Consoles are nice and all....

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Anonymous

Hello all,

I have read some of the various commentary on console and PC gaming here, and thought I would make this post to explain my own thoughts on it for all time (so we don't have to waste time elsewhere in other peoples threads...).

I have noted the varied arguments for consoles here, and how they are better for gaming, easier, etc.

I would like to say that, in many ways, I disagree. Allow me to explain the reasons why;

1) Types of games: To date, consoles have not offered the types of games I enjoy. Whether it be Military simulations (hardcore and tactical/strategic), old school roleplaying, independant gaming, and even FPSers (lack of mouse control makes for fiddly combat).

2)Lack of upgradeability: Everyone moans about upgrading, however it really isn't that hard any more with a PC. When starting out, get the best Motherboard, CPU and power supply you can afford. Everything else is easily and quite cheaply upgraded. The core of the system, the Mobo, CPU and PSU can last a good 5-7 years (my processor is 6 years old and still trucking. Multicore cpus have cut it back and I only have another year probably) with RAM and graphics card updates, and these don't need to be the best of the moment. Upgrading my 6600GT to a 8600GT cost me 120 bucks. And another gig of ram, 40 bucks. This has tided me over easily for another year and a half, and still going.

3) Useability: The PC is not only a gaming machine. We all know the many things that can be done with it. However, it can also emulate literally thousands of games and programs stretching back over 30 years. Anyone without a game to play on the PC is an outright liar! ;) The systems themselves have also gotten procedurally easier to use. Long gone are the days where you made a boot disk in dos to squeeze that last bit out of the 387/16.

4)The console to PC creep: PC gaming does have its lows compared to console gaming, at the moment....well, that moment is going fast, allow me to elaborate. Sometime in the mid to late 90's, came the dreaded customer beta testing....yes, games shipped in a non finished state, and the internet became the way in which you eventually, bit by bit, got the "complete edition". Patches of course. This has been a curse that is still rearing its ugly head today, possibly more so if that is possible....

Consoles, however, are catching up with this idiotic system. The day consoles came on line was the last day for happy, trouble free console gaming. Now there are patches for console games too! Welcome brothers! We hope you enjoy the ride! Seriously, this ended one of the only advantages console gaming had in my mind and standards are slipping faster with each year. Check out Fable 2 for the latest outbreak of lunacy in this area.

Anyway, that is my argument as to why I always choose a PC. Many will refute this no doubt, and I am sure your points will be quite salient, however with PC's becoming easier to work with, easier to upgrade and cheaper by the day the next rise of PC gaming is just starting. Couple this with the advent of Consoles slowly turning into unwieldy PC's along with the brilliant "pay to be a beta tester" business models, and you have an eventual mass of pissed off gamers asking themselves why they bother shelling out on a slab that only does one thing when you can get a powerful, easy to use beast that does it all in one! :)

Rhetoric over. Seriously, the fact I can do it all and have the genres I enjoy (to a degree these days....) on a PC makes owning a console entirely redundant.

You may now counterattack. Best of luck old chaps!

Rowdy Rob
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Logical
Bill Loguidice wrote:

I LOVE the idea of us all playing the same MMORPG, but I've always looked at it from a practical standpoint. There's too much - life, other games, etc. - to be locked into one game. (.............) That to me is the only way to get so many different people to play together. I think that's a fair and logical assessment frankly.

Yes, it is a fair and logical assessment, and a well-argued point. (It convinced me!!!) The idea of playing the same game for months and months doesn't hold much appeal to me, but I confess I do want to try an MMORPG to see what the attraction is. Heck, even games that boast "100+ hours of gameplay" scare me off, since it's highly unlikely I'll play any game for that length of time before I lose interest. (There have definitely been exceptions to that rule!)

I'm a fan of "Star Trek," so the "Star Trek" MMORPG sounds interesting.... I wonder how that will play out as a MMORPG, though? I'll have to look into that one, because I can't see the ST universe being easily translated to an RPG. Do I have to start out as an ensign on a starship that someone else commands, or do I get my own ship to command? ST might lend itself to "team-based" RPG'ing, though, which might be attractive.

