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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus
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    !?Games with the worst tutorial EVER!? My vote - Disciples II

    For various reasons I decided to give Disciples II a whirl this weekend - and as I'd not played a Disciples game before, I (sensibly, I thought) selected the Tutorial.

    Now I'm not sure if it's a translation issue but what I got was NOT a tutorial and I cannot remember any game which made less effort to tell me how to play it...

    After creating a Lord I was told to "Select the Moving Party" and "something something from the somewhere somewhere" zzzzzzz.

    No clue as to what the fuck these things mean - no flashing button (and there are a LOT of buttons) hinting at what to hit - erm...

    Stepping back a bit - not even the usual (tiresome) 'how to use a mouse and keyboard' stuff - not even a hint as to how to select and move anything was given - do I need to buy Disciples I? :)

    After much clicking and faffing I think I made a party but they didn't appear on the map - when I managed to get them to do that, my first attempt at moving them made them DISAPPEAR again.

    When I got them back and moved them I was told to go 'somewhere' and meet 'someone someone' - no clue as to what/where/which direction - no hints as to a map or anything like that - after a bit of wandering I found them and lost the will to continue...

    I'm not sure what they had in-mind when they created this 'tutorial' - I reckon if I'd been driven to the manual I'd have gotten further. Yes! It has a manual but it's a typical old-school manual which is mostly useless because it's a list of all the menu options and UI features with no real attempt to explain how to play - but they were all like that once-upon-a-time.

    I've recently gotten around to playing a few games I'd never tried before - Master of Magic, SMAC and XCOM amongst them - and they all had manuals that even when you'd read the whole thing, you still didn't know which button turned the fucking game on!

    Once upon a time did they just ask random people to write the manuals? I realise a car manual doesn't tell you how to drive one, just how to open the windows etc, but that wasn't the model of manual writing to follow here surely!? When did the penny drop and someone said "Hey, it might be an idea to guide people into this stuff - then people who aren't autistic might figure it out!!"

    Seriously - before the internet, how the fuck did people work out how games worked!?

    Were the early years of PC gaming - those first years of games being a bit more complex than arcade games - a massive collection of people pressing on things and guessing what the fuck they did? It must have taken longer than most current games take to complete just to make a move! :)

    Are there worse examples than this!?

    I'm not sure I want to know but - go on - tell me anyway ;)

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gundato's Avatar
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    I really dislike "Let's bash games" threads, but that STILL sounds more helpful than the tutorial of any Derek Smart game (Battlecruiser Millenium is probably the most well-known one).
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  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundato View Post
    I really dislike "Let's bash games" threads, but that STILL sounds more helpful than the tutorial of any Derek Smart game (Battlecruiser Millenium is probably the most well-known one).
    The Battlecruiser series had tutorials? I thought it was just "Priority alert, we have intruders onboard! Marines assigned to search duty!" followed by an explosion. (Dr) Derek Smart then appears and tells you that his game is the greatest thing ever invented and bans you because you couldn't work the TACSCAN screen.

    Greatest game series ever made. The progression is astounding. I still can't figure out how (Dr) Derek Smart managed to take BC3k and make BCM almost exactly the same except for the inclusion of new infantry modes and an upgraded engine. And then we had Universal Combat, which was almost exactly the same with another upgraded engine. (Dr) Derek Smart is truly our lord and savior come to Earth.


    Um... back on topic, I think a lot of games do tutorials the wrong way, particularly some of the Paradox titles. IMO a good tutorial isn't just procedural "put this here and click this because we tell you to" because interfaces generally aren't an issue (unless you're Dwarf Fortress). One thing I've noticed is that some games tend to do a crap job at explaining their mechanics which is what really needs to be taught.

  4. #4
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Pretty much every single-player campaign for every RTS and FPS on the market nowadays is an extended tutorial for multiplayer.
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  5. #5
    Lesser Hivemind Node Oak's Avatar
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    It's a tie between Hitman: Blood Money's tone-deaf gangsta shoot-'em-up and Hearts of Iron 3's click-through series of pop-up messages narrated by Adolf Hitler, who ends it by killing himself.

  6. #6
    Network Hub Gwilym's Avatar
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    Is that Hitler one true? That's amazing.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    The Battlecruiser series had tutorials? I thought it was just "Priority alert, we have intruders onboard! Marines assigned to search duty!" followed by an explosion. (Dr) Derek Smart then appears and tells you that his game is the greatest thing ever invented and bans you because you couldn't work the TACSCAN screen.
    You could make up a similar example about Dwarf Fortress.

    Except it's free and Toady isn't a complete douche, just a ~21% one.

