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The Outlook For 2015, and Taking Stock of 2014


On 01/13/2015 at 01:38 PM by gigantor21

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Well...it's been a while, LOL.

Things have been pretty crazy at home, and my job situation has been terrible. Things are finally starting to look up, though, so I can get back into the swing of things (more or less). I hope to get back into my usual pattern of blogging again.

-----

2014 was fucking awful as far as gaming was concerned.

If it was just the overhyped titles that underdelivered, that would be one thing. Few generations have good first years software-wise, and I didn't expect any different from this one. Nor were the broken, buggy releases the worst part--we shouldn't be surprised after seeing years of "sell now, patch later" tactics. That it was extra bad this time will only be a temporary deterrent IMO.

No, it was all that stuff combined with Gamergate that made this year the worst in gaming I can remember. Seeing people hacked, doxxed, and harrassed for simply daring to speak out about it, and even forced out of their homes due to murder/rape threats over videogames--FUCKING VIDEOGAMES--was complete horseshit. I've long believed that there's nothing wrong with enjoying videogames at any age; the Gamergate shit really, REALLY tested that view, to put it mildly. My hope is that seeing that toxicity burst out into the open after festering for years will be the first step in really dealing with it.

So, with that depressing stuff out of the way, I'd like to just take a look at where we're heading through the rest of 2015. We'll go platform by platform:

The 3DS - Nintendo is holding a Nintendo Direct tomorrow: I'm 5000% sure we'll hear the release date for the New 3DS in the States, and that it'll be out in February. If the prices are the same as the old ones, I'm going to get one, along with Smash 3DS--the specs are better, the 3D works better, and they finally put the second analog stick that should've been there from the off. I don't expect it to do any more to stop the 3DS's sales declines here than it did in Japan, though.

Games I'm Watching: Xenoblade Chronicles 3DS, Majora's Mask 3D, Monster Hunter 4, Yokai Watch (maybe?)

The Vita - It's dead outside of Japan, it's been dead outside of Japan for years, and it's going to stay dead outside Japan. I sold mine several months ago; I had fun with the stuff I did play, but it simply isn't getting the support I hoped for when I bought it. With Japan doing more on PC and indie titles being everywhere, the niche it's carved out for itself isn't cutting it anymore IMO.

Games I'm Watching: None

The WiiU - 2014 saw sales for the WiiU stay flat or drop (depending on the region) compared to 2013, despite a VASTLY superior line-up of games. Of all the well recieved, well reviewed games the system has gotten in it's 2 years of life, only MK8 made a major, lasting impact. Nor is Nintendo being anywhere near as agressive on pricing as they were with the Gamecube back in the day. I don't see it turning around this year, and wouldn't be surprised to see their next system announced in 2016.

Games I'm Watching: Yarn Yoshi, Zelda U, Kirby Klaymation Knitting

The Xbox One - MS did a metric fuckton of work to repair the system's image and get people to buy one this year. Last January, there was literally no reason to buy one; this holiday season in the States saw it beat the PS4 in November due to aggressive marketing and pricing. But this month, as the price went back up, it's starting to fall back into it's pre-holiday pattern. I'm still not convinced that Microsoft proved the Xone is as good a value as a PS4, and burning money on crazy discounted 2-3 game bundles every year doesn't sound like a solid strategy. They're facing MUCH tougher competition from Sony this year, so we'll see how they react to it.

Games I'm Watching: Halo 5, Rise of the Tomb Raider

The PS4 - The undisputed global champ, selling nearly as much as the other two consoles combined. It made up for having a really weak lineup of exclusives and no cheap bundles by establishing itself as the "default console choice" for people who aren't deeply invested in exclusives, and leaning on Sony's huge advantage outside of the US and UK. It's Sony's generation to lose right now, and they can extend their lead even further if their exclusives live up to the hype and they put in a price cut before Christmas.

