What are the worst games you've played a significant amount of recently and why?

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bigsocrates

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I started out this year determined to stop playing games that I didn't enjoy, but recently I've fallen back into bad habits. My latest terrible game that I've been putting time into is Torchlight III. That game is the blandest AARPG it is possible to imagine. I got it on Game Pass so at least I didn't spend money on it, but it has almost nothing to offer. The combat is boring and repetitive. The story is more or less non-existent (though weirdly there's some decently written and voice acted stuff in the lore stones you find scattered around.) The loot is awful and extremely repetitive, often dropping multiples of the same legendary item within like 30 minutes, and is a chore to manage. The skills are boring and the bonuses you get for putting skill points into them are even more boring. It's almost impressive how much they've managed to make leveling up bad. The quests are literally all just "go here, kill the next boss." There's a fort building thing that feels literally pointless. There are a couple structures that have uses but you could have just stuck those in towns and skipped having these random forts in between every quest zone. The rest of the fort stuff is just cosmetic, but not even good cosmetic. BORING cosmetic.

So why am I playing it? I don't really know on this one. It's kind of an inoffensive bland time killer? But I have so much better stuff to play and I should stop putting time into it, even if it's time when I'm tired at night and just looking to settle down with something before bedtime. There are much better low key things I could be doing.

I always have a reason for playing bad games but they're almost never worth it. Here are some of the others I've played recently and why.

Werewolf: The Apocalypse - Earthblood: I actually paid a significant amount for this because I liked the license and thought it might be a fun B game and then when I discovered that it was a 75% finished boring linear slog I played through to the end mostly so I could whine about it and because the trophies were easy. Trophies/achievements are a terrible reason to play games you don't enjoy but sometimes they get me.

Ice Age: Scrat's Nutty Adventure: This one was just so weird I was fascinated by it. It's a very strange design for a host of reasons. This is a reasonable reason to play a bad game (because I was engaged and enjoying the weirdness) but it wore off well before the end and I should have bailed. To be fair it's only 4 hours long so I didn't waste a ton of time on it.

Soul Calibur VI: Let me explain. Soul Calibur VI is a very good fighting game overall. I'm specifically talking about the Chronicles story mode here. That mode is dire. It has extremely long static cut scenes with bad voice over and the ratio of talking to fighting is literally like 5 to 1. There are chapters with no fights at all, for some reason. I played through a bunch of this because I like Soul Calibur VI as a fighting game, and I generally like story modes in fighting games (including the SC VI Libra of Souls mode) but I should have bailed after the first couple chapters when I saw what this actually is. Maybe the worst thing in the post, though I highly recommend the game as a whole. I can cut myself some slack here because at least I was TRYING to play something good.

Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One and Full Frontal Assault: I was trying to get through all of the Ratchet & Clank games before the new one comes out, and I bought these years ago on a deep PSN sale. I should have just skipped them. They were both bad. At least Full Frontal Assault was short. All 4 One was like 8 hours long and I thoroughly disliked it. The performance alone was just total garbage. It's not like either of them have 'important' story (if that even exists with R&C.)

Final Fantasy XIII: I know this one is divisive and has its fans, and it certainly looks great for a 2010 game, and has some truly great music, but everything else about it is so bad. This is the quintessential "play 20 hours to get to the good part" game but I don't know if I'm going to be able to make it. I'm through chapter 7 and I've probably enjoyed like 2-3 hours of the over 10 I've put in (off and on over the last 6 months or so), but I want to like it and people say that it does improve so I'm torn on whether to try and continue or just cut my losses.

Coffee Talk: I like everything about this game (graphics, music, aesthetic, vibe coffee minigame) except the characters and dialog, which is very bad because it is a visual novel. This one I have sunk time into over the last 6 months because it was highly reviewed by some people and because there's so much about it that I really do like, but it's horrible to "play" by which I mean read, because I don't want to spend time with any of these people, which the game clearly thinks I should. It's like being lectured to by a well intentioned but not very bright college sophomore who is also kind of drunk. It's the gaming equivalent of Cecily Strong's Girl You Wish You Hadn't Started A Conversation With at a Party character.

As you can see there are a lot of reasons to play bad games. Trophies/Achievements. Vinnyitis (the need to play every game in a series before playing the latest.) Morbid fascination (this is extremely common on these forums, with entire blog series being driven by it.) The Sunk Cost Fallacy (I paid for this/got it for free so I have to play it to "get my money's worth," which is like eating a piece of rotten fruit just because you paid for it.) Attachment to a series. Good reviews/word of mouth. One I haven't mentioned here because it hasn't happened recently but has in a past is A friend/loved one wanted you to play it with them. The desire to write aboutsomething. Inertia/boredom. Good Aesthetics/Other Aspects.

What bad games have you been playing recently and why? I mean games that you kept playing after you knew you didn't enjoy them, not games that you played 15 minutes of before bouncing off.

Also someone please smack me before I play any more Torchlight III.

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Justin258

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There are console versions of Torchlight 1 and 2 if you want better loot games on an Xbox.

Otherwise... I played a few hours of EYE Divine Cybermancy earlier this year, an experience which I highly recommend to people more interested in weirdness and nonsense than quality.

Also, this isn't recent but I finished FEAR 3 three times. Also, not me but my brother recently finished Dead Space 3 for the 4th time. He's had three people ask him to play it co op and he hasn't learned how to say no yet.

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bigsocrates

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@justin258: I've played both of them. I think Torchlight 1 was a fun, snappy, take on the Diablo format and I enjoyed it. Torchlight II I liked much less, though partially because the console version was kind of busted on Xbox. It wouldn't launch at all for me for like the first 2 weeks after release and then it had bugged achievements and a lot of other issues.

Diablo III is also on Xbox and is a much better game, and there are lots of others. I have no real excuse for playing Torchlight III, which is just bad.

You and your brother seem to love the bad third game in generally well-liked series. Torchlight III might be right in your wheelhouses!

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TheRealTurk

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Well, I can only speak to FFXIII on that list. You should absolutely cut bait and stop playing. Saying "it gets better" is only true in the broadest sense of the term. It's like saying the COVID numbers where I am are "getting better." Objectively that's true, but that doesn't mean it isn't still a fucking disaster. I can save you some time by summing up what happens:

  • Lightning continues to be a jerk to everyone for absolutely no reason.
  • Hope continues to be a whiny little bitch.
  • Vanille continues to be obnoxious to listen to.
  • The game continues to be a linear slog, even after it technically "opens up."
  • You fight a guy who is actually a god who is actually a machine that actuallyrepresents an existential concept.
  • Said machine-god-concept-guy is defeated through The Power of Friendship.
  • Incomprehensible Final Fantasy CG happens.
  • Everyone claims to have learned an undefined lesson about undefined things.
  • The End.

FFs VII, VIII, IX, and XII are currently on GamePass. All of those are better games than XIII if you're looking to get a Final Fantasy fix.

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imhungry

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A few months back I finally got around to watching Digimon Adventure tri in full and thus got it in my head that I would like to play a Digimon video game because I was reminded of all those good nostalgic feelings. Steam tells me that I played Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth for about 50 hours, which is at least 40 hours too many! There is a lot of writing in that game and it is the worst that I've been subjected to in quite some time; as an added bonus, the localization is extra terrible so the writing comes off even worse!

That being said there was enough good in the Digimon raising and battling that I kept playing. I reached a point where I realised that I had absolutely zero investment in the story, which would usually be the part where I give up on a story-driven RPG, but I had heard rumblings that the plot got more focused in the second half of the game. With that carrot dangled in front of me, combined with my pot commitment of ~15 hours and the dumb part of my brain pushing me to keep going till I got the good Digimon, I never stood a chance. So I did what any reasonable person would do - flipped on Cheat Engine and went to town.

To cut the rest of the story short, it was completely not worth it. The story was genuinely worthless and the completionist in me got tempted into beating all the optional super-bosses at the end of the game since I figured I already had access to great Digimon thanks to my nefarious memory-scanning activities. That part ended up being pretty fun since I've always enjoyed working out strategies for 'unfair' fights but on balance I think I still came out with net negative enjoyment.

There's even a whole other game in the Complete Edition that I thankfully convinced myself to not even start. I have heard some chatter about how it's the better written story though...

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cornfed40

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Star Wars Battlefront II. Downloaded it from Gamepass just for the campaign, needed a random Star Wars story fix. Man, that thing really was a turd. And the playable story hero charecters you get to play as are Lando, Han Solo, and Leia. Know what really excites me in Star Wars fiction? Normal dudes with pistols and grenades

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bigsocrates

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@therealturk: What if Final Fantasy XIII gets really really good though? Plus there are those sequels.

I am a big FF VII fan. I really really do not like VIII and I tried it multiple times around launch back in the day. I played IX last year and I enjoyed that one quite a bit, though the story went off the rails at the end and the combat animations were definitely too long, which was both kind of boring and frustrating because of the way turn priority works in that game. But overall I'd say I'm a fan of FF IX.

XII I also played around launch and mostly liked but then I got stuck. That's one I should try again.

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cornfed40

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@bigsocrates: ive never been a huge FF fan, but i was really enjoying XII for a bit last month. Then got to a boss fight against like 4 crocodile dudes who wiped my entire party in about 45 seconds. Then i remembered why im not a big FF fan lol. I was really enjoying the combat and gambit system leading up to that though

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reap3r160

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Honestly, Warzone. It's an unbalanced, hacker laden, little content having mess.

That said, it's the only BR(which I enjoy the format) that I'm any good at and can play solo(hard to get a group with not having a lot of time to play).

I'm HOPING the map "update" they have planned is something substantial,but I'm not expecting much. And the new guns they're adding sound like they will of course be busted.

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Nodima

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#10  Edited By Nodima

Well, I'm sure my nominations won't stack up to most of what'll get discussed in this thread, but it's all relative, right? I struggle to play ten new games a year and maybe around 20 overall, and in that respect, it might be weird to list so many games of such decent regard, but I know some people had strong thoughts about these games and...so did I!

Marvel's Avengers: I wrote about this a bit just a week or two ago, but the "endgame" content really does feel blindsiding and totally derails what was actually a pretty good time. One thing I didn't think to say then: it's stupid that you have both gear and cosmetics. It makes the perpetual loop of gear annoying and the extra costumes feel unnecessary all at once. Also, now with two chunks of DLC to contemplate, the war table offers an ironic and opposite problem than it sounds like it did at launch: there's arguably more options for activities than there are in Destiny 2, and yet they vary so wildly in compensation, difficulty level and intrigue that it quickly feels as though it's all a big sludge. Slap a healthy dose of loading into a mission only to have the targets of the objectives not load in and it's really easy to sour on a fun time real quick. I really think this has a strong core, but everything surrounding that core is just unfortunate. Probably just over 20 hours.

Middle-earth: Shadow of War: Also have written a good amount about this (I think?) and I'm happy to announce that whatever microtransaction problems plagued (or didn't?) this game at launch have been completely wiped from the game. And when you get into a sort of fugue state with the core loop, it's still quite a lot of fun to sprint around as Talion collecting trinkets, dominating orcs and listening to their still-quite-clever cockney insults. Unfortunately, whenever I fell out of that fog it all felt so pointless - the power fantasy didn't have the same novel allure as the original, the story was so fragmented and generic I'm not even sure it had a central theme, and once you get into the castle storming business it's all just...I'm not sure I've ever experienced a game with so many cool and fun ideas that lands with such an ineffectual thud. Probably just over 40 hours.

Spiritfarer: Boom! Let's get spicy. Actually, not really...this was one of my ten games of the year last year and from hour 10 to hour 25 I was very, very interested in this game. However, it doesn't do a very good job of signposting where you can find certain materials you need to progress the traversal skills, nor does it apply any actual weight to the acts of satisfying your shipmates. The longer the game drags on, the more stereotypical the characters become and the less time you want to spend figuring out their likes and dislikes and the façade just kind of fades away. I suppose I could've been smart, told myself I knew where things were going and just let it go (how appropriate...) but I wanted to see it through to the end and if there's any game I spent 40 hours with that easily could've been condensed to 10 or 12, it was Spiritfarer. So, with that significant time qualifier, I felt it worth mentioning here.

Happy to report that before this past winter, I feel like I have to dig way, way back in my trophy list to be reminded of a game I played to the end of for super long that I was let down by at all. There was a lot of jank and wasted time to Mafia III, but its setting and world building saw it through fine for me. Firewatch was a flop for me but I don't think it missed it's mark, I just wasn't on its wavelength. At this point, I'm really digging...Spec Ops: The Line sometimes gets its mediocre gameplay excused as an extension of its Big Idea, but personally that game just sucked to play. I still have nightmares of the enemies that rush you with big blades...I could stretch myself all the way back to inFamous 2 and say I think Insomniac made a lot of poor assumptions about what would make a sequel to the first (practically perfect for its time!) game more engaging and stumbled into a lot of tiny annoyances that really made me sad, but I can't remember if they made me think the game was actually bad enough to qualify for some variant of "worst"...probably not...

And that's it!

Other than Metal Gear Solid 4, and if you liked that game, great. I love, love, love everything else Kojima has done (including Zone of the Enders 1 and Death Stranding!) but MGS4 is heaps of garbo.

(Oh, and of course, everything from the PS2 era back through the NES era that I just don't have a powerful enough memory to conjure. Except James Bond Jr., I guess? I've seen reviews that really take that game to task yet I played it daily for about two years. Yikes.)

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snaketelegraph

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I don't think XIII is terrible or anything, but I'm of the opinion (apparently the uncommon one?) that the first 20 hours are the best ones, because there is plot and character development, and then the game dumps you into a huge directionless field where nothing happens anymore. I'd cut and run if you're not at least intrigued at this point(or in my case, just wanted to play all the mainline FF games). (Although this eventually lead me to play FF13-2 and Lightning Returns which are... both games I probably would've been better off not playing, for different reasons.)

Which is definitely one of my bad reasons to play bad games, having a series/system completionist mindset. I'm currently trying to play as many of my physical disc PS3 games (started before the whole shutdown thing) as I can, which means I've played some bad games that I didn't need to.

Thankfully I gave up on Resident Evil Operation Raccoon City or whatever it's called because like, the second level left me incredibly frustrated with my AI partners during a real annoying slog of a boss. For really no reason I did beat G-Force, which is just a not great kid's game based on a not great kid's movie. It wasn't that hard and I wouldn't say it was awful, but it was too long and probably time better spent on a game I would actually enjoy.

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LapsarianGiraff

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#12  Edited By LapsarianGiraff

@justin258: Aw, I really like EYE, actually. It's overwhelming as hell, but the combat is still better than most modern Deus Ex-likes. Add the atmosphere and pretty varied character builds, and I ended up having a good time. Plus I enjoyed the hacking quite a bit, definitely captured that "oh no I'm being hacked, this is terrible" feeling.

BUT. I only pushed through that initial confusion in the first few hours due to being on a review assignment for that game, so yeah, totally understandable to drop it in your free time.

As for my games I've put too much time into while hating? Well, we've talked about that.

Other ones I haven't blogged about:

