What's Your Worst PC Gaming Story?

What's Your Worst PC Gaming Story?

It's possible to love something so much, even if it sometimes frustrates the crap out of you. Take PC gaming, for example.

PC gamers have it good. The PC is easily the best single platform for playing video games; you get the cheapest, best-looking versions of the big-budget blockbusters, a vast collection of classic games, and a near-endless selection of cutting-edge, experimental indie stuff. There are few things in gaming are as rewarding as building your own gaming PC, and the satisfaction of customising every little detail of the thing you use to play video games.

But as great as that all is, PC gaming has no shortage of unique frustrations. Malfunctioning hardware, stressful installations, unoptimised games and annoying, mandatory DRM platforms.

Sometimes, the best way to cope is to share. What's the most maddening thing you've ever had to suffer through for PC gaming? What was the thing that made you question why you even bother? Share your stories below.

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    After many attempts, I've yet to complete a single game on pc.
    port it to console with pisspoor, badly implemented controls & I'll play for hours.

      Have you tried a gamepad controller?

        Yep, my best guess is, because of my boring office job, I don't like computers no more.

        When I upgrade, I might try and set something up on the telly so it doesn't *feel* like being at work.

          This is exactly what got me into console gaming. 10 hours infront of a computer for work, resolving issues. Not what I want to be doing at home as well.

          That said, console gaming isn't what it used to be. These days games need to install, patch, update, search online for a fix, repeat.

    I built a new PC and the motherboard completely shat itself. Of course, this happened around the time Diablo 3 came out. Nothing much, just a game I was incredibly excited for.

    I ended up playing D3 on a MacBook Air that would occasionally manage to hit double digit frame rates in the third act.

    Oh and I ended up buying a replacement motherboard after weeks of the store being completely useless.

      I am building my first computer this weekend. Your story does not make me happy.

        Well the point of this article is bad PC gaming stories, ask someone to post a best PC gaming stories and you will get a whole lot of cheering up :)

        It was a bad part from a dodgy vendor. Dodgy vendors are having a much harder time being dicks about their refund policy in the last few years, so I doubt you'll have the same problem.

    CPU slot was a bit iffy. Was at a LAN at a mates and every time someone closed the Bedroom door, it was followed by "Don't let the door sla...." then the PC rebooted.

    Trying to play Splinter Cell Conviction on PC back when uplay still required a persistent internet connection was fun. My internet was fine. The connection between me and the uplay servers however not so much. The need for a persistent connection would be patched out later long after I'd finished it on 360. Yay?

    I deleted System 32 once...

      What? Why?

        Because it makes your computer go faster.
        I easily get 15+ frames on my games after deleting system32.

          DO NOT DELETE SYSTEM 32. without it you cant even start up your computer. oh my god dankey

        I needed to free up space to install Age of Empires 2.
        I didn't know what it was.
        It wasn't named something obvious like "Windows executable, highly important, do not delete".

    Trying to push all the device drivers into upper memory so that I have enough free memory to play Dune 2.

    OMG I feel so old typing out the above sentence.

      I know those feels brother....


        For some more of dem feels, how about having to make a separate boot entry for Ultima 7 because their stupid voodoo system wouldn't work with expanded memory.

          I found my U7 boot floppy last year, pained me to throw it away, was so proud to finally work out all the right things to put on there so I could play it with sound and the voice etc... but now I just use Exult lol.. I did put it in my PC (my desktop still has a 3 1/4" drive, when I bought it I thought "pfft SD cards, flash in the pan") it just made some crunching noises and took FOREVER to open.. so it's either dodgy or I am much more impatient than I was 15 years ago.

      Oh wow, somehow I'd forgotten all about that. Now I'm trying to remember the difference between extended memory and expanded memory...

      Having a special boot floppy around to do just that, to play Lucasarts games and Dune 2. :)

      ...and then writing new dos boot menus in autoexec.bat and config.sys to cope with a multitude of scenarios...

      Last edited 27/03/15 12:51 pm

      Keeping the cd and mouse drivers loaded for command and conquer was similar
      It was helping!

