Platinum Games Studio Head Atsushi Inaba isn't too enthusiastic about the upcoming console generation, calling the new hardware "more of the same." The studio, perhaps best known for the Bayonetta series and the critically acclaimed NieR: Automata, is currently developing the Nintendo Switch-exclusive Astral Chain, as well as Bayonetta 3 and Babylon's Fall (both of which were absent from E3 2019).
Microsoft recently announced the code name for the next Xbox console, "Project Scarlett," at E3 2019. The console is set to release holiday 2020 with Halo: Infinite as a launch title, and Microsoft said at the conference that Scarlett will have approximately four times the power of the Xbox One X. Sony did not attend E3 this year, but we still have some details about the so-called PlayStation 5. A patent could be pointing to backward compatibility for the PS5, and the console will reportedly support save transfers with the PS4.
Inaba doesn't seem too impressed with any of this, however. In an interview with Video Games Chronicle, Inaba said that although the next generation will most likely improve graphics and wait times, the new hardware won't be "disruptive or super innovative." Inaba explained that game consoles used to contain custom hardware not seen in PCs, and now companies are "just grabbing stuff that already exists."
Inaba is instead interested in the new possibilities presented by streaming services such as Google Stadia, according to VGC. "For me," Inaba told VGC, "things like cloud platforms represent innovation and something very, very different.” While it may not be shaping up to ship with much exclusive software, the possibility of playing games like Doom Eternal and Destiny 2 anywhere is exciting. Although some industry professionals suspect the platform may run into some problems, it is at least—just as Inaba says—something entirely different.
As we previously reported, Google claimed at a GDC 2019 press conference that the Stadia will be more powerful than the Xbox One X and the PlayStation 4 Pro. Yet, in an interview with Gaming Bolt, 3D Realms' Frederik Schreiber said the next generation of consoles will be so much more powerful than the Stadia that the Stadia will be irrelevant. It's clear that Inaba and Schreiber are interested in different aspects of innovation when it comes to new consoles, with Schreiber being more interested in the power of the consoles and Inaba being more interested in brand new technology. It's worth noting, then, that in the interview with VGC, Inaba singled out the Nintendo Switch as an example of a console using hardware that already existed on PC, despite the console's unique hybrid device properties.