  • Grand Theft Auto V. I just felt this weird obligation to complete it, even as the story got less and less interesting and far removed from any of the interesting core conflicts. Ah, yes, the answer is just to shoot everyone who's mad at you, got it! Good ending! Such a disappointment after IV.
  • Resident Evil 6. I was disappointed by 5 leaning too much into action and co-op, after being introduced to the series by 4 and loving it. So imagine my disappointment as 6 goes even harder in that direction, and wasn't even a good action game. Also, they messed up a Leon game! I finished it out of morbid curiosity and a "I have to see it to believe it" feeling, and yep. It's exactly as bad as its reputation suggests. Horrible QTEs; an overabundance of "cinematic" camera moves to show you where you're supposed to go or a door opening, but the game keeps going so you come back from a cutscene and see yourself already being eaten by a zombie; the gunplay feels horrible as you can't tell where you're going to shoot (unlike 4 or 5 where there's an unsteady laser sight, but you know for a fact that the bullet will land on that laser sight); the movement options are neat but almost never required by the level design, and when it is, it's laughably contrived; repeated bullet sponge bosses; vague feedback during most boss fights as to whether or not what you're doing is actually damaging the boss; and some of the most laughably ill-conceived "setpieces" in a modern action game. You thought the jet sequence from Black Ops II controlled poorly? HOO BOY. How about an icy mountain slope with enemies, and any time you take a single hit you slide all the way back down to bottom? That sound fun, kids? Rant aside, this was so bad it made me and a friend revisit 5 and appreciate it waaaaay more. It was an action game, but a pretty decent one at least.
  • I mildly regret finishing Rise of the Tomb Raider. The exploration in that game is enjoyable, but by the end you're not exploring the quasi-open world any more, just going through the motions with back-to-back fights, and the combat is not the strong point in that game. I enjoyed my time with it, but I would have enjoyed it more if I had stopped playing after completing the last optional tomb.
  • Battlefield: Bad Company 2's campaign. Not offensive or a huge waste of time, just, why?
  • Gods Will be Watching. Starts strong but honestly, you get the idea a couple missions in, and there's not much reason to keep playing it. Making survival or moral decisions systematic is interesting in theory, but I don't think the game escapes the problem of players then being motivated into min-maxing instead of just making decisions naturally.
  • Assassin's Creed II and III. I ended up enjoying Brotherhood-Revelations more, which is sacrilege to some folks, but I just couldn't get down with II orIII. I thought there were really interesting ideas in the story of III, and that and some of the best combat in the series pulled me through Connor's adventure, but there were probably better uses of my time. II, on the other hand, I kinda wish I had never finished, because there's some story stuff that only makes sense in Brotherhood with that context, but it's not that important, nothing a quick google search can't clear up, and the game part? Oh my god, I feel like people are playing a different game than I am when they talk about this. The mission design is just as bad as the first game, if not worse, there's just waaaaay more of it. The story overstays its welcome, there are 3 types of collectibles instead of 1 from the original, but they get way more in your face about collecting them as they litter the map with icons. Ezio, he's a cool dude, and the maps are gorgeous, but I sorely missed the atmosphere and clarity of the first game.
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wollywoo

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I don't waste time playing games once I decide I don't like them. If a game doesn't grab me within two hours or so I'll drop it. One that comes to mind recently is Blue Fire. I love platformers and Metroidvanias and Hollow Knight in particular so I thought it would be up my alley, but the platforming was just really imprecise and frustrating and the checkpointing was very unforgiving so I dropped it. Another is Steamworld: Quest which I thought I would like because I love Slay the Spire and Hearthstone and Steamworld: Dig 2 was amazing. But the combat just didn't click. I also picked up Undertale and dropped it pretty fast when I got bored by the repetitive random battles, but maybe I should try again.

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bigsocrates

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@lapsariangiraff: We finally figured out why you have such a wrong take on Cyberpunk 2077. You were comparing it to good games like Hunt: Showdown, instead of bad games, like Scrat's Nutty Adventure. If you play some Scrat and then Torchlight III and go back to Cyberpunk maybe you will appreciate it properly.

I'll wait.

It will not surprise you to learn that I also liked GTA V, even though I thought the story was not particularly compelling and sometimes pretty bad. It will also not surprise you to learn that things I liked about it were the detail in the city (absolutely breathtaking for a 360 game!), the mainline heist mission design, and some of the random cool details, like the fact that once when I went back to control Trevor he was passed out at a vineyard wearing a sundress.

I don't know how I'd feel about it if I revisited today.

I do think that GTA IV had its own set of problems, even though I really liked that game too. If you felt compelled to dismantle all those mines then surely you could not resist going bowling with cousin Roman every time he called.

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LapsarianGiraff

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#15  Edited By LapsarianGiraff

@bigsocrates: Ha. I also liked the heists of V, and yeah, it looked breathtaking both on 360 and as a PS4/PC upgrade. Honestly, the way that game looked pushed me through a lot of it. The character swapping is a cool concept that I wish they did more with -- the best use was just seeing those funny situations they were in upon inhabiting them.

And then, there are still several duds in the mission design. When it's not one of the few heists, it's just a slog for me. "Drive here while ______ talks to you. Follow them as they walk slowly into this obvious enemy compound. Shoot lots of people. Drive away from the cops. Rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat." This was in IV, too, but it was more acceptable then, or I at least was willing to put up with it because the story and world were so good. Here there was just the world. Or what about some of the really compelling tow truck and shipyard container moving missions?

It might surprise you, but I loved the random social calls in IV, because I enjoyed those characters, and there was usually dialogue to accompany the outings. It also helped that world feel more lively instead of the slog of "mission to mission to mission" with no breathers.

As much as I don't care for GTA V, I still like it more than Cyberpunk by leagues. If only because there are roads you can actually drive on (seriously, did no one at CDPR playtest how awkward those hilly hairpins are with cars or motorcycles)? There's a lot more, but for all my problems with V, it feels like a world that designers intended the player to enjoy moving through, where Cyberpunk is just a mess to navigate, but hey, it'll look pretty in screenshots or in an artist's portfolio.

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El_Blarfo

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#16  Edited By El_Blarfo

Breath of the Wild.

The acclaim has been so universal (barring the odd Jim Sterling or someone like that), that I actually gave it a second go 'round after trying it, hating it, and leaving it alone for 18 months. A friend of mine who's new to gaming started playing it and I thought "gee, maybe the problem is me."

Nope. I've never had less fun with a Zelda game, and rarely with any video game at all. I actually finished the damn thing out some perverse desire to see if it ever became less of a chore. For my money it didn't.

