PC Gaming not dead...yet
Looks like Daniel Morris over at Next Generation doesn't think that Pc Gaming is dead just yet. Why? Because of the currently changing ditribution models for delivering gaming content to pcs. While I don't think PC gaming will ever die in the same way that atari isn't really dead since there are a few dedicated souls out there who still play the antique console, why would I pay $4,000+ for a good enough pc to play a game that I can play on my Xbox 360 or Playstation 3 for $300-$400? A game that looks as good, if not better, than it's pc counterpart. Doesn't PC rule online gaming though? Not anymore.
In the console environment, you get to thrash (or get thrashed by) your friends online in recent and popular games. While your trigger finger may not twitch as fast when using an actual controller as opposed to a mouse and keyboard, the end result is the same. Online fraggin and noob taunting for all. Well, what about the casual gamer? I can only play Bejeweled on my pc and I gots to have my Bejeweled on my Bingo nights! Then my dear old Grandma, you need the slow-burn magnificance that is the Xbox Live Marketplace on the Xbox 360. Bejewled? No problem.
Sure Civilization 4 was awsome on the PC (so I've heard...) but is that something that cannot be achieved on the Xbox 360 or the Playstation 3? I doubt it. Even if Civ 4 could currently only be achieved on the PC, it won't be long until it's one upped by Civ 5 (or something similar) on a next-gen system, Playstation 5 or the Xbox 720 if need be.
So why are strategy games like Civilization 4 way more popular on the PC than a console. Simple, because the people who dig these type of games are more likely to have good enough PCs to fully enjoy. The early adapters if you will. These early adapters usually have the latest gaming console hardware too don't they? They do but the best PC games were usually PC exclusive. I say were because the best PC franchises are coming to the Next Gen systems. Half-Life 2 even came out for Xbox for crying out loud (nevermind the fact that it may have issues on the Xbox 360...shhh). You'll even be able to play some of these next-gen Xbox 360 games along side pc users, Final Fantasy XI being a prime example.
In the interest of full disclosure, the last time I was really into PC gaming was back in the Warcraft III days so I don't have the latest and greatest. Right now, I only see Massive Multiplayer Online gaming as PC gaming's biggest plus. As soon as the MMOG takes off on the console's (as it's bound to do)...I see pc gaming declining even further. Am I just jealous because I can't partake in the World of Warcraft glory without my pc's emitting a thick foul smelling black smoke, signaling the death of my integrated Intel Video Graphics card? Not really, I'm not in a rush to pay $15 a month to have the life sucked out of me just yet. If I was able to get the same soul-sucking experience for around $30 without having to mortgage all of my worldly possesions...I may be interested enough to take a serious gander. But hey, Brian D. Crecente of Kotaku fame doesn't even play WoW that much so us console-over-pc-ers can't be missing too much can we?