The study found that 23% of gamers still rely on PC-based games as a primary means of gaming, feeling that PCs provide superior experiences compared with console-based games such as Nintendo Wii, Microsoft 360 Xbox and Sony PlayStation.
Key findings suggest that PCs continue to give gamers a superior method to play certain types of games compared with consoles. For example, access to a keyboard and mouse allows players to communicate better in many multiplayer games, especially MMOs and strategy games.
Interpret's study also found that the once PC-dominated first-person shooter genre is now experiencing equal or greater success compared to consoles. The research shows this trend may hint at the future of how gamers will use each platform and how developers can best tailor products to promote the differences.
"Bleeding-edge" technology, both hardware and software, provides an advantage for the PC. The "open platform" has historically proven to move development along more quickly. Ironically, the study suggests that people who prefer consoles are less likely to sample proof-of-concept games or unfinished-but-promising modifications.
Michael Cai, VP of video games at Interpret, says that although consoles continue to introduce more multiplayer social features, the PC is still stronger in social gaming when the PC remains connected to the Internet. "PC game sales haven't done well in stores, so retailers are cutting shelf space and giving it to consoles, but in the meantime there has been an online revolution for downloadable PC games," he says.
Lagging PC game sales in retail stores have contributed to the decline of PC games, but if you combine all the different business models, games on the PC remain a significant revenue stream, Cai says.