Why Don’t You Just Play on a Console?

By Shamus Posted Sunday Mar 20, 2011

Filed under: Rants 207 comments


I have a wireless 360 controller for the PC. It’s a handy little thing, great for routing around horrible ports by letting me use the intended control scheme. The downside is that because PC ports are often performed by sadistic idiots, the controller doesn’t always work. We know this. Until we can find these people and have them killed for sport, we are at their mercy. That is not what this rant is about.

It’s an annoying problem: A game designed for the Xbox 360 (or one of the other leading brands) which was built around that controller. Yet the PC port of the game is baffled by the same controller. It can’t find it, or the buttons don’t all work, or some actions are keyboard-only, or a joystick axis is reversed. Inevitably, beleaguered PC gamers will turn to Google for help. Google will scour the length and breadth of the internet, finding a small island of relevant discussion in that terrifyingly vast ocean of data. It will come up with four of five pages where your exact problem is discussed. You will go to these pages, and you will bear witness to some of the most obstinate imbeciles that the human race has yet sired. The question will be posed:

Q: Hey, I’m trying to run Metal Gears of Warfare Zone III on the PC, but it doesn’t recognize my USB Xbox controller. Any advice?

And then our villain takes the stage:

A: why u play on pc just use xbox version works great

Maybe there really are millions of these people. Maybe this is the work of a single prolific madman. This reply is deviously destructive in a number of ways:

1) Unless you are Yoda or an aged Kung-Fu master speaking to his young pupil, don’t answer a question with a question. It just makes it obvious that you don’t know anything.

2) Obviously it’s infuriating to be told to buy another copy of a game you already own. (And maybe the console to go with it.) Duh. Obviously that would work. The person is probably looking for a solution that doesn’t cost four hundred dollars.

3) It’s a thread jack. Nobody answers the original question, and instead it begins another console vs. PC flame war.

4) It misses the point of the game itself. Rather than asking the original poster why they bought the given version of the game, why not ask the publisher why they released it on this platform if they weren’t going to bother supporting it?

This same little drama plays out on forum after forum. Page after page. Post after post. Herp after derp. Google doesn’t know any better, and so the search results are clogged with this nonsense instead of useful data.

But I will answer this impertinent question once and for all. The next time one of these ankle-biters shows up, feel free to bestow the following gem of wisdom:

I bought this game on the PC because I know and relate to other human beings, a thing which is evidently completely foreign to you. Being blessed with these social skills, I’m not going to sit in the living room and make the rest of my family watch me bend Yeoman Chambers over the galaxy map for a Renegade Interrupt. Unlike your parents, I don’t want my kids growing up warped and damaged, so I’m not going to harvest zombie heads while they are watching. Unlike you, my kids are going to learn to speak English, but I don’t want them to learn it from Kane & Lynch.

I realize things must seem very clear to you, sitting in your bedroom with a console machine on one side and a seven-year-old, porn-infested PC on the other. But the variables that go into buying decisions are complex beyond your understanding, and if you saw the world beyond your filth-pit it would blow your mind.

I forgive you for your monumental ignorance, only shut your drool-maker and leave this thread to people who know what they’re talking about.

And because I know some people will be curious as to what set this off: Er. Several things. I’ve run into more than one controller-deficient game this weekend, but Dead Rising 2 has won the prize for “most baffling technology clusterfarg”.


This is another one of those games that attaches both Steam AND Games for Windows Live to the title, like a bicycle with a filing cabinet attached to one side and a dead plague horse on the other. The hilarious part is that GFWL can sense the controller. I can bring up GFWL, navigate the menus, and everything else with the controller. But the game itself can’t see it. It acts like the controller doesn’t exist.

I’m just one man. I can’t possibly hate all of this stupidity by myself. There just aren’t enough hours in the day.


From The Archives:

207 thoughts on “Why Don’t You Just Play on a Console?

  1. mad_wolf / lupus_amens says:

    don’t worry i am helping you hate it

    1. Zeta Kai says:

      I can spare some hate for this cause. It is just, & therefore worthy of my (un)holy spite.

    2. some random dood says:

      Hate is a negative emotion, and does more harm to the hater than the hatee.
      However, in this case, I’m right there with you O_o

      1. CTrees says:

        Only if the hater is lazy or poorly armed.

      2. Lame Brain says:

        I beleive that stupidity is a negative emotion, and should hurt those who suffer from it more than those who suffer from stupid people. Unfortunately, this seems to rarely be the case.

    3. evileeyore says:

      I have nothing but hate for things, so Shamus just keep pointing out the hateful things and rest easy knowing I am on the job, hating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    4. Darkstarr says:

      I’d help you hate this stupidity too, but I have WAAAYY too much other stupidity to hate already. Sorry.

      OTOH, pity The Force doesn’t exist in real life, because all the cumulative Dark Side power we could generate from our combined hatred of needless stupidity would unleash a bolt of Force Lightning so powerful that not only would it vaporize entire trailer parks in an instant, but the result of vaporizing so many stupid people at once would not only instantly solve the Earth’s overpopulation problems for millennia, but also raise the average IQ of the human race to at least 4 digits.

  2. eric says:

    It’s okay, I put up with stupid every day. It’s like a full-time job for me, and that nobody pays me for trying to make the world a better place is actually kind of sad. I’d like to think that when I die of starvation, people will lament my loss at their hands… but more likely they’ll crowd around their TVs and start calling each other “faggots” over their phony console Internet.

    Also, I find as a PC gamer you need to have two controllers to play games properly: an Xbox 360 gamepad, and an older pad. The problem is that many new games use the XInput API for their gamepad input, which the Xbox 360 uses, but some titles, especially older ones, don’t play so nice with it and so basically have to guess (Psychonauts, for instance, doesn’t work so well). You can also try using the software Xpadder, which can translate XInput API calls to software that normally isn’t compatible.

    1. HeroOfHyla says:

      Definitely. I had to scour the net for a proper XInput extension for Game Maker when I was experimenting with controller input, so that the trigger buttons would be treated as 2 separate axes rather than 2 halves of 1 axis (if it does that, then the two triggers cancel each other out if you press both). If memory serves I found the .dlls and had to compile them into a Game Maker Extension Package myself.
      Then I discovered that people need to have some special 360 controller program from Microsoft installed for the extension to work, so that was a bust.

      1. Bryan says:

        Wait, what? They named some random new DirectX interface *XInput*? Are they insane?


        The above is copyright 1988, 1990, and 1992, with the most recent revision in 1995. *YEARS* older than this DirectX nonsense.

        Sigh. Way to be utterly confusing, guys.

      2. Rosseloh says:

        Oh, is that why when I’m playing Zelda 64 with my 360 controller, I can’t Z-target and use my shield at the same time (at least, with them set to the full-range triggers)?

        Good to know, thanks.

    2. Mike says:

      A couple of the new Logitech controllers actually have a switch on them that’ll change between XInput and the old standard (DirectInput I think?). It actually shows up to the computer as two different gamepads. I just got my F710 and haven’t had a chance to try it out yet, but most of the reviews I saw were positive.

      1. BeamSplashX says:

        Mine works just fine. I actually ditched the Logitech software for the 360 drivers so that I can use compatible games without an extra program running. I use JoyToKey for any game with either no controller support or TERRIBLE controller support. It’s not perfect, but it’s easily more bearable.

  3. Hal says:

    Hey, don’t be hatin’ on 7-year old computers. Some of us can’t afford an upgrade these days (not that there’s much worth upgrading for anyhow).

    And that porn infestation? Uh, that’s not mine. Must’ve been from a pop-up or a virus.

    1. Falcon_47 says:

      “Some of us can't afford an upgrade these days” Aside from the ppl i know who have more than 2 consoles in their homes. I myself only upgrade my pc every couple of years, at around the same rate new console generations come out, so in the end i spend around the same amount of money as my friends, who call me a moron for actually playing games on the PC. Go figure…

      1. StranaMente says:

        Always wanted to be a pc gamer, but actually couldn’t afford to buy a new pc, so I just bought a xbox until I had enough spare to do it.
        Now it’s almost five years with my xbox and one with my pc, and I’m happy this way. I don’t regret the money spent on both of ’em.

