Without Kojima, do I really even want a PS4? Do I even want to play console games?

Posted: April 28, 2015 by ryanlecocq in Off-topic

This may seem to echo the statements of a lot of people who are threatening to burn their Playstations or Konami games, to lash back at the company for letting Hideo Kojima slip through their fingers.  I actually mean it seriously and without emotion.  The reasons I bought a current-gen console at all were Bloodborne, P.T. and Final Fantasy XV.  If not for those games, I would just continue to play on the PC platform, which has all the other games at higher resolutions and framerates.  I already have Bloodborne and I was honestly disappointed.  The community has devolved into exploiters and trolls and has lost all honor and hardcore appeal.  The FFXV demo actually has me pretty sold, but now that P.T. is cancelled, if FFXV was announced for PC, I no longer have any reason to own a gaming console.  That is a pretty sad state of an industry where I used to end up buying all major consoles eventually, so I could play all the exclusives.  At this point I would rather buy old consoles to play the no longer supported back catalog than I would play the best the companies currently have to offer on consoles.  They just don’t impress compared to what is available on even my now aging laptop.  Why wait months for indie titles like Shovel Knight when I could buy them day 1, drm free on Good Old Games?  Why pay the same price to run a game like Dragon Age Inquisition at pathetic framerates and settings, when a computer worth less than a PS4 could do better?  These are the reasons that it is worth Konami’s money to pay whatever an industry celebrity like Kojima requires to keep him happy, just so that he will keep them in business.

Because let’s think about it; what can big budget studios honestly do anymore that we can’t get from independents?  The answer is not a whole damn lot besides big budget projects with celebrity developers at the helm.  What made Squaresoft a great company in the late 90s wasn’t that they were actually a great company.  It was that they could afford to keep Hironobu Sakaguchi, Yoshinori Kitase, Yoshitaka Amano and a dozen other people who now went their separate ways, all working under one roof together.  The more of those people leave the company, the farther down they spiral.  The only way we get these truly amazing games that we remember for years, is to throw huge piles of money at very talented people and letting them go nuts.  If you have been paying attention to the industry, you probably realize that Kojima was one of the last of these big shots that was still employed at the company where he became famous.  You can go down the list:  Sakaguchi, Inafune, Rubin, Carmack, Miyamoto, Mikami, Specter, on and on.  All of these big name developers have gone independent, retired, stepped back from directing etc. because they felt they were being limited from making the games they wanted to in their previous position.  What do we have in their place?  Pretty much every franchise they created being run into the ground by corporate clowns, hiring whoever is cheapest that week to do the next sequel.

So where does that leave the console gaming industry?  Not getting my money.  Console gaming has for years been most popular with 20-30 somethings.  That isn’t likely to change any time soon and those people all have computers already.  Beyond that our phones, tablets, televisions and more can now play more and more games and services.  The only thing that is going to justify another box in my house is it doing something the others won’t.  Since Netflix, Skype, Twitch and the like are all vastly superior on PC, adding those features definitely isn’t it.  If the industry keeps losing the talent that make these must-have exclusive games, I can’t honestly think of a reason that I need a video game console.  Since Japanese developers especially are nowhere near ready to compete in the PC gaming space, losing more and more consumers like myself is going to hurt companies like Konami, which pretty much exist solely for the Metal Gear and Silent Hill franchises (oh and DDR).

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