I've had enough


I love games, but like any relationship, you have to occasionally grit your teeth and put up with some bullshit. They whisk you away to fantastic worlds. They test your intellect. They make you laugh. They make you cry. They make you think. But they’re also incredibly annoying. So I’ve decided, in the interests of keeping our relationship together, I have to air some grievances. The therapist is here, I’m lying on a couch, and I’m about to tell them everything in games that I’ve bloody well had enough of.

  • I’ve had enough of being asked to follow a character whose walking speed is slightly slower than my own, meaning I have to keep stopping every two seconds.
  • I’ve had enough of stealth sections where getting spotted means a restart, rather than adapting to the new circumstances in a creative or interesting way.
  • I’ve had enough of people shouting at me, telling me to hurry up or reminding me of the mission objective, when I stop to explore the environment.
  • I’ve had enough of playing as powerful characters who are brilliant at everything. That’s boring. I want to play as people with flaws and shortcomings. Something to overcome.
  • I’ve had enough of games with limited resources (like, say, fuel) that are so cheap to buy, the limitation is rendered totally meaningless, and resupplying becomes little more than a tiresome chore.
  • I’ve had enough of the camera zooming in on the solution to a puzzle just as I’m about to use my brain to figure it out for myself.
  • I’ve had enough of games with a dozen unskippable dev/middleware logos before I even get to the main menu. Yeah, I can delete them or tweak the .ini, but I shouldn’t have to.
  • I’ve had enough of games I have to restart to apply new graphics settings, especially when they’re guilty of the last thing.
  • I’ve had enough of menus with fancy 3D in-engine backgrounds/visual elements that pointlessly increase the time it takes for them to load.
  • I’ve had enough of games that use a cut-scene to show something that could have easily been put in the player’s hands.
  • I’ve had enough of open worlds littered with arbitrary, meaningless collectables that have no real benefit other than increasing your completion percentage.
  • I’ve had enough of unskippable cutscenes placed just before the checkpoint of a particularly difficult section.
  • I’ve had enough of diaries, documents, tape players, and audio logs being used to tell a story, rather than something that plays to the strengths of the medium.
  • I’ve had enough of games replicating the flaws of camera lenses. Dust, flares, simulated chromatic aberration. Why the obsession with cameras? What about the human eye?
  • I’ve had enough of big, beautiful skyboxes that are actually just fancy window dressing, showing you places you’ll never be able to reach or explore.
  • I’ve had enough of defending a character while they slowly fix a broken machine or hack a computer or turn a valve to open a heavy door.
  • I’ve had enough of games that have to reload the entire level when you change certain graphics settings.
  • I've had enough of developers not recording enough dialogue variations, and hearing the same barks over and over again until they become knives in your ears.
  • I've had enough of having microtransactions waggled in front of my nose, to the point where a game feels more like a shopfront than a place I want to spend time in.

So that’s what I’ve had enough of. But what have YOU had enough of? Air your own dirty laundry in the comments below. Let’s heal and grow together.

Andy Kelly

If it’s set in space, Andy will probably write about it. He loves sci-fi, adventure games, taking screenshots, Twin Peaks, weird sims, Alien: Isolation, and anything with a good story.