Generally, when playing a video game, it's perfectly normal to follow the advice of NPCs or loading screen tips. However, sometimes this isn't the best strategy. For several reasons, what can appear to be the logical course of action isn't the proper path. Games have sarcastic tips, lying characters, or even translations from a different region that aren't accurate.
These kinds of moments create real trust issues. How can developers play without emotions like that? Remember always to play games with a bit of suspicion.
10/10 Opening Sequence In Castlevania 2: Simon's Quest
When whip-swinging Simon Belmont begins Castlevania 2 in Jova, the first townsperson tells him to buy a White Crystal. These instructions are fine, as it feels like some primitive NES version of a small quest. However, the next townsperson throws in some confusion by saying, “there’s a crooked trader offering bum deals in this town,” which causes everybody worth their salt to think differently about buying said white crystal.
The issue was the translation job on Castlevania 2 wasn’t good. The second townsperson was supposed to say, “In the towns, there are sellers who do business in hiding.” That’s certainly a bit different. Castlevania 2 is full of cryptic and weird advice, so save yourself the pain and get a walkthrough of the game.
9/10 World Of Warcraft's Advice For Dealing With Enemies
For one of World of Warcraft’s loading tips, the game reads, “Struggling with a tough foe? Remember just keep your Health above zero while lowering your enemy’s Health to zero. Works every time!” This tip should immediately cause you to grab your computer, throw it out the window, and scream at one of the most pointless tips in video game history.
With a game as complex as World of Warcraft, you would think there would be more helpful tips than this. Or are the developers just trolling? Sure, this tip is technically correct, but sometimes being right is wrong.
8/10 The Princess’ Letters In Super Mario Three
This instance stumped a lot of grade schoolers while playing Super Mario Bros. 3. One of the letters from the princess tells Mario there is a Warp Whistle hidden to the right in World 3. This letter is wrong. So wrong. There is no Warp Whistle in World 3.
What the letter meant to say was there is a Warp Whistle hidden to the right of level three in World One. This advice was so bad they eventually fixed it for Super Mario Advance 4 on the GBA. The change was to correct the sloppy direction-giving by Peach. In another letter, she says the P Wing will protect you against ghosts, which is also not true. Many Mario lives were whittled away during the 90s because of this advice.
7/10 Pickpocket Loading Screen In Skyrim
One of Skyrim’s many loading screens reads, "The Pickpocket skill is used to take things from an unsuspecting target’s pockets… and not get caught in the process.” Gee, thanks. We had no clue what the pickpocket skill was for before. How about telling us about fishing instead?
Pickpocketing had been in Morrowind already, and most RPG players were at least modestly familiar with stealing stuff. This tip wasn’t some earth-shattering info, Bethesda. Why did you put it on your loading screen instead of something that might be useful?
6/10 Take Everything In Moderation, Even World Of Warcraft
This tip is another World of Warcraft entry because we spent many hours playing the game, seeing plenty of loading screen tips. This one might take the cake in suggesting that you "take everything in moderation, even World of Warcraft."
That's rich coming from a game that is so fun and easy to get sucked into. It's not uncommon for players to go on for hours on end. Should we go outside and enjoy the sun instead of going on another raid? Sure. Are we going to do that? Nope. World of Warcraft, you're just patronizing us.
5/10 Narrator In The Stanley Parable
This all-knowing voice in The Stanley Parable gives you dry, sarcastic statements to glean what to do next. Sometimes the Narrator makes fun of you. Sometimes the Narrator plays the antagonist. In one ending for the game, he tells you to jump off a platform and then says he made a miscalculation.
In another, he tricks you about the existence of your wife. The unreliable Narrator is always a fun concept, and it's played out perfectly here as The Stanley Parable is one of the best parody games you can find.
4/10 Quest-Giving In Morrowind
We love Morrowind and its expansive world. It is one of the best games ever made. For many of us, it was also our first introduction to the Elder Scrolls. That said, NPCs giving quests are like stopping at a gas station in Ohio and asking for directions. Sometimes the NPC gives out the wrong information.
Sometimes NPCs give out the correct information, but they're recorded in the journal incorrectly. Sometimes an NPC is so cryptic and vague that you might as well be combing the desert like in Spaceballs while trying to find their objective. Did we mention there is no wayfinding in the game? Morrowind wants to make you the perpetually lost person in Tamriel.
3/10 Alien: Isolation's Tip For Dealing With Survivors
The atmospheric masterpiece Alien: Isolation is good at making everyone feel terrified. This feeling is because the game has a scary Xenomorph, but there are also more dangers. Sometimes an in-game hint pops up, reading, "Leave survivors alone, and they’ll leave you alone."
This hint makes you think that all survivors will leave you alone, but that is not true. Some will begin attacking you when you see them. Perhaps the loading screen is falling apart along with Sevastopol Station.
2/10 Katie Zhan (Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas)
In Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, the NPC Katie Zhan will tell you to drive faster. This action will cause her happiness meter to decrease rapidly. Because of her happiness dropping, she will leave you.
To avoid this heartbreak, remain driving at a relatively low speed to keep her happy. We hope that in most games, NPC’s would tell you what they want, but with Zhan, that is not the case.
1/10 Command And Conquer: Red Alert Mission Objectives
In one Soviet mission in Command and Conquer: Red Alert, if you do what most people do while playing an RTS game – achieve the mission objectives – you will lose the mission. To win and advance, you must fail the mission.
This caveat, however, is not made clear by the game. Thanks for making it clear as mud, game designers. Red Alert even has a cutscene with the leaders mad that you failed the mission.
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