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Next gen consoles: Prodding for Modding

Yup! I’m prodding these developers and publishers to finally join the PC family and officially add modding to the next generation consoles (Xbox One, PS4) as a feature. And now that Major Nelson, Director of Programming for Microsoft recently left hints to it being possible I really wanted to launch my campaign.

As a gamer I thought I was never big  on modding, don’t get me wrong  I loved  the concept but it wasn’t a must have feature (bias cause I’m a console gamer maybe?). But I was soooo wrong; I am BIG on modding, when I really looked at it in a small way, I do — or want to do it all the time for various games on my console, let me explain.

The game that really brought me to this realization was the Batman Arkham series. Oh! How I longed to get the mods that would allow me to play as Batman with any batsuit I wanted, especially the movie versions of his suits which is really my greatest want.


PC mod for Batman Arkham City showcasing the movie Batsuit

Can’t lie, I got borderline obsessed with the notion; wanting the mod features beautifully displayed on the PC versions of the game on my console. Watching all those videos and seeing how those modders captured a pretty good interpretation of the Christian Bale/Michael Keaton Batsuits was something I wanted to experience.

To show you how obsessed I was, I think Batman Arkham City released about 8 or so different batsuits — 8-different-batsuits! And I still wanted more…well…as I said I really wanted specific; none currently available were the Movie versions I looked forward to, none really offered that kevlar black that I wanted, accept for the Batman Beyond batsuit but that suit is a totally different suit altogether, no long cape — or cape at all, his face completely covered.

On top of that I tried my best to use the one suit that came closest to giving me that feel but it wasn’t the same, none could accomplish. Modding would have surely solved this issue. It got so bad I almost convinced myself to not play the Batman Arkham games again ( I was losing it y’all! :)) until this issue was resolved. I almost didn’t want to play anymore until I could don the all black batsuit —  again the movie versions. I was making this make believe protest as if Rocksteady (developers of the Batman Arkham series) made some announcement of Batman movie suit DLC  coming soon, or revealed  a date they would be releasing modding tools, lmbooooo. Man! I almost became a PC gamer that night y’all! Just for that one series!

Then I looked at my library of  games, games like Madden  and the WWE titles put things into even more of a perspective. I actually already in some small way mod in those games especially WWE. I am so anal in those games I do my own rosters from top to bottom in Madden’s case from the QB to the Long Snapper. In WWE games if a wrestler is missing from the games’ roster that’s on the real-life roster of WWE I immediately go to the game share options and download an accurate  created superstar from the community, that’s if I’m not confident I could do it myself.

But of course these “mod” options are severely gimped, the developers only release the tools based on templates that already exist — and then gimp  those! Lmboo. But what it does is it leaves a glimmer of  hope that in the future we could have full-fledged modding tools.

Which leads me to the Microsoft news, in which there was a rumor via Reddit about the Xbox One having the capabilities to mod , brought on by a Major Nelson quote, in which he alluded to the new console allowing the feature.  However Microsoft is leaving it up to developers if they want to exercise the option or not, instead of leaving it as an “open platform” that is standard for all games.

Here’s the quote and the question that led to the quote:

Q: (Butterfactory)Now that any Xbox One can be used as a dev kit it is possible for mod support now?

A: (Major Nelson) It’s up to developers to support that. These are two very different things.


To further add to the realistic nature of my request, one gamers’ comment suggested (I don’t how true it is) that the PS3 already has modding capabilities! Then why didn’t Rocksteady give console gamers modding privileges? If true though I shouldn’t be that surprised as referenced by the LilBigPlanet series, a game that showed some of that promise —  if developers choose to do so.

But with all the optimism there is a problem.  While games like Batman Arkham’s future titles don’t seem impossible it is sports games like Madden and WWE that worry me. A game that capitalizes off yearly releases; to mod them you start messing with business. I remember when Madden use to release for the PC, EA said it was because of the “economic climate” that led to the discontinuation of the franchise on that platform, also mentioned was  piracy issues. But I believe they stopped because all modders would’ve did was create their own updated versions of the game and wouldn’t have bought a Madden in years until significant changes were made.

So here’s my prod:

A feature that is generally reserved for PC it is time it came to consoles on a full-time basis. So I urge developers and publishers alike release these modding tools and let the creators create — Us! Especially if it doesn’t affect your business and/or business model.

Do you as a console gamer want to see modding come full-time to consoles too? What’s the first game on your list you would mod or want to see mods for? CCU wants to hear from you.

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One Comment

  1. It would be possible, I think, if the game itself revolved around a mod creation kit. Whatever game that would be made, may be limited on the size of the game itself, but, if the game disc or game download itself was built from the ground up with a mod creation kit as the main part of the game experience, then yes, Console gamers could create to their hearts content. Think about a game that is similar to the RPG Maker series on PS1 and PS2. If I had a team and enough money, then I would find a way to make it happen. RPG Maker was limited on the file size and thus limited the creativity. You could only build a game up to a certain file size before running out of memory. I would like to see another RPG Maker on next gen consoles. Also, if a game company had a team in place, they could moderate the types of mods uploaded to their site. It may not include nude skin mods or other similar things, but I see it as being possible. They could also have an online Console mod community. It all depends on whether or not the game companies are willing to invest the time and money to do so.

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