My Love Affair with PC Gaming
Let me start off by clarifying that I do not love my PC at the expense of my consoles. I “heart” my Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 just as much, and I am aware of the the argument on both sides of the PC versus Console argument. This is not a rant, I will not sing the praises of the PC at the expense of the Console, this is simply a look at what makes the PC special to me.
I grew up with consoles, I have been playing since I was a small child. I did not get a PC until much later (who here actually remembers when the only way to do anything on a computer was to know DOS) and then there were only a few basic games that I could play, none of them amazing enough to mention here. I enjoyed playing around on the PC, and when we got the Internet, I became exposed to an entirely new world. That world did not, however, involve PC games. I did not play Counter-Strike, I never heard of Diablo, Doom was a name I saw referenced in chats on occasion.
World of Warcraft is what opened the door to the PC gaming world, though my friends were the ones that encouraged me to explore more than console games. They clued me in to Steam, and I started playing Team Fortress. It was then that I realized how much I enjoyed FPS on a PC. I had always found precise control of shooters difficult on consoles, and the mouse and keyboard offered a better solution than any controller, no matter how good, could give me.
My friends did not stop at introducing me to Team Fortress however, I got Half-Life and Portal, I got the chance to experience a LAN and games like DotA. I was blown away by this new (to me) world I had been introduced to. Then I discovered mods. Games I had enjoyed, such as Dragon Age: Origins could be altered in order to enhance the experience? WHAT!? This concept was completely new and totally appealing to me. To top it all off, the same friends that had introduced me to PC gaming, helped me build my very own PC.
The modding, the extra control, the ability to make a game truly mine, was all great, but there was something even more priceless about being able to put my own PC together. I took pride in being able to see just how and why my computer worked the way it did, learning how to install everything. I made my computer, something I can not say about my PlayStation or Xbox and there is something inherently sweet about building your own machine that really makes it yours. That is not to say that I suddenly know everything about computers, I am still learning and while I grasp the basics, I do turn to my friends for more technical help, but I understand my PC in a way that I can never understand my consoles.
Granted my consoles will last longer, barring any unfortunate soda spills or electrical surges, before I have to consider replacements, and there are some games that I believe work better on a console, but my PC holds a special place in my heart.