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Bill Loguidice
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The only reason why I'm suggesting a practical alternative
Rowdy Rob wrote:

It appears that Matt is trying to get some online gaming comraderie from you guys, but from your viewpoints, it would require him to get an XBox 360 for you to join in! Matt, is the XBox worth considering for such purposes? It might be.... these guys aren't going to budge! And it might be fun!

As far as I can tell, the XB doesn't offer any significant MMORPG to play, though, which seems what Matt is after.

All the Xbox 360 offers as an MMORPG at this point is Final Fantasy XI, and frankly having played the beta, I thought it rather sucked. It's a significant MMORPG to be sure, but not a good one in my opinion.

I'm just saying it seems like a lost cause trying to get people to rally around one single game, particularly one that requires a monthly fee, when many have already rallied around Xbox Live, which is game "independent", meaning all games work around the same type of interface/experience. I see what goes on at Monroeworld.com and the people there - and in fact I have quite a few people on my friends list from there - GameRADIO and others too - and it's just the best way of accomplishing what Matt wants. You can still schedule times and all that if you wish, but basically people can come and go and see if their friends are on or not, what they're playing, suggest games to play, form "parties", etc., all with universal voice chat. Again, everything is streamlined and works--it's all designed around social gaming. While there is just the one MMORPG right now, TONS of games offer competitive and cooperative multiplayer, two or more, and often much more, and it's not FPS or adventure games. It's all types of games that offer this.

I LOVE the idea of us all playing the same MMORPG, but I've always looked at it from a practical standpoint. There's too much - life, other games, etc. - to be locked into one game. That's why NO ONE has responded to Matt, even those who actually play WoW. It's just too much trouble for them. The ONLY reason why Xbox Live was offered as an alternative to Matt's failed suggestion (again, a good suggestion, but one that no one is receptive to for the stated reasons) was because a lot of people were already on it and it wouldn't require any extra efforts on their parts. That to me is the only way to get so many different people to play together. I think that's a fair and logical assessment frankly.

Rowdy Rob wrote:

When the new "Star Wars" MMORPG comes out, I might join up, but it'll probably require me to buy a new, more powerful PC. If it comes out for the XBox 360, that would solve that problem. I don't see myself playing it for long, though, no matter how good it is.

There have been lots of false starts with MMORPGs on console, with only two having come out to date if you disregard the Phantasy Star games, which are not really massively multiplayer. I think the audience would be receptive - after all, it's the same type of gamers on both platforms - but there are certain hurdles. It's a risky proposition starting ANY new MMORPG - just look at the spectacular failure of Tabula Rasa - and even porting over WoW would have its difficulties. Even that could very well flop, even though it could have all the same features and more that it does on the PC.

With that said, there is now dual development of games like Star Trek Online, meaning it's going to be appear both on PC and console. Perhaps it will take something like that to prove that it works. After all, it only takes ONE hit to open up the floodgates. And it sounds like the Star Wars or Warhammer properties are being considered as console MMORPGs too. Those two licenses are nothing to scoff at either.

Interestingly, on the Wii and PS3, both of which have Web browsers, supposedly more people on those systems play Web-based MMORPGs than their PC counterparts. I have no knowledge of those free Web-based MMORPGs, but apparently that's a thriving community as well.

Rowdy Rob wrote:

Personally, I'm not really interested in online community gaming so much as the "achievements" and downloadable games on XBox Live. And the Netflix option sounds attractive too! I don't know anyone with "XBox Live," so communal gaming holds little attraction to me. I just want to play some cool games!

With how I play games and the lack of time and all that, those are my favorite parts too. Achievements bring back the old days of the arcade with trying to get the highest score. Obviously there are gamer savants out there that most of us can never get close to their scores, but the most fun is trying to beat the scores of those on your friends list. There's a separate menu item for that to see at all times how many achievements your friends got in a particular game and what their score is. It's very motivating and quite a fun way to play all these games.

