If you click on a link and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Read our editorial policy.

What's better: Setting unit waypoints or receiving waypoints yourself?

Vote now!

Last time, you decided that capturing enemy buildings is better than hand grenades exploding on impact with enemies?. Can't say I disagree. I love a good frag but what's even better is capturing your munitions factory and using that to make more grenades to throw at you. Doesn't matter if I need to time or cook them if I have an entire production line behind me. This week, I ask you to decide who's the boss (baby). What's better: setting unit waypoints or receiving waypoints yourself?

Setting unit waypoints

Look, mate, I'm begging you: don't saunter towards the machinegun nest. Don't walk up to the machinegun nest and don't take the route past their base. And don't enter that maze which is clearly a trap. And don't cross that border because it'll cause trouble. And don't... just... hang on, let me drop a few waypoints to guide you.

It's great. That's all. It's great. Whether I'm simply shift-clicking points in order or dragging out routes, this is all I want. Perfect. Easy. Love it.

Receiving waypoints yourself

Go here. Go there. Do that. This thing is here. It... can be a lot. It can be patronising. It can be loathsome. But it can be great.

Video games are simple simulations of very specific things. It's rare to have anywhere near as much freedom and agency as you would in the real world. They are built from constraints, and what they do within that is what's interesting. But it can be confusing. Most games largely follow their genres because these are so familiar to most players that you can slip right in without thinking. You don't need to discover what a game even as you start playing (which: I will say, I do adore having to figure out what a game is). But there are quirks. There are odd bits. Sometimes, when a game is largely built from familiar pieces but throws in one or two new ones without properly flagging or explaining them. One-off objectives, or barriers the game usually wouldn't let me past, or walls I couldn't usually climb, or backtracking in a game which has always been pushing forwards, or... this is often more frustrating than surprising or delightful. So sure, throw me some waypoints.

Also, sometimes it's nice to not get lost because I wasn't paying attention.

I do like when games have optional waypoint guidance. Sure, sure, stumble about and poke around and get lost as much as you want. Go wild. Have a ball. Find a ball. But if you forget what you were doing or just want a nudge, hit to a key and you'll be guided to your objective by little markers, a glowing trail, or maybe a friendly hoverorb. Some games cloak this in-universe as intuition or magic spells (like Clairvoyance in Skyrim) while others just want to help. I used it in the Quake 2 remaster's new expansion only the other week after getting turned-around deep in a machine. Lovely.

But which is better?

I'm the boss (baby), I decide the waypoints! But what do you think, reader dear?

Pick your winner, vote in the poll below, and make your case in the comments to convince others. We'll reconvene next week to see which thing stands triumphant—and continue the great contest.

Rock Paper Shotgun is the home of PC gaming

Sign in and join us on our journey to discover strange and compelling PC games.

Related topics
About the Author
Alice O'Connor avatar

Alice O'Connor

Associate Editor

Alice has been playing video games since SkiFree and writing about them since 2009, with nine years at RPS. She enjoys immersive sims, roguelikelikes, chunky revolvers, weird little spooky indies, mods, walking simulators, and finding joy in details. Alice lives, swims, and cycles in Scotland.