Have you ever been annoyed by a game? Maybe you were angry because you paid a load of money for it, and it turned out to be bad. Or perhaps the gameplay itself was just so badly designed that it seriously pissed you off?
Whatever the situation, and whatever the reason, we're interested in hearing about it as we ask you to reveal the game that annoyed you the most. While you have a ponder on that question, here's the USgamer team with their own tales of woe, frustration, and irritation.
You may recall me saying that I was hooked on Madden Ultimate Team. Yeah, that didn't last very long.
Here are a few things I learned after some extended time with the mode. First, it really is "pay to win." If you're not prepared to invest in Legends Packs and other specials, you're in for a long grind. One of the solo challenges involves beating all 32 teams at the highest difficulty level. Another involves playing through dozens of challenges, most of which boil down to, "Drive down the field and win in the last two minutes." Sniping cards in the Auction House and reselling them for more money - the core of the game for many people - is also a grind of sorts, requiring that you spend long periods of time shifting through auctions and staring at countdowns.
When you're in the middle of it, it's kind of a drag but not too horrible. What really makes it intolerable is the horrible user interface - a Madden staple. When you complete one of the aforementioned challenges, for example, you can just move on to the next one. You have to complete the game, exit out, then choose the next one. And if you fail the challenge, you can't just retry it. You have to exit out and re-select the challenge.
The clunky interface harms the overall experience in other ways as well. If you want to put a player in the auction house, you have to first go into the lineup and manually remove it. The menus are also really slow. There's a lot of basic quality of life stuff missing from MUT, and when all is said, there's no real sense of accomplishment. All you can say is, "Hey, I've got a lot of really good cards.
I eventually got to the point where I had a decent 85 overall team with some okay elite teams, but I just didn't have the time and energy to grind through every single one of the challenges. It's not a bad idea, but when it gets down to it, the interface and the balance of cards makes it an intolerable grind for anyone who doesn't want to waste money on virtual card packs.
Even at the tender age of nine, I knew licensed games were no good. But my unbreakable attachment to The Simpsons—then in its second season—meant I at least had to give Bart Vs. The Space Mutants a try. And while I'm sure other games could have irritated me more, this one stands out for how its few promising qualities completely vanish after the first level.
The opening of Space Mutants, which takes place on the streets of Springfield, tasks Bart with covering or changing the colors of purple objects, seeing as the incredibly-off-model Space Mutants need them for some nefarious plot. In an unexpected move, disposing of or disguising these objects involves some light adventure game mechanics: You have to use a coin and prank call Moe's Tavern so he runs out with his purple apron, use a wrench on a hydrant to clear a wall of wet purple paint, and so on. The controls aren't great, but Space Mutants presents a reactive world built around Bart's reputation as a troublemaker. Apparently, the developers put some care into making this game—a pretty unlikely scenario for licensed stuff.
I'm not sure what happened during development: Maybe they ran out of time, or money, or just realized they didn't have to care that much. But once Bart is dumped into the second level, from then on, the game is just a sheer collect-a-thon, with no interesting twist on collecting the necessary objects in each stage. The result is an abysmal experience that feels like Activision's equally crappy Ghostbusters 2 NES game: enemies and platforms placed thoughtlessly, creating a frustrating gauntlet of pain. No matter how many times I threw myself at that second level, I could never finish it, and it wasn't until the Internet Age that I finally discovered this was probably for the best. If Space Mutants was just bad all-around, it wouldn't be remembered. But the false promise presented by the first level—causing me to die over and over in the hopes of seeing more like it—makes The Simpsons' first NES game truly irritating.
I don't know why Banjo-Kazooie got under my skin so badly, but my god did I hate that game almost right away. Between the twee, cutesy designs, the idiot babble of the characters, the endless and pointless collection element of the game, and the bumbling control scheme, it was hate at first sight. And I was so stoked for the game right up until the moment I played it, too! It seemed really promising, and I'd heard nothing but good about it… but the instant it booted up, it was nails on the chalkboard of my soul. I actually have nothing more to add here; I hated everything about the game so much that I barely played it. It's probably a good game, but the whole thing was just intolerable.
