Consumers will win the next-gen console war, says GameStop president

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LOS ANGELES — Ever since Sony and Microsoft took to the stage earlier this year to announce their newest video game consoles, people all over the Internet have debated which company will win the next so-called “console war.” But Tony Bartel, the president of retailer GameStop, believes consumers will be the next generation’s real winners.

“You got three systems that the consumer has a choice with,” he recently told GamesBeat at the Electronic Entertainment Expo. “And I think there’s unprecedented innovation that’s taking place right now, and game developers seem to be, based on our discussion with them, seem to be further ahead from a development perspective for the new platforms than they were last generation.”

Bartel is expecting innovations in gameplay as well as massive developments in the consoles themselves, and he ultimately believes consumers will reap the benefits. He also thinks gamers shouldn’t overlook Nintendo’s Wii U during the next-generation console arms race.

“What we’ve always talked about on the Wii U is they need first-party big titles, which they talked about. All three — the Zeldas, Super Smash Bros., and Mario Kart — they talked about all those,” he said.

“They’re coming out with their big guns.”