Next-Gen Consoles Aren’t Worth Their Price

I’ve seen the current state of next-gen. I’ve seen it running on all three platforms – Wii U, PlayStation 4, and now Xbox One. I’ve held the controllers in my hands. I’ve played the games. And you know what? I’m not yet convinced that next generation is worth a $400-500 upgrade (or $300, in the case of Wii U).

I just know I’m going to get crucified for that statement, but it’s true. I toured both Microsoft and Sony’s booths at E3 this year, and had I not known that the games they were showing off were designed for next-gen consoles, you probably could have fooled me into thinking they could belong on current ones.

As such, I think next-gen consoles are going to have a serious challenge: proving to the average consumer that they’re worth their high cost.

Really high prices for game consoles aren’t exactly a new phenomenon. The Commodore 64 was $599.99 when it debuted in 1982; Neo Geo launched at $399.99 back in 1991; 3DO was a whopping $699.99 back in 1993; Sega Saturn launched at $399.99 a year later. And I think everyone remembers PlayStation 3′s $599 USD moment from E3 2006. There are a few other examples, but most of them have been forgotten and lost to history.

But here’s the thing: no game console has ever been a true success at those high prices. Neo Geo, 3DO, and Sega Saturn were all more or less irrelevant for the industry during their respective periods, and it was only once the PS3 and Xbox 360 prices dropped that those platforms started to see serious momentum.

Apart from these blips, virtually every relevant game console has started off at a price point of $299.99 or less. And that’s in spite of some pretty impressive advances. The jump to HD was pricey, but it was still definitely a jump to HD. The jump to the next generation of consoles doesn’t really have that. Heck, from my experiences at E3 it doesn’t even really feel like a jump at all.

If that’s the case, why should I care enough to pay $400 or more?

This is a dilemma I already discussed with respect to Wii U. Even considering the rather distinctive leap from SD to HD for Nintendo’s first-party franchises, I don’t think Nintendo fans see HD or even the GamePad as adding enough value to justify paying $100 more than they did last generation for the new console. Wii U is too expensive for what it is: a machine people use to play video games.

Any additional “value” is just cursory: players may not care about the features, and might prefer that they didn’t even exist. For many consumers, these features represent a costly hurdle, not a selling point. After all, the “value” of “a box that plays video games” doesn’t change dramatically just because of production values, online connectivity (which has separate associated costs), or the stuff crammed in the box.

In the past, generational leaps meant bold new possibilities for gaming. They meant the birth of new genres like 3D platformers, online RPGs, and first-person shooters. They meant the delivery of more colorful and less blocky visuals. They meant the way game worlds were constructed would dramatically change. And with the odd exception of last-gen these leaps always came with a reasonable price tag of $299.99 or less.

But last generation was about HD, which was such a dramatic difference cost-wise in terms of both software and hardware that higher costs were somewhat expected and definitely understood. This generation, I don’t sense anything worth writing home about. I see more of the same – and that goes for all three next-gen platforms. Is that really worth another $400+ upgrade, particularly in light of dramatically different economic circumstances for the average consumer?

Personally, I’m not so sure. If I weren’t the editor-in-chief of an up-and-coming gaming blog, I don’t think I’d be thinking so hard about buying even a PS4. I might not have even gone for Wii U at launch. I noted just after E3 that I don’t think Nintendo’s lineup carries enough next-gen oomph to push lots of people to buy a $350 console, but that goes double for Sony and Microsoft. At least Nintendo fans haven’t gotten much new content on home consoles in almost two years; PS3 and Xbox 360 still have tons of great content coming out, and the launch lineups of Xbox One and PS4 are largely made up of cross-gen titles. They’re going to face a number of the same issues that Wii U has.

The terrifying thing is that this generation marks the decline of the $300-or-less gaming box. Now, at a time when consumers are more strapped for cash than ever, all three major first-party companies decided to push forward with the “expensive gaming box” business model rather than strapping down on extras and ensuring the affordability of gaming for the consumer, as the best game consoles of the past have always done.

