Some of the worst controls in an AAA game

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Octaslash

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With the exception of Max Payne 3, Rockstar games have always had odd control scemes. It was more acceptable in the PS2 era, but even when San Andreas came out, its weird lock on, drive by shooting, and tapping-to-sprint felt weird.

So, in the year 2018, how the fuck do we still have a game where you hold a face button to run? Am I supposed to play claw style like this is Monster Hunter on PSP or is slowly walking in a combat encounter intended? Could more than one speed not be mapped to an analog stick?

Also, is my TV broken or is there almost half a second of latency when I try to aim at anything? I understand why it defaults to lock-on controls if the aiming feels this terrible.

Of course, these are all problems Rockstar fixes with their PC releases. I am just very disappointed they haven’t fixed their console games yet and are stuck in the early 2000s.

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Efesell

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You can turn on a toggle for running while on foot.

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Octaslash

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@efesell: I noticed the toggle, but you still have to tap to sprint and it only works on foot. I ended up swapping A and RB on the system level, but not having a remap option in the game makes it very annoying.

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KillEm_Dafoe

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You can change control styles in the settings. I have it set to Standard FPS so it maps sprinting to the analog stick and crouch on X (or A on the Xbox). Obviously the game still plays sluggishly but I found that this helped improve things quite a bit.

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BrunoTheThird

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#5  Edited By BrunoTheThird

The aiming is def iffy; holding buttons to loot is terrible and always has been, way too slow; holding L3 to calm your horse is pretty awkward, as is clicking both sticks at once for focus mode or whatever; holding R1 to slow your horse is another weird choice, why not a face button? Why is the PS4 touchpad not the map but unique camera controls instead? I also keep jumping accidentally 'cos use is on the same button, which is always a pet peeve of mine.

This game just feels really weird to play.

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Shiftygism

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The visuals are amazing, but man nearly everything this game does gamelay-wise....some other open world game does better, whether it's shooting, hunting/tracking, or general traversal. Also, the inventory system is a pain from the inconsistency of having to retrieve your weapons from your horse to the tedious animations of picking everything up individually....y'all better cross your fingers Bethesda doesn't get inspired by that shit for Elder Scrolls VI. Also, the apparent lack of options such as human shield/weapon knockout makes certain situations impossible or not worth the risk of reward. Hopefully I'll become more forgiving as my time with the game goes on but right now certain things are sticking out.

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Efesell

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I love the looting to bits though, it's very satisfying for some reason.

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Octaslash

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I didn’t notice the alternative control scenes before and that relieves a few of my issues. Oddly enough, you also move faster in first person mode.

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Ares42

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@brunothethird: Yup, the incessant infestation of hold button prompts in triple A games is just mind boggling to me. Like, I get that it makes sure people don't things by accident, but how many times would anyone be in a situation where they mistakenly skinned an animal when they didn't intend to ? It's just a surefire way of making your game feel sluggish (although I guess in this case that might've actually been intended).

I also clicked the touchpad for the map an endless amount of times yesterday. Think I finally got it out of my system today.

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NeverGameOver

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#10  Edited By NeverGameOver

I'm only a few hours in but honestly not really feeling it. Everything about the controls is just far too slow. I'm sure it was a design choice, but that doesn't excuse it from simply being a bad one. Baffling to me that this game has a 97 on metacritic. There wasn't one critic annoyed by this?

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Octaslash

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#11  Edited By Octaslash

Okay, so after playing around with the shooter control sceme, I realize you can tap the left stick button once to run and then tap it again to sprint (it doesn’t tell you that). I still wish it was mapped to a shoulder button or just used the analog stick to its fullest potential (thank you newest Assassin’s Creed), but this makes the game more playable.

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Shiftygism

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#12  Edited By Shiftygism

@ares42 said:

@brunothethird:

I also clicked the touchpad for the map an endless amount of times yesterday.

Same, wish we could map stuff like that.

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xanadu

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Idk what it is about me that just accepts whatever control scheme is presented in front of me. I never had a problem with witcher 3 or other games.

Also rockstar controls have always been bat shit crazy but I guess since I play them way too much I've gotten use to it.

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pompouspizza

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#14  Edited By pompouspizza

I can completely understand why this game is going to be so divisive and I can’t argue with anyone complains about how slow everything is but I really love the way the game feels.

I absolutely love the feel of the weapons and the shooting but I’m probably not the best person to ask because I’ve never had a problem with the shooting in rockstar games.

