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PC vs Console prettiness

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Does anyone else feel that PC games usually pale in comparison to console titles? My love affair with video games started with the Atari 7800 and then moved to the NES. I stuck with Nintendo until playstation came out...now I don''t really play anything other than Blizzard games. I dunno, I''ve just always been underwhelmed by PC games. Graphics, music, story, play control, buginess, fun factor....they always feel unpolished and contrived. They don''t have that profesional feel that console games (the spotlight ones) have. I''ve almost never been "drawn in" to a PC game. I''ve never gotten addicted to one in the same way I''d get hooked by a game for a console. I don''t think i''ve ever eagerly anticipated the release of a PC title either. Compared to a console, and even with all the new, awesome graphics card effects, the graphics always seem block and pieced together. Even UT, quake, HL, etc, didn''t really dazzle me. The animations always seem jerky, the graphics too blocky/jagged and pieced together. Whereas a console game like secret of mana or final fantasy (any of them) just seemed to ooze LUSH and VIBRANT and FUN during its era, PC games always felt static and fake. It''s probably just me, but does anyone else feel this way?

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No, its just you. I feel the way about most console titles as you do about pc ones. I see games like Halo that people oogle over forever and I always think "what is so great about that? Its been done 10 times on the pc already, and half those times it was better."

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quote:
Original post by Penance
It''s probably just me, but does anyone else feel this way?

Its just you. I''ve played plenty of crap games on both platforms (and plenty of good ones as well).

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I know what you mean. Many PC games *do* feel unpolished. But remember that console programmers have a very specific platform to program for, whereas PC game developers must take into account infinite (seems like it) amounts of different PC configurations.

Console games may feel more polished, but I''ve always felt that PC games are much more, interactive, I suppose.

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I think that anything that really requires a mouse to play with never seems to work using a controller. First person shooters just don't feel 'right' on a console, neither do those games that you could just point and click to select, move, around. However I do prefer sports, racing and fighting games on a console, although best with some mates and a few brews.

[edited by - willow01 on November 5, 2003 9:04:46 PM]

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Console multiplayer games are far more fun than multiplayer PC net games. Being able to ''wink'' at your human enemy after a sneaky headshot caps it all off for me.

I guess LAN PC gamers get this ''social'' feel for their games too.

Wizza Wuzza?

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As for PC games looking blocky it may be becayse of a sharper image the monitors give. Monitors are very clear compared to most cheap TVs. A TV can give an antialiased effect because of it's blurring. I've always found that using a controller with some PC games, such at figher games, gives you the same feeling as the consoles.

[edited by - Shane I am on November 5, 2003 9:20:57 PM]

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Well, you have to remember that anyone can develop for the PC provided they have the basic skills, whereas commercial console development nowadays is limited to experienced codehouses. Take a look at the qualifications you need to become a licenced Nintendo developer. This point only really applies when you''re looking at the vast amount of indie and hobbyist games for the PC though, because lack of professionalism isn''t really an issue for developers that can get themselves signed by a publisher.

The next thing you have to look at are the essential differences between PC and console games. I know there are many games that have been released and have been successful on both the PC and console platforms, but there always have been certain genres that are better suited to the PC and others that are better suited to consoles. If you happen to dislike FPS and RTS games, a PC probably won''t look too tempting as a gaming platform.

I notice that the two games you singled out as being particularly enjoyable are Japanese games. Japan has never really been into PC gaming, so the console market is flooded with their products. The other two big game producing countries (America and Britain, who—combined with Japan—produce 90% of all commercial games worldwide) participate heavily in the PC market, whereas the Japanese focus entirely on console games.

In answer to your original question: I''m a console gamer at heart, but there''s a lot that I like about PC gaming. I like FPSs for a start—not any of that Id crap, but games like Half-Life and realistic squad-based shooters. I like that PC games are customisable, from simple level editing to full-blown modding comunities. It can add a lot to the longevity of a game. I like the shareware scene.

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Also, when you play in a console, you aren''t distracted from the game itself. You just put the disc, turn it on and the TV, get the control and play.

In a PC you have to, turn on the machine, the monitor and the speakers if you want sound and wait, while the OS displays all the logos, sounds and stuff. You see the desktop, the icon''s the bar(if it isn''t command line), and lots of other things. You have to find where to start the game, and finally then you can play. To catch the attention PC game''s require more depth. It''s just more complicated.

Also PCs are meant to be a general use tool but consoles are made to play games. Much more specialized.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
after i bought my playstation->usb converter me and my friends play the console games on pc
mario kart 64 and goldeneye 64 are the best on pc

the only reason people tend to prefer console is it is easy to start the game up (no installing) and it never crashes or locks up.
also a reason i like console sometime is that the system requirments are always met because the game was designed for a one console type.

i only play starcraft and warcraft 3 now which are only good on pc.

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I cant relate either, and I think that if you feel like PC games are NOT par with Console games as for graphics go, I would really recomend getting a real video card, and stop buying those crappy all in one motherboards, it really makes a difference.

