Full essay here. This is the shortened version, I encourage everyone to read on the google doc as that’s an easier experience, and there is a key ‘Gameplay overview’ section which gives context for both my perspective of how the game is played, and explores a hypothetical ‘Expected kills/deaths’ statistic.
Expensive, time-consuming, frustrating — this was my experience. It took 51 days for my PC to arrive, three weeks longer than expected. Despite parts of this thread being pre-written, I didn’t work on it for long periods. First because the game is so good on PC, and so much fun that I instead spent time hitting #1 lifetime in TDM, and then later on because I quit the game.
But — finally, what are the pros and cons of PC, and how does it affect your in-game interactions?
I was directly told many things, and saw many more things being said — all of them turned out to be either wild exaggerations, fairytales or outright lies.
As a clicker I’m both morally and contractually obligated to list my specs. I have a Ryzen 7 5800X & Radeon 6700XT — I went for these purely because people told me that if I go with AMD I won’t get the micro-stutter glitch, so naturally, I get the micro-stutter glitch. It’s not nearly as big of an issue as people claim — and it goes away.
Regarding KB&M; all I have to say is that I consider it cheating, and I do not consider it a PC problem although someone being on PC increases the chances they use KB&M.
Also, I play on a BenQ XL2546K — what I believe to be the best 240hz monitor. Had I known then what I know now, I probably would have went for the best 280hz monitor instead.
I play in 1080p on the lowest possible settings, there are two good reasons for this — first of which is that I average around 300+ fps and higher fps — even above that which your monitor can display — is an advantage. The second reason is that I prefer the way the game looks on low, it looks more like a “game” — I played for years on a TubeTV because of the advantage it provided, and I became accustomed to and very fond of how it looks. You couldn’t pay me to play in 1440p ultra even if I were getting the same 300+ frames as I’m getting now.
This brings me to my first point; a lot of people claim they’re not getting more frames than the Series X/S, I’m now fairly convinced that a large portion of those people are lying. If someone has their settings on low, if they’re playing in 720p/900p and they’re still not hitting above 120 and they can show this, then fine. Otherwise, I’m convinced that I and a lot of other console players are being lied to.
It is important to note, some maps have worse performance than others. There’s no map where I don’t average 240+ but some maps; Ephyra, Ritual, Pahanu will see me occassionly dip below 240 and average under 300. On the flipside, some maps average way more, such as Clocktower, Foundation, Checkout, Reclaimed, Harbor — some of the best maps in the game also average the highest fps.
#What is like to fight PC players?
Well — it’s not a lot of fun.
[Note:3 Everything I’m saying here applies to both playing on the original Xbox One, and also the Series X. Playing on the Series X is a massive improvement and it dulls some of this, but it’s still incredibly noticeable when you’re playing a PC player.]
I’m writing this section before I even get my PC, primarily so I don’t have to do it later but also because pretty soon I’ll be on PC and I might forget what it’s like.
The most immediately noticeable thing about fighting PC players is that you actually have to outplay and outshoot them most of the time — by that I mean that you aren’t really getting anything “free” against them.
What I’m describing here are situations where you’re fighting not entirely 50:50s, but more like 40:60s, you’re not really expected to get these kills consistently provided you’re playing a similarly skilled opponent, but you are expected to get them sometimes. Think of situations where you’re pushing someone holding a right hand and LTing you, or situations where you have to kind of bait out a shot and play for an animation shot. It’s very difficult to just straight up run at a PC player and brainlessly kill them unless they’re considerably worse than you, or they just miss their shots.
A particularly noticeable interaction is fighting a PC player over cover. On the Xbox One this is basically just asking to die — it’s so difficult that I remember a point where I gave up trying to do it completely. Importantly, this massive imbalance was greatly rectified on the Series X — honestly one of the most noticeable differences you get from playing against PC players on the Xbox One compared to the Series X is how much easier and more balanced fights over cover are.
It’s impossible to stress this enough — it’s almost identical to playing against host players in Gow1/2/3/J. In those games you were not going to slide into a host player and kill them with any semblance of consistency. You weren’t going to just strafe or walk at their right hands, hold A into them hoping for an easy kill — none of that. If you were going to kill a host player — you had to actually outplay them and outshoot them. It’s easier to aim on host, the game is smoother, your shots come out faster, and most crucially the players on your screen are actually where you see them.
Playing against low-level players exposed me to the PC advantage more than playing against high-tier players. If you’re playing against a good player who’s also on PC they’re doing broadly the same things that a good console player does, the things are just working better and with more consistency. There’s always this plausible deniability like — “well it does make sense, they were in the better position and they hit the shot.” In interactions with lower-skilled players, it was always amazing to much just how much harder they were to deal with than even your average decent console player. You’re almost forced to outplay them to get consistent kills
For me, it was never a good player on PC that annoyed me — it was bad ones.
