Console Wars Episode MMXVI: The Tech Empires Strike Back

Not very long ago, in a game store not far, far, away…

TRENCHENT- It appears after what seems like a “Millennium” Megamer Games will no longer be flying “Solo” in the Freedemian domestic gaming market. In light of a recent boom in Megamer Games in the modern game industry, largely fueled by the release of the GameOne SuperNova, GamePhone SuperNova, and a series of new games ranging from remakes of the classics to modern three-dimensional racing games, it appears the “Force” driving the Freedemian Console Wars has “awakened” after a long slumber, as at least two other tech giants look to enter the market.

Back around the time of the SuperbMegamer and the Megamer128, the console market was ripe for newcomers. One may remember the early successes of Techtari with their LigerX console line, who up until the SuperbMegamer was winning the battle, or Magnasonic, the electronics company that had been a household name for analog televisions for three decades, releasing their SEGC-1 (Super Electronic Gaming Console). Even then-giant QuinTech tried to get into the game with a QuinOS 93 powered console called the QDiscer (games came on floppy disks).

But one of the companies that almost made it was Magnasonic’s biggest competitor, Zenergy. At around the same time as Megamer’s StayGamer and GoGamer (the GoGamer being the first widely successful portable handheld full strength console, even if it was sort of bulky), Zenergy released a console known as the Zenergy ZeeBox Gaming System. The console actually was very high quality for its time. The problem was that it was designed to compete with the Megamer128, not the StayGamer. The project had been delayed just one year too long (The device was originally supposed to be a collaboration with Techtari making games and Zenergy making hardware, but Techtari decided to roll solo, basically killing themselves in the process), and Zenergy lost that race painfully.

Zenergy would make a comeback in the late 90’s. While Megamer’s original three Game One consoles (up to the Game3) were widely popular, Zenergy would win out when it came to handhelds. The ZeeBoy, a handheld gaming system, was the easiest to carry around of any console of that time, and while the games were slightly inferior, the convenience of being able to take the game almost anywhere was quite significant. Megamer, however, would respond with a game changer- the GameOne NG (New Generation), which basically created a handheld stronger than the Game3 console that could connect to a console box or be used separately. The device, first to offer a touchscreen, good 3D graphics and other features now taken mostly for granted in a small convenient design, trumped Zenergy’s ZeeBoy Silver and basically kicked Zenergy out of the console game.

Until now.

Zenergy has been putting a lot into research and development this past year. After the QuinTech buyout by StepStone Technology, they released a beta line of phones, tablets and computers, hoping the Zenergy name and their quality hardware would carry them through and make them a strong competitor in the computer market. (The first actual computer line running zOS ready for sale without the “beta” labeling is supposed to come out in 2017.) However, it looks like Zenergy plans to take on StepStone AND Megamer Games.

Today, Zenergy released some images of patents for a new console and some details in a TweetBook post, titled “The ZBox returns. Late 2017. Zenergy is back in the console business!!” The device, to run on cartridges like the original ZeeBox, is a cube about 9 inches by 9 inches, and is very similar to the original design. It seems based off of released details that the parts inside are far improved, meant to compete with the SuperNova and whatever comes after it.

Considering the GameOne SuperNova has seen the most success as a handheld (Megamer designed it so each handheld can be independent, but can also link up to a single console box to act as a single console; the handheld option is far more popular), the ZBox, which is a plug-into-your-television console, could take the market for home consoles by storm.

Megamer entering the phone market with the GamePhone SuperNova seemed to be what ticked computer giant StepStone off. With Zenergy nipping at their heels in computing and Megamer seriously gaining a market share in phones as many gamers choose GamePhones over StepPhones, StepStone’s near monopoly status is disappearing quickly. The StepStone “empire” appears to be “striking back” with a new concept for their own console and game phones, known as StepUp Home Console. Like Zenergy, they are going to hit the home console market hard. However, unlike Zenergy, they are trying to compete in the handheld market against the GamePhones by making a new line of StepPhones that can run any StepUp game using a disc reader that will attatch to the phone. (These devices will be quite expensive, though.)

(Megamer struck back at StepStone by cancelling any plans for Megamer GameApps to be available through the StepStone App Mall and ending plans to release old games for PC.)

However, the next big obstacle facing these companies is games. No matter how heated the “console wars” get, Megamer tends to win on games, especially now, considering 2016 is expected to be the strongest year for Megamer-made games in decades. Megamer Games are only available for Megamer consoles. This means these other companies won’t have access to Snapster, Zoball, FutureCity Racing, OGFIA racing games, IFWC games, or anything else Megamer. Considering these have become some of the most popular, choosing a SuperNova over a ZBox is not exactly a difficult choice, even if the specs are a teeny bit better on the ZBox. The StepUp has a far better chance of competing, but games are still an issue.

However, the real question us at PWN Technology News are wondering is-

Isn’t it too late in the history of technology advancement for a console war? At this point, apps and in-app purchases outsell regular console games (though Freedemian tech giant StepStone frowns upon them) and PC gaming has recently outpaced any sort of console (so I suppose technically, StepStone, one of the biggest personal computer companies in the world, was already in the gaming market). Consoles and physical games, whether on a cartridge or a disk, are going out of style quickly. I would predict that even for companies like Megamer, disks and cartridges (or in their case, special USB drive cartridges) will be gone in a decade. Then again, that’s just our opinions.

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