Consoles – A PC Gamers Perspective

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PCgamer.jpg

By Hennie De Beer

I’m a PC gamer, I always have been and I guess I always will be. Consoles, to me, have always been a big no no. They never appealed to me, the games on offer never really satisfied my curiosity, with the exception of a few titles, the Grand Theft Auto franchise being a perfect example. I always preferred to play my games on a computer screen than a television. It just wasn’t the same for me, and being an FPS and RTS fan, the controls never appealed to me either.

Being a PC gamer meant that I always had to upgrade my PC to be able to play the latest titles available. That started to irritate me . I mean, I would, for example, buy a graphics card today only to have it become obsolete within a year. But at the time I didn’t feel that there was any alternative, so I just pressed on.

That all changed when the new next generation consoles started to make an appearance. The graphic quality was out of this world, even on a normal television. My first experience on a next-gen console was playing Gears of War co-op on a friends Xbox 360. Man was I surprised, the controls were brilliant, the graphics ruled and the overall gameplay totally blew my mind. I started looking into getting one myself. I mean here was a manner in which to play almost all the latest games for at least the next five years, without having to spend additional sums of money on upgrading my system in order to play the game at full graphics. That was the single most important factor to me when I was considering purchasing a console. Money.

After mulling it over, and saving up I might add, I finally purchased myself a console , an Xbox 360. When I bought my Xbox, the war between HD-DVD and Blu-Ray was still being fought and no one knew exactly which format was going to win. I thought what the hell and bought a 360, plus the fact that at the time the PS3 was almost twice the price of a premium 360 also played a role.

Believe me I was over the moon. The machine ran graphics I only dreamed about on my pc, plus I was able to connect with my friends over LAN, something else that helped me in my decision to buy a console. Sure the controls were something I had to get used to , but that was a small price to pay for the experience I got in the games I played. I thought I would be set for a long time. Yeah right.

Since my purchase the whole Blu-Ray HD-DVD question has been settled with Blu-ray winning the day and the PS3 has nearly halved in price. Now I am thinking maybe I acted too hastily. Don’t get me wrong the 360 is a great console, but I just think that I should have waited a bit longer before making a final decision on whether or not to buy a console and which one to buy. I mean when you buy a 360 you buy a great next generation console, but when you buy a PS3, not only are you buying a next-gen console but you are also buying a Blu-Ray player too. Enough said.

Looking at it from a PC gamers perspective, both consoles look pretty much the same. Both promise next – gen graphics in high definition coupled with unparalleled gaming experiences to everyone willing to fork out the money to buy one. The controls do take getting used to, but once you’ve got the basics down the rest is just practice. Even a RTS title like C&C 3 plays great on a console. I found this to be quite surprising considering the fact that RTS titles seemed only playable if one had access to a keyboard and mouse setup as you would find on the PC.

Now I bought a 360 over a year ago and I am not disappointed, but if I knew then what I know now I would probably have waited for the price to drop and rather gotten myself a PS3, simply because it comes standard with a Blu-Ray player and I wouldn’t have to go and spend even more money to get a standalone player as is the case now.

In case you’re wondering, yes I did upgrade my PC again to stay ahead of the curve, and I do not regret it one little bit. I am after all first and foremost a PC gamer.

Last Updated: June 18, 2008

Nick De Bruyne

Video games writer, editor and critic since ’08. Living and breathing video games, movies and cars since the 80s. Follow me on Twitter if you love tons of gaming talk, and @pennyworthrevs for fun stuff and links.

  • Chevron

    I was waiting for the section were he would start moaning about the price of console games.

    At musica Rachet and clank for ps3 is R700, Mass Effect pc is R350.

    Sigh.

  • Fox1

    You can get games for the 360 from R149 πŸ˜‰

  • David

    I also used to be a PC gamer but once I got the xbox 360 ….well it ROCKED MY WORLD OVER. I hated tha fact that you basically had to buy a new graphics card for just about every new game you bought for PC very frustrating .. Long live PS3 and Xbox 360 and Wii well not so much the Wii. ha ha

  • Fred

    Can linux games run on ps3 once you have that loaded?

  • David

    πŸ˜‰

  • David

    Oh and people don’t judge a console by its disk but by its power ha ha ha 😈

  • Lupus

    How could you say your decision was Hasty? The PS3’s price has not dropped while the 360 can be picked up for R1700-R1999 which is R300 to 500 more expensive then a PS2?
    Also having a blu-ray player built into your console is still not a benefit unless Blu-ray definitely takes over from DVD. PS2 having the DVD rom drive built in was a fantastic idea as DVD was a standard. Blu-ray still has a while to go before it’s a household item. Don’t regret getting the 360 it is an awesome console that still has more games then the PS3.

  • Chevron

    Well you can get (legal)pc games for R50.

    You have to compare new release to new release.

    All those guys that buy a new gfx every year do that because they want to.

    A decent GFX card should lat you 2years. If not you don’t know how to buy.

    How is it that that even psp games are R500?

    Like wow.

    I have a psp by the way, but I’d rather buy orange box for R350 than chains of olympus for R500 anyday.

