Ahhh console evolution its a very unappreciated science people just know the next one will be better but dont ever take time to look at the evolution of this magnificent industry.
Consoles differ so much today from those in the 60s and i dont mean in the obvious way that being performance i mean in design the look the style you can almost guess the decade simply by looking at a consoles exterier casing slightly sad really lol.
Any way down to the tasks... and its plain and simple for the first part yes the industry was focused completely on the interfaces and getting the most out of what was extremely primative technology at the time in other words if you were to take my list of 3 from the previous blog on storylines this is as it was then.
1,gameplay ( extremely simple mostly involving just left and right or up and down motions)
2,graphics ( even more simple and mostly just blocks on the screen that either moved or didnt)
3, storyline (non existant but thats because the industry was more focused on development visually and getting the most out of the primative machines which really doesnt differ much from today).
I cannot argue thought at the time with this being new technology, it did fasinate people much as the realism of todays games compel it was impressive for its time and nobody cared what it looked like on the outside or as a matter of fact what the graphics were full stop. They were perfectly happy with there little white blocks moving on screen ^_^.
These days standards have definatly changed. People like nice looking consoles and it brings me back to my first impression of the N64. Im not sure why but i thought the console was the best looking one i had ever seen as it gave options in colours and even transparent designs, but it was more than that... It wasnt box'y like other consoles of the 90's it had more about it and id go as far as saying it was the the first pretty console lol, that at least started the idea of variations on a commercial level as opposed to sonys silver playstation that was released as a special edition.
Ive always said curves are the future for any design simply because there is nothing cool about a brick. Id definatly count XBOX 360 as a brick but with its custom templates it makes it a bit more acceptable ontodays markets as does the Wii, however the PS3 is a look to the future in almost every way though Sony lack the motivation and innovation of Microsoft and Nintendo to come up with anything different but better graphics.
When it comes down to personal opinion on the user interfaces through all of the consoles i have played, id have to say the the best one i have seen is the Xbox 360's latest one which is just so lush but even the old one was nicely layed out and very easy to navigate. I know many would say the PS3's or a more primative one such as the Dreamcasts or PSX/1 but im thinking of it in terms the most features yet the easiest to navigate and still looking nice and 360's interface has all of that. I cant even knock the controller it may look a freak but its so much better designed than the PS3 controller. It would seem that Microsoft admired the Gamecube controller alot and always said the gamecube controller was one of the best.
By far the worse interface i have ever seen is that of the Gamecube! Although it has a good controller design as most of Nintendos consoles do, its interface just isnt nice to look at though admitedly its got a bit more about it than that of the PS2 or PSX/1. Nethertheless its still harder to navigate than other consoles but at least they ammended this with the Wiis nice and simple interface.
The future of video games is definalty heading in a game pad free enviroment and personally i already think the joystick is dead and buryied! Wii has pathed the way for a new generation in gaming where interactivity is the new major factor and i think hand free gaming is coming in the near future.