Forums - Gaming Discussion - Poll - Is Switch a 9th gen console?

With Sony and MS releasing new hardware, will Switch be considered as 9th gen?

Yes 79 51.97%
 
No 73 48.03%
 
Total:152

Eh, close enough.



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The_Liquid_Laser said:
JWeinCom said:

 Didn't we do this already or was that someone else?

At any rate, that's not really scientific reasoning... You're skipping from observation (XBoxX and PS5 sole more/less than their predecessors) to your explanation (Switch caused/didn't cause the decrease) without actually justifying why that's the explanation. There are many other possible reasons why they may do better or worse than their predecessors.

Moreover, how does calling Switch a gen 9 console help you make a prediction? If the word generation never entered the gaming lexicon, and we simply evaluated how systems will compete or not compete based on factors such as marketing, price point, features, and specs, would your prediction be any different? If not, what is generation adding to the conversation?

Well, let's explicitly spell out what scientific reasoning looks like.  The first thing is that scientific reasoning uses Occam's Razor which means that "the simplest explanation is most likely the right one."  If one says "systems are selling this way because they are in the same generation", it is simpler than saying "systems are selling this way because of a variety of factors such as marketing, price point, features, and specs".  The simpler explanation is most likely the correct one.  That is why I am talking about generations.  In fact one reason people practice science and develop theories is to give a simple explanation for phenomena that appear complex.  A key part of scientific reasoning is to keep things simple while still taking all of the data into account.

Secondly, the scientific method can basically be described using the following steps.
1. Do Research
2. Ask a Question
3. Form a Hypothesis 
4. Make a Prediction Based on the Hypothesis
5. Test the Prediction
6. Use the Results to Make More Hypotheses.
(With the understanding that a correct prediction means the hypothesis is strengthened while an incorrect prediction means the hypothesis needs to be changed.)

So, I actually use this process a lot when studying the video game industry.  There are some ideas that I am confident with and others where I had to change my thinking.  Here is one relevant example of a prediction I made about 7 years ago.

1. Research - There is a ton of past data on game sales to study.  I've looked at plenty and also read books on video game history, etc....
2. Question - Why is it that some systems for sale at the same time seem to compete with each other and others do not?  For example why did the Genesis/Megadrive compete with the SNES and not the NES when all 3 were for sale for many years together? 
3. Hypothesis - Systems need to be in both the same generation in order to compete with each other.  Generations need at least 4 years before the next one begins, and they begin when the first console maker releases a successor. (This is all based on previous observation.)
4. Prediction - Sales for Generation 8 systems will be similar to sales for Generation 6 systems.  Specifically, PS2+GC+XB = WiiU+PS4+XB1 with a margin of error of +/-20%.  (Generation 7 seemed to have a lot of customers that came and left, so it is left out.)  Any system released 2016 or later will be considered part of the next generation.
5. Test the Prediction - Basically I wait and see until all of the systems have stopped selling.  Although at this point, I'm fairly confident that my prediction will be correct.  (There is also a bunch of specific analysis I could do both here and for #4, but for now I am keeping it simple.)
6. Results - The generation system explains the market data pretty well.  We are also far enough along in time that I am now confident in putting Switch in Generation 9, the next generation.  Predictions that I make going forward will be based on this.

When I am talking about scientific reasoning, this is the sort of thing I am talking about.  Of course people can, and will, quibble about the details, but this is a solid framework to go by when analyzing the data.

Occam's Razor is that the simpler explanation is preferred. Not that the simpler explanation is correct. Basically, it's that you don't add anything unnecessary to your explanation. But you still have to include everything that IS necessary. 

There are two problems. First of all, generation doesn't explain things as well as looking at multiple factors. Take gen 7 for example which you just like... chucked out cause you didn't like the data. By your framework the Wii, PS3, and XBox 360 are simply both gen 7 consoles... yet, obviously the PS3 and 360 competed with eachother in a way that they didn't really compete with the Wii. Appealing to generations offers no explanation. On the other hand, looking at all the factors, we would expect incredibly similar PS3 and 360 to compete directly and split up the lion's share of the existing market , which they did. We would expect the Wii to take some part of that market (as it launched at the same time, was Nintendo's marketing focus, had some library overlap, and was somewhat comparable in price at various points) but not a great deal, because of the differences in specs and advertising. We would also expect that because it has new features, it would have the potential to reach new customers. 

More importantly generations doesn't actually explain anything. You're trying to explain why certain systems compete with eachother. Your conclusion is that systems compete with eachother because they are part of the same generation... Which is just another way to say that they compete with eachother.  It's entirely circular.

The one that's actually violating Occam's Razor is you. Technological specs, timing of release, price point, game libraries, marketing etc, are factors that are undeniably real, and I don't think any rational person would deny that these impact how systems will sell overall, and how they will interact with each other. These aren't unnecessary things I'm adding, these are necessary things.

