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Fake Longevity

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"It's like building a house and right after you're finished, you tear it down just to build it one more time. 'Oh yeah, we could have made twelve stages, but instead, let's just make six and make people have to play the game twice'."

A video game subtrope to Padding. Similar to Fake Difficulty, except that it isn't difficult per se, it just makes the game longer to play. The claim that a game contains 50, 100, or more hours of gameplay is often a sign of this. It may also exist in a milder form where the time-consuming element is part of an optional quest. Note: this doesn't mean that it can't still be fun.

Some common ways of doing this include:

  • Forced Level-Grinding: Some RPGs force you to level up your characters several times before you can move on to the next area.
  • Random Drops which may result in a player lingering in an area for a long period of time trying to get the drop.
  • 20 Bear Asses quests which consist of little more than farming randomly-dropped gewgaws. Common in MMORPGs.
  • Mass Monster Slaughter Sidequests which consist of hunting for and killing the same type of enemy over and over again. Also common in MMORPGs.
  • After sending a hundred of the same enemy at the player, the game introduces a new enemy, which turns out to be the same enemy with twice the health and colored blue.
  • Overly Long Fighting Animation (just extending each battle by ten seconds can add hours to a game).
  • Overly long Fight Wooshes.
  • Having many Unskippable Cutscenes and counting them towards the game length.
  • Games having an extremely high Story to Gameplay Ratio, where the player has to sit through literal hours of cutscenes and scripted sequences.
  • Loads and Loads of Loading.
  • Backtracking.
  • Character Select Forcing, primarily when it's tied to specific objectives that can only be done with certain characters, especially when the game uses switch points to change characters and they are far from the objectives, or when it's possible to get far into a mission before you need to switch, and the game doesn't make it readily apparent that you need a specific character for it.
  • A lack of Fast Travel, forcing the player to manually travel between locations, usually over and over again.
  • Anything which appears at random and requires Save Scumming to get the best result. Often leads the player to spend hours at the Minigame Zone.
  • Fake or extreme difficulty, especially if made worse with Checkpoint Starvation.
  • Goddamned Bats that take time to get by without taking damage.
  • An abundance of Marathon Bosses, Goddamned Bosses, Damage Sponge Bosses, and Marathon Goddamned Damage Sponge Bosses that take ages to beat, especially if the boss has no real gimmick besides being as tough as a planet.
  • Marathon Levels with one or more of the following traits:
  • Copy-and-Paste Environments; Repeats the same thing over and over and over again.
  • Missing Secrets, intentional or otherwise, when the game puts a large focus on 100% Completion, so you don't know what's really left to collect.
  • The Wandering You, especially in a game that doesn't have a levelling system.
  • Making the Hub Level unnecessarily huge even though there is nothing to do in it but run back and forth.
  • Adding a Sprint Meter that serves no purpose other than to force you to move across the game world more slowly than you would like to.
  • Waiting Puzzles, which are situations when the best result can only be obtained by doing nothing for a set period of time.
  • Quicksand Box wide-open worlds that don't mark objectives, leaving you to aimlessly wander around the (beautifully-rendered) 20+ square miles of game world for five hours until you accidentally stumble face-first into a steaming pile of story-quest or desperately look up a walkthrough in your frustration because dammit, you have to get some sleep before work tomorrow.
  • Rewards that are dependent on difficulty level, and only unlock when playing on a particular difficulty but not the ones above it. While negligible for players who choose to start on the easiest difficulty settings, a player aiming for 100% Completion and chooses to skip Easy mode to play Normal or Hard mode will have to go back to the lower difficulty level(s) to get all of the rewards, even if they've demonstrated that they are far more than good enough for those easier difficulty modes. Achievement systems are particularly guilty of this.
  • Forcing you to beat the game once to unlock a difficulty that's required for rewards.
  • Requiring multiple playthroughs to experience all the content regardless of difficulty, whether by making you choose one challenge/reward or the other or by unlocking certain rewards, challenges or endings only on a New Game Plus (or "second loop").
  • Time-gating: Restricting player progress by forcing them to wait.
  • Play Every Day: Daily or weekly tasks and/or rewards that obligate the player into playing a game that they wouldn't have touched otherwise.

The common thread in most of these is repetition; the player is given the same challenge or experience several times.

Extremely common, especially in early video games where limited data storage and short development cycles with small teams limited the amount of actual content available to the product, forcing the developer into such techniques in order to draw more modern play times out of what what be a scant few hours (if not minutes) otherwise. And then you have genres like RPGs where game length is almost a contest, and we're so used to it that games that avert it can seem ridiculously short, when in fact they have as much content as anything else in the same genre (the 2D Suikodens, for instance).

The bane of Speed Runners. See Filler for fake longevity in other mediums.

If removing Fake Longevity causes the fans to complain about the game's length, then you've discovered an Unpleasable Fanbase.


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    Action Adventure 
  • The Legend of Zelda
    • The Legend of Zelda: Oracle Games have a lot of it in regards to 100% Completion. Even if you're only going for the Pieces of Heart to complete your life meter, you have to contend with two in each game that are Random Drops, requiring a lot of either running around killing enemies for more chances or Save Scumming. Getting all the rings, however, is the real issue. Not only are there more Random Drops, including randomly-dropped exclusive prizes for some fairly difficult minigames, but there are also a couple of rings that are exclusive to playing the games in each order, meaning that even if you collect everything possible you still need to play through each game twice to collect everything.
    • The Triforce Hunting segment of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker is notorious for being very time consuming but not particularly fun. Particularly since it costs so much to have Tingle decipher the maps that you have to increase your wallet size to even start this part, as you can only carry 300 Rupees and he demands 398 per chart. The HD remaster reduces the longevity by having only three fragments collected via the maps, as the other five are collected directly in the chests that pointed to their maps in the original. It also bumps your default wallet size to 500, so it can carry what you have to shell out for Tingle (although it's still not very efficient to use it).
    • The Wind Waker also has a very long figurine side-quest. In The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap, figurines are collected by taking part in a lottery that can be done over and over again through collecting shells that are very easy to find. In The Wind Waker, the player has to take a photograph of the NPC/enemy they want a figure of, take it to the figurine maker, who only makes one per game-day (so you'd better get to love the Song of Passing, which moves time forward twelve game-hours, should you want to complete this sidequest; you'll be playing it over and over and over...) Also, your camera only holds three photos. Also, the figurine maker will reject photos if they're not "good" enough. With some photos (such as Tetra's), you only have a single opportunity to take them, and you can't be certain if they're "good" enough until you show them to the figurine maker. Don't save in the meantime. Though still time consuming, this sidequest is significantly improved in the HD remaster; Carlov now accepts as many pictures in a single game-day as you can give him, the camera can hold up to 12 pictures, and the camera puts a stamp on pictures he'll accept so you know whether they'll work ahead of time.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, you constantly have to re-visit the same temple to get the next map to go fetch the next Plot Coupon. There's only a handful of waypoints around the temple, so there are levels you will constantly revisit. And no, they don't stay opened, so you have to re-do the puzzles each time (although most, but not all, can be skipped or become much easier with newly acquired items). A Downplayed Trope in The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, though, since the Tower of Spirits is frequently revisited but allows you to skip floors.
    • In both Spirit Tracks and Phantom Hourglass, collecting train and boat parts can take an absurd amount of time, as in Spirit Tracks you need to collect a large amount of rare treasure — simply getting the Golden Train can take a while, depending on luck.
    • For The Wind Waker, Phantom Hourglass, and Spirit Tracks, the sheer amount of time spent on sailing/riding the tracks may have taken up most of the gameplay hours.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is sometimes criticized for this as well, largely due to the vast distances between locations in the Sky and the final Spirit Realm challenge near the end. It doesn't help that the game employs a Sprint Meter that serves no purpose at all other than making you move from point A to point B more slowly than you'd like, as areas that require you to sprint will be peppered with Stamina Fruit that guarantee it won't run out. There's also a point where you must go through the first dungeon again with new enemies to get Sacred Water to heal the Water Dragon. You can't even skip it by getting the water during your first visit; it will inexplicably be regular water if you try to scoop it up before you're tasked with getting it.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild downplays the tradition of "go to dungeon, beat boss, get Heart Container" by having only four dungeons that give said Heart Containers. To find the rest, you have to seek out Shrines and solve the puzzles within to get a Spirit Orb and collect four of those to exchange them for a Heart Container or Stamina Wheel. Since most enemies can hit like trucks, cautious players will do their best to get more Heart Containers, but that requires the player to stop doing side quests and the main story in order to find a shrine. While the shrines themselves don't take very long to complete (unless you get stumped on a puzzle), the act of finding a shrine or getting access to one can take quite a while and it adds up when you have to do it multiple times. Breath of the Wild also has an armor system where you can upgrade your gear if you have the right materials. Most materials are either found in the wild (plants, bugs, etc) or are from monsters directly. Some of said monsters may only appear in specific areas and/or specific times of the day, thus you'll have to do a lot of traveling or waiting around. Due to RNG, a specific material you need may not even drop.
    • Hyrule Warriors: Though the Adventure Mode is largely optional if you only care about the story, completing it tends to take disproportionately long: this is mainly due to the fact that most stages take five to ten minutes to beat at their shortest, there're 128 of them, and any of them with Skulltulas in them need to be beaten at least twice to collect both of them. Combine this with the fact that you often need to beat an additional stage or two in order to gather the items to make the enemies visible and/or reveal the stage reward (in the original and Legends versions, anyway; Definitive Edition lets you just buy most of them once you've collected at least one of each), and you'll need to beat most stages two or three times on average even if you manage to somehow A-rank them on the first playthrough.
  • Mission: Impossible (Konami): There's a number of little interactive sequences that stretch out gameplay. Notably how stairs force you to manually walk your agent up or down a flight in a sidescrolling section, seemingly only to differentiate between going up and down floors or just into the next room. Electronic door locks have you decode the combination to unlock them, but the game is paused while you do so, a chime will tell you the correct number, and only Grant can access the doors anyways, so the whole exercise is pointless.
  • Star Control II, hours and hours of flying through hyperspace so you can try to mine a few more metals? Seriously, some hyperspace "jumps" took upwards of ten minutes of just watching your ship fly in a straight line. Of course, once you get the Portal Spawner you can skip around 90% of that (and save a fortune in fuel). Experienced players are sure to do so early on, and it streamlines the entire game. But like many of the sidequests in that game, you will only find out the thing even exists if you investigate cryptic hints and gossip from the dialog trees.

    Action Game 
  • Batman: Arkham Series:
    • Batman: Arkham Asylum's Riddler Challenges are this. They're not at all necessary, except for the introductory riddle, but give nice juicy chunks of experience to buy upgrades with, and that extra health tank would be useful against those damn stun baton guys that keep popping up. Plus they unlock interview tapes of the villains and character profiles. Many of these require you to backtrack with new gear to older areas just to be able to get them, or require some pixel hunting armed with some fairly obscure Bat-trivia.
    • The sequel game, Batman: Arkham City, is just as bad, if not worse than the original. 400 different collectibles to be gathered with Batman alone, including physical Riddler Trophies to find, riddles/puzzles to solve, and combat challenges to complete. Without having all 400, you can't complete one of the bigger sidequests in the game. Some of these are genuinely engaging and fun to hunt down or do, but it can be argued that there's a great deal of tedious filler involved as well. There are also the balloons and security cameras that can be destroyed. This is somewhat mitigated by the fact that you can get Riddler information on your map by interrogating specially marked green-hued thugs for Riddle information, and TYGAR security terminals give map information on where the cameras are.
    • Batman: Arkham Origins picks up on the basic collectibles from above, only the combat challenges are wholly independent from the Riddler (or rather, Enigma).
    • Batman: Arkham Knight has only 312 collectibles, but it makes things worse by forcing you to get all them if you want to see the game's full ending.
  • The original No More Heroes suffered from this: In order to enter into ranking fights with opposing assassins, you have to first perform side jobs and miscellaneous assassination requests to work up the cash needed to enter the fights. It didn't help that most of these side quests were quite tedious. Thankfully, this was improved in No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle, where you didn't need to pay to partake in ranking fights. The entry fees are brought back in No More Heroes III, but the prices aren't too high and there are more sidequests and stuff to do in order to gather the money (including pre-rank fights against mooks in designated spots).
  • You have to collect a certain number of "hero points" in between chapters of the second Spider Man: the Movie game. This translates to a lot of purse- and balloon-retrieval. In Ultimate Spider-Man (2005), as Venom, there's a kid holding a balloon in his tutorial; you're supposed to absorb the kid's life.
  • TRON: Evolution: Most of the game is excruciatingly long sections of running around Copy-and-Paste Environments, using Le Parkour to run up and across walls over Bottomless Pits, and fighting an unnecessary number of enemies when you actually get somewhere. The controls are kind of finicky, meaning you'll fall (and die) several times most likely. Boss fights are usually some form of Guide Dang It!, and that's if you're NOT looking for the extremely out-of-the-way collectables (mainly, the Abraxas Shards) in an otherwise linear game.

