There’s always been a clear distinction between console and PC gaming. Just about everything about the platforms made them complete different experiences and each met different needs. The lines between the two platforms are becoming heavily blurred as consoles are using PC tech and the PC’s UI (Windows 8) is adapting to the console look. Alienware General Manager, Frank Azor has told PCGamesN that consoles becoming more like PCs, means that PC is the platform of choice.
“If you look at what Sony and Microsoft are doing, they’re taking PCs and putting them into the living room. It’s an AMD CPU, it’s an AMD graphics card, it’s a standard desktop hard drive. It’s unbelievable,” said Azor. “That tells you that the PC is the gaming platform of choice out there, there is nothing out there that’s better”.
I can’t help but agree with him, a PC is a PC, no matter the shell it’s popped in. (This doesn’t mean I hate consoles, I love them, don’t make assumptions.) I believe that years from now, PC and console will blend into a new “home entertainment platform”, while laptops and tablets will remain for office use and the likes.
The biggest difference between PC and next-gen consoles will remain the peripherals used to play games. Which hasn’t been an issue for a long time since console controllers can be hooked up to PCs anyway. When you get down to the gist of it, both platforms have the ability to do what the other does in one way or another. That being said, PC maintains its unique ability to be built up out of different components, custom hardware if you will. This is something I don’t suspect consoles will ever adapt to.
Azor continued to justify his statements saying:
“You’re installing games now instead of running them off the disc, because that’s the right thing to do; you’re downloading games digitally, which we’ve been doing on PC for years; they’re integrating certain TV aspects and stuff, well, ten years ago we started experimenting with media centre. I mean we can tell you how to do that on Alienware with media centre PCs during that whole time. It’s a little bit different now because the technology has matured considerably, but a lot of the innovations and things that are proven on the PC are making their ways onto consoles and the consoles are looking more and more like PCs every day.”
As machines, the PC is dominating. It’s no longer better to design machines built specifically to play games because consoles don’t simply play games anymore.”
I don’t think that Microsoft or Sony are intentionally copying the PC platform, it’s just a matter of “How can we improve our console?”. Consoles were bound to evolve from just playing games to doing so much more, and hell, why not? One might even argue that the Alienware X51 is copying consoles by becoming a smaller compact PC. I mean it does kind of look like an Xbox 360, if you really think about it.