As a computer technician, I get the opportunity to repair many different computers of all different brands, styles and sizes. Quite often a customer has a best guess on why their computer is slow, crashing or simply not working. And quite often, the customer may be correct in some aspects and not in others. One of the most common questions that I hear when a computer is coming in for either slowness or crashing is “Is it the games that are at fault”?
The fact is that this statement couldn’t be further from the truth in 95% of all computer repairs. First of all, computers are designed with games in mind and games are designed with the computer in mind. Computer games date back decades as does the development of the home PC. When a computer is designed for PC, the developers attempt to anticipate many problems that may occur from the game being installed and played on a pc. Although their methods are not foolproof, in the last 20 years of game development, they have come quite a long ways.
Secondly, a game only interacts with your computer when it is being played. While the game is installed but not running, is has almost zero effect on your computer system, except for the physical space that it takes up. So no, the games installed on your computer are most likely not making it slow.
When a game is running, it is unlikely that it will cause problems except with itself. Most problems a computer game has are in its own design flaw or overlooked problem. Often this can lead to the game crashing or not operating properly and sometimes in rare occasions, can cause the entire system to lock up. Typically when someone experiences a total computer lockup, reboot or freeze while playing a game, it’s not necessarily the games fault, but a fault in the computer system itself. This is often some sort of a system component that is either failed, failing or inadequate to run said game. It is possible that a computer system is up to specs for a game, with no issues whatsoever and a reboot or freeze can occur, however this is very rare and almost never happens.
The only real situation that can occur where a particular game would be at fault for causing problems with a computer is when a game’s physical install size takes up a large amount of the PC’s hard drive space, causing it to go into dangerously low levels (Under 15%). Of course, this isn’t necessarily the game’s fault but one of system requirements not really being met. And typically, if a game takes up a lot of space, it would normally require higher system specs and a computer that would normally meet those specs, should have a fairly large hard drive to begin with. It is possible of course to fill your hard drive up to almost full, install a game that practically maxes out storage and have issues from there. Again, this is more of a user error than a direct fault of the game itself. After all, if hard drive space is dangerously low, or near dangerous, then installing any program that would bring it to those levels or simply downloading or copying files to it would cause the same problems.
The fact is that video games are a huge driving force of the PC market. High end video games are a huge factor in the development of the latest generation of hardware and very few other markets really utilize the power that is in modern pcs. The fact is that if video games did not exist, many high level components would either not exist or be in less production, and thus higher costs, due to supply and demand.
So the next time you’re wondering if it’s those pesky games that slowing down your computer, it’s probably not. Have a computer repair technician diagnose the problem properly before any blame is laid and drastic, and possibly irreversible, damage is done.
Prepared by Richard Chase, Gadget’s Computers
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