How long do you go before "Cheating" (game guides)?

Discussion in 'Console Games' started by atszyman, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    The Dallas 'burbs
    #1
    OK, I fight with the temptation to use online guides/walkthroughs with almost every game I play. It's worse now with every game being a 20+ hour epic endeavor. I could handle spending 10 hours initially on Super Metroid back in the day knowing I could pare my time down to under 3 hours with 100% of the items.

    Now with wife/kids/job and all those other responsibilities trying to suck away my free time, I'm hard pressed to find time to play games, much less spend hours on end exploring to find where I need to be. I've mostly avoided using walkthroughs recently. In the past I think I've been known to religiously use the guide as I played, a habit I know to be controversial.

    I used guides for Twilight Princess once for a puzzle in a temple, and once for a boss. Otherwise I usually read the entry for an area/quest after I had done it to make sure I didn't miss any items. I broke down this morning after spending about 30-45 minutes in Metroid Prime 3 last night, trying to figure out where to go, to at least figure out if I'm on the right track I only read far enough to make sure I'm in the right area, and a quick glance at where I'm supposed to find the path to move on, but no further.

    Where do you, personally, draw the line and look at the guides? How long do you have to wander about aimlessly/clueless, until you open search online, or open the book? How many times does a tough boss have to kick the snot out of you before you look for tips? Just interested to see other people's views on this sort of "cheating."
     
  2. zero2dash macrumors 6502a

    zero2dash

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2006
    Location:
    Fenton, MO
    #2
    I [borderline] 'never do it'.
    99.999% of the time I never do it.

    I only look at a guide after finishing the game maybe for a brief tip on finding a lost item or something like that if I have to collect all the items or a secret area I missed...something like that. General game wise - regular story..I don't look at anything. I've always been able to figure things out on my own.

    I think gamers are spoiled nowadays. :p

    I go back and play some of the older games and I am astonished that we (gamers) were able to finish some of those games with no help whatsoever. No maps, no faqs, no guides, no message boards. Try finding your way through Metroid or Kid Icarus, both games which have no map at all...it's insanely difficult. You have to rely on general direction and memory of what a particular area looked like and what areas connected to it and how they looked as well; just pure nuts. I wonder how I passed some of the games I did back in the day...Kid Icarus, Metroid, Zelda II...without maps. ;)
     
  3. Sky Blue Guest

    Sky Blue

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2005
    #3
    I know what you mean, I really dislike using guides but I have so little time to play games I don't want to spend an hour stuck in the same place.
    If I do use them it's only to figure out one spot I'm at.
    I never used a guide for Twilight Princess, and haven't so far for Prime 3.

    I don't see the point of using a guide throughout the whole game, makes the thing pretty useless imo.
     
  4. sb58 macrumors 6502a

    sb58

    Joined:
    May 14, 2006
    Location:
    Hades
    #4
    If i need it, i'll use it. but not until i'm sure i've tried everything.
     
  5. atszyman thread starter macrumors 68020

    atszyman

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    The Dallas 'burbs
    #5
    Of course those were the days when you knew 15 people at school who were playing the same game, and would talk about what you found last night. It also didn't hurt that you could go home from school and play for 3-5 hours every night with even longer sessions on the weekends. Luxuries I will not have again until the kids move out of the house...

    Yeah we're spoiled these days but of course even the epics only had about 2-3 hours of game play if you knew what you were doing, beating a game was a matter of weeks then, not months. It's not all that different though, instead of having to find the "expert gamer" at your school for tips you just have to google the game. The information was always sought and available, it's now just easier and more impersonal to obtain.
     
  6. echeck macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #6
    Like most here, I only use them when I've tried everything I can possibly think of.

    Of course there are those rare times that I want to advance the story and simply don't have the patience to sit and try to figure something out, when that happens I'll reference a walkthrough.

    My wife is there with me watching me play on every game except for sports games, so between the two of us we're usually able to figure things out.
     