        Besides I need a laptop for my needs/work, so upgrading it is not possible, and I can only buy a decent pc at a time.
        If I could use a desktop I would spend less and be more happy for longer time. As it is, I’m quite happy, having spent a quite large sum for a good computer (700 €). South italy is not the best place to make your gaming rig at an affordable price. More so if you have to use a laptop…

      2. Antwon says:

        I myself only upgrade my pc every couple of years, at around the same rate new console generations come out

        This rate of console releases may have been true in the past, but clearly no longer holds. The XBOX 360 was released in November 2005 – five-and-change years ago! – and while they’ve added new form factors and made larger hard drives available since then, there’s still no next-generation console so much as announced yet.

        1. Syal says:

          They really need to get on that. I’m still waiting for the Playstation 9.

  4. Tengokujin says:

    It is a difficult task to hate so widely and thoroughly, surely we can help!

  5. Jeysie says:

    I’ve noticed that phenomenon in general, really. You or someone else will ask some variant on “I’m having trouble figuring out how to do x on y.” And people will go, “Well, there’s your problem, you’re using y. Use z instead.” Maybe, oh, 20% of the time this will actually be a helpful response because you literally can’t do x on y or something. The rest of the time it’s like, “I have my reasons for using y, thanks, so how about you just… I dunno, tell me how to do x on y like I asked? Because I don’t care about z, I care about y.”

    It’s definitely annoying.

    1. Heron says:


      Early last year I wanted to run Gentoo in a chroot jail on a RHEL 3 host. I knew how to set it up, but unfortunately, the host’s kernel was too old to support the latest Gentoo stage 3, Gentoo’s mirrors did not have stage 3s old enough, and a Google search proved fruitless. I could not upgrade the host machine at the time for various reasons.

      So, in desperation, I went to #gentoo on freenode. (I do mean I went in desperation; I’ve only ever met like two friendly people on freenode.) I asked how I could get an old stage 3 to satisfy my needs. You can guess the answers:

      – LOL
      – n00b
      – Google it
      – You don’t want to do that.
      – That’s a bad idea.
      – Upgrade your host.
      – RTFM

      And so on and so forth, with nobody even attempting to answer my actual question. The responses Shamus mentioned are much worse when they’re in real time and six people are telling you why you are stupid for asking the question.

      1. Rallion says:

        I think it’s getting better over time, but the Linux community in particular is known for this kind of “help.” It often feels like the handful of people who actually want to help others are drowned out by a sea of people who are just interested in making sure you know how smart they are.

        God forbid you actually be a “n00b”! You’re only allowed to use Linux if you already use Linux.

        1. jdaubenb says:

          They’re just trying to protect you from growing horrible facial hair.

          1. MelTorefas says:

            Lol seconded for truth.

      2. Nathon says:

        Odd. I’ve gotten useful help in #debian and, very recently, #mercurial on freenode. Maybe I’m just lucky in that I tend to bump into people who hack on the particular project I’m struggling with at the moment. Maybe Gentoo types are mean? Maybe Shamus’ antagonists were all in #gentoo right then.

        1. Ian says:

          I’ve found that the Gentoo community is generally pretty kind. Granted, I haven’t IRC’d with any of them, but they are generally very helpful on the forums.

          1. MrPyro says:

            Yeah, I used to hang out in the Gentoo forums, and the community was normally pretty good.

            My main issue with Gentoo was that if you didn’t update quite frequently, you could easily end up unable to update due to dependency issues. Sooner or later you get sick of wrestling with Linux issues all day just to come home and have even more.

            1. Ian says:

              If you have a bunch of time to kill (especially if you’re dealing with monsters like OpenOffice) an “emerge -e system” should resolve that. I’ve only had to do that once, thankfully.

              In an absolute worst-case scenario, rebuilding stage1 (bootstrap.sh) should do the trick.

              But yeah, in general, Gentoo gets pretty hairy if you don’t update it regularly. If you don’t run into any dependency issues (which seem to have been generally averted these last couple of years) you’ll wind up spending an eternity updating half of your system.

              Even so, Gentoo is still the distro that I’ve had the second fewest problems with (with Debian being the least problematic). I seem to just keep gravitating back to it.

      3. Ian says:

        To be fair, that really is a bad idea. That doesn’t defend the “LOL” and “RTFM”-esque responses (since they’re both tasteless and imply that such a thing is actually in the manual).

        Gentoo is essentially versionless, so unless you do some very heavy ebuild masking (not to mention praying that the older ebuilds don’t get obsoleted) your old stage3 is going to quickly become a new stage3 very quickly after doing an emerge or two. At best, you would have to find an old stage3 and an old portage snapshot, never EVER upgrade, and hope that they never clear the old files off of the mirrors.

        If you’re looking for a light-weight distro to use in a chroot jail, you might want to look into Debian.

    2. krellen says:

      When people say “I’m trying to do X on Vista”, my response is always “Stop using Vista; go back to XP or upgrade to 7”. I really hope I’m not part of the problem; I honestly think Vista is the problem in these equations.

      1. Heron says:

        As a person who hates “don’t do X, do Y instead” responses, I fully endorse your response in this case.

        1. Felblood says:

          It’s crucial to distinguish between questions like, “How do I replace the starter on my Subaru?” or “How much tow strap would I need to drag this concrete slab with my Ford?” and questions like, “How can I get my bicycle up to 88 m.p.h., with a filing cabinet attached?” or “How big of a ramp would I need to jump the Grand Canyon on my Banana Board?”

          There are some things that you simply cannot do under Windows Vista, and shouldn’t attempt even if you find a way. At a certain point a cyclist needs to accept that bikes are not the same thing as cars, and miniature skateboards are not airplanes. (Any time you are asking for advice, and a wrong answer is likely to result in a vehicular injury, don’t open a forum thread. Hire a professional, or consult someone you actually know.)

          1. BenD says:

            This sounds like the voice of experience, and I can’t help feeling like there are funny stories in there somewhere.

          2. Jarenth says:

            I’d like to point out here that if you’re convinced the problem in [whatever] case is Vista, clearly say this in your reply.

            Don’t ever say “Stop using Vista; move to XP or 7“, because yes, that *does* sound like you’re being a smartass. But phrasing it like “Your problem is that what you’re trying to do might very well be impossible under Windows Vista; you might want to consider moving to XP or 7 instead” feels a lot more like actual help.

            EDIT: As has been said a million times over just a bit down. But who has time to read all them replies, amirite?

      2. Kyte says:

        Vista can do pretty much everything 7 can (maybe with a bit less annoyance/hassle), so yes, you’re being part of the problem.
        Plus, I don’t know anyone willing to pay for/install another OS just to solve a single issue.

        1. potemkin.hr says:

          It can do even things windows 7 is uncapable of. Try playing Starcraft (yeah, the first one :) ) or Diablo 2 and you’ll see what I mean. On windows 7, there’s an 99,6% chance you’ll have artifacts, which NEVER occur if you have Vista installed, and this doesn’t happen just in StarCraft. Generally, I find Vista better suited for gaming, as several older games didn’t run od Windows 7, but ran fine on XP or Vista.

          1. Tse says:

            Have Windows 7, roommate has Windows Vista. Starcraft got artifacts on both, Diablo 2 got no artifacts on either system.

          2. Falcon_47 says:

            First of all, what do you mean by “Artifacts”? (I dare you to answer this with another question >_<) My windows 7 runs the first starcraft just fine…

          3. Vipermagi says:

            I am postponing Win7 just because of the hassle of D2. I still haven’t managed to get directdraw running fullscreen, while still allowing me to tab out. Luckily, I don’t use the Win7 machine much.

            @Falcon: Artefacts are minor graphical errors, like pixels that are green or purple where they shouldn’t be.

            Between the Arreat Plateau and the area after that, there’s a tree sprite with an artifact on one of the branches (left side, almost all the way at the top). Every time I walk by, I see that one green pixel, and it ticks me right off :p

            1. jdaubenb says:

              You might want to check out a glide wrapper. This is the one I used, when I still played Diablo 2: http://www.svenswrapper.de/english/index.html

              You might have to run the game in Windows XP compatibility mode and/or disable desktop composition under the compatibility options (depending on what operating system you run).

              1. Vipermagi says:

                The glidewrapper is (to my knowledge):
                1. D3D; not directdraw
                2. for solving lag; not graphical issues
                So, not quite what I need :)

                I’ve tried various compatability setups, and they all ended up with purple/green color schemes after tabbing out, unless I set the video mode to D3D/glide. The mod I play, Median XL, has a lot of dynamic lighting (color) effects, and it just doesn’t work for me. Directdraw doesn’t have dymanic lighting, which is why I want specifically that to work. Gah, new technology! :(

                1. utzelgrutzel says:

                  I have a yet untested .bat file lying around on my hdd that promises to fix 256 colour errors for AoE 2. It says:
                  taskkill /IM explorer.exe /F
                  cd "E:\Age Of Empires 2"
                  start empires2.exe
                  start explorer.exe

                  No idea if it’s the same problem, would work, was already tried, blows up your pc or when it works if it would help with alt+tab. But it should be easy to try.

