Tuesday, 28 October 2014

I Miss Quirky Peripherals

My post yesterday evening about rail shooters got me thinking about video game console peripherals and just how boring they have become in the modern age.  We have stuff like the Kinect, the PS4s pad thing but I only seem to ever come across people complaining about those.

I mean what the fuck happened to every console having a gun.  Back in the day, every motherfucker and it's dog had a goddamn gun in order to play all those arcade rail shooter ports.  The Wii kinda had a gun thing going on but that was nothing more than slotting your remote into a hunk of plastic.  I want shit like the Sega Saturn Predator back.  It was fucking heavy as shit, lit up when you fired it and it was fucking big.  You knew that when you got that motherfucker out the draw, shit was going to go down.

Back then, developers were always trying to do interesting shit with their systems and giving you interesting ways to play.  NiGHTS on the Saturn saw the release of a "3D" controller which looked kind of like an arcade stick and was designed to make playing that game a bit easier or something.  The Dreamcast had a fishing rod for use with Sega Bass Fishing but also worked with Soul Calibre so you could swing it around like a sword.  This resulted in getting smashed by someone with a controller but it was fun nonetheless.  Nintendo were famous for their weird fucking peripherals such as ROB the Robot for the NES and the Game Boy Transfer Pack back when Pokemon Stadium came out which blew peoples fucking minds back then

Sure, they were gimmicky and the number of compatible games was kind of low but the point is that a lot of the time they were fun to use.  I spent HOURS playing ports of rail shooters and HOURS with the fucking DC fishing rod just because it was a novel way to play.

With modern systems, a lot of the shit is built in or has been done before a long time ago and it worked better (Kinect and Eye Toy for example).  Things like touch screens were novel back when the DS was new but in 2014, a touch screen on a modern device is fucking standard.  The closest thing we have to a proper interesting peripheral is the Occulus Rift or any other VR headset thing.  That thing is pushing boundaries and giving people a chance to experience games in a way they never have before which is awesome.

It also makes the console a bit more interesting I think.  I'm constantly finding weird bits and bobs in the retro stores around Japan and sometimes I have no idea what the fuck they would ever be used for.  40 years from now when people are going around retro stores for PS3s or whatever, there isn't going to be anything all that interesting to find in a junk box because aside from the standard console/controller/cables/games there wasn't really much else to fuck about with.

I know it's mainly a problem with technology being what it is and the need for all this quirky bullshit being reduced to basically zero but I'm sure the creative minds in the games industry could come up with SOMETHING that would make me want to play their game based on the method of input alone like they did back then. 

Maybe one day.

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