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  1. #1
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    Your favorite video game sucks

    I had too much fun with the talk-me-down thread. I'm a deeply pessimistic and negative person, and I've been censoring myself for far too long just because people don't like to be brought down. This is the thread where cynicism is love! Write your worst reviews of well-loved games, free from the fear of rubbing anyone the wrong way!

    The guidelines:

    It should be a popular game. Skyrim, Dark Souls, Half-life-- these are all great choices for your negative review.
    It should be an honest review. The more recently you've played the game, the better. Ambivalence is acceptable: acknowledge good points, should any exist (lol they don't). Don't invent anything.
    It's okay if you have a love-hate relationship with the game. It's okay to be that guy on Steam with 1500 hours into Chivalry and a thumbs-down review. Sometimes it takes 1500 hours of careful exploration to really discover how deeply flawed a particular game is.
    Don't be a fan. It's okay to comment on people's reviews, to agree or argue; it's okay to re-review. But the thread's whole point is negative reviews of well-loved games, so don't take it personally!

    Let the rule of gloom commence in the Jaded Empire!

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Prolar Bear's Avatar
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    You know what? Mortal Kombat sucks. The whole series reeks of a puerile fixation on excessive gore and grimdark teenager aesthetics, and it only got worse with time, especially the latest game and the upcoming one, judging from trailers.
    So fuck you, MK. There's nothing transgressive about the gore, it's just pandering to the bloodthirsty and voyeuristic masses.

    Harumph. I'm probably biased but ohwell.

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Can I throw someone a fast ball? I'd like someone to rip Bioshock 2 a new one, no comments from anyone who gave up after an hour.
    I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way
    http://playingitwrong.wordpress.com/

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliocentric View Post
    Can I throw someone a fast ball? I'd like someone to rip Bioshock 2 a new one, no comments from anyone who gave up after an hour.
    You just love seeing things burn, don't you? I'll give it a try. I too like seeing things burn. Although I reckon a lot of insults will be flung my way.

    I completed Bioshock 2 within around 10 hours. Tried reading and listening to as much as possible and can now safely say: Bioshock 2 sucks. It iterated on the floaty shooting of the first Bioshock and improved in small parts. Which is the one thing I'll give it. But it's also the iteration that made this such a dull game to me. To start with, I can't for the love of anything holy remember any specifics about the plot. I remember the Big Sister thing but mostly because it was such an annoying enemy that it stuck. The areas it had, did blur together with those of Bioshock 1, to the point where I just can't tell which area is part of which game. Bioshock 2 is iterative to a fault, because it lacks its own identity.
    There was no real plot revelation, the foreshadowing was overbearing to a point of complete predictability, at least in what I do remember about it. /edit: or to put it into better words: The plot never surprised me or had any twists and turns that made it memorable, hence too predictable.

    The areas, while in that nice artstyle, had been seen before and weren't fresh anymore. It's more of the same, treading the same tried and tested ground with some minor adjustments. It's an idea that outstayed it's welcome for lack of new concepts. Something more akin to an expansion pack for the die hard fans, than a proper sequel. I also felt it was horribly outdated. The art style lend itself to glitz and glamour and the bright colors and excentric architecture enforced that idea. And then it completely fell apart because of the enemies. The splicers were... inconsequential to the world. Their animations were floaty, ever feeling disconnected from the ground. They looked wrong, but not because of their artstyle but because of some seriously hideous bumpmap accident. It didn't help that the unreal engine gave it that all too familiar plastic/cartoony look. These remarks apply to Bioshock 1 as well but it wasn't helped that 2 didn't iterate on that aspect.

    In short: It felt like an expansion pack made from dropped levels intended for Bioshock 1. It was iterative to a fault and treaded too much of the same ground thematically, visually and mechanically. It looked dated and had really conflicting artstyles between the environment and the enemies. The plot was entirely forgetable, I had to look it up and even with the help of a summary, I still couldn't recall most of it. It quite simply lacked it's own identity, something to make it a game of it's own.

