Which console will win 2010?


1. It’s just going to win, end of story

No amount of bitching is going to change the fact that Nintendo has captured the minds of a much wider audience, so the most obvious “reason” the company is going to come out on top this year is because, well, it just will. Nintendo is in a very strong first place right now, and with Wii recently dropped to $199, the frenzy has begun all over again. The system sells, the games sell (except maybe the ones you actually care about, but that’s a whole other story) and this is all before we factor in the DS – another platform in an unchallenged lead.

Above: Even if you’re tired of Wii, the rest of the world is ready to bite

Wii Play is now the best-selling game of all time in the US. Mario Kart Wii, Wii Fit and New Super Mario Bros (the DS one) have been in the monthly charts ever since their arrival, which for the latter was damn near four years ago. These games sell forever, continually lining Nintendo’s pockets with cash while both Microsoft and Sony scramble to figure out motion controls (sigh) and how to better monetize their comparatively expensive systems.

True, this article is more about measuring games and their impact on you, a savvy gamer, but I was tasked with finding FIVE reasons Nintendo’s going to win this year, so I have to take this route. Sorry!

2. The DSi XL is pretty big

Were you aware that you just read a joke? I was using “big” to mean both the physical size of the handheld and the staggering degree of its popularity. When you’ve finished laughing at that little gem, you can avert your attention to Nintendo’s continued handheld dominance, which was recently widened by the Japanese release of the DSi LL. It’s set to release in the US and UK in 2010, making it the fourth (!) version of the device in its five-year existence.

Above: That is the new DSi LL (XL in the US and UK markets)

The whole bit to the DSi XL is its size – the screens are larger and the stylus is thicker, making it suitable for those who prefer phones with cartoonishly large buttons or 400 pound linebackers who crush all other handhelds in their pie-sized hands. In all seriousness, it could reach a vast audience who has, up to this point, avoided handheld gaming because the text is too small or the buttons are too cramped. And, if these new DSi owners do decide to buy a new console during the fall season, you can bet it'll be Wii. Our only concern is that the DSi hasn’t even been out a year in the US, and Nintendo’s already releasing the DSi XL. We think it’s potentially too much too soon, but if history is any indication, it’ll do stupid-big numbers and we’ll end up loving that huge-ass screen in the process.

3. Top-notch exclusives from third parties

Outside the NES and SNES days, Nintendo hasn’t exactly been synonymous with third-party support. Most N64 and GameCube owners bought their systems to play Nintendo-made games, not necessarily the stuff put out by other companies. Strangely, the opposite is the case with Wii, as its success has damn near run every other platform off the shelf. Yes, a chunk of those games are $20 garbage, but dig a little deeper and you’ll find no shortage of excellent, exclusive games.

Above: Fanciful stylized gore you WON’T see on PS3/360

This year alone we’ve got No More Heroes 2, Red Steel 2, Epic Mickey, Tatsunoko Vs Capcom, Dragon Quest IX, NBA Jam and The Grinder, all coming from teams who know their shit.  Expect each of those to rock. Now, that could be their doom, as they’re well-developed Wii games that aren’t Mario or minigames. So far that’s proved disastrous (Dead Space Extraction, MadWorld, Zack and Wiki, Dewy’s Adventure etc), but as more and more high-rated games appear on Wii (that avoid extensive waggle and actually cater to traditional gamers), some of those disenfranchised owners could start dipping their toes in and discovering all the top-drawer content they’ve disregarded up to this point. Honestly, if you’re writing the system off entirely, it’s your loss.

4. Mario, Metroid and Pokemon triple threat

Even if the sight of Wii Play sets your soul ablaze in a gyrating spasm of seething hate, you still can’t deny Nintendo knows how to craft a memorable experience when it comes to its key franchises. If it’s a main entry, expect sales to be in the millions and review scores to start in the 80 range and only rise from there. This year we’re getting three serious entries in three of the company’s biggest properties, each of which will shame whatever other games come out that same day. It starts with Pokemon HeartGold and SoulSilver, two classy remakes of the series’ megaton Game Boy Color debut. The 2000 originals sold more than 20 million copies worldwide – what do you think these remakes will do on a vastly more popular handheld?

Above: They’re not going away, so you might as well give ‘em a shot

Maybe Pokemon’s not your thing. Fair enough, we get that (even though you’re not fooling anyone with that “I’m too cool for Pokemon” attitude). Perhaps a direct sequel to Wii’s best game is more your speed? Super Mario Galaxy 2, while terribly familiar so far, will no doubt be another stellar entry in a series that’s never produced a bad game. Ratchet, Jak, Sly and the rest of the platformer pretenders have some fine games under their belt, but never forget who defined this type of game in the first place. Finally, we have Metroid: Other M, notable mainly because of its dense shroud of mystery. All we know is it’s an action game developed by Team Ninja (the Ninja Gaiden people), so it’s bound to be a ridiculously intense, hard as balls, totally over the top experience, all set within one of gaming’s most beloved universes.  You want hardcore? Here it is. Now shut up, fanboys.

