Coffee Talk #108: Your Favorite Videogame Cliches

Today’s Coffee Talk is a suggestion from RPadholic N8R. What’s your favorite videogame cliche? To stick with N8R’s examples, are you a fan of doors that lead to nowhere? Do you love how waterfalls are used to hide important objects?

As for me, I’m a huge fan of barrels, boxes, and crates in role-playing games. Who puts treasure in barrels? Why do adventurers think it’s okay to break and plunder every crate they come across? It’s not like I’ve ever read townspeople in an R.A. Salvatore book say, “Oh crap. It’s that Drizz’t guy again. Better hide the crates before he and Bruenor wreck everything!” Yet for some reason, it’s totally acceptable in games.

Welcome to Coffee Talk! Let’s start off the day by discussing whatever is on your (nerd chic) mind. Every morning I’ll kick off a discussion and I’m counting on you to participate in it. If you’re not feelin’ my topic, feel free to start a chat with your fellow readers and see where it takes you. Whether you’re talking about videogames, Siobhan Magnus slaying it on American Idol, Bryan Danielson’s losing streak on NXT, or Jeff Hardy’s latest day in court, Coffee Talk is the place to do it.

Today’s Coffee Talk is a suggestion from RPadholic N8R. What’s your favorite videogame cliche? To stick with N8R’s examples, are you a fan of doors that lead to nowhere? Do you love how waterfalls are used to hide important objects?

As for me, I’m a huge fan of barrels, boxes, and crates in role-playing games. Who puts treasure in barrels? Why do adventurers think it’s okay to break and plunder every crate they come across? It’s not like I’ve ever read townspeople in an R.A. Salvatore book say, “Oh crap. It’s that Drizz’t guy again. Better hide the crates before he and Bruenor wreck everything!” Yet for some reason, it’s totally acceptable in games.

[Tangent: Computers are a modern-day equivalent of crates. My friend and I love playing as Wolverine in X-Men Legends and Marvel Ultimate Alliance, just so we can shred every computer we come across. In our heads, Logan is frustrated that he never learned how to “work a computer” and goes into a berserker rage every time he sees a PC. This is a lot funnier is you’re actually playing the game with me.]

So tell your fellow readers and me about your favorite videogame cliches! This should be a fun one. I can’t wait to read your comments!

Author: RPadTV

52 thoughts on “Coffee Talk #108: Your Favorite Videogame Cliches”

  1. Here is a one that I realized when playing FF XIII and BFBC 2. If the game tries to rush you through a screen or turns the camera funky, always look around there will be something. During the bridge scene in the beginning of FF XIII it happens atleast 3 times in 20ish minutes. Turn around after the camera changes and there is a floating orb. BFBC 2 hides those comm consoles that way, like when the guys challenge you to a race on the Quads there is a comm console in the building that is just out of view and they are trying to get you to just take-off.

  2. I can't think of any favorite cliches but I know of one I hate and it's the cheat system in ALL sports games when playing the computer. If you're leading in MLB 10: The Show you have to play extra carefully from the seventh inning and beyond because the computer will start slapping home runs, doubles, and triples and they will start making you drop balls in the outfield and start making you overthrow the baseman. God I hate that.

    I thought they would have Daniel Bryan beat that useless Khali last night. I'm really liking Skip Sheffield and Wade Barret the most. They all seem to be good though they're all great and much needed additions to the WWE roster. I may have to buy Smackdown vs. Raw 2011.

  3. @RROD

    Dude you didn't hear about the raid on his house back in January?

    He was found with like hundreds of pills of Vicodin and Soma. Cocaine powder and has now been charged with Opium possession too.

  4. Call me picky, but I really hate loopholes in stories. I know it supposed to be "video game clichés you like" but herein lies the problem: I hate storyline loopholes that artificially extend the game, yet I know that the games would be much shorter without them. So it's somewhat of a double-edged sword.

    For example: In GTA IV, you should be able to have the ability to kill Dimitri (and that other mob boss guy) early on and *poof*; problem solved. The game would have ended with that whimpering guy at the airport and you would have been able to not have your girlfriend killed, but the game would have been shorter.

    In Oblivion IV; you should have been able to hold on to the amulet the king gave you and then when you find Martin, you just go to the Imperial City with him and *bam*; oblivion gates closed. Unfortunately, the stupid monk takes the amulet from you automatically and loses it even after you rescue Martin. The main quest then becomes an exercise in tracking down the amulet GIVEN to you at the start of the game, thus making a game that could have been completed in a few hours much longer.

    Lord of the Rings Trilogy (Yes, the movie). Why didn't Frodo and Sam have the damn griffin fly them up to the top of the mountain in the first movie to drop the ring in the lava? Yeah, I know you've heard this before and that it's not a video game, but I think you get the picture.

