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Disappointments, Bad Ideas and Wasted Potential

Discussion in 'General Video Game Discussion' started by KoL, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. KoL

    KoL FPS Guy
    Staff Member Moderator

    As the title suggests, this is a topic for those games you played that weren't "bad" per se, but ultimately fell far short of your expectations in such a way that it left you wanting to scream "but if you'd just done X then it would have been fine!!"

    For me quite a few games have ended up in my possession that had all the potential in the world to be amazing, but one or two bad ideas, or badly executed ideas, ultimately caused them to be merely "OK" or just "good," and ultimately left me overwhelmed with disappointment over what could have been.

    For games to really come under this, they shouldn't be full-on bad games that were just complete disasters. They have to have done quite a lot right, but made a few critical mistakes that made the games good, but horribly disappointing when they could have been phenomenal. Bonus points if the mistake was something ridiculously simple. Here's my Top 5 for you:

    5. Pokemon Black/White probably seems like a surprising addition to this, but remember that this is about good games with one or two stupid problems. The key problem in this case is (you probably guessed it) the horribly restricted Wi-Fi options for battling, made especially stupid by the fact that HG/SS's Wi-Fi offered everything players needed while B/W did not. A second issue I've had with B/W is how much of a pain it is to EV train in Unova - HG/SS was absolutely perfect for EV training, and Nintendo has to be aware that people do this sort of thing since they've provided in-game items to help the process, so why does B/W have to make such a nightmarish pain out of itself if I dare try to EV train anything besides Attack? As much as Gen V added to the games in terms of content, I can't help but feel it's still a step backwards compared to HG/SS for these reasons alone, but it only gets Rank 5 since the third game in the trilogy will likely rectify these problems anyway.

    4. World of Warcraft: Cataclysm has been responsible for me making fun of Deathwing's lower jaw long after I stopped playing the game, but in all honesty I would have liked to have seen Deathwing's chin in-game more often. Why? Because it would have meant seeing more of Deathwing. He WAS the main antagonist of the game after all, yet all he did throughout most of Cataclysm was occasionally set stuff on fire, appear in a few quests for a brief moment, and then die at the end of the game. What, that's it? What happened to the Lich King showing up to remind everyone that he was the almighty big bad of the game and that he was unstoppable? Why didn't Deathwing do something similar instead of just randomly setting places on fire? Ultimately his lack of involvement in the story combined with the story being rather lacklustre anyway (Deathwing's son is resurrected. NOBODY IN THE GAME mentions this,) really made Cataclysm become rather dull to me, and by the time Firelands had rolled around I'd quit the game out of sheer boredom. There's more problems than just the aforementioned with Cataclysm's story progression, but Deathwing's lack of involvement was by far the biggest issue.

    3. Super Smash Bros. Brawl could have, and should have been better than Melee was. Why? Because all it needed to do was add more characters, more music and better graphics. For whatever unfathomably mystifying reason though, it was decided that Brawl's combat system would be completely overhauled. OK, I know the reason, it was to make Brawl more accessible to casual players. Problems? Well first of all, Melee already was accessible to casual players, hell of all the people I knew that played the game (about 100) only two of them played Melee competitively, so there was no point in this overhaul at all since Melee's combat system was fine as it was. Secondly, this overhaul was probably responsible for both the repeated delays of the game and ultimately the glitch-ridden mess we received when Brawl came out. OK, maybe that was a bit unfair, I mean Brawl's a glitch-ridden mess I have a lot of affection for, but this game should have been better than Melee, and it wasn't. Hell, it was significantly worse than Melee was, the "casual changes" only made the combat slower and encouraged people to camp/projectile-spam more, on top of the aforementioned horrible glitches which in Melee were very few and far between, and had little to no detrimental effect on the gameplay. Fanboys will likely rage at me for this, but seriously, who even plays Brawl anymore? Even casual players were playing Melee right up until Brawl's release, so that alone should say it all. Brawl could have been amazing if it was simply Melee 2.0, but it wasn't Melee 2.0 at all and it certainly wasn't amazing either.

