We’ve all been there. You know, bought a game, went to play it online only to find out the server can’t be found, a host can’t connect, worlds are down for maintenance, disconnects are rampant and so one and so forth. It’s a brutal blow to the abdomen and leads to nothing but misery and disappointment. Obviously this is worse when it’s a strictly online-only game, but it hurts just as much when it’s not. You’d think by now when we buy a game, there’d be something reliable to look forward to, but there just isn’t.
Unreliable servers have been a significant complaint with the launch of next-gen gaming, but more specifically, it’s been a problem with Electronic Arts’ games. Oddly, not so much their sports titles that usually come with the online complaints, but it’s actually the Battlefields and the Need for Speed games that are causing all of the problems for gamers. Nothing sucks more in gaming than finally doing well in an online match and then watching that dreaded disconnect screen pop up. It almost feels like what you just accomplished is for nothing. Yes, this is a first world problem and things could be worse, but seriously?
I’ve experienced this several times throughout the launch of the PlayStation 4 and I know Xbox One owners have met the same disconnect fate. However, this isn’t anything new. Do you remember when Square launched Final Fantasy XIV? It was a clusterbuck of a disaster. Worlds couldn’t stay online, maintenance felt like it was taking place constantly, and you couldn’t even create a character. Sure they gave us 7 free days to compensate, but that’s hardly enough. If you’re not an MMO fan, you probably went through this same ordeal with Rockstar Games and Grand Theft Auto Online.
GTA: Online was a much worse situation than FFXIV and it’s not even close. Gamers had characters disappear, cars vanish, money not show up, the game not connecting and the list goes on. Rockstar tried to make amends by offering you free in game cash for the inconvenience, but by the time they finally shelled that out, a lot of us moved on or we already had mad stacks of cash that made the gesture a weak one. It seems like, despite this being 2013, developers and publishers have still yet to figure out a way to launch a server in a smooth fashion. And, if by some miracle they do launch a smooth server, the game online has so many problems that the server itself might as well just be down too.
We have it rough as gamers. Our parents never had to worry about these server problems. They either had things like pong or actual friends they could just play games with on the couch. Some of them just considered checkers or chutes & ladders enough. We have too much on our plates to worry about and it’s just not that fair. Hopefully one day, we won’t be bothered by poor servers anymore and we’ll be the last generation that had to worry about it. I don’t want my kid growing up in a world like that, do you?