  • Creepy Castle invokes this trope for laughs in one of the song's description, claiming it will make the player asleep and thus increase the time spent on the game.
  • Flower, Sun and Rain has many, many aspects that are there purely there to screw with the player and test their patience. Almost every instance of this is lampshaded;
    • Every puzzle starts with Sumio reciting a long incantation before needing to jack his briefcase computer into whatever the puzzle is contained in. There's ten plugs, and you're outright told at the beginning that finding the right plug is purely up to trying them all out until one works. Should you fail a puzzle, you're booted out and need to listen to the incatation and jack in all over again.
    • There are multiple instances where the player needs to travel insanely long distances by foot, with absolutely nothing to do on the way there, and just as often has you walk all the way back when you reach your destination. There's even a step counter to help sell just how much walking there is.
    • The plot is, ostensibly, about Sumio dealing with a terrorist planting a bomb on an airplane. Every day in the "Groundhog Day" Loop has him getting sidetracked helping various people with increasingly off-beat issues, even when there's no reason he can't just walk past them, while ending with vignettes for a side-plot that seemingly has nothing to do with the overarching story.
  • King's Quest VI has a very mild form of this. At the beginning of the game, you can spend a coin at the Pawn Shoppe on one of four items, and you can always trade in the item you've chosen for one of the other three items. Naturally, throughout the game you'll have to use all four of them, necessitating some walking back and forth to the Pawn Shoppe.
  • Plenty of Nancy Drew games include some form of Fake Longevity. Such as needing to play a minigame to obtain money, needing to travel around the game world, needing certain time triggers (However these always let you skip to the next day or the aforementioned time), go on a Fetch Quest, or solve a somewhat contrived puzzle.
    • "Secret of the Old Clock" is particularly bad about this one. The game's story itself is... surprisingly short. Even by the standards of games like these which can be beaten in only 2-3 hours. However, "Secret of the Old Clock" is stretched out by requiring Nancy to drive around town (and keep track of her gas tank, which requires money), delivering telegrams around the various parts of town for money, talking to random one-shot NPCs who you can't simply call, and needing to get money since the only phone usable in-game requires money. On top of this, there are several puzzles that require some very precise actions and are very unforgiving.
    • "Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake" requires Nancy to wander around the game world and take pictures of birds. Only one (The red tailed hawk) provides any kind of story purposes, and these birds are also only found at specific times of the day. Oh, and you need to obtain camo gear otherwise some birds won't stick around, and that requires you to do another task.
    • In "Sea of Darkness", Dagny is standing under a broken heater but refuses to go inside or talk with Nancy about something until Nancy fixes the heater. Her dialogue of it being a "Which one of us will break first?" battle of wills, as well as Nancy commenting on how the actual heater's wiring is nothing like actual wiring suggests the developers were simply having a bit of fun by that point.

    Fighting Game 
  • Getting everything in the story mode of the first Dissidia: Final Fantasy ultimately grinds down to having to do every scenario (of which there are nineteen of them) about three times each for a majority of them. You have to clear it in the first place to unlock the bonuses, interact with every single thing on each map (fight the battle pieces and take the potions, chests, and ethers), and collect all the prizes on the reel in order to reach 100%. Especially for a player who has already played the game, it turns into a whole lot of busywork, and at times basically mandates overleveling in order to be able to wreck everything the way the game expects you to.
  • Dragon Ball Xenoverse 's MMO based structure brings an unfortunate level of Random Number God into the Parallel Quest design. Sometimes you can't trigger an Ultimate Finish even if you fulfill all the requirements for it. Even when you do, it's not a guarantee you'll get that Ultimate Skill or Super Attack you were farming for. Even worse for clothes and Z-Souls, which may also come with certain conditions before you get lucky enough to acquire them. This makes getting 100% Completion much longer than it needs to be.
  • The King of Fighters XIII gives you two options to unlock all the available colors for customization: use each playable character 40 times — and there are over 30 characters — or pay for a unlock key. Other feats, as unlocking the gallery and two additional playable characters, also have requirements as obnoxious as that one, and of course can be unlocked by purchasing a DLC unlock key.
    • KOF: Maximum Impact 2 is another offender. Each character has two costumes with eight color palettes for each of them, but only the first four are unlocked for each costume. Unlocking the other four on each costume (eight in total) requires you to beat any of the 1P modes with every character. While there are plenty of modes to go around (most of them packed inside Challenge Mode), there are also plenty of characters to do this with: you start with 24 and unlock 14 more along the way, for a total of 38. And the requirements are the same for the secret characters too. You only unlock one color at a time, and only for the costume you choose each time, and by the way, grinding them in Mission Mode is useless: you won't unlock anything by completing a mission you already completed with another character.
  • Want the full gamerscore from the 2011 reboot of Mortal Kombat? Among other things, you need to have played each character — of which there are 27 without DLC — for 24 hours in total. Two of them can only be unlocked by playing through the campaign, which takes another couple of hours.
  • Super Smash Bros.:
    • The Great Maze in Brawl. By this point, you fought a good portion of the Smash Bros. crew and all of the bosses. Done? Nope! Now you have to travel in a maze that consists of all the areas you went through and have to beat ALL Smash Bros. characters AND the bosses (again!) before you're even allowed to fight the final boss. That one level comprises about 31% of the completion total.
    • Also in Brawl, the challenges for beating certain modes with every single character in the game. To 100% the whole thing, you need to beat Classic Mode, All-Star Mode, Boss Battles, Home Run Contest, all five Target Smash levels and 100-Man Brawl with all 35 characters. The Target Smash levels in particular are worth mentioning since previous games had one level for each character, but this one has all characters doing all of the exact same 5 levels.
    • In Super Smash Bros. for 3DS, you have to beat several modes with every single character to beat all the challenges like above. This means beating Classic Mode, All-Star Mode, 10-Man Smash, 100-Man Smash, participating in Target Blast, and placing first in Smash Run with all 48 characters. Fortunately, the Mii Fighters and DLC characters don't count, but that's still a tall order.
    • The Wii U Challenges are more difficult and still include a few "all characters" objectives (including clone characters), such as clearing Classic on 7.0, and All-Star (no continues) on Hard.
    • In both the Wii U and 3DS versions of the game, unlocking all of the custom moves and gear takes forever, since it's comprised mainly of Random Drops, and things you've already collected will keep popping up.

    First Person Shooter 
  • BioShock 2 infamously extended the time it took players to harvest ADAM by asking them to perform a prolonged Escort Mission for every single little sister they find in the game. Rescuing/harvesting little sisters (whether you perform to escort mission or not) is literally the only way to upgrade the player's character. And to make matters worse, you are forced to fight a Goddamned Boss after rescuing the last little sister in every level, in addition to the ones guarding every little sister.
  • Borderlands:
    • The DLC Mad Moxxi's Underdome Riot. Rather than actually create a challenging new clump of story, the designers scratched together three small arenas using leftover textures and models from the game, and make you fight out five rounds in each of them, each round consisting of five waves of about 20 enemies each. So that's 75 waves of enemies to pass a quest that gives you relatively little experience, a paltry amount of new guns, and 10 gamer points.
    • If you want the other 115 gamer points you paid for, you have to sit through over THREE HUNDRED waves in the advanced challenges - which still take place in the same three arenas. Even worse, it holds you back with multiple examples of Fake Difficulty, like taking you back to the start of the PREVIOUS wave if you die, and throwing in random modifiers that inevitably leave you with no shields and your health draining away facing an enemy which can only be injured with headshots. Oh, and the waves start 'doubling up' later on, so once you've cleared five of the enemies, another five spawn in. Towards rounds 15-20 it seems like there are about two to three times the amount of enemies per wave compared to the starting waves.
    • It's been estimated that overall, the DLC pack takes 12-15 hours to complete (assuming you cheat, in which case it's boring - if you don't cheat it's almost impossible), for 3 maps that each take about fifteen seconds to do a complete lap of. The longevity on this is about as inflated as it can get without bursting.
    • The Secret Armory of General Knoxx doesn't fare much better. You spend hours (literally) driving down highways, occasionally leaving the car to infiltrate copy-pasted Crimson Lance toll outposts to deactivate their roadblocks... with the pull of a single lever (Good thing they'll never think about flipping the switch again!). Fridge Logic ensues as you are requested to "remove" two of these roadblocks. If you have to leave your vehicle and take a walking detour between said roadblocks because the road is blocked entirely by debris, how are the rebel trucks supposed to pass through anyway?
    • The real Fake Longevity in Borderlands is the amount of time you will spend walking between locations because your car is made of paper and got blown up again.
  • In Far Cry 2 , nearly every single mission in the game is set faaaaar from where you actually receive the missions from, amounting to seemingly endless driving (occasionally spiced with gunfights every time you cross through a guard post) in the process. And while there is Instant Travel possible in the form of Bus Stops, these are so few of those in between they don't do much to cut out the filler.
  • The "Patience" chapter of Half-Quake: Amen is an intentional example of this, being set in a simulation of a train station that tasks you with waiting for 20 minutes (or even longer if at any point you'd get bored and do risky stuff that gets you killed, especially if you don't quick-save beforehand), with not nearly enough of available side activities there to make up for that amount of time.
  • Halo:
    • Halo 2 implemented a new mechanic for its "Legendary" difficulty setting. While the foes in Legendary are nowhere near invincible (they're just a bit more challenging), Bungie decided to give co-op mode a 'status link' between the two players; basically, if one of you dies, the game resets you back to your last continue point. In the past the remaining player could retreat and allow his comrade to respawn back in (if they could make it a fair distance from local enemies without being killed themselves), but this is no longer a viable option. Naturally, this means that any blunders can cause you to replay the same room over and over and over again, made much worse by the new health system.
    • After considerable backlash from fans, Bungie restored the old mechanic for Halo 3's Legendary difficulty setting. It (and subsequent games) also have fake longevity via Fake Difficulty.
  • All games in the Metroid Prime Trilogy series feature a search for Plot Coupons that open the way for The Very Definitely Final Dungeon, which are accused of only existing to make the game longer. Only the third game made an attempt to shorten the task by putting the coupons along your path as you travel the game normally and not requiring every single one to pass to the final area.
  • The remake of Rise of the Triad not only relies on a checkpoint system, it uses very long platforming segments devoid of combat to pad out the game's short length.