The most important aspect of what it “feels” like when you’re playing a PC player is not only can you really not get anything “free” against them — again, you’re not going to slide into a PC players right hand, have them get 99% in 1 and chunk them with any semblance of consistency — but on the other side of that it feels like they can do it to you more consistently. It “feels” like their animation shots are faster, Back-As, Up-As, Wraps, and most noticeably for me their roadie runs. It genuinely “feels” and looks to me like PC players get into and come out of roadie runs faster than everyone else. It also looks like people on PC wallbounce differently — the way they latch onto walls, the speed and consistency of the cancels — I see this with basically every PC player I spectate, and I’ve noticed it watching PC players recorded gameplay. The best way I can describe it is that it almost looks like they’re using single-stick, except they’re not using single-stick.
But, crucially, we’re playing the same video game — at least I think we are, so what do I think could be causing this?
[Note:9 Lancer/Pistol are a lot stronger on the Series X/S, and playing against people on PC they’re even stronger. And power weapons are all way too easy to use on the Series X/S already, playing against people on PC the power weapons all feel even more ridiculous. When I say stronger I obviously don’t mean that 1 pc lancer bullet does more damage then 1 console lancer bullet, in case you were confused.]
My theory — and this is prior to having a PC — I believe that the primary PC advantage is due to PC players seeing a more accurate representation of where players are at any given moment.
People aren’t actually where they appear to be on your screen — they’re ahead. This is true in GoW, it’s always been true in GoW and it’s probably true in other games as well, for example I know it’s true at least in the older CoDs from BO2 and back.
This is why people kill you on your screen out of roadie runs while they’re still running despite the shot delay on roadie runs, this is why you get wrap shotted and never see the person on your screen turn the corner, this is why you get back-a’d/up-a’d before the person even hits the walls. Everyone is ahead of where you see them.
My belief is that PC players are seeing — perhaps it’s only slightly — but I believe that PC players are seeing a more accurate representation of where people really are. That’s why it’s harder to slide into them or otherwise get “free”/“cheap” kills, that’s why it’s harder to fight them over cover, and in chunk range. When you’re walking at them to get into chunk range, they’re being given more accurate and up-to-date information regarding where you actually are, so hitting timing the shot is easier and more consistent. I also believe that whatever causes this “feeling” is not increased FPS.
#I’m a pcerdo now/PC Advantages
I’m writing this after having my PC for over two months, this thread could have been done sooner however I ran into a problem — the video game is considerably more fun and considerably better on PC so I wanted to spend my free time playing it instead of writing threads.
The very first thing I did after getting my PC was load into a private match, with the very first time I slid into a wall and cancelled I could immediately tell the difference. The very first time I shot my gun, I could immediately tell the difference as well — it’s massive.
With regards to movement, on PC each input feels noticeably faster and more accurate. This is especially noticeable on cancels, but you benefit from this reduced delay in every area.
I can explain it like this — anyone can recreate this for themselves.
On default — not defaulternate, real default. There’s a small delay between hitting ‘A’ and a slide happening. It’s minute, if you’re used to it you will not notice it and it’s been present in every game with alternate as an option.
When people try out alternate for the first time, they will basically be unable to string 2-3 walls together and it makes absolutely no sense to them. On default someone could hit 10-20 in a row, switch to alt and now they’re hitting one/two and then messing up the timing which leads to them just standing still doing nothing.
The reason for this is because you’re subconsiously adjusted to the delay that regular default gives you, so when you hit ‘A’ on default there’s a slight pause, your character moves towards the wall more and then the slide registers and you’ll slide. On Alternate this delay is significantly reduced, so your character doesn’t have that split second to move forward and ensure you hit the wall.
Once you learn alternate you’ll be able to bounce just as well as you can on default, you’ll just subconsciously adjust to the lack of a delay. Playing on ‘defaulternate’ also removes this delay, so anyone who is used to defaulternate would (in theory) be able to switch to alt and move with the same efficacy.
The delay (and subsequent removal) I’m speaking about here — which again all of you can go test for yourselves right now — is similar to the delay reduction I experience to all movement on PC. By that what I mean is that playing Alternate removes some slide delay, and playing on PC removes a similar amount of delay regarding every action you perform.
It’s a lot easier to move because of this, but not only that, you can do things on PC that a player on console would have to physically move their hands faster, and react earlier in order to do. This is game changing for everyone, but specifically for high-tier players — this exactly what led me to believe that PC players bounce “differently” or at least look “different” when they bounce, because they’re just doing it a whole lot faster and more consistently — within the first two minutes I was doing the exact same things I’d seen them do.
This isn’t the most clear advantage in terms of being able to see it, but in terms of being able to feel it — truly night and day. It actually makes the slower movement more bearable for me.
