The Revolution Will Not Be Televised...

...in HD.

I'm not sure what entirely to think of Nintendo's move to not support HDTV. Amid the mudslinging Sony and Microsoft are doing back and forth about the awesome HD graphics they'll be able to do, it looks like Nintendo is making a bad move. But really, that's just if you buy into the "HD Era".

There were all sorts of statistics being thrown around and it was all very stupid. People cited that currently 10% of people in America own an HD TV. Honestly, that's not a whole lot of people compared to the 90% who don't. We don't even have a guarantee that the whole of the 10% will want to play video games. Still, it is cited that 25% of all TVs sold in the US are HD TVs. That's great, but that means for every one HD TV sold there are another three non-HD TVs being taken off the shelf too. How much 25% affects the % of people who own a HD TV depends on the population and number of TVs sold. If a bajillion TVs are being sold, then HD TV would permeate homes by next tuesday. But if sales are in the tens of thousands, it could take a while.

Just another example of why everyone should think about their statistics and maybe take a course in it.

In any case, I'm not going to vilify Microsoft or Sony for supporting HD. I'll even argue that doing that is exactly what they both should do. Especially now that they've announced their doing it, and have laid down so much hype about it (turning back would be fatal). However, Nintendo's path is also exactly what it should do.

The thing to consider is that just because Nintendo doesn't support HD doesn't mean that the Revolution's graphics will be horrible. In fact, the Revolution's graphics will very likely be just as good as the PS3's and the Xbox 360's, on any regular television. It's only when playing on an HD TV that there'll be a benefit to Sony and Microsoft's forcing all titles being made for their consoles to be in 720p or 1080i HD resolutions.

By the time the Revolution's time has come and still another generation of consoles is coming, HD TV will prevalent enough to be worthwhile to support. Until then Nintendo will move along without it, and have a console that is cheaper, cheaper to develop for, and more profitable.

It'll be cheaper because hardware that doesn't support HD is cheaper. It'll be cheaper to develop for because delopers won't have to worry about the extra work required to make the games stand up to HD, or at least in cross-platform games making sure the HD mode graphics work properly. And it'll be more profitable because of the previous two reasons.

However, the Revolution will still be criticized for the lack of HD support. But really, the GameCube was criticized for not supporting online play. If you think about it, Xbox Live only has just over a million players, which is hardly a significant portion of the gaming populace, or even just the populace. In fact, you can look at Nintendo's waiting out this past generation as a clever way to get the opther companies to pioneer a technology for them. In any case, I'd have criticism the GameCube more for its lack of LAN playability, because that's what I see happening more than any online elements.

In any case, both LAN play and online will be prevalent with Nintendo's new console, and while that doesn't seem that impressive now that it's all been done by Microsoft and the Xbox, it isn't something to be ignored. Nintendo will likely take what was pioneered and make it better.

When the Revolution 2 comes out when the Revolution is old, it will do things with HD TV that will make Microsoft and Sony bang their heads against walls.

In the mean time, you should probably buy an Xbox 360 or PS3 if you have an HD TV. But otherwise the Revolution is perfectly fine.

No comments: