Console Gaming vs. PC Gaming – Who has the Edge
It’s an age old dispute – OK, not “age old,” but it’s been around for as long as home gaming platforms: Which does gaming better, console or PC? Considering the gaming market today, and how most games are cross-platform compatible (aka have versions for each console and the PC), it can be tough to choose a side. We’ll let the two duke it out in a few key categories and tally up the winner.
The price tag on a high-end gaming computer has always been a deterrent for those looking to get into PC gaming. When the PS3 Slim is just $300, why spend thousands on a gaming PC? Well, there’s a counterargument. We’ve come to the point where a computer is almost a necessity in every household, and typically speaking, if you spend about $300 more on a new PC (opting for a video card and CPU upgrade), you’ll be pretty well suited to play most high-end PC games as well. This round is a tie.
When they first hit the market, the Xbox 360 and PS3 were both nearly on par with modern gaming PC’s in terms of video graphics capability. The problem is that consoles get stuck in the era they’re created in, while PCs see advancement every year. Over the past 5 years since the current generation consoles’ release, PC hardware has quadrupled in performance, leading to spectacular leaps in gaming visual effects. Point, PC.
Gaming on a console is simple, just turn it on, pop in the disc, and start playing. On a PC, it’s not so simple. First you have to install the game; then you usually have to fiddle with a few settings, maybe install a patch or two…It’s not rocket science, but it does take a bit of an adjustment compared to the simplicity of console gaming. This ties it up.
Gaming controls are generally a matter of personal preference. For the First Person Shooter crowd, playing games like Portal 2 and Left 4 Dead 2, the aiming accuracy of a PC’s mouse and keyboard is the typical choice. Adventure gamers tend to prefer a gamepad like an Xbox or PS3 controller. The PC holds the advantage here, supporting many gamepads (including the Xbox 360 controller) as well as a mouse and keyboard. The Wii certainly gives the PC’s controller options a run for their money, but we think they still manage the win. PC takes the lead, 2 to 1.
Online gaming is definitely the direction multiplayer games are taking, and the online world was essentially tailor made for the PC. Compared to consoles, online games on PC’s have more dedicated servers for smoother connections, better match making, and versatile communication options. Consoles are really playing catch-up hear; however, they do have one key advantage: offline multiplayer. All you need is an extra controller. For the PC, your buddy would need to lug over his own PC as well as his own copy of the game, and you’d need to be able to network your PC’s together. Each has their strong points, but this round is a tie.
The key difference between PC and console gaming is how long your hardware will last. The best looking PC games also need the newest, fastest PC hardware. This means that awesome PC game you’re waiting for next month may not run on your 3-year old gaming laptop. Consoles don’t have that problem. If the game is made for your console, it’ll work, no matter how old.
Yeah, this means it’s a draw, but we feel PC gaming should come first for those who think they might be interested in computers for more than just gaming. If it’s only about the games, a console will do just fine.