  • Final Fantasy XIV during 1.0 was notorious for having areas that were copy and pasted everywhere, limiting the player to how much experience points a day they could earn, needing to be certain classes in order to do certain tasks, and other problems. When the game was rebooted for 2.0, the majority of the problems were axed, but the relic quest lines were purposely designed to take as long as possible so that players could get their relics at their own pace without worrying about needing to clear difficult end game content. However, 99% of the relic quests involve having the player playing in old content numerous times to grind for specific items.
  • Star Trek Online:
    • The un-remastered Cardassian story arc. Untouched since game launch, almost every mission in it is a Marathon Level with Loads and Loads of Loading between space and ground maps multiple times per mission, and usually involves a Mass Monster-Slaughter Sidequest full of Goddamn Bats. And then there are missions with the simple goal to interact with a few objects, except there are usually hordes of Respawning Enemies you have to chew through, and you are forced into Back Tracking through them most times. All the loot including the mission rewards are little better than Shop Fodder. Word has it though that the Cardassian missions will be overhauled with the release of Season 11 in late October 2015.
    • Most of the original storyline missions were like this, but have since been remastered and streamlines to be quicker, more interesting and fun to play.
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic:
    • The game shipped with at least a couple of notorious bits of Fake Longevity. The first is the infamous Tatooine Jawa balloon, which requires at least 30 minutes riding a balloon to get to a couple of stat-increasing items. This 30 minutes does not include the wait time for the balloon to show up at the one location you can board it. The second problem is the orbital station found at many planets. Instead of being able to land directly on the planet, you're forced to stop at the orbital station and run to a shuttle that will actually take you to the surface. This doubles the number of loading screens you have to sit through to reach your destination. Fan outcry has been sufficient enough to get Bioware patch the game so that players can return to their ships directly from the planet surfaces as well as speeder travel on the orbital stations.
    • They also had a special spin on the random loot system with assigned drops in the Normal Mode operation (raid) difficulty. The boss would drop a set amount of loot (2 pieces in 8-man) that on top of being randomly decided, also was pre-assigned to a person who could use it. This was supposedly to prevent loot drama in pick-up groups, but the normal setting was a natural part of the learning and gearing process for organized groups too. This meant guilds could have their tank inquisitor get his third loot token for pants in three consecutive weeks that they had nothing to do with but sell to a vendor, while the healing inquisitor was unable to loot it.
  • Warframe: Farming bosses in the hope of getting blueprints to craft new Warframes or weapons is a tedious thing not helped by the recalcitrance of the Random Number God. Or you can go Bribing Your Way to Victory... and that doesn't work if you want a Primed variant, which requires taking on special missions in the Void that can only be accessed by either buying keys with real money, or grinding for them.
    • Before update 15.13, getting Hydroid's parts involved hunting for special units that would only spawn in one place, then hoping they dropped the resources you needed, then finally fighting Councilor Vay Hek. Thankfully, update 15.13 removed that entirely and now Vay Hek can be accessed any time provided your Mastery Rank is 5 or higher.
    • Mesa's parts drop from Mutalist Alad V. In order to kill him, you need to first complete the "Patient Zero" quest (which awards you the blueprint required to build the key), then wait for an Invasion that offers Mutalist Alad V Nav Coordinates to show up. Thrice. Then you can finally fight Alad V, but since every Warframe has three components (Helmet, Chassis and Systems) you need to go through the whole ordeal at least two more times.
  • World of Warcraft used to do this pretty shamelessly.
    • If you wiped in a raid dungeon, you often had to walk for ten minutes only to get back innote , and then another thirty to get back to the last boss. Unless the normal enemies started respawning, in which case you have to wait for most people to get back in and kill all of them again. And after some real life days, the entire raid would reset. To say nothing about the "attunements", increasingly elaborate quest chains every player needed to complete to even enter the raid, or the pains of having to buff 40 people individually as a paladin with buffs that only lasted 5 minutes. However, in the expansions these timewasters were reduced severely to make raids more accessible.
    • A similar development took place with ingame cutscenes becoming more commonplace even in normal dungeons. Culling of Stratholme contains nearly 8 minutes of talking, most of it at the very beginning, as well as an Escort Mission segment with a rather slow NPC. Trial of the Champion had a similar introduction but was soon changed so players could choose to skip through the majority of it, with Stratholme being changed to the same concept in the next patch. Newer instances changed the design completely so that you can generally just do your thing while the NPCs talk, though some bosses still have some pre-combat banter you need to sit through before you can actually engage them. Even more notorious than Stratholme was the final boss in Tempest Keep during the Burning Crusade. This boss was considered incredibly complicated even by World of Warcraft standards, and featured a 15 minute scripted opening that had to be repeated every time you attempted the fight, even if it was your 10th time seeing the same fight that day.
    • Travelling in World Of Warcraft is another form of fake longevity. For the first few levels, you are restricted to base movement speed (most but not all classes get some form of foot-travel aide such as Blink or Ghost Wolf form these days; though they used to come much later). You can buy your first ground mount at Level 20, increasing your speed by 60% of base. You can upgrade it at level 40 to a 100% speed increase. You can buy your first flying mount at Level 60, which is +100% on the ground and +150% in the air. Flying is the quickest and safest form of travel, but Flight Masters often use elaborate, scenic routes. In the past you even had to stop at each Flight Master to pay for the next flight. While some of these problems have been straightened out, even if you're using your own flying mount and the auto-run key it can still take up to an hour to fly the length of a continent, munching scenery all the way. And pray the server doesn't disconnect you for inactivity. It's made more noticable by the way that Zeppellins and Hearthstones are almost instant travel, as are long-distance ships, but you still have to wait for the ship to arrive at the dock (up to ten minutes if you don't want to miss your flight), then wait for it to leave.
    • The guild perk which let someone summon anyone in their raid/group to their location has been replaced with a perk that slightly increases the speed when using the aforementioned flight masters. Another guild perk that was removed does this indirectly by halving the duration of flasks thus doubling the number of cauldrons that need to be made for a raid.
    • There are also the legendary weapon quests, which often require you to repeatedly kill raid bosses in order to collect quest items they drop (and depending on the quest, it might not be a 100% chance). And then once you complete that quest, you might get another one that requires to you farm even more raid bosses. It's not uncommon for a high end raiding guild to spend months getting a legendary weapon.

    Party Game 
  • Mario Party DS: Getting all collectible trophies and figurines will require repeating long, arduous actions multiple times. For example, you have to complete Story Mode with each playable character to earn their respective trophies, you have to defeat each boss multiple times to get all their trophies, and collect up to fifty-thousand MP points to get all the badges.

    Platform Game 
  • Braid has its stars, the first two stars in particular. The first star requires you to wait at least thirty minutes before you can jump on a cloud, then wait another hour and a half before you can get the star. Yes, that's two full hours of doing nothing but letting the game run. You cannot save or restart the level during this time or you'll have to start over again. The second star must be obtained before you complete the second world or else you must restart your game to get it. Even worse, the stars are so well hidden they could double as Easter eggs.
  • Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time had a nasty case of this for players wanting to go for 100% (or 106%). Each stage has six gems, three for getting wumpa fruit (40%, 60%, and 80%), one for getting all the boxes, one for dying less than three times, and a hidden one. Part-way through the game you unlock the N'Verted stages which are the previous stages but with some gimmick. They also have six gems each. Some levels have you play as another character and has it bleed into a previous level that you also have to complete. The Relics are back as well, but where Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped only required the Gold for completion, this game requires Platinum, and you don't get the Crash Dash to help. On top of that there's the Flashback Levels. To access them you need to find a video tape in a level which can only be found if you don't die a single time. Then you gotta do the level itself. And then there's the N'Sanely Perfect Relics, which are gained by beating a level without dying and collecting every box (thankfully it only applies to the normal stages). Fans did not enjoy the insane amount of work and time it took to get everything (when previous games made a lot easier).
  • Donkey Kong:
  • The indie/freeware game Billy Bob the Cactus Blob 0.5 parodies this with its "crappy invisible maze to extend gameplay".
  • Ghosts 'n Goblins is one of the biggest offenders, if not the biggest. The game is insanely hard, with a lot of elements that make the game absurdly frustrating and prolonged, but the worst is this: the first time you beat it, you get a fake ending, and you're sent back to level one on a higher difficulty. You're actually forced to beat the game two times in one sitting to see the real ending, which at that point is likely to feel even less rewarding than the fake one. As if that's not enough, pretty much the entire series has this!
  • In I Wanna Be the Guy, the Koopa Clown Car boss is actually three fights in a row. The third boss is on par with the game's usual difficulty. However, the first two forms are trivial to beat. Essentially, it's an unskippable two minute cutscene every single time you fight the boss. And given how many times you'll need to do that before you finally manage to defeat the third form, those two minutes add up very quickly. There is a save point beforehand which requires you to get the sphere first THEN jump back into the room with the save point which alleviates this a bit.
  • Kemono Heroes takes a cue from Ghosts 'n Goblins by making you complete the game twice in order to reach the Final Boss. However, some things do change during the second playthrough, such as enemies getting tougher and some stages getting additional hazards, and some boss battles are either different or aren't refought at all.
  • The earlier Ratchet & Clank games had ridiculous amounts of grinding for weapon XP or cash to pay for weapon upgrades. This became even more obvious by the addition of game-show "arenas" (sometimes more than one per game!) consisting of destroying wave after wave after wave of the same handful of enemies.
  • A good number of Sonic the Hedgehog games are guilty of this trope:
    • In order to unlock the Last Story in Sonic Heroes, you must complete each Team's individual story, which is standard enough and has been Sonic Team's standby since Sonic Adventure. The problem is that each different story consists of four almost-identical playthroughs of the same 14 levels and 7 bosses, with the main differences being different arrangements of enemies and "longer" stages that often amount to extended repetitions. (e.g. in the Egg Fleet stage, Team Rose must merely reach Eggman's first battle ship, while Team Sonic must reach and destroy two battleships, Team Dark three and although Team Chaotix don't have to destroy any battleships, they have to contend with their second and final Stealth-Based Mission).
    • Playing the Last Story in Shadow the Hedgehog requires you to see all 10 endings of the main story. This means playing through the levels of each possible path again and again, having to play the final levels at least twice and choosing the opposite mission to face the other final boss of that level, and having to play Westopolis 10 times.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) contains thirty-second loading screens before and after cutscenes or new areas, the first of which may take less than four seconds; backtracking through almost every level with every team; spacious hub areas; Fake Difficulty puzzles (billiards, anyone?) and generally schizophrenic controls which add much onto the twenty hours of gameplay. There's also a point in Sonic's story where you have to replay Wave Ocean as Tails with minimal changes for no real reason.
    • Sonic Unleashed does away with the load screens (to an acceptable degree), and has fair gameplay, but the Fake Longevity comes in with the differences in the versions.
      • The 360 and PS3 versions take the completely optional collectible medals in 06 and makes them mandatory to unlock new levels. Collecting 120 Sun Medals to play the final day stage will require either excessive replays, slow sleuthing level runs, or doing a ton of sidequests. Oh, and you'll also need over 100 Moon Medals as well. And Werehog levels may take 20 minutes to beat, each. And don't even mention Eggmanland. Most of the medals were usually on alternate pathways or required some tricky movements in either type of level. However, given how backtracking is usually impossible, missing an opportunity to get a medal usually means having to replay a level.
      • Meanwhile, in the Wii and PS2 version of the Werehog stages you would get two medals for collecting (almost) all the rings/experience points (nothing too hard for most levels)... and the third medal for completing the level within a time limit, which depending on your playstyle could require at least two playthroughs (though still doable with luck on a first run). The daytime stages, meanwhile, tie medal acquirement to how fast you can complete the level in a time limit alone, meaning a first run would usually net you two of three and then numerous repeats learning the stage and shortcuts to get that coveted S-Rank and final medal. There are also numerous side missions for day and night stages that would provide one Medal of the type upon completion. However, the fake longevity is averted because medals are only used to open the Secret Areas in the Gaia Gates to unlock collectables, extra missions, and increase the maximum live counter Sonic has for stages (he starts out with three and unable to restore them with rings if lost).
    • Sonic Colors has mercifully pared back much of the fake longevity. Yes it can take excessive replays to get the Red Rings and the S ranks to unlock the Game Land levels and, subsequently, Super Sonic, but they are completely optional. In fact, you can't use Super Sonic in boss battles. Unlike Unleashed (and Generations), Colors didn't allow the player to acquire most of the collectibles on their first run through a stage since Wisps needed to access most of them were unlocked as they progress through the game, forcing players to return to previously beaten stages. This did sometimes allow for different paths to be taken, however.
    • The Chao Garden in Sonic Adventure 2 (including the Gamecube version). The amount of rings needed to buy things to improve your Chao are staggering. Even if a 0 was lopped off the end of each price, they would still be too expensive. Got an A-Rank on all five missions in every level of the game? You probably still don't have nearly enough rings. As this FAQ writer says, thank goodness for glitches.
    • All the games in the Sonic Advance Trilogy have something like this. The first Sonic Advance requires you to beat the game with all four characters and get all the Chaos Emeralds to unlock the true final boss and get the true ending. In Sonic Advance 2, you not only have to beat the game with four characters like last time, you must also get all the Chaos Emeralds for Sonic only, and you must get 7 Special Rings in one life in each zone to be able to get each Chaos Emerald, and you have to do this with every other character if you want to unlock extra content such as Amy. In Sonic Advance 3. you have to scour each zone for Chao, get a Special Key and complete an act of each zone while carrying it, and then attempt increasingly-difficult Special Stages to get the true ending (though unlike Advance 2 the Chao are permanent collectibles and you aren't required to collect them with every character, although there are several that require someone specific).
    • Sonic Rush Adventure has you do plenty of sailing and replaying levels to be able to accumulate enough materials for upgrading your vehicles, getting the Chaos Emeralds from the Johnny races and for getting where you need to go. The fact that obtaining higher ranks on main levels increasing the number of material obtained does make the grind a little less annoying, however.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
    • Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels has five extra Worlds after World 8. The catch? To get four of them, you have to beat the game eight times, and to get the fifth, you have to beat the game with NO Warp Zones. Fortunately, the Super Mario All-Stars version only requires you to complete Worlds 1 through 8 once for Worlds A through D, but saving after using any Warp Zone PERMANENTLY locks off access to World 9 for that save file, even if it previously had access.
    • In Super Mario Bros. 2, each character can be selected for any stage of any playthrough, and you only have to defeat the final boss with one character to see the ending. This is a marked change from (and an improvement on) the game it's adapted from, Doki Doki Panic, where each character's progress is tracked separately and all four characters have to defeat the final boss for the credits to roll, meaning you have to beat the entire game four times. Since it's a disk-based game, that's not taking into account the frequent disk flipping and loading times going on in-between, dragging things out even longer. Fortunately, Warp Zones are allowed.
    • Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine force you out of a level every time you collect a Power Star or a Shine Sprite, even if another one is readily available within the same mission. The only exceptions are the 100-Coin Power Stars and the Red Coin Power Stars in Bowser's stages in 64. This can often make levels feel repetitive if you have to go through the same platforming challenges several times to get each one, such as Tick-Tock Clock. Both KingK and Exo Paradigm Gamer have criticised this as a padding tool and antithetical to a Collectathon Platformer, though Exo considers it more excusable in Sunshine as the levels do change significantly from one mission to the next. Conversely, KingK considers it worse in Sunshine, arguing that it breaks the sense of immersion that Isle Delfino and the main levels try to build up.
    • Super Mario 64 DS has you catching rabbits so you can get keys to unlock minigames. Slight as they are not vital to the plot, but there are a ton of them and there's no way to tell which you've caught. So you could spend 15 minutes going after a rabbit just to find you've already caught it. Also, after a certain point, you'll stumble onto shiny rabbits. Catch one...and he'll say there are around 7 more. They randomly replace a regular rabbit you've already caught (your best bet is the Castle Grounds with Yoshi, which has six total) and you need to catch them all to get a key, which unlocks the silent, white door in the character select room to get a Star.
    • Want 100% Completion on Super Mario Galaxy? First, get all 120 stars. So far, so good. Then you have to redo the final Bowser stage. Then you unlock Luigi, who retains his slippery traction and high jumps, and as him you have to collect all 120 stars again and complete the final Bowser level a fourth time — while a few missions have become harder, the vast majority of them are unchanged. This unlocks the final level... which also has to be done twice.
    • The Green Stars in Super Mario Galaxy 2. It's Fake Difficulty and Fake Longevity combined. 120 extra stars, which are located in the craziest locations, have no hints on the location save for a very quiet tinkling sound, and are spread out in every galaxy in the game, all of them being levels you've finished. Then, after getting all the green stars and beating the regular Grandmaster Galaxy level, you still can't play The Perfect Run until there are 9999 Star Bits in the bank.
    • Super Mario 3D Land has you have to play every single level as both Mario and Luigi and get gold flags (hit the top of every flag pole in the game at the end of the level) to get stars on your game file and unlock the true final level. If you were prepared beforehand it made it slightly less tedious (by getting the gold flag, star medals and initial level completion in one run), if not you had to play every single level at least three times just to complete the game.
    • New Super Mario Bros. 2 has two examples, both for otherwise 'optional' rewards. For one thing, to get all the stars on the file select screen, you had to max out the lives counter to the point you got three crowns, otherwise entirely optional in past games and painfully tedious unless you used those infinite lives tricks. Then to get the final rewards? You need a million coins. Then about TEN million coins. That's a good few days of non-stop Coin Rush with the best possible set of levels (30,000-coin maximum per run) if you're lucky, weeks or months if you aren't. All for different title screens.
    • Super Mario 3D World. In order to obtain the Character Stamps (stamps of the main character's portraits for use in Miiverse Posts), you needed to beat every level with a single character... just for that character's stamp. In multiplayer, the character has to touch the flagpole for it to count. It gets especially glaring once you unlock Rosalina after having beaten a large portion of the game: you need to backtrack and beat all of the previous levels with Rosalina. And you can't keep track of whether or not you've beaten a level with a certain character until the very last world is unlocked.
    • The Super Mario World ROM hack SMW Lost Map has a somewhat ridiculous example where instead of remaking just one level from the original Super Mario Bros, the creator makes players beat all eight worlds of the original game in a row with no checkpoints, as if it was just one massive level.

