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427 Comments

What Happened While Playing Prototype

Maybe Nintendo's onto something with this whole wrist strap thing.

I've always suspected that this console generation's complete lack of wired controllers was going to come back around and bite me at some point--and while I was trying to get Prototype reviewed on a deadline last week, it did. As I wrote in the review, the game can get pretty darn frustrating from time to time. You'll occasionally have so many tanks, helicopters, and burly mutants bearing down on you that the only viable way to survive is to peel off, go heal in a hidden place, then come back and return to your objective.

When you're trying to get a game finished expeditiously in this line of work, though, you sometimes don't have the option of slowing down and withdrawing for a bit (and forget about turning the game off to take a break outright). I foolishly kept banging my head against the same tough mission over and over, until... it is with some shame that I admit I let the frustration get to me and hurled my controller at the (thankfully carpeted) floor, resulting in this:

OK, maybe the picture is anti-climactic since there's not a lot of damage to the controller itself; you can see a bit of the red plastic chipped off on the left , and there's some separation between the red and black parts that some work with a Torx screwdriver may or may not fix. The controller still works fine.

It's my pride that took the real beating, the embarrassment of having lost my temper and expressing it in such a childish way. This is the most damage I've ever caused to a piece of hardware due to video game rage in nearly 25 years of playing them. (Seems like there should be a clever word to describe "anger at difficult video games." Any ideas?)

Anyway, I can't help wondering if I'm not the only one. How angry do difficult games make you? Are you in the habit of taking it out on your stuff? What do you do to cool off? If you have photos of any broken controllers or other casualties, I'd love to see them.
427 Comments
Posted by Brad
I've always suspected that this console generation's complete lack of wired controllers was going to come back around and bite me at some point--and while I was trying to get Prototype reviewed on a deadline last week, it did. As I wrote in the review, the game can get pretty darn frustrating from time to time. You'll occasionally have so many tanks, helicopters, and burly mutants bearing down on you that the only viable way to survive is to peel off, go heal in a hidden place, then come back and return to your objective.

When you're trying to get a game finished expeditiously in this line of work, though, you sometimes don't have the option of slowing down and withdrawing for a bit (and forget about turning the game off to take a break outright). I foolishly kept banging my head against the same tough mission over and over, until... it is with some shame that I admit I let the frustration get to me and hurled my controller at the (thankfully carpeted) floor, resulting in this:

OK, maybe the picture is anti-climactic since there's not a lot of damage to the controller itself; you can see a bit of the red plastic chipped off on the left , and there's some separation between the red and black parts that some work with a Torx screwdriver may or may not fix. The controller still works fine.

It's my pride that took the real beating, the embarrassment of having lost my temper and expressing it in such a childish way. This is the most damage I've ever caused to a piece of hardware due to video game rage in nearly 25 years of playing them. (Seems like there should be a clever word to describe "anger at difficult video games." Any ideas?)

Anyway, I can't help wondering if I'm not the only one. How angry do difficult games make you? Are you in the habit of taking it out on your stuff? What do you do to cool off? If you have photos of any broken controllers or other casualties, I'd love to see them.
Edited by Heartagram

O noes.....

I've slammed my guitar down a few times after failing out on Raining blood over and over....


Nerd Rage is the best way to describe it

Posted by langdon_alger

game rage, pure & simple.

Posted by Cyst

Clever way to describe anger at videogames? -RAGEQUIT

Posted by Serker

I feel like the term Rage Quit can apply to hurling a piece of hardware in anger as well... that is essentially quitting, right?

Posted by Kohe321

You're not alone, Brad. XD

Posted by MattyFTM

I sometimes ragequit, but I've never thrown a controller or anything like that.

Moderator
Posted by LethalKi11ler

There's no difficult games, there is only Ninja Gaiden.

Posted by FluffyNutSatchel

I unfortunately dont have any pictures of the event. However, I had reached the final boss in Final Fantasy XII, after having done every single hunt (Including Tiamat, who has a shitload of health points). Anyway, Once I got to the final boss, My dog ran in the room and knocked my ps2 off of my shelf...which would be fine and dandy, I saved not too long ago, Its going to be finee.


In the ps2's fall, it hit the memory card, Breaking and corrupting my save date for every game on it. I then launched my ps2 controller into my dog.
Posted by TripMasterMunky

i've never broken any controller out of frustration. Shame on you, Brad. But I hardly get super frustrated in games, last time I remember is this one section in Ninja Gaiden Black. If I get real frustrated like that, then I'll just curse or flip off the TV lol. I never even think about breaking the controllers though. It's been awhile since I've got frustrated with a game though, they make them easier nowadays, which I'm not really complaining about.