                  I also seem to remember seeing these glitches in Age of Star Wars (No idea right now what it’s actual name, it is just Aoe 2 with SW units) when still using XP.

                2. Falling says:

                  Yeah, I’ve had this artifact/ colour glitch on Windows 7 for Starcraft BW, Diablo 1, and Age of Empires II. Occasionally it occurs on Vista, but most often on any Windows 7.

                  That .bat file definitely works. It stream lines the process you could also do manually, by closing explorer.exe through task manager and restarting explorer.exe again once you’ve finished playing the game. (Start new task: explorer.exe) Works fine.

                  Mine was:
                  taskkill /f /IM explorer.exe
                  C:”Starcraft 1.161″”StarCraft.exe”
                  start explorer.exe

                  Where the second line is wherever you have the actual game saved- I happen to have downloaded the no-cd patch from Blizzard.

                  Strangely, I’ve come across another ‘fix’ that doesn’t sound like it would work, but actually does. Open up and keep your screen resolution window open, then open up the game and the colours are fixed- However, you also need your desktop background to be black, no picture. No idea how or why this works, but it works for both Starcraft BW and Diablo

            2. potemkin.hr says:

              Pretty much same problem. In SC the artifacts are insanely annoying in the menus, in-game on the edges of FOW (Fog of War) and in water maps, the water’s completely messed up…looks like an BP oil spill :D
              (example: http://www.techspot.com/vb/post750272-1.html )

              This problem keeps occurring on all my 3 PCs (nVidia laptop with win7 x64, Intel GMA Desktop with win7 x86 and my dad’s Radeon laptop with win7 x64). I can’t imagine a wider test scope of hardware that boasts all 3 graphics chips manufacturers (Intel, nVidia, ATI), and on every single one this graphics problem occurs.
              Back when I had Windows Vista installed both SC and D2 worked flawlessly on the same hardware, so the new OS is to blame, as it is the only variable that changed (the hardware remained the same).

              1. guy says:

                I’ve seen that stuff happen on XP. I think it might be a disk degredation problem or something like that.

          4. Daemian Lucifer says:

            Really?I never had problems with my old version of starcraft.

            Vista is better than 7 in one respect though:It sucks more.

          5. Volatar says:

            Thats weird. Diablo II worked on my Windows 7 laptop without a hitch.

          6. Friend of Dragons says:

            Hm… Diablo 2 was almost utterly nonfunctional for me on vista (crashed whenever I left the rogue encampment) but ran perfectly fine when I upgraded to Win7.

          7. Warstrike says:

            I’m not at home, but you can set up a .bat to take care of the problem for Starcraft, at least. It just runs a single command and runs the executable. I found it by googling the problem, but I can try to post again tonight if you can’t find it.

        2. d34thly says:

          You pay for Operating Systems?

      3. Reach says:

        Just package a solution with your advice. You have to realize that the technical problem they are having with vista and the overarching problem of them using vista are two different problems. Just turn it into something contructive, “Well, this is how you would do that with Vista, but if you switched to windows 7 or XP things would be much easier,” As justified as your sentiment may be, if you aren’t offering a solution you [i]are[/i] making the same mistake as Dorkus McFanboy, Deflector of Questions.

      4. Ben says:

        I think you are part of the problem on this. I may be one of the few Vista defenders in existence but really Vista isn’t as bad as everyone makes it out to be. More to the point almost any problem you’ll have on vista you’ll be very likely to have on Windows 7. The root of most Vista based problems (especially with older software) are faulty assumptions about user privilege level which pretty much carry over into windows 7.

        Vista and Windows 7 are very similar operating systems, the primary reason Windows 7 was better received was because after 3 years software developers had started to break their bad habits of assuming the user would always have admin privileges.

        1. Felblood says:

          If the software were really the crux of the problem, upgrading to 7 would not cause programs that will not run under Vista to begin functioning normally. However, many, many (some of them otherwise unbeatable) problems can be solved by changing over to Windows 7.

          Maybe you haven’t run into many of these problems yourself, but there’s a reason you find yourself feeling alone, when defending Vista. My (fairly considerable, actually) research indicates, that the typical user experience is one of woe and weird compatability errors.

          You’re right about Vista and 7 being very similar, though. Vista was predicated on a lot of bad assumptions all on it’s own, and 7 is more of a desperately needed patch for those mistakes than an actual separate OS. It’s just different enough to work. The fact that MS charges money for this patch doesn’t make people need it less. (I can’t help hate on gamepad drivers, because I am still too busy hating on that one.)

          At least, the inquirer’s game purchase and hardware are still potentially usable, if they can afford a “new” OS.

          1. Bryan says:

            One of the problems Vista 64-bit had (at least when it was first released) is that it had no 16-bit support and very few drivers. This may not mean much to you, if you only run newer software, but a lot of pre-2000 software required the 16-bit compatability. I was trying to debug this for my brother, and found that every game that had an issue was an old game with 16-bit code. I put XP on his system and corrected compatability and the games in question ran fine. I don’t know if Windows ever replaced their 16-bit functionality in Vista or 7, but they do have better drivers now.

            1. Ian says:

              That’s not a problem with Vista or 7. The issue is that virtual 8086 mode is inaccessible from long mode. You would need to emulate a 16/32-bit environment (using something like DOSBox) or virtualize a 32-bit OS in order to use virtual 8086 mode.

              So, basically, it’s an issue of processor support more than anything else. NTVDM requires VM86 to function. Sure, Microsoft could throw in an emulator for 16-bit applications, but that strikes me as a waste of development and testing time, really. Microsoft had to add in hundreds of shims to support crappy 32/64-bit applications, I’d rather not have more kludges thrown in to get all of the poorly-behaved 16-bit applications in as well. Plus, you do have access to XP Mode in Windows 7 Professional, which takes the virtualization route, so people who absolutely need 16-bit applications can still use them.

              1. Bryan says:

                Too bad windows 7 was not available yet.

                1. Ian says:

                  Virtualization was still a feasible option in Vista x64. The only catch was that you had to have an XP product key to use it (which could wind up being a deal-breaker depending on how any copies of XP that you have are licensed, I’ll admit). “XP Mode” is nothing more than a pre-activated copy of Windows XP SP3 running in Virtual PC in a Unity- or Coherence-like mode.

        2. Swedmarine says:

          Yay! It feels good to find another Vista defender. High five!

      5. X2-Eliah says:

        Well, your response is pretty much completely useless and unhelpful, with a smack of elitism (even if unintended, it comes across that way).. So yeah, you are part of the problem – especially since this one is pretty much the same as “Stop using a PS3, go back to XBox or use a PC” – despite what your own opinion on it is, it is NOT helping to the one who needs to solve the problem on Vista.

        Yes, embedding proper advice in there would help, though I would recommend not pushing your opinion on to people if they are not asking for it (I.E. “Should I buy Vista?”) – fact is, they have Vista, they paid for it, and they need to solve an issue with it.

        1. krellen says:

          Most of the time, they didn’t actually “pay” for Vista. Microsoft was actively subsidising Vista installations – you would get a significant discount on the price of your computer if you got it with Vista instead of XP.

          1. Sydney says:

            Let’s focus on the least important part of the response and ignore the rest.

        2. krellen says:

          How much of this opinion changes if they are, in fact, specifically asking me the question (how do I get X to work on Y), rather than the internet at large?

          1. Sydney says:

            None of it.

            They asked how to get it to work in Vista. Changing the topic to “What’s the best Windows OS” is i) unhelpful and ii) snobbish.

            1. krellen says:

              Try having most of your major relationships – including the one with your parents – based off tech support and see if you still feel that I’m being unhelpful and snobbish.

              1. BenD says:

                Giving your parents this answer qualifies as giving your folks a hard time. The same goes for your brother, your buddy, and maybe even your coworker (if you aren’t professionally obliged to offer him/her professional tech support as a part of your relationship). So when you tell your folks ‘don’t use Vista’ I think you get a pass, especially if you’re willing to help them anyway, and especially if they are amused.

                In a professional capacity, it is not a helpful answer. In an internet forum it is liable to actively prevent the asker from receiving helpful answers, which is even worse. So in those cases, I would not give you (or anyone) the same pass.

