PC Building Simulator Review: The Bare Bones

While you're on the waiting list for a new graphics card and more, why not dabble in some PC builds in PC Building Simulator. A game. For the PC.

Writing a review about PC Building Simulator is like a review of Star Wars Episode whatever-was-the-one-with-Dark-Helmet in it. It’s old news. Everyone’s seen it. Most people interested in building PCs has played this game.

More so if you got it for free via Epic Games Store

It’s fair to say that I’ve had an unhealthy reaction to it. It’s not that it’s a bad game, but it’s terribly addictive. Like most simulators, some nonchalant member from your clan has left their legacy to you. In the case of PC Building Simulator, it’s your uncle Tim. Also, he’s not leaving it to you. Instead, you have to buy him out, 10% at a time.

After running his little PC repair business into the ground, it’s your job to turn it around and make a name for yourself. And some money. Initially, it’ll be virus removal, shifting up into the world of the meticulous and benchmarking. In this scenario, installing Bench3D (or similar – I’ve already forgotten the name) from your USB followed by lots of swapping out parts will ensue.

PC Building Simulator Review - The colour purple
The colour purple. Source: PR

Again, it’s likely tgat most people have already played this or who have an interest in the subject will undoubtedly have built their own PC at some point. My first build was a 286, and in those days, RGB was a reference to your monitor settings. Now it’s all holograms, wormholes and all that other trickery you kids use.

However, as a ‘game’, it’s pretty accurate. PC Building Simulator (from Cladium Kiss and The Irregular Corporation – they’re pretty good live) has a tutorial, but that was ignored. If you’ve dabbled with the hobby/profession, getting started is easy, but by the time you’re doing the benchmarking, it can be infuriating yet almost an obsession.

The usual formula follows: open your email and accept or reject upcoming jobs. Each email summarises the requirements, with some hints at what the client is expecting, e.g. new colour-coded cables, or perhaps they’re a brand whore that likes MSI or EVGA.

These latter points are essential as, through each job you complete, the customer will give you a rating. The higher the rating, the better the jobs, the faster you level up, and the more the game opens up with new components and the cash that comes with it. PC Building Simulator has many big names here like NZXT and GIGABYTE, but some made-up ones like Omega OS and Microsoft. No, the latter does not make a cameo.

PC Building Simulator Review - Hood rat
Hood rat. Source: PR

The workspace is pretty cool. Besides customising your work area (cosmetic only), upgrades are available for more workstations, storage and tools to perform your job. Said tools include automated actions such as screw removal or a detailed analysis of a build and component ratings.

But of course, PC Building Simulator isn’t the real thing as you can’t crack your motherboard, uninstall and reinstall the whole thing because you forget to plug in one lead, and when you do cock up with an incompatible part, you can buy a new one in-game, without having to wait for a part to be shipped out as in real life.

That said, there’s a default shipping date of 3-5 days for $10, next day for $30, but if you want your parts in your hand the same day(not those parts, perv), that’ll cost you $100, and it adds up when you have to pay your rent, utility bills, and of course, source the parts required for a build.

In many ways, PC Building Simulator complements real-life in that you don’t have the worry of effing it all up. Been there. At the same time, overclocking, piping, and benchmarking are so common that you no longer have a conveyor belt mentality and genuinely try to solve problems. Often, the solution is breaking down a PC, cleaning it up, and then ordering and replacing the part (sometimes within a deadline) at a profit. The worst is when it’s the motherboard, and you have to strip everything out.

PC Building Simulator Review - Desktop
Desktop. Source: PR

PC Building Simulator is an excellent simulator – quite possibly one of the better simulations I’ve played as you can’t cheese it like some other titles. There’s a ton of DLC available as well, including more licensed gear, so plenty to keep you out of mischief. Could it teach you new skills? Maybe you’d get a better understanding of compatibility and try out some aesthetically pleasing setups, but you won’t learn anything about data salvage, lost screws or putting on too much thermal paste. Life experiences you need to go through, but perhaps at somebody else’s expense. Overall, this is one of the more realistic simulators out there that gives the illusion that you know what you’re doing.

Got your thirst for customer service and custom builds? May I suggest Aquarium Designer? It’s had some updates, i.e. new features, since the review.