Man. So many games have annoyed me over the years. It's a hazard of reviewing them for a living. Yeah. I know. Wah-wah. It's a tough life reviewing games, but I'm not really complaining – just talking about those certain situations where you have to play a really tough, crappy game and ensure that you've seen enough of it to be able to write an accurate review. After all, if you're going to slate a game for being bad, you'd better play all of it to make sure that something at the end doesn't somehow redeem it all.
Anyway, I digress, because when I really think about it, the game that annoyed me the most goes back to before I was a reviewer, and indeed was just a teenager. Back then, I was an obsessive and aggressive player, and notched up quite a few record scores on various arcade games. Something that drove my compulsion was a fierce temper. When I lost a life, I'd get really frustrated and would channel my anger into my next life. This worked most of the time, and would fire me up and help me sustain a high quality level of play for hours on end. However, sometimes when I wasn't on form and lost several lives in a row, my anger could get the better of me, and I'd end up yelling obscenities, punching the machine or, if I was at home, bashing the joystick or throwing it across the room. Yeah. I was a hothead to put it mildly.
One evening I was at home playing a game I'd just bought for my new ZX Spectrum computer. It was called Arcadia, and was created by Imagine Software, a then pretty solid software company that produced some decent-quality titles. Unfortunately, Arcadia wasn't one of them. It was a simple shoot 'em up that mixed elements of Space Invaders with Galaxians, and it was damn frustrating. As I attempted to play through it, cheap deaths came thick and fast, and my blood pressure began to rise. Unfortunately, because I was playing using the keyboard, I didn't have a joystick to hurl across the room or bang on the floor, and after one particularly heinous death, I bashed the top of the computer in anger. I didn't even think about it, I was just so mad at yet another cheap death. But nanoseconds later, my anger turned to regret as the computer crashed in spectacular fashion.
I pulled the power cord from my Speccy, and tried to turn it back on, and nothing happened. The computer was dead. Well and truly gone. I tried repeatedly to fire the thing up, but no dice. What the hell was I going to do? I'd saved a ton of money for the machine, and it was clearly completely broken.
Fortunately, I did find a fix. I carefully removed the computer's dented fascia and straightened it out, packaged the machine up and sent it back to Sinclair, saying that the computer had died. Which was true. They sent me back a new one, no questions asked. I remember it turning up and feeling so, so lucky that I'd gotten a replacement for free. Since then, I've hurled many joypads and joysticks in anger, but I've never done anything as silly as break a computer over an annoying game.
Metal Gear Solid 2 was the game that made me break up with Hideo Kojima's magnum opus.
That's right, I haven't played a Metal Gear Solid game since 2001. I've vaguely kept up with story and gameplay developments to see if there's anything I've been missing, but up until Metal Gear Solid V, I've been fine. I don't hate the series of anything, I just disliked one game to the point that I never looked back.
I feel like I've related this story before, but it's worth repeating. One night during college, I was playing Metal Gear Solid 2 and I was moving along at a pretty solid pace. You know how you can kinda tell when you're entering the endgame of a story-based title? The events that were happening in MGS2 made it feel like the ending was in sight. It was around 10pm and I felt that if I just pushed forward a little, I'd probably be done the game. I had class in the morning, but if I was right, I'd be done soon.
Fast-forward to 6am and that absolute nonsense of an ending. And not the ending itself, the entire final sequence of the game is just characters randomly pontificating. A lot of people disliked Raiden, but I honestly never had an issue with the character. But after pushing through everything, to end my experience in the dead of the morning of MGS 2's treatise on war, memes, the Patriots, and the S3 Plan was not the best look for the game. That's probably the most annoyed I've ever been at a game.
I turned off the game, went to class with no sleep, and never played Metal Gear Solid 2 again.