Reasons to skip PS4, Xbox One launches

Shiny consoles don't necessarily mean better games

Shiny consoles don't necessarily mean better games

Daniel Anderson, ClickOnline.com

, Last Updated: 4:48 PM ET

As you are probably aware, there are some new consoles on the way very soon. Both the PS4 and the Xbox One will be launching in most territories (sorry Japan) by the end of November and everyone is super excited.

And they have good reason to be, it has been a massive eight years since the Xbox 360 debuted, and a full seven since the PS3 made its bow. The world has changed, gaming has become more connected and social (in more unique ways) than ever before. Then there's the hardware to consider, the possibilities of what faster specs can bring to new games and new interactive experiences.

There's also the undoubted allure of the new and shiny, of being one of the first batch of people to explore an entirely new machine, to experience first hand the nascent steps on what should be another six or seven year journey.

But what of those left behind? Those who can't afford to spend over a grand on two new systems, that's before you even consider the cost of peripherals and the subscription services which are a necessary part of the new generation. And you'll also probably need games at some stage too.

I'm here to tell you that all is not lost, if you're tied to an older system for monetary reasons or a fondness for the chunky lines of your phat PS3, there's no reason to despair just yet.

The console clock has turned many times before, and - as was the case with the original Xbox and PS2, support will continue for several years beyond the introduction of the next gen. Hell, there are still games being developed and released for the Dreamcast today - a full 12 years after it was unceremoniously discontinued.

On the cusp of the new generation, the biggest titles are set for release across all the major platforms. This system clash has led us to the unusual situation where Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag is one of the most anticipated next gen releases, partly due to the delay of Watch Dogs. And you can buy an almost identical version right now for your current gen hardware.

The same applies to some of the biggest titles of the year - including Call of Duty: Ghosts and FIFA 14. It's very difficult for a developer to bring new features to cross platform releases so those who can't be early adopters are unlikely to miss out on anything game changing.

And the future looks bright too. While games like Killzone: Shadowfall and Dead Rising 3 are next gen exclusives, the pickings elsewhere are anything but slim. There's gargantuan tussling Mechs in Titanfall (Xbox 360, PC), epic first person shooting with Destiny (Xbox 360, PS3) and more nutty action from Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain (PS3, Xbox 360).

Ubisoft's Watch Dogs will also finally land sometime in 2014 and will be available to all and even big budget relaunches like the return of Thief will debut on both generations of consoles. Wolfenstein: The New Order, Dying Light, Dragon Age: Inquisition… the list goes ever on and on. And don't forget the Indie world, with Hotline Miami 2 on the way next year.

As an aside, there's always PC gaming. Most of the major cross generation games will also be hitting the beige box - usually with superior graphics. The PC has also been where Indie titles have really gained their foothold, bringing a vast array of gaming genres and new experiences to the public through the likes of services like Steam and GOG.com.

With two massive console launches coming up in the same month, it's easy to get caught up on the global fervour that comes with any major commercial launch. And for dedicated gamers, or those with an eye on a particular console exclusive, it's set to be a joyous occasion - with the unboxing of a new machine a genuinely memorable experience.

But for those who came late to the current generation party, or others with no fanatical need for Ryse or Knack, it's worth taking a step back for a while, giving these new systems time to find their feet and waiting for that killer app which makes the purchase timely and worthwhile. Right now might be the perfect time to take a look back at the generation that was, to revisit the genuinely innovative titles which heralded the first truly high definition age of home gaming. There are some terrific titles just waiting to be given new life in your PS3 and Xbox 360, and you can find a list of some our essential games of the last gen right here.

Because, when you get right down to it, regardless of how fast the processor is or how well the motion controls work, it's really all about finding your next truly great game.

The PlayStation 4 arrives in North America Nov. 15. The Xbox One launches across most of the world on Nov. 22.


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