Over the years we’ve all heard the numerous debates for PC VS Console, with each camp having loads upon loads of reasons as to why you should choose one over the other, however as technology has advanced, the ways we play games have also changed, and in a lot of ways for the better for both PC and console.
Oh wait, before we go any further I’d like to note that this article’s intended purpose is not to serve as flame bait for PC elitist types that want a reason to bash their console brethren. What It should serve to do is shine some light on some misconceptions and educate you the reader.
If you’re looking for a flame war please don’t bother…..all comments are moderated.
OK, now that that’s out of the way let’s get started…….
Competent Gaming PCs don’t cost as much as you may think
One of the biggest misconceptions about PC gaming is that one is required to spend loads of money to acquire a PC in which they can use for the purpose of gaming, and couple years ago that may have been true, but now with the drop in prices for computer components, that is far from the truth. PCs these days can cost as low as a console, and still offer pretty decent gaming capabilities. It should also be noted that a majority of the PC gaming community do not own those super high end rigs that none PC gamers assume we all have, but in fact most have mid range systems that are also not built in just one go, but over a period time through incremental updates.…..and this is what makes the PC so great. It’s totally scalable as a gaming platform. Allowing for anyone to enter at any level, but not restricting them to remain at that level.
Pro Tip: One of the most helpful things I learnt over my many years as a PC gamer is that AMD is probably the entry level adopter’s best friend. They offer many great components in the CPU and GPU range which are very affordable and usually do not require the end user to replace their motherboard if/when they upgrade.
You have infinite of control options
One of the most ridiculous misconceptions that I still hear some misinformed console fans spout, is that they don’t want to play on PC because they prefer their controller on their console of choice. Well I’m gonna burst that bubble right now for those of you that don’t already know it. The PC is capable of using any control scheme you deem fit, including but not restricted to; Keyboard+mouse, Steam controller, Xbox One & Xbox 360 controllers, Logitech controllers, PS3 & PS4 controllers and so much more… and here’s one of the best parts about this. You can use any configuration of these different controllers at the same time. Which means that one mate that pops over for a game of FIFA and Street Fighter has no excuse this time as to why you kicked his royal highney.
The huge catalogue
With the option for any controller you deem worthy, it should come as no surprise that the PC also has the largest catalogue of games of any platform available today and it’s always growing. These games are available via a plethora of distribution services.
Starting with the least popular option, Origin. On it you can find lot of great titles including the FIFA franchise, MIrror’s Edge, Mass Effect, Dragon Age, NFS, etc. Then you have GOG, everyone’s favorite DRM free distributor by the awesome folks at CD Projekt Red (The Witcher Developers, then you have Microsoft’s Xbox app which allows you to download some Xbox exclusive titles like Killer instinct, and soon Forza Horizon 3 and Gears along with a couple others that Microsoft announced at their E3 2016 conference.
……and yes I know about UPlay and all the others, but they’re not necessarily places people use.. they’re just there as annoying DRM to annoy gamers who buy their games on other services… Pro Tip: avoid purchasing anything on UPlay.
The last and probably most important video game distributor on PC is Steam, the king of digital distributors on PC, Mac, Linux, and Steam OS. With it installed on our PC you can experience all the comforts of console life including Achievements, Group chat, online video streaming, Game capture, Reviews, customizable gamer profiles, Demos, and pretty much any non-exclusive title including the likes of COD, most of Namco bandai’s new franchises, NBA 2K, All things telltales, NIS America titles, visual novels …. look who am I kidding, just check for yourself and you tell me what’s not their: http://store.steampowered.com/
So much right?
Well it doesn’t end there!
Steam also has more features that consoles don’t. Features like its mouse and keyboard friendly mode and a controller friendly mode (Big Picture), as well as community forums, Mods, a market place place whereby users can sell tradable items on their accounts and Steam GreenLight, a feature that allows the user base to vote on upcoming indie IPS vying for a spot on the online store. Features like these allow the user-base to be as involved with the platform and the games they like as much as they want.
There’s also the option to use in home streaming, which allows you to place you PC in any conventional location you desire, and then stream your games from it to any device on your home network that can run steam. The device can be a sucky laptop or set-top box connected to your tele. As long as it can connect to your network and run steam you can stream your games to it, then play them in full quality with controller/ Keyboard+mouse support. So couch gamers don’t have to worry, just buy a cheap device and connect it to the tele in your gaming room and let the streaming begin.
Oh, and if this all seems like to much for you, remember It’s all optional, meaning you don’t need to use any of it. Its just there if you want it, and that’s one of the best things about gaming on PC, it’s the options it provides.
Options like where you buy your games
On PSN or Xbox live it’s uncommon to find much options when buying digitally outside of maybe amazon, but on PC you can choose where you want to buy your titles most of the time. Which means there is a competitive market that really benefits you the consumer.
Wait, you don’t know how this benefits you?
Sales, Sales, Sales. Having a competitive market means that more and more distributors are willing to cut prices, especially when it’s all digital products and so they don’t really lose anything by dropping prices. Its something we see all the time on the PC via distributors like Steam, Green Man Gaming, Humble bundle, G2A and many others. These services allow you to buy game keys wherever you like and then redeem them on Steam, or Origin.
Pro Tip: Buy Bundles whenever possible.They allow you to get numerous games from as low as $1, and while you’re at it make sure to keep this site in your bookmark bar at all times: https://www.cheapshark.com/
So what did we learn?
Well, lets see….
A gaming PC is affordable…..
There are lots of options for controls….
Tons of games…..
Great Prices, and sales on games all year round…
hmm…. am I missing anything?
Oh crud I almost forgot. The PC is future proof. All your games that work now will still work on future PCs and no need to worry about drivers, patches and all that other stuff… services like Steam, Windows updates, AMD crimson, and NVidia Experience pretty much handle most of that tricky stuff for you now, so all you’re left to do is enjoy your games.
Final Pro Tip: If you still prefer consoles, well that’s still pretty cool, I have consoles too and I like them just as much as my PC, especially now that they are using similar architecture and becoming more and more alike in more ways then I can count.