    P.S.:
    It doesn't actually suck and I don't hate the game but I thought it was rather mediocre.
    Last edited by theForged; 10-08-2014 at 11:40 PM.

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    You didn't even mention the abortion boss battle.
    I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliocentric View Post
    You didn't even mention the abortion boss battle.
    This is emberassing but I honestly can't even remember. The hyperbolic answer would probably be: Must be repressed memories.

  7. #7
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    The worst part of Bioshock 2 was the crappy fatherhood theme. It was incredibly overwrought, involved the same bullshit evil mother them that was prevalent through the late aughts.

    If any series needs taking apart though, it's the Witcher. Mediocre combat mechanics, relatively flat side characters that probably rely on the books for characterization, terrible set piece boss battles, and then there was the cards.... And it's supposed to be savior of RPGs. One of the many reasons I'm glad the many kickstarted RPGs are coming out is that it puts the Witcher 2 back in perspective.

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    I'd rip into The Witcher but I did give up (several times) a few hours into the game. Crap combat, uninteresting characters, pedestrian pacing... nope. Also I don't know why RPS lets it get away with its sexualisation of women, particularly when context seems to be irrelevant. Also Bioshock 2's political undertones had all the subtlety of a man with a jackhammer outside your window at 6am.


    On topic: I really wanted to do an indie game but apparently that's off limits so... Half Life 2 sucks, and by extension, so does Half Life. What's wrong with modern FPS games? Did you say linear, scripted sequences and level design? Well here's your goddamn genesis right here: HALF fucking LIFE. Valve's magnum opus gave birth to the linear scripted shooter, with its clearly telegraphed set pieces, arena segments, and scripted story sequences. Half Life 2 just took it to the next level. Instead of shooting Combine or headcrabs, I'm stuck in Kleiner's lab while they talk about stuff like I'm not even there! And when they do include me, they're talking as if I know what's been going on! That made a little bit of sense in Half Life where Gordon Freeman was supposed to have been working at Black Mesa for a while, but he's been MIA for ages in HL2, and they still assume he knows everything! Even worse, Valve's clumsy story-telling occasionally makes concessions by addressing the player with a bit of story exposition. And that story goes nowhere - it follows the LOST method of story-telling by answering every question with circular thinking or another question. Attempts at creating an enigmatic threat fall short because there's no backstory or history delivered to the player. HL2 dumps you in the middle of the conflict with no idea of what's going on or why you should care. Suddenly: Combine. What are they? Why are they here? Why is Breen where he is? How does this new world work? How many other cities are there? Lol nevermind, here's a terrible vehicle segment to play through.

    The AI are passable but occasionally dead stupid. They navigate using pre-defined navigation nodes but occasionally get randomly stuck and can't proceed. This means you can take them out with little effort using your weapon of choice... of which there are several, and if there's any concession I can make it's that the weapons are fun.

    Half Life: Birth of the scripted sequence. Looking for something to blame? It isn't consoles: it's Half Life.
    Nalano's Law - As an online gaming discussion regarding restrictions grows longer, the probability of a post likening the topic to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea approaches one.
    Soldant's Law - A person will happily suspend their moral values if they can express moral outrage by doing so.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    On topic: I really wanted to do an indie game but apparently that's off limits so...
    Firstly and secondly, I said "popular," which isn't quite the same thing-- for instance, seeing as how Dwarf Fortress and Papers Please both have major newspaper write-ups (NYT I believe?) they certainly count as both popular and indie.

    And thirdly, the code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.
    Last edited by nate; 11-08-2014 at 02:08 AM.

  10. #10
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    These kinds of threads are ridiculous. None of these suck. They have flaws. And the point of the thread is to exaggerate.

  11. #11
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    Maybe, smullyoz, but Total War: Shogun 2 definitely, actually, sucks. I say this because I know: Steam says I have-- oh my god, nevermind, I'm not telling you how many hours I've poured into this shitty, shitty game, which was famously, unambiguously, thought-wot-of and tacritic me'd.

