“The idea of starting from scratch every few years is… crazy.”
On the whole, it sounds like developers are actually very happy and on board with the upcoming PlayStation 4 Neo and the Xbox One Scorpio- even companies like Epic, whose primary business remains the peddling of their middleware engines, such as Unreal Engine 4, are excited about the disruption to the traditional console cycle.
“I’m absolutely thrilled with this,” Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney said in a recent interview with Eurogamer. “It gives you the best of both worlds, the upgrade cycle of the PC which ensures that people always have access to the latest and greatest hardware and games don’t go out of date over a seven year cycle, together with the fact there’s a box you can go and buy – or two boxes – and you’re guaranteed that everything can work. And I think the configurations for developers are very reasonable.
“From an industry insider perspective, the console industry will grow and sustain its user base much better if it doesn’t have to reset its user base to zero every seven years. The idea of throwing everything out and doing everything from scratch every seven years is completely crazy. And everything Epic’s done with our new game development approach, involving these online games we’re going to maintain over time, it’s about building games where we don’t have to reset our user base to zero when we want to add new features.”
This is, of course, the view I have always held– and this kind of incremental hardware cycle is absolutely essential for the continued existence of gaming consoles, or they shall soon find themselves made obsolete in a tech market that moves far too fast for them.