Question of the Week

Question of the Week: 5/21/14

What successful franchise, that is loved by many, do you not enjoy?

Courtney Osborn, Founder & Editor in Chief:

I never got into the Gears of War games.  I don’t really know if it is the whole “big macho badass dudes killin’ stuff” aspect of the game or the fact that I was just more into Call of Duty and Halo at the time, but I never gave it a chance.  Even now, every time I hear about Gears of War I just tune it out; I honestly don’t care about that franchise whatsoever.  

But even after saying that, I did the same exact thing with the Uncharted series, Mass Effect series, BioShock series, Arkham series, Dead Space series, and inFAMOUS series.  I finally gave them a chance and now love every single of of those games. So who knows, maybe there is hope for Gears of War yet!

Lou Contaldi, Senior Editor:

Where do I start? I’m normally a giant antagonist when it comes to much-beloved franchises. To start off real basic, I’m going to say Call of Duty. I missed that train from the get go and absolutely couldn’t get into it from then on out. Besides that, I’ve never been able to jump on the Halo train, despite my college roommates’ best efforts. On the Nintendo-front, I’ve never been able to get into Pikmin.

But the one that stings the most to all of my gaming friends is my avid hatred of the GTA series. Despite their ridiculous amount of sales, I have never been able to play past an hour of that game without suffering from complete and utter boredom.

Chad Waller, Editor:

That’s a hard question because I’ve mostly just never played the very successful franchises. On some conceptual level, they do not interest me. This includes but is not limited to: Call of Duty, Battlefield, Mass Effect, Grand Theft Auto, and Assassin’s Creed. I’m sure they are all fine games and do what they set out to do quite well, especially given the review scores they usually get, but I just can’t bring myself to want to try any of them.

Shawn Richards, Editor:

This may get be a ton of hatred aimed at me, but I don’t care. Mario needs to die. People loved the newer Mario games like the New Super Mario titles and the Super Mario 3D Land, but enough is enough. Either Mario gets some new innovation, or he dies a horrible death at the hands of Bowser– or Luigi. Mario has little to no actual character, you rarely see him as the bad guy, and nothing changes with him. I want to see more games with Bowser or Luigi as the main character. I would even like to see Peach get a good standalone title that isn’t sexist at all like Super Princess Peach was. Mario just isn’t an interesting character, and I can’t say that I enjoyed any of his games past Galaxy.

 Mark Merville, PC Editor:

For me this would have to be the God of War series.  I may just be hating on it for no reason, but I feel like the gameplay of these games is too scripted.  I’ve seen people fight impressive enemies in God of War  and the only skill you need is to be able to press a certain button when the screen prompts you to.  In my mind the ability to do combos yourself instead of “Press A to do a jump-kick flip sword attack that decapitates your enemy” is what really makes a fighting system in a game interesting.

 Brett Medlock, Editor:

I will be hated for this but…. Grand Theft Auto. I tried so hard to like all of them, but just couldn’t. I don’t like the stories, the comedy isn’t really my bag, and the gameplay just seems bland to me. The only thing I’ve ever enjoyed doing in GTA games is running from the cops and using cheats to make things crazy. However, I have yet to play GTAV so I’m hoping that will change my mind about the series.

 Steven Shearer, Editor:

Okay, I have been thinking about this for a few days and the simple answer is: I don’t dislike any popular franchise. However, Far Cry 3 came to my mind. It is the only game in recent memory that was loved by many but I didn’t enjoy. Even though it was a single player open world game, which are my favorite type of games, I didn’t like it that much, so much so, that I didn’t complete it!   

Ryan Latuso, Editor:

Hear me out on this, BioShock. I have played BioShock 1 and BioShock Infinite and let me start by saying that I love the storytelling, art design, atmosphere, and pretty much everything about it. In the end, I didn’t like the game play and that’s the most important thing. Something about it just didn’t work for me.

Dustin LaRoe, Editor:

Most of them. I never played World of Warcraft, The Last of Us, or Alan Wake. If I get a bad impression of a game from its gameplay coverage or its fans, I punch out and leave it behind. There is far too much stuff created every month for me to waste time on junk I’m not into.

There are even more well loved games I tried once or twice and quickly got bored of. Titanfall, Gears of War, and God of War to name the first three that pop into my head. I just couldn’t get into these games, or got tired after a level or two.

BioShock Infinite was a terrible game. It looked pretty and had a great story, but it should have been a movie. The shooting and Plasmids were the worst. Sorry: vigors. I was really excited for that game but it quickly turned into a chore. In the end, the story suffered from how much effort it took me to slog through it. It’s a shame.

Even Halo 4 was a bust for me. I played the story, but it left me unmoved. I also found myself unable to get into the multiplayer for the first time ever in a Halo game

Benjamin Luthi, Editor:

Almost anything strategy/tactical is difficult for me to get into. It’s not generally because the games suck, it’s because I suck. I’ve played three Advance Wars games and I can’t finish them without a detailed walkthrough or a cheat device. Same goes for the old-school Warcraft games, Civilization, X-COM… the list goes on and on. I just can’t do it.

The exception to this rule would be Fire Emblem because you can take the time to level up your characters. But if you set me down with a tactical game with set resources each time I play, I will probably be unable to finish it. And then I will rage quit and go drown my sorrows in gummy bears.

 Myles Farrington, Editor:

There are actually a lot of really popular franchises I don’t enjoy. There’s Call of Duty, Battlefield, Assassin’s Creed, FarCry, and honestly I’m sure there’s more that I just can’t remember. I suppose for Call of Duty and Battlefield it’s just because I don’t like the play style of Battlefield and neither of them have ever really impressed me. The single player seems to be dull and the multiplayer is full of jerks. That’s actually why I don’t enjoy League of Legends either. It seems like everyone that I get matched up with iis an absolute douche. Also I’m not particularly good at MOBAs so that doesn’t help the problem.

