In the Future, are Videogame Consoles Dead?

The Appetizer

Bioware, one of the most successful and respected game development companies in the world has been known for its great storytelling and understanding of technology trends.  So it was rather newsworthy when the founder of Bioware, Greg Zeschuk, stated that, “the future isn’t necessarily on console… That’s the past.”  The article cites another successful game creator who made similar comments, stating that, “gamers should be able to take that experience [gaming] with them…wherever they are and whenever they want to play…”

The Main Course

The Dessert

It is newsworthy, but it is not groundbreaking.  Newsworthy because hearing someone such as Dr. Zeschuk make that statement about the game industry is similar to hearing a major music executive 12 years ago openly admit that digital downloading was the way of the future for music purchases.  Bioware has been playing with the concept of being console free through the various test/games they have conducted in the last two years through the creation of  flash and html 5-based game series.  The insinuation is simple: games will not be restricted to a particular console in the future.  That insight does two things: it gives the developer an extreme amount of power, and it makes platforms and outlets such as Sony, Micorsoft, and Gamestop nervous– and if it does not, then it should.  It shows why it is so important for companies such as the three mentioned needed to develop game networks like PSN and Xbox Live- because there will be a time in the near future when people will not care to be restricted to buying a piece of hardware in order to play a game.  Instead, they will want a particular game when they want and wherever they are, ultimately enabling game developers to potentially sell and host their own games without the need of a major game console maker.  However, that does take money for marketing and managing such a project.  It is also why it is important for the current console makers to have their own game studios.  With companies such as Apple and Google taking steps into the gaming market, as well as platforms such as HTML5 which requires NO console or special plug-in, only a regular computer and internet connection, it is not surprising why Dr. Zeschuk would have the opinion that he does.  The question is if he is right or will brand loyalty reign?

The Overall Meal

3 Stars!

The Doggybag

Do you think that there will be no such thing as videogame consoles in the future?  Why or why not?

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