I really wish the game would pause when text pops up explaining things because I end up missing things all the time, and they seem to have gotten rid of the brief option from past games that would let you go back and read it what you missed.

It’s a very overwhelming game and it’s taking me a while to get to grips with all the systems (I still have no idea how I get the camp resources out of the red) but having said that, I’m really happy to play nothing but this for the next month and just get lost in it)

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Octaslash

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@pompouspizza: It’s not so much the feel of the movement or actions that bother me. I don’t mind the weird animation priority or the slow, detailed looting animations. My issues are with how it’s all mapped to the controller and the extremely high latency on camera movement/aiming.

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Humanity

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Like a few posts above, I can completely understand the complaints and there is really no way to defend them - butafter having played several hours of this game I think they just match the style of gameplay. Everything in RDR2 is very slow and deliberate by choice and it's definitely not the sort of game where you run over corpses in circles mashing A to pick up loot which just magically appears in your inventory. In any other game this would be annoying and to a certain degree it still is a bit annoying for me here, but I don't know why I guess the mood and the setting just kind of make me give it a pass - I'm used to it for the most part. It's sort of like a Kojima game where the industry has certain baked in standards, and Metal Gear games always used their own weird control schemes but I just went with it because usually they matched the gameplay.

So far my main complaint would be that I'll have to choose a weapon to start shooting it and even then there are times where I have it selected and Left Trigger doesn't bring up the aiming, instead I have to press the right trigger to "activate" the gun or something.

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BrunoTheThird

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#17  Edited By BrunoTheThird

If they had made certain quality of life changes before release and it didn't have these subjectively iffy control issues, no one would have said they wished the buttons made less sense, or wished the game was slower and more deliberate. I think what's annoying isn't the way the feedback and mechanics work per se, but the lack of customization options to tailor them to our individual preferences. The game is slow and realistic, that shouldn't change, it's one of its strengths, but I'd love some deeper options for sanity's sake.

I will get used to it, but I won't enjoy it, which is a bit lame. Otherwise, it's really growing on me by the minute.

@ares42 What's weirder about the 'hold button to do thing' is how you see the ring slowly fill until the prompt is triggered. How is that more immersive, seeing these hovering discs fill up arbitrarily? It's weird. Even reloading a checkpoint makes you hold 'X' for up to four seconds sometimes.

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pweidman

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The controls have bothered me too. Two things though, the SA pistols have to be cocked for every shot, hence the delay, same with the lever action rifles. Another design choice lending to the deliberate feel they're going for. Also, during the first 5 or so hours it seems the game is in tutorial mode and it plays extra sluggish...word is it smooths out later. Maybe someone farther along can corroborate, and maybe it's a skills/perks type of thing that you unlock as you progress. Definitely need more time in the game to be sure.

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rethla

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It really controlls poorly in every aspect.

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TheChris

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Do you still have the tap to sprint thing? Does your character still control like he's constantly drunk? Wish they could just copy the control schemes from Metal Gear 5.

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rethla

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@thechris said:

Do you still have the tap to sprint thing? Does your character still control like he's constantly drunk? Wish they could just copy the control schemes from Metal Gear 5.

The controls from Metal gear solid 1 would be an improvement.

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NTM

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#22  Edited By NTM

The only two things that bother me about the controls are that B (or circle) is both melee and reload, so I've accidentally punched a stranger in the face when I was actually trying to reload (could have been my fault and not the games, but I don't think so). And although somewhat negligible, I wished there was a way for the camera not to revert back to looking forward when I am on my horse and looking at vistas. If you move any, Arthur will look straight and I wish that wasn't the case. There's only an option to change look spring for up and down. In the first person, just like in GTA 5, sprinting is much better because with the left click he just goes full-on sprint with double tapping. He also just moves faster. I personally love the deliberate pace of movement. Obviously, you have to be into that sort of thing, but I think it'd be incorrect to call it bad.

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Kamui97

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@xanadu: Im the same way. Maybe its because im not much of a competitive or FPS guy, and maybe i haven't played enough games where the controls "feel good", but i dont usually mind different control schemes or notice sluggishness in controls as easily as most people seem to. with controllers too.

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pompouspizza

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@octaslash: yeah, it’s an odd control scheme for sure.

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conmulligan

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I don't mind the pace of the game or the deliberate animations but the controls really do feel unnecessarily obtuse.

