Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

The Inherent Superiority of Text-Based Walkthroughs

Posted by Rampant Coyote on July 6, 2017

I’m stuck in a game. Let’s say it’s an RPG. A big ol’ 50 hour RPG. I’m stuck because I don’t know what I need to do to activate a major quest about halfway through. Drat.

In the old days, what would I do?

I’d find a text walkthrough. I’d do a search. I find what I’m looking for. I go, “Oh, yeah, duh! I forgot to return the Horn of Odin to the priest in Allstar.” After 4 minutes of searching, I’m done and on my way.

In our new modern world of YouTube based walkthroughs what do I do?

Hmmm… this guy has 14 hour-long walkthroughs. Let’s pick one in the middle. Let’s watch and jump around. 20 minutes later, I decide it’s probably not the right one, so I go to an earlier one. Another 15 minutes before I try a later one. Okay, great, I spend 30 minutes on that one, AND I get a handful of other plot points and so forth spoiled for me until I FINALLY find the piece I’m looking for.

Why, oh why, are these video walkthroughs the thing now?

Filed Under: Geek Life - Comments: 5 Comments to Read

  • Infinitron said,

    I think people more often use wikis these days.

  • Kyle Haight said,

    My play stack is old enough that I can usually find text walkthroughs on GameFAQs.

  • Modran said,

    GameFAQs is my goto too.

    It’s the same for online training, now. I just want to read the steps you take to do the thing I want to do. I don’t want to listen to you ramble first, then listen to you explain what I need, pause, step back a bit because I could not remember all the steps, rinse and rewind…

  • CdrJameson said,

    It’s because making a video is easier than writing a walkthough. It just pushes the work onto the people trying to use it.

  • Boleros said,

    I commiserate with you, old friend. It’s not just about game tips either, but for nearly any other brief document, be it a DIY how-to, a recipe, or similar. Youtube has become the thing. I’m living in a rural area now and run on a screaming 1.5 MBit DSL connection. It’s all that’s available other than satellite (no way). Youtube is the bane of the DIY researcher, simply because I can scour a text document faster than I can cache a video.