The rumor bug seems to have gotten everyone talking about the next big thing in consoles, whether the PS4 or the Xbox 720 (if they name it that I will die a little inside). However, in a generation where content is built upon consistently through downloading, and frankly one where the games already look phenomenal, what will this mean for backwards compatibility.
The 360 and PS3 both severely dropped the ball when it came to this. The 360 having fairly shoddy software emulation for an extremely selective, and often-times questionable list of games (Barbie games and not Stranger's Wrath?) and the PS3 just ended up dropping it completely to shave costs. The question I want answered the most, which while it's still even early to ask it with no tangible information out about the next consoles from Sony and Microsoft, what will you do with all these games I own, both downloaded and hard-copy, and all the subsequent downloaded content I have for them?
Will both companies implement some sort of "cloud" service for these old games, will we be able to transfer and play them on the new machines as-is? I can easily see this subject making or breaking these consoles if it isn't addressed logically, and responsibly. While I can't say I have any intention to get rid of my 360 the day the next one hits, there's something to be said about your console being able to play the previous ones library and still support what has been an extremely long console generation of added content.