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The 4K Resolution Revolution and Sony's Master Plan for World Domination

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4K: The Resolution Revolution

By now most people have at least heard of 4K, even if it was just the fact that The Hobbit was shot in 4K. This new resolution is roughly 4x greater than our current standard, or HD. Coming in at 3840 × 2160, why is this change so important? Isn’t 1920 x 1080 good enough at this point? There is so much more to 4K than just a simple resolution change and this change has the potential to bring about massive shifts in the entertainment world in ways most people cannot even imagine. Let’s break it down.

Must. Have. New iPhone.

Technology is at an all time high point in terms of turnover rates. Every year most of our technology is completely outdated and replaced with something new. People flock in droves to have the latest tech and have the shiniest thingamajigit. There are a couple things that are the basis of our technology though and stay around for awhile. Certain programs, processors, and chips become the standard on which all of the other new technology is built. 4K is both something that will define the next set of technological advancements and be the next shiniest toy for the ravenous consumers to purchase. It is currently a very high end luxury item without much practical purpose, but that is changing fast. 4K televisions alone are less than half the price they used to be and soon they will be affordable for the regular consumer. People eat up new tech, just look at the massive lines for the latest phone. They can’t get enough of having the next big thing. It is an endless cycle they are doomed to repeat until they die, but they don’t care, it makes them happy for a few days. Because of this hunger for technology, consumers are prepped and ready to jump at the next greatest thing. Introducing 4K! It’s bigger, faster, brighter and generally more awesome than HDTVs. The only thing holding it back is a practical application. Enter Sony and it’s master plan of entertainment domination from 2015-2020.

Sony’s Master Plan of Entertainment Domination From 2015-2020

The year 2015 is actually a rather generous number and if it happened in 2014, it really wouldn’t surprise me at all. Here’s the deal: Sony has it’s fingers in everyone’s pies when it comes to 4K and they basically have almost no competition right now. Sony is the first mover in a various number of industries when it comes to 4K. The scale of the areas Sony can take charge in the entertainment industry of is completely mesmerizing. They have a movie production company, television show production company, video game company, television company, and surround sound company just to name a few and they are all going 4K (well, except the sound…that would be interesting though). What happens when a single company leads the charge into a new format in every single one of these fields? Complete domination. Let’s break it down.

Ye Old Moving Pictures

4K movies are already a thing and Sony is testing the waters with some big name movies with it. Currently it is a bit of a hassle though since it is expensive and not every movie theater has 4K projectors yet and no one really owns a 4K TV yet, so the marketability is not yet justifying the cost. That’s where Black Magic comes in. No, not conjuring demons to resurrect loved ones or do your chores for you (I am fairly certain that Mickey Mouse is a Satanist for conjuring demon mops), the video camera. The 4K Black Magic camera will be out without the next 6 months and it’s kind of a big deal. Meet the RED killer: it’s tiny, light, shoots in 4K, and is one of the cheapest cameras on the market. It also can use all of the same lenses current filmmakers already have. The Black Magic is going to be THE camera to have and every indie filmmaker is going to have one. Now, Hollywood doesn’t want their products to have less quality than you’re average Joe with two grande so they will inevitably be forced to make the switch full force. This is going to be a rather massive hit for the movie theater companies and so production studios are going to have to put down some serious coin to invest in new projection equipment and when Hollywood invests in something, it never lets go. Ever. When this revolution happens, what company has already been producing 4K movies and already has all the gear and crews with experience? Sony of course! For a short amount of time there will be a massive spike in sales of Sony movies while the rest of the studios catch up and what will they do with that money? Invest it in their television studios of course! TV shows will start being offered in 4K as well as obviously HD. Remember when the big crossover from SD to HD happened a few years ago? Same thing basically. With TV shows being offered in 4K, that will lead to…drum roll please…a use for 4K TVs!

Entertainment Overload!