                Also, the real answer is ‘Use a Mac.’ Duh!

                1. Daemian Lucifer says:

                  This all depends on how krellen gave the answer.The mere “use 7” answer is a dumb one.However,if the answer is “go with 7 because that problem is hard/impossible to fix on vista,plus 7 does x,y and z better”,then its ok.

        3. Felblood says:

          To be blunt, I had Vista, back before I knew better.

          While irritating at the time, I’m glad I took that advice.

          The real problem is the inevitable threadjack, when the Vista (and/or PC) apologists come out to defend the OS, rather than provide actual advice the user of the platform they claim to be knowledgeable about.

          Flame wars are of absolutely no use to anyone, and utterly fail to provide even an expensive solution to the problem presented.

          1. BenD says:

            Exactly. It’s not even the character of the answer. It’s that it’s threadjacking and actively prevents the asker from getting any help.

      6. Jeysie says:

        *looks at thread* Well, er, I think my answer is mostly superfluous at this point. But for what it’s worth:

        Like I tried to say, there are rare occasions when “Use z instead” actually might be useful, when it really is just so much easier to do x on z rather than y, and z is also close enough to x that it won’t be a big deal to change over. Although I’d go with what Reach said in that instance: Cover both bases by giving advice for x and the recommendation for z. (Although although Felblood did make a good point about the possibility of threadjack, in those scenarios where that can happen.)

        My problem is more when the answer is more a “LOL ur still using that? That’s suxx0rs, upgrade ur thing n00b” where the person could give you perfectly good advice on what you want to use, they’d just rather shill their pet thing instead. Which too often it is that sort of answer.

    3. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Sup dawg,I heard you like to do x on y,so we swapped your y with z and now you can cry in agony.

    4. Svick says:

      That’s why I like Stack Overflow-like Q&A sites. If you get an answer like that, you can vote it down into oblivion. Stack Overflow is about programming, but the are others for different areas. I really hope such sites take over fora in this regard.

      1. Tizzy says:

        YES! There are a lot of SomethingOverflow, and they’re gaining in popularity because the quality of answers is so much higher.

  6. Matt K says:

    I know this is going to sound like an obviously unhelpful comment, but I have a wired XBox 360 controller and I play DR2 on Steam just fine. I know that’s the equivalent of saying, “Go out and buy a new controller,” but it sounds like the only difference between your setup and mine is the wireless aspect. Maybe that’s the problem.

    You could find someone with an XBox 360 and ask to borrow their wired controller, just to test. It doesn’t have to be a special PC-XBox controller; any one will do.

    I hope that came across as helpful.

    1. HeroOfHyla says:

      That is, in fact, the problem. The Dead Rising team had to include 360 controller support under Games for Windows rules, but somehow they only decided to support the wired version.

      1. ccesarano says:

        If this really is the solution, then honestly my bigger question is why are wired and wireless treated so differently? I’m not Captain Coder so maybe I’m not familiar enough with some of the nuances, but it doesn’t seem like one should make any more of a difference than the other.

        1. GardenNinja says:

          They shouldn’t be. Any programmer worth the name would separate out the common things (e.g. sending input to the PC) from the specifics (e.g. the transfer mechanism for that input). It is possible, I suppose, that there is some good reason for the difference, but I can’t see it, especially when the result is so user hostile. I can only surmise that the Wireless and Wired Controllers were made by separate teams that didn’t speak to each other.

          1. ccesarano says:

            Actually, it seems even more curious to me. Dead Rising 2 was already built for the Xbox 360, which uses both wired and wireless controllers. Knowing how Microsoft’s been developing their console, the framework/code for handling the controls should be the same on either Xbox or PC in that regard. At least, that would make sense. A console is overall just a PC with a limited OS, so…

            Y’know what? Screw it. I’ve never dealt with this level of programming, but clearly there’s something different between the Xbox and PC that the PC needs specific code in order to read a wireless 360 controller.

            Which is dumb.

            1. GardenNinja says:

              Y'know what? Screw it. I've never dealt with this level of programming, but clearly there's something different between the Xbox and PC that the PC needs specific code in order to read a wireless 360 controller.

              Which is dumb.

              I don’t have a problem with the existence of code to handle the difference between PCs and the 360, and between Wireless and Wired. There could be any number of design decisions/constraints that warrant the difference. However, that distinction is an implementation detail and I can’t think of a reason for it to be exposed to the programmer working on a game that uses it, let alone the end user.

              1. guy says:

                The most obvious explanation is that the wireless controller actually sends inputs in a different format but the 360 handles the conversion, and the PC doesn’t because lacking automatic controller support is not something that gets PCs recalled and people fired. Now, any libraries worth the bytes they’re printed on would handle the conversion internally, but maybe someone was an idiot.

    2. Blockenstein says:

      I did my own searching for DR2’s lackluster controller support a while ago. I have a wired MadCatz 360 controller that also works fine for Live and a variety of other games. It seems that you need an official MS wired 360 controller or DR2 won’t recognize it at all. I haven’t tested this, though, so YMMV…

    3. Ralph says:

      Try a wireless controller without the battery pack connected via one of those USB charging cables, may work.

      1. Irridium says:

        No, doesn’t work. I should know, I tried it multiple times. A wireless controller needs the wireless adapter. No exceptions.

        Because otherwise it would be too convenient for the customer.

        1. Will says:

          According to the internets it sometimes works if you have one of the wireless controllers forged in the depths of magical jungle by mountain elves and the stars align perfectly with the moon; summoning G’blygub from the depths to provide the requisite dark energy to make the connection.

  7. And all of this stems from publishers being unwilling to make real ports for PC gamers. If they would just fix that problem your controller issues wouldn’t even matter.

    What I’ve always wondered, though, is exactly -why- those people feel the need to tell you to buy your game on another system. Imagine that response in any other area.

    “Hey guys, okay so my Toyota Prius is acting up a bit, I think the problem is with the starter but I’m not sure how to figure that out, any help?”

    “why u buy Toyota, just buy a Ford F-250, works great”

    1. Raygereio says:

      What I've always wondered, though, is exactly -why- those people feel the need to tell you to buy your game on another system.

      Oh, that’s simple. See, if you tell yourself something stupid just often enough, eventually you will start to believe it. However, this state is very fragile and the merest introduction of sanity can shatter it, causing violent and insane responses.
      These individuals have deluded themselves into thinking that a console is a worthwhile investment and not the equivalent of smearing excrement onto money. When they then come into contact something as rational as playing a game on the superior system that is the PC, they cannot help but strike out and attempt to drown that bright star of wisdom with inane comments.

      This form is insanity is easily recognized by usage of broken English by these poor fools. You see, this insanity is virulent enough that it can easily spread out across the brain and damage parts other then the logic processor, such as the language centres.

      This post is brought to you by someone who would like to state that unlike what’s indicated in said post; he’s actually aware of one or two legitimate reasons for buying a console.

      The alternative explanation is that the anonymity of the Internet allows even the most testicle-deprived individual to make an ass out of himself. Take your pick.

      1. There should be a screening process to get onto the internet. Something like “someone is a fan of a different console than the one you own, what is your reaction?”

        I appreciate your lesson, it’s good to know these people are suffering from a horrible disease and aren’t simply, you know, ignorant assholes.

        My “Faith in Humanity” meter couldn’t be any further in the negative.

      2. Dovius says:

        Actually I think that a console can be a worthwile investment, if you prefer knowing that you will always be able to play the titles you buy for it without any DRM or lacking personal specs to get in the way of it.
        On the other hand, I fully admit that the pc can easily be a superior system with up-to-date hardware, and I appear to be a console fan fully capable of speaking regular english.

        1. Raygereio says:

          I don’t know if you meant to do this, but please allow me to nip a potential system wars in the butt by stating that my previous post was a joke (if that wasn’t obvious).
          Each gaming platform has its own merits and flaws; and each system contains a beautiful person underneath the skin who's just dying to get to know you, not matter what shitty accessories come with it and no matter the crowd of annoying shitheads that system hangs out with.

          Yes, even the Virtual Boy contains a beautiful flower; you can find it, if you're just willing to rach into that steaming pile of shit. Not the Action Max though; that ugly thing deserved to be strangled at birth.

          1. Dovius says:

            Easy, mine was mostly joking too, and believe me, I’m the last person who wants a system wars here.
            Because I just don’t get why all those rabid fanboys can’t get the simple explanation you bring up.

            1. Raygereio says:

              Ah, the eternal curse of the internet forums and the like; not being able to tell when someone is joking or not.

