Weekend Hot Topic, part 2: The angriest you’ve been at a video game

Readers reveal the most annoyed they’ve ever got with a video game, from Dark Souls to Pro Evolution Soccer.

The subject for this week’s Hot Topic was suggested by reader Clambake, and asked why exactly you got so upset and whether you felt justified to do so? Did you break anything, or hurt anyone, as a result and what were the repercussions?

The anger-inducing games were evenly split between old and retro, but the two main reasons were consistent for both eras: unfairly high difficulty and unavoidable bugs.

The current norm
I can give you a very recent example for this and, as far as I’m concerned a totally justifiable one. I was playing Returnal, all the way from the mid-point start to the final biome, I was just coming up to what I think was the ending and there was a loud screeching noise followed by the screen freezing it up. It had crashed. It had crashed on my best ever go and after four hours of playing.

I won’t pretend things ended in violence, because I was too shocked for that. By the time I’d realised I just wasted four hours of my life I was just too numb to properly react. I didn’t go back this time though. I’ve bene holding off to the new patch that was released on Thursday but I still haven’t tried it yet. I swear, if anything like that happens again I really will explode.

Releasing broken video games has got to stop, especially for games like this where you lose everything from a crash. It’s ridiculous that that this has become commonplace and there’s actually very little hope of it ever changing.
Taylor Moon

Angry bugs
Broken, buggy games annoy me, although at least now they can be fixed by patches. Back on the PlayStation 2 trying to play Tomb Raider: Angel Of Darkness was a very annoying experience. There was a walk button to stop Lara falling off ledges, but she kept falling off. If she died she’d scream continually even after she’d respawned, the list goes on and on!

Escort mission can annoy me too if they’re not done right. Resident Evil 4 masters this, sure Ashley is a screaming irritant but at least she stays where you tell her to, compared to Tripp in Enslaved: Odyssey To The West who kept wandering into trouble!

My biggest annoyance over the years though must be difficulty in games. I’m not the greatest gamer and I’ll admit to playing games on easy, just to enjoy them without the stress. I have got better with this though now I’m older and will return to a game I enjoy and take on the harder difficulties, albeit with a lot of swearing!

Spec Ops: The Line was the worst on FUBAR difficulty (extremely well named!) as your highly trained military squad suddenly behaved like they were brain dead! Running into the thick of battle, standing out of cover, getting shot to pieces and if you don’t revive them it’s mission over but if you try to get to them you get killed! Not fun!
LastYearsModel

Not quite right
It is a bit of a pain when a game that is obviously good (if not great) has an annoyance that causes you to throw the controller from the window… or at least uninstall the game. For me this usually happens with indies. I generally love the smaller more focused experiences on offer and find they usually capture the essence of gaming better than the bloated open worlds ‘experiences’ we are plagued with today. However, given they usually set out to just do a few old school things well I find even recognised classics sometimes too annoying if one aspect just doesn’t seem quite right.

The one that comes to mind is Monster Boy And The Cursed Kingdom. The game is obviously great, in presentation, design, charm… it nails it all. Except, for me, one thing. The hit box detection, which I found absolutely infuriating. So much so I ended up reading multiple reviews of the game to see if anyone else picked up on it or if I was just going crazy (it was mentioned in some but rarely marked down for it).

I was happy to roll with it for the first few hours but around the Volcano section, that relies on pixel perfect platforming and enemy strikes, I just couldn’t play the game any longer. Every now and then I’ll think ‘Am I being too harsh?’ and redownload it, try again and uninstall it an hour later. I’m even thinking of doing that again now! Maddeningly I think it’s deliberately like that, as that style of platformer back on the Mega Drive and SNES controlled in a similar fashion.

At least there isn’t a shortage of other Metroidvania’s to play through.
Marc

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Never again
I hesitate to repeat this because I’m not suggesting it’s funny but I actually broke my brother’s nose while playing PES. He was beating me so bad, and being so obnoxious about it, then in a fit of rage I just lashed out and ended up hitting him on the nose.

Needless to say my parents did not take well to that, and one confiscated console later we were both feeling pretty bad about things. To be fair he did apologise and it was all a big mistake but I like to think it was some kind of life lesson because I’ve never got that angry again.
Anon

Never again
A few games have really irritated me: in the 8 and 16-bit days I routinely pulled cartridges from consoles in a huff without powering down(!), presumably to punish the console for disrespecting its human master or something.

But the most annoyed I’ve been with a game was with WWF WrestleMania 2000 on the N64.

I was playing against the CPU and it was, frankly, cheating. Repeatedly. I just couldn’t get past this one match because it miraculously countered my special move at the final moment then instantly beat me from nowhere. Identical every time. Eventually the frustration reached boiling point, the red mist descended, and all I could think to do at that moment was…

…now, I want to stress that it was a long time ago, I was and am very sensible, and I am not at all violent…

…anyway, in my futile, primitive rage, all I could do was headbutt my controller then launch it into my bedroom wall, where it snapped in two on impact.

I don’t know what hurt more: that the controller’s stick drew a little blood in a tiny crescent shape, or that I had destroyed my clear blue controller. Serves me right and I have never allowed a game to make me so angry since. I just turn off and calm down doing something else these days.
FoximusPrime81 (gamertag/NN ID/Twitter)

Loveably infuriating
The Anor Londo archers in Dark Souls pushed me very close to annihilating my controller.

The whole of Blighttown did my blood pressure no favours either. Could probably choose about 20+ moments from the Soulsborne games that have annoyed the @#* out of me.

Amazing games all the same though.
Anon

Controller survival tips
I try not to get too angry with gaming, but when you die to a boss with just one hit needed to kill it, or you’ve spent so much time dying to a Final Fantasy boss and then come to the realisation that you really need to spend time to do more levelling up!

So yes, anger can get the better of gamers for sure. But only one moment comes to me where biting the controller to bits was just moments away! Yakuza 2 for the PlayStation 2 was a highly enjoyable game, so much so I put the game on a tough difficulty setting, possibly the highest. And I got through the game being reasonably challenged and overcoming all. Right until the last boss on top of a skyscraper, and then anger was fulfilled!

I was determined not to lower the difficulty as it was an option, but death after death after death was just pushing me towards being triggered all the time. In the Soulsborne games I eventually altered tactics enough to end a battle victoriously. But it was not working here, and the difficulty setting had to be eventually lowered. This was obviously before the Soulsborne series was released.

Really annoying due to getting through the entire game up to this point on hard mode! And it felt like completing the game in defeat, which spoilt the experience of a rather good and well-designed game.

I do find that spikes of difficulty in certain areas of games are OK, but a pain when the game kind of doesn’t need it, as the majority of the game is pretty much stable going. But like I said, these are rare moments of gaming anger, apart from the usual little grunts one gives now and again in a tough area or boss situation.

Did the controller survive! Yes, but not without some casing damage, which may or may not have teeth marks present! Still good times when looking back, though it was nothing compared to my coming back from despair to my moment of victory over the Orphan of Kos on New Game+++ in Bloodborne! Gaming gives emotional moments like these like no other.
Alucard

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The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length and content.

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