Do You Finish Your Games?

alphadog 101 Aug 19, 2011 at 16:20

When you buy and play a game that has an end, do you get there?

I know I often don’t, and never stopped to think about it. But, some of the reasons are:

  • The “Next Shiny Ball Of Foil” reason: I got mesmerized by another game in the middle of the one I am in. Drakensang got bumped by Witcher II, which will likely get bumped soon by Deus Ex 2.
  • The “Sadistic Dev Team” reason: The developers of that game show their sadistic sides by making the end unpleasantly hard to reach…
  • The dominance of games where you are a military, faceless grunt in a multiplayer killfest. (Yeah, I’m talking about you Call Of Unreal Battlefield Halos)
  • Those are usually my main reasons. Any others?

What does it say about MAKING games apart from the article’s obvious “make shorter-and-cheaper games with more DLCs”?

11 Replies

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Kenneth_Gorking 101 Aug 19, 2011 at 16:42

I make it a habit to always complete games, and from just glancing over the games I have on my shelf, my HD, and Steam, I can actually say I have completed them all. Some more than once. Some 8-9 times :)

Hell, I even completed Carmageddon 1 back in the day. There was something incredibly rewarding about slamming your car into a giant red button, and then seeing “Congratulations! It’s the end of the world!” printed across the screen. Ahh, simpler times :lol:

fireside 141 Aug 19, 2011 at 16:48

I feel like I’m grinding out hamburger with most of them. They’re all set up for short term rewards because of the short attention span of most of the players. They have all these side quests you don’t need to take, so it’s a tangled spaghetti type story that isn’t very interesting. They’re written for rabid gamers who don’t do anything but play games and everyone else just plays a small amount of it, get’s the idea, and moves on.

tobeythorn 101 Aug 19, 2011 at 16:54

When I read the thread title, I thought this was going to be about not finishing making one’s own game, I which case I’d have to admit that I never have…

As for other games, I’m usually stubborn and make it through whether or not i like the game once I’ve started. That being said, I have a few PS2 games that I haven’t finished because they never really hooked me in. I still haven’t beaten Killer7 even though I think it is an interesting and variably enjoyable game. I’m close to the end but some parts of it are just frustrating and difficult.

Man, I remember beating super mario for the original gameboy when i was a kid. No saves, so one had to do it in one sitting. That was insanely difficult.

Reedbeta 167 Aug 19, 2011 at 16:57

For me, with a new game I usually either quit playing within the first hour (because it’s too hard, or I don’t like the way it plays, etc.), or I finish it all the way to the end. There are quite a few cases where I got to some obstacle like a difficult final boss battle and put the game down for a long time, but I usually end up coming back to it and finishing it eventually.

For me, if I make it past the first hour the story momentum is usually enough to keep me playing. I think difficulty spikes are probably the main reason I quit a game after that point. There’s a segment of people who enjoy being challenged by a game, but I really don’t. I generally want story-driven games to be more forgiving, because for me the point of gameplay is to advance the story, not to train myself to be really good at the gameplay. For instance, if I die twice during a particular mission or checkpoint, I’d like the game to make it easier the third time, by nerfing the enemies or giving me more health or something.

Finales are really hard to tune for difficulty, because you’re walking a thin line: too easy and it doesn’t feel impactful / climactic enough, too hard and you frustrate players like me. On the other hand, there are plenty of other ways to create tension besides super-difficult bosses. The Half-Life series has several examples of good finales that are tense and climactic without too much of a difficulty spike. Aside from HL1, none of them is really even a “boss battle”, as you don’t directly fight a central villain.

alphadog 101 Aug 19, 2011 at 18:59

I usually don’t quit early, because the game designer in me wants me to really experience as much as I can, even if to learn multiple DDTs (a.k.a. don’t do that). However, I do want to experience many games, which probably leads me to favor not finishing.

I really get annoyed by the devs that feel bosses have to be even moderately harder than the rest of the game. If you have a story to the game, you don’t want to make the ending impossible; it’s just torture.

TheNut 179 Aug 19, 2011 at 21:10


Man, I remember beating super mario for the original gameboy when i was a kid. No saves, so one had to do it in one sitting. That was insanely difficult.