What is being added is the concept of generations. This is something that doesn't exist inherently the same way price points, marketing campaigns, and games libraries do. It's a framework that we're creating to categorize things, perhaps in a useful way or perhaps not. Since we're adding it, it has to have some value, and if not, that's violating Occam's Razor.

So again, I ask, can we make the same predictions based on factors that you and I both know are real and agree are relevant (timing, marketing, library, price point, etc.)?  If so, why would we add the concept of generations, which based on this topic is something that people don't agree is relevant, and something people can't agree on the meaning of?

Last edited by JWeinCom - on 02 August 2020

Rab said:
aikohualda said:

easier to study time line...

History have this all over their subject. For example instead of studying the whole hominin timeline... they divided it to miocene, pliocene, pleistocene.... gaming industry is being studied and will just keep on expanding. By having a defined timeline, it would be easier for people who read gaming history based on separate timeline.

But arbitrarily lumping of unrelated consoles together from different companies just seems a waste of time, proof is how many people argue over this constantly, as it's not clear and intuitive at all, but hugely subjective, just a waste of time and angst, people should be pursuing more meaningful discourse     

why would it be a waste of time... since competition within the market is one of the biggest thing why gaming is moving forward.  Studying the competition within the timeline is very important imo



 

 Yes it is. It succeeded the 8th gen Wii U and 3DS, therefore it is a 9th gen console

If people define what generation a console belongs to based on the generation of it's predecessor, all the while Nintendo keep releasing their systems more frequently than Sony or Microsoft do, we'll eventually end up in a scenario where the next Sony and Microsoft console will release after a Nintendo console, but the Sony/Microsoft console will be a generation behind despite releasing afterwards.

Something that approximately looks like this:

Spoiler!

(2017) Switch released, succeeds 8th Gen WiiU, so is defined as 9th gen

(2023-2024) Switch 2 released, succeeds 9th gen Switch, so is defined as 10th gen

(2028 - 2030) Switch 3 released, succeeds 10th gen Switch 2, so is defined as 11th gen

(2034 - 2036) Switch 4 released, succeeds 11th gen Switch 3, so is defined as 12th gen

(2039 - 2042) Switch 5 released, succeeds 12th gen Switch 4, so is defined as 13th gen

(2020) PS5 released, succeeds 8th gen PS4, so is defined as 9th gen

(2027 - 2028) PS6 is released, succeeds 9th gen PS5, so is defined as 10th gen

(2034 - 2036) PS7 is released, succeeds 10th gen PS6, so is defined as 11th gen

(2040 - 2043) PS8 is released, succeeds 11th gen PS7, so is defined as 12th gen

tldr - Switch 5 released before PS8, Switch 5 is 13th gen, PS8 is 12th gen

To get around this issue, either the next Playstation and Xbox jump two gen instead of one, and Nintendo end up being in a generation by themselves for one gen despite having competition, or two of Nintendo's systems need to be a part of the same gen.

Alternatively you could be all like "to hell with it, screw this generation system

Last edited by NyanNyanNekoChan - on 03 August 2020

Yes because consoles are a measure of time. Switch is the successor to both the 3DS and the Wii U which explains its weird timing compared to the other two. But it falls into the same bucket.



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JRPGfan said:
Pemalite said:

Ray Tracing and SSD's is the technological definer for next-gen.

As for the Audio... We had 3D positional audio years ago... Aureal A3D comes to mind.
Then the industry went backwards for a few decades.

How many games used it on consoles?

A quick google search of "Aureal A3D games", and all I see pop up is a old video of half-life on a pc, with a fanmade mod, that uses it.
It sounds horrible.... ei. badly used.

I think this new level of audio (if game devs use it) should make for a very noticeable differnt between this gen, and older ones (atleast in audio quality).

It was supported at the engine level in most popular engines like Unreal Engine, Quake, GoldSrc (Half Life) and more. It certainly had support.

It was *the* pinnacle of positional 3D audio until just recently... Which is absolutely crazy.
When Microsoft released Windows Vista, they removed the Audio hardware abstraction layer, so games that relied on DirectSound3D (I.E. Everything at the time)
could no longer use the sound effects supported in hardware.
That mean multi-channel surround sound, environmental effects and the audio quality all took a hit and became a featureless experience. - Creative did try and rectify that issue with ALchemy, but the damage was done to a degree, the world was a software based one.

So yes, Aureal A3D had industry support, it sounded absolutely amazing, it was the ducks nuts.

I feel the Xbox Series X and Playstation 5 will finally offer a hardware solution that will eclipse it in every regard... And that is actually super exciting for myself, no longer do I need to rely on my PC for a decent audio experience.

Pyro as Bill said:
160rmf said:
Yeah, guys. Keep coming with these arbitrary labeling and have a huge messed timeline. You are all so right

There's no confusion.