    Puzzle Game 
  • The Uru expansion pack The Path of the Shell included a teeth-grating age named Ahnonay, in which a player had to constantly link between the Age's four states of existence (each displaying a greater degree of decay). If that wasn't bad enough, a Relto page hidden in this Age required MUCH more linking than a typical playthrough would. Not to mention, Shell includes, erm, "brilliant" puzzles such as standing in one place for fifteen minutes until a ladder appears. (Thankfully, Myst Online: Uru Live removes a number of the more ridiculous puzzles from "Shell" Ages.)
  • Nearly all of the castles in The Castles of Doctor Creep require repetition of puzzles or cycling through already-solved rooms, but some are worse about it than others. Castles like Tannenbaum or Carpathia have one-time puzzles in rooms, while others like Baskerville or Romania require the player to visit a room multiple times just to solve its puzzle. Baskerville is particularly bad about this, since to cycle through that castle you often have to re-solve puzzles you already solved once before.
  • Chip's Challenge: Some of the hardest levels are also among the most prolonged, mostly due to the nearly unlimited amount of block pushing.
  • Gyromancer has the character return to the mission select screen when he completes an objective for a given stage... after clearing the path that contains more of the map. In this game, 100% completion requires obtaining a sufficiently high score, and your progress is reset back to 0 if you left the stage - requiring you to rebattle monsters that you defeated.
  • The London Life bonus game in Professor Layton and the Last Specter boasts over 100 hours of gameplay. However, most of those hours will be spent grinding cash for the ridiculously priced Golden Gloves. They cost 99,999,999 wealth.
  • The browser-based Tetris clone Blockbox requires you to complete 15 levels of Classic Mode before you can play any of the Tetris: The Grand Master-like modes. But a player who is good enough to survive for long in the TGM modes will have this licked well within a half hour.

    Racing Games 
  • Two of Criterion's racing games are offenders:
    • In Burnout Paradise, there is an event located at every traffic light intersection, and completing a certain amount will upgrade your license. However, the upgrade will also reset the events you completed to get there and allow you to play them again to contribute to the next license upgrade. This is great if you find a few events you're really good at and/or enjoy, but the final two licenses have such a high count to acquire that you'll almost certainly replay many events multiple times over the course of the game (getting the final license requires you to complete every single event once again).
    • Need for Speed: Most Wanted (2012) takes this a step further with the cars strewn about the city as well, with events that are associated to the cars themselves. Unfortunately there aren't enough events for a truly diverse pool of events, so completionists will replay the same collection of events up to six times or more on their way to 100%. Despite introducing brand new events, DLC events fall suspect to this as well with the cars they are introduced with.
  • Crash Team Racing and its Spiritual Successor Crash Nitro Kart took this trope and ran with it. Every track has three modes: Normal Race; CTR/NK Tokens, which require you to collect three tokens on the track while racing other opponents; and Relic Races, which place you alone on the track with a timer counting up and boxes that stop the timer for a certain amount of seconds. However, you only need to win the normal races and race all four bosses to race the final boss... But if you beat him, he then tells you that it didn't count and you now have to go and collect ALL of the Time Relics so you can race him again and actually beat the game. And considering the Time Relic Races can be downright Nintendo Hard at times, it'll be a while before you manage to beat the game.
    • And that's only half of the story! In order to unlock the final racetrack for Relic Races (The Turbo Track in CTR and Hyper Spaceway for CNK) you need to collect all five Gems. How is it that you get the gems, you may ask? Remember those token races? You have to go through what's otherwise a typical race while also collecting obtusely placed letters on the track and then finish in first place. This is oftentimes JUST AS Nintendo Hard as the Relic Races, as you almost always have to go out of your way to get some letters and then claw your way back up to first in time to finish the race and that's only with FOUR sets of tokens. The fifth, purple set requires you to do a teeth gnashingly frustrating Crystal Challenge where you have to collect 25 crystals sprawled out across one of the four battle tracks and protected by literal mazes of nitro crates and the like. Finally, after collecting ALL of a set of tokens, you unlock it's respective Gem Cup, a series of four races against plainly unfair computer opponents. Once you've done all of THAT, you can FINALLY unlock that final track, get that final relic, race the final boss again and win the game for real-real. Thankfully for those playing Nitro Kart (unless it's the GBA version), a glitch in the unlock system means the game only checks if you have the BLUE gem before granting access to the Hyper Spaceway. You'll miss out on the bonus characters unlocked through the gem cups, but when you just want to wrap things up(Especially if you've already beaten the game once with one team and are on your second playthrough with the opposite team to unlock True Velo), that glitch can save you HOURS of replaying races to get those stupid tokens. Those playing CTR have access to cheat codes on the title screen to immediately unlock all of the game's content.
  • Forza Motorsport pads out 100% completion with its Driver Titles and Badges, which are snippets of text and avatars displayed next to the user's name in game lobbies. Some are easy, such as reaching 88 miles per hour in a Delorean, while others are obnoxiously long, such as driving 1000 miles in a Toyota Prius.
  • Mario Kart :
    • Mario Kart 7 and Mario Kart 8 pad out the requirements to unlock kart parts to the extreme. Every part requires you collecting coins to unlock them. Some parts only need a few hundred coins while other parts can only be unlocked every few thousand coins. One of the final parts will force you to get 10,000 coins or more. Have fun playing the same tracks over and over again since you can only hold 10 coins max per race. The only consolation is that a few select parts can be unlocked (or at least be unlocked a bit faster) by winning races online and successfully connecting to another player with the StreetPass feature in 7, and by playing local multiplayer with three other players as their coins will be added to your total in 8. If you lack Wi-Fi and/or don't live in a dense city where you can run into someone who also has their StreetPass turned on, or you don't have friends to play with, then you will have to resort to coin collecting.
    • For most games, if you want all of the gold trophies, you have to 1st-place every cup on every engine class. This means if you go straight into 150 cc mode and get all of the golds for that class, you still need to go down to the easier classes for their trophies. This applies to star rankings as well. Mario Kart 8 finally alleviates this by giving you star and trophy credit for the class you earned them on and all classes below them as well, so that 150 cc 3-star gold trophy clear will now count for 50 cc and 100 cc too.
  • R4: Ridge Racer Type 4:
    • The game advertises itself as having 320 cars to unlock. However, there are only about 16 unique car designs in the entire game (4 tiers of cars * 4 manufacturers), and the number of cars stems from there being four teams with different tuning properties that have access to the same cars and the fact that for the first three tiers, you get one of three variants of a particular tier-manufacturer combo, all of which look exactly the same as each other. Moreover, finishing first in each race grants you only the best car unlocks; to unlock the rest, you have to Do Well, But Not Perfect and place 2nd or 3rd in some races. And finally, to unlock the final car and final BGM, you need to get all of the other cars first!
    • Opening up Classes 2 through 5 of Rage Racer is quite straightforward: Finish the prior class with 3rd place or higher on every track. Class 6, however, requires going through the Extra GP, which is Classes 1 through 5 all over again except with the tracks in reverse. Oh, and the reward for clearing the standard GP, which consists of maxing out your eg counter, as well as all those nice and shiny cars you spent millions of eg purchasing? None of them carry over to Extra GP; back to the basic Gnade Esperanza for you!
  • Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune may as well be called Fake Longevity: The Racing Game, and here's why:
    • In order to have a car that's fully-tuned and thus viable for competitive play, you need to complete Story Mode, which depending on the game consists of 60, 80, or 100 stages. And each stage uses up one credit. Given that one credit of the game typically costs at least 100 Japanese yen or 1 USD, that's enough money to buy a typical console game! Many unlocks require you to beat all of Story Mode without losing a single stage. In Maximum Tune 2 (until the Ver.B patch), this is required to earn the final tuning point for your car. In Maximum Tune 3, you do this to unlock the Wangan Midnight R soundtrack. Did you lose on the final stage? Time to do it all over again!
    • Some other unlocks require you to beat Story Mode multiple times. From Maximum Tune 4 onwards, you unlock one soundtrack for in-game use per playthrough, and in 4 there are three to unlock in this fashion (Maximum Tune 3, Maximum Tune 1 and 2, and Wangan Midnight R). Even though 4, 5, 5 DX, and 5 DX+ only have 60 stages per playthrough, that still means you have to play 240 credits at the bare minimum to unlock all the soundtracks. 5 DX+ revised the soundtracks so that Maximum Tune 4's soundtrack is now part of the unlocks, pushing the number of stages needed for a full soundtrack collection to 300. And that's before getting into Maximum Tune 6, which has 100 stages per loop. Hope you have a deep wallet and a lot of time!
    • And then there are unlocks that require multiple no-loss loops of Story Mode, namely the special tachometers. There are four to collect at the least, and of course losing a Story Mode stage at any point means having to play another 60 stages to unlock the remaining ones. Maximum Tune 6 slightly alleviates this by only requiring you to win enough stages in a row even if the win streak carries from one loop to the next. Problem is, "enough stages" equals 100 stages.
    • All of the unlocks and tuning, by the way, only apply to the car you get them on. If you make a new car, you have to start from scratch to get it to full tune and to get its unlocks. The only relief you get are a "Discarded vehicle card" that you can get from other players to get a 20-stage head start, and, in Japan only, a Full-Tune Ticket you can unlock that, when used, immediately gives you a full-tuned car of your choice, and even then that does not unlock anything else.

