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Common PC Gaming Misconceptions You Should Be Aware Of

If you aren’t familiar with the platform, you likely have some preconceived notions about PC gaming, most of which are likely to be wrong. This guide debunks these PC gaming misconceptions, once and for all.

FYI: PC gaming not working out for you? Check out the reasons to switch from PC to console gaming.

1. PC Gaming Has No Exclusives

Exclusive games are one of the biggest draws of consoles (mostly PlayStation, as Xbox titles are on PC). This is probably the reason people think of consoles when they think of “exclusives.” But lately, many former console-exclusive titles have arrived on PC – the God of War series, Marvel’s Spider-Man, Horizon series, The Last of Us, Ghost of Tsushima, Death Stranding – with many more to come.

Plus, PC has its own share of exclusives:

  • Dota 2: one of the most popular MOBAs in the world, Dota 2 is also a huge record-breaker in esports, with a total prize pool for The International in 2024 of about $40 million.
  • League of Legends: League, also a PC exclusive, is one of the biggest MOBAs in the world, enjoying record-breaking popularity over the years.
  • Star Citizen: it may still be in alpha, but the graphical prowess and sheer size of Star Citizen is something unprecedented. It’s a game that takes true advantage of the PC platform and all it has to offer.
  • ARMA 3: one of the hallmarks of military sim games, due to its real-world accuracy to modern combat and its advanced engine, ARMA 3 is also behind titles like DayZ, a mod that spawned from it and revolutionized the survival genre.
  • Escape from Tarkov: the multiplayer tactical FPS is a PC-exclusive and known for its punishing, realistic hardcore survival mechanics.
  • Golden indie titles, like Undertale, The Stanley Parable, FTL: Faster Than Light.

Even for multi-platform titles, PC is easily the go-to platform for the best performance, superior graphics, and more. Plus, due to emulation, PC gamers can play almost any older game, which is much tougher to achieve on a console.

Tip: miss your old PlayStation 3 games? Learn how to play PS3 games on PC with RPCS3.

2. PC Gaming Is Only for Mouse and Keyboard

Another popular misconception is that PC games are only good for a mouse and keyboard. While it’s true that a mouse and keyboard are the most dominant input methods on PC, especially for strategy titles and first-person shooters, they’re far from the only supported controllers on the platform.

In fact, this may surprise you, but just about every gamepad you can think of can be used on PC. From Xbox 360, Xbox One, and PlayStation 3 to PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X, you can connect gaming console controllers to your PC. You may get out-of-the-box functionality but could need to install the necessary drivers and software to make them work. Steam even has native support for most console controllers.

Good to know: need a controller for your PC? Check out the best gamepads for PC gaming.

3. PC Gaming Can’t Be Played on the Couch

Actually, it can. You can use a device like Steam Link or a modest HTPC to stream content from your main gaming PC to your living room TV, stream games using Chromecast, or simply carry your PC into the living room and hook it up to the TV with an HDMI cable. There are many solutions if you wish to play PC games on TV from the comfort of your couch.

You can also use something like Steam Big Picture to bypass the desktop interface entirely, interacting with your PC only through a controller-friendly method. I’ll admit that this does mean you will need to jump through a few hoops that you wouldn’t otherwise be doing with a console. But let’s face it: you’re bringing PC-level power and customization to your living room TV and couch. Isn’t that something?

Tip: want to stream PC games on another device? Learn how to do that with Steam Remote Play.

4. PC Building Is Complicated

One of the biggest weapons wielded by PC naysayers is that building a PC or buying the right one is far too complicated. While it’s true that, compared to a console, building a PC is relatively difficult, especially if you’re a beginner, it’s nothing that a few guides, tutorials, and careful planning can’t fix. Besides, you don’t need to build a PC. You can buy a prebuilt gaming PC from one of many reputable PC builder websites.

Once you have your new gaming PC, setting it up and optimizing it for your games isn’t too complicated. You just need to watch one or two YouTube videos on the topic, and you’ll be good to go. If you’re interested in gaming and technology in general, you’ll enjoy the process and learn a thing or two along the way.

Good to know: building your first gaming PC? Learn about the gaming PC building mistakes to avoid.

5. PC Gaming Is Only Possible on High-End Hardware

Just like any other hobby or passion, you can spend as much or as little as you want on a gaming PC. Even for $500 to $600 (the cost of a console these days), you can build a budget gaming PC for entry-level gaming. If you raise your budget to $1,000, you can build yourself a powerful machine capable of 1080p gaming on ultra settings. And for $1,300 to $1,400, you can get a value gaming PC that can handle any modern title at 1440p high settings.

Plus, compared to consoles, PCs don’t carry many additional costs. Consoles are known to be sold at a loss, with companies like Microsoft and Sony recovering the cost through subscriptions for online play and licensing fees for games. Sales are also much more common on PC than on consoles, allowing you to save money.

FYI: need PC hardware to build a high-end PC? These are the best components to prepare your PC for 2024.

6. High Refresh Rate PC Gaming Is a Gimmick

Another misconception among people who haven’t experienced high refresh rate gaming is that 60+ or 100+ FPS gaming is just a gimmick and doesn’t feel different from, say, a 30 FPS experience on consoles.

This couldn’t be further from the truth. 30 FPS gaming was the standard on consoles for a long time, but once 60 FPS gaming debuted on the PS4, people realized the difference was night and day. And on PC, you aren’t locked to 60 FPS either. You can tweak your settings to experience more than 120 FPS.

The balance between superior graphics and higher FPS is always a tricky one, but you have the option on PC, unlike consoles where you can only choose a performance mode or resolution mode. When you experience high refresh rate gaming on a PC, you realize that it’s truly game-changing (no pun intended).

As things stand in 2024, console exclusives are getting increasingly rare, and PC exclusives are plentiful. Controller support on PC is greater than ever on PC, and you can easily play your PC games on your TV from the comfort of your couch. You don’t need to spend much on a gaming PC or learn to build one yourself.

You get access to a superior, high-refresh-rate experience on PC that you cannot on consoles. Check out our graphics card buying guide and CPU buying guide if you’re planning to build a gaming PC.

Image credit: Unsplash

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Tanveer Singh

After a 7-year corporate stint, Tanveer found his love for writing and tech too much to resist. An MBA in Marketing and the owner of a PC building business, he writes on PC hardware, technology, video games, and Windows. When not scouring the web for ideas, he can be found building PCs, watching anime, or playing Smash Karts on his RTX 3080 (sigh).

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