By Louise Yang . January 11, 2009 . 8:01am
Gaming has come a long way since two paddles and a ball. With so many different aspects to gaming, there’s bound to be favorites and not-so-favorites. What is your biggest gaming pet peeve?
Jenni: I’m tired of companies that go overboard, trying to add in motion controls to every Wii game just because they can. I can understand that the Wii remote and nunchuk are unique, and can understand that developers would want to create control schemes that utilize the motion sensing capabilities, but it isn’t always necessary. Take Family Party: 30 Great Games – had it had a normal control scheme, it would have been fun. Since it relied on overcomplicated motion controls, it isn’t. Even the Wii Cooking Mama games could get frustrating, due to the over-reliance on sometimes fickle motion controls.
If a game with exaggerated motion controls is released and doesn’t add in optional standard controls, then I’m really hesitant to play it.
Spencer: Overextending games. It’s nice to have long games, but not every needs to be a 100+ hour journey. I think developers feel obligated to make a $50 or $60 game at least twenty hours long so they end up throwing in fetch quests or have players backtrack to far away places. Padding a game to make it longer makes it weaker. This is bad for the developers since players never get the full experience if they put the game down in the middle due to unnecessary repetition. In the case of many games the best stuff like plot twists, tough boss battles, the things you remember and share on message boards climax near the end.
I understand why developers have to stuff boring missions in retail games, though. If a game is too short people will rent it or sell it back to Gamestop quickly. Speaking from a business perspective it’s best to keep the game in people’s hands or on their shelves as long as possible to avoid cannibalizing sales. This is one reason why downloadable games are a nice option most of them short and sweet.
Louise: Time limits! I hated them in the 80s with Super Mario Brothers, and I still hate them now. I like exploring levels and taking my leisurely time before getting to the exit. Life already has too many deadlines; I don’t need them in my games too. It’s just too stressful to play a game with a countdown timer reminding you how close you are to ‘Game Over.’
I was reminded of this pet peeve recently when playing Spelunker! I was having a blast exploring every corner of the first floor when the music started getting fast and strange. A few seconds later, a ghost appeared on the left side of my screen and started coming after my spelunker. Next thing I knew, I was staring at the main menu.
Speeding through a level leaves behind so many undiscovered treasures that I always have to dock points from a game with time limits. It seems like a lazy developer’s way of adding challenge to the game. I wish that games with time limits would just get rid of the limits or put them as a separate option for players who enjoy speed-runs and time-trials. I just want to mosey along the level at my own pace.