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"Actual games shots taken from a version you haven't bought."
Porting a program to another system is seldom an easy task. If you had the good fortune to be able to consistently use cross-platform libraries while writing the original program, you might be able to get away without having to do any code rewriting. Otherwise, you're looking at significant rewrites ahead. Multi Platform development can help avoid this, but if the developers are rushed, the version for system with which they're least-familiar will likely suffer.
To qualify the program as a Porting Disaster one or more of the following major points has to be present.
- Game Breaking Bugs only present in the port in question.
- Substantial amounts of missing content, such as whole levels, playable characters/vehicles, weapons, and the like.
- Particularly with ports to Nintendo systems, certain things might get changed around with no overall impact on quality (such as removing crosses or direct mentions of God and Death), but when the change is notable to the casual observer ("wait, wasn't there that cool hovercraft minigame between these two areas?"), then it becomes significant.
- Poor quality visuals, audio or controls which can't be excused by the host system's technical limitations.
- Clumsy controls, even if you try to forget the old control layout. For example, imitating pad control badly on a keyboard, not supporting mice or customised control setups in a console-to-PC port, trying to cram too many hotkey functions onto controller buttons in a PC-to-console port, or forgetting entirely that a console-to-PC port even has a keyboard at its disposal.
- Poor performance compared to games of similar or greater complexity on the host platform. This point can be subdivided into two areas which may or may not both be present:
- Inconsistent or perpetually slow frame-rates.
- Ridiculously long loading times, given the complexity of the program.
See also Polished Port, where a game is greatly improved during the development of a ported version.
Please only add examples of games that contain game breaking bugs or are broken to the point of unplayability, NOT minor glitches or annoyances.
Disastrous ports to games consoles:
Amiga CD 32
- The Amiga CD32 version of Battletoads, which was obviously copypasted from the already not-so-great Amiga version. Half of the levels are cut, the controls scheme is awful (you have to press up on the d-pad to jump, nevermind the fact that the CD32 controller has more than enough buttons), it can only play either the music or sound effects (a common quirk with desktop Amiga games, but completely avoidable on the CD-32), and barely-recolored graphics that actually looks worse in some way than the vibrant NES original. Considering the CD32 is a 32-bits system, this is really pathetic.
- X-COM, partially because of using a joypad to control it. The main problem however is the fact that the CD32 only has 1 KB of memory available for saves. Not only are you limited to building a single base, the savegame takes up the entire space, preventing you from saving anything else from any other game without deleting it.
- Pac-Man, quite possibly the reigning king of infamously bad porting jobs and one of the major players in The Great Video Game Crash of 1983: Being the most popular arcade game of its day, Atari knew that having the home version on their system could be a license to print money for them, so they wanted the game on their hands as fast as possible, released the unfinished alpha version as soon as it was done, bugs and all (the game couldn't even draw all the ghosts on-screen at once, instead having them flicker in and out of existence), and manufactured 12 million copies of it (2 million more than there were Atari consoles sold at the time, believing that the game would boost console sales too). The end result was a complete disaster for Atari.
- The later ports of Ms. Pac-Man and Junior Pac-Man were handled far better; Junior Pac-Man in particular had vertically scrolling mazes and (still-primitive graphics aside) matched nearly every gameplay feature of the arcade original, minus the between-level intermissions.
- In the late-1980s, post-Video Game Crash and in the era of NES and Master System, several more arcade games that the 2600 wasn't supposed to handle were butchered and ported to the system, most infamously Double Dragon.
- The 2600 port of Defender. Horrible flicker, blocky cityscape graphics, and a game-breaking invisibility glitch when you fire. You have to go off-screen to use hyperspace or the Smart Bomb. The later superior port of Stargate (Defender II), which used both joysticks for the controls, showed that this was inexcusable. They Just Didn't Care the first time.
- Miner 2049 er was back-ported by Tigervision from Atari 8 Bit Computers to the Atari 2600, so the downgraded graphics and reduced number of stages (two releases with three each) were to be expected. That walking was slow and jumps could barely clear enemies had no such excuse.
- The Atari 5200's analog stick was notoriously problematic, but no game released for the system was cursed with worse controls than the port of Gorf.
Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) / Family Computer (Famicom)
- 1942 was one of several early Capcom games ported to the NES by Micronics, before Capcom wised up and started doing NES ports in-house. Suffers from slowdown issues and other flaws. It Gets Worse. The March of Midway, originally a track comprised of marching and whistling, replaces the whistling with beeping.
- 720 Degrees - Horrible graphics, ear-bleeding music, broken play control (for example, spinning and other moves are frustrating to pull off, and the ramp event is now nearly unplayable). To add insult to injury, they took out the expert mode. Inexcusable -- the NES can do considerably better than this. This is about as bad as the Taiwanese pirate ports. And it was licensed, made when Tengen still had a contract with Nintendo.
- Aladdin fared as badly on the NES. While the bootleg port by Super Game still had graphical and control problems, the official port by NMS Software suffered from these illnesses in a bigger extent. But it already got worse before, just when another pirate original version, Aladdin II, was released...
- Athena - The NES port was handled by the same team that worked on the NES version of Ikari Warriors, turning what was a passable arcade platformer into what is widely regarded as one of the worst NES games. The original arcade game's Turbo Grafx 16 quality graphics were translated into a parade of flicker and slowdown, and the controls were made worse.
- Castelian - An 8-bit port of a decent computer game titled Tower Toppler/Nebulus. To list this port's many flaws:
- The control scheme is messed up. You jump with the A button...and shoot with the A button. Thus, you can't jump if you're standing still; you have to run to jump and stand still to shoot. There's no action assigned to the B button.
- The graphics are horrible. The title screen has roughly two colors, all ugly shades of green. The enemy designs range from "uninspired" to "what is that supposed to be?".
- You can't stand still on stairs. The character slides back down the stairs if you stop in the middle of them.
- The collision detection is appalling. Several times, an enemy will score a "hit" on your character when the sprites are not even close to touching.
- The game involves climbing to the top of a tower to destroy it.  Some of the tiles your character can walk on are fake tiles that will send you down a level or two. The catch? There's no way to tell which tiles are fake but walking into them and falling down. And the first one is right in front of you when you start the first level — and if you fall from the first level, you lose a life. Anyone playing for the first time is going to walk forward through the fake tile...
- Each level has a time limit, which is just about enough for you to finish the level assuming you make no mistakes at all. If you take too long, an enemy that resembles a giant floating clump of marbles appears. This enemy will actively chase you and can't be killed. Worse, it doesn't move around the tower like you do — it moves across the screen on a tangent perpendicular to the tower. If it's coming at you from the left, no matter how far around the tower you go it will STILL be coming at you from the left.
- There are two difficulty settings, "Easy" and "Hard". The only difference is that "Easy" gives you two continues and "Hard" gives you none.
- You can have either music or sound effects, but not both. The music is pretty much the title screen music, which is an unimpressive dirge. The "sound effects" are basic bleeps and bloops, hardly anything that stretches the capabilities of the NES. Yet they couldn't have both at the same time. Or neither.
- The ending is the Game Over screen regardless of whether you win or lose.
- The company that developed the game, Triffix Entertainment Inc., pretty much faded into obscurity soon after this game was released on the NES. Truly a shining example of Porting Disaster.
- Conan: The Mysteries of Time - A licensed port of a classic C64 game by System 3 titled Myth: History in the Making, this version suffered from poor play mechanics, graphics and music compared to the original C64 release. Conan has been derided by many NES players, not all of whom are familiar with the earlier computer releases.
- Ghostbusters - This port of Activision's computer game is infamous for the screwed-up driving sequences and the infamous nearly-impossible stairway sequence.
- Ghosts N Goblins - Handled by the same team that ported 1942 (also the same company that ported Ikari and Athena to the NES) and suffers from the same issues.
- Ikari Warriors - The arcade version used a rotary joystick system, allowing players to control their character's movement and aim separately. This control system wouldn't have worked out on the NES controller, which only had a cross-shaped d-pad, so naturally developers took it out so that the player's aims at the same direction their character is moving. Unfortunately they did it the worst way possible. Instead of instantly turning around the direction the player pushes, their character does a full rotation while moving at the same time, causing them to walk in a circle just to turn around. It doesn't help matters that the rest of the game isn't hot either, with plain graphics and lots of flickering.
- Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade for the NES (the Ubisoft release, not the original game released by Taito) was a port of the PC action game, which NMS Software saddled with horrendously grainy graphics seemingly produced by taking the Sega Master System graphics and compressing the palette.
- Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom for the NES was based on the Atari arcade game , but like some other arcade-to-NES conversions became a Reformulated Game rather than a straight port. Indy could now jump and use alternate weapons, but the controls for these were clumsy. Whereas the arcade game told players right on the screen what needed to be done, level goals in the NES version were bewilderingly unintuitive. The graphics are also very poor for the NES, with backgrounds being hideous washes of blue or green.
- King's Quest V - Novotrade tried their hardest to cram 256-color visuals into an 8-bit cart and quick mouse actions onto a controller, but it just couldn't be done well. Have a look.
- The Last Ninja - An unnumbered port of the C64 game by System 3 titled Last Ninja 2, it was handled by the same that worked on Conan and suffered from the same issues. To make matters worse: Matt Gray, the guy who composed the music in the original C64 version, also did music for a number of Codemasters' NES games, including Fantastic Dizzy and Micro Machines. But they couldn't bother to hire him for this one; instead, they wrote new music in-house at Beam Software. (This company also made the execrable Back to The Future game with its single in-game tune.)
- The Lion King - A disaster with sluggish and unresponsive controls, physics and jumping mechanics that are broken beyond belief, and the game barely resembles the original 16-bit version. The graphics could've been better but aren't horrible for NES standards. What's sad about this port is even the bootleg port created by Super Game is superior to it gameplay- and graphics-wise (music as well, due to the fact all Super Game's ports are done with using Konami sound engine) and even resembles the original game more.
- Twin Eagle: Revenge Joe's Brother - Choppy framerates, horrible graphics and music, watered-down play mechanics. It plays like one of those unlicensed pirate games.
- Winter Games - The NES version forced the player to watch a subpar animation sequence that couldn't be skipped and the selection of games was far inferior to the Atari 2600 version. The badly-animated, detail-lacking graphics and unresponsive control scheme are quite bad for the NES.
NES/Famicom (pirate originals)
- Waixing and Nanjing deserve a separate page because 99.9% of their games are made on the same RPG engine. Oh, and don't forget how balanced the games are. Good luck beating them all. Oh, and notice that these are all in Chinese - there are barely any English translations, and if there are any, they're from fans.
(Note that the reason these pirates are made is that the vast majority of cheap consoles in China during the 1990s and even now were all bootleg clones of the NES, or more specifically the Famicom.)
- M&M Heroes, the port of the first Heroes of Might and Magic is playable indeed, but only if you can get over with the scrappy graphics, not-so-humble interface and bleepy music. Otherwise, you'd rather play Game Boy ports instead.
- Biohazard a.k.a. Resident Evil was a third-person survival horror game, but became a top-down RPGish type game up until you got into random battles with zombies and other assorted horrors, wherein it switched gameplay to the combat model used in Resident Evil Gaiden.
- Oh, and the music! *overpitched voice* TA-DA-TA-DA-TA-DA-TA-DA-TA-DA DUN! DUN!! DUN!!! DUN!!!! DUUUUUUUUNN!!!!!
- Commandos. Apart from the title and WWII setting, it has nothing else to do with the original.
- Relatively new port of...Warriors Orochi. Includes loads of barely-beatable mazes, even bigger loads of enemy hordes and, of course, the retarded balance, which turns the game into completemadness when you've gotta fight 20 enemies at once. Have fun.
- Subverted with Nanjing's Pokémon Yellow, which remains accurate to the original game, more or less...
- Final Fantasies got PWNed by both companies, except while Waixing produced cheap title hacks of the first two games, Nanjing went further and reconverted parts 4, 5, and 7.
- As you may have guessed, yes, these are crappy. But, seeing that part seven got a fan translation to English, it says something.
- In fact, the NES port of Final Fantasy 7, while far from perfect, is impressive enough that a group of dedicated ROM hackers are working on improving it into Polished Port territory.
- Talking about Squaresoft's creations, Chrono Trigger. Drastically cut, compared to the original.
- Diablo? Ever Quest? Sorry, like Commandos, these are not ports.
- Another new-game example, King of Fighters R1 and R2. Knowing the universe and the games very well, you'd expect this to be direct-to-NeoGeo-Pocket-Color ports...not. In reality, these are King of Fighters Kyo clones, except they take place during the events of '95 and '96. Even if these weren't dumped yet, the ad booklet says it all.
- One more game by SNK, Samurai Shodown RPG, also took a critical hit from Nanjing.
- Chinese love Koei's games based on Three Kingdoms epics, so expect a lot of Nanjing/Waixing's crappy/not so crappy/YourMileageMayVary ports.
- Especially funny to see Legend of Cao Cao, a Japanese-only PC tactics game with isometrical view being translated onto straight top-down RPG.
- Nanjing's NES version of The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap is yet another case of "barely even a port": the storyline and even some graphics remain intact, but that's about the extent of it. Pity the poor child who expected Zelda's famous active battles and soundtrack, only to find random turn-based encounters and music from Pokemon in their place.
- To finish this line of Porting Disaster, it should be mentioned that in 99.5% of cases, the music doesn't belong to the places which were ported from the original games. You'd expect their Golden Sun to have the same music as in original? Nope. The above Legend of Cao Cao has it.
- Hummer Team a.k.a. Somari Team a.k.a. Yoko Soft a.k.a. Copyright. Famous for lots of par and subpar ports of the existing games and for really squeaky sound engine...which pulled out some good music once a year.
- While they made a decent port, Hummer's first port of Street Fighter II qualifies, with only four characters playable, and the fifth (Bison/Vega) as the final boss. As well as this, some of the characters' sizes were questionable. Also, the endings weren't the same as they were originally, but filled with loads and loads of typos. Just look.
- An updated version of this game, Master Fighter VI, added the rest of the characters (along with a clone of each), made the bosses playable and updated most of the graphics. Then again, most of the graphics were stolen from Super Fighter III, which averts this trope completely.
- Next up, Street Fighter Alpha. The problem with graphics was solved, but infinite supers and repetitititititive gameplay killed the cat.
- King of Fighters '96 falls into similar migraine. Even Word of God states that they were planning to make J.Y. Company release it with more characters, but something went wrong so it was never released per se...while the Obvious Beta build has been just stolen by Ka Sheng and redone into an actual cartirdge.
- Fatal Fury Special, Yu Yu Hakusho Final and Dragonball Z 2 were also done on the same engine, with no original gimmicks put in, leaving the gameplay being a-la Street Fighter II, big time.
- The port of first Mortal Kombat is not clearly a disaster, considering there are far worse ports on Game Boy and Sega Master System, but...it includes Sub-Zero throwing "hadoukens" instead of iceballs.
- Mortal Kombat II, now known as Mortal Kombat II Special, averts this in many aspects.
- ...but Ture Mortal Kombat 3, oddly, plays it straight and adds happy music.
- Super Mario World is indeed an Obvious Beta, but WHAT an Obvious Beta. It suffers from extremly poor controls and physics (which makes the game unbeatable at one point, without cheating (yet it's possible to skip it without cheating either)), but it features if not all, then 80% of all levels present in original.
