PC gaming: pay for power, stay for versatility

I enjoy games of all kinds. First-person shooters, massively-multiplayer online games, role-playing games, you name it. I also enjoy playing games over several different consoles –WiiU, Playstation 3 and 4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. However, nothing has appealed to me more over the past few years than PC gaming.

When most people buy a computer, they’re getting it for school, word-processing or Facebook. When I shop for computers, I make sure the computer can run at least some of the best games with high-quality settings.

I suppose PC gaming might appeal to people for certain reasons more than others, but I believe PC gaming is a bit cheaper and more versatile than console gaming. With consoles, you’re stuck with what they give you. The only customizable things are the amount of memory your system can hold. With PCs, you can customize so much more — the amount of RAM (random access memory), graphics, sound and power supply. If you’re a smart shopper or if you know a guy, you can get parts for your computer at a fairly cheap rate, or at a complete discount. Even installation is just a YouTube search away.

To be specific, when looking at PC gaming, you would want to look mostly at desktop computers. Laptops can be faulty and are not as customizable. What’s more, a laptop can be substantially weaker at running certain video games, compared to what a desktop can handle.

A friend of mine, Ryan, believes that consoles are better in the long run, especially if you are not much of an avid gamer or very good with technology.

“You don’t have to worry about if you have the right specifications to play certain games or not,” Ryan said. “With a computer, you do have to worry about the specifications in your tower.” He says this despite the fact he’s a PC gamer at the moment — not that I don’t agree with him.

With PC games, you’re mostly going to use digital downloading, which is great because if you’re like me, going down to GameStop or a similar retail game store is kind of annoying without a car. Digital downloading is just as the name states — you’re going to be downloading your games. If you’re a penny pincher, you’re going to enjoy the fact that games tend to be cheaper or on sale when you download them from websites like HumbleBundle or Steam.

Steam, by the way, is the best friend of any PC gamer. It’s comparable to GameStop deciding to give good deals, but exclusively to PC gamers.

Another thing you get with PC games that you don’t get with consoles is “modding,” or modifying. Mods on a PC game are kind of like mods on a car. They either make your car run better, look better, or do something special that other cars can’t do. Modding is available for consoles, but at a few costs. For example, with Xbox, if you want to mod your games, you’ll have to buy extra parts and tinker with your console. And even then, if Microsoft catches you violating their Terms of Service, you’re in big trouble. PC games are easy to mod, just a drag and drop of a file and you’re good to start using your car in Grand Theft Auto as a plane.

One thing you cannot do with PC games, unfortunately, is trade in your old or unwanted games for cash or credits. It could happen sometime in the future, but for now, any game you buy, you’re stuck with — though I guess that is why Blake Griffin and his trusty jetpack come through to advertise for Gamefly.

“Never get burned by a bad game,” as the commercials say.

Remember, Indie Gamers need love and money, too. You’ll only find a handful of Indie Games on Xbox Marketplace or Playstation Network. Google is your friend if you want to find good quality Indie Games that come in bundles of five for $1 for your PC.

It might be hard to tell my stance, but really, I am all for PC gaming. I feel it’s cheaper, or at least a little more affordable. Versatility is key. With PC gaming comes a fun community, and more options and games to choose from.

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