    See, my problem is that I love samurai. I don't even know who to blame; Frank Miller maybe? He's responsible for a lot that's wrong with my life.

    But Shogun 2 has so many problems. Shall we just skip the realism bits? Like how castles can be stormed-- and won-- by roughly even numbers of troops? How single ships can carry armies, but those armies won't repel boarders? Let's skip those parts.

    Abstract when it shouldn't be, then simulative when it shouldn't be. There are few games where your archers actually run out of arrows, fewer still where your musketeers run out of arrows. There are few games where your arrows slam into the cabin walls of ships harmlessly and naval battles are determined more by the ship models used than by in-game statistics.

    There are even fewer tactical/strategic games where every fight is a 1-on-1 duel, and outnumbering your opponent just feeds into the battle equation. There are plenty of games with a hard limit on the number of units per army, but it's usually a bad idea.

    Shogun 2, time and again, mixes too-much-simulation with too-much-abstraction, and, worse, does so in exactly opposite the situations where it would make sense to do so. Naval fights should be more abstract, because they just don't work with the way CA simulates them. Land fights should be more simulated, because that's our window into the world: we expect multiple little dudes to be trading blows at once! With CA's solutions, everything becomes an exploit-- and if you try not to exploit, there's not really any game left.

    For instance, consider the basic rock-paper-scissors of the game. It's intended that archers beat spearmen beat cavalry beat archers. Which isn't even good in theory, because RPS is amongst the most boring of games. But in practice, the actual way that this works is that multiple units of cavalry can use their manueverability to rapidly outnumber a flank of spearmen and, given CA's wonky battle resolution, force a rout without causing any casualties. Meanwhile, infantry can avoid most archer fire by micromanagement and jinking. Archers are still useful, because it's trivial to use them to empty their quivers into castles, nearly risk-free-- but they're reduced to siege engines. What you end up with is less a game of Rock Paper Scissors and more a game of Rock Vegetable Fraternite.

    Totally misplaced priorities.

    Here's a picture from Shogun 2.



    Damn, isn't that beautiful? But here's what you're actually going to see during your game:



    CA put so much work into making this game work at a scale that is totally useless to anyone playing the game. This isn't just a case of them wasting developer time, either. Considering the game, Shogun 2 performance, load times, and game size are abysmal. People playing on reasonable machines for the time of Shogun 2's release were faced with that super irritating problem of multi-threaded mouse where you have to hold the mouse still for a second after clicking or else the main thread will think you clicked someplace you didn't. This, in a game full of click-and-drag for both selection and deployment.

    In fact, this quixotic focus on a scale useless to the player is exactly why CA has ended up with the aforementioned abstracted duel-based battles. It's all so they can show pretty animations at that small scale. Never mind that nobody is even looking.

    Shitty, shitty new features. I've already mentioned what a terrible implementation of naval combat Shogun 2 ended up with. It's not unheard of for naval battles to time out because of the problems of simulated arrows in the context of complex models. Ships frequently get caught on geometry; the first lesson of winning naval battles is to avoid islands which will hold your ships like Gorilla Glue.

    Add to this that Shogun 2, despite always-online features that would permit some decent data gathering, has ridiculously different outcomes from auto-resolve and actually resolve for naval battles-- well, and for land battles too. This makes it so that good play means using auto-resolve strategically. If you want to win, you can't skip the tactical battles (and neither can you engage in them every time, either). So you're stuck playing through these shitty, buggy, slow naval battles.

    I understand some of these diplomacy options are new as well. Diplomacy is great. Strategy is far less about getting more of your dudes on some node than some other guy, than it is about diplomacy. Unfortunately, CA's diplomacy is crap.