      Right with you - I was even lucky enough to have a memory optimiser given to me (that actually worked) and was able to cram all sorts of drivers into Expanded Memory to keep as much of that precious 640KB free for games.

    Went to Kotaku for PC gaming content once.

    My secret shame.

    Trying to play DOTA back when I just got my first wireless router...Nothing is as frustrating as finally turning a 1 hour game around when your router decides it's a nice time for a nap

      The reconnect function is easily the most important change between Dota 1 and Dota 2.

      I do miss the -switch function though.

    I wouldn't even know where to begin. I taught myself how to build PCs. Put my first one together in '98. Had NO idea what I was doing.

    I've fried so many components since then through over clocking or just stupidity. Occasionally things have died that weren't my fault, and then you have to find where the fault is. That's not fun either.

    Red Alert 2.
    Was fine for a while, then one day the game decided I was a pirate and all my buildings would blow up the moment I started a game.
    Never bought another Westwood game again.

      To get rid of that instantly exploding building issue the trick was to pirate and crack the game.


    - Brand new code for Far Cry 3 was apparently invalid, account was temp. banned, code worked next morning

    - Watch Dogs downgrade

    - Lack of optimisation in Assassins Creed games (namely multithreading, same issue as FC4)

    - Uplay

      As Jim Sterling would say, Ubisoft's done Ubisofted again.

      uPlay was the first thing that came to mind when thinking of worst PC gaming experience. I have refused to buy any Ubi game that uses it but I recently got a free copy of Far Cry 4 with my video card so I reinstalled it and gave it another crack.

      Still absolutely awful.

    I only really got into one MMO on PC and that was City of Heroes/Villains, may that game rest in peace.

    I remember playing in a party and we had this one fella who, well I couldn't tell if he was a complete idiot or just a massive troll. He never attacked enemies, never helped and was constantly complaining, "I need PL", "help me lvl plz".

    Eventually the dick head drew a bunch of aggro and got us all killed. I shit you not, once the enemies walked away from our lifeless bodies, this guy approached us all and asked,

    "y u die"

    Bought Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition. Games for Windows Live decided to fuck me over big time. GFWL wouldn't connect for some reason so I couldn't play the game. I reinstalled GFWL, Dark Souls, forwarded ports, uninstalled firewalls, all that shit. In the end I had to install some third party mod and that worked... fuck GFWL was absolute rubbish.

      Hacking CONFIG.SYS to make enough RAM for a game to run.

      Installing Dead Rising 2 and finding out that it required G4WL to run, and that the version it required to run wasn't included in the install. Followed by an hour or so messing around before I finally got it to run. Then, a year later, MS announcing that G4WL was to be retired.

      That sinking feeling after paying for the Bioshock Infinite Season Pass.

      That other sinking feeling after buying an Early Access game on Steam, only to realise that either (1) the devs now had my money and had retired to Brazil (wave, Towns) or (2) the devs have some fundamentally flawed ideas about gameplay (wave, Godus).

      (Steam need to hold on to half the sales for Early Access titles, the money to be either released when the game is released in playable state, or returned to the purchaser.)

    Never had issue with anything, except when a new game releases or beta releases that does not have sli profile. The pain of running sli

    daisychaining 10 486's togeather to play quake!!!! did it once in the it lab at school to prove it could be done!!!!

    My motherboard is currently on the fritz. It randomly decides to restart the PC, with a heavy bias towards when first turned on or when the graphics card is doing some work (gaming).
    It adds an extra level of difficulty to whatever game I'm playing. Halfway through that Bossfight; computer restarts. :(
    Sometimes it can take 20+ minutes of restarts for it to reach a 'stable' state when turning it on. To replace it, though, means new motherboard, new processor, new cooling unit\heat sink. Can't justify the cost just yet.

      Check the capacitors on the motherboard for swelling (they should be flat). This issue may also be your power supply - Try unplugging some unnecessarily from USB.... Probably do the USB thing first.

    Generally every PC LAN had some hicup...the reason I went over to console lanning and never looked back.