Games I'm Watching: Uncharted 4, Bloodborne

PC - We saw several Japanese devs (Konami, Koei Temco, Square, SNK Playmore) make a bigger push into the PC market last year, and the release of Nvidia's 900 series of graphics cards has shaken up the GPU market considerably--both of which I couldn't be happier about. I'm currently looking to upgrade my own GPU, but on my retail clerk budget I'm not in position to spend more than $200-250 max right now. If the upcoming GTX 960 doesn't turn out well I'll probably just wait and get the 970 over the summer.

Games I'm Watching: GTAV, The Witcher 3, Arkham Knight

What are you looking forward to most in 2015--and what are you most happy to leave behind in 2014? Let me know in the comments.


 

Comments

Matt Snee Staff Writer

01/13/2015 at 02:07 PM

I'm really looking forward to Batman, GTAV, The Witcher 3, Star Citizen, and Cradle, among other games.  I'm going mostly PC...  probably won't get a PS4 for a while, and I'm hoping Final Fantasy Type -0 comes to PC eventually like a lot of square's games nowadays.  

Good to hear from you.  Hope you are well!

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 06:29 PM

Thanks! :)

Yeah, I'm likely not going to be getting a new console until late next year, if at all. I'll definitely be getting a New 3DS, but the rest of my gaming money will likely go towards long-overdue upgrades to my computer, as well as real life expenses. 

Super Step Contributing Writer

01/13/2015 at 02:20 PM

I'm looking forward to likely buying an XBOX ONE in 2015, though I was diametrically opposed to the idea last year around E3. The controller and its exclusives are why. Even moreso the controller to be honest. PS4's controller just did NOT feel comfortable for me when I played it at GameStop. 

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 06:32 PM

It's pretty amazing to consider how much better off the Xone's image is compared to last holiday season.

I was right alongside everyone else condemning MS's original vision, and largely wrote the thing off upon launch despite it having Killer Instinct, which was the most enticing next-gen exclusive on any of the three new consoles for me in the first few months. Now, I feel that it's not only just as worthy a purchase as the PS4, but when they were doing all the crazy deals for it it was a much better value IMO. It'll be interesting to see if Sony gets more aggressive about pricing next time around--they're already including TLOU for free in a new bundle announced today, which is bound to eat into the gains the Xbox One AC bundle made. 

SanAndreas

01/13/2015 at 02:57 PM

I received the PlayStation TV as a Christmas present, and that's a good, if flawed, introduction to the world of Vita for me. I got Tales of Hearts R and Persona 4 Golden for it, got a few downloadable PSP games working on it (including a few that aren't "officially" supported). I like it, and there are a few games upcoming I want for it, but I'm realistic about what kind of support it gets. It was a cheap little microconsole anyway, so I've gotten my wife's money's worth out of it. :)

Wii U was great, and a good chunk of my most anticipated of '15 are Wii U games. 3DS has slowed somewhat, but I do want Codename: S.T.E.A.M, which looks like a Nintendo take on Valkyria Chronicles.

PS4 looks really good in 15. Both the PS4 and the Xbone were kind of mediocre in 2014, but things look better from here on out.

PC.... ehhh. Since I'm a laptop-only PC user and am not really interested in buying a tower, the only PC gaming I do is emulated stuff. I've bought a few Steam games but very rarely play on Steam.

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 06:37 PM

I want to a PSTV, but I've heard there are some compatibility issues that still haven't been addressed with some games and I'd need to buy one of the exorbitantly priced memory cards to hold all my PS1, PSP and Vita games. Either that, or have to constantly delete and redownload things the way I did on my Vita. Really don't know if it's worth the money... *sigh*

As far as the new consoles, I was willing to give Sony and MS more of a pass because it was only the first year. Now is the time when they'll REALLY have to prove the worth of these new boxes--no one has the excuse of their being unknown quantities anymore. I'm expecting to see some magic happen from this point on.