Posted by Reverseface

Wow brad seems like such a cool and calm dude.....INSIDE IS A RAGING BEAST OF WILD DESIRES

Posted by Sunjammer

First time through Bionic Commando i played it on Commando (inadvertently believing it was the second-hardest, instead of the BALLS OUT INSANE HARD mode it is). There are moments in that game where you'll fight a robot that will one-two punch you to instadeath as soon as it gets close to you, and you'll wear it down over a long hard battle, only to be rewarded with 2 or 3 of that robot ganging up on you immediatly without giving you a checkpoint between. I guess it's anticlimactic, but my #1 technique is to swear loudly and turn off the console. The moment something turns into that kind of unbearable griefing, i need a cup of tea or a hug or something. Maybe a couple hours sleep.

Funny, considering i used to complete Ninja Gaiden fairly easily when i was a kid. World 6 of that game today makes me want to never play games again. Age..

Posted by ColumnBreaker

The last time I threw a controller it was of the NES variety, and it was because of a game involving turtles of the ninja variety.

Posted by verbalkint4

I once put a nice sized crack in a controller slamming it into a tiled floor after a frustrating mission in GTA IV.  Nerd rage is right. 

Posted by JJOR64

Maybe Brad is a Angry Video Game Nerd?

Posted by Clubvodka

I put a hole in my wall with a Rock Band drum stick. God I love Foreplay/Long Time but I'd just had enough

Posted by Scroll

I've had massive rage playing some of the old Rainbow six games. Especially Rainbow six 3, extremely time sensitive mission + only one team mate + hostages + holding off respawning enemies = RAGE

Posted by Harknett

7 keyboards were smashed against the wall in my Everquest days. 

Posted by Death_Unicorn

I've gotten pretty pissed, but I have only flung my controller at something soft.

Posted by Cynical_M

I usually punch myself in the chest...I dont want to break my stuff.

Posted by nohthink

I totally feel you. That game is soooooooooooo frustrating. It's not hard. It's just frustrating. I hated it.

Posted by Drebin_893

Tekken 4 broke many a controller.

Posted by RawShark

Prototype really isn't that difficult. You should be ashamed Brad.

Ninja Gaiden on the other hand... FFFFFFFFFFFF

Posted by BenderUnit22

I've done way worse to my controllers.

Posted by alsnuts2

Brad is a controller chucker? I would have never had him pegged as one.

Based on my preconceptions of the 4 guys Id say the editors with the shortest fuses are

Ryan
Jeff
Brad
Vinny

Posted by ahoodedfigure

As far as venting, I swear.  A lot.  A lot more than usual, with a lot more creative juxtapositioning between subject and object.  That and I punch furniture that I know won't break my hand and won't BE broken.

For a term, we might look to German with:

Spieldrang (guest-starring drang from sturm und drang, or however that's spelled)

I used to wreck Atari controllers a lot, but they were sort of easy to wreck.  I'm impressed you actually managed to make a dent in one of those new controllers; I'm guessing they make these controllers like American Tourister used to make their luggage:

  

Posted by SilverArrows

I am loving prototype, and yes, it can get a little bit frustrating. But I wonder, is it fair to rate a game like that when you have a deadline to meet?

Anyways, games that made me hurl controllers, Ninja Gaiden and Ninja Gaiden 2. I have a broken Xbox controller for the first game, but i've been better at chugging the controller at softer things, to avoid any damages so far :)

Posted by Simbyotic

Its your fault you are always pulling a Brad...

Posted by cc23574

You should stop pulling a Brad!

Posted by cjmhockey

When I first started playing drums on expert for rock band, I was getting extremely frustrated whenever I failed and always whacked the yellow pad on the drums as hard as i could with both drum sticks. In the end I snapped the pad in half. I wish I had a digital camera so I could show it off. In other situations though I usually just grind my teeth and shut off the console before anything gets broken.

Posted by BR4DL3I9H

Short answer, never. I am too level headed, and i always think of all the effort i will have to go to should i rage break one of my controllers. It more to do with laziness, than anything else.

Posted by DemonLeo

Street Fighter 4. Oh god, trying to beat Seth, I got very angry and threw my arms up in despair, forgetting momentarily that I didn't have a wired controller. To my horror, I saw the controller fly, tumbling end over end across the room, landing with a terrific thud. The controller seemed fine, but unfortunately, both the bumpers no longer worked, so beating Seth was all but impossible and I was forced to give up and buy a new controller later that day. In my ten or so years of gaming that's by far the worst I've done.