    It's possible to become fabulously wealthy, early in the game, by selling military access. Trade deals that would be beneficial to everyone involved are declined as a matter of course. Any number of deals can be tested with a perfect prediction of the response, but actual money values have to be hand-entered, leaving the ambitious daimyo playing the exciting "guess what number I'm thinking of" mini-game. Ongoing transactions like trade agreements can be exchanged for single-turn windfalls-- and then broken the next turn, without any cost.

    And, of course, no matter what you do, every alliance is doomed, because at a certain point, every single AI gangs up on you in something CA likes to call "realm divide." (What I call it isn't suitable for print.)

    That voice acting. I don't know. Have you played it? This is Rourke in Breakfast at Tiffany's awful.

    I am sure there is so much that I missed. CA has a wonderful idea in their strategic+tactical games; they have very few competitors. Yet they consistently make terrible decisions about design.

  12. #12
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    @nate that was beautiful. I've not touched a total war since napoleon but my god, there is a developer which needs to let some designers go and hire new ones.

    There is do much easy meat for this thread, I'm pondering what to corner in the shower block and kill with a sharpened toothbrush, but if anyone has suggestions I'll sic 'em at my discretion.
    I'm failing to writing a blog, specifically about playing games the wrong way
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    Jedi Knight 2 - It had cinematic looking saber duels, so everyone loved it and ignored the fact that:
    - It had tiny crap level design that wasn't very star wars, and certainly wasn't in the same league as the awesome Jedi Knight.
    - The weapons other than the lightsaber were useless.
    - The story was crappy, and they managed to cram in a totally out of place love story between Kyle and Jan.
    - The main boss/bad guy was kind of rubbish.
    - The force powers weren't as good or varied as the original.
    - Even the saber combat that looked cinematic, tended to mainly come down to luck. You both did your own thing and one of you won.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliocentric View Post
    There is do much easy meat for this thread, I'm pondering what to corner in the shower block and kill with a sharpened toothbrush, but if anyone has suggestions I'll sic 'em at my discretion.
    I get the feeling that somewhere in your dark, mysterious past, a f2p game, maybe DOTA, made one mistake: it didn't finish the job. For years, you've laid low while your hatred smoldered.

    Now, finally, the time for vengeance has come. What was that game?

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillButNotBen View Post
    Jedi Knight 2 - It had cinematic looking saber duels, so everyone loved it and ignored the fact that:
    - It had tiny crap level design that wasn't very star wars, and certainly wasn't in the same league as the awesome Jedi Knight.
    - The weapons other than the lightsaber were useless.
    - The story was crappy, and they managed to cram in a totally out of place love story between Kyle and Jan.
    - The main boss/bad guy was kind of rubbish.
    - The force powers weren't as good or varied as the original.
    - Even the saber combat that looked cinematic, tended to mainly come down to luck. You both did your own thing and one of you won.
    it's a shame too. They refined the system for multiplayer but for some reason the more tactical multiplayer combat never made it inot the single-player ...

    I think Academy did a better job putting some finesse into the saber system, though I can't say I'm a terribly big fan of the mechanics in Dark Forces II. Might have been good at the time, but I have played very few games that are as mechanically dated as Dark Forces II. It plays terribly. I don't see how Outcast could be thought of as mechanically worse in terms of ... anything. Story? Maybe; I had to quit Dark Forces II because the gameplay was so terrible.
    I think of [the Internet] as a grisly raw steak laid out on a porcelain benchtop in the sun, covered in chocolate hazelnut sauce. In the background plays Stardustís Music Sounds Better With You. Thereís lots of fog. --tomeoftom

    You ruined his point by putting it in context thatís cheating -bull0

  16. #16
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    Skyrim: There's a Czech saying that sums it up nicely: A teaspoon of honey is better than a bucket of shit.

  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Wenz's Avatar
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    UT series does pleeenty wrong so it shouldn't be a problem to bring it down.

