Are last generation’s tournament shooters dead?
Professional gaming is coming more and more to the forefront, MLG and Twitch have some of the most popular streams on the planet. Starcraft, League of Legends, and Call of Duty have been “the” go-to when it comes to competitive gaming. There’s one glaring fact out of those examples though, only one is played on a console. So that got me asking the question, “has the newest generation killed last generation’s tournament shooter?” In my opinion and because this is my post, yes. But not to the fault of gamers, blame can be spread across the board elsewhere.
Let’s take the newest, latest, greatest, and record breaking launch of the PS4 and Xbox One as one slice of the blame pie. Next we hit the developers and publishers of those “tournament or competitive” shooters. Lastly the strike goes to the professional gaming community at large.
Face it, with the launch of a new generation everyone would rather be playing COD or Battlefield on the fastest and greatest looking console. I prefer to play on the console with the highest competitive edge, but it appears Xbox 360 is no longer that option.
My time spent with Call of Duty: Ghosts on the Xbox 360 was borderline horrific. COD: Ghosts is easily the weakest of the series, and arguably of the entire franchise, and it has nothing to do with being unimaginative. Ghosts is actually a jump forward in many aspects. You can finally customize the look of your soldier and the perk system has been revamped. Spending extra quality time with Ghosts is when it starts to show its faults, however. Level design has no rhyme or reason and rewards camping, not strategy. Bottlenecks and sniping spots do not promote strategy in gameplay. The perk system has been revamped, but there are very few perks that actually make a difference. The best results are still afforded to accuracy (which is terrible in Ghosts thanks to terrible hit detection) and the ability to stay off radar. Many of the killstreaks or pointstreaks are so overpowered that it made the games almost unbearable to stay in once someone was afforded one. Dreadfully boring to play and I can only imagine how dreadfully boring it could be to watch.
Don’t think I’m only picking on Call of Duty, an easy scapegoat yes, but Battlefield 4 is just as guilty, delivering a completely broken game across all platforms. So broken that one patch wasn’t enough, so broken that further DLC was scrapped until the current game is fixed, so broken that season pass holders were refunded, and so broken that there’s upcoming legal action from false advertising. After the games release and announcement of DLC delays, EA’s stock actually dropped 7.3% prompting a firm to seek legal action. LEGAL ACTION! Poring salt on the wound, BF4 still doesn’t have party or squad support, hell, World of Tanks: 360 Edition is in beta and even it has party support. Maybe it was oversight by the developers, or maybe it was pressure from an oppressive publisher, either way, the game should have never been released.
This is evidence that the majority of the gaming community, consumers, professional gamers, and developers have moved on to next gen or high powered PC’s. Hell, with the ease of streaming on my PS4, why the hell would I stream on anything else? Xbox One doesn’t have streaming yet, but it’s planned for early 2014, striking yet another blow to last generation.
World of Tanks 360 is the only thing I still play competitively on this last generation of consoles, and I don’t plan on playing any other shooters competitively until Titanfall arrives in March. Blacklight: Retribution brings a strong argument as a tournament shooter though, the game is still in it’s raw beta stage, but it shows promise. These are the games that will put the final nail in the coffin, games of this generation that are here now and off not too far in the distance, something new, something aggressive, and something with hype. It’s exciting, but also sad seeing the last generation slowly drift away without struggle.