    Real Time Strategy 
  • In Eldritch Lands: The Witch Queen's Eternal War, unit dialogues are tied to the unit's level, and are unlocked at regular intervals. However, it's unlikely that the player will have every single unit in their roster at max level by the time they beat the final level, necessitating grinding the final level over and over to get the final dialogues. Downplayed, in that the player gets a huge pile of resources each time the final is cleared, and they have a chance to unlock a Purposely Overpowered unit to make it even easier.
  • Variant example: since it's history-based, Empire Earth advertised "500,000 years of gameplay." 450,000 of those years were in the stone age, which (as you can guess) doesn't let you do much.
  • Quite a few of the Achievements for Sins of a Solar Empire require you to deliberately stretch a match out in order to attain them. Particularly bad offenders are the destroy 1000 Pirates in a single game, destroy 2500 strikecraft in a single game, finding all the artefacts in a single game, or researching all of a tech tree in a single game.
  • Some RTS games, like Starcraft, have missions which require you to defend a base for a set period of time. Sometimes this requires you to sit around for at least thirty to forty five minutes waiting for the timer to run down.

    Rhythm Game 
  • DJMAX Online prevented you from playing any songs whose difficulty level was higher than your experience level, forcing you to grind levels to play more difficult songs. This was very frustrating for those experienced with beatmania or O2Jam, which the 5- and 7-key modes, respectively, played very similarly to.
  • Gitaroo Man has long, unskippable cutscenes at the start of many stages, which you must watch each time you lose and retry.
  • To unlock a song's Extra chart in Groove Coaster, you have to not only get an S rank on Hard, but also Simple and Normal difficulty as well, despite having demonstrated that you're good enough for the Extra chart and should not have to play charts that are far too easy for your level of skill. This might not be a problem for those who started with the easiest charts in the game, but it can be aggravating for players who jump straight to Hard due to prior rhythm game experience.
  • Each Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA consumer game forces you to play songs on Normal difficulty in order to unlock their Hard charts, and Hard charts to unlock their Extreme charts. Difficulty unlocks don't carry over from game to game, so players accustomed to Hard or Extreme difficulties have to slog through the two-buttons-only Normal charts all over again to play the four-button charts. Fortunately, this isn't the case in Project DIVA Arcade, where you're free to jump straight to Extreme off the bat as long as the song is unlocked.
    • Project DIVA Future Tone, the port of the Arcade version for PS4, takes this back a step. Easy through Hard difficutlies are unlocked at the start, but if you want to play songs on Extreme, you have to complete them on Hard first.

  • In NetHack, this is Gehennom. A pain beyond comprehension to map-out the standard way due to the presence of maze-like levels on almost every level, demons and even worse monsters than what was fought above, few lit rooms, the worst traps in the whole game everywhere, all of your good strategies start falling apart (pray for nutrition? hah!), and it just keeps going on for a good half of the dungeon. There are many tricks to making it to the bottom quickly but, once you're done with your business down there, you have to climb back up the hard way. On the soft side, Gehennom is behind a rather long series of random generated dungeons with plenty of interesting stuff, so at least it doesn't have to be tackled too often. On the hard side (that is obviously related to this trope), when trying to climb up from the bottom, one should be carrying the amulet that causes random level teleportations downwards - among other nasty things.