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applegong

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I guess the controls get filtered through different animation layers, in a really deliberate style. Probably that's one of the reasons one can walk into hail of bullets and shrug it off like some mosquito bites because Rockstar doesn't want to punish gamers for wonky controls.

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devise22

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I feel like this has been an exclusively Rockstar problem for quite some time. Similar to how Bethesda games have their own type of quirks, annoyingly obtuse controls in Rockstar games have always been a thing. I tried to return to GTA 3 San Andreas etc, basically the entire PS2 era Rockstar and man. Bad controls mixed with bad missions loaded with fail states. They never were the studio that took the mechanical components super seriously. That isn't to say they weren't competent, but honestly it kind of feels like they are guilty of just doing whatever is considered standard in a lot of the gameplay mechanics side of things. Movement, shooting, driving, even mission design structure. I haven't tried this out yet, and I recall not hating RDR mechanically, but that was in 2011. But the way you describe it reminds me more of Metal Gear than Rockstar, and again, maybe this has always been the case. The older stuff I tried to return to was nearly unplayable from a mission standpoint, but you could still roam around those worlds.

I wonder if maybe this is just a case of them not updating that approach finally coming to bite them? At least obviously in your taste. But even from all the glowing reviews and thoughts on it, one thing that has seemed universal is the annoyance of the controls mixed with the intentionally slower style to playing. Those who adore the game seem to dismiss it often as a "you just got to get used to it" thing. Which realistically I don't know if that is entirely the case. I've seen a few good threads of people on Twitter trying to fairly state that critiquing the way it controls/handles isn't always going to be from people who don't like slow things. Something can be slow and still control well.

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NeverGameOver

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#28  Edited By NeverGameOver

For me, this isn't a Rockstar issue. It's a Red Dead Redemption 2 issue. I've never had an issue with Rockstar controls previously. Maybe it's just because I haven't played them recenrtly, and maybe it's just because I'm coming off Spiderman which is extremely quick and snappy, but I don't remember any of those games controlling at this snail's pace. It's so bad that over the last hours of gameplay, I've been constantly thinking about the other games that I'd prefer to be playing instead. I'm sort of tempted to pick up GTA V specifically actually, but I feel like I need to keep trudging on solely because I just wasted 60 bucks on this.

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Ares42

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@pweidman: Can't say I noticed any obvious change. There's a pacing change between directed content and open-world content (and most of the beginning is mostly directed), but that's permeated through the entire game and highly dependent on which one you focus on.

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Sahalarious

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I can see you not liking it, but these are not bad controls, just very different. Moving around in this game is a joy, there is a purpose to every single action you take and is a massive part of why I love it so much.

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The_Nubster

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If it's anything like GTAV or RDR, the slow pacing and awkward movement adds to the weightiness of the combat and makes killing people, honestly, kind of uncomfortable. And if it's anything like GTA5 again, then playing first-person is the right way to do it and I won't hear otherwise.

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mems1224

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I hate how people are trying to excuse the controls as it being more immersive. No, they're just shitty. Shooting and walking around just feel awful.

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Humanity

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@mems1224 said:

I hate how people are trying to excuse the controls as it being more immersive. No, they're just shitty. Shooting and walking around just feel awful.

Different games have different expectations and standards. I wouldn't expect the combat in Dark Souls to work like it does in Devil May Cry because thats not the kind of game it is. The animation priority heavy gameplay doesn't make the controls "awful" in Dark Souls, they're simply unique to that style of game. Similarly Red Dead 2 has a lot of weight behind all the movement that can feel sluggish but it's not necessarily awful - at least it isn't to me anyway - it's just the way the game behaves.

I mean it's definitely going to make plenty people crazy, but I don't think it's bad as much as it's not for everyone.

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Octaslash

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@humanity: The character movement can be excused, but I don’t think you can qualify unreasonablely high latency on everything (most notably, aiming your gun) as a style or gameplay choice.

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Humanity

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#35  Edited By Humanity

@octaslash: What do you mena by latency? I'm playing on a base PS4 and shooting feels fine to me. The last game where I felt a huge disconnect between pressing buttons and seeing stuff happen on the screen in the middle of combat was AC Origins. Red Dead seems fine - I'm able to get headshots regularly etc.

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mems1224

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@humanity: dark souls is responsive though. RDR2 is just needlessly sluggish and unresponsive when it comes to everything. If that was the intended design then its a bad design. That still doesn't excuse how awful the shooting is.

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Octaslash

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@humanity: There is a huge delay from when you push on the stick to when the camera actually moves.

