Tearing for sure. Usually it's pretty easy for me to overlook low-res textures/shadows and pop-in when I'm playing a fast-moving action game, and sometimes aliasing can be hidden when there's a ton of grit/detail on screen (see Uncharted and The Last of Us). Screen tearing, though... It stands out like a sore thumb and is usually pretty persistent throughout.
Bad character modelling, or well more inconsistent character modelling. I understand that main characters will be modeled with much more detail but in games like the Yakuza series where the main character's look like real people then the NPCs just look like low res mannequins it is really jarring. I don't really mind most technical graphical issues, I barely even notice aliasing unless it is really bad. Screen tearing can be annoying at times but I usually don't notice it to bad.
This is a good question. I think a lack of anisotropic filtering would be by biggest peeve. That is strictly console games as it can be forced on a PC. After that comes poor parallax mapping and then low resolution textures. I can handle a lack of vsync and aa over all that.
Also, lack of ambient occlusion has lately been driving me a little mad in older games. Fortunately a lot can be forced through NVidia Inspector (If Geforce owner obv).
Probably screen tearing.
When you put the sword on your back and it just hovers about a foot away from you.
Hate this. There are so many combinations I can't use in Dark Souls because the weapons are several inches from my characters' hips or backs. And why do most character models still not have belts/straps for their weapons and holders? I haven't seen a single rifle with a strap in a game, but tons in movies.
Screen tearing, low texture res, narrow FOV, 30 fps cap.
If your game has all of these... that's a paddlin'.
Low texture res is only bad when they back up against high res textures. If your entire game looks like muddy shit then I'll just assume you ported it from the N64. If 2 out of every 5 textures looks like shit, you don't know what you're doing.
I really can't stand bad aliasing. I want my polygonal edges to be straight lines and not a crawling stair of pixels. But since that problem isn't huge these days my vote's on Screen Tearing. Nothing takes me out of the immersion as forcefully as when the image split in half during movement. I hope they somehow get rid of that problem soon.
A lot of games do some really fuckin' awful things to pull off "Depth of Field." Great examples of how NOT to do DoF effects are Mirror's Edge (Just weird bloomy garbage effect) and ArmA (basically splits stuff into 4 points, looks really weird and not at all DoF but more like the dumb filter that GTA IV had).
Im tired of hitting invisible shit in GTA V, so im going to say pop in. I find that pop in can affect gameplay more than most other graphical problems.
Yeah draw distance is a big one as well. It's why ArmA can be so damned impressive when you're looking out across a couple dozen kilometers and you can see buildings and trees out there, or looking over Fallujah and every building is rendered. It's pretty intense.
Definitely LOD/pop in. The rest are all annoying in their own right but pop in drives me absolutely crazy especially on PC games where I have it in my head I can somehow fix it with settings, ini edits, or what have you. With consoles games it annoys me less because I can't do anything about it myself, but if I even think I can make it better I'll waste hours trying to do so.
Screen-tearing, while can still be noticeable, doesn't really bother me as much as the norm it seems. I voted draw distance/pop-in anywhoo. It was especially egregious in Tales of Xillia, where you could literally see the towns pop-in before your very eyes as you were walking around. Pretty damn annoying when you collide with something that hadn't loaded in yet while you're driving fast in an open-world game, too. I remember that happening pretty often in GTAIV.
Though if framerate was applicable, that'd take my vote every time. It's pretty much the only reason I'd want a gaming PC; graphically I'm fine with what consoles can usually dish out, but when it's also running that sub-30fps (which a lot of PS3 ports suffer from), then there's a problem.
Clipping is pretty annoying for me. I can ignore most of it just fine, it's mostly the clipping on a character model that sucks. Clipping will dictate what hair I pick in character creators and make all dope capes and cloaks lame in most 3rd person games. I ignored a class I actually liked playing in Dragon's Dogma because the run animation had your arms and legs clipping through a large shield.
@humanity: To be fair, RAGE only had texture pop-in when you moved or looked around. When standing perfectly still the game was absolutely pop-in free like 75% of the time. So lay off!
I agree it's an amazing engine for games where one keeps their head perfectly still!
A framerate so low or unstable that it gets in the way of the game.
My PS3 Slim went through Grand Theft Auto V without it, but it did happen a few weird times in Online when explosions stacked. At all times in singleplayer I never experienced that the framerate could be blamed for a death or a vehicular crash. It never put me off or made me enjoy the game less, it worked and was a strong 4/5 game despite the online being like six months after in development but I won't say no to playing it again in 1080p60, be it on the PlayStation 4 or the PC.
Dark Souls console framerates can suck it though.
(My GTAV experience got poppier and choppier towards mid-November when I finally gave up and sold it because hey, PS4.)
Overuse of Depth of Field is probably the biggest problems I have with some games. Borderlands was particularly heavy with it. There were points where 80% of the screen was out of focus, and the only thing that you can see clearly was the gun. Thank goodness most games allow you to turn it off.