Overwatch & advice on gaming reentry
May 24, 2016 4:21 PM   Subscribe

Been out of console or PC gaming for years, but the pending release of Overwatch has me excited about getting back in! What platform do I want?

I haven't gamed at at all seriously for years, but I did go through a phase of Doom/Quake deathmatch addiction back in the day; the last fling I had with multiplayer shooters was with Urban Terror about 7 years ago. I missed out on the TF2 craze, but the pending release of Overwatch has got me kind of excited to dip my toes back into the genre and maybe gaming in general ("In general" meaning maybe one single player FPS or open world/RPG style games per year -- I owned an XBox360 for about 6 years and averaged about that)

I'm an all Mac/iOS household with no gaming console at this point. Normally I figure getting a PS4 would be the slam dunk answer, but the big issue here is that I never got the hang of playing shooters with a controller. I remember trying to play multiplayer Halo on the original XBox and being crazy frustrated over not being about to use a mouse & keyboard. I can handle using a controller for single player campaign mode with lots of checkpoints and a cool story, but not PvP..

So I'm looking for advice in general on what gaming platform might work for me. It's hard to argue with a console for ~$400; if the answer is a PC, I would like to spend as close to that as reasonably possible (no monitor/speakers needed).

1) Is PS4 support for keyboard/mouse any good? I hear it's possible, but what is the current state of affairs, is it basically as responsive as on a PC, and is support on a per-game basis? Any word on whether Overwatch will support it?

2) What can I expect out longevity-wise out of a so-called "budget" PC gaming rig? Something like this? Pointers to other resources welcome.

(I gather Overwatch will be silo'd by platform, so PC folks will only play other PC folks etc, so I guess no MeFi Fight club for me if I go PS4..)
posted by kanuck to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
One thing to consider is that spending a little more on building a PC will pay off later with savings on Steam sales. If you can wait for a summer or winter sale, you can often get recent releases at discounts while their console versions stay at MSRP.

You might browse https://www.reddit.com/r/buildapc to get an idea of what's possible for various prices.
posted by Fleebnork at 5:02 PM on May 24, 2016 [1 favorite]

This is an extraordinarily bad time to build a pc. Nvidia is just releasing their Pascal cards, but at stupid markups, and AMD is about to announce their Polaris cards. Both look to be absolute leaps over the current GPUs, and there's about to be a glut of used GPUs. Likewise, AMD is about to move everything over to a new AM4 platform, so upgrading from an AMD chip (which lots of budget builds will use) will require a motherboard+CPU. They're also about to announce a new line of CPUs that they assert will be competitive with Intel on performance, but it looks like they're starting with big 8-core/16-thread chips.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 5:05 PM on May 24, 2016

. Nvidia is just releasing their Pascal cards, but at stupid markups,

I mean, the 1080 is going to have a MSRP of $599 and the 1070 is going to be $379. I don't think you could reasonably call that a stupid markup. Both of those cards are going to be absolute beasts.
posted by kbanas at 6:01 PM on May 24, 2016 [1 favorite]

Overwatch is an MP game. MP shooter communities on PC, imho, are a lot more difficult to navigate/enjoy than console.

You might go to a pc gaming cafe and check it out and see how you feel. In my Quake days, I pined to swim with the elites and I practiced and put up with all kinds of frustration and humiliation to earn my stripes. Now I'm more interested in kicking back amd enjoying myself at my current skill level, with a little challenge to keep me pushing. Console is better for that, I'd say. Also my hand eye coordination ain't what it used to be, making wasd controls tougher than they were in the bad old days. :)
posted by pazazygeek at 6:19 PM on May 24, 2016

I played on both the PC and the PS4 during the beta, and I'd definitely recommend the PC if you get frustrated with console controls. The different heroes have different abilities and movement options you have to learn, and trying to move, shoot, and use abilities at the same time was more frustrating for me on a controller than on mouse / keyboard.
posted by panic at 6:37 PM on May 24, 2016 [1 favorite]

I mean, the 1080 is going to have a MSRP of $599 and the 1070 is going to be $379. I don't think you could reasonably call that a stupid markup.

The Nvidia reference cards, which I assume are all you'll be able to get until Nvidia feels they've milked all the really early adopters, are $100 more than that.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:55 PM on May 24, 2016 [1 favorite]

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