Currently Sony is basically the only kid on the block with some serious investment in the 4K. A few other rival companies are dabbling here and there, but Sony has the best looking and cheapest models around for miles and they are sitting in warehouses, just waiting for the time is right for them to be bought. In the meantime, there is this adorable little console war going on between Microsoft and Sony. There’s some massive debate over which is the better console (which I have covered extensively in previous posts). Irregardless of which console has better games or sells more the first year, Sony has already won the war. They have something that Microsoft and Nintendo are currently lacking: A shining reputation. At E3, Sony reps came on stage and basically we crowned them prom king of the gaming world. Microsoft suffered from a massive PR nightmare when they tried to force gamers to do things they didn’t want to, following it up by giving their customers the finger. Nintendo didn’t even appear at E3 at all and has been basically refusing to compete in the console war at all. How is this relevant to 4K? Well, like their televisions, Sony’s gaming console is the cheapest out of it’s competition (sorry Nintendo, you really aren’t competition this go around). The Playstation 4 does not currently work with 4K, but interviews with the Sony crew has shown that it is something they are open to implementing at a later date…say, maybe 2015. The Xbox One has no clue what 4K even is really and will never support it most likely. Microsoft simply doesn’t have the background to pull the photo finish the Sony is looking to pull. With it’s fingers in everybody’s 4K pie, Sony will switch to 4K, leaving the Xbox One still on HD. With everyone upgrading their televisions to 4K, HD will begin to look like complete garbage and people will stop buying Xbox Ones and turn to the company that has “always” loved and understood gamers (well, at least starting about 6 months ago): Sony. Microsoft basically tied their own noose when they had the nerd rage of the hardcore gamers turned against them and turned Sony into the shining city on a hill. In reality Sony had its own massive PR nightmares with the PS3, but that is long, long forgotten by now. Gamers are kind of like gerbils, they have short memories, freak out when people touch them, and think running in place is real exercise…I’m looking at you Wii Fit.

It’s the Little Things

When a massive change is brewing, little things begin to happen that foreshadow its coming. The most notable little thing that has happened recently was the release of HDMI 2.0, officially making it possible to connect 4K televisions and 4K media devices. Also recently both Youtube and Vimeo began officially supporting 4K formats on their sites. Before that happened, Sony announced a 4K media box that features many popular movies by Sony Pictures, all in 4K. Oddly enough, something as small as the HDMI 2.0 was something holding back the tide of the 4K revolution, but no longer. There are rumors flying around like mad that Sony is going to be releasing an online TV service, which could be HUGE and essentially make cable boxes dinosaurs. The next challenge that is going to be faced is the fact that there is no way that 4K videos will be able to be streamed on our current internet system. Oh, what’s that? A new player has been partnering with internet companies to improve internet on a global scale? It can’t be Sony, that would be…oh wait, it’s Sony. Originally meant to create higher functionality for the Playstation Network in various European countries, Sony has begun to delve into the internet business which means that if they had the motivation to, they could begin building a framework for 4K streaming. Is your mind blown yet?

The Skinny on the Great Console Wars of 2013 Part 3: Sony

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The Enemy of My Enemy May Be My Friend, But My Actual Friend Gets Nicer Christmas Cards

There’s been a lot of information flying around about the Big Three since the beginning of the year and the rumor mill has been churning for years. Now that we actually KNOW what Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony are bringing / brought to the table this year, it’s time for some serious comparisons with no fanboyisms. I have owned consoles from all 3 of these companies and thoroughly enjoyed games from all of them. This is just how I see the current state of things as I’ve watched these three companies battle for support and sales. I’m going to focus on one at a time as I have a lot to say on each of them.


"We’re Really, Really Sorry About the PS3"

Last generation, the PS3 was most certainly not a fan favorite and was often times grouped in with Nintendo as Microsoft heralded the charge to gamer paradise. They got a lot of flack from gamers about things such as the insane sticker price at launch to various hardware issues and then the whole Anonymous hacking debacle. Suffice it to say, Sony was beaten down pretty hard last gen, and a lot of it wasn’t even their fault. Sometimes things just go terribly wrong and need to be set back on course. During this time, however, Sony learned to listen to their community and found out the hard way that gamers are none too forgiving if you don’t do something right the first time. What they have learned can be clearly seen in the PS4 as it is an embodiment of everything gamers have been asking for. By listening to the flack they got from the PS3, they managed to present the perfect apology to their fans for letting them down last gen. Whether the console really is all it is cracked up to be is still yet to be seen, but gamers everywhere remain hopeful.