Former Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi once said: “The console is just a box you buy to get to Mario.” He meant that the real value of a game console comes from its games, and that as a result efforts should be made to make game consoles as cheap as possible. Sadly, the industry doesn’t seem to believe in this ideal any more. They believe in pushing the value of a box and delivering the games later.

  • Beaver

    not my problem if you don’t have the cash for the console bro.

    • Erimgard

      No, but it is the ‘problem’ of Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo to make the average consumer think that their product is worth the cash. People are a lot more willing to open their wallets if they think they’re getting something revolutionary in return.

      • Beaver

        waste of time this article…

        • Marvel

          Waste of time your comments…

          • Beaver

            lol are you made?

            • smcrzgi

              made? lolz. you make me laugh mister beaver.

              • Beaver

                lawl u made^^

        • Beaver


          • smcrzgi

            yolo huh?? you must be REALLY cool if you use that word (note: sarcasm is intended in this sentence). also, made is not a synonym for angry. made is a past tense form of the word make. so id like to ask you, what did i make exactly?

  • Guest

    #author is made and deletes my comment :D

    • Erimgard

      If your comment disappeared, it’s a problem with Disqus.

  • James

    This is a valid point. The only thing I’m really looking forward to related to how games play, is the 64 man matches available for BF4 with the new consoles. I haven’t looked at every game coming out for the consoles, but that’s all I got right now.

  • Ray

    The thing is, people are more than willing to spend 400-500 on a thing they consider “next-gen” especially when a couple years ago when their dollar had more value, they were buying game systems too. Now there are things like tablets and smartphones in the same price range competing for consumers’ money, so dedicated game systems for the same price would be a deterrent (hence why Sony and MS are pushing the social and multi-media aspects of their consoles very hard).

    I’m just saying if people were willing to spend 200-300 bucks back when those prices were today’s equivalent of 600-700, then they’re more than happy to spend 400 today.

  • Kenny

    This article is a fucking joke, the next generation consoles and that is both PS4,Xbox One and the Wii U are going to sell shitloads of consoles and games, you just wait and see. The prices are indeed set right, if you want the best technology then you are going to pay for it period! $400 is not much for a PS4, i will gladly fork out the cash on launch day, and so will millions of others! People don`t care if you think the new consoles are to expensive, we all want better frame rates and higher resolution, more details the list goes on.. When the PS3 was launched the was $600 and it got lower by time when more and more people bought it. The same will happen with the next line of consoles too. This is your opinion only and you should keep that for your self…

    • Guest

      Where did ANYONE say the consoles won’t sell? And you’re all wrong about the PS3′s $600 price tag dropping. It didn’t lower because people were buying it. It lowered because ALMOST NO ONE was buying. Keyword: ALMOST.

      • Kenny

        I don`t know where in the world you live, but in my country (Norway) the PS3 was almost impossible to get hold of, this situation lasted over 6 months. The PS3 did sell very well well, but because of the expensive Cell chip and bluray drive at the time drove the cost up, but still it was the enthusiasts dream machine. Sony calculated higher sales figures the first years than it did, but when the priced dipped the hardware got less expensive. The sales turbo charged, and here in europe it is the number one machine to own as we speak. The keyword in the article is price and bad economy, it is proven that in bad times people use more money on electronics like tablets,mobiles and consoles, they spend less money on restaurants and more for home entertainment. I know what i`m talking about i have worked in the industry for many years by selling games and hardware, i know my stuff. 7 years on paying $400 for a brand new cutting edge machine is not much to pay, in the end people will buy bucket loads of games and consoles. The $400-500 price mark is not a concern, when the consoles takes off the price will start to fall $100, this is the circle of the consoles life. Do your research properly because your statement is very wrong indeed!

  • Phil

    “They believe in pushing the value of a box and delivering the games later.”

    Well you just made every sentence in your article before that completely void. When the PS3 and 360 released, a lot of people had the same complained, graphics looked pretty neat, but nothing new gameplay wise. It’s obviously going to be the case because the designers are still used to the previous way of making games. It’s a transition, so the beginning is always going to have an overlap.