I know there are folks out there who consider Breath of the WIld calming and meditative. I found it unbearably dull-- a game about exploration that does its level best to make it hard for the player to explore.

Anyway, when I got close to the end, I sent my new-gamer friend a text: "About to fight Ganon. if I don't make it, tell my loved ones I hated this game."

FWIW, she's since almost totally left BOTW behind in favor of Stardew Valley. I endorse this.

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bigsocrates

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@lapsariangiraff: The missions in V were often not good but I think it was more acceptable in 2013. But the reason that game's world felt good but the actual game within it was kind of meh is because they were clearly working on the city for GTA Online. They saw what happened with GTA IV's online mode and thought "we can make a TON of money if we go all in, and even if it fails we'll more than recoup from the single player" and then they designed the single player as sort of prototyping for the multiplayer. The generic single player missions all make more sense in that context. They didn't waste time with a lot of big one off set pieces (except the heists, which were prototyping for the online mode heists) because that wouldn't help them with the real focus of the game.

Or at least that's what I believe.

It doesn't surprise me that you liked the random social calls in IV because you wanted to do everything anyway. For me they were an interruption of the things I was actually focused on. I didn't hate them as much as some but I was overall not a big fan of a lot of that.

It's totally unreasonable of you to expect anyone at CDPR to play test how awkward the streets were to drive when they clearly didn't even playtest the driving. The cars in that game are awful, even when they're mostly going straight. It's pretty shocking that a studio with that many resources who made the game over quite a long time didn't get driving better. There are literal N64 games with better driving that were made by like 15 people.

The 32X has games with better driving. And I'm not just talking Virtua Racing!

It's one of the most baffling aspects of that game because you'd think that's something they would have made work earlier in production. Like yeah a lot of the game didn't come together at the end and was buggy or had missing content, but you'd think they'd get the driving to at least "adequate" way before launch. But they didn't!

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geirr

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beard_of_zeus

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Have you played VA-11 Hall-A or The Red Strings Club? They are games of the same ilk (even with drink serving mechanics!) but with actual good writing and characters. I felt the same way about Coffee Talk as you, could not finish it but liked a lot of the trappings.

My answer to your question would be Knights Contract on the 360; it's a bad character action game crossed with Neverdead and a game-long escort quest. The graphics are muddy, there is a ridiculous amount of screen tearing, some confusing level designs where I got lost a bunch, I could go on.

The core of the story is at least interesting - you are an immortal executioner and this witch Gretchen says she'll kill you if you help her beat up a bunch of evil witches. The way the gameplay works is that she has a health bar, your character doesn't, so you always have to keep an eye on her. She will fight a little on her own, but you can also equip her with spells and have her fire them off on command as well. If she gets low on health, you heal her by holding a button to pick her up...and then I would generally run around in circles to dodge enemies during that process. If your character takes too much damage, you lose body parts and become incapacitated - sometimes it's just your arms, sometimes everything but your head, but either way you have to mash a button for an extended period to get back in fighting form (during which time Gretchen is quite vulnerable)

The "why i am playing" is because I decided to look through my 360 games and play some that I had not touched. I actually finished games like Captain America (a surprisingly competent little superhero game) and Ninja Blade (which was like 60% quick-time events, but also some dumb breezy fun). I will normally stick with a game all the way through, even if it isn't great; sometimes it is a nice academic exercise that makes you appreciate good game design more.

BUT...I had to bail on Knights Contract about 2/3rds of the way through (after a dozen hours or so).

There's one boss fight that I attempted probably 40 times in a row, just sitting there for like 2 hours straight. You're on a super tiny piece of metal, suspended by chains over a pit of lava. This fight broke me and I gave up. There are a ridiculous amount of ways that the fight can instantly end, and you have to start over:

  • Gretchen falls off
  • You get hit by a melee attack, knocked off into the lava
  • The boss launches fireballs which are very hard to dodge and have a 95% chance of hitting you in a wild direction that knocks you off the platform
  • You get incapacitated and the boss kills Gretchen nigh instantly (I was not able to recover in time)
  • The boss uses a fire attack on Gretchen which slowly drains her health and surrounds her with lava, making it impossible for you to get to her and pick her up to heal her (this one is the MOST frustrating)
  • If by some chance you get her health all the way down successfully, there is a QTE that involves multiple button presses with pauses in between where cool action stuff is happening (but you better not look!). If you do not press the correct buttons within a split-second of them appearing on the screen, the boss gets about a third of its health back.

That last bullet point is a common thing between all the bosses in this game, and is insanely frustrating. I am not overestimating how quickly you have hit those QTEs to not fail! It was also at this point I did some googling about this fight (everyone agrees it is AWFUL) and learned that the button prompts are not randomized throughout the game...I probably should have looked up a guide with the buttons you gotta hit. But at this point I was too dejected to continue :(

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ToughShed

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#20  Edited By ToughShed

I just played way too much of Empire of Sin before bailing. The game seems great on paper and many of the individual parts seem quality, but the entire thing just doesn't come together in any cohesive way. There is no logical ramp up of the game, its all just laid out before you immediately and it all seems quite shallow, or at least with no idea or incentive on how to lay things out and develop the player experience in a way that reveals depth and how and why things work how they do.

Also, the combat is so paint by numbers and boring for a tactics game. It would be passable years ago, but now there are so many great tactics games.

Maybe it can be improved over time but it really seems like its too far gone.

Its too bad because this kind of gangster strategy game has always seemed like a great idea but this is now the 3rd one I've played like this that has been lackluster and shallow.