Vintage Games book!
Xbox 360: billlog | Wii: 1345 2773 2048 1586 | PS3: ArmchairArcade
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.

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Rowdy Rob
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You might as well hang it up, Matt....

It appears that Matt is trying to get some online gaming comraderie from you guys, but from your viewpoints, it would require him to get an XBox 360 for you to join in! Matt, is the XBox worth considering for such purposes? It might be.... these guys aren't going to budge! And it might be fun!

As far as I can tell, the XB doesn't offer any significant MMORPG to play, though, which seems what Matt is after.

When the new "Star Wars" MMORPG comes out, I might join up, but it'll probably require me to buy a new, more powerful PC. If it comes out for the XBox 360, that would solve that problem. I don't see myself playing it for long, though, no matter how good it is.

Personally, I'm not really interested in online community gaming so much as the "achievements" and downloadable games on XBox Live. And the Netflix option sounds attractive too! I don't know anyone with "XBox Live," so communal gaming holds little attraction to me. I just want to play some cool games!

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Bill Loguidice
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Tat
Matt Barton wrote:

I guess there's just no compromising with you, Bill. Oh, well. It's probably best for AA to have a PC Gamer and a console gamer onboard (and maybe Mark as the best of both!) to maximize our coverage. Three cheers for diversity! :)

Other than WoW, what am I missing out on? Nothing. What are you missing out on? Lots.

Vintage Games book!
Xbox 360: billlog | Wii: 1345 2773 2048 1586 | PS3: ArmchairArcade
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.

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Matt Barton
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I guess there's just no

I guess there's just no compromising with you, Bill. Oh, well. It's probably best for AA to have a PC Gamer and a console gamer onboard (and maybe Mark as the best of both!) to maximize our coverage. Three cheers for diversity! :)

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Bill Loguidice
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Nah
Matt Barton wrote:

I'll tell you what, Bill. If you'll play WoW and get to level 40 on a character, I'll buy an Xbox 360. :)

You should buy it because you want to. I don't want to buy WoW. If I wanted WoW, I would have bought it already. No interest. If you have no interest in a 360 or PS3, so be it. As for me, I'm having too much fun with all the games I have on console and the occasional ones I play on PC to be locked into an MMORPG. To put it another way, if they had a good MMORPG on a console, I doubt I'd play that either, with or without a monthly fee.

Vintage Games book!
Xbox 360: billlog | Wii: 1345 2773 2048 1586 | PS3: ArmchairArcade
Bill Loguidice, Managing Director | Armchair Arcade, Inc.

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Matt Barton
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Matt's Challenge

I'll tell you what, Bill. If you'll play WoW and get to level 40 on a character, I'll buy an Xbox 360. :)

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Matt Barton
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Hahaha, thanks for the great

Hahaha, thanks for the great responses. I'm basically testing a theory about forums that seems to be validating quite nicely--controversy = liveliness. The more "aggressive" Bill and I become over this, the more people start to post! Bill and I have frequently clashed on this and other issues, and it always seems to get the blood flowing here again...!

At any rate, as I frequently tell my students, you need to explore all the subject positions to really understand an issue. In a debate, people tend to "stay the course," offering up multiple reasons for why they're right. In a discussion (at least the kind I like), people tend to shift positions, trying on different positions and see whether they're strong, soft, zany, or just plain fun. I remember wayyy back on the Monroeworld forums, this same argument came up and I made what I considered a ridiculous argument--that PC gaming was simply "more authentic" than console gaming, offering little to no explanation as to what I meant. Nevertheless, it was like pouring gas on a fire, and people really got upset over that, using ALL CAPS and what not. I was chuckling quite a bit over it.