5. The unknown

With few exceptions, Nintendo rocks E3. It’s keen on surprises, and year after year it manages to surprise the snark right out of an increasingly cynical game-journo audience. Take last year, for example: After 2008’s dismal (but wholly unexpected) Wii Music unveiling, we all pictured 2009 to be another ho-hum report on Wii and DS sales numbers and a handful of blah-y new games. Instead, last year’s show was all about HOLY SHIT GOLDENSUNMARIOMETROIDZELDAVITALITYSENSOR!!!

Above: We were on the scene for 2009’s non-stop reveal-a-thon

2004 blasted us with Twilight Princess. 2005 dropped a pint-sized GBA Micro in our laps. 2006 floored us with full disclosure on the Wii and Solid Snake appearing in Super Smash Bros. 2007 revealed a dramatic shift with Wii Fit and the Balance Board. We could even go back to the fan-riot reveals of Wind Waker and Metroid Prime. The point is that Nintendo saves something major for E3, whether it’s a triple-A game, a new piece of hardware or a goofy peripheral that baffles gamers but somehow entrances the mainstream. Even with all we know about 2010, it’s what we don’t know that will probably cement Nintendo’s undisputed lead. And while I would love for this “something” to be an online F-Zero with 30 simultaneous racers screaming at 60fps, the true reveal will be far more creative, enchanting or downright bizarre. Wii HD, perhaps?

Next page: five reasons PC will win and our final prediction on the winner


  • Stealtheffect2005 - March 5, 2010 10:06 p.m.

    this article seems a bit too biased to me.
  • Jose22 - February 10, 2010 3:11 a.m.

    pse3 will triumph i have 360 and ps3 but i like better ps3
  • OrionOnyx - February 4, 2010 9:35 p.m.

    I think Project Natal is the main reason why the 360 is going to win... I mean come on, it looks totally kick ass.
  • kikingbird - February 3, 2010 2:14 p.m.

    I personally think that Sony will win. All other systems have their advantages and are fun, but Sony has this year by far.
  • austinite04 - February 3, 2010 10:31 a.m.

    Gamesradar is totally bias... They are in someway controlled by Microsoft so it's no surprise they picked Xbox360.. If you want my honest thoughts on which console will win 2010.. I have to say PS3, for one, the service is free (for now) and not to mention we have exclusives Xbox'er idiots would LOVE to have.. Not to mention we only ever need ONE disc.. 2 or three for Mass effect?? PUHLEASE!! I would rather get the STEAM version on my pc.. At least there on my pc I can play my games in 1080p.. but back to consoles, I am no fanboy of PS3, I did at one time own all current consoles. Now I'm just down to a ps3, simply because I can't live without Netflix and blu-ray's. I hope XBox gets a Blu-ray.. more power to them.. more money for Besides most xbox360 components are in someway or another a sony product.. so we are really just gonna have to go with a all in one with the next gen console, have nintendo,xb720,and ps4 all in one box.. I would pay $2,000 for it... I want all the developers to put console partisan politics aside.. We need to cut costs in this downswing economy.. Sony spent 2 trillion bucks on the ps3.. xb360 came close but not close enough since they still red ring.. the wii is a joke by it's self.. it needs the other consoles. I dream of a day where I can just turn on ONE console and pull up different User interface's.. say I want to play Halo reach I login to the xbox console from a directory system.. and if I want to play Gran turismo, on the fly I should be able to press the menu button (guide,or Home) button and jump right over to the ps4 partition. the same with wii 2.. Whats more, the ps3 is really a beta model for the ps4.. Once the ps4 comes out we will have James Camerons: AVATAR (movie) like game graphics.. It's no pipedream.. 3d was a dream just last year now it's possible. I want an all in one console SO BAD..
  • PharonicDawn - January 31, 2010 1:31 a.m.

    You know, it will be a really close call. I own a Wii and a PC. I do own a PS2 and an original Xbox, along with an N64. For PC, the gameplay will be the ultimate thing. I love my PS2, and have played a PS3. Their wide choice of games is brilliant and fun to choose from. Xbox 360 has some famous games correlated to it, such as the Halo series. Although you can get Halo for PC, Halo: Reach will bury it's competitor's 6 feet under. Nintendo's huge brand name of Pokemon and Mario will put other competitors washing away down the river once their games come out. My winner: PC. The PC, if you have the right equipment for it, will dominate for it's large amount of graphics capacity, game choice, and gameplay. I own MW2, L4D2, the half-Life and Half-Life 2 series. They are all great games with amazing graphics. I can't wait until Starcraft II and SupCom2 come out. Civ IV also dominates for PC. Although Xbox 360 has great brand names, Nintendo great gameplay and brand names, and the PS3 has an amazing graphics, PC wins for me.
  • kallukoras - January 29, 2010 7:46 p.m.

