Which is cheaper? PC or Console gaming?

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#1 Posted by carljohnsonCJ (505 posts) -

I play on both systems. PC gaming is cheaper if we calculate ROI , i only have to invest in decent hardware every 5 years and I'm good to go. Steam sales FTW.

Well?

Avatar image for uninspiredcup
#2 Posted by uninspiredcup (34355 posts) -

Would usually say pc gaming due to games, but pc game prices have been jacked in recent years to match, or exceed that of consoles. With Steam sales themselves becoming increasingly worse.

For example, back when Fallout 3 was released, it was £29.99.

Now, a game with a discount of 40%, has a price of around £29.99.

From £29.99, to £34,99 to £39.99, to £44.99, to £49.99, we now have jackasses like Paradox and KOEI TECMO trying to push for £54.99.

-

So, unless you're using workarounds for dodgy third party key-sites, the prices of PC games suck ass now.

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#3 Posted by Ant_17 (12729 posts) -

1 part on PC costs as much as a console, so....

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#4 Posted by Archangel3371 (28396 posts) -

I think it too variable to really tell. You can make either one as expensive or as cheap as you want to depending on if you want to keep everything up to date, when you buy your games, how you buy your games, etc. Do you want to buy all the consoles? Do you want to play your games at the highest settings? Do you want to buy all your games when they launch? Do you want to play your games from a service like Game Pass?

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#5 Posted by GoldenElementXL (3349 posts) -

I update my PC pretty much any time something new comes out. So not PC gaming

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#6 Posted by Juub1990 (8672 posts) -

Depends. If you buy a 700$ PC+games over 5 years, PC can come out cheaper. If you buy a 2000$ PC, consoles will come out cheaper.

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#7 Posted by DaVillain- (37519 posts) -

PC is a high-risk rewards. I'd rather buy a decade old PC than a "next-gen" console. Way more games, timeless PC gaming classics, emulators and no stupid paywalls and I'm talking about online only. Just remember PC isn't just a gaming device, it's a multitasking beast that can save you money and only if you don't upgrade it like every crazy year something new comes out.

I don't upgrade my PC every year and that's maybe 3/4 mainly on the GPU side and CPU 6 years or so. I been saving so much money on games when they go on sale for a month since it's release or buy from CDKeys. Gaming is cheaper on PC but this is my opinion.

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#8 Posted by BaelNergal (570 posts) -

Ultimately? It depends a lot. I find PC gaming to be more expensive, but I also have a library of somewhere around two or three thousand PC games and upgrade my computer regularly. So, uh, it's definitely going to be more expensive for me.

Avatar image for ajstyles
#9 Edited by AJStyles (1023 posts) -

PC gaming is more expensive no matter which way you look at it.

Console gaming is much cheaper.

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#10 Edited by I_P_Daily (12318 posts) -

@carljohnsoncj said:

I play on both systems. PC gaming is cheaper if we calculate ROI , i only have to invest in decent hardware every 5 years and I'm good to go. Steam sales FTW.

Well?

So what you're trying to say is that you're cheap and don't like supporting the devs who make the games you enjoy playing.

Steam sales + you = cheapskate.

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#11 Posted by l3igl3oss (53 posts) -

With PC gaming, people want to exceed the intended performance of games that were released on consoles, that is to boast 60 FPS or more and higher resolution. Sometimes, it's not what the developers had in mind, so people waste money and enjoy games like I do when they're older, but the hardware is cheaper. Just learn how to compromise performance and enjoy games with what you can afford.

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#12 Posted by dxmcat (2715 posts) -

No one has monitors. Everyone has 4k OLEDs.

:P

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#13 Edited by lundy86_4 (53622 posts) -

Depends on what you're looking for. Typically, consoles are cheaper upfront.

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#14 Edited by xantufrog (11611 posts) -

I think it depends entirely on how you invest in hardware. For me, PC is probably the same price over, e.g. a 5 year period, when all is settled. I've attempted the math before and it seems that way. But I'm sure for some it's cheaper or vastly more expensive

Avatar image for baelnergal
#15 Posted by BaelNergal (570 posts) -

@carljohnsoncj Okay, after looking it over, I have to say this: It depends on what you want and how you're measuring.

