LG OLED TV: $10,000 Hi-Def Television Could Be Bad News For Gamers


LG, or the company known in the television technology circles as “not Samsung or Sony,” has started taking preorders for the world’s first large-sized OLED TV. Weighing in at 22 pounds with a thickness of 4 millimeters, the 55-inch behemoth costs over $10k and is expected to outdo all current televisions. And that is why gamers should be afraid.

OLED, or organic light-emitting diodes, allow for improved image quality and greater color contrasts than the standard LED televisions. LG and fellow-South Korean competitor Samsung had both previously claimed to unveil new OLED televisions last year, although neither was able to release one in 2012.

Looking at this, it is easy to start despising current technology. Imagine using this television to play an Xbox 720 or a PlayStation 4, complete with the resolutions that will hopefully put current consoles to shame. However, is the potential for that advancement actually a net positive for gamers, or should we start fearing the inevitable picketing?

In light of recent events, the video game industry has been the target of criticism from both ends of the political spectrum. While people own instruments of violence in real life, violence in video games is being frowned upon. And, for the sake of honesty, it should be stated that the violence in video games is actually more intense than most people can imagine. And this new television shows us just how much more advanced picture quality can become. Because video game developers are not going to back down, graphic violence will only evolve.

For example, prior to the release of the recent Mortal Kombat, quite possibly the most criticized video game series in the history of the industry, creator Ed Boon Tweeted, “Motion capturing special moves & fatalities today... they are kind of sick!!," and “Carlos & Rick O. doin some kool fatalities. I hope we aren't taking these too far. :(.”

The game ultimately shipped with an M-for-Mature ESRB rating, the highest rating at which major retailers accept games, but is still (legitimately) cited as an example of intense violence in the video game industry. If Boon’s attitude is any indication, both gamers and developers revel in the violence rather than shying away from it.

Personally, I have always played violent video games, including the one I have just mentioned, so I will not say I am against them. My larger concern is that this television, and all the opportunities similar advances may allow, might fuel the anti-video game fire that seems to have become a part of the culture.

Either way, fortune-telling is not my forte; technological recommendations, on the other hand, are. So, to anyone already salivating over the prospect of purchasing this television, remember that even LED televisions sold for exorbitant prices upon initial release. Therefore, by simply waiting until LG is not the only one with such a product on the market, you can effectively “beat the price.” Whether you want to expose your eyes to even more gloriously rendered violence is one thing; spending extra money to do so is quite another.

The OLED television will be available in South Korea next month with releases planned in North America, Europe and the rest of Asia before March.