Aeon Games

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Nah, I have a ti4200 and nice Shuttle mobo. I think the person who was talking about Japanese vs. American games was right. I think I prefer the Japanese games for the same reason I like anime and manga: very exagerated movements and expressions, larger-than-life ways of expressing emotions, always vibrant, fun graphics.

I just couldn''t get into games like halflife where the NPCs would walk over kind of stiffly, rotate to face you with a blank expression on their face, and then a mediocre dialog .wav would play. Just didn''t like the voice acting, thought the animations were too stiff and unrealistic, textures too smeared *shrug* to each his own.

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Which 3d console games came out in 1998 that looked much better than half life? For its time, it had pretty good graphics. Remeber, nvidia was just making the Riva TNT at the end of 1998, so its not like graphics cards were very powerfull back then.

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i think the best comparison between pc and console abilities is shown in the game grand theft auto 3.

just LOOK at the two versions side by side, in the pc one you can see about 100 times farther, it isnt fogged to the point where you can see only one block down, and everything is crisp. X-Play did a segment i remember where they actually played the same portion of GTA 3 on a pc and console, and did a split view on the tv of both, it made the console versions look horrible. (like comparing doom to quake3)

i would say current day console games are about on par with those on a 700mhz computer with a gf3 (graphically speeking). Not bad, but not even close to the best. If you''ve never been drawn into a pc game you havnt played half-life or elite-force

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A lot of it has to do with what kind of artwork you like also. While these are generalizations, a lot of PCs games tend to go for a more photorealistic look while a lot of console games have a more stylized look. Some of this has to do with the strong anime influence that Japanese titles have. I find that the people that feel the same way you do tend to be big anime\manga fans.

Some of it also has to do with the amount of platformers on the console, a genre that you just don''t see on the PC that much. These games (both american and japanese) have more stylized characters with more exageratted, disney like animations. Fighting games have a lot more attention paid toward the characters and their animations, and this is another genre that you don''t really see on the PC.

Basically, I think console games tend to focus more on the characters and are more stylized, while PC games tend to have more detailed environments and focus more on realism. So, if you don''t like photorealism (or the attempt of photorealism) and you tend to focus more on the characters when judging graphical quality I can see why you feel the way you do.

In my opinion, a lot of console games are technically inferior but have cooler or more interesting artwork (btw, I like anime). I also agree that characters in a lot of PC games are not as well animated, but I think it''s because stylized characters lend themselves to animation more than realistic characters (where a few flaws in the animation can look really bad.) In my opinion, the best looking games are PC games (Doom III, Unreal Tournament 2003\4, HL2), but there are a lot more good looking console games than there are good looking PC games.

Gameplay wise, PC games tend to be more complex (even action games) than console games. Some people equate this with PC games being slow and boring, but this has always been what''s attracted me to PC games over console games (not that I don''t like a lot of console games, but I don''t own a console).

You mention you liked Blizzard, and while I think they are extremely overrated (then again, I don''t like RTS games) they have kind of a console sensiblity when it comes to development. They have more streamlined interfaces than a lot of PC Games and their artwork is for the most part more cartoony and stylized (especially in Warcraft.) Blizzard started out as a console developer, so that could have something to do with it.

Nowadays there are so many ports and designers are influenced by so many different things, it''s hard to say exactly what a PC game or a console game is anyway.

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First Consoles look better because they are on a TV. I have a TV-Tuner in my comp and the 100% zoom is 320 X 200. That''s lower than ANY operating system nowadays. I don''t even know if games still play with such a low res. TV''s can get away with it cause it does a lot of antialiasing. Have you looked closely at a TV and Monitor? I mean like an inch away. It hurts my eyes to try and see the blocks on a monitor where a TV is almost unwatchable cause all I see is Red, Green and Blue bars. Almost any game wtih 320 X 200 res on almost any vid card will run extremely well. The graphics would look great if it was shown on a TV.

Another related factor is the distance you sit from the tv/monitor. TV you usually sit farther away from than the monitor. Personnally I sit about 5-10 feet away from the TV when playing games. About 0.5 - 2 feet when playing a PC game. The farther you are away from the screen the better the game appears to look. You don''t see the details that you would normally see up close.

Secondly, which was pointed out before was that programmers have the hassle of different video cards to work with on PC''s. You only have a few different consoles to worry about... assuming you want a game on Xbox and PS2 and Game Cube. With that said... they can spend more time into programming the actual game than spending time trying to figure out what each change looks like on every computer configuration. With that said... I think it takes much more time making a PC game. Sadly to hear but many companies try to rush the game out which brings up many of the problems you have seen. BUt I think that many of the PC programmers know that they can always release a patch if a problem is found... not so with console games so there''s NO room for error.

I have a few games that will never come out for console... at least not until they get a keyboard for them. First one i can think of is Descent Freespace. The whole keyboard is used 3 times. (Every key, Every key with CTRL, Every Key with SHIFT)... then a joystick is also needed. Very complicated controls.

