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[personal profile] aparrish
I'm not likely to buy a new system soon, due to budgetary constraints. But given the breadth of the gaming world I can't help but obsess over the following question: which system should I buy? I already have a Wii, a DSi, and a PS2. My main criterion: which system offers the best ratio of FUN to COST OF OWNERSHIP?

Maybe you can help me out. Poll below.

PC ($1000+?)

  • Tons of games I want to play
  • Lots of indie games
  • Obviously, there are many free and cheap tools for tinkering and development
  • This is the most expensive option, even if I build my own
  • Hungry for power and apartment real estate
  • Might be superfluous, if I can swing decent graphics in my next laptop upgrade (the $1999 MacBook Pro?)---and actually my current laptop can run a lot of good PC games that I don't have time to play anyway

XBox 360 ($300)

  • Also, tons of games I want to play---and most of the PC games I want to play are also available on 360
  • Least expensive of the full-blown console options
  • Netflix! That would be cool.
  • Still a significant chunk of change, and the Gold fee doesn't help with that
  • Not homebrew friendly

PlayStation 3 ($350)

  • The Last Guardian
  • I guess I wouldn't mind having a Bluray player?
  • Pricey; most of the games I'd want to play have (sometimes superior) 360/PC ports
  • PS3? I mean, come on.

iPod Touch ($180 refurbished)

  • Not too expensive, and the software's generally pretty cheap too
  • Accessible to indie developers, vibrant development scene
  • I could use a new iPod anyway...
  • I can't think of any games compelling enough to sell me on the system; I can get awesome casual stuff on platforms I already own

PSP ($170)

  • Surprisingly, there are a lot of PSP games that I want to play: Persona, Class of Heroes, LittleBigPlanet, Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy VII...
  • Sony's going all-downloads for the PSP, which appeals to me
  • Almost cheap enough to be in the "buy on a whim" category
  • Sony's actively hostile to the homebrew scene
  • Do I really need another portable gaming device? Hmm.

[Poll #1414528]

Date: 2009-06-11 11:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] fridgemagnet.livejournal.com
By far, and by a ridiculous degree, the majority of games I play are on my Touch. Apart from that I play Fallout on the PC sometimes and, well, that is pretty much it.

I haven't turned on my DS in months actually. I expect my Animal Crossing town is a _mess_.

Date: 2009-06-11 11:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kvance.livejournal.com
I'd also like to play some PSP games at some point. I'd have never even picked up a DS if not for its quirky components, so I'm still lacking motivation there.

Not looking forward to when I'll eventually have to get a 360 or PS3 to play FFXIII.

Date: 2009-06-12 12:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] casey.livejournal.com
I'm going to write way more than you! Sorry!

Seems pointless with the 360. Very few games I can't play on Xbox Live and although I prefer keyboard and mouse I more prefer spending time with my friends and relaxing on the couch in my living room. The *only* thing I want Windows for these days is to play the handful of indie games that come out that don't have Mac versions, but there's always Crossover and Boot Camp for that. Inconvenient but possible.

This is basically where I'm getting to play all of the mass-market third-party games that I wish I could just have on my Nintendo system in addition to the Nintendo first party games, which are the main reason I have a console. That said, I've been enjoying this system and the fact that games drop in price relatively quickly is really nice-- if you are just moderately interested in first person shooters, you can play most of them for ~$20-30 just 6 months after they come out. The used stock is huge because the kind of teenagers playing these games tend to make lots of quick uninformed purchases and then sell them back to stores for trade-in credit. Netflix is nice, Facebook support (I'm kind of embarassed to say) looks kind of neat, and in general I like where they're going with the concept of the kind of "applications" they put on their console. XBLA is also full of GREAT stuff.

I don't have much experience with it. It looks like PSN has a pretty decent library of interesting, ambitious titles but the disc-based full-price stuff seems lacking, which makes the higher price seem silly. I feel like I might have to buy one of these eventually, though, which makes me kind of angry in an irrational way. Still, I think I'll wait until it's ancient and I can pick it up for cheap along with a decade's worth of games whose quality has been hashed and rehashed on the internet so I can pick and choose the winners easily.

iPod Touch:
The only game I've played for more than a week on my iPhone is Drop7, which is great but overall the games are quick obsessions and then you get bored with them. The actual number of games worth buying is pretty slim, IMO. If you do want to get it (the apps can be pretty cool, aside from the games), you might want to wait until Apple's had their annual iPod event in the fall since it may get the faster processor/more RAM of the 3GS and it may gain a camera or something else nifty like that.

I bought one because I thought I would use it to play all of those great strategy games (FFT, Wild Arms XF, Jeanne D'Arc, Disgaea) but for whatever reason I never pick it up when I'm headed for the door. The screen is beautiful, though, and the download-only thing is really cool. If you do want to get this, you might want to wait 6 months and see if Sony sees how ridiculous it is that they're charging $250 for the PSP Go since if I had my druthers I'd rather have that form factor but paying so much for it when the only improvement is a different case design and a lack of wasted parts with the UMD drive is completely ridiculous.

I'm going to go ahead and just vote for 360, but honestly I'm sure you could find a reason to be happy with pretty much any of these. I guess it's more about how much you want to spend.

Date: 2009-06-15 12:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] myth.livejournal.com
This is really lucid---thanks.

The 360 has taken a commanding lead in the poll here, and I'm getting sick of not being able to play any of the non-Nintendo triple-A releases, so I'll probably get one of those. ...eventually. Maybe around the holidays. I should finish off all the Wii games I have first.

I have Atlus to blame for my PSP-yen: I've become such a fanboy that Persona is practically a system seller. LBP is icing on the cake, and the fact that Sony's taking downloadables seriously (finally!) suggests that there will consistently be new content that I'm interested in. My commute is no longer all that video-game friendly (only about 25 minutes on a crowded subway, usually standing up) so I'd probably just be playing it at home.

The PSP Go is crazy expensive, and honestly it looks really unergonomic. I'll probably pick up the 3000 when Persona comes out (birthday present!).

Date: 2009-06-12 01:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] faepuck.livejournal.com
Decent gaming PCs actually aren't as expensive as they used to be. Indie stuff is always nice, and certain shooters play much better on the PC.

The 360 is basically the go-to system for a lot of folks. The games are nice, and you can get decent stuff like Crackdown and Dead Rising for cheap by now. It also has solid online features with party chat, Netflix, and soon Last.fm support. The best exclusives on it are Lost Odyssey, and maybe Halo.

The PS3 has a lot of the same games as 360 these days. The best stuff on it is definitely the PSN offerings, tho. Flower, Noby Noby Boy, Pixeljunk Eden & Monsters, Everyday Shooter, with Fat Princess and Pixeljunk Shooter in the future. They're not reason enough to get the system, but they are quite nice. You can also install Linux on the PS3 pretty easily and upgrade the HDD with any laptop drive. Oh, and you can play inFamous and Valkyria Chronicles.

The PSP is actually a pretty nice system, especially for homebrew, as long as you get a PSP-2000 or before. Sony's desperate attempts to improve on the PSP have been to combat the emulation and unlocking of the first two models, since, once they're unlocked, they pretty much stay that way. It's a great 3D system with some nice games (Castlevania, FFT, Valkyria Chronicles, Loco Roco, DJ Max, Rock Band Unplugged, and soon Persona 1), but I have to admit I don't play it nearly as much as my DS.

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