That was the very first thing I noticed — and the second thing I noticed with the very first shot I took is that your shots come out instantly on PC.
So there’s this global delay reduction with regards to pressing buttons/moving your sticks — there’s also a reduction in the time it takes your shot to leave your gun.
To clarify; you pull RT and that registers faster, and then on top of that, it comes out faster. This is a difference so great that I believe you can see it on video even after OBS, Vegas and Youtube take turns butchering the footage.
On console there’s a bit of ‘Muzzle Flash>>>>Register’ and on PC it looks on video, and feels in real time to be a lot closer to ‘Muzzle Flash>Register’ — I’ve provided some clips below. The first on an Xbox One, the second is on Series X and the third is on PC. I believe the difference between the console registration and PC registration is noticeable even on video — in real life it feels like you’re playing on host.
Here is a video showcasing this — check the upload date by the way, August 29th — that’s basically when this thread was ready, I just didn’t format.
From 0:00 to 0:25 the clips are Xbox One, from then until 1:10 they’re Series X and from then until the end of the video they’re PC.
The difference between the Xbox One and PC registration speed is immense, and the difference between the Series X and PC is visually noticeable in my opinion — as I said, in real life it feels like you’re playing on host.
[Note 4: Speaking of host, a little challenge for people who feel like Host vs. Off Host would be more noticeable on video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXMT3FXaExo In this 5 minute montage, I have two clips on host — I’ll wager that finding which clips those are is challenging for the majority of you. The difference is minute, it’s small — but host was a major advantage anyway.]
This might be the biggest advantage of them all — it’s almost identical to how shooting your gun on host felt and it’s something which truly has to be felt to be fully understood. It applies to every weapon, this is almost certainly why lancer/pistol and all the power weapons are so much easier, and I believe it’s also part of why the animation shot timings are different.
Which brings me to this fact.
It isn’t all great when you first get on PC because you have to relearn a few aspects to the game such as animation shots — the delay reduction changes the timing on them — this is very noticeable on Back-As where you’re sliding into the cover. For the first couple days I couldn’t Back-A anyone, I had to relearn the timing. Same story with wrapshots, I couldn’t hit one for a while and I would always hit the cover. That makes a lot of sense because I was used to the delay and shooting too early — animation shots aren’t skill, they’re muscle memory.
There’s a glitch with Up-As where if you’re doing it on the right cover, and you shoot too early, you’ll full spread the wall — this never happened to me once on console (I know it does happen on console), but now on PC I actually have this happen to me quite often, and it’s very annoying, and often gets you killed. This glitch specifically takes high xK scenarios for you and ensures your death instead.
It wasn’t all bad though, playing on PC made the Inverse shot & Reverse Up-A easier to do. These are both easy enough to do on console, however my timing on console for them was fairly poor — I go to PC where the shots have new timing and I can immediately do them effortlessly. I’m not specifically saying they’re better on PC, I’m saying the timing change made performing them instantly easier for me.
Adding to that, the LT+Pull shot, sometimes called the Gow5 Slapshot — performed by being on cover, hitting LT and simultaneously pulling back the left stick and firing, which bypasses the LT shot delay — it’s way better for me on PC. I pretty much never see anyone do this anyway, but it’s a good shot that I find more consistent on PC.
In addition to this, I also immediately noticed that I had to relearn how to active reload my gun because the button delay (which in my testing with regards to active reloads themselves I found to be about 40 miliseconds different) essentially made me miss the active reload early almost every single time for the first couple of hours until I relearned the timing.
I had believed before that PC players saw a more accurate representation of where you were, and that’s why it was harder to slide at them and kill them — I don’t neccessarily believe that’s untrue, however, this almost instant shot registration is much more noticeable, and in my opinion probably has a bigger impact.
It’s such a big deal that for the first 4-5 days I couldn’t actually blindfire and hit accurate shots consistently — I could LT & Popshot so much more effectively, but I couldn’t strafe at all.
When you strafe, you’re basically aiming by moving your left stick(character), lining the shot up and shooting. When you have these two incredible delay reductions, it disrupts that timing and causes you to miss more. Similarly, when you powershot people (walk at them) you’re trying to time the shot so that you chunk them at the earliest time — these delay reductions disrupt that timing so you wind up shooting too early and dying.
It’s exactly like playing on host in Gow3 — because Gow3 host wasn’t that good, and in order to really abuse it properly you had to be good on host specifically which meant playing on it a lot in order to used to the different timings.
It took me about a week to relearn how to blindfire accurately/powershot people at the same level as I could on console.
Where I immediately noticed the benefit is in regards to playing defensively — it’s so much easier to time the shots where someone is sliding into the cover, when they’re running at you. I can actually see people coming out of their runs, I can see them hit the wall — this is a high fps thing, but with the faster registration I can actually kill them within these frames.