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Nocall

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Just finished ending B of nier automata and am about half an hour into playthrough C. I’m probably going to give it another hour or so, and if it doesn’t start being more engaging I’ll probably just watch a YouTube recap and move on.

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sweep

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#22 sweep  Moderator

Playerunknown's Battlegrounds.

Every time I think I'm done with that game, they pull me back in.

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SethMode

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I usually don't stick with anything I don't like anymore, because I value my time way more than when I was younger and would suffer through something for achievements or some such nonsense...or want to finish something I didn't like because I bought it and wanted my money's worth. So, saying that, the most recent single game I put over 100 hours into is Risen by Piranha Bytes, the console version. That distinction is important because I hear the PC one is actually pretty good. The console version was a technical mess and the combat and traversal felt like complete dogshit (the camera especially could not have the sensitivity changed and it was as if it was cranked up to 150), but I really liked the immersion of the world and (most of) the story. It was my first game by what I now consider my most beloved eurojank dev (I genuinely liked Elex, which doesn't have as many control issues on console as Risen did on consoles, but still was a technical crapshoot), but I could never in good conscience recommend that version to ANYONE. My wife would see me getting frustrated at times trying to manage multiple enemies while the camera jerked about and nearly made her motion sick, and would ask me why I kept playing.

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sparky_buzzsaw

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I saw credits on Matt Rorie's Alpha Protocol, and to this day, I'm still not sure why I played past the halfway point. Enchanted Arms, Blue Dragon... hm. I'm sure there have to be technically worse RPGs than those I've played to completion but I'm hard pressed to think of what they are.

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SethMode

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@sparky_buzzsaw: I played a ton of Alpha Protocol at the time on the 360 and refuse to ever return to it because time and nostalgia has erased all of the bad parts in my mind and all I really remember is the cool intrigue and story and particularly the ending I got where everyone was working for me.

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urban_ryoga

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I've made a habit of playing bad games on my extra life streams. I kinda dabble in some during the year I know I won't give that much time to. I think what inspires me to be masochistic about playing bad games (or games I have a gut feeling I won't like), is that I want to give a detailed answer as to why I don't like it. Either way it feels like catch-22, if you play a game to completion then someone will say your negative reaction to it is nonsense and you actually liked the game (don't get me started on Persona 5 or citizens of earth). If you play the game for 30 mins and give a detailed explanation as to why you didn't like it (most recent cases like that has been Audio Trip and Fae Tactics), then you are seen as either lying about time played or are told you hadn't played it enough to "get" it.

Although it hasn't come to play recently, Vinnyitis is another reason I play old bad games to completion. The best example of that is Shadow Hearts. There is some good stuff, but a lot of jank to that game. I bought it the same time as I bought Shadow Hearts Covenant. The first game came out early in the life of the playstation 2 and it shows. The second game came out in the middle of the life of the ps2 and... it shows.

Stuff I've played recently far too long:

Balan Wonderland (full demo)

Rodea the Sky Soldier (2 hours of the Wii Version, 1 hour of the Wii U version)

ffxv (briefly played the two SDCC demos, 1 of the psn demos, 5 hours of the full game)

Balan and Rodea came up about the same time. I was interested (and almost bought) balan wonderland based on the promo art alone. The demo is pretty extensive and also one of the worst games I've played in recent history. I should've stopped after the first stage, but I wanted to see if my opinion would change if I tried stages that didn't make me feel like I was about to throw up (apparently that got patched?), it didn't. It then lead me to unpack my wii u and try both versions of Rodea the sky soldier, which only lead to further disappointment (it makes me question if Yuji Naka as a producer and if it ever actually mattered).

FFXV is a game I've quit several times and games like it by square are not even close to my favorites. For clarification, I do not like the kingdom hearts series and I've had this impression with ff type-0, ffxiii, ffxv, and ffviiR that those battle systems (for lack of a better description) don't feel kinetic to me. That stuff happens and either it is impossible to fail or/and the gameplay doesn't have this feedback loop for me to understand if I'm doing something wrong, right, or optimally. While I've only played demos of the other ff games listed here (ffxii for like 2 hours and walked away from back to back ffxv demos at SDCC) I figured I'd play a final copy of ffxv to give a definitive response and I ended up turning it off after 5 hours. I don't like the party, I don't care about the vo in any language. I just don't like it. I played it to try and give a more qualified response as to why I like ffxii over literally any of the others and even that answer is confusing at a high level.

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Nodima

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@nocall: I'd be curious to see where you landed on this. For me, the C story was where the game started to diverge into properly difficult (playing on Normal) in a way that I found really annoying because the combat flow just never tricked me into enjoying it the way it did for some more "I want to dig into this game and understand it fully" oriented people. The A and B campaigns made it pretty clear to me that I could just hold the robot trigger and mash with my favorite weapons while watching robots go boom so that's what I did, and the sudden difficulty spike was more than a little frustrating for me. It wasn't too far into C when the combat reverted back to being pretty simple, but for a fleeting moment I was worried Platinum and Yoko Taro had forgotten what the actual good parts of their game were.

And for what it's worth, the back half of C and the way it all wraps up in E are probably the highlights of the game as a whole aside from all the proper "what the fuck" reveals of the A campaign.

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Efesell

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#28  Edited By Efesell

Like.. I guess FFXV. I think it's a game that has a lot to enjoy but is too hopelessly flawed to not be a bad game as well. But I still finished it and had a pretty good time.

I don't really continue to play things that are unpleasant to do so.

