What is a 'good' console launch?

Evonisia

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Jun 24, 2013
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Well I've been reading up on the PS4's launch, as well as a thread (who's name escapes me) on the PS4's reviews. On that subject I noticed people discussing good console launches. One thing struck me as odd; the Xbox 360 was argued to have a good launch. But didn't the Xbox 360 has a cripplingly short library (barring Backwards Compatibility)? The RRoD was a major killjoy for anybody purchasing it and if the PS3 and Wii had not had terrible launches the 360 probably wouldn't have been seen in such a positive light.

Then I thought: What is a good console launch?

I've often been lead to believe that the Dreamcast had a good launch. It had a few games which many people enjoyed and sold well, and it wasn't the victim of any widespread hardware issues. Of course it died later on but at the start everything looked rosy. But is that the way to look at it? I'm slightly confused on this matter.
 

synobal

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I think selling out your available units and having one or two must play games would constitute a good launch. The PS4 kinda lacks that most the reviews I've seen have been pretty mediocre. Also avoiding any sort of bad press about a lot of malfunctioning consoles for the next week or so after the launch is important as well, but that first day is really important.
 

Luca72

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A launch that shows promise for the future of games. Something where it looks like the technology is advancing and allowing us to tell new stories in ways we never could before.

ie: Not more of the same with better graphics and unnecessary social networking applications
 

Smooth Operator

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I would say a launch with next to no faulty hardware units, with the full software on the damn machine, all features working, a minimum of 10 high grade games and 10 more indies, all regions at the same times, and no network hiccups.

And don't say it is unreasonable, Sony damn well knew what percentage of their units comes out faulty, they knew the software isn't up to snuff, they knew the numbers of units coming online and what the server load will be,... but at the end of the day it is less costly to have you test all the stuff and do the patching then them do it for every console themselves.
 

Weaver

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IMO the Gamecube had pretty good launch:
Dave Mirra Freestyle BMX 2
SSX Tricky
Super Monkey Ball
Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader
Luigi's Mansion

Those were all pretty good games IMO (I know people will contest me on Dave Mirra).

The SNES had:
Super Mario World
F-Zero
Pilotwings

Only 3 games worth playing, but they are all DAMN good games IMO.
 

Wolfenbarg

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Oct 18, 2010
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I guess a good launch means the system works as advertised, has at least one killer app, and quickly becomes part of the culture. While its star faded very quickly amongst core gamers, the Wii had a great launch. Everyone wanted one, and getting started with Wii Sports and Twilight Princess was a pretty strong way to go. I don't remember its launch titles, but the PS2 became a hit pretty quickly as well. Everyone was buying them even if they were just using them as DVD players, it was nuts.
 

KarmaTheAlligator

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A launch that has good games (yes, yes, I know, subjective), plenty of games (and by plenty I mean anything between 7-10 to keep people happy), and promises plenty more in the future. Also, good hardware without any cut corners, thank you. It should also make it clear that you're getting an upgrade from the last console, so it should include everything the last one did (backwards compatibility would be nice, but I understand it's not always possible) and possibly more.
 

T_ConX

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More than three launch games that we'll look back on and think highly of. They don't have to be Super Mario 64 quality. Maybe just Twilight Princess or Halo level.

No reports of cataclysmic system failures (Red Line/Ring of Death) in the first week. Yes, I know [link="http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/129729-Reports-of-PS4-Red-Line-of-Death-Appear-Online"]Sony is pegging the RLOD occurrence rate at 0.4%[/a], but that's just the current casualty rate. Who knows how much that's going to rise over the next few months.

Supply at least comes close to meeting demand. It's nice to see that EBay PS4s aren't even close to breaking $700.
 
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All pre-orders fulfilled, no "controversies" or major bugs, no platform crashes/lock ups due to unexpected demands, games available on day 1 and pre-order people get a tiny deal sweetener that later adopters can't get, like a badge or something.
 

Fox12

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Jun 6, 2013
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Well, first of all the graphics being displayed have to be so good that they're literally blinding. There also has to be a heavenly choir singing the consoles praises when you open the box. The games should all be totally flawless despite being made on a totally new system, with completely innovative gameplay and deep, well written characters that overshadow Shakespeare. There should also be cake.

Atleast, that's what the intrernet seems to expect.

Personally, I want the console to work. There should be a small handful of not completely terrible games. Preferably I would like there to be a working online component and a decent online back catologue of digital games. Also, take everything Microsoft planned to do, and do the opposite. I don't expect much from a launch. In truth, I don't think we really need new consoles at all. I'm still not done with my PS3 yet.
 

Hero of Lime

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Fox12 said:
Well, first of all the graphics being displayed have to be so good that they're literally blinding. There also has to be a heavenly choir singing the consoles praises when you open the box.
That's what it was like when I first played Gamecube games. I know "HD" on consoles would not show up till 2005 with the 360, but going from N64 to Gamecube for me was a sort of jump to HD.

