13 Important Tips for (New, Experienced) PC Gamers

PC gaming offers a lot of variety compared to console gaming such as more options for games and the ability to upgrade your desktop PC. If you are feeling ready to purchase a PC for gaming and want to learn more check out my post on things to know before buying a PC. It goes into depth on the various parts within a PC and what to look out for.

Whether you are new to PC gaming or someone who has been gaming for a while these tips are worth checking out. You can learn info on where to buy games, software to download, groups within the gaming community and much more.

1. Places To Buy PC Games

There are various platforms available to purchase PC games online. Using a few different ones will allow you to check for competing prices and find games that exist on one platform but not another.


Download Steam

The current most popular online game store is Steam. You can regularly find PC games that are discounted and they have even bigger sales during popular seasons like around Summer, Halloween, November, Winter, and Spring. There is a variety of games to choose from including early access games, free games, and the latest games on the market.

Steam does allow users to buy a controller from them but it is not necessary to play any of the games. I would recommend sticking with your mouse and keyboard for gaming for a better gaming experience.


Go to Humble

Humble is a game store that donates money to charity and allows you to buy games as a bundle for a discounted price. After buying games within Humble you are given a key that allows you to play your game from Steam, UPlay, GOG or multiple other platforms.


Download Itch

Itch is an online game store where you can buy indie games from up and coming game devs. If you are looking for a different type of games to play then giving Itch a try may be for you. Some games within the store come with a Steam key, which can help you keep your purchased games within one place.


Go to Gog

Gog is another online game store to buy games of your choice. The advantage of GOG is that they offer classic games that you may not find on Steam. You can get a full nostalgic feeling to some of these classic games because some of them come with the original box art as a PDF with the soundtrack as well.

2. Build Your Own vs. Pre-Build

Going the build your own PC route is generally cheaper and you get more bang for your buck. The advantage here is that you know exactly what parts are going into your PC and you will learn how to put a PC together.

Knowing where each part in a PC goes is advantageous because if you ever want to upgrade your PC you will know exactly how to do so. The only thing you need to keep in mind is whether certain parts of your PC are compatible and can fit within your PC such as if you buy a motherboard that holds Intel CPUs then make sure to not buy an AMD CPU for it.

Another example is knowing when to buy low profile RAM or high profile RAM. For the most part, you want to stick with low profile because depending on your cooling system the high-profile RAM may run into it and not be able to fit in your PC build.

A pre-built PC saves you the hassle of having to struggle through putting your PC together and some companies even just ask what types of games you play and will build you a PC according to the games you like. This can be an understandable route to go towards because PCs are not cheap and having a professional put it together for you can save you the time and money if you were to break a component in the process.

3. Download Discord

Download Discord

Discord is a popular audio communication app within the gaming community. It also offers free text, image, and video communication. Communication happens within a Discord server and these servers are dedicated to numerous different things. For example, you can find a server for many different games on the market and within the servers, you can communicate with other people who play the game to get tips and tricks on the game.

The advantage of discord is how quickly you can communicate with people because you do not necessarily need an account to communicate with people. If the server you are trying to join does not require a registered account then you can begin communicating with people as soon as they give you the link to their server.

4. Take Proper Care of Your PC

Make sure to take care of the software and hardware on your PC. For the hardware, make sure to keep your fans clean. Proper airflow through your PC is necessary to prevent overheating and damage to parts within your PC. I wrote an article on Why computers heat up which you can check out here.

For the software make sure to have anti-malware software installed on your computer to make sure that no malicious activity is being taken place on your computer.

You can also take precautions by keeping your operating system up date. This is because these updates usually include the most up to date security updates.

5. Come up With Your Own Sensitivity Settings

Many games offer different mouse sensitivities for moving around within the game. It can be tempting to just copy someone else’s sensitivity or just use the default one but it is better to come up with your own.

The reason it is better to come up with your own because your sensitivity helps dictate your play style. If you like to play a little slower and have a better time reading your surroundings then maybe it is better to go with a lower sensitivity. On the other side, a faster sensitivity will allow you to react quicker and play more aggressive. There is also keeping your sens in the middle for a best of both worlds playstyle. They all have their pros and cons and it is up to you to find out your personal preference.

6. Watch Twitch

Download Twitch

Twitch is a live streaming platform where you can find gamers playing various games. Watching other streamers play the same games as you can be entertaining and you can learn new techniques and strategies from them. Many people on twitch play games fulltime so they know a lot of great strategies.

Depending on the size of the streamer you can also find responsive people on the platform that are happy to answer questions about the game you are playing and talk about topics outside of gaming.

7. Get a PC with an SSD and HDD

Solid State Drive is quicker storage for reading and writing data but it costs more money. The Hard drive disk cost less money, therefore, you can get more space for less money. It is recommended to download your OS on your SSD so that you can turn on your computer faster and download games on your HDD.