  • LazySAGamer

    Apparently not since the PS3 doesn’t allow Linux to access the GPU… but I haven’t personally tried it so I could be way off…

  • I also used to be a PC games, but moved to consoles after getting fed up with the effort and cost of keeping up. Now I can just buy a game, put it in the console and play. happy days.

  • Fred

    Googled it , not possible , no accellerated gfx like you said.

  • HornyRob

    PC gamers all go through the same pain with just about each new release: Install the game, get crap frame rates, download the latest drivers & firmware, get crap frame rates, buy a new GFX card, get better frame rates but silly load times, invest in more RAM, get faster load times… It never really ends. Sure, I’ve made it sound worse than it is – a really good rig should set you up for at least a couple of months of carefree installations, but eventually the need for speed will get you too. It always does.

    Now on a console, you pay your exorbitant money for a new release, unwrap it, plonk it in the drive and start playing. If you’re on a 360, you can play against your friends over the net immediately – no stupid settings or downloading more pointless software either. The games all just work.

    Sure, you pay more for them – but at least a console will set you back as little as R2k these days (XBox360 Arcade), while a good gaming PC will cost four times that at least. So now you take the extra R6k and spread it out over some games. By the time you’ve made up the difference on a PC, it’ll be time to upgrade again. And again. And yet again.

    PS3 over XBox? Are you smoking something? XBox has tons of games, costs less and the interface looks grown-up compared to the silly PS3 style (I have both). So the PS3 has blu-ray built in, which goes some way to justifying its still massive price. But if the console croaks, you lose your blu-ray player AND your console. Rather get a cheap XBox now, and save up for a proper, stand-alone Bly-Ray player at some point in the future. There aren’t that many movies out for it yet anyway, and most people don’t have the screenage or audio facilities to really make the most of them.

    Just my .02c!

  • Fred

    Inflation , should be 4c by now.

  • scotty777

    the sad thing is that now pc’s are getting far more powerful then consoles and with newer games, they are looking better.

    I mean, look at the Nvidia 8700M GT, Nvidia cames that the 8700M GT is more powerful then the xbox’s GPU and thats a NOTEBOOK GPU!

    the pendulum swings,

  • baba

    It is true that PC games on new GFX cards look better. But I’m still playing tetris.

    In other words, GFX does not make a game play better.

  • I would take that with a pinch of salt, it’s nVidia bashing an ATI part. All real world games set the 360 and PS3 on par with an 8800GT if you look at the recommended settings of CoD4, Assassins Creed, GRiD etc etc.

    doobiwan’s last blog post..The Games that made the consoles

  • As an ex PC gamer…

    PS3!!!!!!

    You can do more with it.

    Jinja’s last blog post..Karaoke

  • Chevron

    LOL. My pc can do ten million things your ps3 can’t.

    @doobiwan

    Bioshock on 360 is equivalent to the pc version on medium.

  • Rudolph

    Yea, only problem is that PC gamers are shooting themselves in the foot. Activision, as well as Ubisoft have started hinting that they will start to bring out more console exclusive games. Piracy in the PC games industry is just out of control.

    Look at COD4, only shipped a fraction of the projected PC sales, yet everybody’s playing it. Same with Crysis.

    What good is R6k gfx card when all of the good games are only released on console.

  • No man, I agree fully, what I meant was…

    PS3 over the 360, since you can do more with the PS3.

    I’m loving the console gaming…

    Gaming on your couch is way better than in front of the PC.

    I sit in front of a PC all day.

    Jinja’s last blog post..Karaoke

  • Oh and Ye, I wasn’t impressed with Bioshock on the 360 at all (I played it on my now 3 year old PC and the gfx were better)

    Jinja’s last blog post..Karaoke

  • Not YET…

    Jinja’s last blog post..Karaoke

  • Fox1

    LOL. No! you can’t do more with a PS3 than a PC.

  • Yip, the price of console games is RIDICULOUS!

    2nd hand/Trading is the way to go.

    Jinja’s last blog post..Karaoke

  • SlippyMadFrog

    You guys are seriously misguided. There was a PC vs 360 Bioshock comparison and the PC just edged it out on it’s highest setting. To lazy to get the link. Medium on PC don’t look nearly as good as Xbox360 Bioshock. You probably saw bioshock on SD or a crap HDTV.

    Jinja, PS3 can do more, at an increased price of course πŸ˜‰

  • Well developers need to go where the moneys at, the are also running business’s and it doesnt make sense to release a game on PC for instance where 250000 of the 500000 players have pirated the software, rather go for the console market where the ratio is less.

    Gazza ZA’s last blog post..The full Deal on the Cagney Burnout Pradise Update.

  • Fox1

    AMD has just released a GPU faster than every console combined!
    http://news.teamxbox.com/xbox/16829/AMD-Unveils-Cinema-20-Claims-Youll-Play-Inside-Movies/

    Now if we get this GPU in the xbox720 then the PS3 is going to have a mid-life crisis :mrgreen:

  • SlippyMadFrog

    Are you saying Crysis is going to be released on the PS3? πŸ˜€

  • kabraal

    It remains a problem to have a uber screen card with no games. No GTA4, no MGS4, gears of war released 6 months after the 360 version. Only the odd crysis with pretty water.

    The irony is that the biggest PC exclusive this year is arguably Starcraft 2, and it won’t need a 3GB dual GPU screencard at all…

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