For as long as I’ve been a PC gamer, I’ve spent about equal time hating it as I have loving it.

I really wish I could just let it go – pick up an Xbox 360 and never look back.

That was me, 4 months ago. 2 nights ago – Thursday, March 9 2006, I kicked the habit. First thing Friday morning, I went out and bought a 360 and have been playing the shit out Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter all weekend and couldn’t be happier!

I have many beefs with PC gaming, which is no secret. But the big one that hurts the most is the cost associated with it. I simply can’t afford to do a complete overhaul every year and a half or so and the penalty for saving your pennies is too great to put myself through any longer. I auctioned off some of my most recent purchases – Star War Empire at War, The Battle for Middle-earth 2, Need for Speed Most Wanted and Battlefield 2. Yes, Battlefield 2. I bought it the day it came out and managed to swing one of the limited DVD version. I’ve loved the entire Battlefield series and Battlefield 2 is no exception. Unfortunately, it didn’t feel the same and gave me nothing but grief every time I tried to play it. Ironic, that the series I’ve loved so much for the past few years is the very straw that broke the camel’s back – what the shit does that mean, anyway?

I know what some of you are thinking – “Didn’t you just get that new 7800?” Sure did. Turns out BFG (manufacturer of both video cards I own) have a lifetime warranty on their products. I shipped my 6600 GT back to them today and should receive it back within a week or so – repaired or replaced. I’m gonna go back to that and sell off the 7800. I’m hanging onto all the games that performed well on my current system and will surely continue to play them. But for the time being, I won’t be picking up any new PC games. I’m not even going to demo games. I’ve really had enough tweaking settings and watching my framerate until I find the playable settings. From now on – it’s put the disc in and play for this guy. However, I will make an exception for expansions of games I already own. Like the Half-Life 2 episodes, etc.

Hopefully in a couple years I’ll find myself in a different situation where I’m able to drop a few grand on a new gaming rig every couple years. But until then, I’m retiring my trusty mouse and keyboard for a controller.

37 Comments

If you want to sell off Black… I might be interested. They have a wicked Black commercial in the US and it makes me really want to try it out.

Well, I know that day will come for me soon. I tell you, when I get the Xbox360 Im not turning back. But till then Ill enjoy as many games as I can on my 7900GT I just got. The truth is that PC games are getting boring, the same type of games keep coming out, and console games like Madden 06, NBA, NFSMW just dont feel right when playing on a PC as supposed to a console in terms of controll. I think this was my last upgrade. I had a 5500FX before so I know I will notice a difference/

I came to the same conclusion as you after I got my Xbox a couple of years ago. I saw no real need to keep upgrading my PC, only for the sake of games really.

It’s great to have a system that I don’t need to worry about upgrading. I know that when a game comes out for the platform, there are no worries anymore about having to upgrade a video card, etc. just to make sure I get decent frame rates. Plus, having the Xbox hooked up to my big screen is a huge bonus as well.

I’d actually be interested in taking F.E.A.R. off your hands. 🙂 I just need to get some money.

I see your point, but I could never move completely into console gaming – simply because the games are so much different.

I use my consoles for RPGs mostly, and my pc for FPS, RTS and hard strategy titles. Just never could get used to playing a FPS with a controller, only notable exception would GoldenEye for N64.

Even Halo annoyed the shit out of me.

I gave up with PC gaming altogether a few months ago after I bought a Mac and found that I was just playing CS Source all the time until the 360 came out, although other than CSS I hadn’t played any other PC game in months and months.

Are you on Xbox Live yet? It adds a big dimension to the game and is a helluva lot of fun. My GamerTag is SubDivid3r if anyone wants to add me 😀

One thing that has made my PC stick out over the consoles is how much better FPS’ are so much better with the precision of a keyboard & mouse than a controller with a sesitive tiny joystick.

Yeah, it really was a hard decision to come to. As many of you have said – a lot of the games that come out for PC are just better overall. I will definitely miss the RTS titles. I was actually just getting into RTS games over the past couple months. Was really liking Empire at War and Battle for Middle-earth 2, but couldn’t stand the constant slow downs.

And as far as mouse and keyboard vs controller goes – no contest, mouse and keyboard wins hands down. I am getting pretty good with the controller though. :-p

I’m not going to sell off any more of my games – and definitely not F.E.A.R.! That game’s in my top 5 of all time at the moment and I still play it pretty often.

Signing up for Xbox Live Gold for a year was one of the first things I did when I got my 360. Simply a must have. My Gamertag is PlainBlack for anyone that’s interested in shooting me in the face.