    2. Metroid Other M. Just...Metroid Other M. The characterization and story in this game were both horrible to say the least, and it's blatantly obvious that gameplay was sacrificed to make the story better, and even then they just made it worse anyway. This probably makes Other M seem atrocious, and to be honest it's not - the music, environments and gameplay are all pretty good, albeit not on par with the Prime series by a wide margin. The problem is that it just doesn't feel like I'm playing as Samus, rather as some overly wangst-ridden blonde chick wearing Samus's power suit. The problem I have with Other M is simply this: they wanted to give Samus a personality. What they failed to realize is that the other games already did that in their own way; they let the players themselves effectively piece together a personality for her based on the way she acted in the games, and while she showed very little emotion in those games and spoke even less, it simply gave the impression that she was a stoic, hardened bounty hunter whose entire life revolved around fighting and war. So...why did she need to be given a personality again? Seems to me like she already sort-of had one, which just makes Other M seem like a gigantic plot hole. Just for further disgrace, Yoshio Sakamoto actually stated that Other M "could not have been done better" by the time it was released. Uh, you mean besides the fact that EVERY aspect of Other M could have been done better and had already been done better by the three Prime games, which are apparently now non-canon to make up for Other M's story creating a massive plot-hole? Sorry, but if I'm to pretend any of the Metroid games didn't exist, I'm picking Other M.

    1. Final Fantasy X-2 gets the top spot for one simple reason: the two things it should have done were so insanely simple. Step 1: remove any and all association from Final Fantasy X, and then Step 2: rename yourself Final Fantasy XI. My single biggest issue with X-2 isn't the fanservice, or the drastic change of tone from the rest of the series, hell it certainly has nothing to do with the gameplay, which was extremely good. It was just the fact that Final Fantasy X should never have had a direct sequel. For one thing, the way FFX ended wrapped that story up so tightly that just the idea of a sequel seemed completely implausible. Secondly, the story we did get was so disconnected from the apocalyptic dread that surrounded FFX's story that the change of tone was just jarring to the point that FFX-2's story felt like a bad fanfiction. In the end, I tried to like FFX-2, but I just couldn't because it felt so wrong being FFX's sequel and it ruined the entire game for me. So, yeah...FFX-2 should have been FFXI instead, same gameplay, different location and characters, all problems are solved, not to mention it would have removed the atrocious MMO FFXI from existence too...also, FFX-2's ultimate goal was to find Tidus again. Remind me why ANY sane human being would want this fucktard back? Like I said, shouldn't have been a direct sequel.
     
  2. Doctor Oak

    Staff Member Overlord

    Soul Calibur 5. All you had to do was add a traditional arcade mode at the very least. But, really, there's NO single player content in this game outside of the roughshod attempt at a 'story mode' - which is a joke compared to what Mortal Kombat managed to fantastically achieve.

    In the same vein, Marvel vs Capcom 3. It should have been a great game, but the gameplay is too fast and frantic to be anything more than a button-masher and the story mode we were promised (and could have been really good if they used the same graphical style as the intro to do it) just didn't happen at all. Again, no single player content in favour of forcing you to play with snotty 13 year old Americans who seem to believe insulting people's mothers is the point of the game. (No, ta).
     
  3. Linkachu

    Linkachu Hero of Pizza
    Staff Member Administrator

    Friend Code:
    4167-4498-1464
    I seem to be unable to think of many games for this thread, but one KoL already mentioned largely stands out for me.

    Hardcore. It's not often that a game I consider a favourite is also one I'm incredibly frustrated with, but Black & White fit that profile. Many of my grievances center around the same issue KoL has with them: their online sucks. It should've been the best service yet, and being able to trade directly from your PC was a wonderful idea. This just makes it even more of a shame that you can hardly ever successfully connect with anyone. I've actually been turned off online trading for this fact alone. Then of course there's the removal of Level 50/100 All which just made no sense. The rule is "don't fix it if it ain't broken", eh? But no, Game Freak decided to make unnecessary changes for whatever reason. The Flat Rules are great when you want them, but they shouldn't be all you have to regulate levels. Such a waste.

