Everyone has their own ‘one that got away’: a video game they know they should really finish but just can’t do it. Whether it’s down to limited available time, a preference for playing a different genre when we do have an hour to spare, or being distracted by newer releases, we all have a title we started but which now sits gathering dust in a dark corner of our gaming library.
Earlier this week I wrote about the reason why I can’t bring myself to complete Dreamfall Chapters, despite adoring The Longest Journey series since first playing it in 2006. It seems like a ridiculous one now it has been put into words on the screen before me: I don’t want to finish it because that would mean the end of the story. But regardless of how silly that is, I’m not yet ready to push forward to the finale and watch the credits roll.
Dreamfall Chapters isn’t the only title by Ragnar Tørnquist that I haven’t been able to complete; there’s another which torments me just as much, albeit for a different cause. This ties in nicely with a question put forward by Dan from The Couch Petito as part of his recent Unique Blogger Award (for which I’m very grateful and humbly thank him for!). Which game did you start but not finish either because it was too difficult or not for you?
Since being introduced to the world of indie gaming and creating my Steam account a number of years ago, there were two releases I wanted to play. The first was To The Moon, which I completed in one sitting and then promptly added to my list of favourite games. The other was The Secret World (relaunched last summer as Secret World Legends), a ‘story-driven shared-world action RPG’ developed by Funcom.
The main reason for this was the fact it had been directed by Tørnquist, the person who’d had a major hand in creating The Longest Journey. The other was the story hook: ‘Players plunge into a shadowy war against the supernatural, where ancient myths and legends cross over into the modern day. Armed with both weapons and superhuman abilities, you will build your powers, solve deep mysteries, and destroy terrifying evils to uncover a dark and captivating storyline that traverses the globe. Can you reveal the truth?’
Well, I certainly wanted to try and do just that. But it just didn’t work out that way.
My Steam profile shows I’ve played five hours but I can’t have made it more than 30 minutes into the game. I can’t seem to get my fingers around the controls: I’m not the most coordinated person at the best of times, but there’s just something about The Secret World which turns me into a button-mashing-mess. Keyboards have been pushed to the floor and mice thrown across the room in bouts of frustration before ‘uninstall’ is clicked.
I’ve tried to play this game at least ten times and the sad thing is, I still want to. I have a feeling I’d really enjoy it if only I could overcome that initial hurdle. My other-half tried to help by learning and teaching me the control scheme a couple of years ago; but that training session was short-lived after a mouse was launched and missed his head by inches (sorry Pete).
I recently purchased Monster Hunter: World and after a few hours of playing, I thought it was going to go the same way as The Secret World. But after getting some good advice from Ben, The Optimistic Gamer and Daniel from Home Button, I’ve actually been able to stick with it (changing to the Dual Blades really helped). I doubt it’ll ever make my favourite games list but I proud of myself for persevering.
So it could be that’s what I need for The Secret World: some more good advice. And with the combat system having been redesigned for the Secret World Legends relaunch last year, perhaps I need to try again. Maybe it’s time to turn this ‘one that got away’ into the ‘one that I finally got to grips with’.