              1. dovius says:

                could always try it Elcor style.
                Sarcastic reply: Well I think it’s REALLY easy to get jokes online.

        2. Ragnar says:

          Console games include DRM too. That particular curse isn’t for PC:s only. And you can get banned from playing your own console game too.


      3. El Quia says:

        These individuals have deluded themselves into thinking that a console is a worthwhile investment and not the equivalent of smearing excrement onto money”

        It’s not that bad then: you can always wash the money to clean away the crap :p

    2. psivamp says:

      Absurd! The problem would have to be with the Ford and the reliable option be the Toyota! I jest. Ford’s cleaned up their act in past years, and Toyota has fallen in reliability ratings.

      You are correct in your analysis of the silliness of the whole thing though. Your bicycle shifter sticks and you’re having a hard time adjusting the tension to the derailleur? You should get a moped, it has a clutch and you don’t have to worry about that at all.

      1. ccesarano says:

        Subaru or Volkswagen, clearly.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          Bah,just buy the damn mercedes and youll have no problem.Or,if you dont have enough cash for a good mercedes,go with bmw.

    3. Peter H. Coffin says:

      The answer they have is the one that they have, and they’re going to trot it out and show it to you so that they can participate. It doesn’t matter to them that it’s inapplicable and therefore irrelevant.

      1. Jarenth says:

        It’s kind of amazing that you just summed up the whole raison d’àªtre for these kinds of replies in only two sentences.

  8. Rallion says:

    I hate having to decide what system to get a game for. I have all three consoles and a gaming PC, so I generally have a lot of choice. Usually, I prefer to buy games for PC, but things like this frequently factor in to the decision. It doesn’t help that it often seems difficult to find any reliable information about the quality of the PC port, especially if you want to buy a game right when it comes out. Reviews don’t usually mention things like this, and the uncertainty turns a PC purchase into a gamble. It sometimes feels like I’m just trying to decide on the “least-bad” option, and that’s a ridiculous feeling to have when buying entertainment.

    1. Deadpool says:

      Sadly, the decision is much simpler nowadays. If the game is less than 5 years old, all you have to ask yourself is “is this an RTS, MMO or made by Valve?” If yes, get the PC version. If not, get the console version.

      And at the rate we’re going, the MMO might be going for the console…

      1. AndyL says:

        I’d broaden that to any pure strategy game, not just real-time ones.

        If they ever go crazy and make a Civ5 for PS3 you wouldn’t want it.

    2. Heron says:

      I’ve started to ignore PC ports unless I’m sure the control scheme isn’t broken (Dead Space, I’m looking at you). Of course, my only console is a PS3 running pre-killing-OtherOS firmware, so new games are out of the question there.

      1. Someone says:

        I’ve found that I can adopt to pretty much anything control-wise. I’ve finished DMC 4 on a keyboard. Heck, I’ve even enjoyed it. Occasionally.

        1. Heron says:

          It’s not the poor control layout that makes Dead Space so bad, it’s that the mouse is abysmally unsensitive, and I couldn’t make it any better. Trying to look around felt like I was turning through molasses. I’m glad I waited until it was on sale, or I’d have been *really* disgruntled.

          1. Stellar Duck says:

            For what it’s worth I seem to remember the mouse issue in Dead Space would go away if you disable V-sync.

            I might be misremembering though.

  9. Andy_Panthro says:

    There are indeed a lot of unhelpful people on the internet. Seems that common courtesy is forgotten about.

    And that’s not even including deliberate trolling.

  10. Hitch says:

    What I hate is when I’m having a problem and search on the internet for an answer.

    The first link I find has someone on a forum describing the exact problem I have.

    The first response is someone offering as a solution the first thing I tried, which didn’t work.

    The next post is someone else, pointing out that this doesn’t actually work.

    Then a moderator comes along and posts, “Question answered, locking thread.”

    Then the next 20 hits I get all contain links back to that same completely useless thread.

    1. Tengokujin says:

      THIS. This is what I hate. This keeps happening to me.
      What’s worse is when the person who asked the question then goes to a different forum so they can get an answer, and that gets locked.
      And then they go to another and that…
      I think you see the problem.
      All those forums answering the same question in nearly the same way before being locked into uselessness, and all of them coming up on google.

      1. Raygereio says:

        Oh Ao, yes. I sometimes feel that Google seriously needs some sort of rating system or a simple “Was this link helpfull? yes/no” button just to weed out the useless links that somehow always manage to appear on the first page of any google search.

        But then I realise that people on the Internet will be able to use that rating system and I realise it will be utterly useless.

        1. Mari says:

          So true.

          *yes, a pointless “QFT” but if Shamus would just install a “Like” button I wouldn’t have to do that* :-P

    2. Tse says:

      And sometimes the first 20 pages are not related to your problem.

      Other times the problem is unsolvable. For example, there is no way to change the interface language for GFWL. It sees the regional settings, sees I’m from Eastern Europe, I speak a slavic language and it sets itself to GERMAN!!! A language I don’t even speak.

      1. Pickly says:

        *Random internet guy mode on* Dude, German is easy. Just google it. *Random internet guy mode off*

        (Unfortunately I don’t have anything actually productive to say, either about the language issue, or about internet help.)

      2. Felblood says:

        Have you tried setting your OS’s region to a country where they speak a language you understand?

        I used to set my Windows 7 to JP for imported games with non-unicode characters.

        I don’t know how GFWL works in that regard(I eschew plague horses myself) so it’s a bit of a long shot.

        1. Tse says:

          It’s set to my country, I need it to be set like that for the local programs I use.

          1. Felblood says:

            I usually ended up switching it around, depending on what I was attempting to run at the moment, but I realize that not everyone’s system even functions under alternate region settings.

      3. Jarenth says:

        Let me see if I can do this. Er-hum:

        why u play in east europ just move to usa works great

    3. pkt-zer0 says:

      I don’t think that’s as bad as having a thread where the first two posts are a guy saying “this is my problem” and “nvm, solved it”, and the rest are asking what the actual solution was.

      1. DaveMc says:

        To make myself feel better, I try to force myself to believe that all the “solved it” people are lying, always. Otherwise it drives me too crazy — you solved it HOW? Why would you SAY that and provide no details? What are you, an anonymous poster on an interum foru– oh, wait.

        1. Jarenth says:

          I just take these kinds of threads as proof that the Internet itself is both sentient and hateful.

      2. El Quia says:

        Yes! YES! YEES!!!!!! I hate that. IF you had solved it, then why the f*** don’t you share it with the rest of the forum, useless piece of s***! I am sure that if you are posting in this forum then you had already benefited by the solution others shared, why don’t you? ARGH!!

        And a variant of it is someone answering “I know how to solve this, I will PM/mail/whatever the solution” and the OP answers “thx, it worked. Close this thread” ¬¬

        Hate it, let me tell you, HATE IT!! D:<

    4. Rob Maguire says:

      Another good one are threads that are unlocked, years old, and at the top of the Google search results. There’s a post from 2007 with a bunch of non-answers following it before the thread dies out, then a post from 2008 (and 2009, and 2010) that consists of “I have this problem too, has anyone ever found a fix?”, immediately responded to with a cacophony of “Stop thread-necroing”. And since Google only shows the date of the last post, you’re fooled into thinking this thread is still relevant.

      What’s even better is when the actual answer is in one of the threads under ‘More results from whatever.com’ beneath the main search result. Google needs a way to vote on relevant search results. (Edit: ninja’d. I shouldn’t spend thirty minutes writing and re-writing my posts without refreshing!)

    5. Someone says:

      I found out that whenever I have a problem, there is some other, “mainstream” version of that problem which everybody else on the Internet seems to have. Similar in almost everything except for a few small yet crucial details, like a different section of the memory described in the bsod “Stop” message.

      So, whenever I google up a problem I find page after page of solutions for its “mainstream” cousin, which, of course, don’t help me solve my problem, but which I try anyway, out of desperation, wasting hour after hour of my time.

      1. Pickly says:

        Seems to happen to me a lot as well.

        Perhaps this is one of those situations where either the actual solved problems aren’t remembered, or a lot of people just have problems that seem more unusual.

      2. Mari says:

        I’ve been having that with Silverlight. Everyone acknowledges that the software is junk and everyone has problems with it but nobody has MY problem with it. I’ve spent days at a time wading through tech forums and trying even unrelated fixes. In the end I decided that I don’t need to watch Netflix “Watch Instantly” THAT badly and if I’m so desperate that I absolutely have to watch something on it I’m resigned to rebooting my computer every 15-30 minutes.

