The graphics debate always rages, especially when new, more powerful consoles hit the market.
There are those who will immediately say, "graphics don't matter" but quite frankly, those people are idiots. We're talking about an entertainment medium that relies heavily on the visual element at all times, so yeah, graphics matter. They just don't matter more than gameplay, which is the most important factor in any interactive experience.
The question is, do better graphics always make for a more immersive, more rewarding gaming experience? I guess if you approached the question logically, you could do this: Make a clone of any game on earth. Everything about each game is identical, with the exception of the graphics; one has a little better visual presentation overall. What sort of fool would take the one with the lesser graphics and pretend it doesn't matter?
But it's a little more complicated than that, isn't it? For instance, I love playing Grand Theft Auto: Vice City every now and then. I just love the ambiance and atmosphere; I get a kick out of the '80s vibe. However, I would not want those old-fashioned graphics to be upgraded; for some reason, I think the game would lose a lot of its charm. Yes, some of that is nostalgia talking, but it's not all nostalgia. It's almost like that game was built for rag-doll physics and washed-out pastel colors.
Perhaps there are cases where lesser graphical quality actually contributes to the fun factor, huh? I dunno…I think I opened up Pandora's Box with this one. 😉