I remember when I beat Mario for NES I was really looking forward to an awesome ending. When I saw the game world load up a second time with different enemies, I was cussing ;)

The only game I haven’t finished yet is GTA 4. I’ve been playing that game on and off for about 2 years now and I think I reached the last mission a couple months ago. The game is way to long for me, and usually that’s a killer for me. At some point I demand to see things wrapped up and move on. I almost gave up on Dragon Age for the same reason, although I painfully dragged my way to the end.

I mostly buy simple games now, indie type stuff off Steam. They’re quick and fun, which works well for my schedule. My brother has never finished a single game though. It’s kind of funny.

_oisyn 101 Aug 19, 2011 at 22:01

I’ve pretty much finished every game with a story that I own, with the exception of a few misbuys that I ended up disliking. I like a challenge, so I don’t really have any games that I stopped playing because they were just too damn hard, as long as they didn’t make it too tedious to try and try again. For example, I stopped playing True Crime: Streets of LA because of a mission pretty much early on which I just couldn’t get passed in a few tries. I’d try harder, if it were not for the fact that when you died you spawned on the other side of the city and had to drive back every freaking time. And I didn’t like the gameplay that much anyway, so I never looked at it again.

However, Super Meat Boy for instance, awesome stuff. Some worlds are insanely tough to get through so you have to try and try and try. But that’s the whole essence of the game, so they’ve made it as pleasant for you as possible - instant respawn. No menu’s, no loading times, no number of lives that wear out, you don’t even have to press a button. If you die, you simply immediately try again. If a game’s like that, I can be very, VERY, persistent.

Funny thing, I dug Super Meat Boy back up a couple of weeks ago. I finished the story last year, but if you complete each world within a set time limit you unlock the accompanying “dark world” that’s even tougher. Also, you can unlock extra characters by grabbing bandages hidden throughout the worlds (usually in very hard to reach places). So I set out to compelete it 100% (I’ve currently 100%ed the first 4 chapters and the light worlds of the 5th chapter, I’m halfway through the dark worlds of the 5th). Don’t know if any of you played it extensively, but man, that 5-1 warp zone where you can unlock “The Kid”, Jesus Christ that was hard, pardon the profanity. It took me about 4 hours to get through these 3 screens (when you die - ie, touch any spike or fall out of the screen - you go to the beginning of that particular screen). I recon I retried more than a thousand times. But man, the euforia when you actually make it to the end. Priceless!

Super Meat Boy had been worth every penny even if it just contained that single world. In comparison, it’ll cost you 5 times as much to buy modern warfare, which you will finish in just about that same timespan or maybe just twice as long, after which you will utter nothing more than a single “meh” when you actually finish it.

rouncer 104 Aug 20, 2011 at 06:35

I thought you were talking about making them, and to date the answers absolutely no, i havent finished a project for at least 11 years, and thats the entire time ive been doing programming.

hopefully it might change soon tho. ;)

smayragrace 101 May 05, 2012 at 16:29

Yea Almost many Games I have finished Now a days….I am a bigger fan of Games and I have played so many games in mine life…from Mine childhood Mario is the one game That is mine all time favorite….So many Games I have finished like Mario and Angry Birds….

Vilem_Otte 117 Jun 05, 2012 at 00:53

As for Playing games:
I mostly finish every one I start - though I really start playing just good and high quality pieces (I base my decision on reviews ofc), mostly RPG, but good Action, RTS or Adventure (or any other genre) is also worthy of buying + finishing. Recently I’m about to look on Risen 2 (as soon as I’ll find some time).

As for Making games:
I’ve done several, but smaller ones (mostly advertistment ones) … worked on larger ones as programmer (mostly indie and free ones) and currently working on first one (meaning like real large-scale game title) as company leader (and also programmer + whoever is needed right now :ph34r: :D - all indies know it) - I hope we’ll be successful in finishing this one :D.

Stainless 151 Jun 06, 2012 at 16:52

For me, I play a game until I am sure I have seen all it has to offer. That may be at the game, or at some point earlier.

I see no point in spending days trying to complete the last boss battle just to see a boring FMV with hundreds of names scrolling past.

Life is too short.

When it comes to finishing games I am writing, I’ve always finished every game I am paid to work on. If they stop paying me, that’s a different issue.