    A lot of people still hold the opinion that this generation (PS3 and 360) was over too early and there was still more mileage that could be had from the systems. I agree there is still plenty more that could be squeezed out of this generation, but I think those same advances could be made with far less effort and far less cost because of the PS4′s and Xbone’s hardware. I think this next generation should last longer because now there’s a lot of technical room and breathing space to do the real high budget stuff (by this generation’s standard) quite easily, and subsequently enabling new and ambitious ideas to come through. I’m hoping next gen we’ll see a real advancement of game making processes.

    And I think it’s good that games at the moment all seem to be the same tired and tested formula. Since the PS2 era, there’s been an endless emphasis on high fidelity textures and realistic models. When that becomes the norm, developers and publishers will hopefully start to think “right, what can we do to make our game stand out? ” Pretty graphics will no longer be a selling point and they’ll be forced to innovate.

    How long did the previous generation last? 7 years? That’s longer than any other set of consoles. How much have people had to spend on PCs to progress through that 7 year period? Way more than £400-500 I’m sure.

    £350 for the PS4 is certainly worth it considering how long I’ll playing games on that console.

    • Alex Plant

      “Well you just made every sentence in your article before that completely void. When the PS3 and 360 released, a lot of people had the same complained, graphics looked pretty neat, but nothing new gameplay wise.”

      Except this time, those consoles don’t even have the jump to HD to “justify” their value.

      • Phil

        The point I was trying to make was that the jump would be on the developers side, having 5-7 gigs of ram changes a lot when you consider the PS3 had about 500 megs of ram. The things they struggled to do on the HD consoles will be a walk in the park on these ones. High fidelity graphics will become less of a focus because it will become so common place.

        And while we’re banging on about price, I don’t know about America but for me in the UK, £350 for the PS4 actually works out cheaper the first Playstation console launching for £300 back in 1994 when you take inflation into account.

    • Orange Lada

      Is it 350? Did you add in that PS+ ownership to the price, if you play online?

      • Phil

        No, why should I? I’m talking about the cost of the hardware, not additional services and peripherals.

  • Tensei

    No need for ‘crucification’ but the question also has to be what do you expect from the industry?

    Gaming has reached a ceiling that is all. Diminishing returns. I dont know why people fear it so much. It happens to every form of media. Books, music, films etc.

    But also flashback last year, and people were literally starving for next-gen like hungry outback wolves. That may not have been the sentiment at large but certainly at the core of the industry.

    I dunno. Gaming has plateau. I think it is just that simple. The fact that all games next year games seem to be open world supports my theory. The only way you can impress these days is by scale and details rather than mechanics.

    • KY_LOZ

      Exactly right.

      And not just a technical plateau but also a creative one where original ideas in games are hard to come by even with the rise of indie gaming, publishers find development costs too risky unless they imitate other popular games.

  • Tomas Velez

    Don’t listen to these children. Great article. People who didnt grow up with the stuff that was available 2 and 3 gens ago dont appreciate what is being lost and what is being thrown at us without question. Sure production costs are high for these machines, but not enough to merit those prices. Xbox slapped a price tag on theirs that read $500. Thats to justify the kinect and all those other little cute things their system can do. For gods sakes when people buy a gaming system they want it for GAMING, not to wave our hands around and talk to our tv so it turns on and off and changes the channel. The industry has become a horrible victim of capitalism on so many levels its not even funny. Its no longer about the art of story telling and adventure, now its about how to make more money from chumps. The sad truth and reality? These idiots take us out to dance and we still get swept off our feet and cave for those prices because there is no more choice….Sad reality.

    • Marvel

      Being able to control things like your TV settings or a motion sensor should’ve been the last thing they considered. They should’ve spent an understandable amount of time polishing a game to ensure its success, then decided to try implementing added features. These features should be the extra sweetness, not the main hook in it all.

  • jugglaj91

    I think I have to disagree. While on the outside it may look like nothing much has changed its the way games will play that is being changed. Sony has that new touch pad on the controller, Microsoft has Kinect and Nintendo has the Gamepad. They all bring unique, if not unwanted, ways to play your favorite games.

    As for price alone a decent gaming rig will cost you around 350, and more if you want real power to last you for a while. Besides, its always about the games, PS4 games do not even have a chance for a PC port so 400 for that is more than justified. 500 for Xbox may seem like a lot but people forget that it comes with Kinect which drives up the cost by at least 100 making it on par with cost for PS4.

