PS4, being the one system my teens ask for CONSTANTLY, has obviously seen the most gameplay (at least, until it crashed). With four wireless controllers and a wide variety of games to appeal to all ages, PS4 games can be used for programs for all the different divisions within a library- youth, tween, teen, and young adult.
With that being said, there are some considerations to remember when looking at games to purchase:
- Does it need online connectivity or constant communication?
- Does it need additional support, like connection to an online community?
- How many players does it actually support?
- What’s the age range of the game, and why was it rated like that?
- For the program I have in mind, can I use this game in that context?
- Is my gaming area open to everyone or restricted by ages? If I plan to use an M game, will parents/younger kids be able to see the violence/gore that earned the game the M rating?
- How much shelf life does it have? Is it a flash trend (snap braclets) or is it here to stay (duct tape)?
Playstation first hit American soil in 1995, a little over 9 months after its launch in Japan. It’s history can be traced back to a joint project between Nintendo and Sony to create a CD-ROM based gaming system; the partnership died when the two future gaming giants couldn’t come to terms over how to split the profits. Playstation was given the go-ahead for development in 1993, and launched less than two years later with the backing of two now household names, Electronic Arts and Namco.
The Playstation 2, released in 2000, is considered the most successful home gaming console in the world, with over 155 MILLION units sold. Released over a year ahead of XBOX and Nintendo’s GameCube, the PS2 shipped for 12 years until January 2013, when production ended. The PS3 was released in 2006, and the current generation, the PS4, was released in 2013. Considered an “eighth-generation” model (along with the XBOX ONE and Wii U), the PS4 has a Playstation app that allows tablets and smartphones to turn into a secondary controller for the system. Sony is also improving its streaming services and application packages in order to be more competitive with XBOX ONE, and be an all-in-one home device for home users.
In 2001, Microsoft entered the console gaming world with a splash with the XBOX. Bill Gates and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (only known as The Rock in those days) introduced a gaming console that had teamed up with a little-known development company called Bungie who re-imagined their game Halo into a first person shooter to show off the best of the new system’s capabilities. Those who laughed at the bulky design and high price — Nintendo was releasing the GameCube at the same time for cheaper, while Sony’s sleeker Playstation 2 had been on the market for 6 months already — were silenced when the higher-powered XBOX went into such high demand that they were being scalped on Ebay.
In addition to being high-powered and an American entry in competition with imports, the XBOX brand became known for its first shooter games — while its best known franchise is Halo, which has gone on to include board and card games, figures, toys, collectibles, and its own fanbase, there’s no limit to the amount of FPS and major league sports tie-ins.
Now on its 4th regeneration (XBOX ONE), Microsoft is a mainstay in American gaming culture, and used in professional gaming tournaments around the world.
Nintendo started capturing the world’s entertainment minds in 1983 when it released the NES (Nintendo Entertainment System)- that was the one that everyone HAD to have, with the cartridges that you plugged into it, with Duck Hunt and Super Mario Brothers, and everything was in COLOR, and the controllers were more than just a joystick. Now, we’re using the 8 bit graphics as templates for crafts with perler beads like this:
Brought over from Japan, Nintendo created a swarm of characters that have lasted for generations: Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Link, Zelda, Donkey Kong, and Yoshi to name a few. As each generation of tech evolved, Nintendo made choices- which path do we follow, what games to we add to our collection, and what consumers do we want to attract? Their newest generation of full-sized console, the Wii U, was introduced in 2012, and has slowly made its way into libraries and library programs across the country.