    I might as well add that Unova as a region is a bit disappointing too. It has some beautiful locations and great additions over previous regions, but why are some of the routes so damn short? It seems like they become progressively shorter the deeper you travel into the region. Isn't it supposed to be the other way around? While a third game in the collection will hopefully solve the online issues, the region itself can't really be fixed. It was just a poor design choice overall, for my tastes at least.
     
  4. Yoshimitsu

    Former Moderator

    The routes in B/W didn't bother me as much as the cities. After a certain point, the cities are devoid of anything apart from a gym, a pokemon centre and maybe a house or two. It was like the developers just went, "Okay, can anyone be bothered designing these to make them interesting? No? No one? Alright, just throw in the basics and call it a day". Sure, the sheer size of areas like Twist Mountain technically makes up for it, but I'm the person who enjoys running around talking to random NPCs and the sheer lack of them in later cities was a real blow.

    Also a lot of the post-E4 content was dull in comparison to the main quest, which wasn't exactly fantastic in itself.
     
  5. But thats actually the point of the game. Soul Calibur has always been an arcade game series.
    Mortal Kombat is an exception when its about single player content and the series quality suffered from that for more than a decade with only MK9 picking up the ball again.


    Anyways.
    I'm not getting disappointed often because I usually pick out games that I'm sure will deliver what I want. I often actually go in with lowered expectations and get positive surprises all the time.
    But of course there are some games that disappointed me.

    World of Warcraft Cataclysm:
    The second half of the expansion was made with so little effort that this post here alone dwarfs the work put into it in comparison.
    Kinda sad because it started so good. It was challenging and well crafted but the players didnt like actually playing the game and started quitting because they couldnt faceroll through the content so the devs adjusted to that and made it all easy and half assed.


    Soul Calibur V: Kinda funny because I just defended the game in this very same post, but there is stuff that grinds my gears.
    I was completely aware of it because I usually absorb all the info I can when its about new fighting games but the current roster is really small. Not only is it small but we got THREE sword&board users. On top of that one of them is just a way better version of another one that makes one of them completely useless.
    I know that this game was glued together in 1 year only and considering that its actually very well done, but a fighting game lives off the VS aspect and for that you need characters for people to express their own gameplay style. My main didnt get replaced but they removed one of his stances which also annoys me.

    Another thing that rustles my jimmies is how they replaced many old cast members with younger characters and messed with the movesets.
    So I guess this goes to the "wasted potential" category.

    Basically any Pokemon Arena game that isnt Pokemon Stadium 1 or 2: They keep on removing more and more features and the last game they released was basically just Pokemon online for Wii with half assed models and very slow gameplay while also charging people for games like farm, stuff that was already part of the N64 games and handled in a way better way. I remember clearly that back then I was able to trade full boxes in a very short time.

    Mighty Switch Force: Too short for the money paid. Grafics, engine and music are totally wasted on a game that is so short.
    With smart recycling they would have been able to push out many more levels.

    Dark Souls:There isnt a sequel out yet.

    My PS2: I cant find my wireless controller.

    The Bouncer (PS2): Got it for 5€ expecting little and thats exactly what I got. 1,5hours storymode for a brawler is less than what I got in NES days.
    Without the cinematics its most likely 1 hour of actual gameplay. I even died a couple of times.

    I think thats enough or a start.


    Also:
    FFX-2 should have been about Braskas pilgrimage instead. With Jecht and Auron. FFX already delivers the perfect background for that and their journey was being referenced all the time.
     
  6. KoL

    KoL FPS Guy
    Staff Member Moderator

    So basically FFX-2 should have been identical to FFX except with different characters?