    6. Sem says:

      On the internet, this is a general problem. There is a website for programming questions that is specifically made to solve this : Stackoverflow.

      All members of the site can vote on the answers of a question. Answers are sorted by number of votes, so the best answers are always the first ones you read (and not, as on a lot of forums, somewhere at the end in the last 30 pages of the thread. Happy searching.). Bad/Wrong/Useless answers are downvoted very quickly or deleted altogether so there is a very high signal/noise ratio. So high in fact, that for programming questions I first go to stackoverflow and then to google (except for the simple ones or if I need a full-blown tutorial i.e. what is cte in sql server ?).

      Most programmers here will know stackoverflow but maybe less known is that the concept proved so popular it spawned a lot of daughter sites. One is aimed at games : Gaming stackexchange.

    7. Mina says:

      What drives me crazy is when I use the search function, find a thread where someone had my same problem, and the only replies in it are “USE THE SEARCH FUNCTION!!”

      1. El Quia says:

        Oh, yes that one is great :P

        I tend to get that more in random forums that in StackOverflow, though. And I love how, while it’s true most of the time, sometimes the results are either obsolete or completely useless. But of course, you can’t make that guy understand that. Because, you know, he searched for that and found at least 15 threads about that topic. It’s a shame that he didn’t bothered to check if they are relevant or not ¬¬

  11. Jack V. says:

    You know, I love a lot of the things you write deliberately to be funny, but I really, really like your rants :)

    1. some random dood says:

      Hate leads to anger.
      Anger leads to rage.
      Rage leads to ranting.
      Ranting leads to catharsis (and a very fine article)…

      Wait what? I don’t think I memorised my lessons properly at jedi school…???

  12. Dante says:

    “bend Yeoman Chambers over the galaxy map for a Renegade Interrupt”

    At least two people are currently drawing this, and at least six are writing fan fiction based on those words alone.

    1. X2-Eliah says:

      And you know one of them is Rutskarn with the intent to troll the hell out of Mumbles.

    2. Mari says:

      Which I will be posting later tonight to Literotica in the sci-fi fantasy section. :-D

      1. some random dood says:

        Mari, have mercy! Please don’t!!! The internet was never meant for such… Oh I just read your post below. It *was* meant for such things. Le sigh.

    3. Someone says:

      …and 5 of those people didn’t even read the post, they were just doing it for kicks.

  13. Mari says:

    You would solve this problem with one simple realization, Shamus. The internet is for pr0n. All that other stuff it does? That’s unsupported and potentially will be identified any day now as a bug.

    But seriously, yes, I share your hatred of that guy. I could tell you his name but it wouldn’t matter because he has a million aliases. Sometimes he even uses two, simultaneously, to argue with himself on the internet. One time I saw him troll himself because he was bored. Apparently Xbox Live was down at the time so he had nobody else to call “faggit.”

  14. Reach says:

    The best is when you try to find a solution to your problem and the first solutions that show up on Google are all for outdated versions of the software you are using, causing the interface and by extension the solution to be completely different. Of course, this won’t stop mods and forum elites from citing this solution and berating someone for not using the search button.

  15. How about using Joy to Key?
    It’s a nice little application that you can use to interpret joystick/gamepad key presses as keyboard input. So as long as Joy-To-Key can see your gamepad, and your game can accept keyboard input, you’re in business.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      How does it translate the analogue movement of sticks though?There are games where a little push is walk,and big push is run.

      1. Unnamed Protagonist says:

        not sure, really. But if you can play it with a keyboard, you can play it with a gamepad, provided you have enough buttons.

      2. Tomulus says:

        The documentation doesn’t say. Maybe pulse width modulation?

  16. Patrick The Malcontent says:

    I spend most of time hating people who do this. And most of those who do not as well. I used to view my thinly veiled contempt for most online communities as a socially relevant and helpful tool, in that occasionally I would guide a walking organ donor into being something more than a case for 43rd trimester abortions. But then I realised that having my contempt thinly veiled was counterproductive, and have since openly wielded my disgust for most of you in much the same way Charlie Sheen carries his elegant bucket of nonsense. It’s mostly self-serving, but occasionally entertaining and/or educational.

    I quote HK-47:
    ” It is my primary function to burn holes through meatbags that you wish removed from the galaxy…” HK-47, to the Jedi Exile, on his functionality

  17. ccesarano says:

    Y’know, for some reason “Because I need to game on a more private platform” has never crossed my mind, even though it is so obvious. The biggest reason my Nintendo Wii gets so little love isn’t because of the “lack of ‘hardcore’ games” or any other such nonsense. It’s because I have my Wii hooked up to the family TV, and it is rare when they’re all so busy and I can just sit down and play a game, particularly one that’s okay in front of my five year old niece.

    (Kind of jumping back to the previous entry: I found a great sense of irony when my sister walked in with my niece one day while I was playing Metroid: Other M and she said “There you go, Angelina, a real female role model”. Oh, if only she knew)

    Most modern AAA M-Rated games are on the Xbox 360, which I have in my room. Privacy and such are no problem, and I’ve grown up looking at the PC as a working machine more than a gaming machine and therefore when I want to game I think “What do I want to play on my Xbox?” This wasn’t even much trouble in College since my roommates were more PC gamers that just used their computers more than the TV. Plus, none of us minded watching someone game (in fact, they sort of used my Left 4 Dead time to make fun of me).

    So the above situations, where people either have their games in their personal room or have roommates that like games, gives them a different perspective than someone with a family, not all of whom may be interested in games (and if they are, not quite the same ones).

    Which I think is the real cause to this problem. People are unable to see outside of their own world view. They are horses with blinders on. Try and get them to see more than what’s in front of them and you’ll fail.

    1. This is actually the reason we own 2 Wii’s and 2 PS2’s (and someday may add an extra XBox 360). The living room tv and laptop are for the kids and have all their stuff hoooked up while the office computers are for the grownups. The kids can use Shamus’ computer when he is sleeping but only the games they are allowed near (they usually play Garry’s Mod whicih I find hilarious. :))

      1. ccesarano says:

        Every once in a while my niece wants to use my Xbox 360, but there’s only two real reasons. 1) Castle Crashers, and 2) Mega Man (which seems to be gone, apparently).

        It makes things troublesome when I really don’t want to babysit her through this stuff, especially when she needs help in Castle Crashers. I’ve been trying to figure out a good way to teach her gaming, but the way I wound up learning around 5 was by playing the first level of a game, and then put a new game in. It took a few years before I started to actually play World 2 in Super Mario Bros.

  18. Gahazakul says:

    I know your rant answer is for a certain person but I take mild offense that your statement is saying that if you use a console for mature titles that you are playing them at any time of the day. I use the console to play a lot of mature titles…after my kids go to bed, or when I am free during the day when they are at school. When they are at home its all Kinectimals and Netflix. If that is really how you feel that’s just silly.

    1. Keep in mind– we all are home all day. We homeschool and work from home– so in our household there is no time when the kids aren’t using the tv unless Shamus is asleep during their awake time– and they just as often sleep in the living room. (Yes, we are those parents.)

      1. Irridium says:

        I’ve always wanted to sleep in the living room. But my parents never let me :(

  19. Chris H. says:

    If it’s any consolation, it’s not just in this sort of forum you get this. Sometimes it is actually people you know!

    Just the beginning of last week I put a query on my twitter and FB feed asking: if I were to buy an ebook reader, which would you recommend? (There are logical reasons, mainly involving an award I’m judging, why I was asking.)

    Of the seven or eight responses I got, fully five of them were people essentially telling me off for even asking the question. And these are people I actually know and, most of the time anyway, like…!

    1. some random dood says:

      You may have more luck with answers here (although it may help to give some more information – do you mean discrete dedicated hardware e-book readers, or software for your existing hardware [if so, which?], or what others like using on their phone/tablet/netbook/laptop…)

    2. Antwon says:

      [nods] Yep, I’ve seen this in action, too. Heck, I wasn’t even asking for help, just blowing off steam about some tech issue at work that I couldn’t resolve… and in come some folks babbling in a smug fashion about how easy and obvious the fix is – y’know, the one I tried that emphatically didn’t work. Thanks so much for the patronizing non-help, guys! Guh.

  20. Amarsir says:

    An oversimplified description of the Socratic method of teaching would be “answering by asking questions.” Anyone providing technical assistance invariably finds themselves asking clarifying questions. And I doubt there was ever a question asked in a psychiatric counseling session that wasn’t redirected back at the patient.

