, we geeks care for the same thing as the average video game consumer. They want to be taken away. They want to feel part of a fantasy world. They want to really believe they've escaped from the boss, the bills, the wife. They want to take control of a world that conforms to specific rules -and one that lets them break recognized societal rules. They don't get pulled over for "failing to come to a complete stop at a stop sign" -damn-it! They take a shortcut through the White House lawn at 150MPH!!!

The average consumer, just like us, will establish a deep personal relationship with the console maker who can give them that escape. That leads to product loyalty which leads to massive sales (and fanboys).

That is how you win this 3 horse race. It's as simple and as difficult as bringing gaming perfection to the masses. The technology is a tool...the software is the killer app.



#14 of 18 Adam Nixon

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Posted October 30 2001 - 02:28 PM

Bravo, Camp -- that may just be the most rational post I've seen on this topic in a LONG time.

[Edited last by Adam Nixon on October 31, 2001 at 01:40 AM]

#15 of 18 Calvin Watts III

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Posted October 30 2001 - 03:11 PM

Adam, I second that.... Posted Image

Camp,you hit the nail right on the head with the proverbial hammer!

Calvin

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[Edited last by Calvin Watts III on October 30, 2001 at 10:13 PM]

#16 of 18 Dean Cooper

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Posted October 30 2001 - 04:17 PM

But Camp you didn't say if the market can sustain three consoles or not Posted Image

I see your point, but I think your under estimating how fast the common J6P is "getting with the times". Price is what splits the geeks from the J6Ps and DVD / DD / HD equipment is starting to get in to their market range. ( Walmart screwing with our OAR lives is proof of that ) 2002 is sure going to be an interesting year for gamers and Home theater enthusiasts.

Dean




#17 of 18 Morgan Jolley

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Posted October 31 2001 - 06:57 AM

To add to what Camp said, in the hands of the right developers, a game can look better on PS2 than many games on GCN and XB. Its not just polygons and textures, its the artistry and how its executed.

I fully agree with Camp. Since one can't win with power, the next step is to look at the games. From what I see, Sony delivered, Nintendo always does, and MS is still a wait and see.

Sorry if I screwed up the good moment, but I'm just being truthful.

#18 of 18 Joe Rigali

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Posted November 01 2001 - 01:35 AM

Actually I dont think you screwed up any "moment", but you are absolutley right - it all depends on the programmers. There are some games out there that look like psx games, and then you see something like Devil May Cry or MGS2 and your jaw drops!

Its all about the games.