Great games with bad openings?



  • Hey Allies!

    It's spring break, and since I don't really have a backlog I'm doing the next best thing: replaying old favorites. There's a weird barrier I keep experiencing, though, and it's left me wondering if any other Allies have experienced the same thing. Some games are totally awesome, but they take a while to get there. For the first hour, two hours, in some cases even four hours, you're in either an extended tutorial, a totally unrelated segment of the game, or just have access to too few mechanics for the game to be fun. You know that when you get past these opening sequences the game is great, but knowing that you have to wade through that mediocrity to get to the good part can make it hard to be motivated to replay the game. My examples are Final Fantasy X, Kingdom Hearts 2, and Final Fantasy Tactics. Got anything to add to the list?


  • Global Moderator

    This is a kinda fun topic, there are games as you say with "less good" openings which may turn people off and make them miss out on great experiences.

    First thing that springs to mind are Zone of the Enders 2. I remember buying this, spending way too much time in the first hour running around and feeling like "not much going on". Sure the story were cool, but flying around looking for the right box to shoot with Taper inside were dreadful. However, once that is over the game really kicks off with more gameplay, the story kicks off and it turned out to be one of my favourite games of all times! Get in there!



  • Person 4 & Suikoden 5 take ages to get going. Suppose the same could be said for a lot of JRPGS.



  • @Lotias I've never heard of that, I'll have to check it out! And yeah, this thread was partially created to see what games get better with a little bit of time put into them (there are definitely games that I probably set down sooner than I should have) but also because I felt somewhat guilty for simultaneously longing for and dreading replaying certain games.

    @FutureCorpse Persona 4 is an awesome example! You spend the first 45ish minutes going through an extended tutorial and exposition dump before you get to what the rest of the game is actually like. It sets the tone well in terms of setting, mood, and characters, but somewhat sacrifices gameplay and interaction to do it. When you get into it, it's awesome, but I've definitely found that it can be a hard sell for some people.


  • Global Moderator

    @alexwhiteplays Haha yeah its deffo worth a shot! the whole game can be played through in like 6-8 hours! I really got emotional playing through it, thats why I got so attached to it I think! It is a little cheesy here and there, but really nice! If you can, play the PS3 HD remake over the PS2 version, just to get a slightly better frame rate



  • @FutureCorpse Two of my favorite JRPGs right there :)

    Persona 4 does take a good while to get going, and the first time playing Suikoden V I actually stopped before too long because I didn't find it interesting at first.



  • Wouldn't know. If there was a fun part, I stopped before It... 😂

    Is probably say every MMO ever. You gotta play 100 hours to get to the fun part. Maybe not entirely true.



  • Skyward Sword starts off slow, but when it hits it's stride it's a blast from that point on.

    I'm not a fan of Arkham Asylum's overly scripted beginning. I love the series.



  • The Prologue chapter of The Last of Us is emotional, straight to the point, and packs a heavy punch. It lasts about 10 minutes. The following chapters leading right up until Pittsburgh are an absolute drag. I recall liking it on the first playthrough, but after quite a few, you basically walk around and do very little for about 2ish hours.

    I honestly wish you can skip right to Pitt on NG+



  • I'll have to say Dragon Quest 7. The original takes what seems like hours til you get to your first fight. And from there, another dozen or so til you unlock the fun that is the class system.



  • I know some people here think that Skyrim is not a great game, but whatever. Regardless of that, Skyrim's opening is just Meh at best.



  • I used to think Persona 4 has the sloggiest of slogs for an opening, but then I played Pokemon Moon. Both just drag on forever and in Moon's case are loaded with tutorials that I just absolutely didn't need. At least they picked up massively once the beginnings were over.



  • how has no one said kingdom hearts 1 and 2 yet.



  • I'm a person that will simply put the game down if it starts too slow and never pick it back up again. I just don't have the patience. If you can't hook me in the first hour, you've failed for me, no matter what kind of masterpiece you eventually become. (I'm looking at you Witcher 3).



  • If a game is good, the whole game is good.



  • I have to say Bloodborne has such a bad opening in my opinion. I was new to the Souls/Borne series and I felt like the initial bonfire section is unnecessarily complex/ difficult and stands out in respect to the immediately following sections.

    The sheer number of enemies is not a fair representation, and because of that I nearly quit there and then. It was only on forums where they said "persevere", that I managed to continue (with the help of a guide).

    Admitted I did only then get to the Blood Starved Beast, before giving up again. At least I got past the first area though!!



  • @Tom-Pitcher Actually a pretty good point. That mob in the first area is pretty tough to deal with.. though I do think it teaches how to explore and approach each situation differently rather than head on. It probably could have come a bit later though

    I hate Blood Starved Beast.. that's one of the hardest bosses in the game for me



  • Since Persona 4 was already mentioned, I'll go with Trails of Cold Steel. Those JRPGs sure like to drag out their openings at times.



  • @SabotageTheTruth yea the opening Dungeon in Trails of Cold Steel is literally longer then the first final fantasy.



  • This thread just makes me appreciate Chrono Trigger's pacing even more. That game is flawless.

    Final Fantasy 12 has an awesome prologue/tutorial sequence, followed by a super slow beginning.


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