Author Topic: If I play a lot of console-style games on PC, am I a PC gamer?  (Read 8107 times)

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Offline JonLeung

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If I play a lot of console-style games on PC, am I a PC gamer?
« on: November 02, 2022, 11:39:21 am »
What does it mean to be a PC gamer?

So, here's the context - I'm a Nintendo fan (mostly because of its exclusives), but I definitely play a lot of games on PC. I grew up with a lot of classic point-and-clicks, so I definitely was then in the 1990s, and for a lot of the big-name third-party games now, I play on PC for the graphics and power.

But the kicker is that I don't really play a lot of games meant for, or exclusively for the PC, at least not right now. I don't CURRENTLY play a lot of high-end FPSes/RTSes/MOBAs or those genres more suited for a mouse, aside from point-and-click adventure games. I'm just currently not in the mood for FPSes or RTSes or MOBAs. (I avoid city-building sims because I was once TOO addicted to them.)

If you look at my Steam library, there are a lot of game series that are either better known, or equally known, as console games. Street Fighter. Mortal Kombat. Tekken. Dead Or Alive. The King Of Fighters. Final Fantasy. Resident Evil. Tomb Raider. Batman: Arkham. I plan on playing the recent PlayStation-brand PC games, including Uncharted, Spider-Man, Horizon, God Of War.

I play any kind of game, whether console, handheld, PC, mobile, and despite being a Nintendo fan I'm not going to say no to an Xbox or PlayStation game (especially if they end up on PC). I do play the occasional PC exclusive, I mean, games are games. I don't think I like the term "PC Master Race". But if I'm not playing many PC exclusives, but playing a lot on PC, am I a PC gamer? Because my experiences are almost identical to that of a console gamer.

TL;DR: I play on PC, but not PC exclusives. Am I a PC gamer?

Offline TerraEsperZ

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Re: If I play a lot of console-style games on PC, am I a PC gamer?
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2022, 05:03:07 pm »
I'll repost my answer from the Discord...

To me, being a PC gamer means taking advantage of/compensating for a computer's customizability. You can improve your experience by playing with a game's graphics and controls, installing mods, editing the game's memory or files, etc.

You also have to make sure your particular combination of hardware and software is supported by the game and if not, spend some time troubleshooting.

It's a much more DIY approach as opposed to consoles and handhelds where you can just... play.
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Offline JonLeung

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Re: If I play a lot of console-style games on PC, am I a PC gamer?
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2022, 09:38:45 am »
I'll repost my answer from the Discord...

Indeed, I made a Discord server because it was requested and seemed like the cool (if overdue) thing to do, but now I wonder if it's fragmented the (limited) discussion we have here on VGMaps.

To me, being a PC gamer means taking advantage of/compensating for a computer's customizability. You can improve your experience by playing with a game's graphics and controls, installing mods, editing the game's memory or files, etc.

You also have to make sure your particular combination of hardware and software is supported by the game and if not, spend some time troubleshooting.

It's a much more DIY approach as opposed to consoles and handhelds where you can just... play.

Indeed, while there are some differences, once you get into the game experience (as in, the gameplay and the story), a game on PC versus the same game on a console is the same.  Yes, you can tweak the graphics, framerate, or take advantage of platform-exclusive features, but when I talk to someone about a game, it's always the gameplay and story we talk about, the "what was played", rather than the "how it was played".  So why is there so much of a division based on the latter?

I do think that consoles are getting more complex (having to be online, require an account, log in to a profile, have cloud saves) and expensive, the gap between consoles and PC is lessening and lessening, especially with their game libraries being so similar (with the exception of Nintendo, who is the only one that seems to know what exclusives are).  So when a computer gamer tells me that they don't even look at console games, or a console gamer pretends that PC gaming is beyond them, I think it's rather sad.

I'm going to have to word this carefully... while gaming is mainstream and people of all kinds can and do play them, I think there is still a disproportionately large segment of less-socially-conscious people that play video games.  This should not be surprising because games can be solitary.  Or when enjoyed with others, there is still anonymity.  So we end up with some people that are a little reclusive and identify too much with what they play on - being a console gamer or a PC gamer is a thing to identify as, and they might not have the tact or the tolerance for things they aren't into, or don't have the time to get into, so it's easy to brush it off as "it must be inferior, or I would have gotten into it already".  Again - I am not saying gamers are socially inept, but I think a lot of socially-challenged people are likely to find gaming as their hobby.  Which is why you have "console wars"... you don't really hear about "wars" of other lines of products or entertainment.

As I mentioned on Discord, I wasn't sure why I asked the question originally - I think part of it was I wanted to know if anyone else thinks about games and gaming in the same way I do.  And I realized after I asked, that perhaps I was subconsciously wanting to challenge the notion of the division between PC and console gaming.  Is it about the hardware, or the software?  Because when I'm playing "console" games (that is, games equally or better known on consoles) on PC, then I'm a PC gamer in the hardware sense, but as I said, when we talk to each other about our game experiences, it's always about the software.  And if game experiences are about software, it seems silly for people to snub someone just because of superficial things like having or lacking the option to tweak the resolution or framerate or something equally ridiculous.