Gamergasm – Controller or Keyboard?

Gamergasm - Controller or Keyboard?

This weeks Gamergasm I am taking a break from writing my series on tropes (for multiple reasons) and teaming up with DevilSugar to look at our respective gaming interests and what they mean to us.

Devil and I have often talked about the differences between “console gamers” and “PC gamers,” but I’ve come to learn a lot about the similarities in the past months and that’s (hopefully) what this article will focus on. I’ll let Devil start us off because he is bouncing around the NSFW Gamer offices ready to go. We may come to it in different ways but, at the end of the day, we come here to geek over the same things. We love them. Its WHY we are here. – Lexxx


DevilSugar – The Console That Got Away

Ever since I got my Super Nintendo Entertainment System for Christmas back in the nineties, I’ve defined myself as a gamer. When friends came over, I had a go-to bridge for social interaction, which was very useful for the shy, quiet Little Devil I was. Growing up, it was definitely where I spent a better majority of my time. Mortal Kombat, Super Mario World, Earthworm Jim, Kirby Super Star– these are my childhood icons, the experiences that made me love gaming as a lifelong hobby and indeed what eventually set me on my career path toward game journalism. But Nintendo’s sophomore effort was never my only tool for gaming.

NSFW Gamer

Like many kids with divorced parents, the divided income meant the Genesis, N64 and original PlayStation all passed me by, however, a home computer became a growing necessity, leading to my discovery beyond Nintendo’s high-quality yet exclusively family friendly content. My first experience with the FPS genre was on an old Windows 3.1 system, with the amazing Wolfenstein 3-D episode one pre installed. Fond memories remain of old DOS games, from the original, side-scrolling Duke Nukem and Spymaster by Apogee software to the PC classic that wanted part of Street Fighter’s pie, Body Blows, and the unforgiving ninja adventure Budo. Enter Windows 95, and the game that set me on my obsessive love for Western RPG’s: Betrayal in Antara. Sierra software’s high note featured richly voiced characters, a story spanning four discs, and beautifully rendered sprite graphics that put the early, blocky models of so many console titles to shame.

Another Christmas morning many years later, I find a PlayStation 2 waiting for me under the tree, and with it, the original Devil May Cry. This was the point where I started to lean away from the trappings of Diablo and found myself in love with my console roots again. Naturally more games followed, and I finally felt like I was catching up to the modern curve. Mortal Kombat: Armageddon and Soul Calibur III began my craving for total character customization. My love for action-heavy titles was carried forward in Red Faction, the Devil May Cry series, and of course God of War, and some of the best stories I’ve ever experienced have been from Crystal Dynamic’s Legacy of Kain.

Now here we are two generations later, and I mostly find myself immediately sitting down to my PS4 when I come home. I’ve tried some newer games on PC, but the keyboard-and-mouse approach have never felt as natural to me as both hands on a controller. However, as I gradually move into the modding scene, I understand the open-ended appeal and how one single-player game could last a gamer the entire decade. My hat’s off to each and every person creating, sharing it, and patching free content. Even if it’s just a HUD change, being able to take the gaming hobby to a whole new meta-level truly blows my mind.

Now one more thing before handing this over to Lexxx, and it may be an issue worth a second look: I don’t understand where the idea that games have to be “dumbed down” for console players came from. Sure, there’s the image of a twelve-year-old out of Singapore screaming racial obscenities associated with any online shooter, but is there really an at-large belief that those of the console persuasion really aren’t as intelligent as those behind a monitor? I understand some sequel ports have been inferior before, but if anything that’s at the fault of the developers. Now that I’ve agitated the beast, I’ll let Lexxx try to soothe him back to sleep.

– Brad Cowan aka “Devilsugar” ~ Bio


NSFW Gamer

Lexxx – PC Envy

I have always been into PC gaming because I could only ever afford one thing at a time and a computer seemed the better investment. I too came from a house where money was an issue and my parents were always adamant that things like food, education, and bills come BEFORE things like video games and comics. At the time, this is not how I would have done things. All my friends were getting consoles and rubbing my face in them. I was given an original Nintendo and a SNES, then my parents started shifting toward buying better computers. We had three kids in the house, all within two years of each other. We did have internet and multiple working computers. Looking back on it I was REALLY lucky. My parents had one rule though…I was on my own pretty much for games.

I’m not gonna lie, in high school I loved A LOT of games, but then something utterly life changing happened to me- someone bought me Everquest. That was when I went from being “someone who played games” to being “a gamer.” I only played intensely for about six months and I didn’t go on another MMORPG bender until my boyfriend at the time decided it would be AMAZING to play World of Warcraft with his girlfriend – but that is a whole other story (And was ultimately the end of our relationship).

Playing Everquest was the first time I ever felt that connection – that magic with another gamer I didn’t know in real life. That was when the switch was flipped from “Girl who loves to play video games” to “will play until school the next morning with no sleep, Gamer Girl.” It was also before a lot of girls were up front with their gaming so…I had some unique challenges dating.

NSFW Gamer

That was where I discovered that what I loved about gaming was SHARING it with other people. That moment when you master the encounter. Healing a party through content you wiped on for hours. Wiping on content for hours and having the “Fox Hole” moment.

At the time, Consoles were completely incapable of offering me that kind of interaction, but, a computer, as long as you had the internet, it was like a passport to another universe. I became, in many ways, during those encounters – the woman that I am today. I learned…I made genuine friends and I fell in love more than once, and I found the magic within myself that I needed to make it through some REALLY tough times. To me – that is what being a gamer is. Magic. Transformation. Watching your dreams come alive and PARTICIPATING in them.

