As the next generation of consoles get ready to launch. You have to wonder what affect this will have on the fighting tournament scene. In the past few years we have seen it grow from just a few tournaments with 100 people tops playing to huge tournaments with hundreds of players competing. Part of this was due to the success of consoles. With accurate ports of fighters from the arcade to home (some better than arcade ports) players could practice their game over and over and then take those tactics to a tourney and do pretty good. 2D fighters were able to flourish despite the best efforts of SCEA to make the PS2 a OMG look at all the games they are in 3D LOLOL Also People being able to build their own arcade quality sticks to play on helped the tournament scene to grow even more.
Now as the next generation of consoles get ready to launch we have seen very little in terms of fighters. There is the Tekken teaser and Virtua Fighter 5 coming for the next gen as well as DOA 4 but we have not seen anything from out favorites yet. We have heard nothing from SNK as of yet other than a rumor of KOF MI 2 being for the X-360 and PS2. Capcom has not said anything at all. No word on a SF4, CVS3 or even ::shutters:: CFE2. No word form ARC System works at all on a new Guilty gear for next gen yet either. It is starting to look like there might be a drying up of the 2D fighter altogether.
Also another concern is the next gen console itself. All of them now feature wireless controllers and unless there are ports on them we have not seen yet there is no place to plug in a wired controller. So what happen to all the custom sticks we all have built? Are they all now useless? Is there a way to effectively hack a wireless controller PCB? Will it be able to run arcade parts and not die after 5 minutes of play?
My thoughts are:
The large following we see now will dwindle down a lot in a couple of years and then level off. There will always be new players coming in old ones retiring but the mega tournaments we see now will get a little smaller.
Tournaments have moved from Arcade cabinets to consoles in recent years and this works well for now. However as our consoles age and get harder to fix/replace we will see tournaments moving back to arcade cabinets once again. Just look at how Marvel moved from Arcade to DC and back to Arcade again as proof.
Unfortunately ( as a stick builder myself) I dont see a way to hack a wireless pressure sensitive controller (for now at least) so sticks for next gen will have to be modded from whatever we get from Hori or someone else.
At least his is what I see coming. What are all of your thoughts on this and how the next gen will affect the fighting scene?