Things that I hate in games

Hi guys, let’s go on a rant about things that I hate in games!

By all means, a game isn’t bad if it features it, but man it can make it a hell of a lot worse!

If anyone can think of anything else they hate and primary examples, go right ahead!

Rusty Bucket Bay Banjo Kazooie

I’m looking at you Underwater Levels!

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Underwater

Underwater levels – the utter worst

1) Underwater Levels

Of course underwater levels have a place in this list. They make me want to cry! The mechanics are usually different, you have to find a way to breathe and they are full of nasty things.


  • Sonic games – Tell me that the Sonic running out of air music isn’t the worst thing you’ve ever heard
  • Banjo Kazooie – The freaking 3rd level is an underwater level! This is why I never got far past it! There is also the infamously difficult level Rusty Bucket Bay which I’ve actually never played!
  • Ratchet and Clank – Blackwater City. FUCKING. You know the bit!
  • Devil May Cry – The first game randomly throws and underwater (not to mention FIRST PERSON) segment at you from nowhere! That was no fun!
  • Mario Games – Everyone hates underwater levels in Mario!
  • Kingdom Hearts – The Little Mermaid level is no fun! Urusula was one of the bosses that I got really stuck on! To a lesser extent, Kingdom Hearts 2 and the fun game of “Let’s Find Sebastian” … yeah.
  • Prince of Persia Warrior Within Dahaka Chase Sequence


    2) Chase Sequences

    Chase Sequences make my palms sweat. They expend mostly no talent for playing the game except “run without bumping into something” or “wiggle your joystick under your hand falls off”. Instant Death if you lose though!


  • The Prince of Persia: Warrior Within. The freaking. Dahaka. The whole point of this game is that he is getting chased by this unstoppable death monster and yes, you do have to run away from it. Not just run, but jump, climb, swing on ropes and avoid other death!
  • Devil May Cry 3 – Not only is this in the most horrible level of the game (the insides of a whale that your brother summoned to kill you) it’s just… it freaks me out. I have to get my girlfriend to play it.
  • Ratchet and Clank – Blackwater. Again. The same bit as above. It’s not a thing that’s chasing you just… the water…
  • Deadly Premonition – Never played this game, but there are some chase sequences that involve intense joystick wiggling and Quick Time Events to escape!
  • Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin – Very near the beginning of the game you are chased by a massive boss monster. Later, you actually fight it as a boss.
  • Bloodrayne – If I remember correctly there is a part where you are running away from dozens of daemites. It was awful.
  • Silent Hill: Shattered Memories – All the action sequences are effectively chase sequences. They’re not too bad but if you’re alone and playing in the dark…
  • Final Fantasy VIII – The Mechanical Crab! Can you kill this thing? I think you probably can but …
  • Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone – running away from that Troll! Pretty funny cutscene before hand though.
  • Ratchet and Clank Blackwater City Water

    The worst sequence in any game ever!

    3) Timed Segments

    I’ve learned with a lot of games that timed sequences are usually adequately enough time for you to progress through the part you need to do, but they still make my palm sweat and it’s gross. Some of these, you have to do multiple time over and over until you get it perfect.


  • Ratchet And Clank – BLACKWATER. The deal is, you have to run through a segment full of enemies, full of jumping puzzles as the water rises. If you don’t get out, you drown. By this stage, Ratchet has no underwater gear – he is slower in water and will drown. The amount of times I had to try this is UNREAL BRO.
  • Final Fantasy Games (specifically VII-IX) – They seem to love throwing random timed segments at you. Because it’s an RPG, random encounters can seriously fuck with you. Oh and let’s not forget Final Fantasy X-2 where the FINAL BOSS is timed. Generally the timing is pretty generous in these games.
  • Trauma Center – Justified in the fact that you are playing a surgeon and you know, if you take your time they might die. HOWEVER. If someone has one minor injury and the clock runs out? They still die! Fuck you! As if I couldn’t have continued for 30 seconds longer!
  • Advance Wars – I’m learning recently that they like to occasionally throw timed things at you. Real-time as well. This is a turn-based strategy! Fuck off!
  • The Legend of Zelda Series – These games can sometimes be real torment to play with the sound off. Consider that I’ve mostly played the portable ones. You hit a switch, a door opens, yay! You get to the door and it’s shut. OH. I had to hurry. Fuck off!
  • Banjo-Kazooie – Honestly, I recall there were a few “hit the switch and run” sequences in this game. Yep.
  • Final Fantasy VII Cloud Subconcious


    4) More than half an hour of not playing the game/WHY DOES THIS INTRO TAKE SO LONG

    Seriously? You’re going to dump THAT much exposition on me? You have serious story-telling issues! I love a good plot as much as the next man, but really…


