Is a Gaming Laptop Right for Me? Laptop vs Console Debate! - GUNNAR

Is a Gaming Laptop Right for Me? Laptop vs Console Debate!

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The epic debate of Console vs PC is a tale as endless as time. At GUNNAR, we have drafted a checklist to assist you in making a decision. If you’re in the market to jump in, swap, or upgrade the way you game, you came to the right place! Just like finding the right tool for the job, or the right weapon in your arsenal, use our guide to help decide if a Laptop or Console is the right choice for you.

1.) Portability

Whether you’re an at-home base builder or avid outdoor adventurer, portability is a prime factor in how, when, and where you’re in your element. This is the number one factor to consider.

Console:

  • Buying a console means getting a bundle
    Purchasing a console gives you a controller, gaming system, and power brick in most cases. Sure, you might have to bring an extra HDMI cable and need a monitor or TV, but bringing this stuff over to a buddy’s house or staying at a hotel means a TV is most likely available. No need to get a mouse or keyboard, once your console is set up, you’re good to go.
  • Gaming Subscriptions can include access to Cloud Gaming
    Cloud gaming is the absolute ultimate in portability and access to new games. While there are still limitations to the technology, like high data usage and recommendation for wifi, some gaming subscriptions include this feature as a premium. No downloads, no waiting, no problem! Where you leave off, you can pick right back up. While cloud gaming is certainly available on PC as well, you can get the most mileage out of it by having an accompanying console.

Gaming Laptop:

  • Buying a Gaming Laptop is (technically) a Full Package
    Getting a Gaming Laptop means you really can game wherever you want. While we don’t recommend using just the trackpad, if you’re a pad player, you can have at it.
  • King of Customization
    Mice and Keyboard are the way to go here and no matter what your need or preference, you can almost always find (or even build) what you need or want. Mechanical keyboards and lightweight mice are all the rage nowadays, there’s sure to be one that fits your grip or typing preference, perfectly.

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2.) Gaming Library

You can’t buy a gaming laptop or console without getting any games. This is the core of value and another top reason to choose what you want to buy.

Console:

  • Physical Disks
    That’s right! Physical. Disks. Now you might be sitting there wondering “why is this a pro?” Physical gaming is definitely not a dying medium. Being able to sell or donate games when you’re done with them is a great way to E-Cycle. In the era of all digital, it’s nice to have the option. Not to mention, there’s definitely an art to displaying cases on a shelf that also makes for great decoration.
  • Expansive Gaming Library and Exclusivity
    Exclusivity is a huge reason I’m committed to some brands. Some absolute gems of games are straight up locked to the console. While there are always more games to play, it is worth it to remember where your favorite franchises are.

Gaming Laptop:

  • Access to Indie Gaming
    Indie gaming has absolutely taken off! We’re seeing some smaller titles made by handfuls of people rise up to take on some of the titans of gaming studios. Just as physical disks are almost exclusive to consoles, a majority of Indie games won’t ever see the light of day on consoles. If you’re a fan of discovering something fresh and new, this is where you want to be.
  • Digital Storefronts and Sales
    Digital Storefronts offer some of the best, competitive pricing in the industry for games. Many are sometimes offered for free too. I know I login weekly to see what the next big free release is. If you can buy it, there’s always a chance you can shave a few bucks here and there. Save up for your next big buy too.

 

3.) Hardware

Here we are, at the very last subject of our guide. As games become increasingly more visually enhanced, they also become more demanding on existing hardware. If you’re someone who likes to immerse yourself with the best graphics and visual quality available, this is a big factor to consider. The higher resolution of your screen, the more demanding it will be. But of course, everything comes at a price, so let’s take a look at what our options provide.

Console:

  • One, then Done
    Consoles pretty much come as they are. Barring digital/physical variations, a few differences in hardware, and harddrive expansions, there is pretty much no need (or ability) to upgrade the components that come in a console. Great for a single “fire and forget” type of investment or people disinterested by needing to upgrade, as games are always going to work on the console.
  • Consistent Support, but Options Available
    As stated above, consoles get a lot of first party and some third party support for peripherals and games. So you will never be left with a truly unplayable game due to lack of hardware! In recent years though, we’re also seeing the release of premium higher end consoles that accompany the initial release, with upgraded internals that boost performance. If you want to enjoy your game with higher frames per second or graphical quality, while not a requirement, the option to upgrade is there.

Gaming Laptop:

  • Piece-by-Piece Upgrades, Expensive Legos!
    Building a PC is certainly an investment, and (especially these days) it doesn’t come cheap. However, depending on what model you buy, there can be peace of mind that you can always make your computer meet the requirements and demands of current-gen or even next-gen games. In any case, just like owning a car, proper maintenance, upgrade, and care of your computer goes a long way toward ensuring that your computer doesn’t overheat and maintains the proper power draw.
  • Consistent Support, and Options Available
    Computers are the starting point for any game being made, so it’s always likely that games that may struggle on console are perfectly fine on the PC. With PC, Cloud gaming, Streaming and VR support are all both a given and inherent to the platform. No matter what way you play, you’ll find it all here.
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Photo Credit: Terry Albea

Now that you’re better prepared to evaluate whether you’ll be best served by a Laptop or Console, it’s also important to evaluate any personal needs or preferences to decide which option will work best for you. Check out the link to our Gaming Setup blog post for some additional ideas and inspiration! Ultimately, whatever your budget, there’s no right or wrong way to enjoy the hobby. Laptop or Console (or both), just remember that your GUNNAR glasses are multi-platform and compatible either way. Thanks for sticking around, if you’d like to keep up with us or even join us for game nights, feel free to join our Discord server!

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