Experiencing PC gaming with integrated graphics.

Back in December, I decided to trade in my hunk of junk six year old HP Pavilion PC for a new custom built PC. Running on an Intel i5-4570, 8GB of RAM and a 1TB HDD with Windows 7, I was in PC gaming heaven. I couldn’t quite afford a new video card, so my 3 year old Radeon HD5770 was put into the PC as a stop gap until I could afford a new video card. It worked out great, pushing most of the PC games I had to high settings.

But then, tragedy struck. I saw graphical artifacts while playing Crysis, but thought nothing of it at the time. Several days later, my video card started spinning its fans loudly while I was idling on my PC, temperatures rising by the second. Even with a quick dusting, the card still got loud and didn’t show a picture. It happened to me again: a video card died on me. I got the HD5770 as an emergency replacement for my dead GeForce 8800GT back in 2010, and now I had another dead video card. I was amazed the Radeon lasted that long, maybe pushing all those polygons in those two months was a bit hard on the old gal.

So, for the past month I’ve been playing other games, such as binging on Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit from 2010 and playing through Call of Duty: Black Ops II on my 360. After being annoyed that I couldn’t play much on the PC, I decided to test something. All CPUs these days come with a integrated graphics chip. PC gamers won’t use this, opting to buy a video card to do all the heavy lifting for their gaming needs. I thought I’d give my i5 processor’s integrated graphics chip a shot in the meantime. After installing the newest drivers, I tried a bunch of games on Intel’s own integrated graphics, the HD4600 and saw the results. Boy, I was surprised.

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Happy birthday, blog.

One year ago, I had an idea: Rather than post my video game stuff on random blog sites, I decided to start a blog of my own. I started You Found a Secret Area around January 2, 2012. The first entry I wrote was for the MTV2’s Video Mods show, an idea I had brewing for a good month beforehand.

Today, I’ve posted over 30 entries, got a fair share of notice on a few websites, and got my feet wet in doing a simple blog about video games. This was something I decided to act upon, to hope to get noticed in some way. The first few years is usually the toughest, but I’m happy for some of the recognition I’ve received. For those who have been following the blog, I thank you. For those who just stumbled upon here, Welcome and enjoy your stay. Read the silly articles and stop asking how to get coins in The Price is Right Slots, I can’t help you there.

I got a big surprise coming soon, but I’m gonna keep things under wraps until I’m ready to launch it. The Secret Area is gonna roll into 2013 in a big way, and I hope you will join me on this ride. We’ve only just begun.