    Role Playing Game 
  • Anachronox uses many dirty tricks to pad out your playtime; dramatic camera sweeps during which you can't move or fill up your party's action meters, very large expanses between points A and B, anemic combat animations (even your basic attacks take several seconds, even if you miss) and unskippable cutscenes all add up more minutes to your clock than they should.
  • Bravely Default gets pretty ridiculous with this, because part of the plot involves the characters getting caught in a loop and returning to the beginning of the game, necessitating revisiting all of the main dungeons and fighting the bosses again. In order to get the Golden Ending you need to go through this process FOUR TIMES. One of the features touted for the Updated Re-release was the cutting of around 40 hours of gameplay, not by removing content, but by streamlining the endgame and adding the ability to speed up and skip battles.
  • Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter would not show all the various plot-expounding cutscenes on the first playthrough. Or the second. No, if you wanted to actually see all of the plot, you were expected to play through the game three full times. This wasn't that the game forced you to pick between seeing two different things to create a sort of branching story, or requiring certain in-game conditions to have been met so that a skilled player could see it all in one go. It would instead just count the number of times you'd played through and would only show you the plot details if you had the required number of completions when you reached the part of the game that would trigger it.
  • In early versions of Cyberpunk 2077, the cyberpsycho minibosses followed the same rules as any other NPC, allowing players to use the environment to their advantage and bypass their boss fights entirely with stealth takedowns. However, patches later removed this by doing things like putting a platform above the one at Seaside Cafe to prevent you from using Hidden Dragon, or making it so that the one in "Letter of the Law" can't be one-shot by the crate trap anymore.
  • The DS versions of the Digimon World games take this to rarely seen levels. The games are extremely straightforward, following a pattern of running throught simple areas, defeating a boss, then go back to the city and talk to certain characters, follow with a short cutscene and unlock a new area to explore. However, the games have a extremely high random encounter rate, and the bosses will prove to be too strong to the player if he doesn't take a good hour grinding on the areas before the boss. The later areas also have a maze-like design with several dead-ends with no reward whatsoever, wich become extremely tedious and time-consuming to navigate due to the random encounters that can't be avoided.
    • Missions that involve talking with more than one NPC in the areas become very tedious because you must talk to them in order, and NPC B will not appear until you have met NPC A. This is especially frustrating if NPC B is set to appear at a point before NPC A, since the first time you go throught NPC B's spot, it will be empty.
  • In the original set of .hack// games, Virus Core hunting. You want to crack on with the story? Sorry, you need to go and Data Drain a bunch of trivial enemies in the hopes that they randomly drop the Virus Cores needed to get into the area.
  • Dragon Quest:
    • The first few games have loads and loads of grinding (1 has been mathematically shown to be unwinnable under any remotely normal conditionsnote  until level 17, as the final boss does more damage than you can heal until then). All of them feature hordes of boring random battles that are usually very easy to beat, but take a long time to actually fight (and 8 adds slow and unskippable animations into the mix), endless Big-Lipped Alligator Moment style fetch quests, which involve randomly running around trying to find the person you need to talk to (often several), and then figuring out the bizarre and illogical places you need to use Quest items. Averted with many of the later ones, where a well-rounded party/skillset won't need to grind as much with good use of buffs and debuffs.
    • Thankfully averted in Dragon Quest Monsters, removing all the insane quests, speeding up the battle system, and making the random battles mean something. Joker still has long animations though.
    • Finding all six of the orbs in Dragon Quest III without a walkthrough can be near-impossible to some people, as they're scattered all over the world map, and the only hints you have are random tidbits of information from various townsfolk and a flute that you can play to see if an orb is in the area. This can lead to a lot of wandering if you haven't been keeping notes physically or via the Recall ability.
    • Dragon Quest IX has the grotto system, a way to create a pseudo-infinite amount of Randomly Generated Levels. Except that the dungeons themselves are remarkably boring and empty, finding them is a matter of remembering certain geographical features, the high-end items have a single-digit chance of appearing (a calculation showed that even stealing items has a 1 in 8 chance of working, if the relevant stats are maxed out), the skill to detect treasure chests doesn't work on grotto chests, getting the best maps requires to get your main character to level 99 no less than 11 times... What's that? There's a plethora of new quests to download that go further into the world's backstory? Except the servers are now shut down, good luck with that.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • Morrowind
      • Morrowind lacks the series' standard map based fast travel, so you need to rely on either fixed-location transportation (boats, silt striders) or one-way teleportation (spells and scrolls). The northeastern side of the map has very few fast travel points so you will end up doing a lot of walking towards your objectives in that area. There are no quest markers so you have to rely on notes and NPC directions (which are not always accurate). This makes it easy to get lost finding your objective.
      • Your movement speed is dependent on your athletics skill which slowly increases the more you run in the game. Unfortunately this can make your character move at a snail's pace if they have low athletics which can be worsened if they are wearing heavy armor. This makes moving around the map very tedious at early levels especially if you don't have any teleportation spells or scrolls.
    • Oblivion both averts the trope and plays it straight in different instances. On the one hand, the sandbox world allows an awesome degree of exploration and many side-quests to find. On the other hand, the main quest/plotline is about four hours long if you focus on it and rush through. And to make things even more confusing, partaking in the length-enhancing activities is optional and does not contribute anything to your ability to complete the main quest. In fact, due to a lopsided case of Rubber-Band A.I. and Empty Levels, it is easier to finish the game if you do so as early as possible and without distractions than it is after some secondary adventuring. The end result is that there is a lot of longevity present, but it is only "fake" when taken in the context of the main plot. And you need to clear multiple Oblivion Gates to beat the main quest, of which there are only seven maps. On top of it, they are 99% empty of rewards with a lone Random Drop sigil stone at the end.
    • Skyrim:
      • Almost every quest requires you to run a tremendous distance which in turn has a probability to meet randomly spawning dragons, or clear a cave, keep or tomb full of random enemies that mostly aren't even related to this quest's story. There's a chance to kill an enemy with a finishing move forcing you to wait for the animation to end. It also requires you to grind lots and lots of ingredients to level alchemy, which is done by combining those ingredients correctly, thus meeting the criteria for Item Crafting, Grinding and Combinatorial Explosion. Since you've discovered all of Skyrim in a short period of time, running through it again may be considered Back Tracking. Most enemies have a Fake Difficulty, killing the player with two hits unless he's got lots of health potions. While its dungeons are more variable than Oblivion's, they still often look and feel the same, especially if it comes to claw riddles. It's overall promise of 500 hours of game time are only to be achieved by this trope. Thank Arkay for fast travel. It's most noticable in any quest where a fellow faction member offers to show you to your "quarters", which is usually down a long hallway that they've decided to slowly walk to. Or if a scripted scene has all the essential characters talking and marked "busy". "Waiting" usually doesn't help since these are scripted events.
      • It's especially bad in the Dawnguard expansion, where your faction's base is always situated in one of the corners of the map, requires you to travel to the opposite corner — literally the longest Euclidean distance in the game — at least twice, and requires visiting specific quest locations on the far west, far north, and far east sides of the map as well. With "needs" mods installed it can become extremely tedious to spend several in-game days' worth of travel time just running back and forth. The storyline is actually pretty decent, particularly for anyone who loves the Elder Scrolls lore, although it is probably lost as meaningless on anyone who just wants to have a fun time.
  • Fallout 3 has many, many locations only be accessible by going through a subway tunnel. In a couple instances, you must go through at least three tunnels to reach the destination. The subway tunnels are cut and pasted from the same handful of sections with very minimal changes between them. They are also filled with always hostile NPCs. They serve no real purpose, but exist to make quests seem longer. Without the tunnel sections, a lot of quests are about 2 minutes long once you actually reach your destination.
  • Fallout: New Vegas was designed with similar tricks, as no-clipping above the map will reveal. Here, the main overworld itself is divided into cells by insurmountable hills or cliffs and connected by limited pathways to allow for dynamic loading. Beef gates are added to many of these passes to discourage sequence breaking. The titular city has gateways connecting its cells, which beats going through subway tunnels. PC mods also exist that combine area of Freeside and The Strip into single giant cells.
  • To summarize the endgame of Final Fantasy III (both DS and NES version): Last Inn, Long Dungeon, Last Save Point, Long Dungeon, Long Cutscene, Difficult Boss, Long Dungeon with 4 bosses, Difficult Final Boss. Die at the final boss and you've wasted 3-4 hours! (you cannot backtrack to the savepoint any time after the first boss in the sequence). It's even worse when you actually get to the final boss and discover it has one attack: Flare Wave (Particle Beam in the remake), which does 2000+ damage to all your characters every round. If you're level 50 (which takes some time), that's more than half your max HP.
  • Final Fantasy VI gives you a lot of access to endgame spells at, well, the end of the game, along with one of them that's not accessible until midway through the final level. Many players are tempted to spend time grinding them out to learn on multiple characters, and due to the low learn rate of these spells, this can add hours and hours of additional playtime. Not to mention making a variety of chains of bets in the coloseum, learning Strago's blue magic spells (most of which are in the final dungeon as well), learning Gau's various rages which are heavily influenced by the Random Number God, and you can easily spend 40-50 hours to beat the game when it's reasonably doable in less than 30 as the final boss is rather easy.
  • A minor example is the White SeeD Ship in Final Fantasy VIII. You're given very vague directions: an inlet on a continent that's nothing but inlets. There are no battles or time limit to give this any challenge, you really are just wandering aimlessly until you stumble upon the location where the next bit of plot happens. Or Google a map because you can't be bothered with mindless filler.
  • Final Fantasy XI manages to combine this with Forced Level-Grinding by having achievements for maxing out each individual class. It can take months to achieve level 75 with one class, there are 20 of these achievements. There's also a 30G achievement for completing a relic weapon, which takes years to do, requiring millions upon millions of in-game currency (or real money, if you're that desperate). All of the achievements, when the game was released, required at least one 75 job to achieve (things like gaining maximum rank for all three nations, completing expansion story lines, clearing several endgame areas), and it can easily take a year for a new player to reach the maximum level, let alone clear all the missions.
    The problem was slightly alleviated when the Wings of the Goddess expansion brought with it 250 more points, most of which for things that were actually attainable in a reasonable amount of time for the average player (acquiring a subjob or getting a chocobo license - levels 18 and 20, respectively). Even still, it takes insane amounts of dedication if you really want that 1250/1250 score for Final Fantasy XI. Probably the worst part is that every achievement is secret, meaning that nobody who hasn't already done the things you've done will even know that you did them, removing the entire point of the achievements completely. Game Informer found a guy who had 1250 gamerpoints in the game and interviewed him. He said "It wasn't worth it."
    Most of these time sinks were eliminated almost ten years after the game's release with the release of the Abyssea mini expansions which for the first time in the game's history increased the level cap from 75 to 99. A job can now be grinded from level 30 to 99 in as little as 10-12 hours by leeching exp off max level players (if you don't mind being very gimp when you hit 99). Level capped mission fights which used to take tedious amounts of time and effort to get past have had their caps removed making it very easy to solo old storylines. The aforementioned Relics can now be completed in as little as a month if you religiously spend 2 hours every day farming, or just a couple days if you have money to blow. Even travel, which used to be a nightmare, has been trivialized with the introduction of a warp shortcut to almost any zone in the game, several taking you to locations which used to be very difficult to reach. The only real forced time sink left is Mythic weapons which take at least 6 months to complete thanks to requiring repeatedly completing content which requires a key item to enter, you only get 1 key item per day.
  • Final Fantasy XII
    • The Quickenings, while not all that long if only one is launched, really start to become tedious when launching a giant chain of them.
    • Mark hunting, though (almost) entirely optional, can be prone to this. Some of the Marks you search for require extensive Dungeon Crawling (or re-crawling), Level Grinding, and searching for hidden items and pathways. Even finding some of the marks can be a hassle (Montblanc's wonderfully vague information on the whereabouts of "Belito" come to mind).
    • Barheim passage, for the 'wandering through pointless side passages' to find the gate switches.
    • The Great Crystal at Giruvegan is all too easy to get lost in and wander for hours, especially if you're going for the sidequests and Espers, thanks to its very unconventional map layout and bizarre non-indicative (at least at first) room names. The wiki has an entire subsection dedicated to how to orient yourself in there.
  • Final Fantasy XIII-2 has fragment collecting. Some of them come from fun bosses or interesting side quests. Others don't:
    • Starting with the one the internet is fixated on, there's filling out the bestiary. This can actually be fairly fun at times, if you have the fragment skills that manipulate encounter rate and chances of getting rare encounters, as you'll come across some interesting enemies you might have missed otherwise, and it gives a sense of purpose to the grinding you'd be doing to take on the optional bosses. But then there's all the time you'll spend wiping out ludicrously out-levelled enemies waiting for a rare one to spawn. Or having to go through the already annoying final dungeon twice.
    • One fragment requires winning 7777 coins through the slots. This can take hours and is barely interactive.
    • Captain Cryptic requires you to track him down at random location in a large and twisty map repeatedly. Even if you know all the possible locations (and let's face it, anyone that's going for 100% Completion in this game is using a guide) it still takes far too long.
    • A number of important items are hidden in extremely out-of-the-way treasure spheres that can only be reached by a perfectly aimed moogle throw. Beyond just the trial and error required here, Mog takes forever to return after each try. Some of the trickier ones can take minutes to get.
  • Golden Sun:
    • The series is infamous for its needlessly long and wordy Unskippable Cutscenes. Especially annoying for the final boss of the first installment, which had two forms and was preceded by an incredibly long dialogue scene. At least it allows saving anywhere, and with the E-shop rerelease, you don't need to worry about your GBA's batteries running out during your battle anymore...
    • During a battle, characters lose their turns if their target gets defeated before they can attack. It's played for 'strategy' but in reality, random battles take longer than they have any right to if you just want to mash the attack button (no 'auto' option). Thankfully, the sequels switch to the attack moving to another target.
  • Kingdom Hearts:
    • The final boss of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories has a predictable and repetitive pattern of easy-to-avoid attacks. Unfortunately, you can only hurt him during a small time window at one point in the pattern. And he has four health bars.
    • Arendelle in Kingdom Hearts III. As if including the entirety of "Let It Go" wasn't enough, Sora and co. are trying to climb one mountain but keep getting interrupted or knocked down by random events to drag the world out further. Examples include navigating an ice dungeon, a lengthy sledding minigame immediately followed by a miniboss, or finding Olaf's body parts.
  • You really have to wonder about the Dracoid Cemetery and Dracoid Ruins in Lands of Lore 2. In the cemetery, you'll find glass orbs lying around. You need to charge these at three different machines, which turn them white, blue or yellow, to open the crypts in the cemetery, which will only accept specific colors of orbs. Inside the crypts you'll find new orbs to charge. Two of the machines are underneath the cemetery, another is in the ruins, which is a huge level. When you've opened all the crypts, you'll have to fulfill quests for two dracoid ghosts which once again involve traversing those enormous ruins, which mostly consist of empty space. It's a very drawn-out and tedious sequence in an otherwise fun and immersive game.
  • The Legend of Dragoon ticks a lot of the longevity boxes, but what makes it stand out is that bosses often use attacks with lengthy animations (sometimes getting off two of them between your characters' turns), which take out a significant chunk of your HP. Your inventory for healing items is very small, but in exchange you can defend to take half damage from incoming attacks and healing yourself by 10% of your maximum HP. SO many boss fights devolve into you defending for multiple turns to build your HP up high enough to survive a couple of unhalved attacks (sometimes with animations of 15 seconds or longer). Oh, and since most random encounters give trivial amounts of XP, attempting to grind your way around this problem might take even longer.
  • Lunar: Dragon Song attempted to extend gameplay in addition to "add realism" by adding an option to gain either experience points or items from battle, adding side quests related to Jian and Lucia's job as Gad's Express delivery men and causing minimal but continuous damage when running. The result of this caused many players to groan because all this achieved was making the game more of a chore by having to fight twice as many battles than necessary to gain both items needed for fetch quests and the experience to level up so you won't die trying (with the reminder of many other Role Playing Games who were perfectly fine length and gameplay-wise with awarding players both items and experience per battle). It's possible to beat the game while skipping the deliveries, bar your first one, but besides selling items they're the only source of money, which may be necessary to grind for in the all too likely event of good items getting stolen or destroyed by Demonic Spiders. At least the battles themselves can be sped up, or even automated.
  • Mario & Luigi: Dream Team has Hard Mode + unskippable cut scenes. Unlike Normal Mode, if you mess up and die, you get sent back to the title screen and have to go through the whole sequence before the fight without any way to skip it.
  • Mass Effect:
    • Getting all of the achievements, especially the ally achievements, requires no less than 3 playthroughs. And these aren't the "do whatever is necessary to get to the end of the game" playthroughs, but full playthroughs, requiring doing the side missions as well as the required story missions.
    • 100% completion required visiting a ton of planets which consist of a few square kilometers of rocks, crags, and general time-wasting. Some of them have hidden side-quests that have nothing to do with any of the plots. In the same vein, the Plot Tumor Cerberus, which plays a huge role later in the series, is found this way. Most of their bases are hidden on random worlds.
    • The Citadel elevator rides took at least a minute, even if your machine could load the next area much faster. Thankfully, there are taxi cabs waiting around to let you go places for free.
    • BioWare learned their lesson in the sequel; it's possible to get most of the achievements in one playthrough, but expect to encounter this if you want the Golden Ending. You'll need to gather resources and money beyond the basics by planet-scanning, a feature largely panned by the fans. Despite that, it was generally faster than the Mako sequences it replaced.
    • Mass Effect 3 boasts a "Galaxy At War", which has a "Readiness Rating." This number determines the quality of your ending. If it's not high enough, no good ending for you. Before a patch getting the best ending through Single Player alone was basically impossible, which forced you into the new multiplayer mode. Even worse, as long as your computer is connected to the internet, the rating slowly ticks down.
  • In the fourth game of the Mega Man Battle Network series, you need to play through the story a minimum of three times to get everything, with potentially no limit on how many additional playthroughs are required depending on which opponents the game decides to match you up with in the Tournament Arc segments. This is made worse by the fact that the different scenarios you get based on your opponents all require multiple fetch quests and tons of backtracking, and you'll most likely have to repeat at least one of them on every playthrough.
    • The first Battle Network, likewise, requires you to constantly run back and forth in similar locations, particularly the Waterworks.
  • Paper Mario: Color Splash: Collecting a Mini Paint Star will kick you back to the world map to show you a new path being unlocked. Usually, this isn't bad, but there are two instances of Mini Paint Stars being placed very close to each other.
    • Mossrock Theater has three Mini Paint Stars, two right next to each other in a room near the end. Thus, you'll have to go through a majority of the level three times to get them all. However, these two are thankfully optional, unlocking shortcuts to previous levels you've beaten (and, if you've collected Roshambo Tokens #7 and #8, the paths enable you to reach the seventh and eighth Roshambo Temples).
    • Kiwano Temple, already being a very hard level, is one you have to go through twice with no changes. Unlike Mossrock Theater, it's mandatory to get all the Mini Paint Stars here.
  • Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door:
    • One segment near the last quarter of the game has Mario seek out General White, an NPC that can help him get to the Moon. You travel to the location where he was last seen, only to be told by another NPC that you just missed the guy and they tell you where he went. This repeats several more times as you literally have to travel to every single major location you visited throughout the game and this can span over 30 minutes between the walking and the cut scenes showing your vehicle taking off to another region. To add more insult to injury, General White returns to your starting point, falls asleep, and you have to hit him in order to wake him up a couple of times. There is also a sidequest involving General White that basically has you repeat the goose chase a second time.
    • Every time you try to fight the Final Boss, you first must sit through a long cutscene of the boss being revived. Then you engage in what turns out to be a Hopeless Boss Fight, as she turns invincible after exchanging a few blows (hope you didn't waste any of your consumable items!). And then you get an even longer scene of the characters you met on your journey helping to break the invincibility. Only after all this can you fight the boss. And this is a massive difficulty spike over the rest of the game, so it's very easy to die and have to sit through the whole scene from the beginning. None of the cutscenes can be skipped, and if you're mashing buttons to power through the dialogue you may accidentally say "yes" to the boss' We Can Rule Together offer for an instant Non Standard Game Over.
    • The fourth chapter is very bad about this. When you defeat the chapter's boss, you'll find that you have to go from Twilight Town to the Creepy Steeple through the Twilight Trail again. And again. You have to go through that trail four times, and the enemies there are experts in wasting your time.
  • Pokémon battles, especially in the later generations, are so flippin' slow it boggles the mind. It's not even that they take that long — once you get further along in the game, most of your Mons can destroy any basic enemy in one or two hits. And it still takes a frustratingly long time to beat any battle.
    • The Fight Woosh is particularly obnoxious, since it can't be disabled and easily accounts for half of the time you spend in caves or tall grass.
    • Diamond and Pearl were the biggest offenders, to the point that one of the main features of Platinum is that the game is notably faster. The battles were insanely slow, even when disabling the animations, and you couldn't skip anything with the buttons. In fact, if you wanted to use the buttons instead of the stylus, you had to press them twice. If that's not enough for you, remember that Surfing was as slow as regular walking. In a water route with loads of trainers with several Pokémon each, you could easily get your whole team knocked out in desperation. Thank goodness for Repel...
    • The fourth-generation games were also somewhat infamous for overusing the HM mechanic, especially with relation to Rock Smash, the move that lets you break small rocks that block your path. Some areas have multiple tiny rocks in a row, which means walking up to each one, selecting Rock Smash, and then watching a short animation play. Having one rock would be exactly as difficult and serve the exact same purpose, but it wouldn't waste as much time.
    • And Black and White FINALLY address this by having HP drain being near instant, so battles are now so fast it's been compared to taking a battle in Diamond and Pearl and putting it on fast forward several times over. And without animations, battles are practically just as fast as you can read and push buttons.
    • Pokémon Stadium eases the pain by having unlockables that can double and quadruple your game speed when you play in the Game Boy Tower.
    • In Generation I, you had to spend a few minutes watching the credits roll through (after beating the Elite Four) before the game was saved. Changed in later games so the game would save before the credits, but every time you would level grind a little against the E4, you would still have to listen to their speeches, which is mindnumbingly boring after, well, once.
    • In Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen, in order to get the National Dex to reach islands 4 through 7, rebattle the Elite Four, and trade with Hoenn you need to obtain 60 of the 151 Pokémon found in Kanto. Nowhere in the game is the number 60 impliednote  and without trading with another remake, or catching as many as you can as you go, it will still take a good hour or two to get 60 darn species.
      • Of course, 60 is relatively easy if you've been catching things the entire game. You'd have to be trying, or doing a challenge run, to not have 60 or close to that by the end.
    • In DPPt you need to see every Pokémon in the Sinnoh Dex to activate Pal Park, which lets you retrieve your old Pokémon from the GBA games. This task basically amounts to "realize which Trainer battles you skipped and spend hours trying to find them.
      • One of the Pokémon, Drifloon, can only be seen twice in the game: Once in an optional trainer battle that is lost forever by the time you get to the end of the game, and a wild one that only appears on Friday. In other words, if you don't want to cheat, you could end up waiting six days to open up Pal Park.
      • Combee was almost as bad as Drifloon; found on only one optional trainer outside Veilstone City, or you have to take the time to do the Scrappy Mechanic of slathering Honey on Honey Trees in the hopes that Combee appears after waiting up to six for the tree to start shaking.
    • There is also Repel so you can avoid most wild battles. However, Repel works based on the level of your Pokémon on top of your party list VS the general level of the wild Pokémon in the area. If you really want to get someplace without any encounters, put your highest level Pokémon in the top slot. The way Repel works does have an advantage that ends up saving time, however — starting with Pokémon Gold and Silver, some legendary Pokémon would roam the overworld among randomly encountered Pokémon and using a Repel would make it easier to encounter them if they end up in an area with lower-level Pokémon if the top party member was at a level higher than regular random encounters but lower than the roaming Pokémon. Until Diamond and Pearl added the ability to see where they were before running into them (originally they could only be tracked if they're seen once, they run away, and their location is checked in the Pokédex), this made finding them easier.
    • Gamefreak has a tendency to use the Battle Tower format to pad out an otherwise completely barren post-game. It uses copious amounts of Fake Difficulty and the promise of a flashy super trainer waiting for you at the end to hide the fact that it basically amounts to having lots and lots of repetitive battles. Probably at its most egregious in ORAS which hides actual post game content behind the Battle Maison.
  • Super Paper Mario:
    • After breaking a vase allegedly belonging to Mimi in Chapter 2-3, you're put into slave labor to grind for a form of currency only she accepts. The intended way to complete this chapter is to open a safe that contains all the money you need, but on your first playthrough you won't know the code to open it, and the only way to learn the code without cheating (since it's the same code every time on every copy) is by grinding enough money to pay an NPC to tell you what it is. As for the grinding itself, your only initial option is to jump and hit a block repeatedly, and you can pay an NPC to get a code allowing access to a room where you run on a hamster wheel.
    • In Chapter 5-1, you have to punch in a 25-input long block-hitting combination to reveal a pipe. To get the combination, you have to go back to the town at the start of the chapter and type "please" five times for an NPC to tell it to you.
    • Chapter 6 of the game has you go 20 fights into a hundred fight challenge, and then run through a featureless blank hallway for about a minute shortly after that.
    • Although it is an optional area, the Flopside Pit of 100 Trials will not give any reward for clearing it the first time. Instead, you are informed that you will be only be rewarded if you complete it again.
  • In Super Robot Wars: Original Generation, later Bosses often take utterly ludicrous amounts of damage to bring down. In a game where 10000 HP is extremely good for a playable character, bosses can easily have hundreds and hundreds of thousands of HP. And more often than not, they have various energy fields that significantly reduce the amount of damage they take per attack.
    • Not to mention the often overly long attack animations. This was especially bad in early installments when they couldn't be skipped.
    • The series is kind compared to many games in that each section of text appears all at once rather than slowly scrolling in. However, while you can button-mash through cut scenes, you can't skip them altogether, except in the latest games, and even then it's only the intermissions. You can fast-forward them at least.
  • Tales of Symphonia advertises "80 hours of gameplay!" on the box. This is because the actual storyline of the game takes about forty hours to beat on a normal playthrough, and then there's a New Game Plus. The unskippable text during skits doesn't help.
  • Tales of Xillia 2 has an early plot point that involves racking up a 20 million gald debt. Most of the game is spent working this debt off, and once you do, you get hit with an even larger debt! And it's not like you can ignore it, either; you have to pay off a certain amount of debt every so often to continue on with the main plotline.
  • Every story enemy in Touhou Pocket Wars has an insane quantity of hit points, and many of them have spammable, repeatable, uncapped "Defense Up" or "Full Heal" abilities. One battle can take an hour, and the A.I. Roulette is the only thing that makes some of them beatable at all without Level Grinding until you achieve a One-Hit Kill.
  • Valkyria Chronicles II, in regards to the processes of upgrading troops and researching new weapons.
    • Troops start out in a base class. They can upgrade to one of two classes, one of which is a better version of the base, the other a specialization, such as a Scout going to either a Scout Veteran (more HP/movement/evasion) or a Sniper (weaker stats but get a sniper rifle). These two each have their own further upgrades, for a total of 4 level 3 specializations. To convert to a new class, the character has to have acquired a number of credits from being used in various missions, and each of the 4 types of credits (Arms, Attack, Support, March) has 4 different levels (e.g. Arms, Arms X, Arms II, Arms II X). These are randomly distributed at the end of each battle, and while the top 2 performers get more credits than everyone else, they may not get the ones they need, e.g. a troop only needing one more Arms II X instead getting 3 sets of 2 Arms X. While each conversion only takes at most 3 different types of credit (e.g. 3 Arms, 1 Support II, 1 March II X), plus a Certificate or Diploma (distributed like the other credits, but fairly rare for a good portion of the game), it can take a long time to get the right distribution for a good portion of your squad.
    • Each class usually has several different types of weapons, with many specializations having weapons that only they can use. For example, Scouts, Scout Veterans, and Scout Elites use regular rifles, Heavy Scouts use advanced rifles, Snipers use regular sniper rifles, Sniper Elites use advanced sniper rifles, and Anti-Tank Snipers use anti-tank siper rifles. Each type of weapon has a base model that goes from level 1 to level 10 and costs just money to upgrade. There's usually at least 2 other versions of this weapon that have special benefits, such as a rifle that fires 7 shots compared to the standard 5, or a rifle that has lower attack power but can confer negative status effects on enemies. There's 10 levels of each of these, as well. To build one of the non-standard ones, you need a part that's unique to that weapon type; a regular rifle needs some type of Rifle Part, while advanced rifles need some sort of Rifle+ Part, a sniper rifle needs a Sniper Scope, etc. You get one, and only one, of these from beating a battle, which can take anywhere from a few to 15 minutes depending on which one it is. Each battle drops a specific part. There are usually 4 different grades of parts (A-D), with higher grades being used on the higher levels of weapon. You also need materials, which have 5 different levels with 4 different grades (harder battles drop higher grades) and which are also somewhat randomly dropped; while each map type generally gives a specific type of material, you could need 5 more Steel 4 Type B and wind up getting a whole lot of Steel 4 Types A, B, and D. While it's not necessary to upgrade all the weapons (most of them aren't very useful, and weapons dropped by special enemies tend to be better), even getting the ones you want can take much longer than it should because of all the randomness.
    • There are also some points in the game where you are forced to play the "optional" Free Missions in order to progress the main storyline.
  • Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land gets it due to slow combats you can only skip by physically avoiding the enemy, which isn't always possible. Even running will waste about 15 seconds or so each time. Combat rounds often take a minute or more start to finish.
  • The sidequests in Xenoblade Chronicles 1, there are literally hundreds of them, a lot of them are just 20 Bear Asses or Mass Monster-Slaughter Sidequest. There are also the collectibles in each area, there are dozens for each area, they spawn mostly randomly, and they don't do much unless you like grinding for Relationship Values, which is another thing that makes the game longer.
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2:
    • Blade affinity charts have many nodes of the 20 Bear Asses or Mass Monster-Slaughter Sidequest variety. However, most of those can be essentially skipped over by sending characters off on merc missions, meaning most end up being unnecessary, even for 100% completion.
    • Played straight with Vess and Ursula's affinity charts. Maxing out Vess requires using her crafting skill 100 times, which means tracking down hundreds of miscellaneous items. Ursula's requires a long series of merc missions, which even under optimal conditions takes 16 hours. It can at least be done while playing the game normally, but that means getting interrupted by sending off new missions every few minutes.
    • In the prequel/Expansion Pack Torna ~ The Golden Country, there are two points in the game where the main story stops while the party has to go around raising the community level, which feels especially like this if the player has been avoiding sidequests up to this point.
  • Xenogears is infamous for unskippable text (inexcusable given that even 8-bit titles such as Dragon Quest had adjustable text speed), which makes the game go on longer than it should have.
  • Your Bizarre Adventure lacks any sort of fast travel system, meaning that players often have to trek between NPCs to progress the story. One particularly glaring example comes when Trisha asks the player to defeat a boss who's located near the train station, a ways away from her. After finishing this task, you must then walk all the way back to her... upon which she directs you towards another boss located inside the train station, necessitating even more backtracking.