I’ve wanted to play GR2 on my PC, but they never released it… Now GR3 is out, I don’t know whether my PC will run it very well. I’m with you on the constant cost of a PC, and it’s a reason why I own a PS2 (hopefully a PS3 soon!!!!), but I simply can’t play FPS-style games with controllers, sticking more to racing games…

@trovster: Another 2 months actually. It’s dated May 16 for the PC release. Super lame. I find it a little suspicious that they delayed the PC version merely a couple days before the release of the Xbox/Xbox 360 versions. But I must say, if it was a marketing ploy, I fell for it. 😛

Lol… I knew you wouldn’t give up F.E.A.R. If I can play the demo as many times as I have, I can just imagine how hot the full game is.

I have GR3, fantistic game but I need a good crowd to play it with. The single player is so hard it’s stupid. Why would you send a lone marine in to take out an entire castle full of rebels?!

My Gamertag is Darkstar DX Matt so I’ll add you later. Be warned though, I’m part of the GMT timezone crowd so I’ll probably never see you online.

@Tommy: Yeah dude, it’s pretty tough for sure. I was actually surprised how easy the first couple missions were. Then you get dropped off all by your lonesome, your HUD is fucked and there’s dudes everywhere. Now it feels more like a Ghost Recon game. Not sure if you played the first two, but the series is notorious for being tough. Especially the first one.

WOW. Im cranky cause mu uncle came across some money recently and bought his little nephew a 360, How unfare! I told my mom and she said she’ll tell him that I said that, which is awesome, cause I also added that if he gets me on, he can play it, hes over everynight for tea anyways, annnnnnd, I want the good version

I flop back and forth myself on PC gaming. I get a new PC and play PC games for 2 years, then the latest games start running poorly or not at all on my machine, and I buy myself a console to tide myself over until I can afford a new PC. I’m likely to stay on the PC for a little longer this time around because I got overly enthusiastic about my new computer last year and haven’t gotten around to playing half the games I bought. That stupid World of Warcrack keeps me from playing anything else…

I came to the same conclusion about Games and PCs a while ago. It seemed obvious that sooner or later people would either get sick of being asked to drop a couple of Gs on upgrades just to play games, or the industry would finally hit the wall on how far they could push graphics. Either one is imminent and consoles seem to be on a better track towards reality.

If I buy a console game, I simply pop it into the drive and play. No fear that it won’t run, no need to spend more cash on upgrades, no elitist cast system of those who can see/hear/play a game one way, while the rest play it on ‘shit’ mode.

It’s true that console titles don’t have that ‘je ne sais quois’ that PC titles do but at least they have a level playing field that makes your initial investment a good one. PCs are a frakin’ money pit.

I’m still holding off investing in the 360 because I want to be damned sure that the PS3 isn’t better.

Ahhh welcome to the 360 world!

I don’t think you’ll regret it at all, I know I haven’t.

I’m really torn about what game to get next now. I was all set for getting Fight Night 3… but I ‘ve heard sooo many good things about GRAW.

I’ll add you tomy friends list when I get home if that’s OK? Mty tag’s Mr Chiquita.

Don’t think you’ll turn your back totally on the PC though, having said that the only game I’ve played since getting my 360 is Football Manager (Soccer that is. But that’s just because it’s very potent crack.

It’s hitting the 360 in a couple of months anyhoo.

@ Matt: According to Play.com (UK), Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon 3: Advanced Warfighter is "Due for release on 07/04/2006".

I took that plunge the Friday before Christmas, when I got my 360. I have a 360, PS2, GC and NDS, and I don’t plan on purchasing any more PC games. Just like you, I can’t afford to keep upgrading my PC just to play the games I want to play. I was ecstatic when I heard FEAR was coming to the 360 as that was one of the only games on the PC I considered buying and playing, even though I would have had to turn the eye candy way down just to get it to play on my rig (2400+, 1 gig PC2700 RAM, GeForce 5900XT).

So far I’ve been pretty pleased with my 360. Even though I only have three games left (traded the rest in as they didn’t do a whole lot for me), the games I did keep (CoD2, PGR3; and just bought GRAW) I’m happy with. Now I just need to pick up Burnout Revenge for the 360, and I’ll be pretty happy. 🙂

I didn’t have the first one but the second was great. Apart from those god forsaken red cross issues when you tried to view your friends list. For those not in the know you had to restart your xbox, making you wait until the game had finished to join back in (which GR3 still does, damn you Ubi!!!!). I hate that so much, why does Ubi have a problem with people joining mid-game?

Lets not forget the standardization of controls…

PC Gaming can be an expensive bitch. 🙂

Yep, I can’t think of a damned way to be able to keep from buying the next episodes in the Half-Life series–especially if the ones past Half-Life 2 end with similar mind-numbingly random cliffhangers.

I now how you feel, I gave up on PC gaming during my Operation Flashpoint days, it was just stupid how many updates, patches, drivers, hardware changes you needed each time to play.

Since Xbox Live came out I’ve been converted. GR3 (forget GR:AW) is one of the better next gen titles out there and for me by far the best. I’ll chuck you a friend request later but like Tommy I’m from the wrong side of the Atlantic.

