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Old 07 September 2016, 08:41   #1
copse
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Old games that are frustrating but could be fixed

I was discussing games people used to love, but now find unplayable in another forum. I mentioned that a large reason why I couldn't play some old games was because we accepted frustrating design decisions back then, and no longer have the patience for it today. Sitting through something over and over which could simply be removed, perhaps slow to display text which could use some way to skip. Unnecessary key presses in repetitive actions. And more..

With that in mind, what small things about which old games in particular make it unplayable for you, that you think could be patched out by someone with a disassembler and some programming skill?
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:03   #2
s2325
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Operation Firestorm should have walking after crouching without pressing up. Unlimited fuel for jetpack in Ork. Long range gun as standard in Flimbo's Quest.
[edit] I forgot about these silly racing games where car explode instead of bouncing.

Last edited by s2325; 07 September 2016 at 13:18.
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:08   #3
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No guns overheating in Walker.
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:19   #4
Minuous
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@Predseda: There already trainers that do that, it makes it rather an easy game IMHO.

I have been maintaining a list of games which have just one or a handful of flaws spoiling them:

Barbarian (Psygnosis): not enough animation frames; jerky scrolling; slow; confusing icons.
Black Lamp: too many enemies.
Cabal: difficult not to throw grenades accidentally.
LED Storm: look-ahead distance is too short; poor horizontal scrolling.
Rolling Thunder: poor frame rate; all enemies look the same.
Shadow of the Beast 1: maddening game over wait.
Winter Olympiad '88: in downhill skiing, wrong camera angle/opaque
player.
Turbo: look-ahead distance is too short; poor horizontal scrolling; car
is too hard to control.
Vectorball: controls change to an unintuitive scheme while you have the
ball (controls when you have the ball were the same as when you don't have the ball); field takes too long to generate.

More generally: most 3D games could be improved by being taking advantage of fast CPUs for smoothness, and most 2D games have sub-optimal scrolling that could be improved by having better routines.
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:21   #5
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I think there is no hope for Amiga Rolling Thunder.
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:27   #6
Minuous
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Well, agreed, it's not going to easily surpass the coin-op... ;-) But Rise of the Robots, which many people didn't like, was turned into an awesome game by earok with a few strategically chosen improvements.

Some more I have just thought of:

Gridstart 1-3 would be much better if the other cars made some attempt to swerve around you when they overtake, rather than just smashing straight into your car.
Firepower would be better if it wasn't possible to get trapped in rubble.
Vixen would be better if the whip worked at close range.
Roger Rabbit: restart game without resetting machine.

Last edited by Minuous; 07 September 2016 at 13:38.
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:37   #7
wizard
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Dragon Ninja needs a dedicated jump-button. So frustrating falling off the trucks over and over again just because the up-forward joystick motion wasn't executed exactly right..
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:39   #8
Minuous
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@wizard: Yes, you are right, I forgot about that one.

Alien Syndrome, Bionic Commando: smoother scrolling, and not having to go so close to screen edge to trigger scrolling.

Ultima 7: not to have to click on the inside of the tick to close a window, and not to have party members getting hungry every minute or two. I don't know if the Amiga version (ie. Exult) suffers from these, I remember them from the IBM version.

Last edited by Minuous; 07 September 2016 at 15:19.
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Old 07 September 2016, 13:44   #9
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Kick as basic hit instead of short and slow punch in Dojo Dan. Cadaver with more than one button to control. Mines in Turrican not timed but should react to close enemy.
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Old 07 September 2016, 15:21   #10
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Thunder Blade: Simply needs to be easier so that you don't die once every three seconds. It's a decent arcade conversion, only the difficulty and constant dying ruins the entire game.
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Old 07 September 2016, 15:42   #11
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Any game with more than 1 disk that doesn't use external drives.
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Old 07 September 2016, 20:04   #12
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I think that Dynablaster (great game) is unfortunately frustrating when playing alone since you have to press the space bar in order to use the detonator... it would be great to use the second button of the joystick!
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Old 07 September 2016, 20:36   #13
gimbal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by copse View Post
was because we accepted frustrating design decisions back then
No not really, I got trained versions to work around them and my own inadequacies I think I have enough material to fill a couple of hours here, I'm going to hold back juuuust a bit.

Strider: cut it out with the ear-wax-liquifying repeated attack noise. Also: don't run at 10fps.

Thunder Blade: less friggin' bullets coming out of nowhere. But I am actually not complaining, the Amiga version is not even as bad as the Mega Drive port. Sheesh.

Any side scroller shmup: option where you keep your upgrades on death!

Wrath of the Demon: make ducking/standing up and turning around slightly faster, in its original state the game is just too sluggish.

Gods and Gremlins 2: ability to switch between weapons you bought/picked up. I always wondered if you actually can in Gremlins 2 and just didn't know how; in level 3 you have to catch the electrical Gremlin with a phone weapon so if you don't have it - you're screwed :/

Rick Dangerous 2: Rick Dangerous 1 at least didn't have so many invisible traps and was already difficult enough :/ But at the very least, this game does not need a limited amount of lives.

Robocop 2: smaller main sprite so its actually possible to dodge bullets, maybe? But maybe not, this game was clearly designed to be the type where you run from health pickup to health pickup. Yuck.

Voodoo Nightmare: my god how do you fix this one. Needs a way longer health bar and more opportunities to replenish it, and cut the number of hits an enemy can take at least in half.

Ghost Battle: shoot lower when you're ducked so you have a chance to kill the smaller enemies from closer by :/

Addams Family: give Gomez better shoes so he has more traction.
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Old 07 September 2016, 22:49   #14
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Sensible World of Soccer --> Change controls so it plays like Kick Off 2
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Old 08 September 2016, 13:44   #15
dlfrsilver
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard View Post
Dragon Ninja needs a dedicated jump-button. So frustrating falling off the trucks over and over again just because the up-forward joystick motion wasn't executed exactly right..
Dragon Ninja exists in 2 game revisions. The wrong one is the first retail release.

The good one is in the les justiciers compilation as well as the ocean compilation with Double Dragon and Shadow warriors.

In this one the jump has been corrected.

Last edited by dlfrsilver; 25 November 2016 at 01:50.
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Old 08 September 2016, 14:47   #16
DamienD
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Interesting Denis; do you know if there are any cracked / trained versions of this?
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Old 08 September 2016, 16:13   #17
wizard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlfrsilver View Post
Dragon Ninja exists in 1 game revisions. The wrong one is the first retail release.

The good one is in the les justiciers compilation as well as the ocean compilation with Double Dragon and Shadow warriors.

In this one the jump has been corrected.
Didn't know that Thanks for the info, will check it out!
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Old 08 September 2016, 20:50   #18
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Super Cars 2: Control lag and opponents making shortcuts.
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Old 09 September 2016, 01:53   #19
copse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minuous View Post
@Predseda: There already trainers that do that, it makes it rather an easy game IMHO.
I think this is part of the danger. The change made (perhaps a bad choice by designers, or one they had to make due to lack of resources to make something better), unbalances the game.
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Old 09 September 2016, 01:54   #20
copse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gimbal View Post
Voodoo Nightmare: my god how do you fix this one. Needs a way longer health bar and more opportunities to replenish it, and cut the number of hits an enemy can take at least in half.
I was thinking about this when playing it. My conclusion was you'd almost need to just take the graphics and general engine, polish it and make a completely new game.
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