I could LT more easily right away, everything is smoother and instant — people look like they’re moving slower. Everyone has something they excel in compared to other players of similar skills, mine is LTs — I’ve always been really good at hitting LTs even compared to people as good or better than me. Even with that, I noticed my ability to LT increase immediately — it’s my favorite part of PC.
Eventually, I got used to PC completely. I would say in total it took about 7-10 days before I felt fully comfortable. Once I was fully used to it? The advantage is incredible — it changes the game for you, it changes how you play, it changes how you approach situations and it changes your thought processes. It allows you to get away with doing more, and excel more when you’re technically doing less. Your lancer is stronger, so you can have more of an impact just sitting in a good position and shooting for your teammates. Your shots register better, so you can kill people who are going for animation shots against you with more consistency. Your movement is better, so you can take more chances and still get away with your life in situations where you couldn’t before.
Regardless of what you’re doing on PC, it’s going to be easier to do and more effective when you’ve done it.
Take this clip for example:
There’s a point where I go for a counter-wrap shot expecting the shirtless to wrap-shot me, he doesn’t wrap-shot so my shot misses, I’m able to retake cover, up-a back to where I started and immediately transition to a fake reaxion shot roadie-wide into one of the fastest Back-As I’ve ever seen and immediately come out of that, do two wall cancels and push the sniper. While this is totally possible to do playing on a Xbox One at 40 fps using a 9 foot projected screen — it’s a lot easier to do on PC, which is the most honest way of describing the PC advantage. It’s just easier — everything is just easier to do.
My ability to do intricate movement combinations, fakies etc increased overnight — and everything else increased once I actually relearned how to do it.
What about the other weapons? They’re all better — everything is better and nothing is worse. It’s either better hit registration, that you’re seeing a more accurate representation of where people actually are, or that your shots are just coming out faster — or some combination of all three.
In addition to the global delay reduction from playing on PC, the more than doubled fps (120 to 300) and the faster hit registration there’s another delay reduction I didn’t discover until 3 weeks later — overclocking your controller.
It sounds like a meme — but it’s real, it’s incredibly well documented in the CoD community, and gets nothing but glowing reviews across the board. It’s one of the most clear advantages one can see, it’s PC only (unless you buy a Titan Two which is a Cronus-like device) and what does it do exactly? It increases the polling rate of your controller to 1000hz from it’s standard 124hz — from 8ms to 1ms. The difference this makes is noticeable from the first button press, it takes all the delay reductions I’ve spoken about previously and reduces them further — again, this is PC exclusive unless you want to buy a separate device.
As one would expect from playing the game with an advantage, my stats have improved — the game is easier, my stats have gone up 10-30% across the board reflecting that. K/D, Win/Loss, MVP Percentage — everything has increased 10-30% and it’s still increasing further as we go on.
This is a screenshot of where I finished last season in TDM, I finished #2 overall which is relevant because it means I’m showing a very large sample size.
The final three weeks of this was spent on PC, and in that time my K/D went from 2.21 to 2.33, and my win/loss went from 7.9 to 9.5 — that includes the 50 games where I had the stutter glitch, and the week where I couldn’t hit a blindfire — that was while I was essentially relearning the game.
What about this season?
My win/loss has continued to go up, I’m at almost 11 now and my K/D has gone up even more, currently at 2.56. Points per match/round has gone up for everyone across the board due to the match win/solo bonus going up, however adjusted for that increase my averages have gone up as well. So not only is my K/D higher, I’m doing more in game at the same time — and that’s directly leading to more wins. Disclaimer right now, all of my TDMs are played duo queue with the same player. Our combined MVP percentage is literally 98 or 99% and this is verifiable on the leaderboards — in the games where I’m not MVP, he is MVP. We were number #1 and #2 on the all time leaderboards at one point before we quit.
An important thing to note in these stats is that I’m downing more people, this is highly important for me as I deliberately play for shotgun downs as much as possible — playing on PC allows me to play the game in almost the exact way that I want to play the game which is part of why I enjoy the game more now.
My K/D ratio increased 15.8% and my W/L ratio increased by 36.3% and most importantly these values are still increasing as I continue playing the game. I haven’t hit a plateau point yet on these either, they’re still increasing. In regards to MVP percentage, I saw a 4% increase from the first picture to the second going from 70% to 74% — this number is a bit flawed because again, my friend and I are MVP in literally, verifiably, over 99% of the matches we’ve played and we’ve only played matches together.
The game is genuinely so much better on PC — I believe eventually eSports should to move to PC just for the simple fact that when everyone is on PC the gameplay is a lot more consistent, perhaps it isn’t more skillful because it’s a lot slower (The same thing we’ve seen from people moving to Series X) but it is a far better experience.
The bottom line is this; whoever you are, whatever you’re doing, regardless of your skill level, if you’re playing on PC — the game is better, and the game is easier.