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Which Consoles Are Actually Current-gen Systems?

current-gen consoles or next-gen?

In January 2021, we saw the big Resident Evil Village Showcase from Capcom. We all got to see some amazing gameplay footage as well as learn the release date. However none of that stood out that much to me while I was watching the showcase, because I was stuck on something Producer Pete Fabiano said at the very beginning about current-gen consoles.

Fabiano said he was very proud to announce that even though the team previously said that the game would release only on the PC, PlayStation 5, and the Xbox Series S|X, Resident Evil Village would also release on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. While that in of itself doesn’t seem odd or something that would stand out, it was the way Fabiano phrased it.

“I’m happy to announce we have been working hard to bring the survival horror experience onto current generation consoles as well.”

Current generation. He called the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One “current generation consoles.” Technically, these consoles are part of the last generation, as the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series S|X released in November 2020. Therefore, these are the consoles that are current generation. So why did he phrase it like that?

While it’s possible this was a slip-up, these presentations often have teleprompters for the speaker to use, instead of requiring them to memorize a speech. Unless he ad-libbed that part into his speech, it’s doubtful that this phrasing was indeed a slip-up.

So, assuming it was intentional and not a slip-of-the-tongue, why would Fabiano, and possibly others at Capcom, consider the PS4 and Xbox One to still be current generation consoles? I have one major theory on this, and it’s not in either Sony’s or Microsoft’s favor. I can’t help but think that reasons why Fabiano called them current-gen are because

  • the user bases for the new consoles are low, and
  • it’s impossible to buy any of them.

Not to mention, the second reason is most likely causing the first.

On the surface, this makes sense. However, Resident Evil Village will not release until May 2021. However, on January 27, 2021 the AMD CEO explained that there’s a massive PS5 and Xbox Series S|X chip shortage due to manufacturing issues. The CEO additionally does not expect the situation to resolve until around this summer. Maybe. With that knowledge in mind, it’s fairly safe to say that most game developers shouldn’t expect decent sales with PS5 and Xbox Series exclusives.

As such, we may see far many more similar statements regarding previously announced new generation exclusives. It will be interesting to see how any other developers of upcoming titles address the new generation. Perhaps Fabiano has a point, and we should consider them as next-generation consoles instead of current-gen.

Keri Honea
Keri has been a part of the video games industry as a writer and editor since 2004. Her video game backstory is long, convoluted, and better left unheard. When she’s not playing or writing about video games, she’s reading Warhammer 40k novels, teaching yoga, and making sure her kids don’t burn down the house.