- And, talking about Mario games...Somari! Also known as Mario in Sonic's World - The Game. Technically, it's a port, because it doesn't change the game's original idea, save for adding Mario instead of Sonic and making him able to spindash. But, as in case with Super Mario World, the controls aren't clearly responsive, plus the lack of checkpoints makes it three times harder (not five times harder, because Scrap Brain Zone just isn't here), but it's still fun to play, and a lot better than Sachen's Sonic wannabe called Jurassic Boy 2.
- Again, Somari is better than Jurassic Boy 2. The latter has less content, floaty controls and bad level design, while the former has just plain poor control, Fake Difficulty and Hell Is That Noise.
- Cony Soft is infamous for their ports being disastrous. So much that none of the games below can be considered playable. Even those outside the list.
- THEIR version of Street Fighter II. It has bleepy music, ridiculous hand-drawn graphics, AI that always spams Hadokens, and broken hit detection. There are 8 playable characters now, but, considering the above statements, it doesn't help. There is also a MAD amount of flickery.
- The Street Fighter V and VI rips are even worse.
- Mortal Kombat V Turbo and Mortal Kombat V plus Trilogy, ports of parts one and three respectively.
- THEIR version of Street Fighter II. It has bleepy music, ridiculous hand-drawn graphics, AI that always spams Hadokens, and broken hit detection. There are 8 playable characters now, but, considering the above statements, it doesn't help. There is also a MAD amount of flickery.
- Rex Soft, also known as ASDER, also known as Caltron:
- King of Fighters '95: Without any doubt, this is the FASTEST fighting game in the world. In some instances, it's TOO FAST! The roster is cropped and the graphics are abysmal.
- Boogerman II: The Final Adventure. Includes the boogerhero protagonist who moves even slower than the in-game snail enemies.
- Lethal Enforcers also received one, under a monkier of Lethal Weapon. Looking at its TAS playthrough alone says everything.
- On a side note: ASDER released Cobra Mission (which already can be confused with Mission Cobra, a NES shooter game made by the forementioned Sachen) on the same engine, complete with reloading and car chase scene. Not to mention the intro scene looks suspiciously familiar.
- Hosenkan Electronics also made ports of popular 16-bit games, and most of them fit this trope:
- Pocohontas. Engrish, unfinished, slow. Super Game's version did it better.
- Contra Spirits, also known as Super Contra 3. It's slow, some of the weapons were removed, the graphics are generally poor and level 5 from the original was replaced with a palette swap of level 3. (Which is actually level 2 in this version) On the plus side, it did at least have the bike chase level which was removed in the Game Boy version.
- Super Donkey Kong, which is actually based off Donkey Kong Land on the Game Boy. The controls are sluggish, the graphics are mediocre and the game only has 5 levels which repeat several times.
- Sachen. Oh dear god, Sachen. Gaiapolis initially was a little-known arcade game by Konami (which never got an official home port), but it seems like Sachen was lucky enough to play the machine with this game while it was alive. Despite the speed and extremely wild amount of flicker, as well as traditional bleepy Sachen music, however, it's still their best product developed, up to date.
- Most of their games were ported to Game Boy, which automatically means a porting disaster of a porting disaster No, we're not making this up.
- They also did bootlegs of Rally X (as Jovial Race), Pipe Dream (as Pipes or Pipe V), Galaga (as Huge Insect), Battle City (as Final Combat), and Buster Brothers (as Super Pang).
- Super Contra X, developed by Chengdu Tai Jing Da Dong, some members of which founded the aforementioned Waixing, and published by Micro Genius, developers/publishers of Aladdin II and Thunder Warrior.
- Pirated version of Felix the Cat for the NES. Dragon Co., the developers, also made Wait and See!(a Bugs Bunny knockoff), Tom & Jerry 3, and The Lion King 3.
- There was a NES pirate of R-Type titled Magic Dragon, developed by...Magic Corp. At one point, there's an Invisible Wall that precludes further progress.
Master System/Sega Mark III
- Shadow Dancer - Unlike the Genesis version, which was a Reformulated Game with new stages, the Master System version attempted to be a straight port of the original arcade game and unfortunately it's not a very good one. The SMS version kept the one-hit-per-life system from the arcade version, which wouldn't be bad by itself if it wasn't for the fact that it also kept the arcade version's large characters while shrinking the actual playing field, allowing enemy projectiles to appear from out of nowhere and take the player by surprise, while at the same time making boss battles hard to maneuver around, leading to many cheap deaths. Moreover, only eight of the arcade version's 15 stages (counting the boss battles) were kept, resulting in a ridiculously short game, especially compared to the SMS version of the original Shinobi. To top it off, the first-person bonus rounds are literally unbeatable due to a glitch that makes one enemy ninja invincible when he's on the same floor as another.
- Strider - U.S Gold tried to port an arcade game to a platform that wasn't meant to handle it. The conversion was handled by Tiertex, the same team that developed the equally horrible PC ports of Strider and the infamous sequel Strider Returns. Worst of all, this version was done in 1991, a year after the Genesis port.
- Thunder Blade - Another example of an arcade game that was ported to a console that couldn't handle the scaling. The end result is a bland top-down and confusing over-the-shoulder helicopter shooter.
- Vigilante - The SMS port suffers from overly precise hit detection (the player's attacks only register when the enemy is on a specific ranger) and altered controls, in which jumping is performed by pressing the punch and kick buttons simultaneously instead of Up like in the arcade version. This makes little sense, considering Vigilante doesn't even have depth movement like other beat-'em-ups such as Double Dragon or Golden Axe, making the change in controls rather unnecessary, while making jumping punches and kicks awkward to pull off since their inputs were also changed.
Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) / Super Famicom (SFC)
- Brandish - This SNES port of a Japanese PC 98 game is legendary for one of the worst control schemes in the history of gaming, one that renders the game almost unplayable for many players. The original used a mouse and keyboard control system that didn't translate that well to an SNES controller.
- Captain America and The Avengers - Flickering graphics, unresponsive controls, Mercy Invincibility given to the enemies instead of the heroes as the arcade original did and making the game much harder were only some of the problems of this port. The most glaring flaw? Despite being a cartridge edition, it still took over a minute to load the first stage!
- Doom - While SNES version is indeed a marvelous achievement, the pros are far outweighed by the cons. The graphics of the original were greatly downgraded; enemies are no longer gibbed when suffering from close-range explosions, many textures have been simplified or removed outright (and enemy sprites, leading the infamous "crab-walking" baddies that always faced you), the framerate is rather uneven, and the frames can even skip some sprite animations if more than three enemies are on-screen at close-range. The lighting was also significantly altered, making certain lit walls where secrets are hidden like any other wall, which can cause frustration if you're trying to remember which freaking panel that upgrade was put behind!! The sound effects are muffled as well, and a good portion of the levels have been excised. The only truly good part of the game is its soundtrack, which sounds much more like real instrumentation than the original MIDI music did and is rather fun to listen to.
- Mickey Mania: The Timeless Adventures of Mickey Mouse - The SNES version was missing a stage present in all other versions of the game, but more importantly (and bafflingly), despite being a cartridge-based game, it somehow had loading times longer than the CD-based versions of the game for the Sega CD and PS 1 (the Mega Drive original had no loading times at all). The controls and sound quality also suffered.
- To add to the bafflement: the missing level from the SNES version is a rotating tower in the same vein as Nebulus. Yet, it's missing on the system that actually implements 3D perspective effects in its hardware, while present on the system that required them to be emulated in software.
- Oscar - The original was a decent platformer for Amiga and MS-DOS with a catchy soundtrack. You would think that it would be improved by porting it to a more powerful system, right? Well...the play mechanics were ruined. What they did to the soundtrack is even worse. This is the DOS version running on an Adlib chip. And this is the SNES version, which was published by Titus Software.
- Pit-Fighter - This port of the Atari arcade game, was pretty much an Obvious Beta. It features stiff and unresponsive controls, a repetitive soundtrack and muffled sound effects, a game that is very hard for the wrong reasons, and The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard. There are also no continues, one life, Ty being a Game Breaker when used correctly (which, of course, is a Guide Dang It), and beating the game only gives you an ending with only text, followed by the game over screen. The Genesis port turned out far better.
- Prince of Persia 2: The Shadow and the Flame - A port of the PC game handled by Titus Software, it featured bad controls, mistimed and glitchy play mechanics, a Game Breaking Bug in the form of one specific mook that crashes the game when he dies, and screens that scroll only because the display tiles are too wide. Several story sequences were removed, and the game ends at Stage 13, with Jaffar appearing as an underwhelming Anticlimax Boss. It reeks of pure atrocity next to the amazing SNES version of the first game. The developers of this Porting Disaster went on to make Superman 64 and Carmageddon 64. Enough said.
- Street Fighter Alpha 2 - The SNES version suffers from extremely slow frame rate and jerky, nigh-unresponsive controls made this game practically unplayable. And that's to say nothing of the fact that audio quality took a SERIOUS hit due to the SNES' limited capabilities and the game has the unfortunate distinction of being one of the few SNES games to actually have loading times.
- Ultima VII - The plot was butchered as a result of Nintendo's Never Say "Die" policies of the era. The double murder that starts the main plot of the game is replaced with a double kidnapping. It goes downhill from there. Also, the entire combat system and party system that defined the original game is dispensed with altogether in favor of a Zelda-style action RPG format in which the Avatar wanders around alone whacking snakes and bats with his sword.
- Urban Strike for the SNES had the exact same graphics and sounds as the Sega Genesis original, but it slowed down immensely the moment anything other than than the player's own helicopter was on screen. In a confounding design decision, the button for jinking (=strafing) was mapped to one of the face buttons, while the SNES versions of the previous two games had it conveniently mapped to the shoulder buttons which allowed it to not interfere with firing weapons. Of course the game does not have the option to change your control layout in any way.
- Golden Axe - Although Telenet Japan produced some good games for the system, their Turbo Grafx 16 port is shamefully bad, with a mediocre CD soundtrack, horrible sound effects, poor controls, and graphics actually worse than the 8-bit Master System version.
Sega Genesis/Mega Drive, Sega CD, 32X
- The Adventures of Willy Beamish - The Sega CD version is prone to locking up, especially in the final areas, and just the loading in general kills the experience for all but the most patient.
- Dark Castle - Widely considered to be the worst game released for the Genesis. You could beat it in under a minute! There's inexplicable jumping from a hero who can't step over a tiny ledge. The items that you can get aren't needed to beat the pathetic final boss, making many of the rooms irrelevant. The controls for throwing rocks and picking up items were particularly clumsy, and represent an inept attempt at translating the mouse-and-keyboard controls of the original Mac version to a Genesis controller.
- Doom - Released for the 32X, this port was inexplicably inferior to the SNES version despite being on a superior hardware. Some of the levels were missing, and the soundtrack was butchered.
- Double Dragon II: The Revenge - Released only in Japan by Pal Soft, this is notable for being the only console port of the arcade game rather than a Reformulated Game like the NES version (the later Turbo Grafx 16 version was a remake of the NES version). Unfortunately it's not a very good one, with smaller character sprites and muddier colors, as well as numerous bugs (including a three-second pause every time a mook dies) and cheaper enemy and trap placement compared to the arcade game (especially notable with the weed trimming tractor in Mission 3, which moves in an inhuman pace compared to the arcade version). The game is virtually unplayable with the 6-button controller as well, since it causes the player to move even more slowly than with the standard 3-button controller. To top it off, this port actually came out a few months before Accolade's Genesis port of the first game in the west, which was a pretty flawed conversion by itself, but a masterpiece compared to Double Dragon II. The only saving grace Double Dragon II has is that the music from the arcade version made its way mostly intact.
- Double Dragon 3: The Rosetta Stone - A bad port of what was an already mediocre arcade sequel, the Genesis version suffers from missing animation frames (with many of the moves missing), bad hit detection (enemies don't react to the player's attacks until their health run out), different button inputs for the special moves (despite the fact that the Genesis controller had three action buttons matching the numbers of buttons in the arcade version), butchered renditions of the arcade game's music (one of the few redeeming aspects of the original) and poor character balance (especially in the final two stages, where a close-range attack from an enemy does more harm than projectiles such as arrows and fireballs). To make matters worse, they based the port on the U.S. version of the arcade game, which had the credit-feeding item shops, instead of the Japanese version, which had a character select screen and all the special moves unlocked from the start.
- Might & Magic 2 had decent graphics, especially compared to some older versions of the game. The control scheme took getting used to, but that wasn't too bad for a turn-based RPG. Unfortunately, someone messed up the computer AI, because enemies always had a predictable pattern -- they would attack the party members in order, one after the other. Doesn't sound that bad? That includes party members out of melee (who are typically there for very good reason), turning the thing from mildly annoying to unbelievably frustrating.
- Out Runners - Handled by Data East rather than Sega, this Genesis conversion suffers from pretty much the same issues as the Genesis port of Turbo Out Run (see below), along with a forced split-screen view, even in the game's 1-player mode.
- Shadow of the Beast
- Star Control - Programmed by an unlicensed subsidiary of Accolade known as Ballistic and touted as the console's first 12-Megabit cartridge. Sure, it managed to pack in some graphics and sound effects from Star Control, but oh, did it come at a price: it absolutely slows the game to a crawl, even in the relatively-simplistic Full Game map screen. Game Genie codebooks even published a code to turn off asteroids in combat to try and make it a wee bit faster. The sad thing is, some of the original SC developers were responsible for the Genesis port. They regretted having botched it in many interviews to come, especially since the Genesis hardware is similar to the Amiga.
- Starflight - A port of a PC game. The starmap is shrunken and simplified, the vast exploration of planetary maps (which didn't use much data on computers due to some processing tricks) have been replaced by a more arcadey minigame. The plot and alien interaction are also stripped down. While the Genesis port is actually larger than the PC version, incorporating a number of the improvements from Starflight 2, such as more meaningful ship upgrades and artifacts that actually do things, it did introduce an irritating bug that rendered a quest to disable the Uhlek impossible to complete.
- Strike Fighter - A botched port After Burner III for the Sega CD.
- Sword Of Sodan
- Time Killers - As bad as the original arcade was, can you believe someone actually decided that a Genesis version was feasible, four years after its arcade debut in 1992? The end result wasn't pretty, with even more crippled controls and overall horrible presentation.
- Turbo Out Run - Despite the fact that the original Out Run had a decent Genesis conversion handled by Sims, Sega for some reason handed the porting duties of the game's sequel to Tiertex, resulting in the Genesis version having worse graphics and sound quality, with many of the more elaborate background effects missing, as well as jerkier controls.
- Dark Castle - The CD-i version has even worse controls than the Genesis version, with one button being used to jump, duck or interact with objects; perhaps to compensate, it plays very sluggishly. The reason it has better graphics than the Genesis version is that the screen is severely cropped. The list of high scores gets cluttered up quickly because you can save after dying, can continue from that save with no score penalty, and not have your previous high score erased.
3DO Interactive Multiplayer
- Doom - Ported by Art Data Interactive. Small screen and low frame rate ahoy! When put next to Interplay's port of Wolfenstein 3D on the same console, this is inexcusable. The single bright spot, picked up on pretty much every review, was the awesome music, rerecorded specially for this version. Just a shame that there were so few levels that some of the original songs were not present.
- Space Ace - Released for the ill-fated Jaguar CD add-on, for some reason, the visual cues appear after the game expect you to perform the commands, killing you before you can even do anything. Considering Space Ace is a Full Motion Video game where the game consists solely of pressing buttons when ordered, the whole thing is completely unplayable.
