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The glitch, the bug and the ugly... Post your favourite game bugs here!

Posted at 20:20 on December 18th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete | Delete Attachment
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You are certainly familiar with the following (or a very similar) situation: One moment you are having an intense gaming session, you are absolutely submerged in the game’s atmosphere and about to beat one of the most challenging levels, your pulse is racing, you might just barely make it... and out of nowhere the boss' head comes of as he tries to speak, or you drop through the floor and start falling in white oblivion, while the once solid floor vanishes on the edge of infinity or your avatar's sword hovers, telekinetically, about 2 feet away from his hand. You don't know if you should laugh or cry, for you have just witnessed the nemesis of bad quality assurance: A good old gaming glitch!

Often enough they are rather entertaining and sometimes exploitable to the max. I consider myself a hunter of these virtual pests, that's why I want to dedicate this thread to them.

Feel free to post your very own experiences with obscure game breakers!

For starters I want to describe my most recent discovery: While playing Ski or Die I stumbled across a nice way to go "off-road" (for details see the appended image, don't know if it works for every version, only tried it for DOS):
-) First of all steer your skier to the upper left corner of the main menu, just below 'Compete all'. Touch the left edge.
-) Turn your skier so that when you keep pressing return he slowly drives against and up along the edge.
-) Stop as soon as you start to skid left along the upper corner! Shortly press return again to move one more pixel.
-) Turn your skier 90°, so he is headed for the edge right below 'Compete all'.
-) With a little bit of luck you will drive against the edge and skid along, past the sign and past the event trigger to enter all events.
-) If done right you will leave by the left edge of the screen and come out at the right hand side again, leaving a nice trail of skiers behind!
-) Have fun redesigning the screen!
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Posted at 20:30 on December 18th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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In Imperialism, the best way to defend your country is never to build any fortifications in your provinces. When an enemy army attacks, all you have to do is repeatedly refuse to place your own units. After the third time or so, the enemy will withdraw from the battlefield in confusion, leaving you the victor.

The catch: If you build a fortress, this stops working and suddenly, you become vulnerable!
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 22:11 on December 18th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Oh, here is another good one: The construction on the high seas in Civilization! Just put a settler unit on board any transport ship, activate it during the journey and build fortresses, streets and railroads ;)
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 17:37 on December 19th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Two excellent exploits for Dune II:
-) The range of the Sonic Tank depends on the game speed... and the AI always asumes it is the one at the medium setting. So if you are attacked by Atreides turn the speed all the way down and watch them shoot far too short. If you get those fine tanks yourself turn the speed all the way up and get a thread range even further than the rocket tanks or towers.
-) Normally the Ordos are the worst house: No quads, rocket or siege tanks, a special unit that has an attack that is fun but has a very limited use... that is until you think like a real Ordos and start to spice things up! When you turn a unit over to your side with the Deviator, quickly select it and activate the "Attack" command (you might also select "Move" but this isn't terribly useful) but don't give any order yet! Wait for the unit to be turned back to it's original owner. If done right you will still be able to select a target... and if you actually do, the unit will follow this order. So you can send the AIs units back to their base and let them merrily destroy its structures. Since they are it's own units it won't do a thing about it! Can be used to a lesser degree against the Ordos themselves, if they attack you with Deviators.
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Posted at 17:37 on December 25th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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A fistfull of useful exploits for some of the countless bugs of Might and Magic IX:
-) In the Drangheim bank waits a NPC that offers a 10% interest to any gold you collect. Very handy for deposits and withdrawals: Simply store and immediatly retreive your money at any bank house and gain infinite amounts of gold!
-) The Learning skill at Grandmaster level is horribly bugged: I don't know the exact percentage by which it increases your XP gain, but it almost seems like it quintuples to decuples your XP... which makes for some very high level wizards and liches.
-) The Divine Intervention spell normally can only be cast once per day and ages you character by one year... not so in MM9: Instand healing with no loss, since it also restores your mana.
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Posted at 10:36 on December 27th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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In some versions of Alone in the Dark II, walking onto a special floor tile in front of the house will play a death animation, but actually teleport you forward in the game, enabling you to skip the stupid hedge maze.
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 12:43 on December 27th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Originally posted by Mr Creosote at 10:36 on December 27th, 2012:
In some versions of Alone in the Dark II, walking onto a special floor tile in front of the house will play a death animation, but actually teleport you forward in the game, enabling you to skip the stupid hedge maze.


I never knew this was a bug! I always assumed this was the correct way to enter the manor! :D

But I do know of another bug/cheat for this one: Somewhere in the house (I think on the ground floor), you can find a bottle of poison. If you drink it you take serious damage and should die, that is unless you keep pressing the return key all the time, which will bring up the actions menue as soon as you finished drinking. Drink the poison again and again and your Health will drop all the way down to the integer overflow. Around 32.000 health points make for a decent buffer for all those nasty gun fights! ;)
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Posted at 12:47 on December 27th, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Originally posted by Herr M. at 12:43 on December 27th, 2012:
Originally posted by Mr Creosote at 10:36 on December 27th, 2012:
In some versions of Alone in the Dark II, walking onto a special floor tile in front of the house will play a death animation, but actually teleport you forward in the game, enabling you to skip the stupid hedge maze.