    I hate bad storytelling that creates loopholes and defy rational thinking to artificially extend the experience as a narrative, yet I usually enjoy playing the actual game despite the asinine story giving me the flimsiest excuse to continue playing. There are lots of games out there that don't have to inflate the story to have you keep playing for more, but I just feel that the obvious ones insult my intelligence. Oh, and fetch quests don't apply to my rant, just the main story line.

    Yeah, I am anal about that. I guess that's why I like Yahtzee's reviews so much.


  5. @Iceman

    If Frodo & Sam take that Griffin to Mt. Moldor after his uncle gives him the ring, then we wouldn't have a LOTR Trilogy. Tolkkien just wanted to entertain us with words and visions.

  6. @slicky

    hahaha. No, i'm not going to use my glasses. We have polarized viewers at work that i can experiment on.

  7. @RRODisHere Hardy's house was actually raided shortly after this WWE contract expired.

    @tokz_21 Drug trafficker! Hardy is the (alleged) drug trafficker! The swanton bomb should also be referred to as the (alleged) drug trafficker.

    @Iceman Well, most Final Fantasy games have a huge loophole that's a gameplay limitation. For example, in FFVII the crew could have stopped Sephiroth easily if ALL of them went after him. The party would have killed if most of them weren't dicking around on the airship.

  8. I'd like to know why don't we get "breast size" sliders to get exactly the set you want in real life the way you do in some video games? (I'm looking right at you Rumble Roses XX……)

  9. Eff Cait Sith, he sucked and still sucks! My favorite and least favorite cliche is the huge door (or other object) and save point combo. Like in Ninja Gaiden 2 right before you fight the purple chick in the church, its like "hey, you see those huge doors and that save point? Something bad is going to happen to you if you don't save." That is why I love it, why I hate it is because I usually get stuck at that point of the game for a few days and that's no fun.

  10. @redtailman

    The only thing I see Ben trying to do is re-gain his power as overseer of the island again.

  11. @redtailman

    Exactly his plan is to stay with Team Jacob and hopefully he will be rewarded with the being in charge of the island again, if Team Jacob wins now that he's made his peace with killing Jacob and why he did it.


    What! I is the excite!

    (that was done purposefully)

  12. lost spoilers

    island 2

    Sawyer is in bed with Ava, appears to be running an old con but is caught.

    claims to be police and Ava says she doesn't believe him says LaFleur and LAPD comes busting in along with Miles his partner.

    Sawyer is still looking for Antony Cooper (original Sawyer).

    Sawyer meets Charlotte through Miles who sets them up on a blind date.

    Charlotte gets kicked out of Sawyer's apartment for seeing the file he has on Anthony Cooper.

    Miles knows Sawyer lied to him and quits being his partner.

    Sawyer realizes he needs to be more trusting and goes to reconcile with Miles.

    Their squad car gets hit by a car being chased by LAPD, the perp goes running.

    Sawyer and Miles go after the perp and it turns out to be Kate. *end of episode*

    I forgot to mention that Claire tries to kill Kate, while Sayid just watches. Smokey comes over pimp slaps Claire and apologizes to Kate for Claire trying to kill her.

  13. @nightshade

    I only posted what The Man asked for. Did you see the Hawks brought up Crawford because Huet has the "flu". What a lame excuse to say he sucks and we want to try out Crawford for a bit.

  14. @R-Pad

    I'm loving the Dark Alliance 2 pic up there. Also, how's the DA: Awakening going for you? Liking it so far?

    I need to find some barrel to break…..

  15. @Ray

    When my roommates and I were playing through Marvel Ultimate Alliance we destroyed every computer we came across, our goal was to destroy all technology and send humanity back to the stone age.


    Personally I am a fan of finding hidden objects within games. The Wolfenstein series is notorious for having the hidden treasure and secret passages, so I have always had fun looking for things like that in all of the games in that series. Also with games like Mirror's Edge finding the runner's bags.

    Another thing that I like finding are cryptic messages in secret parts of a game. Ex) The cake is a lie, Portal. Where is November, Mirror's Edge. etc. I just like to find messages like that in games, if there are other games that people could inform me of that also have messages like that I would appreciate it. Just fun stuff to look for.

  16. Sorry guys, I was up late last night, and I have a bunch to do today.

    In adventure games, how about the room that is the inevitable "orgy of ammo and health". You know how there's always that room that seems to be the stockpile room that you may not have needed, but is always fun to find.

    Another one of my favorites is the exaggerated arm movements of a characters normal walk. Seriously, who moves their arms that high when they walk?

    @ Lost

    I'm anticipating next week as well. My favorite part of last night's episode was when fake Locke pimp slapped feral Claire. I laughed my ass off and my wife looked at me funny.

