I was reading an Ars Technica article a few weeks back that was ruminating on the benefits of PC gaming outside the usual “graphics are prettier” argument that’s tossed at console fanboys. I’ve long straddled the fan boy arguments. Entering the rabbit hole only for the creative copy and memes. Anyways, this article, which I was unable to find in 10 minutes of searching, was discussing how great being a PC gamer is. I kinda chuckled while reading it. Not because it was grossly inaccurate or adding to the flame wars but because it was at odds with my personal experience at the time.
You’ll recall numerous issues with Comcast. Complications with box heating. Drivers causing random crashes. Upgrade woes followed by authentication conundrums. Juggling all these issues while streaming 2-3 times a week was an arduous task. Hence my reaction to the article, the mild chuckling to myself. Yes, of course PC gaming has come a long way despite what seemingly every Wall Street analyst and “market research” company espouses. Steam has consolidated the distribution market, making Valve millions. There’s no better time to be an indie developer. Games are more often than not released on multiple platforms, including PC, than not. Multiplayer largely remains completely free and the free-to-play genre continues to explode everywhere. General support and compatibility are better than ever.
It’s not all butterflies and roses. Valve’s success has, predictably and unfortunately, caused numerous copycats to now fracture that distribution market, which secondarily hurts the general community. Kickstarter, Greenlight and campaigns like them have begun stumbling over hurdles, including ridiculous wars between developers (a topic for another day), with increasing frequency. Batman: Arkham City. The aforementioned fracturing communities return. Good lord, no more INIs to edit? What shall I do with all my free time?
My point is that there’s continued room for improvement. Let’s not rest on our laurels. We should continue to support those that push the envelope. Demand, rationally, our money’s worth and hold those that make promises to them within reason.
While you’re ruminating over the above you may want to distract yourself with our game of the week.