I never knew this was a bug! I always assumed this was the correct way to enter the manor! :D

Well, it could be intended as a cheat… it would be a fairly obvious one, though, so I always considered it a bug. The 'regular' way to enter the mansion, I'd say, is going through the hedge maze and enter the cellar from there.
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 15:56 on December 31st, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete | Delete Attachment
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Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine + Jeep = some creative parking ;)
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Posted at 16:06 on December 31st, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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This one's actually the opposite of a bug, but I loved it anyway in a closely related sense. Look at the first screenshot of Timequest on this page. This happens after repeating the same action thirty times or so in this particular scene. That's the sort of thing which actually does usually trigger bugs in games!
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 17:05 on December 31st, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Oh my God! What was that action? Feed him 30 figs? :D
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Posted at 17:10 on December 31st, 2012 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Exactly. There is a bowl of figs which, programming-wise, is a bit of a problem, because it's basically a container filled with an unlimited amount of the same object. Not trivial to program. If you repeat getting a fig and giving it to the Sultan, the game will first simply repeat the same response about him eating it as expected. Until… that happens :D
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 20:30 on January 1st, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Some tricks I learned over the years for Master of Orion II

-) When you have a planet with maximum population build androids and keep producing them (ignore all warnings). On some planets this will lead to a severe overpopulation which through a bug somehow creates space for new colonists. This way you can have planets with up to 60 colonists (even without the subterranean advantage).
-) Normally the cheats warn the other players and prevent you from entering the hall of fame. Except for the build cheat (alt-crunch) which doesn't.
-) Oldie but goodie: Build a ship with Time Warp Facilitator and Phasing Cloak: The extra turn you get for the time warp will let you recloak your ships before your enemy can fire back.
-) Not actually a bug, but I almost found it kind of disappointing, that the following startegy worked ridiculously well: As soon as you can build colony ships in a matter of 3-4 turns keep spamming them and crowd the whole galaxy. While this does take a lot of micromanagement, it almost always leads to an unstoppable empire. That's also why feudal isn't the worst goverment type (since it does reduce ship cost).
-) Also I liked how the Blackhole Generator immobilized enemy ships, which made for some great boarding opportunities.
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Posted at 21:06 on January 1st, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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What about the enemy soldiers readily walking into the chasm/the river in the battles of North & South if place your own soldiers right on the other side? If that's not worth being called a bug…
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 18:09 on January 5th, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Almost every Sierra SCI game had timing issues: On faster machines certain actions tended to happen so fast, you had no chance to react.

Most of the time this was annoying, but for the Quest for Glory games this could be used to train your hero a lot faster. Especially the EGA version of the first one (So you want to be a hero) comes to my mind, where your hero dodged lightning fast, so the enemy could never hit you. Great for raising Agility, Dodge and Luck. Or even better in the fourth game (Shadows of Darkness), where your stamina regenerated during a fight: On a slower machine it took ages to regain the full amount, on faster ones it is a matter of seconds.
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Posted at 20:17 on January 5th, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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The last time I played Master of Magic, it nearly made me revise my complete old review and give it a bad rating. Not because of the major bugs which make every second game unfinishable, because it just crashes in some battle, but because of the major AI and rule bugs which can very well spoil the fun in spite of the excellent foundations.

Why doesn't the AI ever move out of a fortified position even if the attacker is using the opportunity to get his ranged units close? Why does the AI always keep attacking the very same enemy unit, even if it has been souped up by the player to passively withstand any such attack while the other units rain down death on the AI (i.e. give one single unit Invulnerability and you have won the battle)? Why are the heroes so ridiculously overpowered that they can single-handedly destroy whole empires? Why does the AI have no concept of defending its capital cities?

As I said, only part of these major annoyances are actually technical bugs, but it's just the rules of this game which are buggy, too!
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 22:12 on January 7th, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Well concerning bad AI: RTS games tend to have very weak ones (often of the simple "build - move - attack the same spot" varieties), often "balanced" by extra starting troops for the CPU players.

One of the worst AI failures I can think of must be in the original Command&Conquer, where the computer never attacks sand bag walls. He just keeps lining up his units in front of them...
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Edited by Herr M. at 22:12 on January 7th, 2013
Posted at 19:00 on January 22nd, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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Some "hints" for DSA1 Die Schicksalsklinge (or Realms of Arkania : Blade of Destiny):

-) In a dungeon on the small island of Runin there is a shrine with an offering box which is meant to be used to donate some money. If you spent the maximum amount of money (99999 or somehting like that) you actually get this amount of coins instead of giving it away! Keep doing this and you should get rich in almost no time. Funny thing: You still can't buy one of the ships in Thorwal, even if you gather the 20.000 (or so) Dukaten the game asks for. ;)

-) If you are in need of some XP: enter and leave the mines in Prem. You get ~8 XP every time you this. Not that much, but it is an unlimited supply.
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Posted at 21:47 on January 22nd, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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A definite bug, but I could never reproduce it reliably: Shadow of the Comet would sometimes let me skip most of the annoying tomb sequence. By going back and forth between two rooms, I would suddenly be teleported straight to the inner sanctum where the bad guy waited, bypassing all the deadly rooms in between.
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Now you see the violence inherent in the system!
Posted at 18:45 on January 29th, 2013 | Quote | Edit | Delete
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One of my favourites for Super Mario Land 3: Wario Land:

You will need a Jet-Helmet and access to the 5th level of Parsley Woods (course 35, second train level). When you enter the level move all the way to the right, don't enter the door but jump on the roof and step to the edge, face left. Now jump as high as possible and fire the jet engine and let wario fly until the flame dies out. He will cross the screen to the left border... which he will glitchically cross in order to come out on the right side again. Also he will lose height, but don't touch anything! After some time he will drop through the floor and enter a strange white oblivion filled with invisible blocks, the one or the other duck, secret entrances and random deathtraps. Keep moving around and try to stay alive as long as possible. ;)
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