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timberbarrackk

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If you find the game too slow that's a valid criticism but, for me, not a knock against the game since it's deliberate. I enjoy it, I find it actually refreshing in a sense.

It's like people wanting Cliff's Notes but this is clearly a Ken Burns documentary.

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Efesell

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@humanity: There is a huge delay from when you push on the stick to when the camera actually moves.

If you say so, I can't say I've noticed anything like this.

Like sure the movement is the Rockstar staple and it's divisive but you're describing a level of broken I'm not seeing.

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Humanity

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@efesell said:
@octaslash said:

@humanity: There is a huge delay from when you push on the stick to when the camera actually moves.

If you say so, I can't say I've noticed anything like this.

Like sure the movement is the Rockstar staple and it's divisive but you're describing a level of broken I'm not seeing.

Yah I can't say I've noticed massive delay like that at all. Aiming is pretty snappy to me.

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NeverGameOver

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If you find the game too slow that's a valid criticism but, for me, not a knock against the game since it's deliberate. I enjoy it, I find it actually refreshing in a sense.

It's like people wanting Cliff's Notes but this is clearly a Ken Burns documentary.

The fact that it's a design decision doesn't mean that it can't be a poor design decision.

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CrazyBagMan

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@mems1224 said:

I hate how people are trying to excuse the controls as it being more immersive. No, they're just shitty. Shooting and walking around just feel awful.

I'm about to sound like a joke. But that's your opinion. I feel the controls are spot on for what they're clearly aiming for.

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darthslughorn

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I keep accidentally punching my horse; the controls have some issues

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mems1224

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@crazybagman: well if they were aiming for a game that feels like fucking garbage then they nailed it. Mission accomplished

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lifejuice

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#45  Edited By lifejuice

I’m not a huge fan of the movement, but it’s gotten more bearable. The shooting is ripped straight out of GTAV. It feels less like shooting and more like I’m just waiting for the auto lock to kick in. It’s servicable, but not that fun.

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CurseTheseMetalHands

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Rockstar games have always controlled like janky, unrefined, sluggish, ill-conceived shit. Character movement, aiming/shooting, driving...none of it has ever felt good, and I doubt any of it ever will. Because Rockstar always gets a pass.

If I were a conspiracy nut, I'd swear they do it deliberately, because I have to spend several hours, non-stop, playing their fucking games in order to come to some sort of terms with how they handle, and then I have to force myself to not play anything but that game until I'm done with it, otherwise I slip back into remember how games should play, what smooth movement and shooting feel like, and it just pisses me off and frustrates me all over again when I go back to Rockstar's clunky shitpile nightmare. But when it comes to creating open world games, unfortunately, Rockstar is still top tier. And if you want to play in that world, you have to accept the garbage controls/handling.

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Milkman

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#47  Edited By Milkman

To me, it controls like a Rockstar game. I’ve played enough of their games to know what I’m getting into at this point. The movement is gonna be slow and weighty. There will kind of be lock on but it won’t really work right most of the time. And there will be some points where it will feel like your character has lost control of his limbs and you’ll just start bumping into shit.

I won’t say my time with Red Dead 2 has been completely without frustrations due to the controls. I’ve flown off my horse a few times for reasons I still don’t understand but I’m still loving my time with the game. There are parts where I love how deliberate all your movements are. I really appreciate the weighty controls especially during the quieter moments of this game, of which there are a ton. Walking around camp chatting with your friends or wandering around town feels great. Trying to navigate tight spaces on your horse feels less great but so far, I’ve been fine making that trade off.

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SirPsychoSexy

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I haven't had any real issues with the slow controls. It is either that or you get the super responsive unrealistic video game ass video game controls. I am fine with not running everywhere at 50mph and constantly bumping into anyone and anything like every other open world game. It feels good to play something taking a very different approach.

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LiquidPrince

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Rockstar games have always had ass controls. All of them. I realized that it was the primary reason I have never been able to finish any of their games despite having purchased damn near all of them since San Andreas. But I’m determined to finish RDR2, since RDR 1 was one of the only ones I almost beat and actually enjoyed. After I beat RDR2 I’ll be going back and beating the first one as well. Hopefully.

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BoOzak

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#50  Edited By BoOzak

@liquidprince: That Table Tennis game played pretty damn well but yeah, generally they feel a bit off. A lot of RDR2 feels like it was developed in a bubble. UI is the worst of it.