Matt,

Since we own the same Gateway 21"HD LCD monitor, are we in business with the 360 and this monitor?

I think this is a fairly sensible conclusion to come to. I made the same decision back in 2001/2 when I picked up a Gamecube instead of upgrading my PC.

I absolutely made the right decision and I’ll probably do the same this generation. Like you say, it’s just too damn expensive. But more than that, I found (and expect it to happen again this time) that the more interesting games around are, for the first 3 years of a console’s life, on the consoles and it’s only once the PC standard (not the cutting edge) has caught up with the consoles that PC gaming is worth looking into.

Oh and Microsoft has made a really successful strategy of getting most of the good PC franchises onboard with the Xbox, so that makes it an even easier decision to go console.

It’s funny: a few months ago I got on board a major MMO beta. I could not run the thing on my system and got into a debate with the president of the company about his decision to market yet another game to the ‘I’ll-update-my-computer-for-your-awesome-game’ demographic. I pointed out to him that he was building an MMO, not the type of genre that is best suited to having uber graphics. He didn’t see my point.

So, after a few months and supposed revisions to the code I went back. Here’s what I got:

0.8 FPS, my friends, 0.8 FPS.

When that NDA is up, I’m going public with my dialogue with him.

Hey Matt,

After reading this article I felt really silly about posting my comments on your widescreen gaming monitor piece.

Actually, to be honest I feel exactly the same way – whatever happened to those simple days when you all you had to do was go to egghead software, load the game on your pc and play to your hearts content? Nowadays there always seems like something needs tweaking, updating, upgrading, troubleshooting….blegh, its too much – and i’ve been gaming since the days Sid Meier’s Pirates on the Commodore 64.

To be totally honest – places like the widescreen gaming forum along with other enthusiast sites and industry ‘magalogs’ like pc gamer really don’t do much to help the situation. There’s always something bigger and better around the corner and the media outlets are more than happy to make us feel behind the curve if we don’t have the latest and greatest gear.

I started simplifying my entire setup as well. Games are gone for now, my 4.2 klipsch with the octupus monster cables is resting quietly in the closet. My widescreen display might even take a small hiatus. Taking a break from all this stuff is certainly refreshing. I have more time to do other things, feel healthier, etc. Thanks for taking the time to write that.

@Stretch: Well, it’s good to know that even PC gaming enthusiasts like yourself are feeling the same way.

There’s always something bigger and better around the corner and the media outlets are more than happy to make us feel behind the curve if we don’t have the latest and greatest gear.

That’s it, right there. Feeling inadequate after spending thousands of dollars on a gaming rig is not cool. Where as, if you’re a console gamer, you have the complete opposite feeling as you know your hardware is up to snuff. At least with everyone else you’re playing with.

It’s been almost 4 months now, since I picked up my Xbox 360 and started enjoying stress free gaming. And I must say – it feels great and I don’t have a single regret.

Thanks for stopping by, BTW. Did you find my site from your stats?

Actually I think I typed some combination of "widescreen/gaming/+the title of a certain game" in google to find your blog entry on the Gateway 21" monitor. From there I just browsed your archives. Very cool site btw!

Yea, at this point i’m enjoying a break, but being a tweaker/builder at heart I always like to keep up with whats going on in the world of technology and gaming. I think I actually enjoy the "lego" part of building my machine, and the occasional game is really more like icing on the cake.

It’s funny – there are still quite a few complaints about pc games themselves – bad patches, driver issues, starforce protection, etc, that pop up at the WSGF, so i’m actually kinda relieved that I’m not playing any major titles right now.

I do have a soft spot, mostly born out of nostalgia for my pc games, but It’s funny – over the years i’ve noticed that if you build a windows machine, do word processing, web surfing, etc, on it, it will probably run forever. Add games to the mix and its almost like a countdown before some error or blue-screen disaster surfaces. 😉

Matt,

I have come to the same conclusion just this last week. I’ve got a mac for all my web-surfing, itunes and occasional gaming, I’m ditching my PC except for CS:S, and I’m getting a 360. Funny thing is, while I’m really perturbed about how much time and money I’ve thrown at upgrading my rig, I’m looking forward to the whole 360 experience. I spend all day fixing computers – I’m a tech – and I hate coming home and having to fix my own, or loading up my newest game and seeing it chunk along. For a measly $400, I can get a system that will run high-res, AA and AS and HDR enabled. That’s in comparison with upgrading my current pc for about $900. There really isn’t any choice in the matter.

Eventually, I’m planning on running an imac 20" intel core duo and the 360.

Love your website – recommended it to all the folks here in IT.

[…] 360 was the first console I bought within a year of being released since NES. I picked up my Xbox 360 in early March of 2006, just 4 months after its release. Since then, there’s barely been a day gone by that I […]

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