I have noticed with a lot of gamers that we, as a group, seem to be willing to put up with a great deal of aggravation in pursuit of our dearest hobby. We all have different levels of tolerance, but I have been rather impressed with various Youtubers who are willing to subject themselves to hours of tedious and sometimes mind-numbing gameplay just to achieve a certain goal. I, too, can count myself among these determined gamers to some degree. (Hey, I beat Kingom Hearts: Chain of Memories. On the GBA. Multiple times. Every time, it was awful. And yet, for some reason, I did it.)
Even so, I think my tolerance for these things has diminished in recent years to some degree, due to such factors as a busier schedule than I had in the past, more, actually fun, games to play, and life’s problems that make playing a frustrating game seem all the less appealing. Though in recent weeks, I was able to power through some bothersome challenges in the pursuit of gaining Platinum in Kingdom Hearts 3, I was not able to conjure up the same level of patience with Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom.
Though not nearly as good as its predecessor, Ni no Kuni II was fun enough, and I spent countless hours building my kingdom, completing side quests, defeating every tainted monster, and even going so far as to seek out every higgledy stone. Heck, I even suffered through the many Dreamer’s Mazes, including the first 30 levels of the maze in Faraway Forest. No one could say, in those moments, that I was not being exceptionally patient with this game. I even beat Zeta, a decidedly frustrating boss that I believe was part of some sort of DLC I downloaded.
At last, I had reached the final side quest of the game, where I had to defeat Blackhart the Winnower. I suffered through all 30 levels of the Faraway Forest Dreamer’s Maze once more, only to discover that one has to switch to hard mode in order to access levels 31-40. Oh, but that was not yet enough to deter me. I changed the game’s settings to hard mode and forced myself through the maze yet again, even having to defeat the boss on level 30 for the third time. At long last, I had reached level 40, where Blackhart awaited.
And that, dear readers, is when the Duck reached the limits of her previously boundless patience for all things pointless and tedious.
For being what should have been a very challenging boss, on hard mode, mind you, Blackhart was really not that bad. My characters inflicted damage quite slowly, but we also managed to avoid damage to ourselves much easier, as well, a feat with which we did not have much luck when Zeta was involved. Though I found the game’s insistence that we complete an extremely long and dull maze multiple times rather absurd, I was still a willing, if not happy, participant. But then Blackhart did something that crossed the line.
He summoned another boss. Yes, a short ways into the battle, he flies into the air, and a big octopus-squid thing appears. At this point, I was thoroughly ticked, but being the apparently obliging sort that I am, I spend a good deal of time and healing items dealing with it. Or more accurately, I wasted a good deal of time and items. The boss is defeated, Blackhart returns, and I nearly reduce his health to zero.
Oh, but guess what? Now he decides to fly into the air once more and summon one of those golem things. Shortly into this second interruption, I finally run out of items, and I die, and moments later, I am ejecting the disc and returning it to its case, utterly fed up. In all honesty, I think victory against Blackhart would have been assured had those other two bosses not decided to intervene.
I can practice cracking eggs in Kingdom Hearts 3 until I get a score of Excellent. I can redo KH3’s sledding and dancing mini games over and over again until I reach the high score. But every gamer has their limit, and I am never again going to waste my time on a boss fight that can only be reached after trekking through a maze and who has the gall to summon other boss fights mid-battle.
Now that I have shared my tale of woe, dear readers, what does it take for you to reach your gaming breaking point? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!
Image from official Ni No Kuni 2 website.