How I Became A PC Gamer
by, 6th February 2017 at 04:55 AM (708 Views)
While I was growing up in my parents house, my access to video games was quite limited. You see, my parents were the old-fashioned type. I look back on it now and I'm very thankful for it in a weird way, at the time, it seemed... well it kind of sucked! I wasn't allowed to have video games nor was I allowed internet access, I had to do things like use my imagination and read books. I studied, I doodled and I came up with other ways to entertain myself and I think I'm a lot better off now because of it. But at the time it sucked, because what little time I did have with video games, I knew that I loved to play them, all of my friends had them, and I didn't.
My first real video game experience was with the Nintendo 64, that a cousin of mine had. I was situated in Liverpool at the time, and my cousin was living by Milton-Keynes. When he visited I always hoped that he brought his N64 with him. We would play super smash brothers, Mario kart and various other games on split screen and we really enjoyed it. It was fun as I grew older and I would spend the night at friend’s houses, I would play video games with them and some of my favourite video game memories were from playing split-screen games on the GameCube or the original Xbox. In fact, I remember, my best friend had an Xbox and all sorts of systems at his house and the first real quote unquote hardcore games that I played (if you don't count the super smash brothers on the N64 and at that time was probably too young to really give it you know the credence I would today) was halo combat evolved. I remember when I first played it was extremely interesting to me, moving with one thumb stick looking with the other shooting, reloading, throwing grenades and blasting aliens, it was all new to me. But it was thrilling and i loved it, I loved playing that game, I remember how bad I was as we all were. I struggled to move, to hit and to perform every basic function while he was effortlessly queuing through the alien hordes like a hot knife through butter.
Over time I got better and better and better, which was strange because of how little I actually got to play video games; I became very very good at them. It was the fact I was so good at them or I look back and think I was better than my friends, which was odd because they're the ones who lived with it and I didn't. It was one of the reasons I like them so much, because i did so well, it gave me a sense of accomplishment, it gave me a sense of pride. I suppose you could say as a kid being better than your friends at video games - that makes you feel good!
So as the years went by, I never had real access to video games, until I finally got enough money to where I knew, I could afford them for myself. Of course the ever looming problem was, I still wasn't allowed to have them. My parents always looked down at video games, as “it's a waste of time”, “It rots your brain”, blah blah blah. Now, I had an aunt, who actually bought a GameCube. My aunt is a very young-at-heart kind of person and she bought a GameCube to play very casual games. We are talking animal crossing, mario, kart double dash - that was kind of what we played. Additionally, whenever I had the opportunity, when we were going to my aunt's house, (or whatever the occasion was, where the family had to get together) sometimes they would bring it and some of my favorite games to this day were on the GameCube. Resident evil 4 I originally played that at a friend's house and eventually bought it, when I was totally under 18. Which made me felt like such a criminal at the time, it just shows how things change. But I like this game so much, in fact I think I own it on four systems, GameCube, Xbox, on my brothers wii and I also have it on the PC. Because, you see, my brother, in the same year that halo 3 came out for the Xbox, bought a wii. I was so pissed, I sat wondering “Why? Why would you buy a wii, get an xbox!” As it was before I bought my Xbox and I played a lot of wii games as well and it was it was an ok system. We played it because it's kind of all we had in the house. We were barely allowed to touch it, but we snuck it when we could.
My history with video-game-playing involved a lot of going behind the the back of household authorities, but before I really ended up getting an xbox, the systems I played were nintendo games; playing on Nintendo systems, my aunt had the GameCube and some of my favourite games were on that GameCube resident evil 4 and battalion wars, which I really liked. One of my favorite games of all time to this day remains baten kaitos the eternal wings in the last ocean, a mouthful of a name. It took me about 60 hours to beat that game and it was an adventure. I remember beating it where I was sitting and man, that was one of the first experiences that I had in beating one these long (especially single-player) sorts of games. It was the feeling of accomplishment, it’s like finishing a really, really long book. The reality of it was, I had access to a GameCube and a wii every once in awhile, and a DS i played whenever I could. Which was much easier because it's a lot obviously a lot smaller so i can play at night, while I was laying in bed, I could even lean over the side of the bed and play, pretending I was sleeping.
One thing I didn't get to play often, if at all was the Xbox and that was where all the the hardcore games were, all the adult games, that everyone else played, I just didn't have the access to those. So it got to the point where I finally had enough money to go out and buy an Xbox 360. But I still wasn't allowed to have video games, that didn't stop me though. I went to gamestop and I bought 1. I recall the deal at the time meant, if you buy an Xbox, you receive two games that are £20 or less, for free. So the two games that I started out with on the Xbox, were mass effect and bioshock, two of the best games ever and as far as I'm concerned, fantastic games; I love them to death. But for the years after that, the Xbox was really all I used for gaming. I did use the DS every once in awhile, but it was primarily the Xbox 360.