    Obnoxious behavior is obnoxious, but I don’t think you do the world a favor by broadly saying you shouldn’t answer questions with questions.

    1. Felblood says:

      Yes, but this isn’t Socratic Teaching, where students are encouraged to reach the correct conclusions through their own logic.

      It’s Socratic Debate, where the statement is phrased as a question to make it difficult to argue against.

      It belies the true purpose of the post: to stoke the poster’s fragile ego, rather than aid the OP.

  21. GU1LD3NST3RN says:

    I love this blog. I really do. But every time I read one of these rants I’m reminded that Shamus hates me because I own an xbox 360.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Shamus owns one as well.You should know that there is a difference between owning an xbox and being a dick about owning an xbox.

      1. Irridium says:

        Something most of the internet really needs to learn.

    2. Shamus says:

      I have an Xbox 360, a Wii, and a PS2. (Not PS3, sadly.)

      1. Daemian Lucifer says:

        “(Not PS3, sadly.)”

        Well theres your problem.This is why you cannot move in those games.

      2. Irridium says:

        So you haven’t experienced LittleBigPlanet?


        1. Shamus says:

          Played it on a friend’s machine. Yes, fun indeed.

          1. Irridium says:

            Oh. Well all is well then.

    3. Antwon says:

      I’ve been a reader here for long enough that intellectually, I know that Shamus isn’t actually wishing ill upon me for the mere possession of a console. That’d make no logical sense. That said, if I didn’t have that background to go on, and I were considering the rant as a standalone piece? Yeah, “all console owners are mouth-breathers with IQs in the drinks-paint-regularly territory!” would have been the takeaway message.

      1. Veloxyll says:

        Well it is kinda true :P

        1. Antwon says:

          Eh, I’ve found them to be in about the same class as any other type of gamer: a vocal minority of total prats, a relatively thin sliver of awesome super-cool folks, and the bulk of ’em quietly inspiring grand indifference. I almost never play online with randoms, instead opting to play with friends I’ve made through various outside channels; I’m aware the whole “hErP DeRp yUO = TEH FAGOT” contingent exists, but I’m almost never personally exposed to them.

      2. GU1LD3NST3RN says:

        Actually, I realized that I actually kinda undermined my point with my initial comment. What I was attempting to do (and failed at) was to point out how ridiculously polarized the gaming spheres are. Everything need not be a “my console (or PC) is better than your console (or PC)” argument. It makes us all look petty and narrow-minded. I play on a variety of gaming devices based on my current needs/wants, and I tend to get frustrated whenever I perceive something that seems to suggest the whole “derp, console gamers are idiots, herp derp” viewpoint.

        Obviously that was not your intent, Shamus, and I apologize if I suggested otherwise.

        1. ccesarano says:

          I’ve found that my own knee-jerk reactions are more a result of being around PC gamers that cry about how consoles suck every second they can. Before then I grew up primarily playing on consoles and every once in a while playing a PC game on my brother’s computer like Master of Orion 2 or MechWarrior 2 (or Final Fantasy 5. Oh, the early days of ZSNES and emulation…). When my old man and I got a new computer I spent money upgrading it JUST so I could play Aliens vs. Predator 2 (and later Planetside).

          I never looked down at the PC as a gaming machine, but it just wasn’t for me. When I went to College and heard phrases like “consoletard” and crap thrown around and the misconception that console games were so simple and nothing could ever be better than a PC game, well, it just pissed me off.

          I’m more curious why PC gamers had to be so elitist to begin with, as the number of rational ones I’ve encountered have been few and far between. Ultimately, I think it’s more to do with a lot of PC gamers also being very knowledgable of computers in general, and for some reason such knowledge carries an air of pretentiousness for a lot of these folks. The PC Gaming elitism is just another symptom.

          1. Bryan says:

            Begin ludicrous joking rant.

            Console, PC, who cares? Do you think we went without games back when office-building sized computers were made from vacuum tubes and put out enough heat to make Alaska feel like a perpetual sauna?

            End ludicrous joking rant.

            Seriouasly though, consoles are dedicated (for the most part) gaming PC’s which limit form factors to ensure compatibility between games which use that form factor. Problems arise when the game is ported to a different form factor, be it another console or a PC, usually because the other form factor is not understood as well.

            Still, you’d think the publishers would WANT to make their product work on the other form factor just as easily, so the customer might buy another game from them in the future…

            Unless they WANT the exclusivity nightmare scenario…

            1. ccesarano says:

              Well, I know Microsoft and Sony certainly want that exclusivity nightmare scenario so they can hold something above the other’s head. Right now, though, Sony is doing better since their first party games are, well, actually wide and varied. They have their Wii Sports rip-off, but we’re also getting Little Big Planet 2, inFamous 2, another Killzone (love it or hate it), more Uncharted (love it or hate it), they got Heavy Rain and 3D Dot Game Heroes, etc.

              Last year Microsoft had Alan Wake, Fable 3 and Halo: Reach, and this year they have Gears of War 3. They canceled the new Kameo and a Perfect Dark sequel/spin-off/something so Rare could instead focus on Wii Sports imitations.

              I understand we need more than just “the hardcore”, but there are tons of PS3 exclusives I left off the above list and yet I can’t think of any first party Microsoft exclusives I left out. It’s pretty damn tragic.

              On another note: one could also argue that consoles are harder to pirate on in terms of reasons not to make a good port, but that would ignore the similar effect used game sales are having on consoles. In either case, the games industry seems to have no clue what to do with itself.

  22. Blake says:

    It’s not surprising that Games For Windows Live picks up the controller when the game doesn’t, Games For Windows Live just requires a couple of API calls to initialise then one call anywhere in the render loop and DirectX handles the rest. Just means the developers didn’t add controller support for the game.

  23. Mari says:

    Shamus, what ever you did that brought the literalist, oversensitive pseudo-trolls back around, please stop. I can’t help but wonder if you included this URL with your generous canned rage response on a forum somewhere? ;-)

    1. HAHaHAHHAHAHAHHHAH! That is all.

  24. Nihil says:

    I’ve never used a controller in my life except when occasionally Mario Something-ing in split-screen at friends’ houses; would you accept a contribution in the form of blazing venomous hatred for PC ports that feature a menu and a scroll-bar but somehow fail to grasp the arcane and mystical connection such elements are supposed to have with the Esc key and the mouse scroll-wheel?

  25. Irridium says:

    I know this all too well. Sometimes I like playing my PC games with a controller. Just because I like seeing how it’ll play with a controller rather than a keyboard/mouse.

    Its just baffling when obvious console-centric games, like Mass Effect 2 and Bad Company 2, don’t support the 360 controller. Or if they do, I found no way to enable them. Bad Company 2 had an “enable joystick” button, but that didn’t do anything.

    Pretty ridiculous.

  26. Specktre says:

    why u play on pc just use xbox version works great

  27. RedRedKrovy says:

    I had the exact opposite problem. I wanted to use my xbox controller with Counter Strike and got called everything but a white boy for suggesting it. The sad part is I didn’t imply that the controller was any better than a mouse and keyboard I just ask how to do it in the steam forums and got ridiculed for it.

    1. Irridium says:

      I tried the same thing once. Only I didn’t ask because I knew all I would get was ridicule…

      You can actually use it though, its just that in comparison to console FPS games, looking/moving is swapped. So you’d move with the right stick and look with the left.

      1. Tizzy says:

        If you cannot swap what you do with left and right, it’s really poor ergonomics and user-friendliness. :(

        If only for the sake of left vs right-handedness…

  28. cody says:

    I often have similar experiences looking for tech support, but slightly different. It starts the same way; digging through page after page of google results to finally find one thread discussing your exact problem and then witnessing this exchange:

    Person A: “Why does the game crash whenever I do x?”

    Person B: “Never had that problem, I can’t help you, sorry.”

    Person C: “Seems like you’re the only person encountering this and I can’t figure it out.”

    Person D: “No idea, sucks to be you.”

    Person A: “Nevermind, I figured it out.”


    1. Felblood says:

      I have been there.

      Shamus’ (and my) beloved System Shock 2 is a major source of these threads.

      I try not to get bent out of shape over it, since I distinctly remember doing that a couple of times, before I ended up on the other side of it.

    2. Hitch says:

      I’ve encountered that a lot and figured out why it happens.

      After much frustration with that sort of thing, I’ve posted a “How do you do x on y?” sort of question when I couldn’t find any good threads on the subject. Only to get several pages of “Just use (very expensive) z instead” and “you can’t do that.” When what I have should, by all rights, work.

