Ya, price is always a big factor in PC gaming, it does get kind of expensive. It's the ever evolving changes in HW/SW that drive people insane and burns people out. Plus, like you guys said, most people hate all the tweaking and adjustments that have to be made to a PC. And the social factors of gaming on an xbox are much different that the solitary confinement of PC gaming. But a lot of that is changing. Go to a good game center and you will understand what Iâ€™m talking about.
You guys are all pointing out good reasons why PC gaming is the "black-eyed redheaded stepchild", heh. Basically, how itâ€™s disrespected and misunderstood by most â€œadultsâ€.
In some ways, consoles basically copy the ideas of PC games, but usually about 1-3 years later. PC gamers lead the charge in advancing electronic entertainment; they buy the games that developers take huge risks in creating and this process still drives new forms of entertainment for everyone to enjoy. Consoles, generally, do not do this. They are followers, not leaders. Btw, Iâ€™m not complaining about avs, because itâ€™s THE MOST AMAZING PLACE!! I love you guys!
From what Iâ€™ve experienced in the game center industry, normal consumers are always looking for the best possible experience in entertainment (based off of easy of use, amazing games, social experience). If you show them (any age/demographic) what PC gaming is all about, they REALLY get hooked. The addiction factor is much more than any console game.
These people are not hardcore gamers (like myself), but are normal people that are curious about what the fuss is about. Once they see how amazing PC games are, they are VERY happy to switch over from console to PC. We fill up our seats with all types of gamers too, old and young, male or female (mostly males), black or white, poor and rich, jocks or nerds etc etc. They freaking love it! Game centers are still a niche market, but it should continue to develop, just like movie theaters did in the early days *cross fingers*. Arcade industry doesnâ€™t really compare (apple and oranges).
I've see this switch all the time at the game center. We laugh at it actually. When some big xbox players come in with all their buddies, rip on pc gamers and tell everyone how awesome the xbox games are, my PC customers just roll their eyes and laugh at them, because they are used to it and know the truth. Then, after about 1 week, the social pressure and curiosity starts in. These console players start to realize how the content of PC games is WAY above any console game could ever be. They happily switch over and get hooked.
Yes, you guys are right, new consoles will come out, new controllers, new broadband options, but still will lack the flexibility to play PC quality games from a content perspective. Plus, people have been talking about the demise of the PC gaming market (consoles v.s. arcade v.s. PC gaming) since 1982. Itâ€™s the only market thatâ€™s lasted through troubled times. All the others have crashed at one point or another.
From my perspective, a game center takes the guess work out of tweaking the stupid computers and upgrading them all the time. Itâ€™s really great to get people into PC gaming when might have been intimidating. All our new customers do is prepay their time, jump on a Desert Combat server, and within 10 minutes, they are fly an A10, knocking out 20 tanks with the vulcan cannon, parachuting out into an abrams tank and mowing down a bunch of Iraqis. Once new customers experience sometime like that, they are in complete shock from what they just seen themselves do. Hooked!
It will be interesting to see what happens in the future, but I doubt PC gaming will be overthrown by consoles when it comes to quality of gaming. Never has, never will.