      Yep. I remember more than one supposed LAN 'party' where an entire room full of sweating nerds spent several hours trying to successfully set up said LAN to the point where we could play a game or two of Warcraft before the sun came up. Fun it was not.

        But never had any issues with console lans...well last gen console lans, seems lans are off the agenda this time round.

      Yeah, back before having a router in your home was common most people had no idea how networking worked and would try all kinds of nonsense to try and make things work.

      These days your modem/router takes care of all that for you but these days internet is good enough that small LANs have kind of died out.

      I've had some insane difficulties with console LANs. The problem is that you can't change anything, so if it doesn't work you're screwed.

    Somehow managing to have Windows 3.1 stop working after trying to change EMS to XMS memory. My brother and I had about two hours before our parents got home to fix it, lest we have to admit we borked the entire computer to play some silly shareware game (might have been Descent perhaps - can't recall).

    Scraped in the repair with seconds to spare!

    More recently, losing a KOTOR playthrough which was quite literally about half an hour from the end, as for some reason it was saving to my Dropbox only and I deleted it from there.

    worst would be Combat Flight Simulator 3 - so close yet so buggy.

    Typhoons arent sposed to fly like BSG Vipers, as fun as it is straffing while flying away from a convoy :/

    X3 is a v close second - sorry but StarForce simply wont work on your build so your game is useless. Yay

    One juicy Steam sale after another and me only having 12 gig of slow wireless every month ...

    If physical copies ever go the way of the dodo I'm fucked ..

      Or you could quit being such a cheapskate and fork out for some decent internet :)

        Nope, I live out in the country and it's the only option that's aviliable and works

          You could fork out a few hundred thousand to get Fibre installed to your farm, stop being so cheap!

          Have you considered a HD swap program? I had a friend who moved out to the bush and had bugger all internet. Once a month he would mail me a big SSD with a wish-list of what he wanted downloaded (I had unlimited downloads at the time) and I would mail it back to him. He paid the postage, and would buy me drinks when we caught up as compensation. It's a good system!

          If you do though, flash drives are the way to go. He originally started with an older external, and it didn't even make it through one round trip before dying.

      Are you me? Also have 12 gigs on Telstra 3G. All the money saved in sales isn't worth it when you're paying $80 per month for less than a third of a new game's content.

      I'm just pretty mad that we are not eligible for the free plan upgrade all wired Telstra users get. We are technically not classed as mobile, as we get broadband unmetering instead of mobile unmetering (e.g. the now gone Steam servers were unmetered for me, but would not have been through a tethered mobile), yet we once again get the shaft.

      Also means I'm limited to bloody Presto if I want a VOD service :|

      Not to mention the router randomly losing all signal to the towers multiple times per day.

    Had more than a handful in my time, but most recent pain was Dragon Age Inquisition.

    With the exception of my HD6970 my PC is fairly well catered for the games requirements. The game stuttered horribly and was completely unplayable on the lowest settings.
    After digging around I noticed similar issues and managed to identify an outdated RAID driver was causing a memory leak, freaking DA:I incredibly CPU heavy engine.

    Still, the game sucked horribly with my graphics card, and I had to resort to Beta drivers until a patch landed. Even then I had to adjust a lot of settings to get it smooth.

    5 hours in I could finally I could play the game! Got to my first door and couldn't use it. For some reason the "Use" key wouldn't work (another bug discussed in the forums)

    I dug out my 360 controller and haven't stopped playing since, but it had me considering a PS4 several times, but sanity prevailed and I have started to save for a better graphics card.

    Used the old Windows Compression tool on my whole "C" drive to make some extra room for a game...yeah didn't go to plan when it basically zipped my whole drive into itself. Good times.

    I manually detected and destroyed a trojan spyware/adware infestation once. It was the kind that installs itself and then invites all of its friends over to play on your PC while disabling things like the task manager and adware detection tools. It was a rather gruelling and stressful process to try and remove every trace since it self-propagated but with HijackThis in my left hand and KillBox in my right, I slew the hydra and peace was restored to the world.

    Needing to use Windows itself was a nightmare experience.

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