Help Lifehacker Answer Questions About Video Games

Ask Lifehacker is a cool little segment our sister site frequently runs. It usually revolves around dull questions about spreadsheets or bloody Chrome extensions or something, but this week someone asked about video games. As a lifelong gamer (and ex-game journalist) Lifehacker writer Chris Jager did a stellar job of answering the question, but he asked me to ask you for your help.

I'll simplify the question: one man used to be a 'gamer', he lost interest but wants to get back into things. What should he do? Which console should he buy? Should he wait for next gen?

Head over to Lifehacker to get the full skinny and see if you agree with Lifehacker's prognosis!

Ask LH: How Can I Train Myself For The Next Generation Of Consoles? [Lifehacker]


    A good read. While im more inclined to get people to play PC this guy definitely sounds like hes more of a console gamer and should stick to it especially if just out of uni and doesn't have alot of money to throw around. I would suggest he just waits for the next gen consoles is the best option to keep costs down as most PS3 games will probably be on cloud for download for similar cost to buying but the added cost of a PS3 for only a couple of months before upgrading can be wasteful.

    Depending on how soon the guy wants to jump back into gaming. If jumping in straight away best option would be to grab a PS3 as it has a more interesting and varied library of games compared to Xbox360. Then decide on which new console once you see what exclusive games are coming out on each console.

      Of course, if we're being completely pragmatic about cost, if he buys a decent PC he needed really spend... anything, afterward. Depending on how low he's willing to sink.

      Also, struggling to think of PS3 exclusive titles which are worthy. The stand-outs in my mind are: God of War series, Heavy Rain, Infamous series, Journey, Uncharted series, The Last of Us, Valkyria Chronicles, the as-yet-unreleased Beyond: Two Souls, and maybe Dust 514 (if you care about that sort of thing and can't wait for them to come to their fucking senses and put it on PC).

      There are other famous ones, like Heavenly Sword, Haze, Little Big Planet, Motorstorm, Killzone, the earlier Metal Gear Solids, Lair, etc... but I wouldn't call them system-sellers.

      Of course going PS3 only you're sacrificing: Halo series, Gears of War, Crackdown series, and nothing else very good, which makes the choice a lot clearer, unless you absolutely HAVE to get Gears or Halo. (Which, y'know. I do, for teh hal0ez. But hey, two consoles. Whee.)

    1. Get a PC.
    2. Get Steam.
    3. Wait for the Steam sales.
    4. Buy all the great games he's missed out on from the last few years.
    5. ???
    6. Profit

      7. Receive Credit Card Bill.
      8. Notice its a lot lower than you thought.
      9. Celebratory purchase ensues.

        Also, you can use paypal with Steam, linking it to a bank account. Great for folks who are tempted to spend too much and don't want to spend money they don't have. :)

        10. Only play 10% of the games you buy.

          Yea I never really understood this about Steam. As a console gamer I hardly even play the few games I do buy. Why would I want to buy a million games I'll never get around to firing up?



            You think it's going to be much better playing all these things than you actually ever experience. :)

      1. Idle a few dummy accounts in TF2 etc
      2. Sell off trading cards
      3. Wait for steam sales
      4. Dont pay any of your own money
      5. ???
      6. Maximum profit is a great place for someone who may have enjoyed games in the past, might get a big bite from the old nostalgia bug, I know I did on my first visit there.

    Someone wants advice about video games, and they're asking us? *cracks knuckles* We got this.

    'Everything is shit.'

    There ya go!
    (Edit: Oh, forgot to add: '...and you should get mad about it.')

    Last edited 09/07/13 6:28 pm

    1. Install Steam.
    2. Buy games on Steam sale.
    3. Realise that the games you bought require PC upgrades.
    4. Get stuck in that endless PC upgrading cycle.
    5. Buy a PS3 instead.
    6. JOURNEY!

    Get a handheld, all the best games are on handheld!


      Here's how it breaks down: console>PC>getting hit in the balls with a baseball bat>handhelds ;)

        You keep telling yourself that, us Handheld Gods know our superiority.

    There is seriously no one answer I can give, I would sit down with the person, find out what they like and then point them in the appropriate direction.

    There are just too many different types of games and who's to say if the person even wants to try similar things or something new?

    I recently went to Cash Converters and got a second hand 160gb ps3 for under $200. Then went into EB and got them to price match Last of Us, then came home and got the 90 days of + for $20 (already downloaded Catherine, BF3, Uncharted 3, The Cave and couple of others). So for under $300 I have a fair amount of content.

    The answer to this one takes some research. What kind of games did they used to enjoy? Are they looking for a nostalgic kick? Do they want to see some of the awesome things they have missed in the last few years, or are they waiting to see how next-gen blows our minds when developers start taking true advantage of the hardware?

    Personally, I wouldn't recommend waiting for next-gen. With the announcement of the new consoles, the prices for the PS4 and 360 will tumble. They also have huge libraries to choose from with great games just over a year old available dirt cheap.

    The newer consoles will cost more, have fewer games and are bound to have some teething issues. Unless they MUST have all the graphics. If you stick with testing the water in current gen hardware, and it turns out gaming isn't for them, then they at least have a less expensive paperweight.

    I doubt that would happen though. Last year was brilliant for gaming in my opinion. There's thrills to had no matter the genre you prefer. And that's just one year. The current gen has a built up a lot of joy for anyone willing to take a look.

    Last edited 09/07/13 7:43 pm

    Haven't upgraded my PC in over 3 years now, and it still runs games like BF3 on the highest possible settings. To be fair, I spent roughly $4000 AUD building the system. If you want to go down the path of the PC, build it your self. Whilst you can buy very powerful PC's that seemingly come off a production line, you will usually be paying +/- $1000 extra because it was all done for you.

    In terms of the difficulty levels of a self-assembled PC? I've seen LEGO Technic sets that are about the same difficulty. Most PSU's come with all of the cables you need for the rest of your components (i.e. VGA card and MOBO). If a plug doesn't fit somewhere it's because it's the wrong connector/socket. It's so easy because PC's are made to be DIY projects by the manufacturers.

    When I pulled my PS3 apart (Important! It was out of warranty) to apply new thermal paste to its chip sets, it was a great deal more difficult to reassemble, Simply because it is a console, they are not made to open up/customize/self diagnose/repair yourself.

    If you want to spend the extra $$$, simple, get a PC. That way you won't have to worry about it being made redundant by 'a next-gen' system. And believe me, spend more the first time, that way you will have a nice long go at playing top of line games on their respective maximum settings.

    Having a console does have it's advantages though....

    It is so much easier for developers to make games look incredible on consoles. Why? Easy answer. A console is essentially a PC (current gen consoles would be considered very low end by now). The parts inside are just modified so you can't just get a better VGA card etc. But because each one has more or less identical hardware and OS software, there will almost never be any compatibility issues (exception: PS3's Skyrim). Where as with a conventional PC the CPU, MOBO, VGA, RAM, HDD/SDD, & PSU combinations you can have are almost limitless. So you may find a problem in your build that no one else has ever encountered, simply because no one else has ever used that exact combination of hardware. Don't worry, It's not too common, and the vendor you're buying parts from should be more than happy to check the overall compatibility for you, slimming those chances even more.

    If you want to go and buy a PC, I personally recommend:

    For easy pick-up-and-play, without worrying about anything but the enjoyment of playing, get a PS3/X Box 360 to help you decide whether or not to get a PS4/X Box One.

    Hope this helps......

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