OT: While I'm talking about it, the Gamecube was a fine console launch looking back at it. I didn't care I got a purple lunch box, it was a fine powerhouse for the time with awesome early games like Rogue Leader 2, Luigi's Mansion, and Super Smash Bros. Melee. That's how you do a console launch in my view.

Edit: Totally forgot about Pikmin! Granted, it came out a few months later, but I consider the first three months or so the launch of a console.
 

the_great_cessation

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I think the Gamecube had one of the best launches: Pikmin, Rogue Leader, Tony Hawk 3, Wave Race, Luigi's Mansion and SSX Tricky all available day one with Super Smash Bros. Melee a month in. It was relatively affordable and a noticeable technological leap from the N64.
 

Fox12

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Hero of Lime said:
Fox12 said:
Well, first of all the graphics being displayed have to be so good that they're literally blinding. There also has to be a heavenly choir singing the consoles praises when you open the box.
That's what it was like when I first played Gamecube games. I know "HD" on consoles would not show up till 2005 with the 360, but going from N64 to Gamecube for me was a sort of jump to HD.

OT: While I'm talking about it, the Gamecube was a fine console launch looking back at it. I didn't care I got a purple lunch box, it was a fine powerhouse for the time with awesome early games like Rogue Leader 2, Luigi's Mansion, and Super Smash Bros. Melee. That's how you do a console launch in my view.
I didn't pick up the gamecube until it came packaged with the Zelda special edition package, but I'll never forget staying up until 4:00 in the morning playing Ocarina of Time, Majoras Mask, Rogue Squadron 2, Smash Brothers, and Metroid Prime. Man, now I feel all nostalgic.
 

Hero of Lime

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Fox12 said:
Hero of Lime said:
Fox12 said:
Well, first of all the graphics being displayed have to be so good that they're literally blinding. There also has to be a heavenly choir singing the consoles praises when you open the box.
That's what it was like when I first played Gamecube games. I know "HD" on consoles would not show up till 2005 with the 360, but going from N64 to Gamecube for me was a sort of jump to HD.

OT: While I'm talking about it, the Gamecube was a fine console launch looking back at it. I didn't care I got a purple lunch box, it was a fine powerhouse for the time with awesome early games like Rogue Leader 2, Luigi's Mansion, and Super Smash Bros. Melee. That's how you do a console launch in my view.
I didn't pick up the gamecube until it came packaged with the Zelda special edition package, but I'll never forget staying up until 4:00 in the morning playing Ocarina of Time, Majoras Mask, Rogue Squadron 2, Smash Brothers, and Metroid Prime. Man, now I feel all nostalgic.
The early Gamecube era gives me a lot of nostalgia too, I remember how mind bogglingly good Metroid Prime looked back then. Still looks great even today!
 

FieryTrainwreck

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A console that functions and one killer app. Seriously, that's it.

Honestly, this whole "we don't have at least one awesome game for you on or within a few weeks of launch" thing is a pretty recent development. Saturn had Panzer Dragoon, Playstation had Wipeout, N64 had Mario 64, Dreamcast had Soul Calibur, PS2 had SSX, Gamecube had Rogue Squadron 2, and Xbox had Halo. Starting with 360 and PS3, we saw lackluster launch lineups with the first killer apps typically arriving the following year. Seems like PS4 and X1 are doing the same thing, and that's why I'm not buying either one this year.
 

Guffe

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Well the Wii got popular due to low price and WiiSports which was a good get drunk with friends family game.
GameCube had a good library when it was released.
The Xbox had at least one VERY good game in Halo.

These are things you can look with a more general feeling.

I might be getting some stick for this next comment, and I know Nintendo will disagree with me, but for me -PERSONALLY- the WiiU was a good launch!

Going from Wii graphics with the audio and video cables to something you connect with the HDMI was a HUGE leap!
Then I have not owned a 360 or PS3 so for me it included launch titles (bought within 1 month of release) Batman Arkham, Darksiders II, ZombiU, NintendoLand, AssCreed3, Mario, a few downloadable games and a few I bought for the Wii that I still hadnt played like Muaramasa, Xenoblade, TheLastStory although those probably won't count as launch titles :p.

And ever since, I've had the WiiU for about 11 months now and I still haven't reached a point where I have not had a game to play. And they are all games I've enjoyed.
 

Evonisia

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Jun 24, 2013
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So from what I can gather a good console launch will go have these features:
- Capable hardware which doesn't bug out on a large scale.
- At least 1 or 2 killer apps.
- Several good or at least enjoyable games.
- Enhanced on it's predecessor in a significant way.
- To sell reasonably well.
- Makes an impression on people (or popular culture)

Obviously that's not the full story, otherwise the Wii U would probably have been considered to have a good launch. Although selling well definitely has to rank higher than the others. The Wii U may have good games but it's sold poorly so far.
 

laggyteabag

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- No launch issues or controversy which is the fault of the console itself, such a the RRoD for the 360, or the many problems plaguing the PS4 right now.
- Games that sell the system.
- Sells well within the first few months after launch.
- Is well received by the public.