Tell Us Dammit: Will The Next Generation Of Consoles Be The Last?

Well, seeing as the Wii U's already been released, the PlayStation 4 is on its way and it's just a matter of time before Microsoft's new console is unveiled, the existence of a 'next generation' of consoles is a sure thing — but do you expect another cycle? Will the new generation of consoles be the last?

I'm in two minds, but I definitely believe that the new generation of console will be the last generation of consoles as we now know them. That almost sounds like a nonsense statement, but I suppose my point is this: the PS4, Wii U and (presumabley) the next Xbox will be machines that mostly play by the same rules at their predecessors. I don't expect any other console released after to play by those same rules.

I have no idea what new consoles will look like, or what they'll do, but they'll have to evolve significantly or die.

What do you guys and girls think?


    There will always be consoles and there will always be people that buy them.

    A lot of very strong IP's are console only. I don't see everyone that bought a Wii U, PS4 and Xbox whatever going to PC after this generation.

    The Xbox 2 and PS3 are still going strong and I expect their replacements will too.

      And I wad just gonna say no.

        This reminds me of the head of the patent office resigning, claiming that "no more patents will ever be filed"
        Even if the story is false, it is clearly representative of this story.
        The idea that there will never be another console is absurd.
        There is approximately 10,000 years left of human civilization (using rough estimation) in which untold things will happen, and saying that something will never happen again is silly.

      There will always be consoles and there will always be people that buy them. O RLY?

        Yes, I have no interest in cloud gaming.

          Well that's settled it then, call it off everybody. Don't worry about it NVidia. Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo, please continue on as you are, Darren has no interest in cloud gaming.

          Well that took a while, but thanks Darren, you've rendered this whole article and topic useless.

          In case anybody missed it, Cloud Gaming is not going to be a thing any more, Darren has no interest in it.

          Last edited 25/03/13 11:27 am

            Don't worry mate, I am just one of the people who will still buy consoles.

            You can cloud game all you want :)

              That's the thing, I will be able to cloud game all I want.

              Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo sell their consoles at a loss. If they can cut this out then they will, end of story.

              Another reason consoles have to die...

    I think its too early to say. So much has changed since the last generation came out (smart phones, crowd funding, indie resurgence) I don't know how we can possibly know what the industry will be like after this gen.

    I am betting that this gen will last a decade though, and Nintendo may have a second entry to it.

    The line between console and PC with continue to blur until there is no difference. Digital sales will continue to push us towards this with PC /iOS digital sales well ahead in volume and profits compared to closed / limited content systems with the gaming consoles. People want media devices that do everything either portably (iPhones etc) or fixed (Home PC's and networks).

    The real test in the near future isn't how successful the Xbox720 / PS4 will be but how a new line of 'Living Room' PC's like Steambox sells and catches on with average 'non-tech junkie' market. Prices of PC hardware continues to decline so price is becoming less of an issue for this to happen.

    Consoles won't disappear you're forgetting how damn popular they are I reckon they coincide with the mobile phone and the PC and will always have it's place in the market.

    I think we're definitely moving away from the traditional methods of delivering games on some kind of physical media, which is a bit of a shame. Have always liked that new game smell.

    However, I still think we are a long way from some stuff like streaming games across the internet, thanks in no small part to high speed internet not being available in many countries.

    I dunno, might be interesting to see what will happen. I definitely think though that we are moving away from dedicated gaming machines and into the realm of all-in-one media machines though. It'll be a sad day when that happens and the traditional console is no longer used.

    Last edited 21/03/13 11:21 am

    Consoles are still selling fine, even this late in the generation and the games are coming. So I doubt it.

    The time of the console is drawing to an end. Cloud Gaming or 'Gaming as a Service' is a publishers wet dream.
    Subscription fees, anti-piracy by nature, blah blah blah.
    There may be one or two more generations of consoles, but I can't see a market for them past the next 8-10 years, who wants a stupid box taking up space when you can stream your games to your TV.
    Get used to seeing 'Continuous Internet Connection' in minimum system requirements.

    Last edited 21/03/13 11:24 am

      Yeah, but you still need something that can display and play said games, such as a console + controller. Yeah, there may not be a box under your TV in the near future but if the controller itself is what gives you access to the games, internet and the ability to play them then the controller itself just becomes the console. I don't think console necessarily has to mean "box under the TV" in this instance. We call handhelds "consoles" too.

        There might be a blurring of Console/Controller, that may be the Ninth Generation of consoles, but eventually there will be no need for a console that performs it's own processing.

        In my eyes a Controller that processes a game is a console, but a controller that only does input is a peripheral (A remote control isn't a television).

          No, but according to the definition of console, a remote control for a TV IS a console. ;)

            OK, we'll ignore my Television/Remote analogy.
            Let's stay on Gaming Consoles, in the traditional sense.

              I was only being facetious. :)
              I tend to agree that we will see things like you have described in the future.

    In a few years, we're gonna look back at this 'is it the last console' talk and lol.

    No, I think consoles will still have a place after this generation. Lots of people like it that consoles can't be modded and mucked around with. And that accessories are made specifically for it and will work as described if they are first party.

    I think PC sales and gaming may grow, but consoles, in some form, still have a very strong following and a place in the market.

    It's too early to call. I think that streaming is the future in the long-term, but that will require sufficient internet structure to be in place. Sony seem to be hedging their bets by retaining a disc drive in the PS4, whilst introducing the capacity for streaming content. My guess is that if streaming does take off (and that is a big if in the next ten years), this will be the last playstation.

    No. There will be people who want to buy a PS5 or Xbox9000, and Sony/Microsoft will oblige.

    Everyone knows the SNES was the last generation. PCs ate consoles alive with their ever increasing stats, custom components and decreasing costs. Does nobody pay attention?

