An irrational apprehension of the inevitable
a console gamer on his relunctance to dip his toes into the PC gaming pool


As you may or may not be aware, i am and have always been a console gamer. From my first exposure to Super Mario Bros. on the NES, my gaming history has almost entirely been console centric. As the years have gone by it has become increasingly more difficult to continue ignoring the other major platform - the PC. Whilst i am not ready to dip my toes into that pool just yet, i feel that my days of purely console based gaming are numbered.

Whilst i no doubt missed out on many PC classics in the days prior to this console generation, it hasn't really bothered me until recently. Initially, the simplicity of the consoles was a major factor in shaping my gaming habits - the idea of just putting a game into the machine and playing was far more preferable than a computer illiterate like myself trying to make sense of files, settings, hardware and all the other variables inherent in PC gaming. Furthermore, after cutting my teeth on gamepads my entire life, the keyboard/mouse control set up has continued to be something i am seemingly unable to get a feel for. Despite the countless people who swear by that control method for its accuracy and speed, i still cannot wrap my head around it - something about it just feels alien to me.



Nowadays, it seems that many PC gamers will often use a gamepad for certain titles even if the other option is available. This recent shift has at least partially knocked down one of my biggest hurdles, and recent industry developments suggest to me that the controller as an entity is here to stay even on the PC. The other trend which has recently caught my hitherto skeptical eye is the increasing focus on bringing the PC experience to the lounge room. From upstarts such as Ouya, to the "Steam Box" type devices, all signs point to a simplified PC type experience in future that will allow people in my position to play with an input device that does not alienate likeminded gamers - with the added bonus of not having to hunch over uncomfortably in front of a computer for long stretches.

As the current generation has progressed, i have been hearing the echoes of many a multiplatform gamer slowly veering towards a preference for playing on the PC. Even from my biased as hell viewpoint, its not hard to see why. At this point in time, more and more multiplatform titles are being recommended more heavily on the PC - from modding games, to superior visuals (especially recently) to more options for customisation, it is little mystery to me as to why this might be the case. In addition, as the years have gone by i have become increasingly envious of those who regularly partake in promotions such as the Steam sales. Outside of fluke purchases from second hand bargain bins, this is something ultra appealing that i have so far been unable to personally relate to.



Another factor which has seemingly found a home with the PC is the indie game scene. Granted, there haven't been a ton of things which have caught my focused attention as of yet, but the fact that indies are in the midst of a massive renaissance at present is just another reason that i feel i might be missing out on something. Whilst there have been the occasional waves made on PSN and XBLA, the majority of the attention industry wide definitely seems to show more of a deference to what is happening on the PC - in fact, i recall a period of time a couple of months back where it seemed that every gaming podcast i listened to was talking about Faster Than Light and nothing else. I think it would be fair to say that the indie scene is going to be at the forefront of innovation with regard to gameplay systems for some time to come, given how much of a financial risk any console release is nowadays.

I love my consoles - my entire interactive history is tightly wrapped up with them. However, whilst the PC might be a platform that i still find somewhat intimidating, i think i would be a fool to suggest that i can avoid taking the plunge for much longer. I am certain that the consoles, too will experience a 'shot in the arm' come the release of next gen systems, but it is blatantly clear which way the wind is blowing.
Posted 14/02/2013
SPastic 867 XP
Melbourne

An irrational apprehension of the inevitable Comments

  • FOD 203 XP 15/02/2013
    A handheld controller is much cheaper to replace then a pc when i rage. [Rage]
  • M@ndyz 239253 XP 15/02/2013 +1
    get a small couch too.. would you believe i sit on a couch when i play my PC which is hooked up to a big tv or i can simply hook it up to a monitor as well if i want to. Its comfy.. and the amount of money youll save/spend when theres a steam sale... [MOG]

    keyboard on my lap.. or get a coffee table that moves like mine.. possibilities are endless
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  • 1wiierdguy 7008 XP 15/02/2013
    I have not gamed on PC since the first Voodoo graphics cards hit. Even though I'm sure it's all streamlined and user friendly now, I'm still just not interested in PC. Consoles are just simple plug and play. I'm not a graphics whore and am perfectly happy with what consoles produce. Maybe a device like Steambox will change my mind. Guess we'll find out soon enough.
  • Silence 79953 XP 17/02/2013

    1wiierdguy said: Consoles are just simple plug and play.


    That's becoming less and less true with every generation, unfortunately. It's a shame too, as I find the apparent simplicity of a console to be its best feature.
  • Doles 36809 XP 20/02/2013 +1

    FOD said: A handheld controller is much cheaper to replace then a pc when i rage.


    *isn't, *new keyboard

    PC gamer advocate here. Although I believe all platforms can exist together and compliment each other, there is so much more you can do with a PC beyond gaming
  • abujaffer 14339 XP 20/02/2013
    I feel like the "simplicity" of console gaming is a bit of a throwup, depending on the point of view. I find it more tiresome to turn on my xbox, put in the game I want, then turn on my game, and then start playing; with my pc, it's almost always on (for work/studying), so that's a non-issue, and all my games are listed right there. Even the whole, "I can't be bothered with drivers/whatnot" argument is becoming invalid, as console titles require updates every day it seems, while Steam does all its updates in the background (I haven't had to wait for an update on Steam for months now, but I've had to update my 360 titles 3-4 times since the start of February).

    Of course, the fact that you can buy any console game and guarantee it'll work is nice, but nowadays the same can be said about PC's; a (when purchased) $500 4-year-old desktop can still run every game out there on medium-high and up (including the taxing games like Shogun and GTA). A $100 update (after selling the old graphics card) leads to high-max on all titles today, which is phenomenal. All of that, and you have a... well, a computer. A laptop (portability) that can be purchased for $1000 can run Battlefield 3 on maximum (~35 FPS), among every other game out there on high-max. ;)
  • SPastic 867 XP 20/02/2013
    that kinda surprises me - not that i would know, but i was expecting high end PC gaming to require a much larger investment?
  • maxiboy 30374 XP 03/03/2013

    SPastic said: that kinda surprises me - not that i would know, but i was expecting high end PC gaming to require a much larger investment?



    Yeah you can get a lot for your money these days
  • MX_Xizz0R 3458 XP 27/03/2013
    The way I see it pc gaming is like crack, you are kinda hesitant at first, then you are hooked. Steam sales are especially cracky. Origin is like drinking alot of cough syrup its not actually all that great then you question why you did it.

    Doles said:

    FOD said: A handheld controller is much cheaper to replace then a pc when i rage.


    *isn't, *new keyboard
    PC gamer advocate here. Although I believe all platforms can exist together and compliment each other, there is so much more you can do with a PC beyond gaming



    yeah a PS3 controller is around $50-70, you can get a wireless keyboard that comes with a mouse at $29
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