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Veteran Member - Level 13
I used to play PC games a lot, but I could never keep up with the latest games because my PC wouldn't run them. Or, they would run them, but not at optimum where you can see all the bells and whistles that the game developer obviously wanted you to play with. Sure, the game might be fun even without all of that, but I felt like I was missing out. Why play a game where the graphics are supposedly mind-blowing when you have to dial things down so much to run it on your machine that the graphics are no longer blowing your mind away?
Whenever I would buy a new computer, though, I would buy a fairly recent game that my new computer should be able to run. The last time I did this, Civilization IV was fairly new (though not *brand* new). I haven't done this on the last couple computers that I've bought, though.
This was really a big issue when the original Crysis came out.
IGN's review said "Crysis is one of, if not the, most stunningly beautiful games we've ever seen."
It also said:
"The one thing that you're going to have to seriously consider before purchasing the game specifically for the visuals is the power of your PC. Crysis may very well kick your computer in the balls at Very High settings. It'll look spectacular doing so, but may very well turn into more of a slideshow than you'd probably prefer and in some cases become completely unplayable."
This was happening more and more, and since I had bought a couple of consoles in the last couple of years before this, I finally decided I wasn't going to worry about it anymore. Consoles, I never have to upgrade the hardware, at least until the next generation comes out.
There is another reason I bring up Crysis though, in addition to just the fact that it highlighted the problem.
Crytek, the creators of Crysis and the company that's going to be bringing Crysis 2 to not just the PC, but also game consoles, has put their foot into the ring to talk about the ongoing consoles vs PC wars. It seems that Crytek thinks that consoles are holding PC games back.
"[Crytek boss Cervat Yerli] goes on to say developers’ ability to express themselves creatively is being “limited” by Sony and Microsoft’s game boxes dominating the market."
Excuse me while I get out the violin.
There's no reason that a company can't make a PC-only game so that they can "express themselves creatively".
Except...oh yeah, that nasty thing called "the Market" where people buy what they want to buy. Sorry if Market Forces are keeping you from expressing yourself.
There are other reasons that I don't really care for PC gaming (and when I say that, I mean just buying them myself, as I certainly don't have anything against playing on somebody else's machine if they've got a good rig). One is that PCs are so diverse, that you're always dealing with driver issues, graphics card issues, and all of that. You can buy a game and it will work on one system but not another, due to something weird in the latter. When the original Call of Duty came out on the PC, I tried the demo and loved it. So I borrowed it from a friend to see whether I wanted to actually buy it. I could never get it to work on my machine. There was no way I was buying it after that.
Consoles don't have these issues. They're all the same. If you buy a game, it will either work or it won't work. And if it doesn't work, they'd better patch it so it does work. And, if it doesn't work on your machine but it does on everybody else's, that means there's actually something wrong with your machine. It doesn't mean that the game won't run if you have a gamepad plugged in.
This is something I had happen with Carmageddon 2 on an old computer of mine. I was greatly enjoying playing Carmageddon 2, but got away from it a bit. I had a gamepad plugged in to play High Heat Baseball 2003, and just left the pad plugged in. I decided to try Carmageddon 2 again, and it suddenly wouldn't work. Couldn't figure it out at all and I finally gave up. It was a couple years later, I wasn't playing baseball anymore and thus had removed the controller. Decided to see if I could get Carmageddon 2 to work again. Worked like a charm. Couldn't figure out why, until I plugged the controller back in for something else. Suddenly the game wasn't working again.
Those are the main reasons I don't buy computer games. If tons of other people do the same, so much so that putting out a game only on PC isn't financially viable, then that's just the way it is. I know Starcraft 2 is an exception, and I'm sure there are others as well. Surely you can make something work?
Or maybe you just stop moaning about it and work on the consoles. From everything I've heard, Crysis 2 is going to look phenomenal, even on the consoles. Obviously Crytek has the talent to do this.
So why add fuel to the fire rather than just working on your game?
So, questions for you, dear reader:
1) Do you share Crytek's concern? Are consoles holding games, especially PC games, back?
2) Are you a console gamer, a PC gamer, or both? (And if you *only* play Starcraft 2, I'm not sure I'd consider you a PC gamer). And please, no wars in the comments section.
Oh, and before any PC gamers get their panties in a twist, I'm also not making a value judgement on playing games with graphics and other things dialed down so you can play it on your machine.