  • The Final Fantasy Series, particularly FFVII and FIX – Remember when we went inside Cloud’s Subconsious? Remember Ferrying Characters from Cutscene to Cutscene in FFIX? That is not how we play games! The Intro to FFX was so goddamn long. I thought I knew how to play the game and ALONG COMES ANOTHER CHARACTER GIVING YOU A TUTORIAL. XII’s intro is very cutscene heavy too.
  • Persona 4 – Seriously good game, but some seriously bad pacing issues! You don’t properly play the game for about 2 HOURS because the intro is just that long! Oh, and if you fuck up an get the bad endings? You get to mash through about 20+ minutes of gameplay every time! Persona 3 possibly had this issue too but I don’t actually remember.
  • Kingdom Hearts and KH2 – Why didn’t they let me skip cutscenes in this game?! If you fail an important boss be prepared to watch the preceding cutscene OVER AND OVER. In Kingdom Hearts 2 the intro is 3 hours long. Sure you might get to control a character but it is not FUN.
  • Advance Wars – Not the series as a whole, but I recall the Intro for the first game went on forever. There is a good reason – to get you used to the gameplay and the units, but there are tons of ways to do this and this is not one of them.
  • Lord of the Rings Fellowship of the Ring Dark Black Rider

    Well you got found and now you die

    5) Games where saving at the wrong time can screw you over

    Saving is usually a pretty safe thing to do. But sometimes if you save with too low health and no chance to turn back you’re screwed and have to start your game all over again.


  • The Fellowship of the Ring – I saved jusssst before getting spotted by a Black Rider. This is a game over.
  • Persona 3 – If you save too close to an impending boss without having leveled up enough… have fun defeating it without restarting your game. Never happened to me but…
  • Persona 4 – Saving a New Game Plus and realising “hold on, I never did get to fuse that last Persona” and realising that you’ve totally missed the true ending
  • Max Payne 2 – You can save anywhere. Including, I imagine, just before dying.
  • Silent Hill – Saved close to a boss but without much health or ammo? HA, good luck beating that thing with your steel pipe.
  • The Prince of Persia – Sands of Time – Saved somewhere with very low health and have to fight some enemies soon? Yep. I thought I’d screwed by game over because I saved before doing a jumping puzzle with very low health.
  • Fire Emblem – Have you let a lot of characters die? Did you let a really good character die? Good luck with later levels.
  • FFIII Final Dungeon Crystal Tower DS

    3 hour final dungeon no save points

    6) Having to play the game for more than an hour with no save points

    This usually comes with everyone who has offended me for “30+ minutes of no gameplay. But this is worse because you have played. And played. And PLAYED. And sometimes done a really hard bit. But you can’t save. Not until this bit is over. This is a great offender in portable games.


  • Final Fantasy III – No save points in Dungeons are you kidding me!? Consider that this was ported to the DS – it’s supposed to be picked up for 15 minutes and played and then put back down again. The Final Dungeon is 3 hours long! So if you fail the final boss, well fuck you you get to play that all over again!
  • Final Fantasy X – Seriously, some of the levels (Mount Gagazet…) had a long time between save points. And they were really hard.
  • Atlus games – I love Atlus, really! But their games are hard. You can run into a random encounter fully healed and still die on the first turn. Sometimes it is AGES between save points. Particularly thinking of SMT III here but also The Digital Devil Saga.
  • 7) Stealth in non-stealth games

    Suggested by Steve Morgan whose homepage doesn’t rank for [Steve Morgan] so let’s help out with that shall we? – seriously everyone hates these parts of games. Why would you make me do a stealth bit. I’m playing an RPG, I don’t want to have to precisely move my analouge stick when the whole game I’ve been pressing directional buttons and the action button to select movements. Don’t make me do it!


  • Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII – as seen above
  • I believe Dirge of Cerberus had that Cait Sith part… I’ve not actually played it so…
  • Final Fantasy XII had that part when Vaan had to sneak around some guards or something… it wasn’t too hard but come on, I want to beat some people up. But at this stage in the game you’re too weak so…
  • I’m actually pretty sure that Shadows of Almia tried to add a stealth part! What the heck, this is a game about drawing circles around Pokémon, don’t you try and stealth me!
  • Oh yeah, any stealth in Max Payne – I’m here to blow heads off, not to be stealthy! Gimme my gun back! Particularly remembering the baseball bat part in the first game.

    1. Steve says:

      Awesome post, Em. I remember reading it when you first published it but decided to re-read it again after stumbling back onto your site :-)

      My pet peeve – sneaking/spy sequences in non-sneaking/spy sequence games. Fair enough if you’re a fan of Metal Gear Solid games, but I remember that randomly in the middle of Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core you had to sneak into a base. The gameplay for that bit was completely different to the rest of the game, but it was also really, really hard. You can’t fight them – if you get caught, you have to redo it and keep trying. I can’t remember how I did it in the end (I probably cheated!) but I got so annoyed because I failed at so many attempts, haha! This is the bit I mean BTW:

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