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bobafettjm

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@sparky_buzzsaw: Man, I really loved Blue Dragon a lot when it first came out. I have no idea if I would feel the same if I went back to it though. Enchanted Arms I also beat, but I can't really say too much positive about it.

I would say my game might be Two Worlds. I played a TON of hours of the first game on the 360 and I think I developed a liking for it despite it being a terrible game.

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krelmoon

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I played through the entirety of Demon Gaze on the Vita because it was cheep on a flash sale and was a game on the Vita. Pointless repetitive and merciless difficulty all for what seemed to be a H game with the H scenes omitted for an U.S. release. I got almost to the end before I discovered this. I just thought it was normal anime game horny till the relationships with all female characters went to sexy times. But it’s the only game I haven’t finished on the Vita led to a lot of bad games being played Demon Gaze was one I stuck with despite it being really bad.

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sombre

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#31 sombre  Online

I played over 1100 hours of Dota 2, and it's the worst MOBA on the market.

Poor balance (I stopped when they added Ember Spirit I think), an extraordinarily toxic community, a cult of personanity around awful pro players, and the fact the entire game was designed to pull as much money out of you as they can.

Honestly, if they added a mode where all the character models were their vanilla skin, I might play for a bit.

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Mezmero

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Worst recent eh? Significant time eh? I guess the most recent for me was One Piece: Pirate Warriors 4. I'd say PW 2 and 3 are two of my all-time favorite musuo games and probably the best One Piece games on the market (or not) for my money. Sure the fourth game has more characters and goes further in the story however it makes some really odd changes to the core mechanics and character combos that I found to be a net negative for the game as a whole. In a way it's weirdly meta in that I'm as displeased with these changes as I am with some of the mechanics of current day One Piece fiction. I mostly stuck with it because of how relatively easy the trophies were to unlock, the final one involving just grinding for money.

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ArbitraryWater

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I streamed all of Devil May Cry 2 for charity a few weeks ago, and that was after dealing with an hour of Mighty No. 9. I'm happy my suffering was apparently worth it.

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AV_Gamer

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I'd would say that Hello Neighbor is a recent example. The game is buggy, looks and feels unfinished, and you have no sense of direction or what to do in that game. Yet, for some reason, it has built up enough of a cult following over the time its been released that they're coming out with a sequel. Luckily, I played it on PS Now and gave up on it.

But another example I might be playing now is Marvel's Avengers on the PS5. I say might, because I'm replaying the good campaign mode and didn't get to the end game yet, where most of the complains are from. I can tell you already that I don't like the preset graphical settings much. You can either choose a 4K 30fps mode, which doesn't run and feel right at all, because it's not a smooth 30 frames. Or you can choose, I'm guessing 1440p 60fps mode. It runs fine, the problem is the presentation is filled with lots of motion blur and strong depth of field making the game look overly blurry in some spot and you can't turn it off like on the PC. Good thing I'm also playing it on PS Now.

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Onemanarmyy

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#35  Edited By Onemanarmyy

Hmm Normality i guess? Technically it sits in that awkward early 3d period that didn't age fantastically. On top of that the puzzles are not great and despite looking like a goofy game, it's not really a game that makes you giggle neither. But it does have a very zany look you didn't really see back then. It only really reminds me of more modern games like Jazzpunk, Sludge Life and Umurangi Generation. It's just one of those games where the boxart sticks with you throughout the years and you keep wondering what the hell was up in that game.

Number 2 is probably Do not Feed The Monkeys. Eventhough i really enjoyed that game (like 8/10) and 100%-ed it, there are so many flaws to it that could easily be dealbreakers if you're not really into the game. First up, this game requires you to buy a certain amount of camera-feeds every week. These camera feeds are opportunities to gain benefits that helps you in the resource management part of the game (money, sleep, food). But pretty much 50% of the feeds are just... non-interactible feeds that give you nothing of value. A bummer. Especially when you think that there has to be a way to interact with these screens. Surely if i decide to watch this one feed for 24 ingame hours, there's a moment where this green button turns red right? Surely there's a moment where i can interact with this priest that fakes his own death right? Surely i can help this political prisoner right? Nope. All the while, you wasted valuable time learning that these feeds are useless to you.

This also means that the story-flavor of each game-run is pretty much decided by only 50% of screens, of which certain feeds can only show up later in the game. Which means that now you're pretty much in a position where there are only like .. 3 different important feeds to care about in the early game. Will you get the pervert photographer, the museum exhibition or the resistance leader-feed? And while you might think that at least that means that all these scenario's are beefy, think again! There are definitly 3-ish interactive scenes where there's just not all that much to be done, and you can solve the storyline within a day or 2.

This is especially annoying because if you are really into this game, you're supposed to play it over and over again to try to unlock alternative endings to these storylines and hoover up some more achievements. But there's just not enough writing in this game to make each 'run' feel novel. Once you know the ins & outs of each scene, you just bulldoze through this game waiting for that one opportunity to get a new achievement.

Finally, there's an achievement that requires you to interact with a certain feed 3 days in a row. Problem is, this feed most often pops up 2 days before the end of the game, which means that you straight up can't see this storyline finish nor get the achievement. Luckily there's a small chance it pops up after 7 days, which meant that i completed the entire game except for this one achievement and then found me restarting the game like 4 times, playing up to day 7, check if i got lucky, and restart the game if this particular feed didn't pop up. That said, i did overall enjoy my time with this game somehow. I'm a sucker for story-driven interactibles like this, Orwell & Beholder

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Giant_Gamer

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#36  Edited By Giant_Gamer

As of late I found myself unable have this kind of patience anymore. However, I would say let it die.