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gwilym View Post
    Is that Hitler one true? That's amazing.
    Yes, but he doesn't quite come right out and say "Yo wut up I'm Hitler let's play some wargames grab your dice." Leans heavily on some sort of Hipster Hitler in his painting days if I remember it correctly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mohorovicic View Post
    You could make up a similar example about Dwarf Fortress. Except it's free and Toady isn't a complete douche, just a ~21% one.
    Heh, true. DF is probably far worse than any of the Battlecruiser games, but so far as I know it's mechanically sound without a troubled release history. (Dr) Derek Smart has never had a smooth release. On the other hand, he does release his older games for free.

  9. #9
    Lesser Hivemind Node internetonsetadd's Avatar
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    Battlecruiser 3000AD was supposed to stand in for missing out on losing my virginity during my junior year of high school, thanks to a critical message my sister never gave me. I was really depressed as a senior.

    Oh, this thread. Chivalry's tutorial kind of sucks.

  10. #10
    Moderator Anthile's Avatar
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    My vote goes to Europa Universalis 3. Even after four expansions it's still broken, and that in a game that is about as forthcoming with information as a Japanese POW during world war two.
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  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Lukasz's Avatar
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    lets say paradox strategy games as victoria 2 is also ksdjflkasjfklsdjfkl when it comes to tutorial.

  12. #12
    Network Hub Gwilym's Avatar
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    Is that Hipster Hitler one true? That's amazing.

  13. #13
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus coldvvvave's Avatar
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    Witcher 2 - gameplay isn't even that hard to grasp but people complained so CDP added a poorly made tutorial. It's bad both gameplay- and lore-wise. Some kind of tournament, with mages and gargoyles... what? They couldn't come up with something lore-friendly? Also, I couldn't do a riposte and thus complete that miserable excuse for a tutorial until I sheathed and then unsheathed the sword, of course I had to google that one, game never told me. Then it just stuck for no reason. This tutorial killed my second attempt at playing W2.

    XCOM:EU - that one just didn't let me do anything
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  14. #14
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coldvvvave View Post
    XCOM:EU - that one just didn't let me do anything
    You didn't have to play it. You could have skipped it - you still have to play the mission but there's no MOVE HERE AND LET YOUR SOLDIERS DIE BECAUSE SCRIPTING.

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Drake Sigar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trjp View Post
    Seriously - before the internet, how the fuck did people work out how games worked!?

    Were the early years of PC gaming - those first years of games being a bit more complex than arcade games - a massive collection of people pressing on things and guessing what the fuck they did? It must have taken longer than most current games take to complete just to make a move! :)
    Yeah, it was horrible (and also kinda wonderful). There was no established rules for designing video games. Genres hasn't been studied for years and perfected yet, so instead of a tutorial we often got stuck with a stonking huge manual and some other junk. Right now I'm holding a plastic wheel with strange symbols on it, bundled with an old DOS game, and I have no idea what it does. The only reason I haven't given it a spin is out of concern that I might be transported inside Jumanji.

  16. #16
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus coldvvvave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    You didn't have to play it. You could have skipped it - you still have to play the mission but there's no MOVE HERE AND LET YOUR SOLDIERS DIE BECAUSE SCRIPTING.
    Wait what? Skipping it means skipping it altogether, believe me I did skip it in full game all 27 times that took me to complete the game on Classic Ironman, it starts with a random mission. But in demo you had no option to skip it, at least not without messing with ini-files. You had to play it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Drake Sigar View Post
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  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jnx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    Pretty much every single-player campaign for every RTS and FPS on the market nowadays is an extended tutorial for multiplayer.
    Well that's pretty much how RTS have been ever since Command and Conquer.
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  18. #18
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Drake Sigar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coldvvvave View Post
    Wait what? Skipping it means skipping it altogether, believe me I did skip it in full game all 27 times that took me to complete the game on Classic Ironman, it starts with a random mission. But in demo you had no option to skip it, at least not without messing with ini-files. You had to play it.
    You're really going to play that card? It's a demo.

    Skipping the tutorial in the base game was kinda tough because I think it means passing up a free satellite rewarded at the end. I just couldn't allow those three strange names on my honour board of death though.

  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coldvvvave View Post
    But in demo you had no option to skip it, at least not without messing with ini-files. You had to play it.
    But...

    Quote Originally Posted by Drake Sigar View Post
    You're really going to play that card? It's a demo.
    Well, you beat me to it.


    As an aside, I apologise you're right, you do get a random abduction mission. My memory was a bit hazy. But still complaining that you can't skip the tutorial mission when the entire point of the demo was pretty much just the tutorial plus a bit of bonus nonsense... that doesn't really seem valid.

  20. #20
    Lesser Hivemind Node internetonsetadd's Avatar
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    I rather liked XCOM's tutorial. Quick little shove-off. I missed the XO (or whatever he was) when he stopped talking to me as much. I would have enjoyed some additional chats from time to time.

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