One thing that bothers me is when people refuse to listen or at least consider other views, no matter how weird. I think that's a recipe for stupidity and serious mistakes. If I am confronted with an opinion I sharply disagree with, I like to take a moment to explore why I disagree with it so much. Sometimes I get mad, but later change my mind and go with the new opinion. This happened on World of Warcraft, actually--I kept insisting that people should just play their characters how they want and not try to change their play styles or characters based on websites and strategy guides, etc. I'd actually get mad if someone looked at my toon and said I had a moronic talent tree or was "obviously a noob," etc. What hurt, though, was that the people who offered advice always took the position of "I'm more experienced and obviously correct; you are a noob and a twit." I simply couldn't take advice from such people. Thus, I discovered it was more of an ego thing than a factual matter or even actual preference. This realization allowed me to change the talent trees and play style. What I learned from this is that you can't let pain or fear of being wrong prevent you from exploring other options. But a lot depends on whether people will listen to other views or turn it into one of those "I'm right; now admit you're wrong" type deals that arouse too much ego and defensiveness to be productive.

If I were Bill, I'd "argue" by talking about how much fun he has with his consoles, not that they're better or so on (which makes people defensive). Once it becomes a right/wrong type deal, the argument is probably lost, as the other person might feel too humiliated to admit defeat.

One more thing--this reminds me of something I heard while I was playing in a band. I would try to figure out if people liked the show or not. After every show, people would come up and usually criticize the band, saying we needed a new singer, more cover songs, better this, better that. I'd take this as a sign that we sucked. However, one day a wiser head was there, and he said -- "What they're saying is bullshit. The fact is, they sat there, on their own choice, and listened to the show in its entirety. That says they liked it. No matter what they say about it, if they had really hated it, they would have left before the show was over." I thought about that and it makes sense. If you really hate a movie, why'd you watch the whole thing? Same with games, books, etc.

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Rowdy Rob
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OMG!!!!

Wow, a gigantic thread occurred here in such a short time! Here's some of my thoughts.

Obviously, since Bill and Mark are console gamers, they are morons. We high-IQ PC gamers should feel pity for such people, since their racist, communist, console-playing ways have obviously blinded them to the true calling of life: playing games on a PC!

But seriously, folks.... :-)

I am a PC gamer, but recent discussions here have made me curious about the modern console world. If people of high regard, like Bill and Mark, are primarily console gamers, then what am I missing out on? It sounds like a lot of fun, and that's what videogaming is all about!

I'm not as "geeky" as I used to be, and I don't have as much free time to devote to gaming and hardware-tinkering as I once did, so a console sounds like a quick-and-easy path to gaming riches.

Bruce Lee's "Jeet Kune Do" martial arts philosophy basically says "go with what works for you." Some people are better punchers, some are better kickers, some are better grapplers, etc. I think this philosophy can apply to many other things in life also, in this case videogaming. I love having an all-in-one-boat appliance that I can play games on, word process, surf the Net, play movies and music, prototype designs, and so forth, which is why I'm a PC gamer.

But the modern consoles (particularly the XBox 360) seem to offer something new, and I'd like to give it a shot. The "anti-console" arguments seem less applicable to today's consoles than the older ones. Plus, the PC isn't very conductive to "social gaming." I can already see having "video game parties" at my house, even though I don't yet have a console!

Go with what works for you! As much as I like videogames, it's not life and death; let's just have some fun with whatever gaming platform(s) suits your personality and lifestyle.

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Mark Vergeer
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I am growing a little tired of this actually....

Matt,
You are doing some interesting things here - discussion wise. On the one hand you reach a point of almost consolidating the discussion and you take a more neutral stance on the subject and then suddenly you move from side to side and flaring it up again. You even go as far as to leave the impression you want to go for a 360 if there is a good Black Friday Deal on it in a thread that sort of mothered or fathered this one. You keep lashing out and make generalizing arguments. The subject cannot be viewed in the black and white manner you seem to strive for.
Come on - what are you doing here? I really care about your opinions but this is not making any sense to me. All I can do is accept the fact that you want to have your point of view and choose to rekindle this endless debate. I tend to keep my rather neutral stance on it and continue to post pro pc and pro console remarks as well as con pc and con console remarks in various threads. I don't want to choose a side and I believe I don't have to choose any side either.

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Editor / Pixelator - Armchair Arcade, Inc. | www.markvergeer.nl

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