How was I meant to know THAT?!

NerfedFalcon

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We've all been there. Everyone at some point has played a game with the design motto of "Eh, they'll get it eventually" despite the mechanic in question being completely unintuitive. Nothing mentioned in the manual, or in the game. And yet there's no way you'll ever succeed without knowing this crucial piece of data. Case in point: Dota 2.

Now, I know that a lot of you are already composing comments about "Noob, go back to LoL, we don't want you in our much better game anyway." Hear me out. The game comes with no manual to begin with - but neither do a lot of Steam games, so. The game also has no in-game tutorial. Fine on its own - it does at least allow you to say "I'm a noob" and get slightly easier matches - but here's the fun part. Everyone who's played any (edit: straight-up) MOBA/Action-RTS (I prefer MOBA since every RTS involves some degree of action) ever, knows that in order to succeed, you need items.

How to get items in League of Legends:
-Be at base.
-Open store.
-Find and select item.
-Click 'buy' button, or double-click item.

How to get items in Dota 2:
-Be at base.
-Open store.
-Find and select item.
-Right click the item.

There is no other way to get items than to right click them. It is never indicated that you have to right click items to get them. It's also difficult to see the 'O' prompt on the 'Level Up +1' box, whereas LoL's + icons above the abilities are tough to miss. Sure, it may have more strategic depth, but it's impossible to reach through all the lazy design.

So what about you guys? What's a game that gave you a mechanic it never told you about and expected you to know?
 

ultrachicken

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Dec 22, 2009
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This is a small one, but pressing O (or B on the XBox) in Dark Souls lets you slide down a ladder. This wasn't in Demon's Souls, and it works even though most of the ladders in the game are either rugged wood or otherwise unlikely do allow for sliding. It's far from a crucial skill, as you're typically not going to be fighting on ladders, but it's never mentioned in-game despite being really convenient.
 

Rumpsteak

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Your example reminds me of when I first started playing a Hunter in World of Warcraft. You see, a good portion of the previous years had been spent playing Pokemon so when it came to getting pets in World of Warcraft, I was confuzzled. Even thiugh I probably missed the explanation that did exist.

Anyway, most the the "I was meant to know that how?" moment come from point and click games. I believe Yahtzee covered this in the walking dead episode.
 

DoPo

"You're not cleared for that."
Jan 30, 2012
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OP, your example is weak. I mean, yeah, it may be unintuitive but at least eventually you can probably guess it. After all, if left-clicking doesn't work, you may just try right-clicking just in case. Try this:

Spells of Gold - to get actual spells as in the title, you should go to a temple and press Tab. This is indicated nowhere, nor is it explained. Also, it wasn't in the manual. The only reason I know it, is because a review of the game scolded the game for it. And I read the review after finishing it.
 

FalloutJack

Bah weep grah nah neep ninny bom
Nov 20, 2008
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I'm going to just cite the trope "Guide Dang It" and move on. That's basically the answer to this thread.
 

Keoul

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A better example would be smite's shop system, I've seen several "let's plays" where the player is completely befuddled with no clue at all how to buy anything.
For me I'd say skyrim, for the longest time I thought running was default, until I got my sneak high enough where it said "run while crouched to tumble" that's when I realized something was very wrong. Goddamnit, checking the control config for every game from then on.
 

Trivun

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Dec 13, 2008
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Final Fantasy XII. To get the most powerful weapon in the game, the Zodiac Spear, you have to deliberately avoid opening four specific chests and then open a specific fifth one later in the game - the game gives no clues or hints whatsoever to which four chests you can't open. So if you accidentally open one of those four before getting the weapon, you lose the spear completely. And I wouldn't have even known about it in the first place if I hadn't bought the guide book as well as the game.

Also, pretty much any adventure game involving puzzles. Particularly the Myst games, although they do tend to be rather intuitive and easy to figure out if you simply think hard enough and understand the theme or context. But it took me forever and a day, plus hints online, to figure out where I was going wrong with an otherwise simple puzzle in Myst III: Exile - in the nature age specifically. And don't even get me started on the access code to the Moiety age in Riven, not to mention the sheer balls out difficulty level of the power source for Gehn's linking books...
 