What is if for you? How do you do it? What kind of magic will you make today?

– Lexxx ~ Bio

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14 Responses to “Gamergasm – Controller or Keyboard?”

  1. glcorp says:

    Good job you two, as for me I am a bi gamer, console or pc I don’t care I just want to play good games.

  2. Lexxx says:

    Awww…GL, First comment AND you commented somewhere in the middle. Gamers like you are rare, and it’s one of the reasons I came to hate console gamers a little less…Honestly. I should hug you for it.

  3. MusiAH says:

    Love this article! I started console and only recently drifted to the computer hemisphere with steam. Great thing to see the age old debate from two bi-gamers

  4. Lexxx says:

    Well, this was less of a debate and more of a complete “Lets all get along” love fest..because frankly I’m tired of the debate…But yes, I definitely wrote about it 🙂

  5. Scond says:

    Well, ive been on both sides of he table, I started with my gameboy and pokemon yellow, worked my way to xbox 360, and eventally down the road to a really poor quality pc. But i decide a long time ago, its not the games themselves that make either gameing fun, its the People we play with, the romance we sometimes find, the friends we make along the way. Thats why i am proudly a gamer on the fence, Put a mouse in my hands, or a game pad, and i will rock the house with my friends!

  6. Korgan says:

    i don’t get the whole gamepad vs mouse and keyboard debate. i mean, there shouldn’t even be a debate in the first place, for a couple reasons. firstly, on the pc side of things, you have the option to play with either depending on your preference. secondly, which is actually better completely depends on the type of game you are playing. it’s an undeniable fact that a mouse is better for aiming quickly and accurately than a game pad is, just based on the fundamental nature of how you interact with the device. in any game where aiming and shooting is the main focus of the gameplay (fps, etc.), a mouse and keyboard is going to be the hands-down definitive way to play. what a lot of people don’t think about, however, is the fact that a keyboard is very limited as a control interface for movement compared to a gamepad. on a keyboard, you are limited to eight digital directions. you are always traveling in one of eight directions at a set speed, where as an analog stick on a gamepad gives you 360 degree rotational control with varying degrees of acceleration. in short, when playing a game where the focus is on freedom of movement, as opposed to pointing and aiming, a gamepad is going to be the hands-down best way to play. a good example of a game like that would be DMC, or something similar to it. for some games, it’s simply not cut and dry which one is better. best example i can think of there is tomb raider. i chose to play it with a mouse and keyboard, and as a result, i had a bit more trouble with the sections of the game that required quick traversal. on the other hand, my headshot kill count with the bow and arrow was astronomical, and i could pick off grenades in mid air like it was nothing. i decided what was most important to my play style and picked the control interface that suited it best. so… i guess my whole point is that it shouldn’t be about which is better overall, but rather which is better for the particular game you’re playing. there’s no reason to have complete favoritism for one or the other.

  7. Lexxx says:

    Aww Scond…You get 3 points for that very cute ryhme.

  8. Scond says:

    Yay points!

  9. JimmyBones says:

    I see it this way.
    Pros and Cons for most things.

    PC: Pro: If you have the right rig. There is endless possibility.
    “Plus Modding!”

    Con: You have to buy everything to make it run. “Can get Costly”

    Console: Pro: Ready to go out of the box.

    Con: Always having to get more for it.
    New Controllers
    A HDD
    WiFi Connecters

    For me Consoles have just become to costly. $500 for the unit. $120 for the HDD. $40 for the WiFi connecters. $30 for each controller. That adds up fast.

    If you drop almost all that “maybe a little more, maybe a little less”. You can have a PC that will do donuts around a Console.

    As for Controller vs Keyboard.

    Simple. If it is a FPS. Give me a Keyboard and a Mouse.
    If it is a Hack and Slash or Fighter. Give me a controller.

  10. DevilSugar says:

    Hey everybody, sorry that life kept me away for a bit, thanks for all your responses!

    I’ve recently started getting back into Skyrim, and speaking as someone who played it to death on console, I’ve started an all-new experience thanks to the power of mods. It doesn’t look quite as good on my laptop (I can’t even run the high-res texture pack without serious skips), but the amazing amount of free user-generated DLC puts concerns about how it looks to bed. I’m glad to see our community doesn’t have any snooty elitists unlike some denizens of the internet *COUGH* IGN *COUGH COUGH* and that everybody agrees- gaming is great, no matter where you do it.

  11. Lexxx says:

    @Korgan – This was the most well thought out response I have seen in maybe forever. The argument seems moot to me because almost everyone I know plays both. It depends on the game.

    @JimmyBones – I loved your detailed breakdown. I always love your breakdowns.

    @DevilSugar – We would have eaten the snooty people.

  12. JimmyBones says:

    ^__^ Thank you

  13. DevilSugar says:

    @Lexxx- We usually do, by ignoring those- wait, was there someone I was commenting about? 😉

  14. Lord Redek says:

    One of the first gaming experiences I have was watching my older sister playing a Zelda game, so I was hooked even before I could hold a controller properly. Anyways, I always prefered console to PC, that’s not to say console is better than PC. PC is in many ways superior to console, though playing on console can be cheaper and simpler. What I don’t like is when we, gamers, argue over who’s way of playing games is better. It’s in human nature to want to be better than each other, but we don’t have to be like that. Unlike any human before gaming we have a world where we can interact with each other as equals and have fun with no real concern as to what happens. But instead of using that ability to the maximum many waste time going on about how great they are and how stupid others are for not agreeing. I’m going to go play with some of my friends now.