The Daily Grind: What’s the worst type of minigame in MMOs?

    
23
It's an old deck, I swear.

Today’s Daily Grind was inspired by Roger over at Contains Moderate Peril, who penned a fun piece on minigames a few weeks back. Oh, did I say fun? I meant grumpy. But justifiably grumpy, in my opinion. He begins by pointing out that most MMO minigamers are harmless and even fun. But…

“Then there’s a third type of minigame. One that is mandatory and integral to moving forward within the confines of the game. It acts as a gatekeeper and blocks further progression until it is completed. Minigames of this nature are universally reviled and are often an anathema to gamers. Furthermore they’re often considered ‘lazy game making’. If the player cannot complete the minigame in question then they may as well uninstall the game that they’re playing as they cannot progress any further.”

Nobody likes these types. I’d add to the pile the grindy minigames that you must complete ad nauseam for some arbitrary reason. I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time this year doing the SWG Legends Meatlump themepark grind, which is basically several puzzler minigames (unscrambles, code unlocks, color guessers) over and over and over, just to unlock some crafting recipes. Along the way, I met some folks doing it so they could have a house with windows. Nobody was actually having any fun. So why was it there?

What’s the worst type of minigame in MMOs?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
Advertisement

No posts to display

23
LEAVE A COMMENT

Please Login to comment
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most liked
Subscribe to:
Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Peregrine Falcon

I love jumping puzzles! And I also hate jumping puzzles.

I love them in GW2, where they’re done well and the jumping works well. I hate them in SWTOR, where the unresponsive engine and the horrible jumping make jumping puzzles a huge nightmare.

I do agree that achievements or other content should never be gated behind jumping puzzles. Some people just can’t do them.

EmberStar
Reader
EmberStar

Jumping puzzles.

The next closest runner-up is some of the “resource collection” minigames in Star Trek Online. I’m pretty convinced their primary goal is to screw with people who use bots or macros, followed by the apparent goal of making collecting a trivial amount of resources into a tedious chore that takes at least 30 seconds every single time. Being “fun” was never part of the design.

Demon of Razgriz
Reader
Demon of Razgriz

STO has one mission (Boldly They Rode) with two of the most annoying mini games: the isolinear chips and the rerouting of the internal sensors. The isolinear one shows up on multiple missions throughout the game and they’re annoying as hell. Add in the jacked up jumping mechanics in Tenebris Torquent and you cover three annoying mini game tropes.

Reader
styopa

I know it’s not precisely what you meant, but man I hate the “inventory minigame” every game makes you play. Whether it’s the inventory tetris of PoE, or just fixed bank inventories (when did a bank or storage facility last say “hey, whoa, we don’t have enough space for you, paying customer!”…then again, they DO charge IRL too…).

Reader
Hirku Two

It’s not a mini-game, but instead of saying jumping puzzles like everybody else I’m giving a dishonorable mention to stealth. Sabotage missions in TSW were terrible: no visibility indicator, no avoidance and reacquiring stealth, one mistake and you’re dead.

Reader
Hurbster

They had jumping puzzles with stealth sections.

Reader
Hurbster

Jumping puzzles, screw you datacrons!

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Java Jawa

Yea seriously, still to this day there are some I haven’t gotten.

Reader
mars omg

I’ve not met a minigame I don’t like. Anything that takes me out of the repetitiveness that is all mmo’s is a +++ for me.

Reader
wjowski

Pretty much anything that relies on quick reflexes, like jumping puzzles as has been repeatedly mentioned. Most MMOs just don’t have the netcode for that.

Fisty
Reader
Fisty

I hate it when skills like archaeology become mini games. ESO’s antiquities suuuucks. I’m the only person who enjoys a jumping puzzle or ten.

Reader
Dug From The Earth

Anything that makes me wait and come back in a few hours/days time.

Anything that employs gameplay not suited for the genre, or supported by the game engine well. IE: Jumping puzzles, FPS mechanics, RTS mechanics, etc.

Jumping puzzles are some of the worst violators of this, as most engines do NOT implement decent jumping mechanics. Its often unresponsive, super inaccurate, glitchy and applying horrible controls. Toss in elements like different sized character models and you end up with a super frustrating, temperamental experience.

Turing fail
Reader
Patreon Donor
Turing fail

Anything that makes me wait and come back in a few hours/days time.

Agreed- games shouldn’t have the equivalent of a password failure lockout period.