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Watch Out For Launch Goggles

Posted on November 3, 2013 AT 04:23pm

The world is just two and three weeks away from being rocked by the launch of new home consoles and I’m already getting excited. I have my console squared away, but the real tricky parts are the games. Sure, it seems like an easy task picking out awesome new games for your brand new system, but I’m here to tell you that there is a very easy trap to fall into. With all the sheen of your advanced new console, it’s easy to go overboard and buy games you might not otherwise. I call this phenomenon Launch Goggles, but there are different kinds, so pull up and chair and heed my words of warning.

Does that launch title look awesome? Does it really? When the buzz about a new console reaches the highest heights any game you can play on that new system looks like a AAA title. While, every now and again, there are some truly great games in a system launch, much more often you’re going to find some stinkers in the mix. This version of Launch Goggles has even gotten me a few times with games like Pilotwings Resort for the 3DS and Ridge Racer DS for the Nintendo DS. Okay fine, these game might not be terrible, but under normal circumstances I would have saved my hard-earned cash for some more polished titles. A good trick for combating this urge is to ask yourself if you would’ve bought this game if it were the middle of the console generation.

Most launches have a pretty dire shortage of new games to play. One danger you might face is a common trap easy to fall into: genre-reaching. If you find yourself considering a game in a genre you don’t typically care for as much, think really hard before you take the plunge. Are you buying it because you are genuinely interested in the game or does that next-gen trailer just make it look too pretty to pass up? My recommendation for these game is to hold off and try to find a demo or borrow a copy from a friend so you can get a better idea of whether you’ll like it.

The time when new consoles are coming out is a tricky time for developers. Do they put their work into a new game exclusively for the next-gen consoles or build one that’ll work across all devices? This, at the same time, put gamers in the difficult position of picking the platform on which to get these games. Keep a close eye on these games because while some of them have had enough time to be ported up, others likely have not and may not be much different than their previous-generation versions. It happened on the Xbox 360 with Gun and their could be another cross-gen title this year that leans more towards last-gen. It’s usually a safe bet to pick one of these up for your next-gen console if you were planning to get it anyway, so preorder away for these.

You know what? It’s fun when a new console comes out. Sometimes this increased hype can actually make games you wouldn’t like otherwise more fun. Have a launch party and get a bunch of people in on the action, because the extra excitement in the room is a great way to boost the fun you’ll have with your new system. Whether you’ll be getting a PS4 or an Xbox One in a few weeks, make sure to have fun with it!

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