Windows PCs need a new Amiga-style gaming rival – Reader’s Feature

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Do Windows PCs need a serious competitor? (Image: Razer)

One reader argues that a new brand of gaming PCs with their own first-party games is needed to create any real competition for Windows PCs.

There should be a brand of gaming PC/laptop that can compete with Steam for the dominance of Windows/x86-based machines. In the 80’s and early 90’s, Commodore and Atari computers were fairly successful and popular alternatives to Macintosh and PC, mostly popular for playing games. Depending on your region of the world, the MSX, PC-8800, PC-9800, and ZX Spectrum, to name a few, were also popular alternatives to the MS-DOS/x86-based computers that would later establish dominance over personal computing Market.

These days, only Apple’s Macs remain, alongside the more recent addition of Google, throwing their hats in the ring where Chromebooks are an attempt to grab a share of the computing market. But neither of these two brands have machines aimed at gamers. There’s nothing wrong with the current setup of Windows/x86 computers for gaming, but competition is good for the consumer and I think an alternative to this near-monopoly would be a good thing, and here’s why.

It fosters the us-versus-them mentality that encourages a mindset of friendly competition between rival companies, a sense of customer loyalty and a superiority that has been so common in the technology industry over the years. Samsung vs Apple, Apple vs Microsoft, Microsoft vs Sony vs Nintendo, Commodore vs Atari… you know.

To further expand on this point, if you look at the crowd of Apple Mac fanboys and fangirls who feel they are superior to regular Windows users due to the move from x86 to ARM-based Macs in recent years, and I’m sure that Apple, as a company, thinks the switch makes sense given Intel’s struggles in making modern energy-efficient 64-bit CPUs and quality control issues in chip manufacturing.

A similar example of one-upmanship is Sony’s super-fast SSDs for the PlayStation 5, which the Xbox Series X/S and Nintendo Switch don’t have, which is the tech designed to make Rachet & Clank: Rift Apart feel like a real game to the next Generation versus stuff on Xbox One/PlayStation 4, with near-instant load times and better, but not necessarily stunning, graphics.

With that in mind, I think a hypothetical gaming PC brand should take a step away from x86 and Windows (maybe be brave and use ARM or RISC V) to take advantage of the power efficiency of different computer architectures and offer an OS other than Windows , like a Linux distribution, to encourage us-versus-them mentality and to offer things like extra security or a much smaller operating system size.

Also, I think this hypothetical gaming PC brand should make their own exclusive video games similar to what Nintendo does, similar to what Sony mostly does (except for some games they ported to PC and similar to what what microsoft is doing the xbox and windows platforms.

I think this would be a huge advantage over PC companies like HP, Dell (Alienware), Asus and MSI who make x86/Windows based gaming PCs and typically have high end gaming hardware for £600+ and presumably with Selling at a profit Video game consoles typically cost £500 or less and are sold at a loss, recovering money from sales of first-party games and royalties from third-party developers.

I think the combination of a hypothetical PC gaming company producing its own first-party games, plus a possible third-party licensing of a Linux distro as a developer platform, similar to a console, would allow for the gaming PC to be much cheaper than others to be in the market. I think this idea would be a brilliant development in the PC and video game market, encouraging competition and fandom around a brand. If successful, it could bring nostalgia and brilliant games and hardware to gamers years later.

From reader Ronaldo Chambers

The reader feature does not necessarily represent the views of GameCentral or Metro.

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