My last point is what is your computer like? You have to take into account the performance of the computer too. Jack up the settings to full for the game. Does the game seem jerky? Well it''s probably your ocmputer. Upgrade your comp until it''s smooth. Then you will see the game the way it''s meant to be played.

P.S. don''t feel like people are shooting you down. At least I''m not. I''m just trying to clear things up and show you that PC games can be fun and possibly be at par or better than console games. But yes... there are many games that suck but there are many games that rock!

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PC Games: developers and publishers realize they can just patch it later to fix problems, so they''ll release a half-finished game then make the patch.

Consoles: the game can''t be patched so they have to put in all their effort right away.

That''s how I see it.

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you also have to realize that when making a pc game what works on one hardware set will not work on another, unlike console where the hardware is exactly the same between. I have played console games before that if they could have been patched like a pc game it would have probably saved them. I wouldnt quite say they can release the game half finished. When that is tried the game dies within a month, the initial release is the most important, and patching problems greatly increases the longevity. I like the idea of if there''s a bug in a game i can contact the company and it will be fixed in the next patch.

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give the OP a break. he has the right to his opinion. and personally i agree with him. no, i don''t have the highest end PC in the world, but....

Gigabyte GA-8PE667 Ultra2
Intel P4/533MHz 2.4GHz
256 DDR 333MHz, could use more RAM. but too expensive right now.
ATI Radeon 7500 AiW
Seagate ATA5 40GB HDD

not that shabby. but it''s not really the graphical quality about PC games that turns me off, but rather i just don''t find them as fun.

i do prefer RPG, adventure and sports (hockey, football) games personally tho. anyhow, everyone is free to there own opinions.

To the vast majority of mankind, nothing is more agreeable than to escape the need for mental exertion... To most people, nothing is more troublesome than the effort of thinking.

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One major factor, I think, is the market share. The majority of customers in the video game market own consoles; I think the last time I saw figures on the subject, PC sales made up about a third of total games sold. With that, it''s pretty obvious that when you''re developing a cross-platform PC/console title, the effort will really go into the console version because that''s the one that two thirds of your customer base will play.

Richard "Superpig" Fine
- saving pigs from untimely fates, and when he''s not doing that, runs The Binary Refinery.
Enginuity1 | Enginuity2 | Enginuity3 | Enginuity4 | Enginuity5
ry. .ibu cy. .y''ybu. .abu ry. dy. "sy. .ubu py. .ebu ry. py. .ibu gy." fy. .ibu ny. .ebu
"Don''t document your code; code your documentation." -me

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quote:
Original post by SuperRoy
PC Games: developers and publishers realize they can just patch it later to fix problems, so they''ll release a half-finished game then make the patch.

Consoles: the game can''t be patched so they have to put in all their effort right away.

That''s how I see it.

This isn''t true, most of the time. There are a decent amount of PC games that get released buggy as hell, but most of the better games are pretty stable. One of the problems with PC games is the PC is not one platform, developers have to write code that runs correctly on all types of setups. On a console you''re guarenteed the hardware will always be the same so it''s a lot easier to test if your game is bug free, if it doesn''t crash on one X-Box it won''t crash on any other X-Boxes.

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Could some of it be to do with the console manufacturer''s quality control processes? When a developer has finished a game and the publisher is happy with it, it still has to be approved by Sony / Nintendo / Microsoft / whoever, and those approvals are bloody strict. I''ve heard of games being sent back up to 20 times, purely over small bugs.

For PC developers, as soon as the developer is done (or the publisher says they''re done ), the game is released. Certain publishers pay more attention to certain projects they''re funding - the smaller ones can often slip by. The console manufacturers don''t have quite the same vested interest in getting the game out, so they can properly examine the game and give it the same rigorous testing as any other.

Richard "Superpig" Fine
- saving pigs from untimely fates, and when he''s not doing that, runs The Binary Refinery.
Enginuity1 | Enginuity2 | Enginuity3 | Enginuity4 | Enginuity5
ry. .ibu cy. .y''ybu. .abu ry. dy. "sy. .ubu py. .ebu ry. py. .ibu gy." fy. .ibu ny. .ebu
"Don''t document your code; code your documentation." -me

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Guest Anonymous Poster
IMHO the PC pwnz any console in everything but style, technically a X-box is just a low end (733) p3 anyway, with a limited graphics card (dx8 only), but i admit they can put out some good stuff if they put time into it, but i am a graphics fr33k so i look for the most graphically intense games and crank up the settings (geforce 5900ultra) and as soon as unreal 3 comes out, we will have the "animations" and "style" down as well as over 10,000 poly characters blowing our minds with ultra-realistic perfectly bump-mapped textures and awsome lighting techniques that will put any current system to its knees, even mine... which is why im awaitng better support for 64-bit platforms

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Note that there have already been Xbox games with 10,000+ poly characters. PS2 as well, if you''re keeping track.

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