    • Alex Plant

      I played PS4 and Xbox One at E3, and I own a Wii U.

      Trust me. Virtually nothing has changed.

      • jugglaj91

        Virtually nothing changed when the 360 launched either. It takes time to get to the meat of a consoles power.

      • Just sayin’

        I was about to say the same thing as jugglaj91. It’ll be a little while before we see games that take full advantage of next gen’s console power.

        And the PS4 and Xbone stuff at E3, yeah, definitely not the final product…

      • KY_LOZ

        What games did you play?

  • Francisco José Velásquez

    but $299 from 1995 is not the same as $299 from 2013

    • Alex Plant

      No, it’s not. But that didn’t stop Nintendo from putting out substantially better hardware for 5 generations in a row for between $200-250.

      • Phil

        And the XBox One has kinect 2.0, hence the $100 increase from the 360′s price. (And in all fairness, I’d rather pay the extra $100 for kinect, as it has a lot of potential. I think it’s very brave for Microsoft to ship every Xbox One with a Kinect, the only problem is I doubt devs will be brave enough to create new and compelling software for it.)

  • Matthew Shannon

    its hard to realize that the advances arent just graphics. The biggest improvement is the magnitude of games. Think about recent Open-world games being the size of small countries, but even they weren’t truely open world, you had loading screens between towns, overworlds, shops, dungeons, and houses. Imagine having those games running seemlessly without load screens, and being 10x in size. Think about playing a WoW sized game with crysis 2 level graphics, without load screens. THAT is what the next gen consoles are capable of. just look at the graphics cards, running 8GB of RAM, when the ps3 was about 250 MB. that is roughly 40 times more memory being processed in a single command fetch, AND! (with the PS4 atleast) it is DDR5 compared to DDR3, meaning it can compute commands roughly 8 times as fast. So the advance may look a bit blurred, But in a few years you will play a PS4 game, and it will make a PS3 game look like an 8-bit game.

  • Jeremy Abrahamson

    Compare the Wii to the Wii U, it’s at least the same level of jump as the jump to HD, which isn’t even considering the new controller design, which is admittedly underused. Also note you mentioned the Wii U at 300, and then stated successful consoles are 299.99 and under. that’s a dollar difference there, for a system which is an improvement in every way over the set of wiis that didn’t include GC backwards compat, and quite a noticeable one. Particularly noticeable, in my opinion, was the drop-dead gorgeous Mario Kart 8, which could use a better name. It blows the wii installment out of the water, aesthetically, and has additional content across the board. I think you’re being deliberately unfair to the Wii U, considering it’s changes compared to the prices you listed.


    • Alex Plant

      Wii U still alienates people price-wise by making the $300 model unattractive to make the $350 one look better.

      • Jeremy Abrahamson

        That’s a fair point, one which you probably should have mentioned in the article itself. It still comes across like you’re being unfair to Nintendo.

        • Alex Plant

          TBH, the only reason why I even said “$300 or less” is because of PS1 and PS2.

  • coatlesscarl

    It’s funny that a bunch of developers were complaining that the power of current gen systems was holding them back creatively, and then all they show off at E3 are the same kinds of experiences with some extra shimmer. I’ve seen too many people that seem to think that the PS4 and it’s “8GB of DDR5 RAM” will automatically make games better, and they use words like “immersion” and “emotion” as if these concepts have never been experienced in videogames before.

    • Napoleon Tascon

      So true.

    • Siddhartha Jain

      I’m just waiting for Naughty Dog’s title for the PS4.
      That’ll show ‘em.

  • Axe99

    Looking at static (nominal) prices without adjusting for changing value of money (inflation) makes for atrocious analysis, particularly over long time periods. Have a gander at what $299 in 1994 (PS1 launch) is in today’s dollars and you’d find that next-gen consoles are at about the same price ($299 in 1994 is around $470 in today’s dollars). If your argument is cost-of-living based, then it’s failed. The only way this could hold up is if people made purchasing decisions independently of everything else they spent money on _except_ historic purchases of the same good. Of course, if they did that, they’d have stopped eating out at restaurants or buying books a long time ago ;).