And yeah, it's tough justifying the expense of getting more into PC gaming if you mainly use a laptop. I got a PC for my birthday a few years back that I've been able to upgrade over time--and I've spent more on upgrades than the computer itself already. :p 

SanAndreas

01/14/2015 at 12:13 PM

When my wife got me mine, she got me the bundle with the Lego Movie video game included as a digital DL that also came with an 8GB memory card, which went for $100. She also got me Tales of Hearts R (physical version), which was my "trigger game" for asking for this for Christmas. It came with a Dualshock 3, but will work with a Dualshock 4 as well, and in some games the DS4's touchpad can emulate the touchpad on the back of the Vita.  There was a "plain vanilla" version going for 80 bucks new as well, and the console is the size of a pack of Bicycle cards. PSP games run really good on it.  As far as compatibility issues, some of its issues are due to the use of the gyroscopes and touchpad in the Vita, I guess, and a few of the Vita's better-known games like Gravity Rush and Uncharted: Golden Abyss aren't supported. The former would be kind of cool, I don't give a damn about the latter. Most of the newer games from Japan do support the PSTV, like Freedom Wars, ToHR, as well as Persona 4 Golden. The one game I would like to see patched for the PSTV that isn't compatible is Ys: Memories of Celceta.

Nicoleb1989

01/13/2015 at 03:41 PM

I'm excited for 2015 for multiple game releases Story of Seasons, The Order, Witcher 3, HyperDimension Neptunia Re Birth 2, Zelda U, Yarn Yoshi, Majora's Mask, Mortal Kombat X, Bloodbourne, Uncharted 4, and more, much more. Gamergate was just utterly stupid in my opinion. I found it a waste really. I didn't get involved and will continue to do so this year. Good to hear from you!

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 06:37 PM

Thanks! :)

What are you gonna be playing on this year? Looking to get any new consoles/handhelds? Just curious.

Nicoleb1989

01/13/2015 at 07:35 PM

Honestly I think I'm good on console/handheld other then hopefully maybe getting a good PC tower built. I guess I could buy an Xbone for the exclusives I do want but they only really current one out I'd play is Sunset Overdrive and there is it seems rumors running rampant that the sequel will not be exclusive to xbone. It's just a rumor of course, so I might wait and see how it unfolds more or until more exclusive release like Gears of War and an actual Fable main game in the Heroline. 

Right now I'm playing mostly RPGS. I'm playing Persona 4 on Vita and about to continue Dragon Age Inquisition on PS4. I'm also playing Fantasy Life and Pokémon AS on 3DS. However I'm very excited to play The Order and Dying Light during February along with the next HyperDimension Neptunia game on vita. I'm severally excited however for Zelda U and am hopeing they stick to a 2015 release. It's probably a winter release so they can push Wii U sales around Christmas. I'm also excited for Majora's Mask on 3DS. I think this year will be so much better for gaming!

KnightDriver

01/13/2015 at 04:13 PM

I'm looking forward to The Order 1866 in February and Codename: S.T.E.A.M. and Etrian Mystery Dungeon in March for 3DS. I try not to look farther than a month or two and Crackdown 3 got moved to 2016, so that's not a thing this year.

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 06:38 PM

I know that feel. Street Fighter V is far and away the most exciting next-gen game I've seen to date, and it's not coming out until next March if the rumors are believed.

I WANT IT NOW D: 

Alex-C25

01/13/2015 at 06:02 PM

Really a long time since you've been here. Nice to see you again. 

I've got a lot to say here and sorry if some of it sounds blunt:

I would say that while 2014 may have been a dissapointing year, I think most of it comes from the AAA catalogue. As far as I know, Nintendo, the indie market and PC did very nice this year. Besides, I think gaming has had some years like this before, so what happened here shouldn't ruin the potential for anything good nor ruin the good games that came out.

Oh boy, GamerGate, that very touchy subject even here on this site. Since you didn't seem to give a clue if you support it or not, i'm just going to say I support some of the end goals and the good people like Christina Sommers and The Fine Young Capitalists, but i'd rather keep a low profile on it like Totalbiscuit.