Charging into Battle

One of the main areas where Microsoft and Sony differ is that Microsoft is like Commodus from Gladiator (2000) and Sony is like Maximus. Commodus sends troops into battle, but doesn’t step onto the field himself and Maximus is in the trenches with his men. Microsoft thinks it can rule over the gamers and send them off from E3 with a whole new way of thinking just because they said so. Sony wanted to join the gamers on a journey together in which they figure out how to make the relationship between publisher and consumer work. Sony is a leader and Microsoft is an Emperor. Last time I checked, most people in the free world do not take too kindly to tyrants. Sony has managed to lead the gamers to the world they were hoping for, but believed to be struck down by Microsoft. Fortunately in this analogy Sony’s family has not been brutally murdered and it has not been cast in a ring to kill people. Although that would have made a very entertaining E3.

The Enemy of my Enemy

To be perfectly honest, one of the biggest draws gamers have to the PS4 is simply that it is NOT the Xbox One. This is a very interesting marketing strategy that Microsoft can really only blame themselves for letting Sony get away with. If there was a Presidential race and somehow the final two were Hitler and a complete and total stranger, everyone would vote for the random guy because they simply didn’t want Hitler. Not that I’m calling Microsoft Hitler or anything…although they did essentially try and round up all the used games (and companies willing to harbor used games such as Gamestop) and toss them all in a landfill…Sony is a bit drunk with power though at this point since they know they won a major battle at E3. As long as they basically make no new announcements to disrupt the status quo, they should be lined up for a sure fire win.

The Indie Sector

Something that both Nintendo and Microsoft basically completely overlooked with their consoles was the indie developer. Indie games are becoming more and more popular, as are indie movies (and I’m not referring to the ones with all the long winded dance numbers and cheesy singing). Video games are getting easier to make and colleges have started to teach it as a major, there are even universities just for making video games now. With this progression comes a ton of new people with the know how and their own specific vision. These people start up their own little companies, as do all of the people who learned how to do it off the internet (learning legitimate skills from the internet has also become much more popular in recent years). In the next 10 years, there is going to be a massive boom of indie developers and games. Who took the temperature of the market and saw this coming? Sony. Who made it one of their top 10 main focuses at their conference? Sony. Quite simply, Sony’s console was made for developers, specially indie developers, to design games for. They have put down real roots in the indie world and have begun to establish themselves, and this is going to pay off in the long run. This is also one of the many reasons why the PS4 will last the full generation cycle, but the Wii U and X1 most certainly will not.

Show Me the Money!

Let’s get real right now, there is one factor that has strongly helped determine who wins each generation and that is cost. If your console works properly, has adequate game support, has hardware at least on par for the generation, and costs less, you win. This is how Sony won generation 5 and generation 6 of the console wars and what they completely forgot about with the PS3. This is how Microsoft nabbed the generation 7 win out from under them and how Sony is going to win back the title. All a console has to do in game releases, hardware, and features is be mediocre. Same as everyone else and completely not unique at all. If they do this and find a way to release their console cheaper, the battle is won right there. The PS4 is basically the same as the Xbox One, it even looks the same. Same hardware, same number of exclusives, same features. There’s some slight differences and then the whole indie game thing and whatnot making it slightly better than the X1 and then there’s the whole policy differences thing, but at their absolute core, they are basically the same. The PS4 is a whole $100 cheaper though, therefore it WILL win this console war beyond a shadow of a doubt. Upon release of the two, the casual gamer won’t want to spend as much and the hardcore gamer knows enough about Sony and Microsoft that he will pick Sony. If Sony can lock down the vast majority of sales on launch and the first quarter, Microsoft will bleed customers until it dies. After the first quarter, if most of your friends own a PS4 instead of an X1 and it’s a whole $100 cheaper, you are buying a PS4. There really is no decision at that point.

