GamerSushi Asks: Gaming Control Fails?

gaming control fails

I’ve gotten to the point now in my gaming career where I automatically assume I know everything there is to know about a game and its interface. With the standardization of most control set-ups, I’m usually correct but there are certain times where something about a game will mystify me to no end and force me to crack open the manual.

The last time I can clearly remember this happening was with Deus Ex: Human Revolution where it took me a good six hours before I realized that holding down the “Y” button on my 360 controller would open up the quick inventory and allow me to swap items lickety-split. Before that I had been doing the complicated dance of pausing, opening the menu and exchanging things from there. I felt that the lack of an expedited way to manipulate your cache was a pretty glaring omission from an otherwise excellent game, so you can imagine how red my face was when a casual perusal of the instructions told me that I was doing things the hard way.

Another game that came under some moderate fire recently for not spelling things out clearly enough was Bastion where people apparently didn’t know that you could re-do the challenges without exiting and going all the way back to the titular stronghold and picking them again. This was fairly obvious to me but a few people I follow on Twitter (non-GamerSushi folks, just so no one thinks I’m calling them out) seemed to run into this problem constantly.

While no one likes to admit that they’re not the best at something (gamers especially), I was wondering if you guys had any embarrassing stories of this nature to share. Was it something like my Deus Ex mishap, or the Bastion one? Go!

Written by

mitch@gamersushi.com Twitter: @mi7ch Gamertag: Lubeius PSN ID: Lubeius SteamID: Lube182 Origin/EA:Lube182 Currently Playing: Stardew Valley, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, Battlefield 4, Tom Clancy Double Feature: Rainbow Six Siege and The Division

14 thoughts on “GamerSushi Asks: Gaming Control Fails?”

  1. I never realized there was an individual mute function in multiplayer Source games until a month into the TF2 beta. Until then I basically disabled all voice in the options menu until the problem left the game.

  2. When I was starting Oblivion a year or 2 back, I had no clue how to drop items. I mean really, Shift + mouse click? who thought that would be intuitive? When all else fails, read the instructions I guess.

  3. Dark Cloud did a really evil thing to me. Before it, any game I had played either solely used or also allowed the D-Pad for movement(bar the N64, this kinda only applies to Sony consoles). Dark Could was the first game to change this so cue (quite literally) 15-20mins of a 9 year old raging about how his Christmas present wouldn’t let him play it. It’s a good thing I raged with that controller rather than walk away before playing it, becasuse when it hit the ground the left analogue stick stayed in the forward position until I retrieved it. Since then, I thoroughly experiment with controls and consult the manual before the disk even goes into the machine. Or pay attention during th tutorial when it tells me about quick inventories! 🙂
    It also taaught me a lot about anger management and how embarrasing it can be.
    Also, the caption used in that picture had me in stitches!

  4. I haven’t been able to say this in a long time, but RTFM <3 ;).

    Actually Mitch, I recently picked up Driver: San Francisco (which is surprisingly a whole tonne of fun) and I'm playing it strictly with my gamepad, and it really dawned on me how hard it is to try to make a game with the limited amount of buttons on a controller. I mean, I played Deus Ex: HR on PC, so the inventory was much different (the classic number pad quickswitch system) than the console versions, so I'm not surprised it isn't clear that holding certain buttons, or combinations of buttons, does certain things.

    Do any of you guys know if there are any console games where you can individually assign commands to buttons, or are they only "presets" like it always used to be?

  5. I was halfway through my second play through of Fallout 3 (so probably about 75 hours overall) before I realized there was a light on the pip-boy.

  6. @ Julez, some games allow for it but not many. Resistance 2 did, which I loved as I could play it using sensible button layouts. The Resistance 3 beta did too I believe. GT5, Fallout and Oblivion did it… Other than those, there aren’t that many. Bioshock, maybe? I can’t honestly remember.It really is a feature I’d love to see more frequently.
    To echo James Freeman, the light on the pip-boy ecaped me for about the same amount of time and to echo supernovaforce, the stupid drop-item thing was stupid. REALLY stupid.

  7. Try playing Dead Island as the knife throwing guy. When you have to throw all 10 knives into one of the big guys, and you then have to go into the inventory and manually equip the other knives you have. Really annoying in coop online, cause the game doesn’t pause…leaving you to take refuge on top of a car while you equip knife after knife while the zombies are clawing at your ankles…

  8. You know they tell you that you can use the Y Menu in the tutorial, right? Problem is you’ll stop using it right away because if you highlight a health item – even just passing over it while still holding Y – you’ll use it, even if you’re saving it for later.

    I don’t tend to get annoying with having to go to the inventory screen to switch weapons (since it doesn’t open me up to attacks while I’m fumbling with holding the Y button or whatever), but there are definitely some games with terrible controller setups (the worst offender in recent memory: Mass Effect 1; ME2 was a big improvement in control, though). Having smooth controls that make sense and are easy to input is probably just as important as having a well-designed level or weapons. It just takes experience and an understanding of industry standards to know when a control setup will work right. It’s not as hard as it sounds.

  9. Final Fantasy. Just…all of them for PlayStation.

    In any other game, the standard for main menu is the Start Button. Simple. In Final Fantasy, I press square.

    No, its they don’t explain it to you. No, you don’t get a five minute tutorial in the beginning of the game. It. Just. Is.
    Thank you Square Enix for destroying the standard of pausing games forever.

  10. [quote comment=”17818″]Final Fantasy. Just…all of them for PlayStation.

    In any other game, the standard for main menu is the Start Button. Simple. In Final Fantasy, I press square.

    No, its they don’t explain it to you. No, you don’t get a five minute tutorial in the beginning of the game. It. Just. Is.
    Thank you Square Enix for destroying the standard of pausing games forever.[/quote]

    The pause button is start. The menu button is triangle. They are two different functions.

    Yes, I am a fanboy.

    😉

  11. Maybe I’m mis-remembering, but didn’t the first few Metal Gear Solid games do the accept/decline backwards? Like, X was decline and O was accept?

  12. Making/using potions, poisons and traps was a nightmare in Dragon Age until I figured out the circular menu thingie.

  13. [quote comment=”17820″]Maybe I’m mis-remembering, but didn’t the first few Metal Gear Solid games do the accept/decline backwards? Like, X was decline and O was accept?[/quote]

    Yeah and FF did that, too. It’s standard in Japan.

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