"Sigh" sorry but I'm seriously tired of that "Nintendo is doomed" attitude that reminds of Polygon in a bad way. I Know charts aren't always correct, but looking at VGChartz and seeing the 3DS behind the PS4 in terms of sales, but above the other consoles doesn't scream to me like they are loosing sales. Maybe it doesn't compare to the original DS for all I know, but that would be like comparing a succesful animated film to Frozen by stating to be a failure despite the fact that Frozen IS the top grossing animated film so far and getting to that would be hard to replicate.

Also, Nintendo finally got its footing with the Wii U and even had it briefely surpass the Xbone in the middle of this year (thanks largelly to Mario Kart 8). Right now, it may not be top, but finally the games are coming and even without the console being a top seller, a dedicated fanbase and sales around summer and christmas can help them, and let me also tell you that the are more exclusives on the Wii U I want to play than in the big boys. In fact, i'm ready.

Again, sorry for my passionate comments over here. Now, on a lighter note of the games i'm excited the most, I look forward to Zelda Wii U, Majora's Mask 3D, the new Star Fox, The Witcher 3 and most of all, No Man's Sky.

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 06:28 PM

If anything, I'd probably end up getting a WiiU before the other two consoles. The PS4 and Xone have so much overlap with PC in terms of games I want (and already have, in fact), while the WiiU is it's own beast--and cheaper to boot. Of the three new consoles, it would compliment my Steam collection the best.

And no, I have absolutely zero support for Gamergate whatsoever. I've never taken the movement seriously, and they do not speak for me as a gamer at all regardless of their claims to the contrary. If not for all the insanity surrounding it last year I would've just considered 2014 "meh" at worst--I didn't have very high expectations for the year to begin with. 

Cary Woodham

01/13/2015 at 08:48 PM

I wouldn't say that 2014 was the worst, but then, I didn't pay attention to that GamerGate stuff at all so I didn't have that weighing me down.  I hate it that the Xbox One and PS4 didn't have anything interesting to me last year, but the Wii U and 3DS sure were good to me.  I recently wrote blogs about my favorite games of 2014, and what games I'm looking forward to in 2015.  If you get the chance, it would be super fantastic if you hopped on over to my page and read those.  I'd appreciate it greatly and your input is always valued!

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 09:59 PM

Will do. Thanks. :)

Nick DiMola Director

01/13/2015 at 09:56 PM

I finally picked up a PC capable of gaming and between my enormous Steam library, my Wii U and my 3DS, I've got plenty to keep me busy. Bloodborne is about the only game that has my attention right now that I can't get on one of those platforms and that's certainly not enough to get me to drop the cash for a PS4.

2014 was a pretty bland year for gaming, but there were still quite I few games I really enjoyed, primarily Nintendo's offerings, Dark Souls 2, and the Danganronpa games. I'm looking forward to everything Nintendo has slated for 2015 and the upgraded version of Dark Souls 2, but at the moment that's about it.

Haven't really been following much gaming stuff as of late because I'm just kind of fed up with the whole industry. While I'm not really on the up and up with what's slated for next year, I expect I'll be playing a healthy helping of indie games on my PC throughout the year.

gigantor21

01/13/2015 at 10:01 PM

Hearing about the enhanced DS2 re-release made me glad I didn't jump on it right away. Would rather just spend money on one version. I'm honestly more interested in Bloodborne, though, although I doubt I'll be getting a PS4 anytime soon.

I'm 100% going to get a New 3DS soon, though. I might even put down a deposit on one--something I never done for a console or handheld before. Having Smash on the go is too tempting to pass up. Not sure if I'll get the regular one or the XL, though... 

NSonic79

01/26/2015 at 02:04 PM

Last console generation Microsoft lost out over the rush to get the Xbox 360 out, thus resulting in the dreaded RRoD issue.

Will the "constant-on" issue and price point for MS cause the xbox One to stumble yet again in this new console gaming generation? a buggy master chief collection didn't help matters either.

though I found gamergate to be HILARIOUS in the beginning it just got so far out of hand and got it's hooks into so many iissues into gaming itself it just no longer became funny and make me think less of gaming in general. Still debating if I'm to go full retro or simply F2P now.

2015 better look better after all the hassle we got last year.

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