Archive for October 16th, 2012
PC gaming is far, far from being dead. I know it sounds like a defensive statement coming from one who grew up on it, but a little research and an observant eye will tell you that though the console and mobile platforms are growing, there is a healthy and growing amount of PC gamers out there, especially those playing online shooters and MMORPGs (I tend to be a single-player RPG player myself, but that’s probably because I’m inherently antisocial).
Now that I convinced you to keep the faith and game on the PC, the next thing you’ll probably want to know is how to do it without selling a kidney. It’s true that some prebuilt gaming systems and custom enthusiast rigs cost along the lines of a couple of thousand dollars and above. With their elaborate cooling setups, cutting edge components, and awesome styling, it’s no big surprise why they can cost so much.
The good news is that you do not really need multi-video card, water-cooled, 1000W+ setup to enjoy PC gaming. You don’t need a mean-looking, rugged military-grade PC chassis to go with it, either (unless you are playing from an actual war zone). A decent PC won’t break the bank and deprive you of an internal organ. Below are some quick and sensible tips on just how to keep the costs down and the enjoyment factor up.
Before you make your prospective upgrade or buy a new rig altogether, don’t do so at the spur of the moment. Google is your friend; research the heck out of the components you want to purchase for your system. After choosing the right part/s based on reviews (avoid the “sellout” sites for that), forum discussions, and owner feedback, start your research anew for the right place to purchase it.
There are many online retailers out there, and just because shop A sells item X cheap doesn’t mean they will also give you a good deal on the next component you need. Just make sure you keep the receipts and boxes handy for all of the products you buy, just in case you have to RMA.
It shouldn’t have to tell you, but I will anyway: keep within your budget. Do not buy something you cannot afford.
Function Over Form
I know enthusiasts tend to take great pride in their hobby by purchasing parts and components for their bling factor; it’s not so different from people who “pimp their rides.” Since you are watching your budget, it is more important that you consider what you see on the screen and hear over the speakers rather than how good the computer looks while it’s just sitting there.
Go for simple but reliable input devices, a well-ventilated chassis, and a monitor big enough for you to be able to appreciate the games you play (hint: LCD flat panels beyond 24” are a little bit of a waste if your monitor sits just a foot or two away from your face).
Research, Research, Research
I really emphasize the part about reading up and looking for product information and reviews even before seeing or buying the actual component. Because PCs are a very scalable and open platform with literally hundreds of hardware manufacturers and software developers making programs for it, it’s unavoidable that there will be little glitches and compatibility issues (I can hear the Mac fanatics snickering at this).
The best you can do is make sure the parts you buy will work as well as possible for the kind of games you prefer to play. With today’s games being mostly 3D-rendered, it’s always a good idea to read about and choose the best video card for your budget. You can never go wrong with a lot of memory, just don’t go overboard and buy memory your motherboard or operating system cannot fully utilize (as of writing this article, 8GB of DDR3 is plenty).
What are you waiting for?
Go open a bunch of other browser tabs and find the games you’ll want to play in the coming months, and start hunting down for some sweet PC hardware. If you’re really, really strapped for cash, I guess you can get yourself a title loan to cover for your rig. Regardless, have fun!
About the Author
Stacey Thompson is a professional writer, marketer, entrepreneur, and a lover of weird little animals. She is based in San Diego, California, and is currently conspiring with her girlfriends in making their own blog about their adventures in life, Word Baristas.
Gaming online in apps isn’t always free – in fact there’s a charge for most things, even when they appear not to cost anything. Get a free game for your phone, for example, and you have to pay for the data usage while the app downloads – or at least factor it in to your allowed monthly usage, for which there is a cost at the end of every billing period. Even when you have a pay as you go phone, the cost of taking data down is a factor.
So genuinely cost free games – like some of the Ben 10 free games in apps provided by Cartoon Network – are ideal for the online gamer. They mean you can play games featuring favourite characters, without having to worry about the cost or the data load.
There are two ways to play Ben 10 free games in Android – or on your computer, in which case the usage is almost certainly completely without cost; or on your phone. If you play on your phone you should bear in mind that data will be streaming in any live play; and there is, as noted, a cost associated with that.
The people who make Ben 10 free games in ipads can help even here, with a couple of options to lighten the load on the wallet. First, they make the games small in total size – so if you download a Ben 10 free game on a usage plan, you aren’t looking at a massive percentage of your permitted data load. Second, they provide the option to do that – to download a game in its entirety – so you can know how much data each app or game is going to eat up.
The online gaming life is also made easier by mobile providers and phones that will let you access existing broadband plans when you are within range and have the security key. Doing this theoretically means you will have no data taken out of your mobile usage plan – though to be completely sure there will be no errors you should switch your mobile to flight mode while you access a home broadband network.
In any case, free downloading of different games is clearly a help to anyone who wants to play them – given that the alternative is paid for downloading, which obviously costs more money than the user really wants to spend. Given the average life span of (for example) Ben 10 free online games this is a fair exchange – the game, after all, keeps the character fresh in the minds of his fans, so it reaps revenue in other ways. Its small overall size makes gameplay repetitive after a while (hence the large number of alternatives) – and the free download enables the programmers to pump out new titles at rapid intervals, keeping the gamer’s appetite satisfied.
Ben 10 free games tend to focus on the characters in the Ben 10 universe, often allowing users to create their own characters form bits of existing ones, and test them on other players. They enhance enjoyment of the show and don’t take up much space.
Olivia is a freelance writer based in North Wales. When not writing professionally, She can usually be found spending time with her partner and niece; if not playing the awesome Ben 10 free games online.