It is a strange time to be a gamer, especially if you've been gaming since the 80s or 90s. There was a time when consoles were less complex. You did not have to update the software each week or worry about games being patched. Since gaming has expanded, new gamers subconsciously believe that gaming has always been patches and updates. In reality, however, it has not been and I hope it does not continue to be. Unfortunately, the fumbling and follies of these game developers, publishers and manufacturers are barreling down a road to a place most unfamiliar and frightening. Square Enix, a large Japanese third-party gaming development company and publisher, declared that the "Tomb Raider" reboot, developed by Crystal Dynamics, was a financial failure. The game sold 3.4 million copies, according to VG 24/7, but needed to sell five to ten million copies in order to make up costs, and the next generation of consoles are not yet available to consumers. Many people are excited for the next generation because of the eight-year life cycle of this current generation, which is a long life cycle for a gaming console. They are also excited about the promise of better graphics. What people don't understand is that better graphics means higher development fees, which may be passed down to consumers. How would you like to see a game priced as high as a neogeo cartridge, a gaming machine that was made to rival arcade graphics back when arcades were a big deal. Would you really like to pay for a $100 to $200 game? If only these companies would scale back instead of focusing on how pretty the game should look for the next generation of consoles. If only these companies would focus more on stability than movie-like visuals. Unfortunately the telltale heart is starting to beat under the floor boards of the gaming industry. Game publishers and developers seem to be shooting for 720p 60 frames per second or sub 1080p and 30 frames per second. For example, "Ryse Son of Rome" is running at 900p, which is hardly better than 720p. If this were 2005, this would be understandable, but it is 2013. Technology has moved quite rapidly in recent years. I am not saying that gaming should be at the forefront of t3echnology, because bit is just gaming. The problem is, that this generation has lated for eight years and, after eight years, one would expect a grand leap in a console's graphic ability. Each console iteration offered something new in its graphic and game play, such as Nintendo 64 offering better, smoother 3D game play. But, to this younger generation, it appears to be the same. The biggest problems with these current consoles and new arrivals is that they are becoming more like PCs, which is taking away the uniqueness of video game consoles, which once offered an easy way to play games without the headaches of a computer. Games from the current generation have to deal with patch after patch. "Gears of War" is one example. It is quite easy to exploit certain glitches, such as, using the shot gun as a chainsaw, or making people randomly explode, but this game was released near the beginning of this generation. A more recent example is "Grand Theft Auto V Online". Rockstar, the developers of the bGTA series, released the online portion of the game a week after the initial release, allegedly so that the game would not be affected by review scores. Everyone who owned the game became beta testers the day the online portion came out and, based on consumer feedback, it seems like the game was barely in beta. Character profiles were lost, players were randomly kicked out of games, and glitches such as not being able to get into the lobby appeared. Various other problems also surfaced. In the days before console online interaction, if a game was buggy or broken, it was that way forever. There were no patches to fix the problems, the game would just always be known as that unfinished or broken product. With the renaissance of Xbox live, the Internet has given gamers the ability to contact each other from across the country or across the world, but this has its dark side. With the implementation of the Internet, developers can now create unfinished games and patch them later. The only way this will stop is if people stop buying half finished games.This is why the gaming crash of North America occurred in the 1980s, people realized they were getting a below mediocre product. Interestingly enough, there was no Information at the time to help people pick up on thse kinds of things.