The Evolution of video game consoles 2000-2021


Courtesy of New York Times

From Xbox 360 to PS5, the 2000s marked a new era of video game technology. As the Covid cases rise and social distancing remains, turning towards gaming, zoom and other forms of entertainment helps one cope with loneliness and struggling mental health. Until circumstances change, Sony and other companies’ innovations will continue to fill the void.

Hannah Luck, Archives Editor

From Xbox 360 to Playstation 4, the world within the last 21 years witnessed a multitude of technological innovations, specifically video games. As the world continues to cope with COVID-19 and the slow vaccine distribution, millions of Americans remain socially isolated, turning towards interactive video games and methods of communication to ease tension. These games provide entertainment and emotional support continues to evolve, making time at home an enjoyable experience. 

2000- Playstation 2

At the dawn of the new Millenium, Sony released the game-changing PlayStation 2, a home video game console. Although first debuted in Japan, the console quickly made its way to America in October of 2000. According to Guinness world records, it sold over 157.68 million over 13 years of sale as the best-selling console ever.  The PS2’s popularity relies on its three-in-one capability completed with Nintendo’s GameCube, Sega Dreamcast, and Microsoft’s original Xbox. This along with the advanced dualshock controller— a controller capable of vibrating feedback stunned the world and marked a new era of gaming.

2005 Xbox 360

Prior to its debut, Microsoft began a promotional campaign with “our colony,” a  virtual club, giving a sneak peek of the product if they completed certain challenges. Released in November of 2005, the Xbox 360 made significant headway as a product that sold over 84 million consoles upon its debut.

The device consisted of the Xbox controller, a new concept at the time that allowed gamers to wirelessly play both single and multiplayer games. With a two trigger button, two shoulder buttons, four face buttons, and other general apparel, the controller allowed for an easy, comfortable play. The console itself contained a memory of 512 MB of GDDR3 RAM clocked at 700 MHz as well as 500 MHz graphics– an accomplishment at the time..

2011 Playstation Vita

After 11 years of the PlayStation 2, Sony released yet another version of the gaming system called the PlayStation vita. Compared to the PS2 the Vita, an entirely portable system consisted of an OLED multi-touch capacitive touchscreen, two analog joysticks for navigating within virtual challenges, front and shoulder push-button input, and wireless capabilities like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Later a revision of the system called the PS Vita series with extended battery life and OLED screen.

2013 Xbox One

The Xbox one released in May of 2013, debuted as the successor of the Xbox 360s and Xbox series in itself. At the time, Microsoft marketed the device as an “all-in-one entertainment system,” hence the name Xbox One. According to Mashable, The Xbox one consists of an Xbox One controller, Kinect camera, HDMI cable, power cable, and power brick. It also comes with a chat headset, an advanced feature perfect for connecting with friends and others across the world.

2020 Playstation 5

After months of political ambiguity and deaths due to a global pandemic, Sony released the PlayStation 5, a necessity during social isolation. The system includes a solid-state drive customized for high-speed data streaming an AMD GPU capable of 4K resolution display at up to 120 frames per second, as well as devices for PlayStation VR and new software within the series.

The last 21 years in terms of video game evolution marked a new era within the gaming world, introducing multiple innovations in display, storage, and interactive capacity. Looking at the year ahead, Microsoft, Sony, and other major corporations lack their future plans. Until conditions improve, the world will continue to live within extenuating circumstances turning towards gaming as a source of ultimate bliss.