Nintendo 64 (N64)
- Compared to the 1994 arcade original, the N64 version of Cruis'n USA had muddy graphics, a low draw distance, wonky framerate, and worst of all, the music picked a fight with a MIDI composer and lost. Look up gameplay footage of both versions on YouTube and see for yourself. Yes, the arcade original used hardware that was totally different from what was used in the N64, but the fact that Midway had two full years to get it right makes the end result inexcusable. It also suffered from Nintendo's Censorship Bureau.
- The N64 version of Starcraft features excessively clunky UI and unit handling as well as considerably worse graphics and audio. Just the thought of trying to play an RTS with the N64 controller should tell how terrible the port was. Somewhat justifiable, not all the game's content is available without the usage of the Expansion Pak (extra 4MB of memory).
- This port did however give us the extra mission Resurrection IV where Alexei Stukov is resurrected. Its story line is considered canon.
- As if Daikatana itself wasn't lousy to start with, somehow it got even WORSE after festering in development for another three months before it was finally ported to the Nintendo 64...with significantly-worse visuals, distance fog everywhere, and a blurry resolution making the game almost impossible to play in multiplayer split-screen. Oh, and you can't even use the Daikatana.
- Quake 64. Many graphic details were cut down (although the N64 could do quite a bit better), several levels were removed completely (cartridge space?), and multiplayer was limited to two players (when the N64 port of Quake II had four-player multiplayer.) And the soundtrack by Trent Reznor was replaced by generic ambience (or Jimmy Hart versions of the songs).
Playstation (PS 1)
- The PlayStation ports of Capcom's Marvel vs. Capcom series. X-Men vs. Street Fighter had the animation choppy and not to say about the eternal loadings. Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter is already a better game to play, thanks to less choppy animations and shorter loading times. Marvel vs. Capcom Clash of the Superheroes brought the loadings to a four-second limit, as well as the framerate...Sadly, NONE of the above games had the tag feature, so Capcom decided to give 'Crossover Mode' as an excuse.
- And let's not forget the Play Station 2/Xbox port of Marvel vs. Capcom 2, which suffered but to a lesser extent. Capcom has since learned their lesson, as the (primary) ports of Marvel vs. Capcom 2 and Tatsunokovs Capcom are released on the consoles that their arcade boards are based on (Dreamcast and Wii respectively), thus avoiding this Trope by the process of direct porting.
- Hidden And Dangerous for PS 1. Squad-based elements removed entirely (your teammates became, in effect, extra lives), massively cruder graphics, first-person only and general dumbing-down. Why Take2 Interactive even bothered is hard to imagine.
- The first and third Creatures games saw PC-to-PS 1 ports. In addition to compressed graphics, the two games removed one of the most critical aspects of the series: The virtual genetics. Considering that these were the primary thing that set Creatures apart from other artificial life and pet sims, the lack of these was a definite sticking point for the fans. (The lack of Game Mods for the console versions is also a problem.)
- The Play Station port of Command and Conquer made a big deal over support for a soon-to-be-released mouse, only for that support to be dropped for the final game. The result was lots of PSX owners with mice that they couldn't use (at least, not until Red Alert), and a game that some considered unplayable. Was thankfully spared the fate of the N64 port, which removed the hammy FMVs.
- Hexen makes itself look like it was made on the same engine as Doom for SNES was made. One-sided enemies, low resolution textures and SCREEN MODE itself, 15-block memory card save...and only configurable controls and cool FMV movies as an excuse.
- The PSX port of Descent is a piece of absolute garbage. Though it features the awesome soundtrack from the Macintosh version, as well as remixes of the licenses songs(by Ogre of Skinny Puppy and Type O Negative) from Descent II, it is completely ruined by blocky graphics(so you can hardly see enemies at a distance), slideshow-level framerate(making firefights in large rooms nearly unplayable), and awkward controls(no analog support unless you have the rare Analog Joystick or the original Dual Analog pad, and even then it still kind of sucks). Inexcusable even by early PSX standards.
- The Playstation port of Diablo didn't fare as well as the original PC version, largely because it took 10 blocks to save a game on a memory card.
- Tony Hawks Pro Skater 3 and 4 for the PS 1 are effectively downgraded ports of the Play Station 2 versions. 3 manages to be a good game by running smoothly and having unique features to it, but 4 is a total disaster, being slow and graphically ugly with empty levels that make you feel as if you are playing an Obvious Beta.
- When the arcade game Puzznic was ported to PS 1, the music was gone. The kicker: The music works on PS 1 emulators.
- While its not as major an example as some of the other games on this list, Final Fantasy VI on the Final Fantasy Anthology and Chrono Trigger on Final Fantasy Chronicles may qualify. Both games have added features for the Playstation version in the form of FM Vs and extra content like bestiaries and such, but their novelty is arguably cancelled out by the Loads and Loads of Loading in both games (the other games in their respecive collections, Final Fantasy V and Final Fantasy IV didn't suffer from that issue as much).
- Final Fantasy IX has an issue with the NTSC (American) to PAL (European) port. The PAL game runs more slowly since PAL has 25 fps to NTSC's 30 and the port didn't correct for this. FFIX will only give the player a certain weapon if they reach a point near the end of the game within 12 hours, and in the PAL version that clock isn't slowed like the game itself, so the task is made MUCH harder. It's believed impossible to get a "perfect game" (where you collect every item everywhere, including the speedrun-reward weapon) on the PAL version as a result.
- Not a total disaster, but of the many different versions of Snatcher, the one that looked and sounded the worst was the Playstation port. Unlike earlier ports, it wasn't made by the original developers, and they simply made some bad artistic choices.
- The Playstation port of Iguana Entertainment's South Park game was an unfinished bug-ridden disaster with inconsistent framerate, bad draw distance, poor audio quality, and even using footage of the Nintendo 64 version as FMV. The multiplayer maps aren't named like they are on the PC and Nintendo 64 versions, instead they are all just named "DM(Number)" which makes the game feel like an Obvious Beta. The game even cuts out content from the Nintendo 64 version which was on a cartridge.
- Akumajo Dracula X: Gekka no Yasokyoku - This Japan-only Saturn port of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night attempted to add some additional features by making Maria playable and adding two new areas. Unfortunately the novelty of the new features are quickly canceled out by the actual quality of the port itself: the added areas do not match the overall graphical level of the original PS version at all, the game suffers from constant slowdown when the screen is filled with enemies, most of the graphical transparency effects are lost or replaced with dithering, and the game loads before and after entering the transition rooms between areas (you know, those rooms that were there to lessen the loading times in the first place).
- Maria's inclusion (though not directly related to the port itself but worth mentioning) had its own issues, as her fighting style from Rondo of Blood was not carried over (wherein she attacked with weapons like doves or kittens). Instead she relied on martial arts attacks to get through the game, which made her bland compared to her Rondo counterpart. This was rectified in the PSP port, though lacking the two exclusive zones from the Saturn version.
- Daytona USA - The Saturn port had most of the sounds and all of the play mechanics that made the original arcade version so beloved. The graphics, though, was another story...
- Then again, it was nice to be able to scream "DAYTONAAAAAAAA" at the top of your lungs without having to be in public.
- It should be noted that the back cover blurb for the European release has the balls to call it a "pixel-perfect conversion". Later Sega did release Daytona USA: Championship Circuit Edition, which is basically "Daytona on the Saturn done right".
- Doom - The Saturn port is an absolute mess. Jerky, unresponsive controls are mapped to a decidedly questionable control scheme. There are completely random bouts of slowdown -- it sometimes happens when looking at a blank wall! The non-musical sound effects are of low quality. And there is no multiplayer, which takes half the fun out of Doom. It's been compared to the 32X port in quality, and the Saturn has more advanced specs than the 32X.
- The Dreamcast port of Giga Wing from Takumi has really long load times, even though the Dreamcast could run rings around the CPS-2 the original runs on.
- Worms World Party was for the most part a decent port from the PC version, except for the atrocious network code. The most notable of the many Game Breaking Bugs was the lobby system bug - if anyone disconnected from a lobby at any time (including leaving to another lobby before a match starts, disconnecting during a match, or skipping the post-match wrap up stats) everyone in that lobby would have to power down (not reset) their Dreamcast, or else everyone's game would be stuck forever on the lobby screen the next time it showed up.
- The Sega Smash Pack Volume 1 is infamous for its poorly done emulation. Sonic the Hedgehog had horribly mangled audio, tended to lag, and suffer from glitches absent from the original Genesis games. So did Vectorman. Every Genesis port had awful sound effects and music (Golden Axe being the worst offender), which had reviewers claiming they reached dreaded Atari 2600 levels at times. Especially sad given how many times more powerful the Dreamcast was than the Genesis. The only exceptions to the aforementioned mess were Virtua Cop 2, which ported the passable but unspectacular PC version, and Sega Swirl, a Love It or Hate It puzzle game that the earliest Dreamcast owners already had anyway.
Playstation 2 (PS 2)
- Some of the games in the Sonic the Hedgehog series suffered in their Playstation 2 ports. Both Sonic Heroes and Shadow the Hedgehog had much lower framerates than the Xbox and Gamecube versions of the same game. The latter had very little draw distance to boot, and couldn't keep up with Shadow's "Chaos Control" move. IGN gave the Play Station 2 versions of both games the lowest scores out of all the different versions.
- Psychonauts for the PS2, with controls that were apparently dipped in molasses during the port, and also suffered from framerate issues and long loading times. And woe betide you if you live in Europe and got the PAL version. Sound effects playing a random length of time after the trigger, the music loops go out of synch, the cutscene camera being in the wrong place, event triggers occurring out of order, Raz randomly getting stuck on thin air...
- Grandia II developed massive graphics slowdown between the Dreamcast and PS2, despite the latter being much more powerful hardware; the Dreamcast had massive amounts of Video RAM, which Grandia II was designed to take full advantage of. Also included were a rather distinct drop in resolution, the occasional unannounced complete game lock-up, and a lot of the characters' announcements of their moves are either muted or, worse yet, not actually synced with their moves. There was also how characters in combat would sometimes turn completely white for the duration of the battle, and AI glitches that could result in some battles never ending.
- There is also the issue in the PC version of text sometimes not showing up.
- Yu-Gi-Oh! GX: The Beginning of Destiny, a PS2 port of the first Tag Force game for the PSP, grossly suffers from this: the music skips around like a broken record, the game lags and locks up when certain cards are played, and worst of all, the one key feature in it that would've been a boon to the game -- multiplayer -- is taken out. Even the purported extras you can get by linking it up with the second Tag Force game were horribly lacking.
- The Play Station 2 port (of the X Box version) of Rainbow Six 3 took a major hit, given the hardware limitations. The levels were, according to IGN, "cropped like a butch haircut, stripped like a captive terrorist, and given a facelift like Michael Jackson".
- This seems to be the case of Arcana Heart 2 for Play Station 2. The game suffers extreme lags in both sound, game speed and graphics (on the note of that last one, the sprites are also horribly pixelated). Though some can still enjoy if they adapt to it, but since most of the audience (Japanese) have been playing on arcades, disappointments occur. The weird thing is, it works better in a Play Station 2 emulator if the computer spec is good enough.
- Vantage Master Japan has a Play Station 2 port where, every time you move the cursor, the screen pixelates heavily. It also doesn't possess any of the extra contents that were released for the PC version.
- Mushihime-sama for the PS2 doesn't properly emulate the slowdown of the arcade version, causing the game to be more difficult than intended and moments where the game suddenly slows down or speeds back up. In addition, it doesn't run at its native resolution -- playing the game in vertical mode reveals that the game's resolution has been scaled down.
- Guitar Hero III...the Play Station 2 version, which can't cope with some of the busier songs and suffers from clear lagging and skipping issues -- absolute death for a Rhythm Game. (See Knights of Cydonia and One for examples.) It's pretty clear that the Xbox 360 version was the one people intended you to buy, and everything else was hacked up out of that (the PC version is, save for some controller modifications, a direct port of the 360).
- Guitar Hero: World Tour on the Play Station 2 had very noticeable downgraded graphics and Loads and Loads of Loading. When creating a character, it can take up to 10 seconds for each piece of hair and clothing to load.
- Even worse, the Guitar Hero 5 and Band Hero Play Station 2 ports suffered from much the same problems, perhaps even worse, since they're just re-skins of World Tour's engine with the new songs and venues plopped in! In contrast, the Xbox 360/PS3/Wii versions got a new engine with tighter graphics and a refined multiplayer setup. No wonder it was the final Play Station 2 release!
- You could make an argument for Rock Band as well. Character customization and the proper Band World Tour were completely absent, as was the ability to download more songs, although to be fair, the first was in the interest of making the songs' background videos look good (by pre-rendering them, which meant the same visuals played every time for each song), the second was mainly because of the first (no character creation makes touring with a band of characters you didn't create less of a draw), and the last was somewhat made up for by releasing stand-along "Track Pack" discs that contained the basic engine and a selection of DLC songs. Ultimately, the core game played correctly, but most of the cool features were cut out. The Wii version, by contrast, may legitimately qualify, given it was a straight port of the Play Station 2 version with a handful of DLC songs added--especially with how good the subsequent port of Rock Band 2 was.
- The Play Station 2 version of Deus Ex has areas massively cut down because of the system's low RAM. These same limitations (areas are really small compared to the open ones of the original) would become apparent again for the same reasons in Deus Ex Invisible War, which was developed simultaneously for the PC and Xbox.
- The Play Station 2 version of Harvest Moon a Wonderful Life (called "Harvest Moon A Wonderful Life: Special Edition") is commonly thought of as this. The original game was a Nintendo Gamecube game so it makes sense for the weaker Play Station 2 to not play it correctly.. But it's still considerably more dull looking, and almost unbearably laggy and slow.
- The Play Station 2 port of Killer 7, originally designed for the Game Cube, is generally called out for its slightly inferior graphics, less responsive controls, occasional framerate problems, and most of all, significantly longer load times.
- The Xbox port of Unreal II the Awakening had terribly downgraded graphics, a jerky framerate, and very long loading times.
- The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind was ported quite well, gameplay and UI-wise, but the loading times are unbearably slow (not to mention the lack of user-made mods, but that's a different story.)
- Valve tried their damndest to make Half-Life 2 work on the Xbox but it is clear that the Xbox simply did not have the horsepower to make the Source engine shine. Fuzzy textures and some REALLY noticeable frame rate problems plague this port. This Troper copped out and bought The Orange Box when it went on sale just to avoid having to play the Xbox version any further.
- Myst IV: Revelation had an Xbox version with Loads and Loads of Loading. Unfortunately, the loading lag comes into effect every single time the player moves to another spot. In a game focused on exploration and puzzle solving, this made it nearly unplayable for all but the most patient players.
Nintendo Gamecube (GCN)
- The entire Gamecube version of the Mega Man Anniversary Collection takes some getting used to, since the "attack" and "fire" buttons were switched from the NES originals and there's no key config option.
- Also in the Game Cube version, the Control Stick either can't register diagonal movements or only does so when it's exactly on those diagonals. Infuriating when you're trying to leap out and grab a ladder above a spike pit...and it made the shoot-em-up segment of Wily's fortress in MM8 seem impossible until one discovers that the D-Pad works much better at the cost of being slightly awkward to reach, inverted if you use the Hori Game Boy Player controller and if you are willing to spend a bit on money on it if you don't have one.
- Not to mention that Mega Man 7's ending was cut from both the GC and Play Station 2 versions, as Atomic Planet, the developer that did the porting, couldn't get the Mode 7 effects of the original credits sequence right. Beat game. Credits. Yay.
- The PS2 may have the controls right, but it suffers from something far, far worse than the GC version: there's a very slight delay between input and execution. In a 3D game that has a slower pace, this might not be much of a problem. In a Mega Man game, however...
