Coffee Talk #154: Best Addition to Gaming in the Last Five Years?

Gaming evolves at a ridiculous pace. Thinking about the videogames I played as a kid and what I play now…it’s just crazy! The improvements made in the last couple of years — just a few years! — are also impressive. Today I’d like to know what your favorite gaming innovation is from the last five years.

Welcome to Coffee Talk! Let’s start off the day by discussing whatever is on your (nerd chic) mind. Every morning I’ll kick off a discussion and I’m counting on you to participate in it. If you’re not feelin’ my topic, feel free to start a chat with your fellow readers and see where it takes you. Whether you’re talking about videogames, having a perfect game ruined by a bad call, Japan’s prime minister resigning and asking people to keep following him on Twitter, or the possibility of foul play in Gary Coleman’s death, Coffee Talk is the place to do it.

Gaming evolves at a ridiculous pace. Thinking about the videogames I played as a kid and what I play now…it’s just crazy! The improvements made in the last couple of years — just a few years! — are also impressive. Today I’d like to know what your favorite gaming innovation is from the last five years.

For me it’s definitely digital downloads. I love that I can download games for $5 to $10. Whether it’s a board game, a new arcade title, or a treasured classic, making impulse purchases from the comfort of my couch is just powerful and awesome (and sometimes financially dangerous). Before digital downloads proliferated, I had to order games or go to a store — often spending at least $40 for a title. The cheapness and immediacy of digital downloads rule!

So how about it? In your opinion, what’s the best thing that’s happened to gaming in the last five years?

Author: RPadTV

43 thoughts on “Coffee Talk #154: Best Addition to Gaming in the Last Five Years?”

  1. HD and wireless controllers…also integrated HDD.

    Once I can use my digital purchases on multiple devices, i'll have to include them…until that time comes…I keep those purchases to a minimum.

  2. @ Topic

    I like what both SG and Rpad have stated. Im just going to jump on it with SG and say HD and wireless. One of the best gaming innovations of all time hands down was the original duel shock controller. Built in rumble and thumb sticks are still standard and awesome (except that for that other console which has a variation of that)!

  3. i know online gaming has been around since earlier than 2005 but i didn't start until maybe 2006 or 2007 when i got my wireless router but i've loved this for awhile. Sure it takes away from playing at my friends house but some of them are either too busy to play during normal hours i.e. kids or work or have moved away. It's a great way to still keep in touch with them and still pwn them.

    @Jim Joyce

    I hope the Detroit fans boo him when he takes the field in a couple of hours. He's calling the game as the home plate umpire.

    @Gary Coleman death conspiracy

    Really? someone wanted to kill Arnold Jackson?! I bet it was the Gooch (sp?) he came back to finish the job.

  4. Definately the HD and wireless controls. Digital downloads are…. ok. I mean they're a good idea, it just bothers me a little lol even though it shouldn't lol.

  5. Oh and being able to use the internet on consoles. That's a fun and lazy way to spend time on the couch ^^

  6. Actual Story telling. I usually just play through games and skip all of the cut-scenes. Halo was the first one I remember loving the story and most recently Uncharted series.

    Destructible Environments. Red Faction did great thing with the original Geomod Engine but no one else did it until Bad Company. For some reason I like the destruction in Bad Comany 2 over Red Faction Guerrilla.

    Smart(er) Enemies. Wolfenstein 3D was like pacman. The guys always followed set paths. No the game can be different each play through on different difficulties. Also they take cover when you shoot at them.

    Control config. Adjusting thumbstick sensitivity, inverting controls, changing button layouts

  7. @Gary Coleman

    Arnold did it, he felt threatened for any and all future governor elections…check his alibi, it'll be a thin one…


    I do really like digital downloads (hate the DRM that has reared its ugly head, but that was a different thread) but I think that what I like most about the past 5 years in gaming is that it feels like it is getting better in the sense of other people's perceptions. You can easily find a list of celebrities who admit that they game, Mr. T and Ozzy even appeared in WoW commercials. Prince of Persia was just taken from a video game to a movie that actually got a lot of attention from Hollywood (which has plenty of sway over people). Games are becoming acceptable forms of entertainment for all people. It is becoming normal, and while I will always be the type of person to not want something that I love to become mainstream and popular. It is good for the industry, and can be good for the quality of games- those are always positives in my opinion.

  8. My absolute FAVORITE addition to gaming… is you guys (and girl) and

    We didn't have communities like we have now growing up. I learn loads from the articles and even more from the comments. Especially when we get in to contrasting opinions.

    I know for a fact that I spend more time on than I do playing games. Even though this last week has had me hooked on RDR, it doesn't matter. My computer is always on.

  9. @SlickyFats

    Along with the enemies actually taking cover when you fire at them, your AI teammates also like to conveniently get in your way and get shot with friendly fire…damn Zoey, Bill, and Louis…lol

  10. @bsu

    Yeah AI isnt perfect but it is much better than before. My biggest pet peeve where AI is involved is generally escort missions. I just want them to stay put and let me go wipe everything out and then you can come with me. Don't run in with me and stand there and make me protect you.

  11. @N8R

    Ah. Thanks. And you are right. I spend more time here with y'all than I do on my consoles.

  12. @Slicky

    Yeah escort missions are horrible. Right now what is killing me is L4D2 the AI seems to be so sporadic on when it wants to move, and sometimes I really would like them to lead just a little bit and not only move to follow me once I start to get attacked and I'm already low on health while trying to get an achievement for carrying the gnome to the end of the level and can really only use melee…I'm not ranting or anything about a real scenario that happened recently or anything…

    haha. AI is still annoying, but you are right is much better than before.