If you are speaking of average price of games, PC is second only only to mobile gaming. Because for every PC game that costs $60, there's another five good games that cost $10-$20. PC gaming also has the highest number of sales, so overall you're more likely to pay less per game than a console player. Also, unlike console games, PC games tend to remain playable for over a decade later; you don't suddenly have an entire library unplayable just because there's new hardware out. So while the hardware is extremely expensive, you have the advantage that said hardware is paying to access every single PC game ever, instead of just this generation's set of video games.

PC is also the king of modding. If you don't like how a game plays, you can often change it. With graphical mods, including official graphical mods released by developers (which are not seen on consoles), you can keep a PC game looking sharp and current in graphics while its console counterparts quickly age. Plus, with modding you can also gain access to bugfixes that devs won't do, add functionality to games not there, etc. Some games, like Skyrim and Fallout 4, are entirely different experiences on the PC as a result.

Yes, you can have Bowsette dressed as the Lich King(WoW) while fighting Tomas the Tank Engine using the demon sword from Doom in Skyrim thanks to mods. Though, you might want to limit how many you add as the engine has limits.

Console, on the other hand, you only have to buy hardware twice per gen to keep up with the latest.

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#16 Posted by Caj1986 (309 posts) -

Honestly, depends where u stay. Some parts in easter europe especially pc parts cost a bomb & console is feasible (considering consoles come with bundled games) whereas in certain regions like usa or canada or middle east, pc parts are cheaper and both are feasible to own. Other contributing factors involve what kinda pc ppl prefer, wethere its a beastly 1 or budget 1 or mid tier, so choice of parts & cost factor play a imp role in assembling 1 too

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#17 Posted by Grey_Eyed_Elf (6484 posts) -

To me console gaming is always cheaper because I buy 1-2 exclusives for those consoles a year and the consoles cost me less than £400.

I usually get high end PC's and buy 99% of my games on PC.

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#18 Edited by JoshRMeyer (10471 posts) -

PS4 will have all the games 3-4 years from now. An equivalent PC back in 2013 was roughly $600. That PC would barely, or not even meet the requirements for newer AAA games. You can factor in the PS Plus subscription, but then you'd also have to factor in all the free games and it's not required for most PS4 games(1 player games are the main attraction). I'm still playing on my N64 also, sooo my vote goes to console gaming as cheaper.

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#19 Edited by AJStyles (1023 posts) -

PC fanboys are wrong about game prices.

Physical console games rapidly drop in price. I get tons of console games for cheap and I never have to wait too long for reasonable prices.

Whereas PC game sales generally suck. Hermits even admitted recently that the steam sales are trash and have been for years.

You wait much longer for PC games to drop to insane prices if they ever do.

Also, I can and do resell my console games. Sometimes I even make a profit from reselling! At the very least, I get half my money back.

Versus buying a PC game, you can never sell. You are stuck with it. No reselling. That sucks.

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#20 Posted by Speeny (1880 posts) -

I'll say console. I'm more of a console gamer as it is.

For PC's...I spent a little over two grand on my rig back in 2015. First time investing in a gaming PC too.

It still functions fine basically 5 years later but I am not the type of person who will continuously spend money on parts.

I think with PC's in general it's nice to experience a good rig once in your lifetime...but other than that, it's expensive.

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#21 Posted by adsparky (1436 posts) -

Considering all the aspects I guess playing in console is cheaper.

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#22 Posted by hrt_rulz01 (19156 posts) -

For me, console.

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#23 Posted by mojito1988 (3672 posts) -

I buy a lot of Nintendo games and they rarely ever lower prices. So for me, PC is cheaper. If I bought more on X-box or PlayStation I might feel otherwise.

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#24 Edited by Pedro (35448 posts) -

It depends on the gamer. Different gamers have different desires which would affect the overall cost of either. Its not as clear cut as some would like to believe.

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#25 Posted by ButDuuude (1394 posts) -

Not PC and not the Switch.

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#26 Posted by bussinrounds (3164 posts) -

PC gaming is waaaay cheaper for me.

But I don't care about da newshit.

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#27 Posted by Ghosts4ever (10284 posts) -

@bussinrounds said:

PC gaming is waaaay cheaper for me.

But I don't care about da newshit.

I think upgrading for Doom Eternal and Cyberpunk 2077 will worth it.

Avatar image for clone01
#28 Posted by clone01 (27527 posts) -

I think that's a pretty ambiguous question.

