Since I bought a gaming PC a while back, I have been met with people saying that they could never get into it because of the sheer price of making the swap. Since becoming a PC gamer however, things could not be more different. I have in fact found it in ways cheaper than console gaming and by writing this article I aim to prove this. In this article i will be looking at things over the perspective of 5 years of gaming and how much it will theoretically cost you. Before people pick holes in this, I have used the model of a dedicated gamer and not a 2 game a year person (COD and FIFA of course).

Now that you have seen a nice pretty info-graphic, I will explain how this is true. So, in the next 5 years, you can sure as hell expect to have to buy a new Xbox and that will set you back at least £300 which in fact is quite a conservative estimate. I have made the assumption that this new Xbox will not break (a’ la Xbox 360 RROD) and will not be succeeded by another generation of console within these 5 years (getting pretty technical now). Of course, in order to play you need a monitor. This monitor linked here is a pretty standard monitor that will get most gamers by and will easily be high enough quality to last the 5 years.

Next up are the games and due to the nature of Consoles, for each and every game you buy, a big chunk of that money goes to the console developer. This usually results in around a £10 price hike on release day games. The average gamer may get say 10 release day games per year and over 5 years this will be an astonishing £2000. This relies on the principle that the gamer is lazy and doesn’t search around for a good deal. Furthermore, I would say the average gamer forks out for around 30 old release / arcade titles per annum. Considering licensing fees, this will come to around £300 per year and £1500 over the course of 5 years.

Accessories are pretty standard for the xbox being controllers, headsets and other bits and bobs you pick up along the way. 4 controllers, 2 headsets and 2 play and charge kits over the course of 5 years will take you to around £200. Xbox Live is also a considerable cost that gamers face today and at £40 a year (again presuming the gamer is lazy and doesn’t search around for good deals), this will amount to £200 over 5 years.

Onto the PC and the most significant cost is easily the PC itself. A standard PC build such as this model here with a GTX 560 instead of the GTX 550ti costs around £800 and can run games such as Battlefield 3 with ease (without anti-aliasing provided) and will last you easily 5 years.

Onto the games side of things, without those pesky licensing fees, you will only need to pay around £30 for the average release day title with amounts to £1500 over 5 years taking the model stated from the previous example. Furthermore, with services such as Steam, older games will also be much cheaper than Xbox counterparts and not considering the AMAZING deals that are on steam, I would say that 30 older games would set you back around £200 per year. This amounts to £1000 over 5 years. Accessories may be a bit more expensive for the PC but if you buy smart, they will easily last you 5 years. £300 would easily be a justified amount for keyboards, mice and headsets for 5 years of gaming.

So, there you go, proof beyond reasonable doubt that PC gaming is cheaper than sticking with your console (and looks much nicer too).