The gameplay was awesome but the cruel f2p farming requirements have forced me to instantly uninstall the game after realising that I'm on the wrong equipment upgrade path at the 50th floor so i had to start over again.

Still, I wish we get a let it die 2 that is fully priced and doesn't have pay/farm walls.

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imunbeatable80

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Hmmm.. honestly i cant think of a single bad game i have ever played. But all the games people have listed are being added to a list for future playthroughs.

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Playing through the first Oddworld - got the first 4 games in a deep Steam sale years ago and with the new one coming out, I thought, "why not..."

I don't want to hate on it too much, but there's a lot going on that aggravates me. For starters, the game is built on so much trial and error. I don't oppose this unilaterally, but the checkpoints can be pretty stingy. At the very least it should save your progress after clearing a secret area - having to clear those over and over whenever you die is a real pain. I like the prerendered animation style they go for, but as a casualty, I never feel like Abe reacts as quick as I want him to. When the game doesn't read my jump inputs during a punishing chase sequence and I get sent back 5 minutes, I get pretty steamed. I don't know to what degree the issue is caused by the programming itself, the PC port, or my imagination, but I just don't vibe with it as much as I had hoped.

As said in the OP, I definitely have a terminal case of Vinnyitis. Needing to play game series from the beginning has caused me to lose interest a number of times (looking squarely at Kingdom Hearts). In the case of Oddworld, who knows - I hear the second game has quicksaving, and the other two are different enough where I could still try them out. I'm sure I won't buy the remakes. I need to get out of the mindset of playing games just because they are "important" or that I want to say I have played them. I'm about to lose a lot of free time for gaming, and I need to prioritize better. For instance, I'm playing Forza Horizon 4 on PC and having an absolute blast - every part of that game is cultivating an atomsphere of pure dopamine. I need more of that, and less "homework."

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Daavpuke

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I play mostly mobile games lately, so a ton of them are terrible, but I feel like that's the expectation for most of them.

I guess the worst offender recently would be The Last of Us.

I got swept up in the hype of the second and decided to give number one a shot. From start to finish, what an absolute shit heap. I do feel better about the production value, now that I don't need to play it, but every second I had my hands on it was the most insulting shitshow of a game I can recall and I love playing terrible bullshit. Safe to say I'll never feel the need to play Part 2.

Scott Pilgrim vs The World. Same mistake, which I definitely need to stop doing. Heard about the release. Played the original. Quit after two hours, because it's the worst beat em up in my collection, by a stretch.

I also completed the GB games Barbie: The Princess and The Pauper, as well as Disney's Cinderella: Magical Dreams, because they take about two hours each to do, so why not. The former is okay-ish.

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Onemanarmyy

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#40  Edited By Onemanarmyy

@jeremyf: I had the same experience with Oddworld. Tried that first game probably like 3-4 times, but it just doesn't do anything for me. I checked out Strangers Wrath a few years ago and i still had a blast with that one. So definitly try that out if you still think that there's something to the world of Oddworld.

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FacelessVixen

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I suppose Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet counts because of the zeitgeist around SAO. As someone who doesn't know much about SAO aside from it's concept of being an MMO in VR, and has certain scenes that would give @sweep more ammunition (rightfully so), I kinda don't give a fuck about the core franchise, and I just like the game as "we have Phantasy Star Online 2 at home".

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AV_Gamer

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#42  Edited By AV_Gamer

I mentioned earlier about Marvel's Avengers. Well, I finished the campaign story of Kamala and I'm playing the end game. And I see what people are talking about. There seems to be a lot to do at first, but you quickly find many complication that were already brought up many times before: Like not being able to pick your chosen hero during online missions. I'm mostly going through missions with AI companions because of this. I want to max out Kamala and this setback will get in the way. Good thing the AI is pretty decent and is almost as good as having humans playing with you. There is also the fact you have to build up the Hawkeye and the Arrow Lady from zero power, which drains a lot of resources in leveling up gear to get within other heroes you've played during the campaign. I could go on, but yeah, the end game isn't great.

The sad thing is, like Destiny, the core gameplay is good and fun, but everything else around it is lackluster. The outfits you can grind for aren't that great. The name plates are decent, but kind of an empty goal to grind for. Collecting comics seems like such chore. The missions are repetitive, but this is true for most live service games. The trick is to make them seem like its not repetitive. Destiny, Warframe, and many other live service games have succeeded in doing this. The enemies are repetitive, yes they get tougher the more you level up, but still not many varieties. There aren't many super villains to fight outside of Taskmaster and Abomination. Even Killing Floor 2 started adding more major villains to fight overtime instead of the same two.

The main enjoyment from the endgame is to build up you chosen character and make out their stats. If you're not willing to do this, then there is no reason to play it. I will continue playing and getting the most out of it until it is removed from PS Now in late June I believe. But yeah, Crystal Dynamics can easily do what Bungie did with Destiny and fix their end game, but they clearly don't care outside of getting a quick crash grab and its very obvious. What a missed opportunity.

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sweep

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#43 sweep  Moderator

I suppose Sword Art Online: Fatal Bullet counts because of the zeitgeist around SAO. As someone who doesn't know much about SAO aside from it's concept of being an MMO in VR, and has certain scenes that would give @sweep more ammunition (rightfully so), I kinda don't give a fuck about the core franchise, and I just like the game as "we have Phantasy Star Online 2 at home".

I feel like you've tagged the wrong person :P