This Year's Worst Gaming 'Updates'

By Adam Ma on September 25, 2011, 2:28PM EDT

Ever feel like sitting down and enjoying a game or two right this very second? Nothing else matters, just you and whatever game it is you're looking forward to. It could be a newly released title, or a recent AAA game that simply got tossed aside because something else came up that was simply more pressing. Either way the game is in, it's loaded, and your controller/keyboard is ready to rock and roll. Only something goes horridly wrong. Instead of being able to access a new game, or an old save file, you're forced to endure a few painful moments of downloading.

Updates have been a mixed bag for modern gaming, allowing some developers to patch minor developmental errors while others simply release a title in it's incomplete state only to fix it when things have been finally released to the public. Here's a few updates over the last year or so that sometimes make us all ask why we even bothered to pay full price for a title to begin with. Or at the very least, why we aren't given heads up?

Resistance 3's Disastrous Launch

This may not be a problem that's exclusive to Resistance 3, but amazingly long install times followed by install errors and potential install-related freezing is a nightmare that no gamer should have to endure. On one hand it does allow for some gameplay bonuses, but there's just something to be said about having to wait anywhere from five minutes to an hour to be able to play a brand new title.

Resistance 3 recently took the cake for having an install time that for some people, took close to 40 minutes. This was then followed by a patch that immediately took another 20 minutes to resolve. There's nothing wrong with needing to do an extra thing or two before jumping into an experience, but there's a certain line that needs to be drawn here. Having to suffer through a mandatory hard drive install is bad enough, but launch-day bug fixes or content additions that should have made it in before the title was shipped? It's like being forced to pay for your own torture.

Deus Ex's Fantastic Advertisements

The only thing worse than having to download an unexpected and unexplained update is finding out that the mandatory download only makes the game worse. Such is the case with Deus Ex: Human Revolution, where the first major PC patch brought along more than just a few bug fixes. It also brought along the power of advertisements to the loading screens. It's almost as though the developers knew that only a few days into their game, players would be so thoroughly addicted to making life or death choices, sneaking around security bots, and augmenting themselves, that without aid their entire fan base would die at their PCs. Now, when loading up a new game or accessing old save gamers, you'll be reminded that going out to get a burger, or purchasing the Star Wars special edition Bluray would be alright to do as well.

What's baffling isn't just that the developer decided this is something that had to be in the game, it's something that had to be implemented post-release. Did they think that launching the game with ads would be too offensive for some to handle, so they made the decision to release it after everyone had made the mistake of purchasing? Regardless, gamers are subjected to enough third party messaging as it is without someone tossing it in between loading screens. Hopefully Capcom doesn't catch wind of this, otherwise we could be looking at Dairy Queen promo's during the character select stage of new fighting game.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Adding/Removing Game Modes

How much could it possibly cost the world's most popular FPS title on the planet to host a few additional game modes? Apparently a lot, because since playing the game there have been quite a few additions/removals that don't make a lot of sense. It's hard to rationalize a developer taking the time to include a particular playlist only to have it removed, unless there were only five-ten people enjoying said list on the planet. Since its launch Black Ops has been pretty notorious for the addition and removal of game types with virtually no explanation. Particularly in Hardcore, which already features a pretty bland matchmaking selection. It's a pretty cruel reminder that a title may not quite be the exact same game from launch a few months down the line, and though many of these changes are due to player feedback one must wonder why they don't simply keep in as wide a selection as possible.

Then again this is coming from the same development team that has almost mastered making Nuketown appear in every other map choice. Variety must not be Treyarch's strongest subject.

Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3's Existence

What's better than having fans wait ten years to get a sequel for a beloved fighter? Having them only wait a few months to get the next installment.

Sure, UMvC3 isn't technically a content update by traditional means, but taking a look what the game will boast compared to MvC3 it's easy to understand why most fans are insulted. Characters that should have been thrown in at launch, DLC characters missing from the new version and game modes that were suggested to be in; these are all being added as premium features for a title that launched as close to bare bones as possible. Most would call that dirty business, but Capcom has decided to go with 'Ultimate' instead.

It's also fair to mention that this new game will also feature this amazing content at a full retail price, something that they've held off from doing with their Street Fighter franchise but feel that it's appropriate to do for MvC. Perhaps it's the expensive Marvel licensing that prompts such an amazing retail tag, but that hasn't stopped a lot of fans from voicing some outrage over the cost. Perhaps Capcom is better off taking a page from Deus Ex and tossing in some ads for Mad Catz to lower the price tag. I don't think too many would mind seeing a fight stick promo in between matches, maybe in the background floating about ominously.

Dead Island's Disaster Release

A game being launched with online compatibility issues, or game-crashing bugs isn't really uncommon these days. And yes, it's bad practice to release a title untested just to make a launch date, or to adhere to some sort of publisher pressure. But releasing the wrong version of a game entirely?

Dead Island takes the cake for its Steam release, somehow managing to launch the wrong version of the game out there for gamers to take part in.
It's the kind of situation that you would imagine some sort of quality control exists for, and though the problem was solved quite quickly, Dead Island's reputation took a fairly large hit in the face. It was made even worse when the 'save file deleting' bug happened.

If it's any consolation, Steam did again locate what the problem was fairly quick, but these are still the kinds of issues you never expect to run into. There's nothing like having to install the same game twice to make you wonder what you're spending some well earned money on.

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