6 Tiny Glitches That Ruined Video Games Hilariously
Video game glitches come in many forms. Most are harmless, but some can change games in profound ways, like by making them unintentionally terrifying or turning them into surreal comedic masterpieces. But every so often, a small screw-up in the code has the power to make a game unplayable in a most unexpected way. For example ...
A Friday The 13th Glitch Gave The Heroes Giant Weapons
Friday The 13th is a game wherein one person plays immortal serial killer Jason Voorhees, while the others play a bunch of teenage campers about to be killed by immortal serial killer Jason Voorhees. For them, the objective of the game isn't even to win, but to survive long enough to escape, their pathetic guns and weapons merely slowing down Jason during his Barely Legal killing spree. Except with one glitch, the campers' puny weapons might not be so puny at all.
In a game that's all about frantically running and grabbing and fighting, players quickly figured out that by doing a few specific actions in quick succession, they could gain an unfair advantage. All you needed to do was find a flare gun and an (untouched) melee weapon, then fire the flare as high as you dare and immediately pick up the weapon. Why would you do this? Because the weapon would get an abrupt upgrade:
Because of the glitch, that humble car wrench is now so big it could wrench the whole goddamn car. Why? For some reason, the game gets confused whenever a flare is briefly flying around, and when you then pick up a weapon, it dumbly recalculates the height of the weapon to be the same height that the flare was fired at, making weapons like the 2x4 and the hand ax so massive that their names sound like they're supposed to be ironic.
But while the weapons sure looked a lot more intimidating, it's not as if they did any more damage to the unkillable Jason. What did change, however, was their reach, meaning those scared teens could hit their implacable stalker from ridiculously far away. And if you've ever seen a Friday The 13th movie, you know that Jason thinks he's too cool to run. So while he was slowly lumbering toward his victims, those victims could cave his head in with a 40-foot ax long before he could get into stabbing range.
The exploit has since been patched out for balance reasons, marking perhaps the first time that a multiplayer game has been fixed in order to give the massively overpowered character a better chance.
Bloodborne's Bosses Would Get Tired If You Left The Game On Too Long
Bloodborne is the spiritual successor to the Dark Souls series, best known for being the Dark Souls of hard video games. In those games, bosses could only be beaten after fighting them over and over again until you figured out their every move. But in Bloodborne, players figured out an easier way to beat these sinister villains: Wait until it was past their bedtime and tucker them out.
After a 12-hour Bloodborne marathon, Redditor and obvious masochist Meatballz noticed that despite his frayed nerves and lack of sleep, the game was becoming much easier. He figured out that the longer he left the game on, the less active the bosses were, as if they were getting tired. Take Martyr Logarius, a wizard king who sits atop a menacing tower and shreds through enemies with his ghost skulls and wicked scythes. But after many in-game hours, sitting on his snow-covered roofs really wears this old magician down, causing him to forget all of his spells and his ability to fly.
He's not the only one suffering from burnout. Most bosses would resort to their laziest attacks. Mergo's Wet Nurse would just wander around flailing like confused old biddy. And Ebrietas, Daughter of the Cosmos, trips over her many grasping limbs for a cozy little lie-down. But the saddest little sleepy boss has to be Micolash, a dark sorcerer who gets all of his powers from the Lovecraftian tentacled nightmares he summons. But those tentacles get tired of waiting to be summoned, reducing him to flailing at the players with his bare fists.
A Glitch Crashed The Elder Scrolls Online's Entire Economy
Unless you're one of the people from that documentary The Big Short, you can't simply make up money up out of thin air. But in video games, banking regulations aren't as strict as in the real world. That's a lesson many Elder Scrolls Online players learned when they logged in one day and their imaginary money had somehow become even more imaginary.
When The Elder Scrolls Online was released in 2014, former beta players were pleasantly surprised -- not that the game had gotten a lot better since the testing phase (it hadn't), but that Bethesda had for some reason neglected to patch out a massive glitch. This glitch allowed players to go into their guild bank vaults and duplicate items and gold so easily that many wound up doing it by accident. This caused massive inflation, turning expensive weapons and armor that used to be the fantasy equivalent of a Ferrari into the fantasy equivalent of a Pontiac Aztek. The unplanned injection of cash and luxury goods almost instantly tanked the entire game's economy, and the game itself. After all, if you can afford to buy the Heroic Blade of Awesomeness at Level 1, what's the point of grinding all those dungeons to earn it fair and square?