Vern5

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I was a kid when the first pokemon games came out and they were also the first games to drive me to tears of frustration. Remember that old man who won't let you leave one of the first cities just because he was a prick? I could not for the life of me figure out why I couldn't get past him when the next Gym I wanted to hit up (Brock's Gym) was obviously past the old man.

For those of you who don't know, the old man wont let you pass until you try to walk straight up to the Elite Four (basically the final battle) only to be challenged by your rival along the way. It is only after first defeating your rival that the old man will decide to let you past but not before he forcefully teaches you how to catch pokemon regardless of whether or not you have already caught one.
 

Vegosiux

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May 18, 2011
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Morrowind. Sanguine equipment. Good luck turning every stone. There are about 30 of them, but most of them aren't even mentioned in any way, so you don't even know they exist until you get them (or read a guide). The only way to get them is thus to stumble upon them through dumb luck or sheer persistence; or to pick them up with a guide.
 

Guffe

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Jul 12, 2009
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WHY WON'T MY PIKACHU EVOLVEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!?????
seriously, I had a level 80 Pikachu in Red and it didn't evolve! My brother got so frustrated when his reached level 90 he thought it had bugged and restarted teh game, only to 2 weeks later find out it has to be done with the stone. Oh the tears!!
 

Lizardon

Robot in Disguise
Mar 22, 2010
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Guffe said:
WHY WON'T MY PIKACHU EVOLVEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!?????
seriously, I had a level 80 Pikachu in Red and it didn't evolve! My brother got so frustrated when his reached level 90 he thought it had bugged and restarted teh game, only to 2 weeks later find out it has to be done with the stone. Oh the tears!!
I would be incredibly surprised if there wasn't some random NPC hidden somewhere that told you how to evolve Pikachu.

Anyway, sounds like you needed one of these.



Everyone I knew who played Red and Blue had a copy of this book. It was pretty much required.

Although, I'm fairly certain the whole point of the Pokemon anime was to teach kids how to play the games. They showed where certain Pokemon were found, how they evolved, what moves they could learn and the different type match ups. Of course they got a lot of that wrong so it wasn't always helpful.
 

Scarim Coral

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I had recently encounter this sort of problem with LoZ: Skyward Sword. It was that first dungeon (Forest Temple?) there was a check locked away in bars and there two eyes that follow you whenever you moved.
It mention something about standing in the middle of the eyes and that still doesn't provide a hint to the solution. With Fi being useless I look it up online and it mention you had to rotate your sword in a circle like motion to make the eyes dizzy and open the bars.
All I can say is crew you Nintendo and you stupid realisitic wrist movement! (Since given the Moblins those tazer make sword fighting dreadful!)
 

AdamG3691

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Scarim Coral said:
I had recently encounter this sort of problem with LoZ: Skyward Sword. It was that first dungeon (Forest Temple?) there was a check locked away in bars and there two eyes that follow you whenever you moved.
It mention something about standing in the middle of the eyes and that still doesn't provide a hint to the solution. With Fi being useless I look it up online and it mention you had to rotate your sword in a circle like motion to make the eyes dizzy and open the bars.
All I can say is crew you Nintendo and you stupid realisitic wrist movement! (Since given the Moblins those tazer make sword fighting dreadful!)
I'm petty sure Fi gives you a hint about them having a compulsion to look at the tips of pointy objects. my main problem was getting them to recognize the rotation.

La Mulana.
just La Mulana
(but especially the confusion gate) (a fool goes left becasuse he was dumb, a wise man goes right, but was a fool, what will you do? the answer is to go up an invisible ladder, no, there is no hint about this puzzle anywhere else in the ruins)
 

omega 616

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I was playing ninja gaiden 2, killed some fire boss for the second time. Had to run across lava ... as you do, then as I got to the mouth of the exit, I exploded.

"huh" I thought, "must have been some random fireball, lets try again", off I ran again but I exploded multiple times in a row, which killed me.

I read the faqs to see what the fuck went on, there are orange exploding jelly fish that are the exact same colour as the lava AKA they are invisible! Here is an extract from the FAQS.

" DO NOT CROSS THE LAVA WATER YET!
While the exit path is just across from Ryu, running towards it will
equal DEATH! That's right, there are some VERY well-hidden and hard-to-
see Exploding Jelly Fish blocking the path and if you try to run
towards the exit, expect to die and do the Zed battle ALL OVER AGAIN.

