No Right Answer: The Best Video Game That Makes Failing Fun

Firefilm

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The Best Video Game That Makes Failing Fun

Losing a game doesn't mean you can't have fun! Some games are even more fun on the underdog's team. But which one wins at losing?

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lord.jeff

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Oct 27, 2010
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I haven't played Surgeon Simulator but I have played FTL and I never had fun during the fail state it was fun getting better and going a little further after each death but I'm not sure if that counts, that's just overcoming a challenge every game has that. To me the best fail states come for text games or visual novels because even after I beat the game I was still replaying them to find the endings where I get eaten by a bird, clumsily stab myself during a fight, refuse to leave a bar while the earth blow up or press a button that blows up the whole town.
 
Jan 12, 2012
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FTL is fun, but I wouldn't say failing in it is fun, more like something you expect going in. It's like Dark Souls; you know it's going to be hard, and you're going to lose a lot, so you enjoy playing even if playing involves losing a bunch, and it makes the eventual victory that much better.

In Surgeon Simulator, your losses happen quickly and gorily, and it's fun to murder the patients because you're rarely spending more than 5 minutes with each one, for better or worse. You can enjoy trying to break ribs with radios because part of the fun of the game is seeing how many different ways you can lose, while FTL is about finding the right combination of skill and lucky random generation to win.
 

Lvl 64 Klutz

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Apr 8, 2008
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Dan says the wrong name for the game, and then you guys switched who won midway through the ending bit. There's a joke about the theme of the episode somewhere in there, but I don't want to sound mean-spirited because it was still a great episode as usual.
 

Firefilm

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Lvl 64 Klutz said:
Dan says the wrong name for the game, and then you guys switched who won midway through the ending bit. There's a joke about the theme of the episode somewhere in there, but I don't want to sound mean-spirited because it was still a great episode as usual.
I'd make some attempt to say we meant to do that, but nope. We filmed both endings and one was supposed to be cut. Oopsie!
 

Lightknight

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Nov 26, 2008
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No, FTL is a fun game that is hard to beat. It does not make losing fun. Losing is still frustrating, it's just that the game is so much fun. It should be disqualified because he argues why the game is fun, not why it makes losing fun.

Surgeon Simulator is just fun and notions of success quickly go out the window so it's not too bad to lose.

However, throwing FTL out the window, I'm not sure what other game you may replace it with. Surgeon Simulator is kind of a rare bird where the process of playing is far more entertaining than really reaching the goal.
 

Elijah Newton

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Sep 17, 2008
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Hey, congratulations on dad-hood, Kyle!

Dwarf Fortress would've been my choice for indie and fun to lose.

Also, deliberately bad games would also include QWOP, and maybe Goat Simulator as well?
 

Darth_Payn

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If I heard you guys right, Surgeon Simulator uses its bad controls as a selling point? Did they do that on purpose?!
OT: There a couple of games where dying was pretty amusing. Crash Bandicoot3: Warped had him get flattened to a ribbon, set on fire, stabbed, impaled, popped like a balloon, and straight-up ATOMIZED. In Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, if you die, you get a voice-over of the Prince going "Wait, no, that didn't happen. Let me go back and tell it again.", or something like that.
 

Kenjitsuka

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Sep 10, 2009
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The punchline could have been; Were's your reset button, then?".
Would've made the whole setup a bit more complete for me. ;)

Great debate in any case!!!
Can see you're both into the games you (tried to) championed.

But I DO miss causing spittakes...
Just making a final point just like all the others... that's not a pay off, is it?
Saying something so funny or absurd that you automatically win... CLEARLY what you want to be aiming at, no?
 

Patsup

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Sep 6, 2011
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Elijah Newton said:
Dwarf Fortress would've been my choice for indie and fun to lose.
That also would have been my choice as well. It could invoke "rage-quits" from some people, but still the game has quite unique ways that will make you loose.
 

Jmp_man

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Apr 24, 2011
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Hmm... I'm not sure I agree with FTL being a good game to lose. Sure it's great to play FTL but losing sucks because all your work that you put into it for the last 2 hours is gone (except for the experience you gain in real life learning how to play the game). Victory feels sweet in FTL, and no one likes losing at that game. Another game you could have said instead of FTL would be The Binding of Issac or Spelunky.

Also it was said above but I think it needs to be said again...

In Dwarf Fortress losing is fun! (Hell, type "Losing is Fun" into Google and click "I'm feeling lucky". You'll be directed towards the DF wiki.)

Thunderous Cacophony said:
FTL is fun, but I wouldn't say failing in it is fun, more like something you expect going in. It's like Dark Souls; you know it's going to be hard, and you're going to lose a lot, so you enjoy playing even if playing involves losing a bunch, and it makes the eventual victory that much better.
I'm not sure I agree with this because of the reasons above. Basically in Dark Souls dying is still a punishment and the only thing that is gained is experience with the game mechanics. The game doesn't actively pursue the "Dying is Fun" angle (more like the "LOL you died again" angle...)
 

Krige

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Oct 27, 2010
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I came here to mention Dwarf Fortress and am happy that someone beat me to it. Seven years of LOSING IS FUN right there in the main menu.
 

Groverfield

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You're both wrong. Best game to lose at is The Stanley Parable. Personally, I hate the game and its story and its message that games are completely fruitless and its presentation... and pretty much anything. But if there's one reason to play it, it's to fail, and fail hard, and see how bad you can botch up the game. The unique method of failing is by your own agency, everyone does it, or at least anyone who ends up having any fun with it at all.
 

RandV80

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Oct 1, 2009
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I'd say FTL is more fun to start than it is fun to lose. Because of the random nature of the game every start is it's own mystery box seeing what kind of hand you get dealt and what you can make with it.

Though there's certainly times when you could say it's 'fun' to lose, the instances that make great stories to share where everything is going great then suddenly disaster!
 

Redlin5_v1legacy

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Aug 5, 2009
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Firefilm said:
Lvl 64 Klutz said:
Dan says the wrong name for the game, and then you guys switched who won midway through the ending bit. There's a joke about the theme of the episode somewhere in there, but I don't want to sound mean-spirited because it was still a great episode as usual.
I'd make some attempt to say we meant to do that, but nope. We filmed both endings and one was supposed to be cut. Oopsie!
So you failed while still providing fun?

Huh.

Anyway, losing in FTL gets my vote because I haven't played a game in a LONG time that gets me as invested in the mechanics of combat as FTL does. When I lose, usually after a few hours of playing, I am truly motivated to get back at it. And maybe this time I'll beat the Giant Alien Spiders.
 

Darxide

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Dec 14, 2009
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This video is absurd. I rage every time I lose at FTL. There is nothing fun about losing in that game.
 

Zydrate

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Darxide said:
This video is absurd. I rage every time I lose at FTL. There is nothing fun about losing in that game.
It's fun for me because I lose just 20 minutes in, and it always seems like it was just bad luck. It's usually something like "Oh fuck my weapons are offline" or the one time all my people suffocated because I couldn't put out the fires.
 

FPLOON

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Jul 10, 2013
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Wouldn't most rhythm-based games be video games that makes failing them fun in some way... or is that just me?

Other than that, if I learned anything from YouTube, any _______________ Simulator game is better when you fail...