  7. seenew macrumors 68000

    seenew

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2005
    Location:
    Brooklyn
    #7
    I used to if I got stuck, but I broke this habit with Prime 3. I didn't want anything spoiled, so I stayed away.

    If I've played a game before, I'll use a guide to develop a speed-run pattern, or find items I need. But I don't ever use guides the first time out.
     
  8. zero2dash macrumors 6502a

    zero2dash

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2006
    Location:
    Fenton, MO
    #8
    I didn't have too many friends at school myself, and I never had friends who played the same games at the same time I did. You were a lucky lad if that was the case for you. ;)

    I went through the games I mentioned 'blind'; no help whatsoever. Nothing but my adolescent wits in addition to a sugar-and-calorie filled energy consisting of kool-aid and doritos. :D

    Nah, don't think that way, that's not the case.
    You said "kids", plural obviously, so you've got 2+ for sure. A little worse off than me but not by much. (I have a [nearly] 3 year old daughter who likes playing games almost as much as her mom and dad. :D) The way I look at it is this - sure, you've got kids, they take away some of your time that you used to play games with. But remember, your kids will leave the house more than you think they do and you'll have less time with them than you think you will because eventually they will go to friend's houses, they will go play outside, they will have sleepovers at their friend's houses...they'll be gone more than you think. I tell my wife this all the time because she (like you) thinks we won't have time to ourselves until my daughter's away at college. ;) Not the case though in my mind...

    I'm sure though by the time those days arrive and my daughter is having play time at friend's houses, we'll be expecting child #2 so the whole cycle will start again. :D

    (I usually only play games either late at night after she's asleep or over the weekends late at night.)
     
  9. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #9
    I used to know a guy who would buy the newest Tomb Raider and a guide to go with it, totally ruining the exploration side of it.

    Last time I checked a guide was to find out the final armour in TP. I can't remember ever checking a guide or cheating before that. I find it disrupts the pace, unless you're pressed for time.
     
  10. Antares macrumors 68000

    Antares

    #10
    Remember the old Nintendo Experts phone line? I don't know if it still exists but Nintendo used to have a phone number you could call and ask a question about any Nintendo game and an "expert" would be available to answer it for you (for a fee). I used this a few times in the late 80's and early 90's...most notably with Final Fantasy 2, when I was stuck somewhere or couldn't find/get to a treasure. I always wondered how they could answer any question so quickly back then. I once saw a treasure somewhere and the guy was able to quickly tell me the step by step path to get to it. Fascinating. But , yeah, with online faq's, their jobs are now all defunct.

    As for today, I also don't have the time to endlessly explore until I figure things out. Puzzles, I almost always take the time to figure them out on my own. Otherwise, it defeats the purpose and fun of them. We need to exercise our brains, too, people! Anyway, if I ever use a guide or a faq, it's only if I exhaust all other options. That, or if I want to make sure I get any missed items, weapons, treasures, secret areas, etc.. If I had the same "endless" time like I did like when I was a kid, I would probably never use a guide...but that's not the case anymore.
     
  11. atszyman thread starter macrumors 68020

    atszyman

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    The Dallas 'burbs
    #11
    I had 2 good friends who were usually playing through the same games at the same time with me. As for some of the others there was always someone who I knew who had beaten the games and could offer guidance.

    Well with the 2, nearly 3 and 4.5 months, my time (while they're awake) is pretty much all taken up, even when play dates happen for the toddler, I'm still usually taking care of the 4 month old. I've been finding more time as we get the bed time issues taken care of but it takes it's toll on my sleeping if I get sucked into the games. I know in about 6 years we'll start having time as sleep overs and friends' houses come into the mix but if I want to finish current games in a timely manner sometimes I break down and use a guide or risk a week of wandering around the same area(s) until I have that breakthrough and see what should have been obvious 3 hours ago. It also doesn't help that I have been on a hiatus where most of my gaming was Final Fantasy RPGs so my skills in navigating, fighting in the 3-D environments of today's games are woefully lacking. I was (sometimes still am) a superb platformer but 3-D environments have never been my strong point (aside from one particular level in Quake multiplayer).