    The wii was an epic fail caus stupid games come out for it and its juts lame, x-box 360 hell yeah but cheap the 3 rings of death, PS3 is there anything that breaks on that? caus i dont remember hearing anything about it..... But i would vote for PC caus those i can fix.
  • JohnnyMaverik - January 29, 2010 12:14 a.m.

    The way I see it for people who are primarily PC gamers (like myself), a 360 is pretty much a pointless aquesition, since most of the games on the 360 end up on pc, and very few of the ones that don't are actually all that desirable (in my opinion), especially in regards to AAA titles. The PS3 however has a fair few titles that aren't and will never be on the pc and are probably better played on a console.
  • teke367 - January 28, 2010 9:52 p.m.

    Uh, was one of the points for the Wii "the opposite is true" of only Nintendo brand games do well? There might be a couple, but the story has consistently been, with few exceptions, that only Nintendo makes money on the Wii. The way I see it, Xbox has Mass Effect 2, Halo reach, Splinter Cell and Fable 3, PS3 has God of War 3, GT5, and heavy rain that will be big hitters. Of course the Wii has any Mario or Zelda game that will be sure to be a big hit. Wii wins if the status quo remains. Xbox wins if they close the gap to #1 in sales (a decent percentage). PS3 wins if they close the gap to Xbox (or sells more for the year at least)
  • twewy13 - January 28, 2010 2:02 a.m.

    Both PS3's and x-box's attempt at motion control will fail and wii motion plus won't. you entered too late in the game sony/microsoft, and natal will suck because you must hold stuff while playing a game, simple as that ( well, if your punching and kicking it wont matter i guess, but shooting and driving...),
  • twewy13 - January 28, 2010 1:57 a.m.

    i seriously thought nintendo would win, thats what i say at least!!! REDSTEEL 2, TVC, AND GALAXY 2!!!!! INCROYABLE!!!!
  • robotechandnarutosucks - January 27, 2010 11:13 p.m.

    funny how you're all fighting over pieces of colored plastic that can play games!
  • familiarrealms - January 27, 2010 9:16 p.m.

    HA HA, its quite funny watching you people bikker about which console is gonna come out on top. If im honest i dont think it really matters which one does. I have a 360 + a PS3 and quite frankly im happy with both. i only got my PS3 the other day and i think this is a factor about why maybe the PS3 might prevail in the end. Xbox have a better game selection, better online community and a better enjoyment factor ( i think). The PS3 however, is getting slowly cheaper. People who wanted one when it was first releases have probably postponed their perchase until the last few months and in the future of this year. The sales are going to rise. Not only that, when Heavy Rain gets releases i think it might well be revolution in the way we look at games. Theres a chance that game might go down in history. I suppose if your happy with your console then your console wins!!
  • 8bitBaby - January 27, 2010 3:39 p.m.

    i'm rooting for 360, but i'm afraid that the wii will come out on top. i just got back from my friends place and both she and her sister just dropped a ton of money on nothing but wii merch. US games AND they bought Japan only games on wii ware. "sigh" i feel betrayed by nintendo.
  • boyverygood011 - January 27, 2010 3:36 p.m.

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  • Kytl - January 27, 2010 3:55 a.m.

    I care about the games not made by Nintendo, but enough of that. I actually starting to think 360 owners might get something cool with Natal, I worry about those children AI and the "interaction" with them. Microsoft, please don't make them too realistic.
  • Yeager1122 - January 27, 2010 3:25 a.m.

    @CLEIP Your taking what i said MUCH TO LITERALLY. I was really just saying that i like both the 360 and ps3 and want wii gone.
  • theBlackKnight - January 27, 2010 1:31 a.m.

    Oh and by the way, how would you aim with a gun that doesn't exist to have a rail or anything?
  • theBlackKnight - January 27, 2010 1:20 a.m.

    Oh my God NO. Natal is just a gimmick to attract the casual gamers which will definately not work, because they all already have the Wii, and nobody actually wants to be waving their arms around on actual games. Also, none of their exclusives will even compare with the PS3's gigantic number of good exclusives. And when they say the Xbox is cheaper than t Ps3, it is NOT. online is 60$ a year. if oou keep it just two years, the Ps3 is already worth the money and you get a Blu- ray player.
  • g4m3rk1dd - January 26, 2010 8:10 p.m.

    i know this has been read but i have added on to it if project natal was given a hardcore game to work with *coughgearsofwarcoughhalocough* that would truely be revolutionary in gaming...hell in technology period on the other hand if nintendo suddenly decided to, as read in an earlier article, go "online" with a game like pokemon...that would VERY rapidly outsell possibly ANYTHING known to man >.> just imagine and and others walking through tall grass finding pokemon or attempting to "raid" and/or capture the more legendary. im willing to bet that even WoW couldnt compete with that is they did every thing right the main thing that i can say i want a PS3 for is if they were to make a FF7 remake...there i said it...its a good counsle with good features but i just cant get myself to buy yet another counsel so i can play the "best" games when alot of the older games for sega gen and sega saturn and others were much better =/ those games are the forefathers of all games and without those we wouldnt have squat

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