    Seriously though we hear this every generation. Consoles keep marching on, and they tend to decide their features based on the lowest common denominators of the last generation plus a new function or two. Most of those new features are either passive or radical, and the radical ones rarely take. Overall it's a pretty conservative system so they slowly evolve rather than scrapping it all and starting a new species.

    There has been some sort of gaming related device attached to people's TVs for the last 40 years or so, I don't expect this will change so no, this isn't the last round of consoles. The features, capabilities, restrictions, appearance etc may change but it will still boil down to a box you plug into your TV that you can play games on (among other things).

    Also, if you want to look at the very definition of the word "console", any PC is already a console as it is a "unit that accommodates controls for electronic equipment". That'll piss off the "master race". ;)

      I am duly offended! Have a well-meaning downvote for your trouble, courtesy of your friendly local Master Race representative! :)

        So you aren't denying my logic or the definition, just down voting for fun? I also play my games on a PC, (but I'm a heathen because I use a 360 controller), and I can't even trust my brethren to take a joke! This makes me sad. ;)

          Well that joke of mine certainly fell flat. :(
          Sorry, Since the down votes are essentially pointless, I meant for it to lend a little extra oomph to the (definitely not arguing) Master Race masquerade. I failed - I invert my votage in penance.

          I mean, obviously PCs are superior and all, but there's no need for my brothers in virtual arms to be dicks about it. :}

          Last edited 21/03/13 4:47 pm

    Consoles will exist for decades to come...but they'll transform into PCs that connect to our TVs. Let's face it, tablets are replacing PCs & consoles will replace PCs. We'll see games and software thats uploaded to a hard drive like Windows or the new Sim City game. An always-on internet connection is the inevitable (unfortunately).

    Interesting statement, but I think consoles will be around in some way or another. I think eventually the home pc, media center & video game console will merge into the one system, which won't be a bad thing. So long as its main focus is gaming.

    I think they'll stick around, but I think game disks will be phased out for downloads and serial keys. It cuts down on costs, lets them dictate their own terms about used games and whether you can sell the code back to them and it makes sure that everyone would have the same version of the game.

    I hope that the Steam Box might be a start of PC's in the living room, years away though.

      PC's can already be in the living room, but most people don't know how to set up a convenient system or have no knowledge that it can be done.

      Last edited 21/03/13 2:02 pm

    Seeing as the new consoles are essentially PCs inside a pre-made box running set OS, I think it's safe to say this trend will continue.

    Better hardware inside new boxes running new or refined OS'.
    Though speculation is pointless, and our opinions mean nothing.
    All we can do is wait and see.

    The people who say we won't have consoles anymore fall into two categories:

    1) people whose longevity relies on the death of the current style of gaming console (i.e.: people who are offering cloud services like OnLive);

    2) people who are saying we will no longer buy "dedicated" gaming consoles. As I have pointed out before, this is a safe bet since the last "dedicated gaming console", i.e.: a console that ONLY played games, was the Gamecube. The PS1 played music CDs, as did the Dreamcast. The Dreamcast had a web browser. The PS2 and Xbox played DVDs. The PS3 plays Blu-rays, the Xbox 360 supports HDDVD. All current gen consoles have a web browser. The PS3/360 stream digital media from a local server or PC, they have apps for watching TV and youtube videos. You can post to Facebook and Twitter. You can even access Foxtel through your 360 now.
    The consoles we have in our homes now are not dedicated gaming consoles. They are entertainment hubs. The next generation will move more in this direction, and that's fine. This hub will become more central to the entertainment environment in the home.

    So sure, the "gaming console" will die off because the level of feature creep in the next generation or two will make it hard to market the Xbox3/PS4/Xbox4/PS5 etc. as pure gaming devices when they do so much more than that.

    Yes but only if games start to innovate, how many AAA titles have you played recently that aren't cookie cutter games or sequels?

    In my honest opinion the AAA gaming industry is starting to stagnate, companies are playing it safe with hardened IP's and arent testing the waters for new things and i could be leading to another video game crash like in the early 80's.

    I can see a rise in companies making cheaper indie focus consoles, the Ouya might succeed or it might fail but it might set the ball rolling for a market that isn't purely dominated by Sony, Microsoft or Nintendo.

    PS. Of course this is just my opinion, i'm probably wrong but i am open for debate.

    Last edited 21/03/13 12:04 pm

      I agree with your statement about the AAA gaming industry and their hardened and tested IPs. But as soon as a store similar to steam comes for consoles (more easily accessable to indie developers) and an improvement in the security of crowd funding, I think we should see a rise in the quality of games.

    My definition of a console is basically a fixed hardware platform, and those are always going to be cheaper for developers to work on (especially when you know you have the same target for 5-10 years).
    We've been pushing the limit of what is financially viable with regards to game sizes, no matter how much stronger PCs get than consoles, unless we can find a way to radically reduce costs, the raw PC power will never push the consoles away.

    People like having something small set up in the lounge room, sometimes for the kids to play.
    They won't always want their kids having access to the internet and certainly wouldn't want their credit card details on the device their kids have access to, as such retail sales will continue.

    Finally Nintendo, even if Microsoft decide to just make a unified Windows everywhere experience and Sony bow out of the console market, Nintendo will keep on keeping on.
    Mario will always sell, Zelda will always sell, Nintendo will always be able to sell consoles using those IPs alone.

    Consoles aren't going anywhere.

    Certainly, we're reaching a threshold for cpu/memory/storage in consoles, at least for current gen games. If you think of current gen games, then there's no need to really go past ps4 level performance and abilities.

    For future gen games, though, there will be a need for new hardware. New control methods, storage, communications, displays, virtual reality, whatever else they dream up, will drive new console versions.

    What do i think, I think you spelt presumably incorrect :-)

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