    Exactly the same as myself...
     
  12. phanboyjohn macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    #12
    First off, I love that your avatar is Serenity. That movie (and of course, Firefly the show) were absolutely fantastic. Joss Whedon is a creative genius, no doubt about it.

    As for walkthroughs, game guides, cheating, I take a slightly different tack, which is probably because I'm getting lamer as I age. I used to be a purist, refusing to use actual cheats because they ruined a game. I'm still not fully comfortable using cheats, but I actually now support using FAQs/game guides and even cheats when necessary to progress when something stops being fun.

    This is, of course, entirely subjective and easy to abuse, but my recent feeling on gaming has been simple: games are meant to be fun. If exploring and trying out alternative solutions is fun, then by all means, continue trying. If, however, you're beating your head against the wall, do yourself a favor--put in the +50 health code or use the game guide to figure out the strategy. After all, we're the ones that spent the dough/invested the time. And plus, I've found I don't care nearly as much about using cheats/game guides/etc. after the fact as I thought I did. No one's chastising or judging me for using a FAQ or something, and in return, I get to enjoy more.

    Again, different people enjoy different things, so this may not be even remotely true in your case, but just some thoughts from my end.
     
  13. ChrisK018 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #13
    I have the same approach as phanboyjohn, (albeit with very limited appreciation for Joss Whedon).

    I want to have fun and not get THAT frustrated. Boss battles are bad enough without getting stuck in some place because I forgot to pull a lever or shot some pillar (I'm talkin' to YOU Zelda). There is exploration and then there is exasperated cursing.

    It's part of a good game to have an intuitive flow. Most AAA games do. I must say that it's not always the game... sometimes I am just an idiot that can't figure something out; I have no problems going to some FAQ site. I will always try and figure it out on my own, but in a bind, FAQs are kind. So far I have managed to sleep guilt free and no one has popped out of the woodwork with claims of gamer blasphemy.
     
  14. echeck macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #14
    Wow! I had completely forgotten about that! Back in the early 90's my cousin and I called it for some game (probably FF2, actually), but then I got in trouble when my dad went through the phone bill. :eek: ;)
     
  15. pcypert macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2006
    Location:
    Bangkok
    #15
    I don't have such a hard time with it personally. If a game is not fun anymore it's stopped functioning as it should for me. TP was driving me nuts with the controls and camera movements in some parts....so I had wasted hours because of mechanics...so made up some time in one dungeon with a guide.

    I try not to...but I'm not going to wander for hours. I have better things to do.

    Paul
     
  16. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #16
    When it stops being fun I'll go find a guide/walkthru to get me over that specific hump. I don't do cheats though (I still want to have some sense of accomplishment while playing the game). I also sometimes "read up" on RPGs to see if there any skills/powers that are completely worthless. I won't follow the guide exactly and end up w/an uber-character, but I will take it into consideration so I don't unknowing gimp my char as I level up.


    Lethal
     
  17. atszyman thread starter macrumors 68020

    atszyman

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    The Dallas 'burbs
    #17
    Well I agree that any game I was having fun playing up until a particular puzzle/boss and quickly becomes a chore will have me checking a guide.

    I guess my guilt/remorse comes from the fact that the game wasn't necessarily un-fun when I've checked, I was usually just a little too eager to get to the next area/level and did not want to spend any more time searching.

    So far with the exception of once in Twilight Princess, the answer has usually been a real "Duh, I should have seen that/tried that" type of answer. Which only enhances my guilt.

    The other temptation I fight with guides is during downtime at work when I'm really into a game. I have a few minutes, and want to see what kind of stuff will be coming up when I get home and get the kids to bed.
     
  18. 2nyRiggz macrumors 603

    2nyRiggz

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2005
    Location:
    Thank you Jah...I'm so Blessed
    #18
    If I need the guide I'll use it.....I don't really care I just want to get the job done...especially if the puzzle makes no sense and I can't be bothered in figuring it out so yes I use them.



    Bless
     

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