    • Orange Lada

      Well the PS4 and Xbox One are tied to an annual subscription cost (not applicable to Wii U), so I’d argue the price point is still likely far higher today on those two consoles.

      Not to mention Moores Law with respect to technology. Remember when digital LCD watches cost $200+? That $200 would be a far higher percentage of disposable income today.

      • Axe99

        Not a fair comparison – you couldn’t go online with the PSOne, and you don’t need a subscription to go online with the PS4 or XB1. In effect, you’re paying for a greater range of services than consoles of the past provided. If you just want to use the consoles like you used older consoles, no subscription is needed. If, on the other hand, you wanted to price the cost of the nearest equivalent services in 1994 at 1994 dollars, it would likely be far greater than $60/$50 a year.

        Moore’s law, on the other hand, is in full effect, but the argument works in favour of value, not the other way around – the price of these devices has fallen in real terms, while their capability (processing power) has risen – which means you get a _lot_ more for the price of a console now than you did then.

  • Robert Gonzalez

    Is this guy even aware of the term inflation? The SNES was originally launched in 1991 for 199. Which is well over 300 dollars in 2013. The reason why the commodore 64 didn’t sell was because the price was ridiculous for what it was. 599 in 1982 would be a whopping 1400+ dollars now. Hmm is the ps4 selling for that much? Get your facts straight.

    • Alex Plant

      NES (1985) – $199
      SNES (1991) – $199
      N64 (1996) – $199
      GCN (2001) – $199
      Wii (2006) – $249 (fueled by the correct perception of high demand)
      Wii U (2012) – $299 (due to the GamePad)

      That’s funny, I don’t recall inflation impacting console prices before…

      • Jeremy Comans

        i Inflation effects the price of everything? We earn slightly more, and the price of goods goes up as a whole either faster or slower than our wages. Over the last 20 years in the States, faster. Very simple economics.
        Also in Australia N64, PS1 and PS2 were well over $300, and with inflation and average disposable incomes were actually much more expensive than the PS4 is being released at. A console launch has never before given so much bang for the dollar.
        Any way, even ignoring inflation, which is wrong, your argument is , ‘$400 is too much for a powerful gaming console, because 30 years ago I could buy a oversized calculator for half that price’.

      • Robert Gonzalez

        The point I’m trying to get across is your statement of under 300 dollars is invalid when putting inflation into consideration. Do you also know what is funny? Consoles didn’t play movies for you nor did they connect to the internet, they didn’t let you play multi-player games with someone miles away from you. I understand Nintendo kept their price 5 generations in a row for under $250. But many features were added from the transition from 6th generation to 7th other than a hardware boost. Before then consoles only had one purpose and it was to play games. Now that isn’t the case. The game industry is simply getting with the times. Or are you were you unaware that people other than gamers play games on a casual basis and would love to do what they can do on their phones, smart tv’s, tablet’s, etc. on they console which they happen to also play games on.
        You mentioned that the box is more important than the games now. With that logic why ever buy a new anything. Why buy an HD TV when you can watch the same movies on your old tv. Its just a device that does the same thing anyways.

  • Escopablobar

    Peceived value is a relative thing. For instance I see the jump in higher sustained frame rates and advanced effects (only found on present day PCs) to be extremely valuable. For those of us who only play on consoles these types of features serve as our bridge to the present and near future. We will no longer be stuck in 2005 or 2006.

    I do agree that we may have seen the last $300 machine in the Wii, but I disagree that prices north of $300 will deter 1st and 2nd adopters. Mass market adoption usually occurs at the $200-$250 price point and is reserved for a console’s mid-life. Also if there is anything that consumer electronics like the iPhone have shown me is that people of all economic backgrounds are willing to spend 200 plus dollars on annual releases of a product that barely iterates on the utility. So in my opinion I see no value in buying the same phone very year but I am I the dissenting minority.

    Finally you cannot judge these machines by their launch lineups. First generation games are absolutely not reflective of a console’s full abilities. Dev kits will improve and more innovative features and services will be added. And I believe that in part will define the generational leap we are all waiting for…Oculus Rift, Twitch Tv, Ustream, Deeper social integration, Skype. These are all new to the console space and people will find value.