I *know* that it can be fun, and some games are exciting even with all of the bells and whistles gone.
It's just a personal preference, that *I* don't like playing games that aren't at their full specs because my computer is outdated.
I wish I had a state of the art PC. But I don't. Consoles are cheaper than a gaming PC. And if Cryteck thinks consoles are holding them back.....then why make it for consoles?
HAHA! The *only* game that has me returning to PC gaming at the moment is StarCraft II. I don't have it yet, but Christmas is coming very soon, and I hope to have it then. :)
I used to have a Steam account (probably still do, technically) and I played Half-Life 2. I had to turn the graphics down to get the game to run smoothly on my laptop, and when I was playing Episode 1, Steam kept telling me that I had to update my graphics card software, but according to my graphics card, the software was up-to-date. It was a frustrating situation that, a few years later, ended with my purchase of Orange Box on Xbox 360, where I was able to enjoy Half-Life 2 in all of its splendor AND finish Episode 1 and play Episode 2 for the first time.
Last year, I got a new laptop because my old one died. I'm REALLY hoping it can handle StarCraft II... it's a PC only title that I don't want to miss - I've heard so many good things about it and I really enjoyed RTS games when I was in high school (though I never played the original StarCraft, just Command & Conquer, Red Alert, a little WarCraft (very little) and Stronghold Cruisader.
I have to agree that pc games are a dying breed, because of this the idea of having to constantly upgrade your computer is also dropping. With the lack of PC gamer's still out there; many publishers have tuned down their graphics to allow more users to be able to enjoy them. Crysis was the exception to this, and i believe there was another game that was put out that to fully enjoy needed a top of the line computer. I have a 600 dollar 2yr old computer with a 150 dollar graphics card and I do not have any problems running games. If i remember right, Crysis could also be ran on lower ended computers, but there was a download for higher ended computers.
Back to the question of pc vs. console, i believe they are equal. I am an RTS player which can only be found on pc,at least a good game; but do not like playing FPS on the computer. I will always have a computer, and a console.
On a side note, i can not wait until the games are all cordinad together n matter what platform you play it on. When peope on a computer can be on the same server as someone on a console will be the day. I am excited to see CCP new game Dust 514, where the events in the console will effect the MMO game on PC.
Great comments, guys! I'm glad that this didn't spark any kind of war that I thought might happen.
@Derreck: I have noticed the exceedingly smaller PC gaming shelf at EB Games and other stores I've gone into. And I noticed something when you listed the "must-haves": they're all either strategy, RTS, or MMOs (Sims, as you said, has come to the consoles). Those are the types of games that can't really be played well on the consoles, so they'll have a market for a while.
Maybe a smaller one, which is why they can't be *that* expensive to make (generally, since I know some of the blockbusters are probably still pretty expensive)
@Saint: I know you're a big TF2 fan, but do you play the *new* games on PC? And if you do, maybe you can answer (as well as kchaps too, which I'll get to below): are the new games coming out where you can get the maximum effect on a recent PC rather than upgrading? Do they appear to have learned?
@Di5a5terp13ce: good point! I think maybe they're frustrated that they even have to go that route? I don't know.
@Cody: That's the other side to the equation! Some of the well-loved games of the past aren't playable now because they can't handle the new drivers and everything. Sure, you can get updated versions of some games at GOG, or you can do an emulator, but how soon before some of the real greats are completely unplayable?
@born4this: Your Half-Life experience sounds eerily familiar. :) Though mine wasn't Half-Life. I can't remember what game it was, but I had a fun time playing it on the console after I couldn't get it to work on my PC.
@kchaps: You don't have any problems running games, but are you able to run them with everything turned on? Or do you have to make adjustments? If you don't, then that's cool! Maybe game companies are learning that we're not all made of money.
I seem to recall that Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion was also "state of the art" on PCs when it came out, making sure I stayed far away from it (until I got my 360, anyway).
Of course, I might be mistaken on that one.
Thanks again, guys!
1) I hate to say but to some extent I agree with Crytek. It is holding them back but, if they wanted to upgrade Consoles every year the PC issue would start, just with consoles. Consoles have to be affordable to everyone and for the meantime, they are. So, in the meantime, maybe Crytek needs to hit the breaks a little on advancing their game too much to where there isn't any sales for it on PC.