  17. Collecting Gold (coins, bolts, rings). Ever time I play a platformer and someone sees me collecting gold things they are always saying “so its like Mario for this generation” I know it is a necessary thing but seriously hasn’t changed much EVER.

    More of a Gripe: Spawn doors. Tons of enemies come from an area so you go there only to find it a small nook with a locked door or a dead end.

  18. my favorite one comes from the MGS series, the cardboard box. It’s amazing how the patrols are never too suspicious of a box appearing out of nowhere.

    @Jeff Hardy topic
    I don’t wish ill things to happen to people but he was just asking for it and deserves what he gets. Maybe if he gets sentenced TNA will realize that they’ve wasted enough money on WWE rejects and will start promoting their talent again.

  19. @tokz

    Wow, I didn’t hear about that. No wonder the WWE let him go. It seems he’ll never learn.

  20. lost spoilers:
    island prime
    Sawyer meets up with Smokey and the others.
    Sawyer gets a special mission from Smokey to do recon on Hydra Island, (where they were in cages i believe season 2) to make sure the Ajira plane is okay and that the coast is clear.
    Sawyer meets Zoe who claims to be the last survivor of 316 but is revealed to be
    working for Widmore.
    Sawyer meets with Widmore and makes a deal that he will bring out smokey if Widmore gets him off the island with some of his friends; they shake hands and leave.
    Sawyer tells smokey the plane is there but Widmore is waiting for him.
    Sawyer tells smokey of the deal with Widmore and they will work on a plan to get to the plane.
    Sawyer talks with kate tells him how he’s playing both widmore and smokey so they can leave the island not using the plane but the submarine.

  21. @tokz_21 Thanks for that! Here’s the thing that bugs me about Lost — I feel like I need to talk about it with 12 friends or read three online summaries so I can understand what the hell happened. It used to be fun, but I’m SO over it. I’m enjoying it more hearing recaps and opinions from you guys.

  22. @rpad
    You’re welcome. I usualy watch it 2 times and sometimes 3 times just to make sure i understood everything. I’m obssessed with Lost like that.

  23. @Sandrock323 I only got around an hour of game time last night, but so far I’m loving it! The Mhairi swerve was unexpected considering that the company was hyping her on the web site and PR tour. Ha!

  24. @N8R

    I was teeming with with anticipation when feral Claire put the knife on Kate. I yelled "JUST DO IT DAMNIT!!" and my girlfriend looked over at me in such a weird face.

  25. @ Smartguy

    Yeah, bad news for you.

    I was listening to the last Lost podcast and someone sent in a question to the writers asking (and I quote) "What's up with Kate's name and number being scratched off at the cave, but not at the lighthouse. Is this some sort of misdirection tactic by Jacob to throw off the MIB?"

    The writers responded that there is some merit there. I'm thinking, even her number (51, 5+1+6, 5-1+4, 51 backwards is 15) is misdirection. If that is the case, why would Jacob be so dead set on throwing MIB off the trail of Kate unless she was extremely important? It's also plausible that out of all of the survivors, Jacob visited her first, and then Sawyer.

  26. @Ray

    Agreed, they are evil and must be stopped before they take over our communication, music, games, finances, news sources, word processing, shopping, porn, movies, etc.

  27. @N8R

    LOL, that game used to be free.

    I still think it is Jack and Sawyer replacing who needs replacing at the end. I can make cases for why Sawyer would be the new black guy or white guy (haha) as well as Jack in both scenarios.

    Kate dying will be the catalyst that puts Sawyer and Jack over the edge for island control.

  28. Well, on the topic of “Spoilarz”, (or should I say “off the topic?”)

    Can sombody please spoilarz Dante’s Inferno (the game for me). I’m a big fan of the book and I know the game is a blatant God of War clone, but I still want to know the story (without actually having to play God of Inferno) since I loved reading about the journey through the nine circles of hell. Is there anything in there from the book? Who was the chick in the commercial he was going after? Please do tell.


  29. HA! Rpad I’m with you on the crates and barrels. God I love Morrowind and Oblivion especially for that. Why would a fork/calipers/broom be in an underground cave miles from civilization and only inhabited by ghosts or imps? I mean seriously lol. Oblivion killed me with it’s massive amount of paintbrushes and calipers o_O

  30. @N8R
    If she winds up being the main thing for Jacob, I will not finish the series (if it is revealed early) and I will forever hate on the damn show. Such a horrible character to weight like that.

  31. @ Smartguy

    The ultimate question is:

    Why do people have to be in the position in the first place? What IS the big deal with the island?

    The theories there are off the charts. That’s a whole thread worth of discussion there.

  32. @N8R

    the only thing "remarkable" about her character thus far this season is that she hasn't changed. She's still stupid Kate running from the police. She killed a person and was partly responsible for another person's death. Time to pay the piper. I don't know if that has any significance or not…but she is still the same old dumb criminal kate.

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