Recently I’ve been playing Brutal Legend, and although it’s not the hardest game out there, I did find myself dying a lot. The weird thing is that dying, didn’t anger me. I accepted it. In Gears of War I kept fighting the last boss until the bugger would die, and it took a long time. Again, I wasn’t frustrated or angry. Finally in Final Fantasy XIII, while facing one of the hardest enemies during a side quest, I died, although I was 30 mins in this battle and i died from a cheap Doom spell, I wasn’t angry. “Alright” I thought, so I popped in Modern Warfare 2, and instantly my blood boiled and I woke up in an alley with blood all around me.
What the hell happened?
Then I played Scribblenauts and wanted to throw my DS out the window, not because I kept dying, but because I wasn’t doing what I wanted to.
So then I started thinking why do I accept things that should rage me in other games not affect me, but games like Scribblenauts and Modern Warfare 2 I want to eat a baby? I’ve come to realize it’s not because I’m dying it’s because It’s illogical, highly illogical in fact. Here are some of the reasons as to why we rage while playing video games.
Frustrating Controls/Bad Camera Angles:
While playing Scribblenauts, something as simple as grab fish put on hook, can make you want to rip your chest hair out. It’s because the controls are terrible, that in result creates the thing that is called frustration. It’s the repetitive experience that throws us over the edge. It bothers us even more when a simple task becomes the Holy Grail due to terrible controls. It is in the way the one of the many game rages occur. Mostly due to the fact that this is NOT YOUR FAULT. Same thing can be said for the Alone in the Dark remake. Not one of the worse game ever made, but a big disappointment due to the craptastic controls. Something as simple as break a wooden chair that is a on fire on a zombie that could be accomplished by a simple button is turned to an adventure on it’s own because (on the Xbox 360) you must move around the right analog stick to attack!
In Spiderman: Shattered Dimensions during a moment of web swinging and things exploding in the backround you have to web swing your way towards the camera. Meaning that the camera is stuck facing you while you have no idea of what’s coming your way. This is fine, it’s supposed to be intense, but what it’s not supposed to be is crappy. The web swinging aspect is the worst part of the game, when you press the web button it feels like it’s delayed and not only are you always grabbing the web at the last second but due to the crap camera your falling into obstacles that should otherwise be a breeze.
“What the hell?!” moments:
I’m talking about moments in gaming such as glitches, lag, unresponsive controllers and bizarre environments. Mirrors Edge is one of those games that bring “what the hell” moments the most when it comes due to environments. Thinking you have made a jump only to be way off and die is annoying. Trying to figure out what part of the map is part of the actual game, and what part is there for design purposes can really get confusing. For example trying to jump above a ledge thinking it will make progress and instead takes up a load of time because the way we’re supposed to go is a different direction, you’re not supposed to climb the big house and go on the roof, you’re supposed to duck under a barely visible hole in the fence, silly me. Modern Warfare 2 again, has a lot of moments like this where you can climb most hills or areas but some hills are just too steep for the soldiers..I suppose. Most online games will make you scream “What the hell” especially due to exploits of other players.
In Battlefield: Bad Company 2, while playing Rush you realize that you station has exploded and the match has just begun, you look on the score board and buddy what’s-his-nuts has a score of -1000. This means he’s blowing up your own station and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. You shoot him, you stab him and nothing happens. Then you tearfully send him a message saying “what the hell dude?” then he writes back “F**k your momma son!” that’s just hurtful…and weird.
We all love a good challenge. Sometimes when we die in a game or fail in a game we just usually start over and try and try again. While playing Gears of War 2 with a friend on the hardest difficulty setting, there was a moment where a fork in the road occurred. He takes the high road, and I take the low road. Before that there is a cutscene explaining where to go. The thing about this is that every other scene in the game is skippable but not these. So we see the minute long cutscene, then the game focuses on where we go. Make our choice. Game loads. Play game. Friend or I die. Do it again, and again and again. This was really frustrating and actually made us not want to play.
Another example is in Kingdom Hearts. After blowing the dust off my Playstation 2 I decided to play Kingdom Hearts again. I put this in and wondered how come I never finished the game a second time. As in Gears of War it had the same problem that is repeating an un-skippable cutscene before a hard battle. First you fight the first version of the boss, and then the second will instantly kill you. Game loads. Un-skippable 2 minute cut scene, fight first boss. Die. Unskippable cutscene, first boss. Die. Remember why you stopped playing and stop playing.
Out of Your Hands Moments
Now what I mean are moments that happen in the game that result in you failing due to something else that happened that is out of your hands. Let me explain…
While playing Resident Evil 5 on hard. Sheva and I are at the moment where guys start clubbing you with electric prods. “I can dig it” I say, because the game has been hell thus far. Unfortunately these guys like to corner Sheva and not me, so she dies, game is over. Out of my hands. In result I yell at my TV.
While playing Dead Rising there is nothing like trying to:
A) Play the game and
B) Play the game and actually try to save the survivors.
Unfortunately the survivors rather run into a pack of zombies gleefully then follow Frank West. When you have 5 survivors on one side of the mall and you must take them to the safe house, crap will hit the fan. Jenny will get attacked by zombies, Bill will be asking for help, John will need you to hold his hand, and Barbara will be running into a wall. All this is out of your hands, you’ve done your part of gathering them and protecting them as much as possible the rest is up to them.
So there are some of the reason as to why we game rage, I’m sure there are more, but for now that is all I can think of. We love video games and it’s not only a hobby for us it keeps us entertained and social. When someone hears us screaming outside and wonders why we are screaming only to find out we are in fact screaming at a video game, and evidence of punching a wall shows up. Show them this list and they will understand.
We get frustrated due to cruddy controllers, if someone doesn’t understand just say it’s like pressing the “on” button on their TV and its not working. It should work and it’s not, it’s pretty frustrating. For “what the hell” moments imagine saying that during a baseball game, the ball was clearly a Home Run but yet was counted as a foul. For un-skippable cutscenes show them a random 45 second clips on you tube and tell them to hold their breath for 3 minutes after. When they go to take a breath, show the clip again and again and again. Then ask them if they are annoyed.
Lastly for out of your hand moments, tell them to imagine watching a movie on DVD and during the most important part the DVD skips the scene and there is nothing they can do about it. Hopefully by then they will understand our game rage and hopefully they too will see the light.
What games do you get frustrated in and why?
Leave a comment below!