We all have heard about the console wars throughout the years. Making it’s prominence in the 90’s with the “Nintendo vs Sega” war of the Super Nintendo vs the Sega Genesis, the concept of a console war never has truly gone away since then. Every generation has been one in some way to most people, but the 8th generation has had it slow down.
Personally, I think it’s good that these console wars slow down. Nowadays, I view the concept of a console war rather pointless. While the main point of these console wars is competition between the companies, the main idea of it is starting to simmer down and it’s starting to show it’s way out.
I think there are other reasons as to why it’s a good thing the console wars are starting to go away and here are some of them:
The Companies are More Civil
In the 8th generation, the major companies have had no issue to get together and collaborate on something. Microsoft and Nintendo are the biggest examples of this with many examples such as Ori & The Blind Forest & Cuphead being on the Nintendo Switch and having Banjo-Kazooie in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. People are wondering if even Sony would make it into Smash Bros. just for the novelty having all three companies under one roof.
While Sony has been the one who stood out as the one who hasn’t been as willing to play ball with the others, they have been opening up to the idea. They are going to put Horizon: Zero Dawn on PC and there is a heavily rumored Bloodborne PC port as well so Sony have been slowly willing to try working with other companies.
Because of factors like these, the main aspect of the console wars, the competition between companies, is starting to lose it’s relevance. I think this right here will lead to the console wars likely being forgotten more and more once we go into the 9th generation. Will they? Only time will tell.
Unnecessary Hostility Among Fanbases
Due to the competitive nature of the console wars, all three have dedicated fanbases that have lasted decades. Also due to the competitive nature of the console wars, certain parts of each fanbase are straight up vitriolic towards the others due to sheer allegiance and loyalty.
All three having dedicated fanbases is obviously a good thing as it gives them not only just a big source of revenue, but also a medium to which create more and more projects to appease what they like to a dedicated audience. But when things go vitriolic because of sheer loyalty to a different company and they start spewing venom towards the other because of it, that’s when things turn unnecessary.
Obviously, if the console wars due to end up being an outdated concept and is dropped, there will always be a part of each fanbase dedicated to things of that nature. The console wars ending will not end these behaviors, nor have they started them. They have however exacerbated them throughout the years and even the companies themselves have started to notice that.
Splits and Divides
Like stated earlier, while they certainly didn’t start this kind of behavior, they have made them worse over the years. This has lead to not just parts of the fanbase hating the other fanbases because of preferences, but also within their own as well.
“Not a true Xbox fan”, “Not a true Nintendo fan”, “Not a true Sony fan” are phrases that one likely might have heard throughout the Internet, especially in the 2000’s or even in the early 2010’s. The most common one is “hardcore gamer” or “real gamer”. The console wars made people take these phrases seriously at a point and some people were ostracized by them due to not being these things according to some people.
It just makes one ask “what constitutes or makes a gamer?”. Nintendo fans got a lot of hate thrown at them, especially throughout the Wii era, as not being “hardcore gamers”. The more this phrase gets thrown around, the more it just sounds arbitrary and dated because at the end of the day, we are all gamers. We play games and that’s enough.
So overall, the console wars have made the companies involved make a lot of money to be able to improve their finances and creative muscles, but when it comes to the long run of the people involved in them, it’s a rather outdated concept.
Do you agree with these reasons or do you think you could add more or do you disagree entirely? Whatever your thoughts may be, post them in the comments below.