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#29 Edited by Zuon (347 posts) -

My current PC consists of an Asus Z170-A motherboard, Intel i7-6700, 2x 8gb sticks of DDR4-2133 in dual channel, a GTX 1080ti, 3 HDDs of different sizes from over the years (my needs are storage centric) and an LG BD-R drive. In total, this probably cost me around $1000 total

When I originally bought the base parts of this computer after my old one spontaneously died between jobs, it only had a single 8gb stick of that same RAM and a reused DVD-RW drive from the dead machine, and it had a GTX 1070 from the old PC until I decided to upgrade for 4K. The original price for all this without upgrades was only $335. That Craigslist seller was very sympathetic to my "job hunting without a computer" dilemma, believe it or not.

So, if you stuck with my base machine, PC would definitely be cheaper, even if you did have to buy the 1070 and DVD drive separately. But after my upgrades? I'd still say it's cheaper than consoles in the long run, game wise, but still very expensive.

I only use a 1080p 144hz monitor with DSR for 4k gaming though, when the game performs well with it. DSR works better than any anti-aliasing solution I've ever tried. And modern game geometry has become so complex that native 1080p looks terrible now.

Avatar image for BassMan
#30 Edited by BassMan (10560 posts) -

You get what you pay for. If you want quality.... buy a gaming PC. If you are OK with shit... buy a console or shit PC. Both platforms can be cheap, but PC is the only platform that can consistently deliver quality.

Avatar image for pyro1245
#31 Posted by pyro1245 (5153 posts) -
@BassMan said:

You get what you pay for. If you want quality.... buy a gaming PC. If you are OK with shit... buy a console or shit PC. Both platforms can be cheap, but PC is the only platform that can consistently deliver quality.

This is probably more concise than what I was going to post....

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#32 Posted by Heirren (2224 posts) -

If you support healthy development cycles, buy consoles.

If you want to crowd fund games, buy pc.

Avatar image for BassMan
#33 Posted by BassMan (10560 posts) -

@heirren said:

If you support healthy development cycles, buy consoles.

If you want to crowd fund games, buy pc.

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#34 Posted by bussinrounds (3164 posts) -

@ghosts4ever said:
@bussinrounds said:

PC gaming is waaaay cheaper for me.

But I don't care about da newshit.

I think upgrading for Doom Eternal and Cyberpunk 2077 will worth it.

I have so many older games I'd rather play over these, it's not even worth it to me.

Unless something comes out and completely blows me out of the water, like a Hidden & Dangerous 3 or something, It's gonna be really tough to get me to upgrade my PC.

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#35 Posted by clone01 (27527 posts) -

@BassMan said:

You get what you pay for. If you want quality.... buy a gaming PC. If you are OK with shit... buy a console or shit PC. Both platforms can be cheap, but PC is the only platform that can consistently deliver quality.

I've had amazing console experiences

Avatar image for BassMan
#36 Edited by BassMan (10560 posts) -

@clone01 said:
@BassMan said:

You get what you pay for. If you want quality.... buy a gaming PC. If you are OK with shit... buy a console or shit PC. Both platforms can be cheap, but PC is the only platform that can consistently deliver quality.

I've had amazing console experiences

Everyone experiences things differently and has different standards. I hope you continue to have amazing experiences.

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#37 Posted by plageus900 (2720 posts) -

Console gaming is cheaper by far. That being said, money is no object, so it's PC gaming for me.

Avatar image for clone01
#38 Posted by clone01 (27527 posts) -

@BassMan said:
@clone01 said:
@BassMan said:

You get what you pay for. If you want quality.... buy a gaming PC. If you are OK with shit... buy a console or shit PC. Both platforms can be cheap, but PC is the only platform that can consistently deliver quality.

I've had amazing console experiences

Everyone experiences things differently and has different standards. I hope you continue to have amazing experiences.

Condescension noted, thanks.

Avatar image for miiiiv
#39 Edited by miiiiv (903 posts) -
@joshrmeyer said:

PS4 will have all the games 3-4 years from now. An equivalent PC back in 2013 was roughly $600. That PC would barely, or not even meet the requirements for newer AAA games. You can factor in the PS Plus subscription, but then you'd also have to factor in all the free games and it's not required for most PS4 games(1 player games are the main attraction). I'm still playing on my N64 also, sooo my vote goes to console gaming as cheaper.

