Switching to PC gaming for the first time? The options you have will overwhelm you. The gaming experience on a laptop or desktop is a little different from that of your regular console. If you are new to PC gaming, you need some tips to enhance your experience.
Professional PC gamers agree it is a bit more complex than regular console gaming. There are more hardware options to tweak your performance, depending on how much time and resources you want to commit to it. The tips below should give you a head start.
What sort of gaming experience excites you the most?
Different people have different interpretations of PC gaming. Some may begin their PC gaming experience with mild games like Angry Birds, while others choose PC gaming to explore the height of blood violence with pro-level challenges. It’s a matter of choice.
If poker and puzzles thrill you, a moderate PC gaming experience is all you need to be satisfied. An average PC should be able to handle that with ease. Those searching for high-end games in the category of Witcher 2 or Warcraft III, a more dedicated gaming computer should be your prime objective. This would mean getting a PC with the right specs to handle such load.
A custom unit should be the least of your worries
Customizing your PC is usually the first thing that pops into the mind of new PC gamers, but this is not the best option. Customizing your PC without learning about the hardware resources needed for a great gaming experience is like going into a battlefield without learning about the enemy first. It may turn out that the weapon you have is not the right one to face the enemy.
Take the time to learn about the memory/RAM, processors, graphics cards, and so on. As a beginner, get a budget gaming PC like Dell or Alienware. Test it out to see if it offers you the experience you are aiming for.
You can stop at a LAN center and ask them what kind of unit is best for a starter. Make sure you take note of the specs. If you are aiming for a high-end gaming experience, then you definitely do not want to buy a PC that fails to run the hottest titles. While at the LAN center, try your hand at different games to see if there is any remarkable difference. Research paves the way for a better gaming investment.
Setting up Steam and Origin
If you want to join the online gaming adventure, the most popular option you will find is Valve’s Steam. It has a vast community where it is easy to become a member. The Steam platform will automatically update your game.
The first step is to register for an account. Joining the platform is free but you will get a prompt for your credit card details to make purchases. Once you are done with the registration process, you can add friends, buy discounted games, and start posting on subject boards.
Origin is also a good platform, with a great service. It has a huge number of EA offerings as well as third-party offerings. The registration process for Origin is a little more complex to that of Steam. There are other retailers, namely GameStop, Amazon, and Green Man Gaming which also offer digital purchases.
Look out for great deals
Unless you simply have to play a specific game on launch day, there is always a better bargain if you hold off a while. There are ways you can get great prices on games, particularly if you are a member of Steam.
Only buy games that are on flash sale, games that are selling for the last day or grab daily deals. Look beyond Steam to websites like Gamefly and Amazon, which often offer better prices. The good news is that the games will activate on Steam as if you bought from there.
The best possible prices are not always hard to find if you hold out a little. You can also use websites like IsThereAnyDeal.com to keep track of the prices of the games across a large archive of websites.
For expert advice and tweaks related to games, you can always hire a professional from freelancer.com.
Pick the right accessories
You can enhance your PC gaming experience with the right set of accessories, including the mouse, the best gaming keyboard, and a gamepad. Different accessories fit into different kinds of games. For example, first-person shooters are better with a gaming mouse.
For a better picture, get a good monitor. If you want to hear conversations better, get a gaming headset. There is a hardware spec designed to enhance whatever part of the game you desire. SteelSeries is famous for churning out breathtaking gaming mice like Call of Duty: Black Ops II and Diablo III products.
There are games that are just better with a gamepad - irrespective of what the fans of mouse and keyboard will tell you. Almost all PC gamers love the Xbox 360 gamepad, but there are lots of options in the market. Most games support gamepads but if one of your favorites doesn’t, use a tool like JoyToKey to make it work.
Back up your saved games
PC hard drives often fail for no justifiable reason. This may mean the end of all the games you saved on it. You may also want to play your favorite game on another computer, but your progress is not saved on it.
Luckily, Steam has a built-in Cloud feature, which can synchronize some of your saved games (although it is not always reliable). You can also try out a tool like GameSaveManager. This awesome manager backs up your game and synchronizes it with Dropbox. Alternatively, you can manually synchronize your saved games with Dropbox. Another good step is to copy the save folder to an external drive.
Enhance your gaming experience
You will be in a better position to enhance your PC gaming experience when you know the ins and outs. Unlike a regular console, PC gaming is a bit more complex because you have to make a choice between different hardware, as well as entertain other tweaks to enhance the experience.
For example, if your PC is running on Nvidia graphics card, you can head to their website and download the GeForce Experience software. The function of the software is to keep your GPU’s drivers up to date. You can also tweak individual games with this software to enable them to run at optimal graphics settings.
Change What You don’t Like about The Game
Unlike regular consoles, individual gamer programmers create mods you can install on the system to give the game a whole new experience. This often gets rid of something you do not like about the game. Mods can even brighten the graphics of the game, enhance the menus, or add entirely new missions and features.
Investing in hardware to enhance your PC gaming experience is rewarding but if you take your time to learn about PC games, you may discover you didn’t need much in the first place and it can save you a whole lot of money.
As long as you are ready to commit time and resources, you will move quickly from a beginner to a moderate gamer, or even become a pro within a short time. Finding the right hardware holds the key.
What was your experience like when you first moved to PC gaming? We are itching to hear your story, so kindly use the comment box - and feel free to share with your friends.