A debate that has a lot of gamers divided, is whether owning a PC is better than owning a dedicated console. The gaming community has discussed this, and no one can seem to agree. While consoles can be great for some things, PCs are much more powerful and allow you more actions such as live dealer games, faster frame rates, and better graphics. Here are a few reasons you should opt for a PC over a console!
Own games forever
A PC game is yours forever once you purchase it. Historically, the PC has been used for gaming for over forty years. You can now access most of that forty years, thanks to the enthusiasm of the PC community.
If you own a PC, you can access all that history. From Gabriel Knight to Caesar III and Phantasmagoria, Steam now has a bunch of classic Sierra games. The best games of the ’90s are still available to players today.
There is no doubt that it can be finicky. Mod installation can be daunting if you have no idea how to do it. However, if this means being able to replay an old classic on your current hardware rather than scrounging up a PC from 1999 or relying on a remaster, then do it. Sony PlayStation 4 owners can only play PlayStation 3 games if they enroll in PlayStation Now for $20 a month.
Before going any further, let’s speak about the elephant in the room: Money! In the past, the PC tended to lag behind consoles in this area. So a PC would indeed cost thousands of dollars, and a console would cost $300 to $400.
At least on the front end, PC gaming is still more expensive. There is no change in this regard. Those who can build a gaming desktop for under $400 are either wizards or excellent at snagging discount parts during sales. You deserve all the credit. At this point, the PC isn’t significantly more expensive. For under $550, you can build a gaming PC that can compete with consoles for under $850. You can create a much more powerful machine.
Graphics cards, in particular, have become much more affordable. You can buy a GeForce GTX 1060 with 3GB on Amazon for only $200. You will still hit 60-plus frames per second in all modern games when you maximize graphics to 1080p. In addition, if you want to go big and game at 1440p resolution, the version with 6GB of RAM will only set you back $260.
Graphics cards are hard to find at their recommended list prices these days, but the point is that companies want PC gaming to be accessible. GPU manufacturers want PC gamers to buy them. There is now more competition to make PCs more affordable than ever before. Additionally, the $200 graphics card performs better than the one inside the PlayStation 4.
PC exclusives are available
Perhaps you have a friend who believes it is unfair that PCs have no exclusives. Whether it be on a forum or in person, we’ve all seen that person before. Clearly, that’s a strange argument that betrays a lack of familiarity with the PC. There are now far more PC-only games than console-only games.
One of the greatest genres in the world is strategy. There are a lot of turn-based strategy games as well as real-time strategy games on the PC. However, they are not all slow-moving strategy games. It is estimated that hundreds of games are released on PCs every year which never make it to consoles.
Console exclusives are no more
Both Xbox One and PlayStation 4 are the only systems that can play these games. Instead, they are marketed as Console Exclusives for those systems, which are also available on the PC. It appears that both Sony and Microsoft view the PC as neutral territory. The company keeps its first-person games to itself, which is more cautious. Consequently, the PC version of Uncharted 4 is nowhere to be found. PlayStation Now, a subscription-based game streaming service for PC just released by Sony, hints that this may change.
The Xbox Play Anywhere program extends Microsoft’s participation in the Xbox and Windows 10 even further. Every exclusive Xbox game is coming to Windows 10, such as Cuphead, Forza Motorsport, Gears of War 4, Quantum Break, and more.
Similarly, AAA games from third parties always appear on PCs. Nowadays, owning a PC doesn’t mean you can’t play console games. There won’t be many first-party titles on Sony’s side, but the rest is better than the console versions, so it is worth it.
Free-to-play games and sales
A PC gamer also has access to new titles at a lower cost. As a result, price drops are more rapid and stay lower. There is, of course, the vaunted Steam Sales to remember, but they are not the only sales going on. Regular sales are offered by Green Man Gaming, Amazon, Gamersgate, GOG.com, and Humble. Therefore, you can build up a vast library of games cheaply, more than compensating for the cost of your hardware.
Most big games can be preordered on Steam at a discount of 10 to 20 percent, and by six months after release, most of them are $15 or $20 during sales. Sometimes even cheaper. You can often find great indie games for less than $10 on sale if you’re patient. How about consoles? The lowest price for many AAA games, even on sale, seems to have been around $30 for years on end.
There is also free-to-play. Free is often viewed as a dirty word, but the truth is that some of the biggest and most popular games in the world are free. Perhaps you’ve heard of League of Legends, Dota 2, Path of Exile, Team Fortress 2, and Evolve? Some of the PC’s best games can be played for hundreds or thousands of hours without spending a penny.
At one point, most of the world’s gamers bought a PlayStation 4, the most powerful console to date. Moreover, players assumed it would last for many years to come. We can say plenty about expectations surrounding consoles, about why people spend $600-plus every two years on a phone but expect a $400 console to last ten years.
Instead of using a genuine PC upgrade strategy, consoles are now using a virtual one. PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox One X indicate that consoles could eventually move into hardware tiers, with newer, more powerful consoles every three to four years. It’s not possible to crack open the PS4, install a new GPU, then turn it back on. Instead, buy a new console and sell the old one online.
The PC may cost more upfront, but later upgrades will be easier. The same processor and graphics card will probably last for up to six years if you’re a budget gamer. RAM? Case? Power supply? Hard drives? Fans? Everything is surprisingly inexpensive, so you can carry it forever, building after building, replacing only when necessary.
Even if your only goal is to stay ahead of consoles, you can get by with a budget build with upgrades as needed. Purchasing new gaming consoles every three or four years will cost the same or less compared to staggering costs over a few years.