[ Blog Post ] Stop Saying ‘Next-Gen.’ Now.

This is going to be less of a rant-and-rave-style post as it will be a no-duh kind of post that really shouldn’t need clarifying but here we are: the definition of ‘next generation.’ Hell, let’s break it down even further for you journalist-types out there that like to use cool little hype and trigger words to get people to read your article among all the tripe out there.


PlayStation 4: Current Generation.


PlayStation 3: Last Generation


PlayStation 2: Retro

This is pretty simple stuff, folks. However, for you types who just love to argue, let’s take the gaming aspect out of it and break it down further, into the definitions of said words and what they mean together, in context:

  1. 1.
    (of a time or season) coming immediately after the time of writing or speaking.
    “we’ll go next year”
  2. 2.
    coming immediately after the present one in order, rank, or space.
    “the woman in the next room”
  1. 1.
    on the first or soonest occasion after the present; immediately afterward.
    “wondering what would happen next”
  1. 1.
    the next person or thing.
    “one moment he wasn’t there, the next he was”
  1. 1.
    all of the people born and living at about the same time, regarded collectively.
    “one of his generation’s finest songwriters”
  2. 2.
    the production of something.
    “methods of electricity generation”

Now that we have the definitions out of the way, let’s combine the two in context, here, so that way there’s further clarification for those who still don’t get it: let’s take the two definitions that have the most relevance in terms of gaming generations – next; “coming immediately after the present one in order, rank, or space” and generation; “the production of something”. Most people see gaming industry generations much like they do generations of people but seeing as there’s confusion, time and time again, regarding the definition of “next generation”, this is what I’m going with: “coming immediately after the present one in order, rank or space in the production of something.” Quite literally mashing the two up, side by side. It’s like language salad.

With that being said, you clearly couldn’t mean that the XBOX ONE, PlayStation 4, and Wii U are next generation, right? That would imply that they’re still yet to come and aren’t in current production? To say they’re current generation would mean that they’re here and ready for consumption, right? Right.

While the timing of when something becomes retro is entirely objective and changes from person to person, I’ve defined it here as whatever comes before the last generation of systems and I feel that it’s pretty appropriate as a general definition that most can agree on.


If It’s That Simple, Why Is It Still Being Used?

That’s probably just as simple, if not more simple than the ideals we’ve went over already: it would seem that the journalists and bloggers out there need buzz words and click-whore-worthy titles in order to draw attention to their articles, magazines, and other publications. Everyone in the industry – myself included – drew a lot of attention to this current generation while it was still in development. Last year wasn’t very different in how the industry really hyped up what’s to come and, I think, thanks to outlets like the Internet, it’s going to continue that way. Every person with an opinion and an foot into the industry has a blog or a website, nowadays, and the information is flowing a lot more freely and a lot less secretively than it used to. Bottom line, the press as a whole needs to find ways to keep people reading in-between majorly hyped announcements.

Still using terms like “next gen” and its ilk are a solid way to do that; people are buying into it, too, which means clicks for websites and purchases for magazines and the like. It all adds up to exposure and money, in the end: if using it only benefits people, why take such a position against it, I hear you asking? It’s pretty simple, actually: it takes advantage of people who just don’t know any better.

You guys have the knowledge now. Stop calling PS4, Wii U, and XBONE next generation.



3 Comments Add yours

  1. Colorwind says:

    To be fair, we’ve yet to get a true next generation game. However, yeah. PS3 and XBO are current gen now. Nothing is really happening with the 360 now, nothing has happened with the Wii for awhile, and although there’s some stuff for the PS3, there won’t be for long. This is probably the last year for the PS3.

    1. The Laymen's Gamer says:

      You know, that’s the constant excuse I keep hearing: something always along the lines of “the games haven’t impressed me so it isn’t next-gen yet.” I can’t agree with that vernacular. Be disappointed in the games but don’t keep using an improper term to justify your feelings. Just say something like “the launch lineup on all fronts hasn’t really impressed me, seems kind of lackluster” but not “nobody’s done anything I would call next-gen yet”. Look at past launches; this isn’t the first time this kind of thing has happened and it’ll be far from the last time, too.

  2. Colorwind says:

    I meant PS4 and XBO, not PS3.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s