  • The Army Men spin-off, Green Rogue, is a notorious offender when it comes to copying and pasting backgrounds, areas, and enemies — the exact same kind — over and over and over again, in order to make the game feel longer. It's fun shooting an endless stream of enemies for fifteen minutes, but nearly an hour into the game, you're still battling the same type of mooks, again and again, with barely anything new. Youtube's World of Longplays uploaded a playthrough and despite finishing every level at maximum speed and dying zero times, it still took them two hours and twenty minutes to finish the game — a reasonable length for an RPG, but absolutely not for a straightforward shooter.
  • Dariusburst Another Chronicle's Chronicle Mode is touted to have "3,000 stages". However, in reality, those are 3,000 missions that take place over the preexisting 24 stages, with some variations in enemies, attacks, stage permutations, and mandatory ship selections. Perhaps to alleviate this, individual cabinets save progress for everyone who plays on the machine, so that players can collaborate together, and the consumer ports allow players to play on "virtual cabinets" with other players. Dariusburst Chronicle Saviours is a lower-ratio example, boasting 200 missions across these preexisting stages.
  • Project Overkill (1996) is another offender, having repetitive environments (all of them set indoors - the prison, laboratories, warehouse and whatever levels looking exactly the same from one another), cut-and-paste enemies, pointlessly lengthy levels, back-and-forth, excessively huge areas taking entire minutes just walking from one point to another, and sections you can't access without killing everything, forcing you to repeatedly backtrack in and out of an area. All of them rendered in the same drab, dull, brown-and-grey colour palette with waves and waves of identical mooks using the same recycled death animations. The developers pretty much put whatever efforts in the game's making into the gorn factor (evidenced by the Gory Deadly Overkill Title of Fatal Death) and forgot to invest in the gameplay, quality, and everything else.
  • Touhou Eiyashou ~ Imperishable Night has ridiculous requirements for unlocking the Last Words (one bonus Spell Card for each character). To get all of them, you have to complete the game with all four teams with the bad ending, complete it again with all four teams with the true ending, and complete it with two solo characters (at least when you unlock solo characters, you can get the true ending with them on your first playthrough). And then there are a few more with really quirky unlock conditions, like beating all Normal difficulty Spell Cards with solo Marisa.
  • Sol Cresta's Dramatic Mode is about twice as long as Arcade Mode, in order to fit in a fully-voice-acted narrative. It accomplishes this by adding sections where there are only point rings and harmless ground targets, in an attempt to give the player something to do during dialogue-heavy sections that isn't mentally intensive.