Although accessing data from an HDD is slower it is not necessary to have all your data on your SSD which is why it is useful to have both. There are games that exceed 100 GB of data which is a lot of space. Depending on the brand you go with you can get around 2 TB of HDD space for the same price as 500 GB of SSD.

8. Get Quality Peripherals

If you can, I would recommend starting off by purchasing a gaming keyboard and mouse. Gaming keyboards typically use keyboard switches which are more comfortable to type on than membrane keyboards. Depending on the switch you get though they can be louder than membrane keyboards. Membrane keyboards are typically popular because of their price and how easy they are to find but they are not optimal for gaming.

A gaming mouse also has better response time than a cheap mouse you can find on the market. Gaming mice typically come with extra programmable buttons on the side of them that can be used to give you an advantage in the game you are playing.

Gaming monitors have faster refresh rates and sync with the game you are playing better. When you come by a gaming monitor you will notice that there is a number measured in Hz associated with it like a 144 Hz monitor. This number refers to how many images are displayed per second every time the monitor refreshes. Higher refresh rates simply mean that you will see more images per second and has nothing to do with better graphics in your monitor.

Headphones can help give you a competitive edge while playing because they allow you to hear your surroundings better. There is a difference between gaming headphones and regular headphones. Quality gaming headsets from companies offer 3-dimensional surround sound which helps increase your awareness of the surroundings around you.

Check out the keyboard section and headset section of my recommended products to see the gaming keyboard and gaming headset I recommend to give a try.

Many gaming headphones offer great noise cancellation and can be used for listening to music.

If you own gaming headphones than most likely it came with a mic as well. The mic they come with are not the best quality though that is why looking into a dedicated mic may be what you are looking for. This is especially helpful if you plan to communicate with multiple people at once through voice communication to allow them to hear you better.

Buying speakers for your gaming PC is not a bad idea if you do not want to always wear a pair of headphones while playing games or enjoy other audio content. Headphones are more advantageous since you can hear better but sometimes you are just trying to relax and not wear them all the time. Plus after a while, the pressure from certain headphones may start to hurt your head.

9. Can be Cheaper

Although the upfront cost of a desktop PC can be costly, the games for a PC are pretty cheap and you can find a lot of free games in the online stores mentioned earlier.

If you are debating whether to go towards console gaming or PC gaming then keep in mind that you can get a PC for the same price as a console that performs just as well, if not better, than a console. Over time though you can upgrade your PC with better parts while for a console you are locked in to the current system until the company produces a new one.

You may find yourself saving more money with the cheaper games on a PC and able to upgrade your desktop PC sooner than you thought. There are console exclusive games to keep in mind though so do some research on the type of games you enjoy playing and weigh the pros vs the cons when it comes to your personal preferences.

10. Backward Compatibility

The advantage of PC gaming over console gaming is that games are backwards compatible on a PC. Every few years there are new generations of a console such as going from the Xbox 360 to the Xbox One and the PS3 to the PS4. If there any games that you enjoyed on the previous generations of these consoles then there is a chance that they will not be playable on the newer consoles.

Consoles have made efforts to add older games to their lineup but it is not by using the disk and rather signing up for subscription services for PlayStation or having a few CDs being backwards compatible for Xbox. These methods do not support all older games from previous generations though. You get a more guaranteed chance of finding older games you enjoyed from a PC.

11. Capture in Game Video

Within Windows 10 and certain games, you can capture videos of the games you play. You can use these videos to learn from your mistakes within a game or create your own videos to share with friends.

To do this in Windows press the Windows logo + G on your keyboard to open the game bar. Then click the record button to start recording and click the stop recording button when you are finished. There is also a button to take screenshots.

Within this interface you can also get a quick snapshot of your CPU, GPU and RAM usage. If you have an Xbox account you can get a quick snapshot of which friends are online and you can communicate with them through this interface.

12. Download PC Monitoring Apps

PC monitoring Apps can give you real-time data on the health status of your components and the temperature that they are running at. It is important to monitor important parts like your CPU that should stay within a temperature of 45-60 degrees Celsius. The two PC monitoring apps to keep in mind are Speccy and HW monitor. It is only necessary to download at least one of the apps.

Speccy and HWMonitor provide you with the current operating system you are running, a thorough health summary of each part within your PC including the temperature they are at and gives you a description of each spec within your computer. This is helpful to determine whether any component is in danger of being damaged.

13. PC Gaming Communities

Along with finding communities in Discord, you can also go to Reddit to find many gaming communities. Within Reddit, there are communities for building your own PC, game deals, and a pc gaming subreddit. There are many niche subreddits out there pertaining to PC gaming and endless tips to help you get into PC gaming.

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