The Skinny on the Great Console Wars of 2013 Part 2: Microsoft

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Chumming the Waters of Microsoft's Defeat

There’s been a lot of information flying around about the Big Three since the beginning of the year and the rumor mill has been churning for years. Now that we actually KNOW what Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony are bringing / brought to the table this year, it’s time for some serious comparisons with no fanboyisms. I have owned consoles from all 3 of these companies and thoroughly enjoyed games from all of them. This is just how I see the current state of things as I’ve watched these three companies battle for support and sales. I’m going to focus on one at a time as I have a lot to say on each of them.


PR Nightmare

Since the beginning of the year Microsoft has been getting some seriously bad PR about their new console. This is not a new thing for any of the major companies and so them handling it quickly and accurately should have been the first thing to be read in the news after each of the horrific rumors. Instead, Microsoft chose to let the rumors sit for months and let the gamer rage build. Gamer rage is something that each company has experienced at one point, most recently before this with the numerous PS3 debacles and it isn’t a pretty thing. E3 rolls around and everyone thinks to themselves, okay so Microsoft was silent when these horrific rumors were brought to light, they must just be waiting until E3 to set everyone straight. Wrong, all of the rumors were true and the entire gaming community was horrified. During the conference, numerous Microsoft leaders issued various statements and responses to the gamer rage, nearly all to the effect of the coined phrase “deal with it”. Let the internet trolling and meming begin. Later, they reversed these policies and packaging details after Sony came out and completely obliterated them and even laughed at them. They were forced into a corner and had to do a complete 180 and the result was much more acceptable, but the question still stands: will they try and pull something like this again?

Second Son Syndrome

Let me first explain my metaphor of the second son: there are two sons, one older and one younger. The oldest son makes some mistakes and gets in the dog house with his parents here and there and the youngest son learns from him and doesn’t make the same mistakes. The oldest son is always playing catch up with the youngest and he keeps getting angry at his brother and believes that he thinks he is so perfect and is the favorite child. The oldest begins to feel like a second rate son. The youngest son is just glad of the older brother and his mistakes because it shows him what not to do and his parents genuinely do find him easier to raise because there is less they have to teach him. Microsoft is the older brother, Sony the younger, and gamers the parents in this scenario. Microsoft keeps playing catch up with Sony because they screw up and Sony comes in and gives the correct answer and then they are forced to go back and change their answer. The question here is, would you rather side with a company who learns from the mistakes of others or is constantly making the wrong choices and having to play catch up with the competition? Microsoft needs to step up its game. It has changed its tune on nearly every single item that it originally had planned from the massive used games fail to even including a headset in the box and is desperately floundering around in the water trying to stay in the game. It’s extremely pathetic to watch and I have lost any and all respect for the company.

The Pulse of an Alien

With all of these PR nightmares and playing catch up with Sony, it should really make the consumer stop and think about Microsoft’s mindset. Sony clearly has a finger on the pulse of the gaming community and know what they want. Microsoft, on the other hand, has their finger on the pulse of an alien and keep thinking the gaming community will give them a gold star for making all of these decisions that would make no sense if they listened to the community. While it may be true that Microsoft has been slowly being forced back to sanity, the fact that they no longer have a clue what their audience wants is extremely disturbing.

The Tyrant

Microsoft’s rigid initial belief that they were in charge of the market instead of the public and that gamers would have to conform to their way of thinking if they forced them to is a bit of a scary one. They never polled their fans to see if the changes they wanted to implement found favor with the public, they just did them and told everyone else to deal with it. The ONLY reason they reversed anything was because they feared losing sales, not because they actually came to understand the public’s point of view. As soon as they are allowed to, they absolutely will attempt a new Microsoft regime and anyone unfortunate enough to own an Xbox One will suffer underneath it when that day comes.