    As interesting as Braska's story was, no thanks. FFX should have just been left alone completely.
     
  7. Yoshimitsu

    Former Moderator

    ^ This.

    X-2 was a pretty good game in its own right, and though I did have some issues with the main reason Yuna became a sphere hunter being shoved to one side and ignored unless you have a guide up, I thoroughly enjoy playing it. However, I agree with KoL about it. Slap new characters in, ditch the connection to X and making it a game in its own right probably would have resulted in a lot less backlash from the fans.

    I must admit though, I did like the character development of Yuna and Paine that happened during X-2, though it wasn't quite enough to make up for Brother's infuriating voice and incestuous advances =|
     
  8. I'm surprised nobody has mentioned this yet...

    The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

    This really let me down. You had no idea how excited I was for this. It was the first console Zelda since 2006, and Twilight Princess is one of my favourite games of all time, so naturally, I could not wait. And how dissapointed I was when I played it. The tutorial was shit boring, it took ages to catch the bloody golden bird. I just wanted to slice up some Moblins. I was granted the ability to do this later. This leads on to my second irk.

    THOSE. FUCKING. SWORD. CONTROLS.

    I have never been so frustrated with a single aspect of a game. And I've played Superman 64. The swings of the sword are laggy and unresponsive, weak enemies can block sword swings far too easily, the game lacks a lock-on attack, but my biggest complaint is that Wii MotionPlus is required. You have to use these conrols, and you cannot go back to the simple "hack 'n' slash" method of Twilight Princess, which I, personally, enjoyed. While the variety of different swings was limited, the response was sharp, it was incredably easy to use, and it was generally satisfying to watch Link cut up his enimies with precision. Nintendo, however, obviously did not like this way of killing, opting for the slow, lethargic MotionPlus controls. It really annoys me when producers deny players different control options.

    I have some minor complaints, too. Some of the bosses are so... easy. I let my 4 year old cousin, who can barely colour between the lines, try the 2nd boss, and he beat it with ease. It took him about a minute to figure out how to bring the boss to it's knees. It also annoys me that Nintendo took Ganondorf/Ganon, one of the most badass villains from any franchise ever, out of the game, and replace him with this generic bishi-like character, and say he's different because he isnt Ganondorf/Ganon.

    SPOILERS

    And another thing I have just realised, one simple sentence changed the Zeldaverse COMPLETELY. When Demise places the curse of an eternal persuer, a personification of his hatred, on Link and Zelda. That completely destroyed any thoughts of developing Ganondorf/Ganon's character. Wind Waker did wonders for his persona, making him like a rational human being, but that was blown away by that moment. Now, no matter what Ganondorf does, no matter how he feels, no matter what he says, he'll always be evil. He can never be good, because he is just hate personified. This also applies to Link. No matter what happens, it will always be Link who saves the day. That is just a completely BULLSHIT excuse to get out of giving the iconic characters, well, any character, and that, quite frankly, PISSES ME OFF. The amount of respect I have for Nintendo has dropped significantly, and I hope to God they don't pull a dick move like this again, or the Zelda series will have lost a fan and a customer.

    END OF SPOILERS

    Don't get me wrong, I really like the other aspects of the game. I'm a big fan of the graphic style used, the dungeons are innovative and origninal, but the bad outweighs the good.

    This game was in development for the longest time in the Zelda series. This game should have been the best ever Zelda, a monumental milestone in video game history, the benchmark for all that it proceeded. But it wasnt. It's an extremely average game, with good graphics and puzzles, but awful controls, and a "plot twist" that, unless Nintendo can pull of some kind of storytelling masterclass, could stop any Zelda in the future from having substantial plot.

    And with that, I bid you good day.
     