Wii is 6th gen like GC because there wasn't a huge power leap so PS2 lost the 6th gen in the US.

WiiU was a power leap so it's 7th gen like PS3/X360 but Switch is 7th gen too because no power leap therefore ''GC'' sold 123m and ''WiiU'' will sell ~160m.

The Wii used the exact same hardware as the Gamecube. - Only differences were in memory sizes and clockrates.

Every console generation was defined by certain hardware based characteristics... For example:
1st console generation: Limited to just a couple of colours, limited to zero audio capabilities.
2nd generation console: Faster 8-bit processing, 8-128 colours, mono audio.
3rd generation console: 8-bit waveform Audio, 256 colours, 32-64 sprites, hardware based scrolling.
4th generation console: 16-bit processing, parallax scrolling, 4096 colour pallets, multi-channel stereo audio, sprite rotation and scaling.
5th generation console: Texture mapped 3d polygonal graphics, 32-bit processing, 16-bit/CD Quality Audio.
6th generation console: Perspective Correct Texturing, Hardware TnL, DVD.
7th generation console: Programmable Pixel Shaders 2.0, Online Gaming via LAN, Mechanical Hard Drives, 64bit processing.
8th generation console: Unified Pixel Shaders, Hardware based Tessellation, Unified Memory.
9th generation console: Solid State Drives, Ray Tracing, Hardware 3D positional Audio. - More?


I tend to lump a console based on it's hardware characteristics... Because those hardware similarities tend to ensure ports of the same era, there is a reason why the WiiU got ports like Assassins Creed 4 based on the 7th gen release, rather than the enhanced 8th gen.
Or why the Wii looked more like a 6th gen device than a 7th.



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NyanNyanNekoChan said:

 Yes it is. It succeeded the 8th gen Wii U and 3DS, therefore it is a 9th gen console

If people define what generation a console belongs to based on the generation of it's predecessor, all the while Nintendo keep releasing their systems more frequently than Sony or Microsoft do, we'll eventually end up in a scenario where the next Sony and Microsoft console will release after a Nintendo console, but the Sony/Microsoft console will be a generation behind despite releasing afterwards.

Something that approximately looks like this:

Spoiler!

(2017) Switch released, succeeds 8th Gen WiiU, so is defined as 9th gen

(2023-2024) Switch 2 released, succeeds 9th gen Switch, so is defined as 10th gen

(2028 - 2030) Switch 3 released, succeeds 10th gen Switch 2, so is defined as 11th gen

(2034 - 2036) Switch 4 released, succeeds 11th gen Switch 3, so is defined as 12th gen

(2039 - 2042) Switch 5 released, succeeds 12th gen Switch 4, so is defined as 13th gen

(2020) PS5 released, succeeds 8th gen PS4, so is defined as 9th gen

(2027 - 2028) PS6 is released, succeeds 9th gen PS5, so is defined as 10th gen

(2034 - 2036) PS7 is released, succeeds 10th gen PS6, so is defined as 11th gen

(2040 - 2043) PS8 is released, succeeds 11th gen PS7, so is defined as 12th gen

To get around this issue, either the next Playstation and Xbox jump two gen instead of one, and Nintendo end up being in a generation by themselves for one gen despite having competition, or two of Nintendo's systems need to be a part of the same gen.

Alternatively you could be all like "to hell with it, screw this generation system

I see what you mean but it's entirely possible to skip a gen. If Sega released a console for the first time since 1999, it wouldn't be a gen 7 machine. It would be gen 9 along with everyone else.

I still say the Switch is gen 8 but if Nintendo released 3 systems (gen 9,10, and 11) and Xbox/PS only released one, one could argue that they just sat the generation out. Just playing devil's advocate, here.



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aikohualda said:
Rab said:

But arbitrarily lumping of unrelated consoles together from different companies just seems a waste of time, proof is how many people argue over this constantly, as it's not clear and intuitive at all, but hugely subjective, just a waste of time and angst, people should be pursuing more meaningful discourse     

why would it be a waste of time... since competition within the market is one of the biggest thing why gaming is moving forward.  Studying the competition within the timeline is very important imo

That doesn't require a generation classification

i.e. Console X was competing with Console Y from 2013 - 2016, Console X was then competing with Console Z from 2017 - 2020



It depends: if the Switch's projections start to get into the 130m+ territory, people will define it as an 8th gen console or a 9th gen platform independent of traditional consoles because Sony and Microsoft diehards will not want to enter the 9th gen with a victor already decided. If projections are at roughly 100m then people will define it as a competing 9th gen console because it would be beatable. Personally, I see it as an 8th gen console because it's going to spend more of its active lifetime competing against the PS4/XB1 than the PS5/XSX.



Power of the hardware doesnt make it an 8th gen console. Its Nintendo 9th gen console.