  • zdog

    People buy new consoles for new experiences, and this generation just is having a hard time selling their new experiences. Wii U was supposed to deliver new two screen experiences, yet none of their new 1st party games show much promise there. Sony and Microsoft are promising better graphics with bells and whistles attached but it just doesn’t seem different enough. I think they’ll get off to a slow start but when all is said and done this will be just like the PS2, Xbox, Gamecube era. Sony dominates, Xbox has its audience, and Nintendo seems irrelevant except to its dedicated fanbase and even they are disappointed.

    • Alex Plant

      Nah, won’t happen. $400 PS4, $500 Xbox One, and $350 Wii U won’t sell like the $300 PS2, $300 Xbox, or $200 GameCube when all’s said and done.

      • zdog

        Good point. I agree that the overall pie will shrink because of the price points. What I meant though was in regards to proportion, not size, and I feel the proportion of the market regardless of how far it shrinks down to will looks similar to that previous era. That or it will be like Windows XP and the previous generation will just never go away.

  • datdude

    Millions of people will buy the PS4….at launch. Something is worth what the consumer is willing to pay for it. The PS4 is priced appropriately and offers a good value. I find it hard to believe that the author could have played Destiny, The Division, Watch_Dogs, or Infamous Second Son and have a legitimate question as to whether those could be running on current hardware. That is not reasonable. So when the “author” brings up that point, he loses all credibility. It was obvious at last years E3 that the Watch_Dogs demo was not running on a 360 or PS3, so I have to question the “authors” credibility and credentials.

    • Alex Plant

      Destiny, Watch_Dogs are both coming to current-gen.

      • datdude

        What’s your point? That’s like saying Battlefield 3 was available on pc and consoles. Guess which offers the better experience? Comparing the pc version of that game to the console version is a joke. As will be comparing next gen versions of those games to their current gen counterparts. Again, I question what your point is.

  • SomethingSomethingGOAT

    I completely agree with this article. The difference between next-gen and current gen games look to be practically unidentifiable to the average consumer. I don’t know why these companies think the average Fifa/Cod player is gonna care enough about better framerates or less loading screens to spend $500 on a new console and they represent the majority of console gamers. I would like to see the new consoles embracing MMO’s and “Persistent worlds”(whatever that means) and them becoming the norm. I’m certain the first developer to create an AAA MMO aimed at casuals (eg Halo MMO, Assassins Creed MMO) will become the casual console gamers new obssession (ala Cod). Until then i haven’t seen anything on the new consoles i can’t get on current gen consoles except less shiny.

  • Marvel

    I would really be happy if the things Nintendo showed off were hoaxes (save for Super Smash Bros.) and they have been developing completely unique games all along, and wanted to fake gamers out.

  • Marvel

    There are moments when I want to defend Nintendo, and there are moments when I want to knock on the door and say “Hello? Any extremely daring and creative geniuses in there?” I enjoy a good Mario, Zelda, and Donkey Kong game (not so much Donkey Kong), but I feel that all of the things shown should’ve been DLC for previous games.

  • heavenshitman1

    Reasonable article, and a genuine sentiment from a paying consumer. But I think we’re living in a world where everyone seems to think everything is free and worth nothing. Hardware costs, electronics cost. Any attempt to be one of these companies think you’d quickly find that they’re actually selling all this as utterly cheap as possible. If I passed anyone on this post a few hundred dollars, dare anyone to try and build me a (speaking as a WiiU owner,) miniaturized, moderate performance (No one can say ‘The Last of Us’, Halo 3, Lego City Undercover looks bad visually or technically, last gen performance is just fine), with remote off screen play, HD DVD tech in an energy efficient package.
    The main issue is that the world on average is getting poorer. So yes the gaming world is becoming tighter and less affordable like any business. Just like we complain about fuel prices and as a biscuit manufacturer myself, how ppl complain about paying a few dollars for sweet biscuits. Stop complaining, it’s just a reality.
    As for my WiiU, I support the direction it takes with it’s ability to make games different, and potentially more interactive. I think Wii Fit U will demonstrate its unique factor very much the best. I’ll stick with my 2 year old PC for now to play my PS4/XBOX One esque games. Worst case scenario, a video card upgrade

