Mention gaming consoles and the most common image that springs to mind is a teenager sitting in the dark in his bedroom shooting aliens – but that is no longer the case.
Gaming consoles have evolved incredibly from the early days of gaming. One of the first video games was a simple arcade game known as Pong.
Pong is a two-dimensional sports game that simulates table tennis. The player controls an in-game paddle by moving it vertically across the left side of the screen, and can compete against either a computer controlled opponent or another player controlling a second paddle on the opposing side. Players use the paddles to hit a ball back and forth. The aim is for a player to earn more points than the opponent; points are earned when one fails to return the ball to the other – simple right?
Since then, the video game industry has really flourished. We have recently seen the release of Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PlayStation 4, which have changed the world of gaming as we know it. Whilst the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 are still gaming consoles, effectively they are entertainment systems, and deliver much more than a simulated game of football.
The new consoles arrive with many capabilities, capabilities than can make your living room a whole lot more fun. For starters, there’s the Blu-Ray player. Blu-Ray is essentially the upgrade of the standard DVD as they show in a much higher definition than a regular DVD.
Then there are the apps. The systems come with a bounty of entertainment application such as the movie streaming service Netflix. Netflix enables the user to stream a potentially unlimited amount of films and television series. This could mean you may no longer have to buy DVDs! You also have the ability to catch up on TV using BBC iPlayer, 4oD, Demand 5, Sky Go and many more. Among these apps are services such as YouTube, Amazon and web browsers.
So no longer are gaming consoles purely for gaming. Sure, you can still enjoy racing cars and shooting guns, but you can also kick back on your sofa and watch a movie or TV programme without having to go to the shop, you can browse the internet without having to click a mouse and you can you can enjoy a world of entertainment without having to get out of your chair!