$600 for a pc in 2013 probably wouldn't last you the entire generation but you have to factor in cheaper games and free online gaming on pc. So I would opt for a $800 pc back in 2013, more expensive up front but cheaper in the long run. That money would get you a pc with previous generation i7/i5 (ivy bridge) coupled with a radeon hd 7950 (also previous generation in 2013)

Such a pc still runs AAA games better than the ps4, except for an occasional broken port.

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#40 Edited by Litchie (24134 posts) -

Depends. Thanks to game prices, PC is probably cheaper in the long run. But as cup pointed out, PC game prices are awful now compared to before.

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#41 Posted by Gamerno6666 (6850 posts) -

PC gaming with regional pricing. Consoles doesn't even come close.

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#42 Posted by pyro1245 (5153 posts) -
@heirren said:

If you support healthy development cycles, buy consoles.

If you want to crowd fund games, buy pc.

I know you are trying to be shitty, but crowd-funding is awesome when done right and responsible for a ton of great games on both PC and consoles.

Thank you, crowd funding, for freeing small devs from the abyss that is the modern-day publisher!

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#43 Posted by Heirren (2224 posts) -

@pyro1245:

Joking a little bit, yes. However, people blame these publishers but ultimately its more about what sells. So blame the consumer not the publishers.

Thats all for now

Avatar image for joshrmeyer
#44 Posted by JoshRMeyer (10471 posts) -

@miiiiv: If you have to drop $800 at once, I'd expect it to be cheaper. If you also factor in all the "free" games you get over that same period and all the discounts on games with the subscription, it easily pays for itself and more. I also rarely ever buy a game at more than $20. Maybe once a year it'll be one for $40-$45. But I guess this is nitpicking now lol.

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#45 Posted by NoodleFighter (10454 posts) -

@joshrmeyer: You can get actual free games on PC and subscription services like Humble Bundle will give you a couple of AAA-AA and several indies a month while the most you get with PSN+ is 2 games and GwG is 4 when humble bundle gives you 8-10 games a month.

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#46 Posted by R4gn4r0k (31446 posts) -

PC gaming is cheaper for me.

Paying to play your games online is literally throwing money down the drain, while getting nothing in return in the long run. I've never had that feeling for anything PC gaming related.

I played games on my PS3 online, but can't for PS4 unless I pay extra. I played games on my WiiU online, but can't for Switch until I pay extra.

There are no hidden costs with PC gaming. You just choose the parts and manufacterers that best suit you.

Avatar image for LJS9502_basic
#47 Posted by LJS9502_basic (166864 posts) -

If you are keeping up with tech......not PC.

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#48 Posted by Nirgal (31 posts) -

It depends on how you play. I personally just buy a relatively more expensive laptop than the one I would buy anyway for work. I make sure it has a good independent card. Not anything too special, like 2060 or a bit lower.

Then I buy only game of the year editions of games during sales.

So it’s really cheap for me. I guess other people must have the best of the best. I don’t really care as long as the games are fun.

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#49 Posted by SaltSlasher (1237 posts) -

Depending on when you buy, a PC can last as long as a console. And same for console, cause if you buy now, you're looking at $200 buy-in compared to $500 in 2020.

I've found to really get good deals you need to pay for things like PS+ which aren't worth it much anymore, Gold ain't bad cause you still get 360 games.

Humble Bundle's Monthly alone covers a large portion of my gaming needs, and with PC Game Pass, all I really need is to buy the few games I really desire. The last sale, there was dozens of $5 I'd love to have, but can only get so many, I ended up with several cheap games, and picked 1 big one, Hitman 2 for OK price.

People talk about physical games and wanting to own their shit, yet, I sold every 360 game like 10 years ago, but the ones I got digital are still here, like every PC game I ever owned. I think once you build a PC, you'll love it, but I'm old fashion and still like a console hooked to TV, and Xbox just works great.

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#50 Posted by npiet1 (2475 posts) -

Consoles are cheaper.

PC (new system) $1200 for something decent or $2k for higher end.

Consoles: $400-600.

Games are similar price, but there is more on PC with indies which are cheaper, anything good though usually gets a port.

Both last about the same, however if something does go wrong it's easier to fix a PC.

Next gen I'm just getting both consoles instead of a PC. I'll get a new PC when this one craps itself. I've got a 6gb 1060 so for me to warrant an upgrade I'll want the 2080 which is still $1k, my CPU will bottleneck the GPU so I'll need to upgrade that. That's at least another $400. So it's just cheaper to get both consoles if the rumoured price is true.