- The Legend of Zelda Majoras Mask was a ROM image, not a port in the traditional sense, so it played almost exactly like the original except for one tiny detail: the tendency to occasionally freeze. Not all players were particularly inconvenienced, but some...well, anyone who's played the game would know how fun it is for the game to freeze right after you've finished the Great Bay Temple.
- For some reason, turning off the rumble feature somehow made freezes less frequent.
- Majora's Mask's peculiar Save Game Limits didn't help either. The only way to be sure you could keep any of your progress after a Song of Time save was to copy your owl save file to the other save.
- There's also a HUGE amount of lag in certain areas of Clock Town.
- On the topic of Zelda, The Game Cube and Wii Classic Controller's analogue sticks are much more sensitive to movement than the N64's controller was, making manual aiming a bit of a pain in the ports of Ocarina of Time as well as Majora's Mask.
- DAMN Gerudo archery minigame. DAMN Octorok shooting gallery.
- And...GOD DAMN that paper-thin staircase run for the Megaton Hammer. DAMN IT TO HELL.
- Capcom vs. SNK 2 EO, a unique case in that the removal of the roll cancel glitch, a technique widely used in Tournament Play, is the main reason that the this version is considered inferior to the previous ones on the Play Station 2 and Dreamcast.
- The Wii version of Sam and Max: Season One has Loads and Loads of Loading and a critical Game Breaking Bug -- if your cursor hits the lower-right edge of the screen, it sticks.
- And the textures have been hideously compressed, to the extent that a lot of text is indecipherable, ruining quite a few background gags.
- What really puts this into Porting Disaster territory is that the game had a tendency to freeze. Fortunately the game has autosave.
- Also in Season Two the entire video during the episode five credits is absent with still pictures from said video in its place.
- The cut scenes are also somewhat choppy in both seasons, but at least there isn't any dialogue that does weird jumps or cuts in season two, unlike its season one predecessor (luckily, the games still manage to be awesome anyway).
- Far Cry Vengeance was a port/compilation of the Far Cry Instincts series. It's understandable for a 360-to-Wii port to not look as good on the Wii, although there are ways to lessen the drop in quality. It's not so understandable for the game to look barely better than Jurassic Park: Trespasser, when the original Far Cry games were known for Scenery Porn out the wazoo. Or how about the excellent AI of the originals, which becomes so idiotic that it doesn't notice when someone five feet away gets killed? Or the random content cuts? This wouldn't pass muster on the N64; on the Wii, it feels like a slap in the face.
- The Wii port of Sega Superstars Tennis suffers from god-awful controls (yes, you can choose from either the Wii remote on its own, the Wii remote held on its side, or Wii remote + Nunchuk, but no matter what, all of these control schemes play like garbage). With controls like that, even Tails can be a challenge to beat!
- Three of Humongous Entertainment's games from their Junior Adventure series were ported by Mistic Software in 2009. Now, the games were entirely unchanged, which was cited as a whole separate problem by critics, but the kicker was that Mistic used ScummVM, a GPL-licensed emulator for old point-and-click games. For those not aware, the GPL requires that people who use the covered source code in their own products must also license those products under the GPL, and also provide the source code. Mistic was contacted about this, and they were willing to come into compliance with the GPL. Nintendo would not allow this, because in order to be fully GPL compliant they would have had to release the Nintendo-proprietary and highly confidential development SDK. Mistic was forced to settle; the games were pulled from the shelves and are no longer available.
- The Wii port of Okami suffered from inferior visual quality with lack of paper filter emphasizing the sumi-e artstyle, finicky waggle based motion controls, combat moves that would not register such as fleetfoot, and to top if off it lacked the credits as well as the epilogue, but that was rectified in the Japanese release.
- Not to mention the fact that Capcom apparently doesn't even keep their own art assets handy as the cover art of the box was taken from IGN (complete with the IGN watermark still visible). They apologized and distributed new cover inserts for all affected parties.
- Some people tend to think this of the about Otomedius's (both games) 360 ports (just look at IGN's and Hardcore Gaming 101's reviews of the games), however most people do enjoy it alot, so the whole thing is subverted.
- The Xbox360 port of Supreme Commander suffered from stuttering graphics, framerates down to 1 digit when a nuke went off, and lockups whenever you receive a transmission. Chris Taylor admitted the crappiness of the port and promised that Supreme Commander 2 will be better.
- At the time of release, only the very most powerful PCs could handle it at full detail on the largest maps, and even two years later most casual gamers won't get good performance on top settings. A console not being able to handle it was basically a forgone conclusion. The sequel has slightly simpler models and textures to make it more accessible, cue the fanboy rage.
- The Xbox360 port of DoDonPachi: DaiOuJou BLACK Label, in addition to long load times(even when installed to the hard drive) is rather buggy. One particularly Egregious error is when the screen is in Tate mode, all the menus will still be displayed as if it was still in Yoko mode so you have to either tilt your monitor or your head to navigate the menus.
- It Got Worse. The likely reason for all these things? Aqua Systems stole the source code from the PS2 version.
- A patch that corrected the loading times was finally released...two years later...and by then, it was out of print. So much for waiting for a patch before buying it!
- When using an Xbox 360, you can download (official) emulators to play (selected) Xbox 1 games. While some of these work fine, others don't translate so well. In Silent Hill 2 on the 360, parts of the graphics would randomly disappear and after you die in a certain area the game refuses to function unless you delete all of your save files. Sadly, this isn't a one-time case.
- Trying to play your Xbox games on the 360 is an iffy proposition for other games too. When played on the 360, Forza Motorsport demonstrates glitches not found when playing it on an original Xbox. The "official" "emulation" of Silent Hill 2 had problems with the sound effects becoming muted too, in addition to horrible graphical glitches that rendered many textures flat like porcelain. A comprehensive overview of the numerous glitches is contained in this feature from the-horror.com.
- In the Psychonauts port, Raz's outfit randomly turns blue when you press Start and has to be fixed by turning the game on and off.
- The Psychonauts issue is more of an emulation error than a porting one; the exact same glitch happens when playing the Xbox version in your 360.
- Similar to the Psychonauts example, there's Grand Theft Auto San Andreas. Whether you're playing it through the emulator or on a disc, random cutscenes will mess up, and the sound and voices will play out-of-sync with the action. Which is highly annoying, especially during some of the more dramatic scenes.
- R-Type Dimensions lacks customizable controls; A is to shoot, B is to shoot rapid-fire shots, and X is to fire your Force Pod. Which means if you're playing on any controller with a tilted ABXY diamond or an ABXY setup that isn't diamond-shaped at all...
- Dark Messiah was not too bad when it first came out for the PC. The 360 release is...something else entirely. The graphics are terrible, and despite trying to be an RPG, the game flagrantly removes pretty much every game mechanic associated with the RPG genre to make a linear first-person game. It was an attempt to completely remake the game as something more console-friendly, as Ubisoft had previously done with Far Cry...but while Farcry Instincts was lauded for its unique direction and all-around quality, Dark Messiah of Might & Magic: Elements didn't turn out quite as well.
- The Xbox Live Arcade port of Guwange runs in letterboxed 16:9 if you are using any resolution that doesn't have a 16:9 aspect ratio (i.e. a standard-ratio CRT screen), on top of the pillarboxing used to fit a vertical screen onto a horizontally-oriented monitor. So unless you have a huge widescreen TV or are willing to turn your screen 90 degrees, prepare to play in a VERY small screen.
- The Xbox Live Arcade port of Space Invaders Extreme has no stage mode, no "no continues" mode (rankings are instead done through Arcade Mode and accept scores achieved with continues), and the game stretches to fill the entire screen, which means if you're playing on anything other than a 16:9 screen the game will look stretched.
- Duke Nukem Forever. Inconstant framerate, constant screen-tearing, shadows are not well implemented, excruciantigly long loading times. One could argue the porting was made in little time, but given the game's dated visuals and the fact the PlayStation 3 version has no such issues (which also makes it more enjoyable), it's not an excuse.
- Luckily, it seems like the new DLC, The Doctor Who Cloned Me, also included a patch that has fixed all these issues. Now the blood decals don't flicker, the textures load fully, the framerate drops are extremely rare etc. Now the game is much more enjoyable, especially since the new DLC more or less won back the crowd for the people who played it.
- The 360 port of the PC adaptation of Games Workshop's Blood Bowl was pretty much complete in every detail except for one small omission- online leagues. Removing the online multiplayer leagues from Blood Bowl is about on equivalent to removing multiplayer from a fighting game, basically gutting the main drawcard of the entire game. The result was best summarized in Angry Joe's review of the game where he was mostly complimentary towards the game in general for most of the review until he got around to mentioning the omission of multiplayer leagues, where his attitude suddenly turned violently nasty. He ended up giving the 360 version a score of 2/10 almost solely for this reason- yeah it was THAT big of an omission.
Playstation 3 (PS 3)
- The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim has had some serious lag issues on the PlayStation 3 version. About halfway through the game, many players have hit lag that slows the game down so much, it becomes unplayable. Especially bad because "halfway through" for this game could mean over fifty hours of playtime. Bethesda, the developer of Skyrim, denied the problem entirely at first, then told players how to reduce the lag, but not eliminate it. There have since been several patches attempting to fix the problem, but Your Mileage May Vary on whether or not the problems have been fixed.
- The Orange Box was vastly inferior on the PlayStation 3. Valve did not develop it (for certain reasons, which are no longer true as of Portal 2); it was done by an Electronic Arts internal studio.
- This was probably most noticeable in Team Fortress 2. The game was a playground for griefing as bugs that had been fixed for nearly a year in the PC/360 version went unpatched. Every other game had an Engineer who knew the sky/underground sentry glitch.
- Turning Point: Fall of Liberty wasn't very good on any system, but the bomb-wiring mini-game in the PS3 version tells you to work by the colors of the buttons...or, rather, the colors of the corresponding Xbox buttons.
- Bayonetta was originally developed for the Xbox 360 with Sega doing the PlayStation 3 port. Despite the noticeable decrease in graphic's quality, the game is so unbelievably-slow it causes truly atrocious frame-rate drops and you'll suffer from Loads and Loads of Loading even when pressing the pause button (thankfully, the loading times were fixed by a patch from Sony, which allows players to install the game to the internal hard-drive).
- The PlayStation 3 version of Splinter Cell: Double Agent suffers from framerate and slowdown issues starting at the opening cutscene. This is pathetic, since this system is more powerful than the Xbox360. Are Blu Rays that bad?
- The next Splinter Cell went Xbox-exclusive. Presumably, Ubisoft Just Didn't Care.
- And when Ubisoft sold an Updated Rerelease of the first three games for the PlayStation 3, they forgot fundamental things like the option to invert look controls - which had been in almost every prior release of the same games. (After initially claiming that inverted controls were not an industry standard - and following a lengthy outcry from frustrated customers - Ubisoft patched it. Several months later.)
- Bejeweled 2 suffered from but one gripe, albeit a rather major one: one cannot use a USB mouse to play it. Yes, it's a PC-to-console port and most people will not expect to use a mouse on the PlayStation 3, but the PlayStation 3 has USB mouse support even within the XMB.
- And now, the problem seems to be back with Plants vs. Zombies. It seems that Sony Online Entertainment, the body responsible for the port, is not interested in letting the games be played in a much simpler manner.
- Take 2 has apologized for making the PlayStation 3 version of Mafia II the least feature rich version, compared to the PC (which is the fullest experience) and Xbox 360 versions.
- The Silent Hill HD Collection, while arguably worse than the non-HD original games as it stands, really got hit hard on the PlayStation 3. Rampant slowdown throughout the game, the voices falling out of synch with the characters' lips, and various other little bugs. Konami has started patching the game in an attempt to bring it closer to the more stable 360 version.
- An old Visual Novel called Exodus Guilty Neos, which has been previously released on Play Station and Saturn, was ported to DVD players not so long ago...and, apart from having fully voiced characters this time around, it throws all the interactivity it originally had out of the wall, so now, you have to wait till the end of any of these 30-minute chapters just in order to pick a decision. Side note: no alternate endings, three DVDs with 6 hours of video on each. While the originals ran on a single CD and had additional endings to run on. With such level of interaction, no one shall call it a game.
- Also a DVD player example. After Digital Leisure did an overall good job on porting first two parts of that series with Dirk the Daring, they suddenly decided to port Dragon's Lair 3D: Return to the Lair as well. As the result of double Genre Shift (interactive movie -> third-person arcade -> interactive movie or something that resembles it), as well as completely non-cinematic camera angles during the gameplay and the badly decreased "clicks per minute" count (mainly caused by the fact that in the original DL3D, not everything was trying to kill you), Dragon's Lair III is probably what you should ignore just to buy their Dragon's Lair Trilogy alone. Even Tomb Raider did better when Angel of Darkness hit the DVD players, no matter if TR fans loved it or not..
Disastrous ports to hand-held consoles:
Game Boy (GB, GBC)
- Contra: The Alien Wars - A GB port of the SNES game, lacking not only the Roman numeral "III" from the title, bur also the dual-wielding weapon system (admittedly due to the lack of buttons on the Game Boy), several sub-bosses (including the one-eyed brain at the end), and the entire motorcycle stage. Although, it's a bit unfair to expect a Game Boy port of an SNES game to live up to the original, but it doesn't excuse the fact that the graphics, sound quality and play mechanics are worse than Operation C (the previous Contra game released for the Game Boy), with much slower playing speed as well.
- Crystalis - The GBC port of the NES cult classic is much worse than the original -- the perfectly-fitting music was replaced, the controls were messed up, and then the game's frame-rate problems, plot changes, and other flaws cause most who have played the original to either deny its existence or wish the rating system went down to zero.
- Made even worse by an attempt to dumb-down the game. The main character wields four elemental swords, which he needs to switch between as certain creatures have immunity to certain elements. For example, poison bugs are immune by the wind sword. Apparently they didn't like the constant need to change swords, so instead they made it so all swords could hurt any creature, it's just that the wrong element did less damage. There is no audible way of telling if you're dealing partial damage, so it actually makes the game harder, since you don't know if you're using the right sword or not.
- Double Dragon 3: The Rosetta Stone - Unlike the first two GB versions developed by Technos, the third GB game was handled by Sales Curve and rather than being a Reformulated Game like the GB version of the original (or a Dolled-Up Installment like the second), it's a straight port of the arcade version and a pretty awful one at that. The player only has three moves (the basic punch and kick and a jump kick, no consecutive attacks or grappling moves like in the previous GB games) and the game is pretty much impossible to complete in one life due to poor hit detection and the fact that the enemies have Mercy Invincibility when they get up after a fall. The player can purchase the hurricane kick and a sword from item shops like in the arcade version (only with in-game currency instead of credits) and they even managed to botch that up (the sword cannot be carried over to another stage, making it a pointless item, the hurricane kick is about as effective as the standard jump kick and all the extra playable characters are missing). To top it off, the graphics are worse than the first two games, with bland character designs and stiff animation, only one sound effect for everything and the music is annoyingly repetitive (with the same three tunes played throughout the entire game).
- Galaga: Destination Earth - Rather than try and port the complex 3D environments of the PC version, Pipe Dream Interactive decided to make the Game Boy Color version play more like the original. The only problem is...they didn't quite do it right. There was very little skill involved, as once you got your second ship, you could pretty much blindly fire forward and clear wave after wave, even without the double-damage power-up. However, if the enemies got a shot off, there was roughly a 50% chance it would hit you. Even if you were on the other side of the playing field. In addition to a lack of music and only three settings, not to mention a nigh-useless password feature, it was simply a trainwreck of a port.
