So I was, yesterday night, trying to get acquainted with the latest Silent Hill installment: “Downpour“.
I had just finished playing “The Last of Us” and, usually a couple of evenings every week, I keep playing with “Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City“, so my fingers are “set” on these games.

At a certain point, the situation was getting rough downtown Silent Hill and here I was …. trying to run (but it wouldn’t work), trying to fight (it didn’t work out either) and trying, at least, not to die.
Sadly, I didn’t make it, so I had my first game over after about 40 minutes of play.

This is not a “first impression report” on Silent Hill: Downpour. I’m just upset on the controls!
Is there a “real reason” why the controls have to be different almost in every game? Can’t we standardize a little bit?

Sure, every game coder probably suggests a given button layout according to the experience he/she has in mind but, IMHO, why it always has to be different?
Many games use, as a standard (PS3 layout) L1 to aim and R1 to shoot. This leaves L2 available (in conjunction with the left analog stick) to run and R2 for special purposes. All the other buttons are then used in pretty standard ways (X to interact and so on).

I don’t even remember what happened to me yesterday night inside that damn diner in Silent Hill … I just know that when I tried to run, I throw my only weapon away instead! A similar thing happened to me a few weeks ago. That night, Tony and I decided to have some fun in the Dead Island of Banoi. He sure had a lot of fun … since he couldn’t understand why I kept throwing my super-modded weapon away while zombies were kicking my butt!

At this point, you are probably wondering why, in Heavens, I didn’t remap the controls BEFORE starting to play.
Well, first of all… I forgot! 🙁 Secondly, it is not always possible.

As an example, I will take you for a moment in Raccoon City. This game is even more creative in inventing new ways to torture you. Here’s how: you use the L3 button to run which, in conjunction with X, will allow you to jump/dash (to avoid a Tyrant blow, for example). But the X button is also used to interact with objects, like picking up weapons, ammo and such. It is also used to revive your team-mate if he/she has died.
Now, can you imagine what’s gonna happen if you are running away from Nemesis and you have to revive a mate that died dropping his weapon and falling on a bunch of ammo? Don’t laugh: I had such an experience more than once, and it wasn’t fun to me…..!

Quoting a colleague of mine: “Flexibility comes from the highest level of standardization. What you guys do is CONFUSION!”

But don’t mind me. It’s just a morning rant.

[If you missed the original “Rant” posted by ToAks, please check here ]

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