It was probably around early to mid 2013, before the release of the new consoles, where I had been sort of keeping up with this Xbox one idea that was coming out, but you know I wasn't sold on it. It was at that point where the performance of games and the experience that I was getting from my Xbox really was starting to disappoint me. Games were releasing and they looked poor or they ran terribly and I'd only played on consoles, so frame rate to me was you know whatever works, works. It got so bad though, especially with games like Halo 4 and sniper elite v2, which was the last game I bought for the Xbox 360. Games just started to disappoint, they ran poor and they looked poor. This is coming from somebody who achieved max rank on battlefield 3, which was one of the worst looking and worst running games on that system.
During the time I played on both, I remember when I was playing with my friends on the Xbox and I couldn't help but gush about how good things were on the pc and said
I mean it feels like you're really deserving all that stuff you do. It’s so much smoother the 64 players guys on PC it's just a whole another game than playing this 24 person garbage. Trust me!Guys listen everything they said it's true it runs so much better, it looks so much better, so much more clear, aiming is easier, there's no aim assist, it's all you doing that stuff. You feel like you're the one who earns everything that happens to you, you're not being helped out by a computer.
Maybe that's why I ended up making these pro PC posts because I’d got to the point where I knew what it was like to play on console and I remember how my eyes were opened when I went to PC. I wanted other people to have that better experience as well. I wanted them to share in my gaming joy, for the most part they said "Okay, okay we get it. Yeah we know, we know." But I couldn't help but wonder, do they really know? If they haven't tried it, then they don't. Right now I play a lot of my games that are easily over 100 FPS. Telling people what that's like, for those who have never experienced it, I don't know that they'd know or be able to comprehend what it’s like. For instance, I've never actually seen true, native, real 4k with my naked eyes, I never have. I’ve just never been in a position where I've seen a screen that's running native 4k. So I can only imagine what it's like, I can't actually know what it's like. In the same way that someone who's never played above 30 FPS, they could never really, truly know, what playing at 144 FPS really feels like, they can only imagine!
G-sync for instance, anyone who has ever played without G-sync can’t truly understand what it really is or what it looks like, or feels like, until they play with it, or see with their own eyes. It's so difficult to get these concepts across to people now that I look back on things. So after being disappointed enough in these games, (that were coming out for the Xbox 360, near the end of its life) and when people are saying, “oh but games get better as the console progresses” (maybe a little bit, sometimes) the Xbox 360 had been out for so long, it was really starting to show it’s age. It became quite a problem to me, so I finally decided at one point, it was time to try out the PC; so online I went.
I researched a bunch around what the parts of a computer did, what I needed to have and I went and got myself a modestly priced rebuild. I also got some games for it and it blew the Xbox out of the water in pretty much every sense! Cheapo monitor, default mouse and keyboard, a very simple setup. I didn't have the fancy peripherals such as g-sync, I didn't have anything amazing, nor did I have anything that was quote-unquote gamer gear. So there was a couple of months there, where I had an overlap of still playing on the Xbox and I also had this PC, it was a very middle-of-the-road PC; very modest. It was still kicking the crap out of the Xbox in terms of how good it looked, the games I could play, and the frame rate - it was just so much better. Knowing the capabilities of this pc, I was able to see just how good this experience could be and I upgraded. Over time, I got very passionate about it, and here i am today!
But it was tough to kind of leave the Xbox friends that I had behind it just got to a point where I was so used to seeing what PC could give me, that playing the games on the Xbox had gotten to a point where it was not fun, it was a slog it was difficult to play. I realise how difficult aiming was, I just I knew there was something that could be so much better. It's easy for someone to play at 30 FPS if 30 FPS is all they know, but once my eyes had been the open to 60fps at 1080p having the good visuals on PC, going back was just more difficult by the day. The games on the Xbox were just so inferior to the ones on the PC is hard to go back.
