EA's Riccitiello defends Wii U, proclaims previous console cycles dead.

EA CEO John Riccitiello

Remember the good old days when you could count on camping out for a new console at least once every five years?  Those days may be gone.  In a recent interview with James Brightman at industrygamers.com, EA CEO John Riccitiello declared the old console cycle dead and if you read his statements below, it appears that if given the opportunity, Mr. EA would be happy to personally deliver the final nail to that coffin.

“I would argue that one of the least interesting things about the games industry was that every five years you’d see a new console or platform from everybody at about the same time with about the same or similar upgrades or services…But it’s not a particularly smart way to run an industry…bulges in technology investment followed by harvest.  And let’s be realistic.  Consoles used to be 80% of the industry as recently as 2000.  Consoles today are 40% of the game industry…”

He used those startling statistics as a lead-in to his defense of Nintendo:

“So I think that the pattern against which Nintendo is no longer resonating is over anyway.  The idea that we’re going to see the need for step function growth in graphic performance as the pace setting aspect of the sector is no longer the most important thing…Our fastest growing platform is the iPad right now and that didn’t exist 18 months ago.  So the idea that we’re categorizing the industry as being [cyclical].  Nintendo is off cycle with what?  I mean, the point of reference is gone.”

Riccitiello also claimed that the uncanny valley is a thing of the past and that the difference between 720p and 1080p is nearly negligible.  While not blazing a new path as Sony has been touting a 10 year life cycle as far back as the PS2, the statement regarding consoles current place in the gaming market goes further to reinforce his company’s billion dollar acquisition of PopCap as EA attempts to gain a stronger foothold in the growing casual market, specifically the iPad. 

So what say you, Nightmare Mode reader?  Are you in a hurry to see next-gen consoles?  Or is Riccitiello attempting the sway the market to stay as is for as long as possible in order for EA to see a substantial return on its PopCap purchase?  Share your opinion in the comments below!  Also, you can also read the interview in its entirety here.