When it comes to Assassin’s Creed I got bored with the game play and after hearing my friend explain the story to me I think it’s absolutely ridiculous. As for some other popular titles I can’t really judge them because I haven’t played them.

Colin Conroy, Editor:

I don’t think that I’ve ever really played a game that I actually disliked. I have a pretty good idea of what I’m interested in, and I always read reviews, so I haven’t encountered many truly bad games. However, there are some famous and successful franchises that I’ve just never tried out. I hope to be able to try each of them at some point in the future, but it’s hard to go back to older games when so much new content is released every month.

I think that the most glaring omission from my game repertoire is probably the Final Fantasy series. I love RPGS in general, and I’m sure that I’d love these games, but the sheer number of games in the series that I’ve missed is kind of overwhelming. Nevertheless, I’ll probably purchase one of the more popular titles in the near future. Another popular franchise that I’ve largely neglected is Zelda. To be honest, I did play Twilight Princess, but I never finished it. I do regret that decision, but frankly, I was never really that interested in playing almost anything on my Wii. In the end though, I hope that I will have the time to go back to some of the franchises that I missed in the past.

 Aaron Dobbe, Editor:

If a franchise involves shooting things with guns, chances are it’s on the list. The entire FPS genre is completely baffling to me; I find the basic controls unnecessarily complex (I want to feel like I’m playing as a person, not a tank) and the very idea of pointing a cursor at a bad guy and pressing a button to instantly reduce its health to be fundamentally disinteresting. It’s not for lack of trying, either. I’ve tried Call of Duty, Halo, Half-Life, and many others. I just never found that spark that made it fun. I will say that I enjoyed the classic Doom series, simply because of the fact that you didn’t have to aim vertically in those games. That simple restriction, combined with the fact that the games were super fast-paced, made the games simple yet challenging enough that I was able to have fun with them.

A few other franchises to add: 3D Zelda (unsatisfying combat and a story that doesn’t deserve the amount of time spent telling it), Pokemon (not really sure why; on paper it sounds like a game I’d love but it just never got its hooks in me), World of Warcraft (a boring RPG doesn’t get better for me because a bunch of other people are playing it), Street Fighter (which generally ends up hurting my hands before I can get comfortable with the controls and systems), and wow I think I just realized how bitter and grumpy I am. Obviously, I don’t mind that other people find joy in these games, but I can’t really understand why.

 Mike Morrissette, Editor:

I hate Call of Duty. I hate it, I hate it, I hate it, I hate it. It’s not fun, the game play is never innovative, there’s a new one every freakin’ year, and I hate it. I really don’t see the appeal, and not only that, the game border lines on mildly racist. It’s not okay. Don’t get me wrong though, I love shooting up some bad guys every now and again. Give me Halo and I can play that for hours unending. But Call of Duty just perpetuates this horrendous idea of what a “bad guy” is or is not. Like, I get it, 9/11 was a big deal, no one is denying this. The problem however comes into play when we as a people somehow synonymize “bad guy” with “arab man in a turban” and Call of Duty (along with various other shooters) do just that.

I hate these games. I hate them, I hate them, and I hate them. I also hate that these games are somehow deemed “more acceptable” than games that have tasteful sex scenes. Take Heavy Rain for example, I know so many people that cringed during the sex scene, or let’s go one step further and talk about Dragon Age’s same-sex sex scene. That shit caused riots in various communities, yet does anyone bat a freakin’ eye when the goal of the game is kill as many people as possible? No, not nearly to the extent of what happened with Bioware and their various same-sex sex scenes, or just their sex scenes in general.

Call of Duty isn’t going anywhere though, it’ll always be around and that’s what I hate the most about it. Though Kevin Spacey is in the upcoming iteration, that is however, literally the only thing that game has ever done right.

 Landon Luthi, Editor:

In a world overcrowded with video games, we are constantly drawn to new concepts in art, originality and inventiveness.  And then there is Call of Duty.  Chewing on stale cardboard is more interesting than indulging myself to a round of deathmatch in the world’s smallest map.  There is recycling a game, and then there is publishing the same game twice times thrice.  

To be fair, I really enjoyed Modern Warfare and Modern Warfare II.  That snowmobile level in MWII was unforgettable.  After these two games, the rest of the COD franchise felt like similar versions before, just with updated colors and shades.  

I fail to understand how this series could be so popular, when it has been running a path of degenerating and unchanged gameplay for years.  While I recognize that my opinion isn’t agreeable with those who enjoy Call of Duty, I can also distinguish from when my opinion doesn’t suck.    

Call of Duty is like the diarrhea of video games.  It’s a painful experience in your gut that only leaves us with the same watered down crap as before.  Call of Duty is also like an angry bastard child who has more friends on his kickball team than you do, and you can’t figure out why he still has friends after nearly a decade of being the same, inconsiderate hack.  

I had a friend who tried DayZ for the first time during last summer.  After we finished, he said “yeah, it’s okay.  It’s no Call of Duty though.”    #HADafriend

Now with dogs!

There are all kinds of controversial questions out there regarding the video game industry.  Each and every Wednesday we will ask each member to give their opinion on one of them.   Every once in a while we will have simpler questions that are more of a “Get to know your editor” type question. This will give you a chance to see that we are not all like minded and have a wide range of opinions.    Also: You the readers can submit questions for us to answer here.  So feel free to submit them to this story or emailing them to

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