- Marble Madness - The GB version flings you back to the second stage if you beat the fifth stage, either because of a programming error or because the final stage doesn't even exist in this port. Have fun playing through the middle four stages until you run out of time or batteries, whichever comes first.
- Populous - The GB version has almost-indecipherable graphics that splits up on three different screens (you had to switch) what you see in the PC/SNES version on one screen.
- Prince of Persia - The GB version was one of the worst ports of the game. Here's a preview -- yes, that is actually what the game sounds like. (And the GBC version released seven years later was nearly as bad!)
- Toy Story - This was a basic linear platformer game available at the time on SNES, Sega Genesis, PC, and Game Boy. The first three shared the same layout (with various design and/or level changes) and had generally-pleasant graphics, a varied and decent soundtrack, and challenging (but not unbeatable) stages. The Game Boy version, however:
- Was frustratingly slow (The Angry Video Game Nerd would probably say that Woody "moves like he's on the Goddamn moon!").
- Had grating music (the soundtrack comprised a total of three tunes, all really high-pitched and squealy -- even for Game Boy -- that you get sick of within the first ten minutes).
- Had awkward hit detection (particularly when trying to use Woody's pull-string as a weapon or a grappling hook).
- Had messy, poorly-blended graphics (with the original Game Boy's unlit green screen, game play was all the more aggravating due to the complex textures and sprite designs; almost like they tried to give them too much detail rather than adapt them to Game Boy standards).
- Removed many levels, including all that were outside the "platformer" realm (the overhead racing levels, 3-D maze, etc.) and the boss fights (Nightmare Buzz, regular Buzz Lightyear, and the notorious Claw), thus taking away much of the fun element from the other ports.
- Was really, really, really friggin' slow.
- Smash TV - The blood is changed to generic explosions, most of the characters have red skin, the graphics are messy and unprofessional even for a Master System game, the Game Gear version has choppy framerate and clunky controls, in the Master System version the enemies move way to fast, the enemies spawn a few spaces in front of a door instead of coming out of a door, and in the Game Gear version the first boss is almost impossible to beat due to the choppy way he moves around.
- Sonic Spinball - Although the levels are remarkably similar compared to other Sonic the Hedgehog ports (not necessarily by its own merits), whatever physics existed in the Genesis version were thrown completely out the window. Worse is the platforming engine, in which Sonic has an innate tendency to get himself stuck.
- Another concern of the Master System and Game Gear ports was aspect ratio. When the screens were lined up, the width was focused on, rather than the height, resolved by making the player unable to see what would normally be the very top of the screen. This isn't normally a problem until the screen locks; an example is the Antlion boss of the Underground Zone in Sonic 2 where it gets very difficult to judge where the balls will bounce when you can't see when they peak.
Game Boy Advance (GBA)
- Sonic The Hedgehog Genesis for GBA. Among other issues, such as music which sounded like a cheap MIDI version of the original (already synthesized!) music in the Genesis version and horrible physics, the most notable problem was frequent slowdown...in a Sonic game...ported to a system that's actually more powerful than the original.
- Let's not forget that the porters apparently felt it proper to rewrite the physics engine from the ground up, leading to hilarious glitches ensuing. A good Musical Slapstick Montage of some blatant glitches is here.
- And to add further insult to injury, the same person behind the "Knuckles in Sonic 1" ROM hack made a much, much, MUCH superior homebrew GBA port of Sonic The Hedgehog, proving that whoever made Sonic the Hedgehog Genesis just didn't care. Between this fiasco and the abomination known as Sonic the Hedgehog 2006, Sonic's 15th birthday was completely squandered.
- The homebrew port only covers the first Zone. Still, when you consider that one person did all the work, imagine if the whole porting team was up to his level of competence -- you'd have the definitive handheld retro Sonic experience.
- And worse yet, the Sonic port for the iPod Classic -- a platform that's hardly associated with action games -- was more accurate than the GBA version, having been actually recompiled from the original code.
- The GBA port of Earthworm Jim was an absolute trainwreck. A huge chunk of sprite animations are cut from the game, the physics are broken, the ray gun and helicopter head sound effects are replaced with muffled sounding ones, the music sounds like distorted versions of the SNES version's music, the A button is used as the fire button and B is the jump button and it is impossible to change, the graphics are messy, and the remaining sound effects from the original are distorted and their pitch is changed.
- The GBA port of its sequel, Earthworm Jim 2 was just as bad if not worse. It has most of the same problems and very few things were fixed from the previous port and even has its own fair share of problems. The graphics are slightly improved from the previous port but many sprite animations are still cut out of the game. The 3D-ish floor in the level Puppy Love is glitched up, and the music still sounds like distorted versions of the SNES version's music but with parts of the songs cut out. This port is widely known for its broken password system that literally loads a game where you instantly die for no reason. Idiot Programming at its finest.
- Street Fighter Alpha 3...Upper. You get three new characters from Capcom vs. SNK 2 in exchange for butchered sounds and stages, as well as endings. Apparently it wasn't the developer's fault, however, since Capcom insisted on them using a 8 MB cart for whatever ridiculous reason, while 16 and 32 MB carts were available. They did try their best to at least fit all the play mechanics in those eight megabytes, as well as replacing World Tour with a set of options that more or less did the same thing and didn't require you to beat the mode with every single character that you wanted to be able to utilize them.
- Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo on the Game Boy Advance occasionally suffers from a nasty game-freezing glitch, file erasure, or both at the same time. In case you're wondering, the porting was done by the aforementioned Atomic Planet.
- The GBA port of Marble Madness in the Klax/Marble Madness pack is a lazy mess and literally half the game it used to be. The controls are unpolished, the marble teleports to the other end of the chute (instead of rolling down it), and the wave in Stage 3 is absent. The worst feature is that you get Game Over at the end of Stage 3. There's no excuse for this, considering that ports for older systems managed to contain the whole game. At least the Klax port is good, despite repeating after level 3.
- The GBA port of the classic Bubble Bobble (Old and New (GBA)) was an utter disaster -- you could either look at a blurry or squished-down view of the whole level, or not see part of the level at all. The controls were also off. If that wasn't bad enough, the soundtrack was a terrible, tinny remix of the beloved original.
- A result of the real-life case of No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup (according to this). Deaths and squishing yourself with bubbles did not match the arcade implementations. In the port, when you die, you still fall down, but you freeze in midair when you start spinning out upon death instead of just before you poof away into magic dust. Also, upon death, the standing-not-dead sprite frame is used, followed by the sitting-down-dead sprite frame only when your character spins out. And they called the second player Bobblen, not Bobblun as it should be.
- A majority of the handheld ports of Mortal Kombat are generally considered poor, but there is no divided opinion in the fact that the GBA port of Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 (named Mortal Kombat Advance) was a trainwreck of a port. Poorly-done sprites, poorly-ported music, AI that hovered between being stupidly easy or stupidly hard (especially Scorpion, who can easily ruin your game as early as being the first opponent), and various other screwups make this port a complete and utter mess. It was the first game in Electronic Gaming Monthly to receive a total 0 rating.
- And not a surprise, since Midway farmed this job out to a third party, with no involvement from Ed Boon's MK team, with the goal of churning out the game in four months to make a quick buck on the license. With business practices like that, it's a wonder Midway isn't out of busine--oh, wait.
- However, a few MK ports of today have avoided this. The GBA ports (yes, there were more than one) of Mortal Kombat Deadly Alliance were considered So Okay It's Average at least (the second port added Sektor and Noob Saibot, who weren't in the console game at all as well as the Mortal Kombat Mythologies Sub Zero character Sareena (her first fighting game appearance), who would only appear on consoles in Mortal Kombat Armageddon some time later); the PSP port of Mortal Kombat Deception is relatively well done; and the DS port of Ultimate 3 outstrips the GBA predecessor so hard that Netherrealm Studios recommissioned its porter, Other Ocean, for the job of porting the first three games as the Xbox Live Arcade/Playstation Network Mortal Kombat Arcade Kollection.
- The Game Boy Advance port of R-Type III. Poor collision detection, missing features, and a broken and illogical scoring system are the apparent result of the developers not having access to the original source code. They also replaced excellent music with terrible music.
- The GBA port of Blizzard's Rock 'N Roll Racing had two noticable issues: Firstly, the BGMs have been abridged. Secondly, it overcompensated for the GBA's lack of backlight so much that palette swap animations in some screens seem uniform and no longer animated (this is most noticable car upgrade screen with a maxxed out car).
- Contra Advance: The Alien Wars EX, while technically better than the first Game Boy version, is still a butchering of the original SNES game. Not only does it still lack the dual-wielding weapon system (even though the player character still carries a second rifle on his back), it also removes the mega bomb power-up that was previously kept in the original Game Boy version (which were activated in that version by pressing Select). The character sprites and backgrounds are lifted straight from the SNES version, but alot of the larger bosses (like the tortoise and the skeleton robot) were squished to fit into the smaller screen resolution of the GBA, yet the player character's sprite was left unchanged. Because of this, a lot of the larger enemies are harder to avoid than they were in the original SNES version due to the lack of space to maneuver. While the motorcycle stage is kept this time, along with all the bosses missing from the previous Game Boy version, the two overhead Mode 7 stages were replaced with two side-scrolling stages ported over from Contra: Hard Corps. However, the replacement stages were designed with the play mechanics of Contra: Hard Corps in mind, which featured a slide move that was not carried over to the GBA port, an ability that was almost necessary to avoid certain attacks used by the bosses in these new stages.
- The Phantasy Star Collection for the GBA released by THQ would crash after about two minutes of play at most...at worst, it could crash on the game select screen. It was possible to progress in each game - if the player obsessively saved approximately every 15 seconds.
- Medal of Honor: Underground. While the Play Station original was an excellent World War II first-person shooter, the GBA version is...not. As you can see in this video, there are no redeeming factors to this game. The graphics look awful, and can best be described as the visual equivalent of baby vomit; horrendously low-resolution textures, terrible framerate, and the character sprites blend into the textures, so there's nearly no way to know if anyone is in front of you. The controls would be fine if there weren't such a horrific disconnect between command and action. Sometimes, your actions aren't even recorded. The sound is equally terrible, with heavily-distorted voice samples and a soundtrack that sounds like an orchestra of farts. The FMV segments of the PS One game are removed and replaced with boring-ass still-frame illustrations with text beneath them. And the AI is ridiculously stupid; in one mission you have to stay within four feet of your brother lest he lose track of where the hell he is and just stand around like a dumbass.
- Tekken Advance. This atrocity was farted out by Namco to try and capitalize on the handheld craze. The sprites were 3D structures ripped from Tekken 3, shrunken and distorted to accommodate the GBA (the same can be said of the entire game, in fact). While the screens and promo shots looked decent, the actual game was so hastily stripped down that the gameplay was more reminiscent of the crappy NES bootleg ports than any respectable GBA title.
Sony Playstation Portable (PSP)
- Puzzle Quest on the PSP was a decent port overall (like the DS version), but it's the only one with a major bug: the companion system doesn't work.
- The iPhone version is full of random graphical glitches and a couple of (since fixed) Game Breaking Bugs (Random deletion of saved heroes and locking out unfinished missions.)
- Puzzle Quest is also one of the extremely few PSP games which will occasionally crash to the desktop. (YouTube has examples.)
- The PSP remake of Final Fantasy Tactics suffers from slowdown of something like 50% (that's half-speed animation) whenever a three-dimensional effect is processed. This renders almost anything except basic attacks twice as slow as the PSX version. While the heavy script rewrite from the original (and from the Japanese version) is a debatable aesthetic issue, the slowdown makes long missions nearly unplayable.
- The slowdown is especially infuriating because it's a PS1 game ported to a hardware as powerful as the PS2!
- You can now download the original PS 1 game from the PSN store and play it on your PSP, at full speed. (And for less than half the price of the PSP version, no less!) They Just Didn't Care. The only reason to play War Of The Lions now is the somewhat-improved translation, if you can wait around for it.
- The remake is headed to the iPhone, which is nearly as powerful as the PSP, so perhaps there's some hope for salvation...
- The slowdown isn't a 'bug' it's a 'feature'. They mucked with the display times of the frames of animation for certain attacks to reduce general slowdown during said attacks but ended up making the general case infuriating slow to fix a specific case problem. As another poster mentioned the PSONE version runs fine on the PSP.
- Eventually fixed with a fan patch that removes the slowdown when the game is run through custom firmware. Now why Square-Enix couldn't be bothered to fix it, either before release or through an official patch...
- The PSP port of Umihara Kawase Shun -- originally a PS1 game -- is riddled with bugs and features a very screwy physics engine. This led Japanese fans to boycott the port. Seriously. The DS port is pretty much perfect, with accurate adaptations of both the Super Famicom and PS1 originals and even wireless support for sharing replays...in spite of the DS being technically weaker than the PSP.
- The PSP port of Spectral Souls is a very literally direct port of a Play Station 2 title: done so without re-optimizing the game for the PSP's processor. Thus the PSP is trying to play a Play Station 2 game and the end result is Loads and Loads of Loading for even the most simple of things: including reading dialogue!
- The PSP port of Angry Birds has random framerate slowdowns and glitchy controls, and considering it's based on an iPhone game, it really shows how rushed the port was.
- Star Wars Battlefront 2 is a relatively tame example. All its missing is the Rise of the Empire campaign and a handful of maps.
Nintendo DS (NDS)
- The Nintendo DS version of Myst was seriously hampered by a couple issues. First, the DS' screen resolution is much lower than that of a PC; even with the "magnify" feature added to the DS port, some of the text within certain scenes is still barely readable. Even worse, though, the PC version used context-sensitive mouse cursors to point out when the mouse was over a hot spot; the DS has no equivalent to this at all, which led to aimless screen-tapping to try to figure out what to do. In a game like Myst, that's going to happen quite a bit -- it's not that straightforward with AltTags...and there are Game Breaking Bugs in the port.
- The DS port of the classic Bubble Bobble (Revolution (DS)' Classic Mode) was an utter disaster -- it had the exact same problems as the GBA port.
- Rayman DS was ported with the original PC keyboard controls of Rayman 2. The DS doesn't have anything even vaguely resembling a keyboard. Some people went out and bought a joypad to eliminate the control problem, which probably doubled the size of the set-up.
- Turned Up to Eleven in the iOS port; the controls are very unbearable, and it's hard to react to close call situations. This isn't to mention you cannot lock on to enemies in a game that relies heavily on combat. The musical score was also screwed up, as they pause a second before looping, and music that's not even supposed to loop loops anyway! It also has a severe problem where some tracks were displaced, such as the "rescue babies from the mines" (which now plays the menu theme rather than the cheery freedom-ish theme) and one track that plays way too often, particularly when you dance with a teensy and when there's supposed to be dead silence.
- The port of The Settlers II for the Nintendo DS. The game stores data the whole time while you're playing until there is no space and the game would crash. Scrolling was slow and made an annoying noise, the game would lag and the button to zoom in and out would often disappear due to the data overload. One chapter also has a glitch that deletes your saves when you choose it. Actually the developers recommend you to use said glitch in case the zoom button disappears. What made matters worse is that it was released a few months after Anno 1503 which showed that you can successfully port RTS games to the DS.
- Remember Legend of Kay? You know the Play Station 2 game with Ninja Gaiden-esque fighting, racing levels, a solid plot and a soundtrack by Virt? The DS port rips all of that out for random spider jumping, a complete butchering of the script, crappy MIDI files and the complete elimination of the battle system that made the game fun to play in the first place.
