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PS3: For Both Casual And Hardcore Gamers?

With the console wars raging, it's easy to find a thousand different opinions assaulting the Internet, but one recently caught our eye: it centers on the idea that the PlayStation 3 is now the "Casual Gamer's Concept Of Choice." You can read the full article here, and we have something to add:

As you can see, the author lists six reasons why the PS3 is the best option for casual gamers. The loss of Nintendo's control over Wii developers, the PS3's inclusion of Blu-Ray and free online, "comparable choices for casual gamers on PSN," PlayStation Home is "far more than a gimmick," and of course, a crazy strong 2008 software lineup. Now, we certainly agree, but as we all know, software ultimately sells a piece of gaming hardware (even though more features are certainly available this generation). Furthermore, it all depends on how you define the "casual" gamer; is it someone who simply wants the practical and simple in regards to their hobby, or is it just someone who plays a few sports or music games with friends now and again? In focusing on the PS3 software, we'd like to point out something that may once again become evident in this new generation: a Sony console will be the prime target for hardcore gamers.

Last generation, the PS2 was essentially the only console that would offer niche titles like JRPGs, strat/RPGs, more obscure adventure and puzzle titles, etc. Only the hardcore would typically buy something like one of the Shin Megami Tensei titles, for instance. Now, in looking at the Xbox lineup, we saw plenty of FPS, sports and action, but "niche" titles weren't exactly common. Thus, in simply examining the software alone, the Xbox was the quintessential "casual" console. The PS2 has much of the same, of course, which is probably why the system appealed to more people (120 million+ ended up buying the thing). Bottom line? The games hardcore gamers would buy, we found most of them on the PS2. The GameCube had a few here and there, but the overall lack of software in general immediately dropped it out of the running, as far as we're concerned.

So perhaps we should be looking at the software lineups to determine which system is the ultimate "casual gamer's" console this generation. If we do, it's a bit closer, isn't it? But we still find that many potentially niche titles that only hardcore gamers will touch might be exclusive to the PS3. We will see more on the 360 and Wii, but when the smoke clears, we believe more of those great yet under-appreciated games will end up as PS3 exclusives. If this is the case, we'll agree that it has some no-brainer features that appeal to the casual gamer, but at the same time, it shouldn't be dismissed by the hardcore. That'd be a crucial mistake, in our estimation.

3/9/2008 Ben Dutka

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Comments (9 posts)

Mystearica
Monday, March 10, 2008 @ 8:13:06 AM
Reply

You know - I agree! Especially about Shin Megami Tensei!! And the fact is, most of the 360 line-up are just FPSes really... I mean look at their top titles all first person shooters - talk about variety!

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Sol
Thursday, March 13, 2008 @ 12:37:24 AM

Yeah...for a system to work it needs games with good gameplay and great stories. It's one of the reasons I want one.(sighs) Too bad I can't seem to get enough money to get the still expensive PS3. Does anyone know when and if there will be another price drop.

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Warukyure [Power User]
Monday, March 10, 2008 @ 9:31:00 AM
Reply

@Mystearica:

Ya know, most of the top selling games for the PS3 in North America are also FPSs

On the topic, I totally bought a PS3 for niche games and RPGs. And I can't wait till Disgaea 3 comes out. It's games like that that make me appreciate the PS3s broad spectrum of games available (Well not just PS3 but all sony consoles)

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danr
Monday, March 10, 2008 @ 10:03:23 AM
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I'm only a "casual" gamer, I've had my ps3 since may last year, yet I have only got 2 games.

But, I love my music, so I upgraded the HDD (to 200gig) and use the ps3 to store and play my music :)

Its always switched on, playing music. I hardly ever play games. Altho that might change with GTA IV :D

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Aftab
Monday, March 10, 2008 @ 10:50:26 AM
Reply

I agree with the article. But I think ps2's success is due to that it won the larger share of both casual and hardcore gamers, here, and overseas... in some cases, by a long shot, and in others, no so much. For example it is clear that ms won a large portion of specifically the casual base just by looking at the number of Halo titles sold. So what made the difference: the commitment to support over the long haul. Xbox had great titles, and arguably better, but just couldn't keep the pace

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ThePoetRazel
Monday, March 10, 2008 @ 5:40:00 PM
Reply

Due to the broad range of features that new consoles have i don't think we can say "it's all about the games" anymore.
My PS3 plays (and upscales) DVDs, Blu-Ray, CDs and a range of media files such as pictures, movies and music from a range of sources such as the built-in HDD, external HDDs/Flash/SD/Memory Sticks or Media Servers. Furthermore, it has an internet browser, email messaging and voice and cam chat.
These are just some of the current features of the PS3 outside of gaming.
Now, if you're the kind of person who just plays a game now and again or someone who loves gaming til you're hands bleed, don't those other features add a hell of a lot more into the bargain?
Maybe the PS3 can even bring more people into the world of gaming, if people buy it for the Blu-ray and these other features.

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Bugzbunny109
Monday, March 10, 2008 @ 6:02:07 PM

true.. Razel42

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PaiNT_kinG
Tuesday, March 11, 2008 @ 12:42:28 AM
Reply

casual u gots to be kidding me,the wii is casual,lmao

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Geosondaman
Wednesday, March 12, 2008 @ 2:45:12 PM
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I think PS3 is the platform that gets the more obscure titles such as like Shadow of the Colossus, ICO, etc. These are titles that are overlooked by most gamers, hardcore or casual. I know very little people that have played those two games. Team ICO is working on a secret title, possibly two titles, for the PS3 and they're hiring PS3 programmers I believe for the projects. Really looking forward to these games, but these games are hardly system sellers as they are not very popular. What PS3 truly needs right now is big blockbuster titles that will sell systems.

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