There’s no doubt I’m an avid gamer. The trouble is, I probably miss a whole lot of good games by being a stubborn PC gamer. I certainly have my reasons not to go down the console path. The main issue I’ve always had with consoles is the controller. I don’t like the way they feel and the generally unnatural way it feels to control movements on them.
Sure, I dabbled with Nintendo consoles, but I quickly got bored of the games and went straight back to my trusty PC. Even the Wii, which brought such a big revolution to control methods for consoles didn’t hold my attention for long. Yes, the fact that it was more natural, intuitive and interactive to play the games on Wii when you were standing up and throwing things at the screen, but those were quite limited in what you could really do in them.
Another reason is the lack of any real choice if one game you really wanted was exclusive to one system. You had to physically buy another set of hardware just to play that exclusive. A great example is the car racing series Gran Turismo, which is exclusive to Playstation. My response? Don’t play it at all. Sure, there are games like that for PC, but the reason they are exclusive is due to the fact they have massive scale. You couldn’t invent an interface that would work well for games like Simcity, Master of Orion or Civilization on a console controller.
I also don’t like consoles for the fact that the hardware is expected to last a very long time in technology terms without any real changes. Let’s think about it, the XBox 360 was released in late 2005 and its successor is just coming out now, eight years later. In 2005, the latest and greatest in computer technologies were the GeForce 7000 series and Intel hadn’t released its original Core processors yet. Now of course, CPUs with more than four independent computing cores are common place, Intel has begun annual iterations of its very successful Core architecture and so have the GeForce series of graphics components. Eight generations of computing technology has been released into the world and consoles are only now catching up. Sort of.
The latest consoles incorporate the best compromise between performance, price and power consumption, which could well be enough to get the best games running for a year or so before the need to take shortcuts in the software due to the lack of hardware capabilities and power. Conversely, in the PC universe, technology drives forward at an uncompromising pace. Things will continue to look and play better every year, irrespective of what the console crowd does.
This is the key reason why I don’t like consoles. You’re stuck with the thing for a long time. If I find that something in my computer is lacking, I can go and fix that problem. Well, OK if you’re an Apple customer or you have a tablet or laptop, you’re out of luck on that count too. You’d have to buy a whole new one. But for those of us in the PC universe with the convenience of being able to add modular components at a time of your choosing is why it will remain the ultimate, enduring computing platform.