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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Tomb Raider - broken QTE

I've been curious about the recent Tomb Raider release, and lucked out when I saw a copy of the PS3 version at my local library. I thanked my lucky stars and snatched that bad boy (or bad girl?) right  up real quick, scampering on back home to my game playing cave (A.K.A. my living room)

It's very cinematic. I haven't played many Tomb Raider games,  I only have Tomb Raider Anniversary (PSP), which I never really played much of. So I'm more or less new to the franchise, and this is a good introduction.
My main gripe so far, and it's a serious, perhaps game breaking problem - - the QTEs (quick time events). Specifically, the one where you have to waggle the left analog stick left and right really, REALLY fast.

This is a huge problem in the game, as it uses this L analog waggle QTE a *LOT*. I don't know how it is for Xbox 360 but on PS3, it is NIGH IMPOSSIBLE to waggle it fast enough using my left thumb. Not even my whole left hand. No, I have to place the middle of palm of my ENTIRE RIGHT HAND onto the L stick and SHAKE it back and forth like an insane person just to do the QTE. And then switch back fast enough when there are QTE button presses. It is so ridiculous.

Did *NO ONE* at Crystal Dynamics PLAY this game on a PS3??? Seriously. This is an EGREGIOUS, game breaking problem that never should have made it to the finished game.

I've tried using the right analog stick. No good. I've tried pinching the left stick between my thumbs and fingers to be able to shake it enough, again no good. It seems to have to be literally LEFT and RIGHT stick movement. Left and right really, really fast. I'm afraid if I have to do these stupid QTEs too much I'll break my Dualshock 3.

UPDATE: I found that rotating the left analog stick in a counter-clockwise circle can sometimes work.

This left analog stick problem RUINS Tomb Raider. It almost completely destroys what is otherwise a cinematic, smooth adventure game. And shame on all the high reviews who don't mention this enormous issue.

And Quick Time Events in general-- now there's a STUPID, overused game mechanic of the last 2 years or so. It is being used so cheaply and in almost every console game today... this unimaginative game mechanic needs to die die die already. How completely lazy are game designers that they have to copy gameplay from God of War? Actually, this goes back to Dragon's Lair. And NO ONE ever uses that game as an example of fun gameplay.

Dear game developers: ENOUGH WITH THE QUICK TIME EVENTS ALREADY. It is beyond over-used. Knock it off, and actually try to think up some new, ORIGINAL gameplay ideas. Or even if they aren't necessarily new, gameplay mechanics that are FUN. No one thinks QTEs are fun. So stop overusing them.