- The Il-2 Sturmovik series is considered one of the best PC flight sims available. The Birds of Prey title for consoles is also a solid game. On the DS, however, the controls are sluggish and the D-pad is ill-suited for controlling a plane in three dimensions. some stages are Unwinnable because the enemies can't be damaged, and the campaigns are just a series of missions that can be played in any order the player wants (which is just as well, considering the last flaw).
- A significant amount of the Game.com's library was made up of horribly done ports of popular titles on other systems. The main examples:
- Sonic Jam was practically in In Name Only version of the Saturn original. There was nothing from the original Sonic The Hedgehog, and only two levels each from the other three Genesis titles. On top of that, the graphics were barely adequate, the music sounded like a drunk guy playing a keyboard for the first time, and Sonic handled more like an actual hedgehog than his speedy self.
- The best thing you can say about Mortal Kombat Trilogy is that it wasn't too much worse than the Game Boy version of Mortal Kombat 3. There were more characters and the graphics were slightly more detailed, but the game was a total jerkfest, making it even more annoying to play.
- Duke Nukem 3D was actually a pretty admirable effort in many ways, and easily the most graphically advanced title on the system. Unfortunately, the Game.com wasn't anywhere near powerful enough to handle the Duke. Consequently the game got turned into a Rail Shooter, and the whole thing became one Luck-Based Mission due to the crappy controls and unbelievably slow framerate.
- Sonic N for the Nokia N-Gage was a fairly faithful port of the original Sonic Advance in many ways, but still fell down badly compared to its predecessor. This was partly due to the N-Gage simply being poorly suited to running this type of game (the vertical aspect ratio of the screen and the weird control layout being the major issues), but the game was also an Obvious Beta on top of that. In addition to the whole game crashing at times, Sonic could actually run off the edge of the screen, often resulting in him dying one way or another.
- The original release of the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis versions of Sonic 1 and Sonic 2 on the iPhone. The original iPhone's hardware may well have been plodding for a modern smartphone, but it still had a 400MHz CPU and 128MB of RAM versus the Megadrive's 7.6MHz CPU and 64KB of RAM. Yet both Sonic 1 and Sonic 2 were awful, stuttery messes compared to the originals despite running on vastly superior hardware. (Supposedly this was because Sega dropped barely modified ROMs of the original games into an incredibly inefficient and badly ported/optimized emulator - various third party/jailbroken solutions have produced significantly better results.)
- The port of the original Mega Man X on iOS. The sprites have been redrawn at a higher resolution, which sounds good, except that instead of actually hiring decent artists to redraw the sprites, like they did with Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix, most of the sprites look like Capcom just ran the SNES sprites through some kind of graphical filter software. No new colors or detail have been added, making quite a few of the sprites look worse than the SNES version. Some of the animations have lost frames, looking choppier than the original, some of the music is lost, and the visually interesting graphical font used in the SNES version is replaced with a boring generic font. The levels don't scroll smoothly anymore, rather being divided into discrete sections with loading between them. How an almost 20 year old game can be ported to a platform with immensely superior hardware and end up running worse is just mind-boggling.
Disastrous ports to PC operating systems:
Commodore 64 (C64)
- The C64 port of Hard Drivin', a game that was not designed for the hardware it was being ported to, is often noted as the worst port of the game in existence. It moves at a snail's pace in both framerate and actual driving speed, and the control often had you skidding across the road during even the slightest turns. The incredibly butchered physics engine, the very short draw distance, and the relatively inaccurate drawing scheme and monochrome nature of the 3D engine itself didn't help matters.
- Taito's original The Legend of Kage suffered massive graphical and audio downgrades when it was ported from the arcade to many home consoles and computers. The Commodore 64 version is largely considered the worst port out of them all.
- The Commodore 64 tape version of R-Type (and probably a number of other tape versions) had a serious problem: even if you only survived for a minute, you still had to rewind the tape and wait five minutes for the game to reload.
- The Commodore 64 actually got two ports of the Arcade version of Bionic Commando -- one by Capcom USA and one by Software Creations UK. The Software Creations version is a glorious aversion of this Trope, pretty much porting the game as well as the C64 would allow, and sporting a superb remix of the soundtrack by Tim Follin. The Capcom version is astoundingly half-assed. There's only one music track, much blockier graphics, jerkier scrolling, sluggish movement, and absolutely no swing physics.
- Similar to Bionic Commando, there were two ports of Double Dragon -- one by Ocean and one by Melbourne House -- but neither is really a great success. The Melbourne House version, which was first, had limited attack movements and a blank line across the midsection of the characters in order to accommodate the number of characters on screen. The later Ocean version had improved graphics...at the expense of dropping the two-player option in Double Dragon.
- The C64 had a port of Street Fighter II. The characthers became tiny sprites that were unrecognizable. 5 minute loads to move on to the next stage. And instead of 3 punch and 3 kick buttons it was played with a joystick which only had one button.
- Because the C64 was so immensely popular, Origin kept porting their Ultima games to the system even after the hardware couldn't handle them anymore. Ultima V was a complete port that lacked only music, but Ultima VI was butchered horribly as it was designed for the much more powerful computers then available.
- The C64 version of Jet Set Willy 2 (originally a ZX Spectrum game) expanded the levels to fit the C64's higher resolution, making some of them impossible.
- Sqij! was originally an undistinguished shoot 'em up written for the Commodore 64. The ZX Spectrum version is far, far worse. It starts by turning on the Caps Lock and then only checking for lower-case letters. It runs far slower than the Commodore version because it's mostly written in BASIC. The overall impression is that it was written by someone whose acquaintance with the original game extended to having it described to them over a bad telephone line.
- The port of the arcade game Salamander was a mess: the majority of the screen was taken up with the HUD. The gameplay was slow -- you don't get a speed up untill half-way into the first level, and need it well before then. There are one or two bugs that make one of the boss battles a Luck-Based Mission. Only the first stage has an actual lay-out; the rest of them just have the odd enemy floating across the screen.
- If you thought it couldn't get any worse than the PC port of Street Fighter II, you were wrong; there was also a ZX Spectrum version. Saying that the game takes forever to load is a gross underestimation. Nobody would ever know why didn't they put this on a disc as well, not only on a tape.
- Castle Master. No sound. Slow turning. 2 FPS.
- The CPC port of Ghosts N Goblins. Horrible. Just horrible. As if the game wasn't Nintendo Hard enough already, the Amstrad version ups the ante by removing the armour. Yep, in this version of the game Arthur is a one hit-point wonder, touching any baddie will kill you instantly. Also, the zombies respawn at a ridiculously fast and constant rate, and the version of the music is enough to induce nightmares. Check it out here, but make sure you swig some brain bleach afterwards.
- The Amstrad CPC port of Out Run, by Probe Software. The programmers really had no excuse, as far better driving games had already been available on the CPC for years. How bad was it? Well...
- The graphics gave no sense of acceleration or speed, and mostly looked like cars and unidentifiable roadside objects blinking into existence and jerking erratically towards you.
- The crash animations were gone; your car just made a quiet "barp" noise and came to a dead stop.
- The only other sound effect was a generic "boop-boop-boop" noise that - given that it usually happened when cornering - was probably supposed to be squealing tyres.
- The catchy in-game music was missing. The original release did at least come with a cassette tape of the arcade tunes, but anyone buying a budget/compilation re-release was presumably out of luck.
- There was an expanded version for computers with 128K of memory. This had passable (though inexplicably mangled) in-game music and improved sound effects. Crashes now sounded like maracas being thrown out of a window.
- When you completed a stage, you were punished with a long, boring wait while the next stage loaded separately from cassette or disk.
- The funny end-game sequences no longer existed. You just got a message reading "Congratulations. You have completed OutRun. Now try a different route".
- Oh, and the game would crash at random moments, which was especially frustrating if you'd bought the cassette version.
- To sum up, it screwed up every single thing that made the arcade version awesomely cool. And, as if to mock the purchaser even further, the manual began:
Taking nine months for numerous programmers to develop the graphic design and gameplay, OUT RUN must surely be one of the greatest, if not the greatest, home computer arcade versions of all time. The computer game reproduces as faithfully as possible all of the exciting elements of the OUT RUN arcade machine.
- Probe (the company who did the Amstrad conversion for U.S. Gold) did the Atari ST and Commodore Amiga versions as well- both of which were also panned.
- Green Beret, another side-scrolling action game by Konami, plays incredibly slowly and stiffly in its MSX version. Konami UK was responsible for this port, which was never released in Japan.
PC - Unspecified
- Coming back to Oscar, the so-and-so mascot platformer mentioned earlier in the SNES folder. The PC version itself was a port of the Commodore Amiga version (like so many games from the time). It itself had features cut, as this opening video from the Amiga version shows us. Hear! Stereo sounds that put early Adlib systems to shame. See! Fluid smooth background animation along with an animated title logo! Despair! As you realize that the PC version only had decent sound and a barely passable 16-bit static title logo.
- Tomb Raider was originally released on the PS1 and Sega Saturn. When it was ported to PC, the quality of the FM Vs was severely decreased, the reflection effect on Golden Lara was removed, and worst of all, all of the game's music was removed except for the title screen theme and cutscene dialogue (which was stored as CD audio). Ambient sound was added to the levels as a compromise, but an entire game with no music whatsoever was ridiculous.
- This was made even worse when the Sold Out Software version of the game was released, some copies of which were missing the few remaining CD audio tracks. So during cutscenes, gamers would be "treated" to the characters silently bobbing their heads at each other.
- Thankfully, this has been remedied recently by a patch that not only restores the missing tracks, but also all the tracks from the PS1 and Sega Saturn versions of the game. Justice has finally been served!
- This was made even worse when the Sold Out Software version of the game was released, some copies of which were missing the few remaining CD audio tracks. So during cutscenes, gamers would be "treated" to the characters silently bobbing their heads at each other.
- The PC port of Viva Pinata is notorious for slowness and occasional crashes. The worst part of the game is that the coveted Chewnicorn, the game's rare Unicorn Pinata, is colored wrong and due to a lighting glitch glows black every three seconds.
- Old PSX games were sometimes translated to PC without a number of graphical features. Wipeout lost the light effects that made it such a graphically awesome title in '95 and acquired a peculiar kind of flickering track bug. Its sequel Wipeout 2097 lacked a speed limiter, causing the game to run out of control on top of the line PCs back in '97, never mind today (this can be fixed with a CPU killer program, but then you will find out the hard way that Windows Vista/7 require a lot more CPU to run properly than the game!). The early Twisted Metal games similarly lacked transparency and increasing the resolution scaled down the UI to a microscopic size, although the almost unknown PC port of Twisted Metal 1 did replace a single weapon to make one of the characters viable.
- Any PC port of American Laser Games titles. Somehow mouse-clicking was no substitute for pointing a light gun, and the FMV scenes were nothing home to write about. And when ALG did come out with the PC Gamegun, its accuracy was horrible.
- Left 4 Dead 2 has a port of No Mercy, a campaign from the original Left 4 Dead. During the elevator ride up to the top of the hospital, players can sometimes randomly glitch out and fall through the floor, causing them to fall down the shaft and die. Another glitch with the elevator has players sometimes being teleported to the sky box with no way to come back to the playing field. These glitches can make the game Unwinnable at some points and there hasn't been a fix for the elevator glitch yet.
- The IBM PC port of Street Fighter II was a total trainwreck. Everybody moved like they were paralyzed, combos were impossible (the sprites were invincible while taking damage), if you won while in mid-air your character would stop and do his/her victory pose defying all rules of gravity, and there were only three songs -- Ken's theme (which became the attract sequence song), the character select song (which was the only song to play during gameplay at all) and Zangief's ending theme (which was now everyone's ending theme).
- And the less said about the Street Fighter port, the better. The characters were rendered at an approximate height of twelve pixels, you could only play as Ryu, only a single punch and a single kick button were available, and special moves were disabled for the player (but not for the computer).
- There was a PC port of the NES Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which not only had broken play control (e.g., nearly-impossible to precision jump), jumpy framerates, cheap enemy placement, etc. but was in fact Unwinnable without the use of cheat codes due to a design flaw in the sewers of Area 3 (there's a jump that's too wide with too low a ceiling).
- The PC port of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles the Arcade Game also suffered with only one single song playing through the entire game, awkward controls and enemies that can cheaply wail on you when they're not supposed to. Let Scary-Crayon elaborate on both games.
- Despite what the manual said, you'll never find a single Boomerang or Shuriken in this port.
- Bad Dudes for the PC -- EGA graphics, tiny characters, and no clock speed adjustment, which means the game ends within seconds on computers made just a few years after its release.
- Ninja Gaiden for the PC, with the same problems as Bad Dudes.
- The DOS port of Contra: CGA graphics, PC speaker sound effects only, and (the kicker) completely unresponsive controls.
- The PC port of Mega Man X was pretty spotty, having lower grade music and sounds than the SNES original, as well as removing the various Ride Armors around...despite being on CD-ROM and not limited by cartridge space. It also came with a gamepad modeled after a Sega Genesis 6-Button controller for whatever reason. The X3 PC port thankfully avoided these problems, not to mention had high-quality remixed music.
- The gamepad (which also came with a PC port of Super Street Fighter II) was especially bizarre. Only the bottom row of buttons seem to actually work with the game. Try changing the controls to use any of the top three buttons and they're totally unresponsive. The same goes for other DOS games. Basically, you got a 3-button gamepad that looks like a 6-button gamepad.
- Resident Evil 4 on the PC is a particularly hated example of this. The game was supposed to tout Game Cube-quality graphics with the Playstation 2 content, something that wouldn't happen until the Wii version. Instead, SourceNext (whom Capcom commissioned to develop the PC version, along with the PC ports of Onimusha 3 and Devil May Cry 3) ported the Play Station 2 version of the game as it was, with grainy pre-rendered cutscenes and all, but without the shading and lighting, meaning every environment in the game was lit at 100% brightness with no shadows, thus no atmosphere, and had to have that patched. The game's controls were gimped to boot, to the point where the game could be played on a keyboard and only the keyboard, without mouselook like most PC shooters, and on top of all that, the quick-time events were near-impossible to complete if you weren't using a gamepad, because the button prompts were limited to "button 3" and "button 4" instead of the actual keys on the keyboard. And just to add insult to injury, they accidentally switched the icons for button 3 and button 4 around, so following the on-screen prompts would actually just get you killed. Fortunately, the devoted mod community of the PC version of Resident Evil 4 has not only patched all these but released mods that up the graphics above and beyond any other version of the game, give the FPS purists their mouse aiming, and change the quick-time event icons to match up with the most common gamepads such as the Xbox 360 one.
- Guitar Hero III for PC. Touted to be playable on laptops, for the first Guitar Hero portable experience (until the DS version). Too bad that on some computers the game chugs down to unplayable speeds, apparently unrelated to the computer's specs. The Copy Protection seems to at least be co-responsible, too. And that's why Frets on Fire exists.
- The PC version of Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance (ported from the Xbox version, making it a port of a port) would have been better had it actually been compatible with anything. To play it, it needs to be patched to Hell and back. With fanmade patches.
- It's worth remembering that the Xbox is really just an Intel PC running a tiny Windows-clone kernel with Direct X drivers for its Nvidia Ge Force 3 GPU. Breaking the game on almost identical hardware with similarly designed software is a special kind of failure.
- Then there were the issue of the controls. The 360 port at least had support for the shoulder triggers for slow releasing; at the time of the PC release, despite the fact that there was support for the 360 controller native in Windows, true analogue button support for any joypad was not. You had to map extra buttons for "slow" and "weak" if you were using a joypad (And if you were using a keyboard, but I digress) and- Oh, wait... No more spare buttons on the average pad. Sorry.
