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This week's highs and lows in PC gaming

THE LOWS

Tom Senior: Soggy chips

I’ve been playing Monster Hunter: World on an old CPU this week, and it has been a trying experience. It’s not Monster Hunter’s fault, it’s designed for faster chips, but I am experiencing a type of ennui unique to PC gaming. I have bottleneck anxiety. The rest of my PC should run current games well, but for this one component.

The trouble is, upgrades like this can snowball. Maybe the latest chips need new sockets, which will mean a new mobo. By the time I’ve got all that I’ll probably need a new GPU to take on the games of 2019. All aboard the neverending upgrade train. At least I can rely on our hardware experts to guide me through these trying times.

Samuel Roberts: Club blues

Joe might be having a good time in GTA Online—and so am I, actually—but the missions that come with the new After Hours pack are pretty dull. In order to keep my club making a paltry $10k per in-game day, I have to grind these pretty passive quests of putting posters up, picking people up and smashing up cars. I kind of hoped running a nightclub might have some actual management elements, but it doesn't, really. 

As a hangout space, though, it's a pretty nice environment to be in, and I'm looking forward to getting yet another new radio station in GTA 5 over three years after its PC release. Not bad for a free update.

Steven Messner: Internet Simulator

Have you ever sat on Reddit or Twitter or whatever your favorite internet site is and just scrolled for hours and hours to the point where you know you should stop because it is a massive waste of time but you just want to keep going to see whatever is next on that endless internet horizon? That's No Man's Sky. It's a better game, definitely, but as I find myself playing for hours upon hours since its new update launched, I feel like the only thing propelling me forward is a morbid curiosity (and fear) that the next planet I land on will actually make me feel… well… anything. "Just one more planet," I say, hoping that this one will be notable in some meaningful way. And as I went to bed last night after binging it for almost six hours, I had the horrific realization that it never would.

Joe Donnelly: Oh, snap. 

My real low this week is having spent most of my free time arguing with mortgage companies IRL. Which means I’ve hardly found time to play games. And there’s a new GTA Online update out which, if you know me/have read my Highs entry above, is where I’d ordinarily have sunk my time over the last few days.

So what’s been going on, dearest PC Gamer readership? Why don’t you share your own highs and lows with me? If you’re making me choose, I’d say the fact that the Resident Evil 2 remake nearly cut that big zombified alligator was a close call. I hated that big bastard at the time, but I also loved how preposterous the fight was—and that you really could kill the thing with a combat knife. It looks like the RE2 remake takes itself more seriously than its source material, but I’d have missed the gator if it didn’t make the cut this time round. 

Chris Livingston: Personal Confuser

It's been a while so I guess it was time for another episode of that show everybody hates: My PC Is Acting Weird All Of The Sudden. This week I began having issues where clients and programs and browsers will briefly become unresponsive, as if they're about to crash, and then recover after about 10 seconds. (Oddly, it doesn't happen with games.) It's happened with everything from Chrome to Slack to Steam, and I dunno what's up because it's never done this before, and it's happening about a dozen times a day. Time to Google it and search through 4 year-old tech forum posts where no one has an answer besides 'bump' or 'I get this too, anyone solved it?'

Tyler Wilde: Black bars

I'm afraid I'm becoming one of those people who doesn't want to touch a game without ultrawide support. Sorry! I use a 21:9 display, and games that don't support it look like thumbnails to me (even though the 16:9 portion of it isn't actually that small). Unfortunately, the pre-release version of Monster Hunter: World's PC port is one of those games. Here's hoping that support for us wide folks is patched in before or shortly after release. I need everything to be very long, thanks.