2) I used to be a HUGE PC gamer. Battlefield 2, any MMO I could possibly find(Eventually settled on Guild Wars). Diablo, Command and Conquer, I would spent countless hours on these. But, the same thing happened to me as it did to you. I don't have money every 6-12 months to go buy a new Rig. There's no shot. So I went to consoles with my 360 and soon getting a PS3. I hope one day I can keep up with PC upgrading, but for now, there's no chance.
I think the Crytek people are just whiners(weiners?). Once they see sales go up when Crysis 2 hits the consoles they will change thier tune dramatically.
I am a console gamer for the same reasons as Hist. The enchantment of PC gaming left me when I couldn't get the original Soldier of Fortune to run on my PC. I needed a video card that at the time was about $150, so I put that money towards a bunch of games that I KNEW would work on my Playstion.
@Hist, so far with the games i play i have not had to turn anything down. The most recent game i have bought is StarCraft 2 and had no problems running it on factory settings. I also play EVE online with everything turned on, which can be demanding on a computer. To keep up with games the only thing you will need to do is buy a decent graphics card. Of course i only really buy RTS games on pc, which themselves are not that demanding on a computer to began with. So, it may be diffrent trying to run FPS. I am about to buy Mass effect 1, and 2 however since i sold my x-box and will let you know. Looking at the requirments it seems with my 2yr old computer, and the graphics card I will have no problems running it. Most computer games to date recommended requirments are dual core 2.4ghz, 2-4gb ram which you can find a computer around 600dollars, and add a 150 dollar graphics card and you will be able to play any game with normal settings made to date; of course there are probably exceptions to this, but i have not had any problems.
You were right about Elder scrolls, it was a high end game, but i also think that during that time, technology was constantly being upgraded. I think that is another reason games requirments have stayed about the same. The age of technolgy is starting to stable off a bit.
Hist, Crytec themselves even mentioned on Crysis that it was designed for future systems as well... hence the maxed out details were for future systems... people who kept bitching about their system nt being able to play it maxed out are morons. I ran Crysis on dx9 maxed out (no aa though) but at my resolution it didn't need it.
And the reason Crysis 2 will "look good on consoles" is because they made it to cater to the console because they'd have to cut so much out of the game if they designed it for the PC first then ported it to the console. That reason alone has me let down that the PC version will be total suckage.
It's common sense that consoles hold back the pc, pc's are more powerful, have more ram, have more abilities than outdated console tech. But the majority of console owners don't grasp any of that. And especially on this website where asides from a couple writers, are console fanboys. *sigh* the downfall of gaming becoming mainstream. Put a new game out on the same engine that's been used for several years, doesn't look interesting, doesn't look good but has different skins and people keep nbuying it (call of duty).
Due to the laziness in most developers these days they don't push any boundries and keep pushing the console seen and therefor nothing cutting edge or pushing the limits ie crysis, metro 2033, the original farcry, halflife (1/2), Doom3/Quake IV or stalker (1/2/3) come out.
It's rare that a game pushes a computer to the point of unplayability. I have a 4 year old system and it's still rocking games maxed out. So sorry Hist, you're reasoning isn't viable now a days. my 8800gt has done well, there's many games you should get the pc counterpart rather than the console version, dragon age, anything by Valve/ID, Mass Effect 1/2, Battlefield (any), Stalker, ARMA 2, Just cause 2, Dawn of War (1/2), Fallouts/Oblivion... mods, etc.. make the last 2 some of the most amazing games you'll ever see.. screw your console version
The PC has moved into a digital download era too, hence depending on the store why there is less games on the shelf. Target near me has tons of PC games as does best buy. The EBgames/gamestops are hit or miss, it depends on the sales demographic of the area... some dont have any yet some have tons... i preorder pc games at one if said game has a killer preorder package for it. PC gaming isn't dying, i think till recently digital purchases weren't being counted in the sales stats, so trust me it's worth checking out pc gaming.
if nvidia/ati didnt have the pc to push new technology imaging what the ps3 would have cost the consumer... ~$1000? without the PC as a test bed for console tech the prices would be ridiculous. now a days they go hand in hand just a shame that some people dont open their eyes that they miss out on awesome pc games and settle for mediocre versions on the console
You sound very passionate on the subject, so good for you.