Xbox One: The First Racist Console

Okay, okay, so it is more of a regional issue than race, but the title sounded pretty scary. A few months ago, Microsoft announced that the X1 would not be available in many, many countries and would not support online play even if gamers bought the console elsewhere and brought it home. In June, they announced that it would be available in 21 countries, which was a big step up for them. Months later, they dropped the online only part of their plan, so things were looking up for some of the smaller countries. Until now. Microsoft announced August 14th that the console would not even be shipping to major countries such as Russia, Sweden, Norway, and Switzerland until “sometime” in 2014, a minimum of 2 months after the initial release. Why is this? Basically their excuse was they haven’t integrated certain languages and region codes into the system yet. Want to guess why this is? The same reason that only 10 Xbox One’s current exist in the universe right now. They keep changing their flipping minds about what exactly is going inside their little plastic black box. With all of the changes and policy reversals happening, the hardware designers can’t keep up and they are getting massively delayed. This announcement just severely crippled them because gamers in these countries who were going to get the X1 this holiday season, now literally HAVE to buy a PS4 instead. Microsoft just lost nearly all of their sales in 8 whole countries (many of which develop games for them by the way). What’s icing on the cake (the cake is a lie) is that gamers in these countries pre-ordered the X1 already. What do they get for this massive delay? A “Call us” and an unspecified game for free with the console (most likely the North Eastern Europe Screw Over 5000 game. I love that one). Nowhere in their announcement did they even apologize for the delay, they simply state that it is “regrettable” for THEM.

Cost and Benefit ?

Microsoft’s console costs a whopping $100 (+tax) more than Sony’s PS4. For that much extra, there must be something awesome about it, right? Wrong. The specs of the PS4 and Xbox One are nearly identical. The PS4 has slightly better RAM and the X1 recently upgraded its graphics card. Neither of these things make a difference though really. The reason for the cost boost is the Kinect and, unlike the PS Move, it is required and comes with every Xbox One. If one were to buy a PS4 with PS Move it would cost roughly the same as the Xbox One (still less though), but not everyone wants a motion sensor. A large percentage of the community doesn’t actually. Did Microsoft give a crap? Not even in the slightest. Complaints about the original Kinect can be found everywhere and very few people thought it was worth the money, but Microsoft refuses to let go of their bone because they think it is the future of all gaming, which is simply not true. Oculus Rift is, if anything.

The Skinny on the Great Console Wars of 2013: Nintendo


How Far the Mighty Have Fallen


Theres been a lot of information flying around about the Big Three since the beginning of the year and the rumor mill has been churning for years. Now that we actually KNOW what Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony are bringing / brought to the table this year, its time for some serious comparisons with no fanboyisms. I have owned consoles from all 3 of these companies and thoroughly enjoyed games from all of them. This is just how I see the current state of things as Ive watched these three companies battle for support and sales. Im going to focus on one at a time as I have a lot to say on each of them.


Although technically released at the end of 2012, the WiiU is still in this generation of consoles whether it wants to be or not. Nintendo sought to make their console to be able to play with the big boys and appeal to hardcore gamers.

Third Party Support

The concept of the tablet controller was to be a useful utility for said gamers and there was an increased line up of FPS games for the Wii U. The only problem is that after the initial set of hardcore games, the quantity started to die down a bit as 3rd party publishers started to jump ship when they realized they had to figure out a way to use the tablet and not just port the game over from a different console or PC version. The controller was not suited for FPS play and the graphics were still only partially HD and not full HD. Overall, the hardware is kind of a pathetic waste of time and barely competes even with the Xbox 360 or PS3, the PREVIOUS gen of its competitors, making it less desirable to develop for. I mean who wants their game to run on anything but optimal setting? They started off strong with good 3rd party support, but began to lose it when companies left to develop launch games for the PS4 and Xbox One. With massive losses occurring in their 3rd party division, they really needed to start releasing some of their core games, which lets be honest, are the only reason anyone buy a Nintendo product anyway.

