I am a long standing PC Gamer. I have played PC games since the days of Doom and Duke Nukem. I own a PS3 and an Xbox 360 but I don't play them half as much as I play PC games. I don't know how many times on forums I have seen "No one cares about PC gamers, shut up!" and it honestly just kind of drives me nuts. Now, before I start, I am not trying to incite a fanboy war here. I am simply explaining why PC gaming is important to me, and why I think it should be important to all gamers in an age where most people are trying to say that PC gaming is dead.
PC gaming has traditionally led the way for all of gaming. Most of the great innovations we see in gaming were spurred by PC games and concepts. The reason that it has led the way is because PC gaming has endless possibilities. Let me first define what I see as "PC gaming". PC gaming to me is not just the companies that make games, but also, and maybe more importantly, the community of PC gamers. The first games were made on the PC and, in my opinion; the greatest games ever made are on the PC. Games like Half-life, Starcraft, and Battlefield 1942. All of which revolutionized gaming when they were released. Half-life set the standard for the First Person Shooter genre, and Starcraft did the same for Real Time Strategy. Battlefield 1942 brought us a seamless integration of vehicle and infantry combat. We are within days of one of the most anticipated games of all time, Modern Warfare 2. Where did Modern Warfare 2 begin? On the PC with the original Call of Duty, and became popular because of the PC gaming community's support for the game.
The PC inherently has more potential than any console because of its ever developing hardware. The PC has the sheer power to spur innovation. PC gamers have taken this hardware advantage and made it their own. The ability to mod on the PC is what sets it apart from consoles, and is why PC gaming is so very important to the gaming world. Modding is the gamer's way of showing the industry that the customer is always right. We have seen countless examples, where a mod becomes popular, the companies realize it's potential, and make it into a game. The shining example of this? Counter-strike, one of the most celebrated PC titles in history. The original Counter-strike was released in 1999 as a mod and became wildly popular. Today in 2009 you can start up the original Counter-strike and find thousands of people still playing, not to mention its sequel, Counter-strike: Source. Gamers have the ability to shape the industry and show the companies what to do next.
Consoles have yet to catch up to what the PC is currently accomplishing. Look at World of Warcraft, arguably the most successful game of all time. The MMO is one of the greatest innovations in gaming in recent history and it could not have happened without the PC. Consoles are just now starting to develop MMOs. Let's not even start on the engines used to run games. Most console games use engines that were built for PC games, again a shining example, the Unreal engine. Consoles thrive on PC technology, graphics and otherwise. Even the business models that games now use are based on the PC game business model. For example the DLC model. PC games have been patching their games and providing additional content and support for years, console developers have just now caught on.
Without the PC, gaming would not be what it is today. All I am asking is that before you say "PC gaming is dead" next time, please consider all that the PC has done for gaming.