Since there is a dead body with arrows nearby, grab some arrows and
start flinging them blindly into the lava water. After killing about
10-12 of the suckers, run towards the exit BUT BE CAUTIOUS! There will
still be a couple of exploders, so run in a zigzag pattern. WHEW!"

WHAT! THE! FUCK!

The real kicker is I can't do the boss fight again, the fucker wont land!
 

Chimpzy_v1legacy

Warning! Contains bananas!
Jun 21, 2009
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Ah, this thread reminds me of the olden days of Lucasarts/Sierra adventure games, when the solutions to puzzles where not hampered by such silly concepts as logic. The nostalgia!
 

The Wykydtron

"Emotions are very important!"
Sep 23, 2010
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And That said:
There's a quest in the Witcher 2 where you need to blow up harpy nests that are out of reach. You can throw bombs at them, cast fireballs, it does nothing. What you're supposed to do is plant "harpy traps" , these spiky balls on the ground, then RUN AWAY. A harpy will then come, pick up the trap and fly away. Some time later you hear a boom somewhere in the distance and one random nest somewhere explodes because "the harpy carried the bomb back to its nest".


On a lesser one, countering Irelia in League of Legends. Irelia is now one of the more infamous joke characters because of the insane amount of nerfs that she took, but before I really could think of no way she could be countered.
Here's what she did:

-She had a passive that reduced the duration of stuns/slows, etc, depending on how many enemies were next to her. If you called another guy to ambush her, your crowd controls would be less effective.
-She had an instant dash attack, that refreshed its cooldown if it killed its target. Meaning she could jump from dying creep to dying creep, for some impressive distances. She would also easily out-farm you since she could get last-hits from long range with a 0 cooldown spell.

-She had another passive that granted her high hit point regain whenever she attacked something. Whenever she activated it, her attacks would deal un-reducable "true damage" meaning she would easily cleave throgh your armor.

- She had a magic damage slow, that would instead stun if she had less health than you. So even if you had her on the ropes, she could stun you and run away, or kill you outright.

-Her ultimate was a very short cooldown wave of 4 magic daggers, each of which dealt damage in a line and HEALED her for a large ammount of the damage dealt. If she fired all 4 daggers in a wave of creeps she would regain about half her health.

-Because her attacks dealt damage no matter what, she would always build high amounts of defense and health regen. She would literally jump on you and be unkillable, then go back to hitting creeps for massive health regen. At later stages ,she could jump into 1v3 fights and easily escape thanks to stuns being useless against her.

The "better nerf Irelia" meme was born because of the massive amount of consecutive nerfs to her kit. At level 18 with full tank items and minimal attack gear, she would jump into your team 1v5 rush straight to your fragile characters and just melt them, then casually walk away shrugging off slows, stuns etc.
I wish I was around when Irelia was OP as fuck. She's my favourite character in LoL and i'm fairly certain she needs a buff of some sort... Then again I think I joined the LoL scene after all those nerfs so I might not know any better >.<

Her ult is useless now except for sniping those low health people and farming, it's not going to keep you alive during a proper fight at all.

As for countering her I can just point at Garen and go home.

Her passive is still going strong though, shrugging off literally everything on her quest to kill that pesky AD Carry, Flash over a wall at 10 health and recall in a bush XD

She's not a proper joke character as in that one person in the cast that is useless underpowered trash (AKA Old Evelynn) but I get your point.

OT: A few routes in Mirror's Edge were really roundabout... I'm replaying it again because that's what I do whenever i've run out of games to play and i'm only just getting through some of it with about 4 full playthroughs beforehand.

Oh and some of the examinations and presents in the Ace Attorney games were a bit fucked. Especially during the Investigation stages. You can be swapping scenes for a good 15 minutes with zero clue what random shit you need to present to Dickhead A

I love those games but for for fucks sake... Case 5. Game 1. Fuck!
 

Mirroga

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Majority of how to make powerful monsters in Monster Rancher 2 went to the Guide-Dang-It tropes. It really never gave you tips on the "secret" effects of some items as well as how to unlock certain monsters without the internet.

Although discovering them on your own has its own rewards. The complex metagame and training of Monster Rancher 2 as an adult is really fun so long as you know all the secrets by this point.