A reader explores the most disappointing aspects of the last 10 years of gaming, from the PlayStation Classic to the Wii U.
Whilst I always look forward to the end of year (decade?) summaries and the best of lists to argue over, I thought I would offer an alternative perspective. Below are a few of my own, randomly selected ‘worst ofs’ from the 2010s:
I’m all for retro. I think the recent spate of mini consoles has generally been of an excellent quality and offering an easy solution for those of us that want easy access to many of the classics from yesteryear. Except for the PlayStation Classic.
I wrote in recently, commenting on how Sony failed to generate consumer enthusiasm for this, despite the success of Nintendo’s mini offerings, but a combination of questionable game selection, poor emulation, and lack of analogue sticks has led to a real stinker of a console. One that can’t be given away on Gumtree in exchange for a couple of mince pies.
What are we up to now? Far Cry 17? Modern Warfare 59? The economics of producing AAA games means that publishers are understandably not prepared to take risks, but it is depressing when many of this generation’s new titles have been genuine classics.
If FromSoftware relied on sequels there would have been no Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice or Bloodborne. Whilst Naughty Dog pushed out a number of Uncharteds, only when they branched out into a new world did The Last Of Us make its impact on gamers. I don’t expect the trend for sequels to change into the next generation, but I do look forward to any new genuinely new games that are released.
Throw in season passes, pre-order bonuses, and loot boxes. I’ve reached a point of acceptance that this is an inevitable approach for publishers to recoup the cost of development (and occasionally make obscene amounts of profit) but, to me, this has been the biggest scourge on gaming in the last 10 years.
From including free-to-play mechanics in full priced releases to the blatant gambling mechanics aimed at fleecing real world money from the young or vulnerable, publishers have repeatedly shown there is no depth to which they won’t crawl to relieve you of your money.
Oh, the poor, poor Wii U. Unloved, largely forgotten, often ridiculed. Nintendo’s biggest misstep of the 2010s gave us years of keyboard business analysts shouting about how this was Nintendo’s inevitable demise, how they should become a software developer only (incredibly espousing the Sega model as one to follow!) and simply make their games available for all platforms. Losing everything that makes them unique along the way.
I loved the Wii U. On my own. Holding the tablet-cum-controller thingy gently on my lap. It was daring and different and utterly neglected. That the Switch has been so thoroughly embraced was to a significant degree based on the gaming foundations of the Wii U: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Splatoon, Mario Maker, Zelda: Breath Of The Wild, and more. Fantastic experiences that started life on the Wii U.
I don’t grieve for its premature death, all the great consoles are put out to pasture at some point. It’s the shortened life and unfulfilled potential that I mourn for. Now, if anyone wants me I’ll be playing one of my many Virtual Console games. Sniff. I’m not crying, you’re crying. Sniff.
By reader ProEvoSan78 (PSN ID)
The reader’s feature does not necessary represent the views of GameCentral or Metro.