  13. @bsu

    L4D2 is killing me too. I was playing with a friend and the AI always follows where I go and not him. So if I back track for ammo and he doesn't come with then he is alone.

    Also why can't any of the AI carry and dang gas can? I mean seriously why do I have to get them all.

  14. a few people hit the nail on the head but for me it was definitely HD. in fact I only bought an HDTV when Xbox 360 came out, because I don't watch a ton of TV really. so gaming brought me in to the HD era.

    digital downloads have proved to be good and bad for the industry, I'd like to see them improve over the next few years.

    much as I hate to say it the wii has changed gaming forever in the last 4-5 years.

    and I too am very thankful to have wireless controllers that actually work these days. I literally bought a wired controller when I got my xbox because I didn't trust the wireless that came with. I use the wired for computer gaming now so it's all good.

  15. Oh how about Demos. I love downloading and playing all demos. I even download sports games that I would never dream of buying. They have sold me on some games, but moreover I just like playing them.

  16. @Slicky

    Yeah that is annoying too, they don't use the pipe bombs, bile bombs, molotovs, gas cans, or porpane tanks. They shoot to defend themselves and sometimes to defend me. The following function that they perform is also annoying just in single player, I haven't played this one online yet but I'm sure the scenario you mentioned too would be really bad.


    The wireless controllers that always work are nice, yes. Now I just need a rechargeable battery pack to be consistent and actually work for more than a month for once.

  17. So Blockbuster is now trying a mail in game service, only its $9 per rental rather than $9 for the month, I don't really see this doing well, but for those people who wanted MAG from blockbuster there is a way of getting it. '

    ::On Topic::

    Hard drive for sure were the biggest editions. Memory cards for the ps2 cost me at least $150 alone.

  18. @tokz

    Yeah it should be. Just started like last week. I got the fallout GOTY edition because I am too cheap to pay for the DLC.

  19. @ N8R

    I didn't even think of that one guru. I to spend more time on than actual game playing. I LOVE OUR COMMUNITY!!!

  20. @arguello

    Is this available online? or is this something you do in the store? I saw something in the store the other day when i was looking for RDR. One of the boxes said "not finding the game you were looking for" "Ask an associate at the front desk how to get it sent to your home."

  21. The best addition: HD

    The worst addition: DLC

    I would also like to add Blu-Ray to the list of best additions too.

  22. @tokz

    When I was ready all the rules and regulations about it I'm pretty sure I read something about being able to call in to order it. I'm passing work right now. Give me 10-15 minutes and I'll let you know.

  23. @ Rrod and all

    I agree with the Blu ray to an extent. I think once Blu ray becomes the standard for gaming the price of games will skyrocket. I have a friend on XBL in Australia and they already pay $120 per game. Think about it, I think the only reason PS3 games aren't $100 or more is because most of the games are multiplatform and ported from DVD. A $100 game on DVD can not be justified unless it came with like 6 or 7 disks, but blu ray negates having all those disks and there fore can charge more money for more space and more HD goodness.

  24. @Big Blak

    Blu-Ray is just a disc that holds much more space than a DVD. I don't understand how Blu-Ray will make the price of games skyrocket.

  25. @ Rrod

    Right that is my theory as a money hungry CEO (not as a gamer), more space = more time in development = consumers paying more. Only if blu ray becomes the standard for all consoles.

  26. @ N8R;

    Awwww, that's sho shweet! We all love you too, man. I'd have to say online console connectivity, the online growth of the gaming community and integrated hard drives in consoles are all right up there as the best things to happen to gaming in the last five years. I also love the greatly improved graphics, HD gaming, and adult themes. It has helped to mature the market and get it out of that "for kids only" phase.

    DLC is a double-edged sword, and I'll tell you why tomorrow.


  27. @tokz

    I call false. According to the link Activision is a part of it and I don't see them releasing an exclusive much less an improved version lol.

    If it pans out though, I'd have to buy the wireless GC controller

  28. @smartguy

    maybe exclusive for a couple of months then all platforms. I'm so glad my gc wavebird is still goinf strong.

  29. @ Tokz;

    Nah, you don't have to pay me $1; Why? Do I look like EA to you? Actually, if I was EA, I would charge you $60 to read Mr. Padilla's opinion, and then charge an extra $10 to anyone you forward his opinion to.

    That Wii Goldeneye thing has got to be a fake. I seriously doubt that Nintendo would be able to pull it off or even want to pull it off. All the demand for that game now is nostalgic. It's a part of our childhood we want to relive. Goldeneye was a groundbreaking game, but it has aged terribly over the years, even with updated graphics, it would never sell well with any gamer under 21 years of age. They won't see the game as we saw the game back in the day simply because there have been oodles of games that have come out since then that have eclipsed Goldeneye.

    Sorry to be a buzzkill.


  30. @Topic

    I'm going to go with N8R on this one.

    @Rumble and analog sticks

    Thank you Nintendo for bringing us these very much appreciated inventions. Yeah, not many people realize that you brought these to gaming when everyone else thought they were lame ideas, but the industry wouldn't be where it is today if it were not for you.

  31. @Goldeneye

    I still have two N64's and a copy of Goldeneye for that system with at least four controllers. And if my system goes out, then I have my dad's and two friends with N64's…so I will stick with actually playing the original version and pwning with proximity mines in the temple.

  32. Why did I just see Olivia Munn on The Daily Show as a correspondent? Did I miss something?


  33. @iceman

    you marlins fans are gonna have a guy named michael stanton whos about to come up…dude has RIDICULOUS power, im jealous

    but im an orioles fan and we will never win another world series, i know this already

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