This *was* an issue when I stopped buying PC games, so if the tech requirement problems have settled down, then wonderful!
That still doesn't necessarily address the wide variety of compatibility issues that I mentioned above, though. Different drivers, different cards, different CPUs, etc. A game works fine on one system and on another system won't run, and there's really no indication why.
The last PC game I bought, as I mentioned, was Civilization IV. It developed a chronic problem where, late in the game, it would just suddenly reboot my entire computer. I don't know if the CPU was too slow, the graphics card was too outdated to handle the increased load late in the game, where there are *lots* of units on the board, or what it was.
I did buy a new computer and tried it out again. Same problem. It wasn't a top-of-the-line computer, but it was a decent computer for the time period (i.e. it wasn't a $600 econo-box).
Some people don't mind figuring out why a game won't run, or what issues might be plaguing a certain game at any one time. And more power to them. I certainly don't have anything against them.
I just don't want to do it.
And yes, there are other reasons why consoles are more convenient to me that don't have anything to do with technology. My wife uses the computer a lot for work, so it's much easier for me to just sit on the couch and use the TV.
But the technology issues don't help.
Incidentally, this piece got a *huge* number of hits yesterday. Can somebody who reads this let me know where you found it, if you found it linked elsewhere?
Because 100 hits in one day, and *not* the day it was published, is a bit high.
Unless it's been Herded, and I know that doesn't come out until the end of the week.
Typically when a computer reboots itself it's usually a hardware problem. CPU or GPU over heating and the computer resets itself. I can't think of why ... of any game Civ IV would do that, i've played every single Civ game and not once had a problem with it.
Thanks for the reply, I'm quite passionate about this, I'm 30yrs old, have been a gamer since the age of 5, gamed on a commodore 64 computer back then (still own it, a computer for win95/xp games, and my win 7 rig/tv rig), and the PC has always been my main platform of choice, so I guess I take some thigns to heart because I have so much time invested in this hobby, whether it be gamiing itself, competitive gaming (did CAL league for a decade now), or even modding/level design... did plenty of RTCW maps years ago. Nothing compares to the PC platform imo, i've owned a playstation, dreamcast, gamecube, xbox, xbox 360, and a wii as well, BUT they all end up collecting dust not long after purchase.
The fact that there's people as passionate as I am that constantly bring new mods, etc.. to the table for the PC scene I never get in a lull with it, there's always something fasinating on the brink of discovery and I hate that alot of places treat pc gamers as nerds, outcasts, 2nd rate people or what have you because it's our platform of choice, i have no problem with consoles at all. Everybody has their own preference but its a shame when publications treat us like crap, i know i complained once here bcause some artcile criticized PC gamers for complaining that MW2 wouldnt have mod support or dedicated servers... I'm glad people stuck to their guts and didn't buy it, i know ALOT did, I haven't because why take away whats made a PC game a PC game.... if i wanted matchmaking i'd go play it on xbox.. ya know?
I'm sure i come off edgy at first, but I'm glad you responded. I don't want to come off as they say "elitist" but passion sometimes overtakes my judgement.
Only reason I found this article was I saw it about a week ago on PCgamer.com then it showed up a day or two ago on kotaku.com so i did a search to see if it got on here too.. lol
A couple of your comments came off as as "anti-console elitist," but I just chalked that up to your passion for the subject. If you'd continued on that line, of course, I would have thought otherwise.
I used to game on the Commodore 64 too! Impossible Mission is still one of my favourite gaming memories. Also loved Knights of the Desert, as I was an avid wargamer.
The ability to mod is certainly one great aspect of computer gaming, and I find it interesting how many games actually allow that. It's very cool.
Thanks for letting me know how you found the post. Somehow, I doubt the other 100 or so hits are for that reason, though. :)
Thanks, I can't even imagine how many days, weeks, years of time my brother and i spent on Microprose's Apache Gunship game/sim. Probably the only 5 and 7 year olds that were addicted to such a game at that time lol. And the classics Zaxxon and Super Zaxxon, Aztec Challenge.. and the all time great Forbidden Forrest (on cassette!!!) Since then I got hooked..lol
The mod scene has been pretty wild ont he PC, I love the Stalker series, yet people have spent the time to totally mod the game.. giving npcs/vendors new abilites, graphic reworkings of the game, etc... it's almost like an entirely new game with these new mods.