  • claudio S

    This article remarks the truth about the gaming industry, it is not about consoles or games anymore but about entertaiment and multimedia services. Gaming has changed, the companies priced their consoles at a higher price because they offer more services, online features, etc. I don’t like it because many of those “services or multimedia features” I won’t even use for instance: the mandatory Kinect on Xbox one, the share button on the PS4 controller or even the gamepad on the WII U, which apparently Nintendo is not using this year. We just have to face the fact that the good old times of just playing games are long gone.

  • The_Hyphenator

    Yeah, I’d have to agree. I love my Wii U and I think that the system will prove itself, but I don’t think Nintendo has done enough yet to justify the comparably high price tag. And the same goes double for the PS4 and Xbone; the Wii U at least represents a big leap forward from the Wii, but honestly, the PS4 and Xbone titles we’ve seen so far barely look any better than what was possible on their predecessors.

    Gaming enthusiasts may be able to see the difference and think that it’s worth $400-500. But most people won’t, and they’re not going to touch the systems until they approach that $200 sweet spot. All three consoles will have slow launches, especially in a down economy.

  • TehLeetHaxor

    No point getting a console this generation. Just spend $100 to $200 to upgrade your PC’s video card.

  • Jeremy Comans

    What were these consoles you were getting for under $300? A gameboy perhaps? The launch lineups for the next gen are quite weak, but by the end of next year there are a whole bunch of games releasing that seem very firmly parked in next-gen land.

    • Alex Plant


      • Jeremy Comans

        I sometimes forget that people aren’t talking Australian prices, none of those consoles were close to $300 at launch.

  • der

    in Obama’s economy, who really has disposable income any more? besides the 1% of course.

    • Alex Plant

      The current economic circumstances kicked off in ’07. Just saying.


    there is one point you did not mention. This generation of consoles has lasted much longer than the previous ones (8+ years for Xbox 360, and 7+ for PS3. Even the PS2 lasted well over 8 years (thanks in part to the incredible God of War I and II). Given that the systems are lasting longer, and more software and entertainment is available for them than previous consoles, I think the higher prices are justified. And lets face it, these are not really just game consoles anymore. The PS3 plays DVD and Blu-Ray disks. HBO Go can be watched on the Xbox, and even the Wii allows you to watch Netflix. You can also browse the web on PS3 and Xbox 360, among many other services. All of these new forms of entertainment are only expanded upon with the new consoles. The $300 console doesn’t mean the same thing as it used to, partially due to inflation. But even accounting for that, you are getting a heck of a lot more for your money than the previous consoles offered.

  • Monty Keegan

    The same thing could be said about ipads and cellphones. None add real new value but people eat them up and buy them ten times more often and upgrade sometimes yearly just to get the new addition. Consoles don’t release that often. There is enough for me to had put down money on both the Xbox One and PS4 (as I did). The PS4 is at a more than reasonable price considering the PS3.

    These consoles don’t offer just more of the same. The processing power and the added RAM will allow developers more flex their ability to be more creative, allow for better A.I., better physics, and allow more things on screen. It will allow for much impressive looking worlds the developers envision. If you want something more innovative that what it offers, it would cost way more than 399.99 and would be a bigger risk. Nothing is wrong with what the PS4 and Xbox One is offering.

  • Gene Gabriel

    People are willing to buy phones that are worth $700 just for a minor speed bump or some features that they’ll never gonna use..and you are complaining about consoles that are actually cheaper than phones and are leaps and bounds better than their earlier versions..what kind of logic is that?

  • wil

    This is hilarious next generation consoles are not worth there price yet its ok to pay 700 for cell phones and tablets that do less. They are selling these at a loss to say they are not worth the price is more crazy than betting your home on a 2 legged horse to win a race. They are in xbox one case the same price as last generation and in ps4 case cheaper this time around. This is a trolling article

  • Guest

    No they’re not worth it. Not all of us have parents willing to give their child $500 to buy a black box, then $60 for a paper card, then $60 more for every game you want to buy…