Glitches are the Devil

Posted on June 28, 2010


Not my PC, but I'm sure whoever owns it gets a LOT of those screens

Glitches. Mentioning the word wrinkles my brow and ignites a burning flame of frustration in my eyes. Like mosquitoes on a serene evening stroll, glitches have become a persistent nuisance for the gaming community.

The greatest trick the devil pulled was convincing the world he doesn’t exist. Likewise, glitches are reputed as innocent bugs happened upon only by the strangest of circumstances. On the contrary, glitches are not anomalies. Glitches play a part in almost all of the video games of recent memory–triple-A titles and bargain bin games alike. From system freezes to stuck PCs to “bamfing” through walls and floors like Nightcrawler during a seizure, glitches happen every day and it’s not cool.

For all their glorious advancement, games haven’t progressed that far beyond the 8-bit glory days because of glitching. Shouldn’t glitches be the first thing eradicated from the gaming experience? Rather they’re surviving and evolving as well as Mario. Why does today’s buggy gaming remind me of blowing into my NES game cartridge and tapping on the console two times to boot up the main screen? Shouldn’t we be past that?

Either publishers irresponsibly launch games with glitches and rely on software patches, or QA teams aren’t getting the job done. Do the developers care enough about their consumers to protect them from glitches? With a $60 price tag, aren’t gamers entitled to cleaner software?

Unfortunately, glitching seems to be here to stay. Like a Siamese twin’s parasitic sibling, glitching survives and mars the gaming experience. I’ve been ridiculed by my family and friends for my criticism and sensitivity towards glitching. And they’re right, I am critical of my video games. I expect more, even demand it. If it’s a matter of man power, I’d gladly sacrifice some bells and whistles for a glitch-free play through. Or, let some gamers beta test for free. Isn’t it worth it?

Comparing apples to oranges never fully illustrates a point, but if a motion picture released and the film skipped frames at pivotal moments, there would be a recall, refunds, and troubleshooting, right? And unlike comic books, owning a flawed video game doesn’t increase its value.

Glitches even make horses sad. Who would want to hurt a horse?

Next thing you know, glitches will start phasing gamers behind lawnmowers, chiding us to be more productive in the real world. Exterminate these horrid glitches, please!

Posted in: Op-Ed, Trends