Is the Sky Falling on PC Gamers?

Much like the cycle of seasons, there is a certain process we go through every time a new console is released. Those who don't get it proclaim that PC gaming is doomed once "uber-console" is released while the rest of us roll our eyes and keep playing our games. This becomes more obvious when you read what I just read.

Gonegold has posted a bit of info regarding the PC game releases over the last four years. This is a great way to get a feel for which genres have grown (pay for play online games), which have been steady and which ones (flight sims) have fizzled. Perhaps the most important thing to note is that 1999 saw 300 PC games released and 2000, 2001 and 2002 had 251, 255 and 256 titles released each year respectively.

It can be hard not to panic when EB is slowly down-sizing their PC section while the console area grows fat with games from three successful platforms. The fact of the matter is that PC games will always be the cutting edge for graphics and certain genres will always sell well enough to justify PC releases.

The sky isn't falling just yet but you just never know, the PS3 may crush us all!

- Certis

Comments

Well, bearing in mind that it's a bit disingenuous to compare one platform (PC) to four others (xbox, GC, PS2, GBA), and worry too much about the size of their shelf spacing, I'm not that worried about computer gaming.  Overall, I'm happy to see a slight downsizing in the bulk of PC titles released.  I've often found that whatever platform sees the most software, usually sees a greater percentage of that software be absolute dreck.  The weakest games will seek out the lowest common denominator, so if that means no BMX XXX on the PC, then I say so be it.  There are just things that you can do with gaming on a PC that you can't do on a console.  Until they reinvent the interface wheel on consoles, I don't think strategy gamers, and FPS fans will find a satisfactory home away from the computer, and the market remains steady for these genres.  I simply think the two aren't necessarily mutually exclusive markets.  It doesn't seem like a stretch to maintain a healthy economy for both consoles and PCs. 

- Elysium 

Simple reason: Console has broader appeal.  Avg. Joe Six-Packs prefer spending $300 on a console that won't have performance issues with the games that come with it.

Welp, I've been playing PC games for over twenty years, and I've heard this argument re-stated over and over again. Console gamers love to pronounce the death of PC games, yet they're still here, and selling quite well too. I don't think PC games will be going anywhere.

The major advantage consoles have is that all I have to do is put in the game, turn it on, and start playing.  No installation, no patches to download, no fighting with hardware drivers.  The reward for PC gamers going through all that though, is games that are far more rich and rewarding then console games.  There's an argument to be made for either choice.

But with Live you do have to install, log on and download a patch.