The 3DS Leech

Nintendo failed to make many major releases of first party games in the first quarter and averages about only 1 good selling game a month. Gamers are still waiting on Super Smash Bros., Mario Kart, and Zelda games that probably will not be out for months or years. They continue to release games for the 3DS instead of for the WiiU, much to the annoyance of those who bought the WiiU. Most people still have no reason to buy the WiiU seeing as Nintendo does not seem to care a lot about it and is focusing on its handheld market. The new Luigis Mansion game that clearly should have been a console game was released for 3DS and both the WiiU and 3DS continue to simply get new versions 1st party core games over and over again instead of there being a new entry into the series. There have been so many Zelda HD games, it amazes me they can still keep releasing them and not make a new one already. Nintendo also has a bit of a problem right at its core that needs to be addressed.

Party Gaming

The tablet screen is great and the Wii U offers 4 player splitscreen on many of its titles, which is something that is completely lost from Sony and Microsoft practically. In-room multiplayer is something that seriously need to strike a comeback in the game and Nintendo is doing a decent job with that.Theres some fun multiplayer games out for the Wii U like New Super Mario Bros. U (which is a pathetically lazy title) and Nintendoland and all that, but these games are essentially just a bunch of entertaining minigames put together. Great for a living room full of guests, but not much for the single player gamer.

1 Dimensional Gameplay

While their 1st party games can be fun, they are clearly very 1 dimensional. Yes, I mean 1 dimensional and not even 2 dimensional. The characters rarely speak unless they are shouting their own name, there is barely any plot line whatsoever (and what plot there is has the exact same structure as the previous 5 games), their game mechanics rarely get updated or changed, and there is quite simply an extremely minimal story. There is no investment in a game with no story and no reason to keep it around. What other game company actually gets away with making the same game over and over with mute characters, no story, and bad graphics? Why do the gamers let them get away with it? In a word


Nintendo is kept alive by the games they USED to make, but no longer do. In an age where their current model of thinking made sense, their system would be flawless, but that was 20-30 years ago now. One of the leaders of Nintendo said recently that they make games and NOT art, which is extremely clear by the way they do business and is completely stone age thinking in this industry. They think they can still make the same arcade game every year and that is an acceptable game. Arcade games dont do anything but waste quarters and provide a frustrating and linear experience, much like Nintendo games. Nintendo simply doesnt know how to make this generation of games and once the PS4 and Xbox One come out, they will sink like a rock. They have so much potential that they absolutely refuse to tap into. They have some of the most beloved characters in video game history and they keep them benched and make them mute. The one way Nintendo can bounce back is if they release their all star cast and invest in their characters and make a rich experience for gamers. Imagine a Zelda game that makes you feel like you do in The Last of Us or a Mario game that makes you stop and think like in the indie hit Braid. So much potential is left untapped and will remain that way until new management takes over.
Nintendo needs to be forced to change and stop being coddled by gamers who think that they might figure it out and change their system one day. Maybe next year theyll get it, gamers say as they buy the Zelda HD Platinum Extended Version 2.7. Its pretty simple, people keep feeding them money for doing a crappy job, and theyre going to keep doing a crappy job. Yes, the games remind you of your childhood, we get it. Easy Cheese reminds me of my childhood, but that doesnt make it any less garbage. We need to hold Nintendo to the standards of the rest of the industry, even if they dont need to follow all of the same rules. They have always done their own thing, but being independent doesnt mean we should let them have subpar games year after year. STOP BUYING THEM and then they will learn.

The Wii Leech

I also just found out that Nintendo is actually STILL making regular Wii games and will be for quite some time. And they wonder why no one wants to buy a WiiU? They need to completely stop making games for the Wii, sad as it is for me to say, being a Wii owner and not a WiiU owner, otherwise theyre short changing themselves. Yes, they are technically making the same dollar either way, but since they arent investing in the WiiU, no one is going to buy it and when they DO stop making Wii games, the WiiU wont have any new games and the Wii wont have any new games. Then where will they be?