- It's worth remembering that the Xbox is really just an Intel PC running a tiny Windows-clone kernel with Direct X drivers for its Nvidia Ge Force 3 GPU. Breaking the game on almost identical hardware with similarly designed software is a special kind of failure.
- The PC port of Gears of War had one horrible, horrible flaw. Occasionally, your saved games would disappear, never to be seen again.
- And then, Epic forgot to renew the certificate on the game's copy protection, leading everyone's copy to declare that the game was pirated and refuse to boot on January 28, 2009. This was fixed just over a week later, on February 6. Talk about prompt!
- Bully: Scholarship Edition for the PC looks like something the Orks dropped out of the sky, The outside areas are 100% washed out, the graphics, while sublime, glitch often, the sounds glitch horribly, the control scheme is god-awful (particularly when the player is told to "press <mousewheel up> and <mousewheel down> together") and the mouse control is like moving a joystick stuck in cold porridge.
- The PC port of Saints Row 2 performs badly even with a good enough computer to play decent PC games. Changing resolution into the lowest 640x480 didn't help with the frustratingly-slow driving sequences. Talking about unstable framerate, it performs well on the on-foot missions. An update to the was supposed to make the game '120% faster', a case of Writers Cannot Do Math as it actually made the game 20% faster. It still wasn't smooth, but it was definitely playable.
- Thankfully Saints Row 2 has a fantastic community that has not only brought the game back to its intended speed but added plenty of neat content. You can check it out here
- The PC port of the Iron Man game of the film had graphics from the Play Station 2 version rather than the superior Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 ones, just for starters.
- The PC port of Prototype is very picky about what qualifies as "recommended system specifications". This troper has a PC that can play Portal 2, Mass Effect 3 and Assassin's Creed Brotherhood with little trouble. Prototype struggles with maintaining a double digit frame rate on the menus, not to mention the game itself! There were also issues with audio sounding exceptionally muffled and other issues. Definitely not one of the best ports out there.
- In contrast to the excellent porting job of Halo 1 done by Gearbox Software, the porting job of Halo 2 by Microsoft Games Studios was damn poor. Many keys couldn't be bound to commands because they were pre-reserved by Games For Windows Live functionality (almost a big "screw you" to all non-WASD keymap users), and network connectivity was patchy (another big thank-you to Games For Windows Live). Worst of all, the game could only be played on Windows Vista. There is nothing in the game code that requires Vista to run; there's just a small line in the installer that prevents people from installing and running the game on XP. Way to whore, Microsoft. Thankfully, it doesn't seem like they've pulled this crap with any of their later GFWL releases.
- To compound the issue, the Halo 2 Editing Kit was extremely gimped. The ability to modify vehicles, weapons, and tons of other functionality were removed, including creating custom tags. This means its impossible to use the official tools to make new single-player content, and greatly reduces the amount of map modification possible; one of the few reasons why you might prefer the PC version over the Xbox version.
- Shadowrun for the PC also required Windows Vista, and again only checked a single line of code. Especially egregious as the game was released prior to Vista Service Pack 1, when the OS was still ridiculously buggy and expensive, and was multiplayer-only.
- Sadly, Ubisoft's new Copy Protection has officially made things worse with the PC versions of Splinter Cell: Conviction and Assassin's Creed 2 - if either you or Ubisoft's internet is anything less than perfect for more than a single second, you are automatically kicked out of the game, and must return to the previous checkpoint upon recovery. (This is treated identically to you dying in AC2, no less!) As always with copy protection, the pirates had it cracked within - well, okay, it took a month, but the method should patch through to crack every future Ubisoft game using the same tech within a day or two. Epic Fail.
- In addition to the above, the copy protection is extremely clunky; users who legitimately bought AC2 and then used the crack to get rid of it anyway consistently report that the game runs exponentially better, going from a chugging slideshow at low or medium detail settings to completely smooth while maxed out and running at 1080p. Those who simply pirated the game get a product that is not only less annoying but actually works better than those who paid for it.
- Just like the aforementioned Ubisoft games, From Dust shipped with the same maligned DRM scheme, even after the developers had previously announced that it wouldn't, deleting and rephrasing their original announcement on the game's own forum. Coupled with minimal visual options (no choice for anti-aliasing or any way to disable the 30-frames-per-second limit on the display) and some baffling performance issues and Game Breaking Bugs (one level is very nearly unwinnable because the tides change much faster than on the console version), the PC release was a public relations disaster for Ubisoft, with Steam giving out refunds to disgruntled players for the first time since Grand Theft Auto IV.
- The PC version of Sonic Mega Collection Plus, the Compilation Rerelease of the Sega Genesis and Game Gear Sonic the Hedgehog games, has broken gamepad support (i.e., you can't even get past the menu selection). For a collection of games originally designed to be played with a console-type gamepad, this is a significant (and still unpatched) oversight.
- The PC port of Grandia II has cutscene encoding problems similar to the Play Station 2 version (needlessly-duplicated frames, creating the illusion of "hanging" attack cutscenes), badly downsampled and compressed cutscenes (resolution somewhere around 256x192 or similar, with countless artifacts) and on top of that requires an obscure codec to play them.
- The GameTap version of Silent Hill 2 has what appears to be a horrible, horrible memory leak. After about 40 minutes of play, almost like clockwork, the game will slow to an absolute crawl. You will take a step, wait five minutes, and then be able to take another step. Seriously. This even applies when bringing up menus, so that if you don't save and quit IMMEDIATELY after the effect starts, it can take nearly thirty minutes to quit the game!
- This is true of GameTap PC games in general. Civilization IV and the Sam and Max games suffer similar fates.
- Early versions of Civ IV do this with or without GameTap unless you patch it.
- Silent Hill 2 has other problems on the PC. On Radeon 9000 series graphic cards (which were the ones produced by ATI when the game was released and were very common), the flashlight doesn't work; turning it on means watching many textures disappear, making it harder to see. The solution could be downgrading to older drivers or adding some lines to a file dedicated to graphic devices, which are equivalent to a hack, for getting what should be a normal feature. In another glitch, you could get CG movies that play all in an acid gree-and-violet palette (and no way around it), and out-of-synch speech during some scripted sequences.
- There was also the "skipping music" glitch, although there was a patch to fix this.
- Which did not fix anything. Unpacking the patch exe reveals...exactly nothing. The entirety of the patch's size is its own exe.
- Part of the problem is the game isn't designed to work on multi-core machines. You can fix some problems including the speech de-synch by manually setting it to run using only one core.
- There was also the "skipping music" glitch, although there was a patch to fix this.
- This is true of GameTap PC games in general. Civilization IV and the Sam and Max games suffer similar fates.
- Rockstar's PC port of LA Noire. Running it on certain setups with the default multithreaded renderer on would give you a lagfest. Adding the -str commandline argument on launch cures the problem somewhat, but it still doesn't completely eliminate all the issues from the game, adding to the fact that it was locked at 30 frames per second, citing limitations with the game's facial animation system.
- Mass Effect was ported from the X Box 360 to the PC. While there were actually gameplay improvements, rumor has it that the game was tested on one graphics card and one sound driver. The released game was exceptionally buggy, with sound effects and background music dropping out and it regularly crashing between the transitions of unskippable cutscenes (which were made unskippable because skipping them crashed the game!). It took over a year and a combination of game and driver patches before the game was stable.
- For a good while, the PC version of Grand Theft Auto IV was considered particularly infamous, not only thanks to noticable performance issues and a clumsy mouse-and-keyboard interface, but particularly because Rockstar decided to package the game with an extra piece of software known as the Rockstar Social Club, a utility created to handle the game's multiplayer connectivity, which in its original iteration would run on top of the game (along with SecuROM and Games For Windows Live) and nag you to log into it not only whenever you wanted to play, but on startup as well. The controls can't be changed (A feature that has been standard even in the DOS era). It was so bad that Steam gave out refunds to angry gamers. Since the game's launch in December 2008, many of the game's performance issues have now been ironed out, and Rockstar Social Club has been integrated into the game software itself...almost a year and a half after launch.
- The Windows version of Sonic CD wasn't one of these to begin with, but turned into a case of this over time. It was released when Windows 95 was the newest thing. And then, years down the road, Windows XP came out, rendering the game unrunnable without the use of a fan-made patch. The problem? The game was still being sold on store shelves, in unpatched form, well after Windows XP was released. Oops.
- Ditto for Sonic R. That port also dropped the transparency effects on the final tracks, but made up for it by adding variable weather conditions. And certain versions didn't even come with the music!
- The long-awaited/delayed Windows version of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed was inexplicably over 30 gigabytes, and has very few options for scaling the game down. It runs fine on a fairly decent rig, but there are no options to tone down the graphics for older machines. The game isn't very well optimized, so while a decent computer will run it with few problems, a mid-range system will choke. In case you were wondering, the port was handled by Aspyr, who were also responsible for the aforementioned port of Guitar Hero III - seeing a connection here?
- Not to mention that the keyboard+mouse controls are extremely clunky and cumbersome. Want to play with a gamepad? Well it does support the 360 controller...Only.
- The PC port of Red Faction: Guerrilla would run far too fast on Windows 7 computers (which is quickly replacing Vista as the go-to Microsoft OS), forcing the player to use a third party hacking program to slow down the game's refresh rate. Furthermore, the game carries an infamous bug where Games for Windows Live informs the player that a patch is available and is mandatory for online gameplay (even if the game itself is already up to date). Every time without fail, should the player accept the patch download, the game's framerate is reduced to a crawl (in the MAIN MENU, mind you) and eventually freezes. Even Volition's release of a manual patch to fix this didn't work for many, making online multiplayer completely unplayable.
- The PC version of Final Fantasy VII had SEVERAL issues when it came out in 1998. The music was all converted into midi format (the most jarring result is that One Winged Angel doesn't have lyrics!), which sounds bad enough without a then top-of-the-line soundcard. The pre-rendered cutscenes - which didn't synch properly with the in game sprites in sequences where they overlapped- needed a special Win95 codec to run (which isn't on the install disc). The game itself had rather high system requirements for something meant for a Win95 machine (Win 98 would be another matter, except the game wasn't made for Win98). It only gets worse from there: On more modern systems, there are game-code/OS incompatibility issues, speed and graphic artifact/rendering issues, and basically the whole thing is a MESS unless you use a handful of fan-created mods. These issues normally wouldn't be held against a game that's over 10 years old, except that as of 2010 it's STILL being sold in this format as part of the EA Classics line!
- Even though Square ironed out most of the problems with the PC version of Final Fantasy VIII, there is still one issue: the game does not work with video cards newer than a Radeon 9000 or GeForce6800 in hardware acceleration mode, which means most modern hardware. And unlike Final Fantasy VII, there is no fix for the game due to the game's Broken Base. The biggest problem was that, like Final Fantasy VII, it's still being sold on store shelves as an EA Classics title even as of 2010.
- Most of the problems are corrected with an fan-made launcher, which also allows to play game with custom resolutions. Coupled with the fact that pc-port featured much better quality character models, the game end up looking MUCH better than the original. It still need relatively high-end system.
- Both this and Final Fantasy VII above have a major aesthetic flaw; the CG-rendered backgrounds, very much a selling point of both games that have aged fairly well even today on the console versions, were not re-rendered for higher resolutions. They'll still 640 x 480 (at best) and on what would be a large monitor at the time of release, the backgrounds all looked extremely pixelated and lacking in detail. Playing these today on a monitor with a much higher native resolution will make the problem exponentially more pronounced.
- The PC version of Dead Rising 2 requires Games for Windows Live. Most Games for Windows Live titles run fine and players who don't care about GFWL see it as a minor annoyance. Dead Rising 2, however, often has problems talking to the GFWL wrapper; it may not even realize its there, in which case, the most you can do is play the game without saves.
- And very much like Blur, you can't change the keybindings.
- Call of Duty: Black Ops is infamous for its disastrous PC launch. On release, a line in the servers' config file that hadn't been set properly caused every online game played to lag terribly. This was fixed after a few days, but the game still had some obvious problems with its renderer (not present in any of the previous current-gen titles that use the same engine) that cause ridiculous framerate drop when shadows are enabled and when sounds are played for the first time. Still, the game was much more playable, especially if you were willing to live without shadows. A few days after that patch, a second patch was released that was supposed to improve server browser functionality and fix several bugs with the browser. The patch did this...but also reintroduced all the problems the first patch fixed.
- The PC ports of Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee and Stranger's Wrath are horribly unoptimized for ports of five+-year-old X Box games, to the point where people with competent gaming PCs (ones that can run Crysis smoothly at high graphic settings) regularly get less than 30 FPS - and the actual graphics are unchanged. Stranger's Wrath has no visual customization options apart from the resolution settings, ranging from "Low" to "Medium", to "High", and "Ultra", with the latter three being 1024x768, 1280x1024, and 1600x1200 respectively. Both games also have noticable issues with the Xbox 360 controller, which is the default recommended joypad for both: In Munch, the left stick changes the direction that the character faces, but doesn't actually move the character - the arrow keys on the keyboard are apparently still needed for that. In Stranger, the game completely fails to recognize the right thumbstick's button press, which is supposed to toggle the switch between first and third person - a mandatory step in the in-game tutorial. Both games are also ridiculously crash-prone: You'd have to be very lucky to even get to the second stage in Munch, and so far just over a third of the playerbase has managed to pass the tutorial in Stranger. And keep in mind, the Xbox itself already has very similar hardware to an IBM-based PC, so you have to be incredibly lazy to botch a port this badly.
- Stranger's Wrath is now fixed as of the 1.1 patch. Performance is nigh flawless on a Q6600/8800 GT/Windows 7 64-bit system at 1600x1200, like it should be for an X Box port like this, and you can now select which controller you want and rebind it through an .ini file. Unfortunately, wireless Xbox 360 gamepads are not configured properly by default (which is baffling when the game clearly shows X360 gamepad controls), and in-game control configuration is still not present. Still, a hell of a lot better than the state it was in at release, and actually quite playable.
- SEGA recently released a collection of 4 Dreamcast games for the PC, with updated graphics and widescreen support. Space Channel 5 Part 2 looks gorgeous! But the gameplay and music sometimes (often) go out of synch (which can be fixed by turning on triple buffer and Vertical Sync in your graphic card's settings), making the game absolutely unplayable. Sonic Adventure looks okay, but it does not support widescreen even though it claims it does (instead you get a border on the left and right), it's lower resolution than the earlier SADX port from years ago, it has absolutely no aliasing, and it crashes. Crazy Taxi similarly has issues with the graphics. And all four games can't save your game without the user creating a few folders in their documents folder, which SEGA appparently forgot to tell the game's installers to do for you. SEGA has not released any fixes whatsoever.
- Star Trek Legacy must have literally been copy/pasted onto a DVD and shipped for PC. Even with a good graphics card, the game lags badly on the lowest settings even on the menu screen. None of the controls can be remapped, in fact, there isn't even an ingame guide to the controls. This is horrible because the default control set up forces an Egregious use of the mouse in situations where buttons should be (And in the 360 version, were) used.
- Valve has had a few issues porting No Mercy from Left 4 Dead into Left 4 Dead 2. The 3rd map in the No Mercy campaign has a shutter door that can be opened only from the inside of the building so that any survivors that managed to get yanked outside can go through the door without having to climb up to the rooftop again. While a Tank can bust the door down, survivors were able to do the same thing with melee weapons, allowing them to bypass the crescendo event. It still took Valve several patches to fully squash the problem, but the Grenade Launcher can still destroy the door. Thankfully, this is not a problem in VS mode since survivors can't carry over weapons from the previous map and the Grenade Launcher never spawns before the event.