  9. I have quite afew:

    Pokemon Battle Revolution
    With FACTOR 5 shut down, The Pokemon Stadium games were no more. So when Nintendo made a new Wii pkmn arena game AND THEN MARKETED AS ANOTHER POKEMON STADIUM, I was stoked!...
    ...Then i actually played it
    It was boring, slow, and very repetitive. my only incentive to keep playing was to watch my 4th gen pokemon in 3D. There were also no minigames or gym leaders to keep me occupied. Such a waste of potential.

    Duke Nukem Forever
    Having a friend who's cousin worked on the game, I was obligated to play it. I was sorely disappointed. After 15 years in the works, you'd think it would have great graphics and gameplay. Instead, it was an average FPS with Duke as a memento that we aren't in the 90's anymore. Everything he said made me groan. Plus, I will never know why they switched from carrying all the weapons at once to just two, which could have been it's saving grace.

    Metal Gear Solid 2
    Raiden, enough said. Sure, it was a good game, but replacing EVERY level raiden was going to play in with Snake in the trailers and emphasizing the 1st hour of the game was not cool.
     
  10. Doctor Oak

    Staff Member Overlord

    Factor 5 never had anything to do with any Pokemon game, ever. I have no idea why you think they have any bearing on Stadium or battle revolution at all.
     
  11. Sorry, I was thinking back to a video that mentioned that Factor 5 made the sound effects for Pokemon Stadium games (like the pokemon cries and attack noises.)
     
  12. The big disappointment for me this season has been Mass Effect 3's ending. The game is superb, but the ending was literally written by executive decision and is generally infuriating. I won't spend time rehashing the many, many hours of thought and analysis that are posted all over the web, but the biggest element of disappointment for me was the fact that my choices had no effect on how the ending played out. I put hours and hours into assembling the biggest possible fleet and it meant nothing. Weak, Bioware.

    I was a little disappointed with Skyward Sword as well. For a long time, my favorite Zelda game was Ocarina of Time, because, well, Ocarina of Time. But it's starting to fall in esteem for me because I feel like Nintendo has been trying to remake it for the past few games. :/ I sort of feel like I prefer Majora's Mask (and I thought I was being original but actually this is the popular opinion on Reddit >.>;;; ) because it was different. It took risks. I want another Zelda game that takes a risk.

    I didn't mind Skyward Sword too much but it didn't really do anything for me either. It was just there. But if there's one thing that pisses me off about it, it's that it establishes Link, Zelda and Ganondorf as being shackled to their archetypes, destined to battle one another for all time, immortals locked in unceasing combat until the end of days. Wind Waker (another one that is starting to pull ahead of Ocarina on my list of favorites) humanized Ganondorf somewhat, but they really threw away that characterization for Skyward Sword.

    The whole thing really made me long for another risky game that doesn't follow the formula-- in fact, I started to brainstorm an idea for a fanfic, "LoZ: In Defiance of Destiny", or some other cheesy title. The three subvert their usual roles: Zelda is the warrior of Hyrule, Ganondorf a skinny thief with magical talent, and Link a tinkering engineer, embracing his many gadgets instead of the sword. If it was a game, you'd be able to switch between playing as any one of the three characters and use their abilities to get past puzzles and stuff.

    But anyway, that's just me making a long ramble.
     
  13. I've got some new ones since the te last time I posted:

    Final Fantasy XIII-2
    There is truly no reason for this game to exist. NO one asked for it, although it was Square's apology letter for FFXIII for being way too linear. And in that respect, FFXIII-2 did great. It was open and grand, with ton of side quests...unfortunately, at the cost of the story. The story is possibly the worst in Final Fantasy history (next to FFIII) relying on convienant time paradoxes and time elements with sciency words thrown around for no reason. If they could have kept the gameplay and questing the same with a good story, it could have been amazing.
     
  14. HOLY BALLS THAT WOULD BE AMAZING

    On a side note, good, I'm glad someone agrees with me. I have never had the pleasure of playing either Majora's Mask or Wind Waker (although I know the stories; I like spoilers). I am actually in the process of buying Wind Waker now, so this shall soon be rectified.
     

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