Once you get to that level of frame rate, the good visuals and the resolution once you have that freedom and you have this much wider variety of games. Once you have all that it is so immensely difficult to go back to the Xbox and play these games and it was a chore. Battlefield 3 was one of the first multi-platform games that I played on both but it had sold me. Battlefield 3 awful on the Xbox it was. Looking back I'm shocked at how I was able to play it long enough to make rank. It was what I was used to it was easier for me to accept but once my eyes had been opened to the standards of PC gaming it just nailed the coffin of playing on console. The last game i bought for the Xbox with sniper elite v2 and I felt like I wasted my money. It ran bad it looks bad it just wasn't enjoyable because of it and after that I went full PC. I just don't see myself ever going back, I look at the Xbox one, I look at the PlayStation 4 and it's just such a downgrade. I couldn't imagine ever going back, PC gaming is what i do as a gamer I play on PC there are just too many advantages for me to go back. I don't even feel the desire to play one casually here and there I don't even feel any sort of need to buy one for the exclusive I've got more games and I know what to do with, I'll never play all the games on PC there's just too many. It was such a huge eye-opener when I especially had upgraded my GPU from my original I think I started out with a 550TI or something, but i do remember making you know my upgrades and seeing that huge boost in performance. It was really really eye-opening to me, it was something that I had heard about but seeing it in person really just drove the point home the 550 ti to 770 have or whatever I had to 980 TI. It was just seeing these leaps of the performance in the visual just getting better and better and better. Knowing that I had a hobby that I could put money into if I felt like I wanted it and I really could get advantages out of it that's something that really appealed to me.
I think for a lot of people who play only on console it it takes seeing to believing when PC gamers talk about high frame rates, when they talk about the resolutions, when they talk about all this stuff, it's one of those things you have to see with your own eyes in front of your face to really be able to appreciate and understand how much better it is. It's not the point now where while I used to play games at 30fps and that was fine with me now playing at 30fps is just torture, I can't do it if the game runs at 30fps I... no, no I can't do that. it's painful to play but i suppose humans can get used to anything and I one time was indeed used to having that be what I did. 30 FPS gaming with a standard sub 1080p was just standard. Just looking back it really is kind of shocking how quickly when i sat down with it and installed battlefield 3 for instance and started to play it finally on a PC 64 players instead of the 24 max on the Xbox I had all this stuff and all of the frame rates, the resolutions, I had all the graphic options, i have 64 players, all the openness of the platform all this stuff, hitting you at once it was such a such an eye-opening experience. It was I instantly I knew I could never go back this was just so much better.
The problem was I just had to decide at one point that I was going to make a leap, I was going to go out and I was going to buy 1, i was going to spend admittedly not an immense amount of time online just doing a little bit of research, but for a lot of people they see that is this is this big gap that they have to cross, this mountain that they have to climb, when it's really not a big deal especially. nowadays when you could slap in just some budget GPU right into your PC and bam you have something more powerful than a modern console. People see this gap is something big it's too much trouble it's too difficult I can't do it, I can't do it. I always notice that it's always the console guys who say all it's too complicated i'm just not smart enough to do it and I've never said to my knowledge that the PC was too difficult for people, that the PC was just too complex for a console gamer to understand or to run.
I don't consider myself a very tech savvy person but even I have basically no trouble running these games on the PC it's hard to imagine at one point I was a hardcore Xbox fanboy when people brought up pc's I said the same thing then too, now i make rebuttal blogs about.Now that I game on PC it's easy to see how that was a hyperbole, i can see that all those issues with PC gaming (and there are some issues with PC gaming as their issues of everything) how they were greatly exaggerated this gaming community of mine has experienced the level of success and growth that, i really had no intention of having i started as just a little hobby. It's a little hobby to do online and make some blogs and now i'm almost at 1000 registrations on the forums and that is really odd to me. I mean it's really surreal to even think about again this is just a little side hobby for me, I don't have a patreon, but this is still just a side hobby for me I have other things to do I've got a life I've I like to just enjoy myself when I'm gaming.It's complicated games always crash there's no games for it is too hard you gotta do all this fiddling with it takes too much trouble
So to think that I would never have believed that one day I would become this relatively in these circles well-known pro PC gamer. But well I guess that's one of lifes Pleasant little surprises. A lot of times I kind of wish my forums would get a little smaller, so that i can just kind of keep track of it. For me who was once a staunch Xbox console fanboy and how now I've turned into a huge advocate of PC gaming and pro-consumer video game advocate. I thought i'd make this blog the kind of tied people over while I make my thought my quote unquote review on battlefield 1, So that will be out soon. I'd love to go part-time at my job and spend more time with IGN.com I would like to have more time to spend to dedicate to communicating with my fans. To putting out more stuff maybe to having hang out with people i would like to do that. It's just I just only have so many hours a week and I want to enjoy myself first off and I have a full-time job so that will be for that.
So there you go that's why i'm a PC gamer now, that's how I got to where I was, that's my short (this is short for me) short history of my gaming experience growing up so thank you for reading thanks for coming around and I'll have some stuff out soon and again if this IGN thing takes off, if I can stop spending time at a full-time gig and have more time to be at home here making content i would love that would be fantastic have a good day have fun playing your games no matter of their own console or PC or handheld or anything in between and i'll see you guys soon.
Edited and proof read by Stephanie