The developers responded in the same calm and informed way actual governments respond to financial crises, i.e. they panicked and shut it all down. All of the game's guild banks were closed to prevent players from accessing the glitch while it was patched. That also meant that players couldn't access all of the loot and equipment they had stored in their accounts, turning many guilds into Middle-earth Enrons. In the aftermath, thousands of players were also permabanned for using the glitch. You know you're playing a fantasy game when the people responsible for ruining the economy are actually punished for it.
A Guitar Hero 2 Patch Killed A Bunch Of Xboxes
Gamers all fear the game-breaking bug, the tiny little glitch that turns it unplayable and undoes all of the imaginary progress they've been making. But then Guitar Hero 2 came along and showed us something worse than a game-breaking bug: a console-breaking patch.
When Guitar Hero 2 finally hit the stage, many Xbox 360 players started reporting that their controller guitar's whammy bar wasn't responding well, costing them plenty of high scores. Developer Red Octane responded swiftly, promising a performance patch to waylay the wonky whammy. To their credit, the patch did its job, as many players could indeed no longer see any problems with their whammy bar. Mostly because their consoles wouldn't turn on.
Immediately after the patch's release, Xbox and Guitar Hero forums were flooded with posts from players saying their 360 was freezing up and displaying the dreaded red ring of death. People who'd installed the patch were warned to not turn on their consoles and risk them getting infected by the bad whammy. Eventually, Red Octane admitted that their code had caused the massacre and fixed the patch, but not before sending many Xboxes to the big Mario Party in the sky.
For Honor Doesn't Bother To Fix A Bug Before A Big Tournament
For Honor is a war historian's worst nightmare / wet dream: a fighting game pitting knights against samurai against vikings. In the game, players enter a battlefield and duel each other for glory and h- well, you know. But for a game that's so focused on being honorable that they even put it in the title, the developers sure didn't mind their players fighting dirty.
Some pro gamers figured out that For Honor suffered from a terrible exploit which they referred to as "Unlock Tech," whereby after locking onto an opponent, one could make their attacks faster and unblockable by quickly unlocking and re-locking. That's potentially ruinous for a competitive multiplayer game like For Honor, but developer Ubisoft ignored the problem for months, to the point that gamers posted Unlock Tech how-to guides on the official forums and subreddits, assuming Ubisoft was perfectly fine with them breaking their game.
But that lackadaisical attitude quickly changed after the most disastrous gaming tournament ever. In order to celebrate For Honor's third competitive season, Ubisoft hosted a tournament with a massive $10,000 prize for the winner, drawing in elite gamers from across the world. But fortune favors the bold, i.e. people willing to openly cheat during a contest of skill. The champion, Jakub Palen, easily swept through the tournament, going undefeated by abusing the glitch. Palen was so cocky about it that he accepted his ten grand by saying, "I didn't think it would be this easy." To Ubisoft's credit, the tournament did achieve its goal of spreading awareness of their game. Unfortunately, it only made people aware that For Honor was a bug-riddled embarrassment.
A Typo Resulted In One Of The Biggest Video Game Bombs Of All Time
You'd think that a movie about fighting double-jawed, acid-blooded aliens would make for a kickass video game, but for some reason, almost every single Alien game has looked less like a desperate struggle for survival in the coldness of space and more like a bunch of dots being chased by a glow-in-the-dark gator toy from a Happy Meal.
That was all going to change with the release of the big-budget Aliens: Colonial Marines, a first-person shooter developed by AAA studio Gearbox Software. But while the xenomorphs certainly looked like badasses, they sure didn't act like it.
The game was in development for six long years, which you'd think would be enough time to iron out all of the kinks. But when fans finally got their hands on the game, they immediately figured out that the alien AI was so clueless that you could just walk past them without as much as a single claw swipe. That's not because these perfect killing machines had suddenly become tree-hugging pacifists. They just didn't notice you.
Because of the useless enemies, the game was a bomb, earning terrible reviews and less money than a secondhand Nostromo. Worst of all, Gearbox never figured out why their xenomorphs wandered around like confused cats. But after years of searching, modder jamesdickinson963 found what was scrambling the AI: a single typo. Instead of typing "tether," one careless programmer had accidentally spelled it "teather." That's a big problem, because the tether system would determine the areas in which the enemies would try to seek and destroy the player, while the "teather" system doesn't activate their killer instinct, leaving the xenomorphs as docile and harmless as kittens.
With the insidious vowel removed, Aliens: Colonial Marines turns into a much more enjoyable game, with some reviewers going back to change their opinion from "unplayably terrible" to "kinda average." But was turning the Aliens: Colonial Marines into a functioning 6/10 game really worth destroying the only simulator of a peaceful human/xenomorph relationship really worth it? Now we'll probably never see humans and xenomorphs walk awkwardly side by side again.
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