    Trying to keeping it short, movement has gimmicks like jump dodge and cooler elevator/anti grav jumps, a feeling of openess from few maps quake ones never got right, weapon variety makes a good room for weapon specialization.
    Along with all that a share of small lessons: cool weapon animations not to make the game too experience dependant because of worthless stuff, not so serious pvp modes and mutators and generally a rich range of options.

    Compared to quakes they are twitcher and generally varied and yet they come from a single player game with ideas hurting the multiplayer ones.

    The dodge jump is not a great idea in this kind of fps because it makes projectiles below fast ones dysfunctional, it's kept low in order not to be too unpredictable, doesn't have any thrill of dodging and doesn't make for good movement (for example players dodge jump forward at inconsistent speed with everything that this brings other than awkwardness).
    The maps are mixed bags because of loads of unplayable small ones and few legendary ones like deck 16 and facing worlds' main version (and rankin in a later game with its own share of horrible small maps).
    Weapons are a whole thing on their own. Location damage fires up weapons' one bringing up stuff that suits slow movement aka very lethal with unreliable damage, a third of the weaponry is worthless, impact/shield jump replaces the otherwise deadly rocket jump regardless of what people remember, some fires are delayed to prevent slick shots, armors become very important. The shock rifle in particular is both genius and horror in one and provides an overwhelming individual power. Bubbles to poke convey the overall idea, slow orbs allow for target's movement but they also allow the weapon wielder to trigger a huge explosion anywhere at anytime and all of this makes the SR the most exploited weapon in the whole series.

    None of this stays the same; ut99 is the one that flows better, 2k3 sucks, 2k4 has weaker weapons and floaty movements, ut3 is shiny fat with issues.
    Everything else from voice messages, powers, titan, suicide vehicules bumping everything and everyone, brightskins and disco lights etcetcetc is just a lot of fat that doesn't add to the flavour and no1 really attempted at changing modes like deathmatch and ctf ones in decades.

    Also Morpheus is lost and that's the map that kept me a year in ut99. I just like "gravity volumes" (only reason I played Orbital Gear).

    So yeah ut games suck
    Last edited by Wenz; 11-08-2014 at 10:41 AM.
    post in progress

  18. #18
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    Skyrim
    You spend 8 hours on unwrapping the shiny paper, thinking about all that delicious chocolate. After unwrapping you realise that inside is just a shit with diarrhea filling. Then you cry in the corner.

    Deus Ex
    Sepcial agent that have aim worse than toddler handling Dirty Harry's magnum.

  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    I could not get into Deux Ex at all. It was so ... dull ...

    But it was silly, at times. I had to crawl to the end of the tutorial after blowing up both my legs in my efforts to hide from the Mech next to some, it turns out, explosive barrels. It had to build a bridge out of crates to crawl over to the other side because I couldn't jump up out of the water, and then I crawled all the way to the finish line. It was gloriously silly. It all went downhill from there.
    I think of [the Internet] as a grisly raw steak laid out on a porcelain benchtop in the sun, covered in chocolate hazelnut sauce. In the background plays Stardustís Music Sounds Better With You. Thereís lots of fog. --tomeoftom

    You ruined his point by putting it in context thatís cheating -bull0

  20. #20
    Lesser Hivemind Node Spacewalk's Avatar
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    Deus Ex is naturally awful but at least it had lots of stuff to mess around with. It looks like Gravity's Rainbow when you put it next to Human Revolution's dime novel.

    Remember all that environmental interaction that you loved about Deus Ex? Well kiss all that goodbye you spoiled child because all you're getting is crates and fire extinguishers. Everything else is nailed down. You're going to have to forget about a non-lethal playthrough because there boss fights where killing is mandatory. Finally everything is viewed through a Berocca tinted camera lens which will have your eyes cursing and your optometrist greedily rubbing his hands together.


    Skyrim, now that's a popular one, Skyrim is like a display in a hunting store. It's mannequins holding weapons posing next to stuffed animals in plastic environments and a painted backdrop. And that's all that needs to be said really.

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