Posted by super_machine

Dude, wireless changes nothing. My friend nailed his sister in the face with a NES controller playing Defender II.

Posted by xxNBxx

I thrown a NES controller once as well.  But I just flicked it away.  My brother one time put the NES controller in his mouth bit down on it and thrash his head like a dog then throw it.  (my brother has anger problems)

Posted by piderman

I've broken many a keyboard foot in hitting ESC just a little too hard over stupidly frustrating games :P

Posted by Moztacular

If all these controllers and peripheries weren't so dang expensive it's possible that I would have thrown a few more by now. Although back on the original xbox I got real pissed at a splinter cell game once and saw an old N64 controller lying around that smashed onto the floor. Being a nintendo product, I doubt i damaged a thing. I also read an fan letter in a magazine years ago where a guy threw a NES off his 2nd story deck and it still worked.

Posted by GammatestingRick

I'm really bad about this stuff - I have game-rage issues.

I recently snapped part of my DS playing Henry Hatsworth. There's a pic here:

http://www.rickdakan.com/blog/2009/4/21/henry-hatsworth-is-freaking-hard.html

I once tore a third-party PS2 controller to shreds while playing Resident Evil 4

And just today I wanted to throw my controller through the wall playing the final boss on Prototype, but I didn't. Instead I wrote an angry blog post about it...

Edited by dvorak

I've never done anything like this, it's just a damn game. Prototype wasn't that hard, anyway.

Posted by cinemandrew

I'm actually really good at reminding myself of the cost of the controller just before I do anything I know I'd regret. I came really close to breaking that habit while playing Bionic Commando recently. The most annoying part about this is that I actually broke the left bumper on one of my 360 controllers just by dropping it from the couch onto the floor. It hit just right, and now the button doesn't work. Maybe I should just give up on playing nice with my controllers, and just buy spares ahead of time. =)

Posted by iiNF3RNo

threw my controller once trying to beat mile high club

Posted by JustinNotJason

I went through about 5 PS2 controllers last gen for reasons very similar. 5 is a very conservative number too.

Posted by StarFoxA

That's nothing. My brother got frustrated while playing Red Faction: Guerrilla and threw his controller (mine, actually) onto the carpeted floor, splitting the controller in half.

Posted by Origina1Penguin

Prototype can be a REALLY frustrating game at times.  Your rage is shared by many.

Posted by Pie

Can i have my goshdarn free map pack yet?

Posted by LordKorax

When I get angry, breaking stuff is usually the best way for me to start feeling better, but I always secretly prided myself on the fact that I never broke a piece of gaming equipment. I would shout at the TV, the game, the stupid developers that made the game, or even just spout violent nonsense. But one day, it happened. It wasn't even really that big of an outburst. I just tossed my 360 controller about 6 inches in the air out of desperation, and it slipped from my grasp when it fell back down. The controller hit the linoleum floor and the RB button broke. I was immediately more mad at myself than anything else.

Posted by Sparky_Buzzsaw

Never been one to slaughter innocent controllers.  True, you don't have to deal with the lamentation of the women for killing 'em, but still... I always just turn the game off and go do something else.  Like reading.  Or shaving the neighbor's cats.  There's just no point in getting frustrated to the point of anger with a game. 

"F**k you, Scrabble!  I'm not taking another lousy vowel, so you can eat my thunder, bitch!"  See how stupid it looks?

Moderator
Posted by HyBound

The only, and I mean only time I ever threw a controller in anger was for the Bionic Commando reboot. My PS3 controller absolutely shattered to pieces and I still find random bits and bobs from it every now and then. I'm 22 and I took out my anger like a 4 year old... I'm quite ashamed of myself. It also made buying a replacement controller that much more emotionally taxing.

...I told my wife i sat on it... I think she believed me until she found an R1 button in her jewelry box. Oy.

Posted by makari

Back in the NES days, I used to throw my controller at the floor when I raged. I sat on the floor and it was carpeted though, so the controller pretty much just bounced right back into my hands most of the time.

Posted by alsnuts2

I rarely get too frustrated playing games. Probably due to my extraordinarily high skill level.  When I do reach my limit I toss it in the air back over my head and shut off the game.

Edited by cityofdis0

I remember smashing my Mad Catz PS2 Blue See Through by throwing it at the cement walls in my basement. Fuck you Socom online!

Edit: Lost two keyboards playing KOTR and Classic WoW.