      So a day or two later, when I finally work it out by myself, I decide to do the world a favor by going back and posting a detailed explanation of how I got it to work.

      Only to get a couple more pages of, “Well, duh! Everybody knows that.”

  29. Veylon says:

    I think it might be worth putting a plug in here for XPadder.

    If there’s anyone here who doesn’t know about it, it’s used to convert the input from the pad into keystrokes and allow a gamepad to be used for games that don’t support one or don’t support one the way you want.

  30. Airsoftslayer93 says:

    I hate this. i was perfectly content to play the majority of my games on Xbox and leave my pc for strategy games,, but the more i associate with pc gamers the more they lure me forward with offers of higher graphical fidelity and a more mature community.

    1. ccesarano says:

      and a more mature community

      Sir, I do believe you have made me lawl.

  31. Erik says:

    I personally find it more annoying when i find a post describing the exact same problem i’m having, with a follow up saying “nevermind, i fixed it”.

    What.. mind sharing your sollution with the rest of the world?

  32. guy says:

    Why do people use both Steam and GFWL for things bought in stores?


  33. Zak McKracken says:

    I think this ties in nicely with last week’s “PC vs. specialized devices” post, and the fact that there seems to be a great drive in people to get impolite on the topic.
    Someone telling to “just play it on XBox” is probably not even in his own mind trying to help, but has probably just visited the “PC vs. console” part of the same forum, and somehow aggregated a significiant amount of righteous fury against PCs.

    I went from using work as an excuse for having a PC for playing to actually using it mostly for non-games stuff. So now some people wonder why I own two PCs, and then I start wondering why others own three consoles and a PC when you could also just play on the PC … whatever. I guess a mouse (and a keyboard?) should become standard accessory for consoles, then console PC ports would probably become much easier. Unless of course if he game makers muck it up.

  34. LadyTL says:

    Oddly enough this problem is why I only game on the 360. I never can find any real solutions to problems I seem to have without people giving useless solutions or saying I need to upgrade my PC or upgrade my OS change to a mac. None of which solves any of my problems. At this point I am just tired of it all and just use the console where I can avoid the stupidity and not be forced into it occasionally like the PC.

  35. Wolfwood says:

    Um y don’t you try it with the Keyboard and Mouse scheme? XD

    i knew it was a port when i bought it so i’d imagine the control scheme was skewed towards the pad. BUT unlike a lot of pc gamers this day and age (broad sweeping generalization based on no statistical backup) who have a pad attached to the PC as well, I do not so i usually make do with K&M setup.

    Surprisingly Dead Rising 2 K&M scheme works. I actually had no problem playing it like a pc game. If i remember they even let you remap keys and actions :O

    Good rant tho, and i’ll save that auto-reply next time i come across those very same assholes XD

    edit: i need to make a habit of consistently capitalizing ‘I’ or leave it as ‘i’ then again who reads anything on the internet written but strangers for proper grammar, spelling, and syntax?

  36. Dev Null says:

    Am I the only one who reads it as “godawful” every time Shamus writes GFWL?

    1. DanMan says:

      Not anymore…that’s awesome

  37. Hymas212 says:

    Download a program called xpadder it solves all thos unsurpported controller issues and also allows you to use the controller with all of your games

  38. RTBones says:

    This is all a big conspiracy to kill PC gaming.

    Consider – this is not a new issue. PC games are (allegedly) more difficult to write code for, given the eleventy billion hardware combinations out there, GFWL, Direct X, and the fact that SOMEONE will try to get a game like Crysis running on a 386-16SX with EGA graphics. PC games (allegedly) cost developers more money to make. They have success with consoles, which have set hardware boundary conditions. They also know that there is cadre of gamers (meekly raises hand) that won’t buy consoles, even though they’ll play games on a console at the homes of friends and family. So what do they do? They offer a popular controller for the console, port it to the PC, make the PC keyboard/mouse controls of popular games kludgy so that PC gamers will buy the controller out of frustration, but make the port buggy enough that the game can virtually not be played on the PC. Given that the game is popular, console gamers will also buy it. Now our PC gamer, who is used to dealing with all sorts of OS issues, consults the internet to get his/her problem solved. What solution is found? “Why u play on PC? Works good good on XBox. No problems for me.” The developers deliberately don’t fix PC controller code. All of this an effort by developers to convince the PC gamer that really, games should be played on consoles, and pouring over frustrating internet answers can be done away with if the PC gamer would just buy a console.

    Or not. Your mileage will vary.

    1. DanMan says:

      To take the conspiracy deeper: not only are the developers intentionally creating this problem, but they hire people to monitor any kind of forum where a useful solution may be developed. They get paid every time they suggest buying a console instead of using the PC and promotions/raises based on how insulting and slanderous their remarks are.

      True story, I swear. I’ve got this friend whose cousin used to date this girl that heard it from someone in line at a grocery store.

    2. silver says:

      To make matter worse, PC isn’t as expensive to develop for these days: instead of trying to support all the different combos, the developer just says “hey, we wrote it to DX10, if your hardware doesn’t work, talk to your vendor.”

  39. AndyL says:


    1. silver says:

      I’m afraid to say this won’t solve the problem, it will just change the names from “PC” and “Xbox” to “Ubuntu” and “Debian” (and “RHEL” and “Gentoo” and… oh, wait. I think instead of solving the problem, we’ve just multiplied the number of groups of people who hate you).

      1. AndyL says:

        I’m sorry, I didn’t think anyone could still say that and be taken seriously. My comment was intended as a type of parody exactly along the lines you just described.

        1. Jarenth says:

          Welcome to the Internet.

  40. MaxDZ8 says:

    Why Don't You Just Play on a Console?
    Because I cannot afford it and since my PC is also old, this means I cannot play AAA games at all.
    Not that I miss AAA games much. The indie scene is much more interesting, generally less performance hungry and fairly cheaper.
    Have you ever played Inside a Star Filled Sky? Fairly intriguing for 5 USD (or less, if you want).

  41. B.J. says:

    Dead Rising 2 works fine on my PC with my 360 controller, but I have the wired version.

    Why u play w/ wireless use wired werks gr8.

  42. Jordan says:

    Seriously? The games don’t “Just work.” with an Xbox controller? I’d been avoiding buying a for-windows one because I have two perfectly functional wireless ones and the adapters are fudging expensive (£40? Oh hell no, son.)
    But I assumed since every game released now only allows you to use the default 360 binds that it would work without flaw. I don’t see any valid reason for it not to. You’re no longer designing games to work with different button layouts or different methods of connection or even the choice of different controls. How do you fail to make that work?

    1. Sumanai says:

      By the power of indifference!

    2. Jarenth says:

      If Microsoft designs things such that they work with your pre-existing hardware, they invest extra time and money and you don’t have to do anything. If Microsoft desings things such that they don’t, they don’t have to do shit and you have to shell out for an additional controller.

      Pretty easy to see their logic here.

  43. Atarlost says:

    And now it’s my turn to be “that guy”; sort of. Unlike “that guy” my solution is not going to cost you money. In fact it would save you money on future game purchases.

    Your problem is that X doesn’t work on Y.

    The source of your problem is that the developers of X are lazy or inept or conspiring against you. Boycott them. Refuse to give any of your hard earned money to them until they start putting out working PC ports and providing free demos as proof of this.

    Eventually you will be happily reduced to games written by teams of hobbyists who write for PCs because they have them and want to game on them. Often they’re written as multiplatform from the get go because the dev-team has no common operating system.

    This also solves the DRM problem almost entirely. Your OS may still have it, and possibly your productivity software, but not your games. Unless as a gaming journalist games count as productivity software for you. In that case you’re kind of out of luck because you need to write about stuff that isn’t actively sabotaging the industry that provides most of the advertising at The Escapist. I suspect a weekly column on games that cost 100% less than the stuff the advertisers are schilling while having better — nobody treats you as a thief for installing Dwarf Fortress or Battle for Wesnoth multiple times — customer service is probably not going to fly.

  44. utzelgrutzel says:

    I only played it with mouse + keyboard and that went fairly well, just the usual issues with actions depending on character instead of camera direction. No steam here either, GFWL is bad enough alone ;)

    I don’t think it was mentioned already, but if xpadder etc. don’t work try http://code.google.com/p/x360ce/

    Also try playing in coop if you have a partner, I only played with a friend it it was a blast. I especially love how all the drama in cutscenes flies out the window when wearing a giant LEGO head :D

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