- The elevator from the fourth map regularly causes players to fall throught the floor randomly (can mostly happen if a player goes idle) even today desprite several attempts by Valve to fix it. Considering that everything in the first game got fixed very quickly or was not even present, that looks rather pathetic.
- There is also issues with the ports of the L4D1 survivors into L4D2. The character models were directly ported over, so they received no graphical upgrades, which isn't a problem, but they use skeletons/animations from the L4D2 survivors instead of their own. This means Louis is now suddenly taller than he used to be while Zoey seems to have shrunk while she suddenly grows two heads when taking out some of the new weapons. The survivors' hands also clip into the models of the pistols and they don't hold items like pills and bombs properly. On top of this, the survivors also have no lines for the elevator scene in No Mercy and have no reactions when being torn up by a Hunter, despite that there are actual sound files for these events present in the game's files. This makes the port of the old characters look like a rush job.
- Originally, The Sacrifice DLC was only going to be for the original Left 4 Dead, but Valve decided at the last minute to give the DLC to Left 4 Dead 2 players as well with No Mercy as a bonus. This caused the porting to be rushed out with almost zero bug testing.
- In one of the updates, Zoey (and apparently only Zoey) regained her original animations - and lost ALL of her animations she uses in The Passing as an NPC.
- Valve has at least attempted to remedy the survivor dialogue issues regarding Left 4 Dead 2 content such as being attacked by the new special infected and when they use adrenaline shots.
- There's also other audio issues related to The Passing - when killing a Tank at the end of that campaign, Louis may shout "That.. was for Bill!" He may also shout that after killing a Tank in any other campaign starring the original Survivors, even if Bill is perfectly healthy and standing right in front of him.
- As part of the Cold Stream DLC, Valve planned to release all of the Left 4 Dead campaigns into Left 4 Dead 2. Like with No Mercy, the campaigns had numerous issues when they were released to the PC gaming public as a beta. Nearly all the maps had item density problems, which meant that instead of items spawning randomly by the AI Director, the game wound up spawning items at every single spot that they could appear in. This was fixed over time.
- DC Universe Online has but one egregious issue with the Windows version of the game: If you're planning to play the game with a gamepad, you'd better have an X Box 360 controller. Have anything else (like one of those cheap USB DualShock 2-controller lookalikes or even a Play Station 2-to-USB controller adapter)? You may find that the camera is stuck looking up, due to the fact that the right nub is handled differently from X Box 360 controllers on these controllers. No thanks to the fact that the game does not provide a way to remap controller buttons and axes.
- You can still work around that problem with a 360 controller emulator, although since this is an online game it might be seen as a cheating tool.
- And this was also the case with numerous other games, too, as they now make use of the Xinput API. Especially the ones released alongside the Xbox 360 versions.
- PC port for Silent Hill Homecoming. Boy, where do we start? How about the random crashing? A lot worse when it will always happen if you simply want to change the resolution. Want to play it with a gamepad? Good luck because like the eponymous Silent Hill, it has a mind of it's own. Finally, there's the out of sync cutscenes.
- Like Sonic CD above, the Windows 95 port of Doom became this over time - Windows 2000 and later do not allow the game mouse support, as the game communicates with the mouse through a file type (.vxd) which those systems do not support, as Windows 98 and later introduced the Windows Driver Model as a framework for future device drivers. For that matter, Doom95 won't launch at all in Windows Vista or 7. While the latter issue is very easy to fix, the mouse issue requires a fan-made patch which, likely due to the existence of source ports like ZDoom, was not created until 2010.
- The PC port of Dark Sector was actually a fan-made port that got adopted by the publisher and sold for cash on Steam. It definitely shows. The graphics are usually off if you run the game in widescreen or on anything other than the default resolution, and if you use custom key bindings the quicktime prompts still give you the WASD prompts.
- Big Huge Games is known primarily for two Real Time Strategy titles, Rise of Nations and Rise of Legends. Curiously, their next big game, Kingdoms of Amalur Reckoning, was clearly designed exclusively for gamepad controls, because using your mouse to move the camera around your character causes the game to cut frames in an eye-gouging, almost epileptic manner. There is no known fix to an oversight that renders the game almost unplayable. (Weirdly enough, the game is programmed to support gamepad and mouse/keyboard simultaneously, as Day Nine and Felicia Day discovered in their Let's Play promotional video.)
- While it's too early to decide, the highly anticipated port of Dark Souls for the PC (to be released August 24, 2012) may end up one of these by design due to being barely adapted. When the publisher flat out asks you to buy a gamepad and tells no changes will be made to the graphics (which suffered from poor optimization even on the original console), things don't look well indeed. Critics already predict bad sales which will end up blamed on piracy and From Software not making another PC port ever again.
- The Macintosh versions of Sim City 3000 and Sim City 4 were not made in-house by Maxis, and the games reflect this. SC3K was ported by a Ukrainian company which left all the PC interface (such as the file hierarchy system) intact, all while leaving out other features (such as the Building Architect Tool). Sim City 4 suffered as well...the Mac ports were months behind the PC versions, were terribly slow to the point of unplayability, left off the official tools that PC users got, and exhibited behaviors that you would only get if you had a plug-in conflict. In fact, for owners of Intel-based Macs, running the Windows version via a compatibility layer such as Wine or Crossover Games is preferable in every way.
- Feral Interactive's port of Mafia II was just as disastrous as the PlayStation 3 version, not because of the lack of grass and blood, but because it was ill-optimised compared to the PC version, churning out 15-20 fps even on a reasonably powerful Macintosh.
- The Amiga version of Smash TV had badly redrawn graphics, nearly all of the music cut out of the game, and sound effects that are horribly muffled.
- Defender of the Crown for the Amiga had less detailed gameplay compared to the original C64 version (providing only three tactics during combat and only one catapult ammo type), but made up for it with detailed still-image graphics. Given it was one of the very earliest Amiga titles, it's likely down to inexperience or unrealistic deadlines.
- The Amiga version was the FIRST, using the powerful graphics to sell Cinemaware's vision. Later versions had more mini-games and strategy after the Amiga buyers complained (looks great, I get to do NOTHING).
- Test Drive for the Amiga didn't do justice to the computer's graphical capabilities, had the engines sounding more like 8-bit jets than cars, and there are few other sound effects to speak of. By comparison, the technologically less advanced Commodore 64 managed to pull it off a lot better. As with Defender of the Crown, the inferiority of the Amiga version is likely attributable to inexperience and ludicrous deadlines.
Disastrous versions of multi-platform releases:
- Every 8-bit computer version of the Turrican games not on the C64 (the computer they were originally programmed for). Broken controls, choppy scrolling, and missing level features abound, and the graphics take strange liberties with the original material. Of course, this is probably more due to the computers' lack of hardware-accelerated sprites and scrolling (which the C64 had) than the programmers' incompetence, but one wonders why they attempted it at all.
- Actually the Amstrad CPC version of the Turrican games are well regarded and highly playable. Despite the scrolling and smaller game screen, the graphics are far better than the C64 graphics (but then the C64 has a horrendously drab palette to pick colors from). Still not sure why Turrican is green though when perfectly usable blues are available in the Amstrad palette and were used elsewhere in the games.
- Any console port of Sim City 2000. The control responsiveness on these are unbelievably bad. And oh, for something that stores data on flash or battery-backed RAM instead of magnetic media, the save game loading times on those are unbelievably slow. Also, looking for help? You're instructed to press shift+enter!
- Starfighter 3000, the Saturn and Playstation port of the 3DO game Starfighter has terrible draw distance and less details than the original, quite baffling considering how much weaker the 3DO is. The original version made heavy use of the 3DO's ARM RISC processors, but even there the port could have turned out much better than it did. The Saturn version is especially bad.
- Half of the reputation of the Light Gun game Revolution X comes from its abysmal SNES and Genesis ports, which are better-known than the original arcade game. The arcade game had digitized graphics of higher resolution than what those two consoles could handle (here's a comparison) and actual Aerosmith songs for BGM. Also, the ports lacked support for the consoles' respective light gun controllers for no reason. The other half is because of its sheer absurdity, but that's not for this page.
- The X360 and PlayStation 3 versions of Enemy Territory Quake Wars. Very downgraded graphics, missing features (including permanent stat growth, one of the main feature of the original version), limited to 16 players instead of 32 and ridiculously strong auto-aim. At least one ID Software employee called it a textbook example of how not to port a game.
- The X Box version of Gauntlet (1985 video game): Dark Legacy was ported from the Play Station 2 version and gained some new features (such as the ability to store powerups and use them later), but also gained new glitches. The Game Cube version was even worse, having glitches, slowdown, and missing health meters on bosses.
- The Play Station 2 and Xbox versions of Mafia. While the PC version had beautifully detailed graphics and fast loading times, the console versions were unholy messes of ports that couldn't handle the PC's graphics, and in addition to incredibly long loading times and poor controls, the cutscenes were terrible, with all characters' faces being completely expressionless and had blocky character models as well. The driving sequences in the PC version were highly atmoshperic, but due to the console ports severely lacking graphics wise, they're just tedious. Add this to the frame rate taking a serious hit and you're left with a lousy game overall.
- Just about EVERY port of the original Donkey Kong arcade game has been screwed up horribly in some way, ranging from awful controls, to completely messed up graphics and music, to even cutting out the pie factory or elevator boards (or both). To be clear, These videos show several different versions of the game. One of them is the NES version, and another is a graphics romhack of the NES version. The rest? They all suck horribly, though special mention goes to the ZX Spectrum version, which is especially bad. When the Intellivision version was released, people at Mattel suspected it to be an act of sabotage on the part of Coleco.
- It's easier to count the good ones: The NES one is the best, followed by the Atarisoft's Commodore 64 version, Colecovision version and the Atari 7800 version was at least admirable given the dated TIA's chip audio part. The rest? well...
- Need for Speed Hot Pursuit 2 on the Xbox, PC, and GameCube was a completely different game designed by a different development house to the PlayStation 2 version. While there are some track similarities, the sense of speed is all but gone, the handling is worse, and the game in general is far more boring.
- See the above entry about Sim City 2000? Yeah, it applies to handhelds as well. Including the poor attempt to pass off Sim City DS as a port of Sim City 3000 when it's really Sim City 2000 with Sim City 3000's skin applied and some minigames slapped on.
PC Operating Systems
- See the above entry for Donkey Kong? Yeah, the MS-DOS version sucked. So does the Apple II version. Heck, almost all the computer versions sucked. The Atarisoft Commodore 64 version was at least admirable enough, though.
- Splinter Cell: Double Agent for PC. Technically not a port, but despite the simultaneous release it's clearly based on the Xbox 360 version. Considering the fact that the 360 is more PC-like than most other consoles, that the game is based on the Unreal engine, that Ubisoft had released plenty of PC games before (and Splinter Cell PC games, no less), and that it's a pretty high-profile game, you'd think it would go fairly smoothly. Wrong. There are so many problems with this port that a list is necessary.
- The menus are a confusing mess, and you can't use the mouse on the in-game "laptop" menus; you need to stupidly press the keys mapped to "use" and "crouch". This wasn't a problem in earlier Splinter Cell PC games.
- The saved games are arranged in what appears to be completely random order. Not alphabetical, not by mission, not by date or time. Also, checkpoints occasionally overwrite saved games and vice-versa.
- There is no gamepad support except for the Xbox 360 Gamepad For Windows. This isn't new to the Splinter Cell PC series, and it uses the traditional mouse-wheel-driven "acceleration" scheme to compensate for the lack of an analog stick. This causes problems, however: the safe-cracking sequences are affected by the analog stick in a way Ubisoft didn't foresee, and so if you sneak up to a safe at minimum acceleration (the best way to sneak, obviously) on the PC version and try to crack it, you're inexplicably unable to do anything with the safe until you scroll the mouse wheel back up to "re-accelerate". Again, this wasn't a problem, at least when picking locks, in earlier Splinter Cell PC games.
- The game supports a pathetically-low selection of resolutions, not even including full HD or 16:10 resolutions. This is remedied by editing the game's .INI file. Ubisoft's entire team of programmers apparently couldn't figure this out.
- Some allege that the PC version is prohibited from maximum graphical detail to make the 360 version appear better, as editing the INI files can also result in improved graphics. Until a patch, it was not even possible to enable anti-aliasing (mind you, that's all that patch did).
- The "Kinshasa, Part 2" mission is almost guaranteed to crash every time you load a saved game. So you'd better be good at it.
- The game would even freeze for no evident reason when viewing some of the training videos for the Versus multiplayer.
- The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim for the PC isn't technically a port, but it's obvious that it was designed for consoles first (a trend that started with Oblivion, which also had some odd porting decisions.) The developers apparently never considered that players might want to actually use their mouse, so most of the menus are operated using only the keyboard. Many of the multifunction keys either partially fail or stop working completely if you attempt to remap them, and the UI does not update to reflect the fact that you've changed them!
- Despite being a simultaneous release rather than a port, Crysis 2 certainly counts. True, despite being greeted with a mix of legitimate rage over gamebreaking bugs and just plain Fan Dumb, it was a fairly well-made game. The multi-player, however, was horribly broken. Crytek essentially put in no anti-cheating measures whatsoever, to the point that players can simply edit their game data files to give themselves infinite nanosuit energy or bullets that do 100000 damage per shot.
- Also being simultaneous releases rather than ports, ObsidianEntertainment's Dungeon Siege III and BioWare's Dragon Age II are considered by many to count for some of the same reasons:
- Broken gameplay mechanics that don't bother to hide the fact that games were developed for consoles.
- Terrible user interface that does not work well for PC gaming.
- Poorly implemented control scheme that was clearly developed for gamepads and cannot be customized at all.
- Absolutely broken camera controls.
- Zero options for adjusting audio or visual effects.
- Pacing and level design fitted to meet hardware requirements of consoles as well as functionality of the controllers.
- After being delayed for well over an entire month, the PC version of Batman: Arkham City has ridiculously unoptimized graphical settings, forces Direct X 11 despite its infamous bugginess, contains crippling DRM and sometimes has problems with connecting to GFWL for absolutely no reason.
- ↑ It's possible to plug a mouse into the console though.
- ↑ Somebody on the dev team didn't take basic physics. Why would you climb to the TOP of a tower to destroy it? Any smart person knows you set the bomb off at the base of the tower so it'll collapse under its own weight.)
- ↑ From the start, you've got a lot of "extra art" which is either screenshots from the game, or screenshots from the ORIGINAL games, or, in very rare cases, some concept art and figurine photos; and when you complete the game, you get access to five bonus levels...with untextured Dirk and enemies. Yes, he will be white even before he becomes a skeleton.)
- ↑ During the Mordrok boss battle, you should tap only ONE button, save for the moment when you have to turn right. And that's the final boss!
- ↑ Some of the actions are clearly performed in a way different from obvious: you see a platform behind the Dirk, which is obviously situated above his head, perspective-wise, and you have to fly forward. What do you press? DOWN BUTTON.
- ↑ The three-minute Smithey battle is also screwed up: at the first round, you have to get rid of the sword, the spear and the anvil. Three more rounds and Dirk dodges them all by himself. On the fifth...you have to dodge the anvil yourself. Just dare to call that fair.
- ↑ Except, this time around, it's played literally; sometimes, you have to wait 30 seconds watching Dirk stupidly standing in one place while Giddy Goons try to mash him up; bonus points for the fact that you can't skip these anyhow.
- ↑ To clarify, Steam NEVER gives out refunds.