    Simulation Game 
  • Air Force Delta Strike plays this straight with the Stand-By missions. Fortunately, they're skippable.
  • All of the Animal Crossing games do this when you have to pay off your house. Each upgrade to the house has a bigger price tag than the last, which will resort to you farming fruit, bugs, fish, and fossils for quick money and collecting random junk you receive from neighbors in order to sell them for money. There are also the stalk market (selling turnips for a profit) and planting money bags with the Golden Shovel in order to make a one time money tree, but those are generally risky and could make the player lose out on everything they invested.
    • You could just input an item code in Tom Nook's shop for 300 Turnips each day. Much like forgery, this can get you money very quickly. Unlike forgery, you will never be penalized. Unfortunately, this only removes money as a pad, there's still fishing, insect catching, and making your town "perfect" for the illusive Golden Tools.
  • Harvest Moon: The Tale of Two Towns annoyed long-time players of the Harvest Moon series by limiting farm upgrades to once a month, then making it so that storyline requests (like clearing the tunnel between the titular towns) take priority. Ditto for tools. It can take more than three in-game years to upgrade your tools and farm. Did we mention there are two farms - each of which has equipment the other doesn't? And you can only work on one of those farms at a time? 100% Completion can take upwards of eight in-game years (In most other HM games, this would take five at the most).
  • The Rune Factory series need a measure of Stat Grinding to win, but Rune Factory 3 adds a unique one —- it only lets players complete a maximum of three tasks per day. Said tasks take minutes to complete, normally, and are essential to making friends/courting villagers.
  • The most common accusation leveled against The Sims 2: University is that getting a Sim through college is a needlessly long and tedious project. Really, the same thing could have been achieved with two semesters instead of eight.

    Stealth Based Game 
  • The Assassin's Creed series is a notorious offender:
    • Assassin's Creed was probably the strongest example, with the flag collection and Templar killing side quests/achievements. 420 small flags spread across the game, which are not always easy to see, let alone reach. They do not appear on any in-game maps, and there's no player-accessible method of keeping track of which ones have been obtained. Even using a guide, if the player has collected any flags and hasn't kept careful track of where they were, the player must revisit every location just to make sure. In addition, 60 Templar Knights are also spread out and hidden around.
    • Starting with Assassin's Creed II and in every game since, the large quantities of collectibles (usually treasure chests, though Unity also has "artifacts", "cockades", "sync points") are still out there, but they emit a helpful sound when nearby, they appear on in-game maps, and they disappear from the map once collected, making it much easier to keep track of them and avoid having to visit each location more than once. They still qualify, though: The time spent collecting them all will add hours to gameplay time, potentially even doubling it for gamers who only did story missions during their playthrough.
  • Metal Gear:
    • The series is infamous for its long cutscenes, at times annoying bosses, and having to eternally lie around until the guards gets in the right position to shoot them. If it was a mere hit and run game it'd be done in two or so hours, just rushing through and killing whatever gets in your way. You can skip cutscenes and even run and gun your way through everything, but, being a series of stealth games, this playstyle isn't rewarded.
    • Metal Gear Solid:
      • At one point the plot requires you to backtrack to an earlier part of the game and back again, as you need a sniper rifle in order to face Sniper Wolf. The Gamecube remake made the backtracking mercifully shorter. Instead of going all the way to the armory for the sniper rifle, just hit floor B1 in the Nuke Storage Building (which you'd be going through anyway). There's a tranquilizer version of the sniper rifle, which is more than good enough to take on Sniper Wolf. There are even hints that it will be there shortly before your fight with Mantis — the ammo for it shows up before the weapon itself does.
      • There's also a section near the end of the game where you're required to input three cards to deactivate a weapon. The only way to get the two cards you don't enter with is to travel, manually, back to previous sections of the game and wait there until the card changes into the required one. Again, a quicker option was included in the GameCube version that involves shooting at steam and coolant pipes hidden in a corner of the hangar, right next to where you need the cards, to quickly cool down or heat up the card.
      • While it may be an optional thing, collecting all the Dog Tags for a perfect game on the Gamecube version, much like the sequel, requires you to play through all five difficulties. If you miss one, play it again. Thankfully in this game they're only for bragging rights, as actual New Game Plus rewards are unlocked just by beating the game like in the PlayStation original.
    • Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker:
      • Hope you like or at least tolerate doing Vehicle battles, because in order to get everything in the game (such as design specs, your own vehicle units, and even emblems supplying you with bragging rights), you are definitely going to need to do this about fifty times, if not more. In fact, the only real challenge in regards to sneaking missions is the Hold Up and Perfect Stealth Extra Ops missions. And to get Mother Base and its sections to full capacity, you need to do some firing and recruiting either directly or via AP scanning, and the only chance you have at actually getting a random ranked soldier is to do AP scanning, and even then, only via the Recruit option, as most of the soldiers on the map have the exact same stats. You also need high stats just to get the Mother Base to full status.
      • Several weapons designs require an S-rank. Also, several of them also require specific jobs to even be developed. Several of the goodies (namely items such as uniforms and design specs) are randomized in the Outer Ops missions, meaning that you are most likely going to have to do several retries just to get them. Fortunately, if you reset the game when you get it, every time it still rewards you, which proves to be quite beneficial (although still annoying at times) if you want to reset because you lost some of your men.
      • Trying to actually develop new weapons proves to be quite a chore, since they usually take quite a while to develop, especially if the levels match exactly. It gets even more excruciating when trying to develop weapons and equipment that require a tech level/med level/soldier level/intel level/mess hall level of 99, in which the level of progress is between 1% and 2%, maybe 3% if you are really lucky, meaning you have to have at least 33 missions to accomplish, if not 50 or 100 missions. It can also prove to be longer if a member of a unit required for a weapon/equipment's development has to call in sick, and don't even think about firing them while it is still in development.
      • You also have to obtain several emblems for your player name. Most of them also require time in CO-OPs and Versus mode. The single player emblems also are not exempt from the difficulty. With items that indicate doing multiple things, you usually have to do them 50-250 times, maybe over 1000 to get an emblem for undetected stealth, Monster Hunting, and the like, of which you also have to get three emblems each with an increasing rank just to get them, and you have to master in all of the weapons of a category to get emblems relating to mastering a specific weapon, again some necessitating the use of CO-OPs to even level up easily, as otherwise they are difficult to level up (or in the case of the Human Slingshot Band, downright impossible in absolutely every sense of the word). Some of the emblems even require that you do several missions to get, and also these same emblems will also not count missions such as weapons training missions, perfect stealth (in the case of undetected stealth) and others. One emblem even requires you to undo all the hard work you did in building up Mother Base and the development of MSF by firing most of the males, putting the key male characters in storage, and then replacing them with an almost entirely female crew. Some emblems can only be unlocked by getting a certain amount of emblems or codenames. To get Mother Base Master, you need to not only build Mother Base's up completely, even have all of the teams at the 99th level, but you also need to procure or develop absolutely everything. The only good thing is that procuring Uniforms doesn't count under that requirement.
      • Codenames are also just as bad, and usually there is absolutely no way to even know about how to actually get these emblems as they are mostly random, and you can't really even tell how much of a specific type or range of weapon you've actually used under which category of disposing the enemy. You most likely also have to hunt for the same codenames again just to increase their rank.
      • Try getting all the parts for Metal Gear ZEKE, including the Custom's heads. The closest thing to a consistent definition is that you don't damage the parts beyond 90 percent, and even then, actually getting certain parts (most notably the armor, though the boosters, rail gun, radome, PW legs, and especially the AI heads would qualify as well) is completely random. You might never hit any of the parts and yet still not unlock it. The AI chips are also of no exception, as they are completely randomized, and you can't even hope to get them all under a one minute time limit, and a few times you might not even find any new chips in there.
      • In order to get the phone call, you need to accomplish every single mission in Extra Ops, Main Ops, and possibly Outer Ops. Yes, that means you also have to do the dates with Paz and Kazuhira missions, the latter of which is also quite a turn-off for several people due to the...implications in that mission.
      • This is all just stuff in the actual game as well. Don't even get started on DLC content, which not only is shown to have a hard time trying to get due to server problems in certain stores, but even when you do somehow unlock the DLC content, the soldiers that come with the items generally have horrible stats, and sometimes if you download the content from the internet, for some reason it just never downloads.
    • The mission objectives in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. The primary objectives for each main mission are always stated to you by both Miller and your iDroid, but the optional objectives (which are necessary for 100% Completion) are shaded out with "????" until you either complete them or finish the mission once, even in the recycled missions. If you want the coveted 100% Completion, you have to play the main missions multiple times, not because the optional objectives are necessarily difficult (some of them are quite easy, in fact) but because the game just didn't bother to explain them to you the first time around.
  • Do you like the Monster Hunter missions? Do you? Do you also like or at least tolerate Grinding? Well, you certainly won't if you are intending to get certain pieces of the monsters themselves to get the design specs for certain weapons, as they will at the very least be an annoying chore, and at worst will also be nightmarishly long and induce a huge amount of swears. Also, trying to get S-ranks in those missions to gain certain uniforms will also prove to be quite a chore, because not only do you need to tranquilize the main monsters in question, but you also have to do so under a certain time limit, and unlike the Vehicle commanders, there is absolutely no way to tell if the anesthetic rounds are having any effect on the monster or even how much stamina overall you actually took away.

    Survival Horror 
  • Alone in the Dark: The 2008 game will not let you proceed to new areas until you've destroyed a set number of evil trees that are spread out all over Central Park.
  • In the Japanese version of Clock Tower II: The Struggle Within, there's a special gag mode you can unlock called Buyo Buyo Mode, in which all the characters ceaselessly bounce up and down at all times. The requirement for this? Obtain every single ending in the game. This requires several playthroughs of a game that's already infamous for requiring you to do a bunch of random things just to prevent your character from dying at times.
  • Resident Evil: Revelations 2 is not a long game, but if you want to get all of the achievements, then you will have to finish the main campaign More Than Once. Vanilla mode, Countdown mode, "Invisible Enemy", different difficulties, weapon restrictions … the list goes on.
  • The first three entries in the Silent Hill series never take a very long time to replay; much time will be spent checking which doors are open, locked, or unable to be opened period, checking the map, and figuring out Guide Dang It! puzzles. The bonus features are usually somewhat reasonable, except in Silent Hill 3; if you want to try the hardest difficulty "Extreme X", you'll have to first beat the game on Hard, then beat it nine more times on Extreme difficulties 1 through 9. Beating Extreme X also unlocks a costume, but this can be skipped by looking up the code, unlike unlocking the difficulty itself. Additionally, the games give you a ranking out of 10 at the end of your playthrough, but the first three don't even let you attempt getting the full 10 stars until you've cleared the game between 5-7 times, as game clears are a part of the points required for it.

    Third Person Shooter 
  • The Gears of War games are absolutely insane about this. To get 100% Completion for the achievements requires: hosting (not just playing) one hundred matches, getting one hundred kills with each weapon, and getting a total online body count of ten thousand (Gears 1); racking up one hundred thousand kills across all modes and reaching level 100 (Gears 2); and earning every onyx medal, which requires (among others) six thousand kills with various weapons in versus modes and six thousand matches in each versus game type (Gears 3).
  • Jet Force Gemini forces you, right before the final level, to rescue every Tribal on the game. You must rescue them all in one go for each level you attempt; if you miss or let die at least one of them, you must restart that level. They have an annoying habit of running around in the middle of crossfire and some Drone soldiers are specifically programmed to held them hostage and kill them the moment they spot you. You must also rescue those on out-of-the-way hidden worlds.

    Visual Novels 
  • In Katawa Shoujo, what makes each girl's storyline so long is that within each track to a certain ending, there are optional snippets of dialogue and pictures that can only be accessed by making the proper choices at each juncture. This results in players having to repeat overly long and repetitive scenes, though thankfully there is an option to fast-forward through the dialogue.
  • The original version of Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors on the DS requires you to play through the whole game at LEAST twice, based on a choice you made at the beginning of the game. And, if you're a completionist, playing through the WHOLE game with all puzzles and story beats a whopping six times to see everything. Certain puzzles you'll have down by playthrough two or three. The Updated Re-release shortens this by giving you a story map where you only have to backtrack to the room that gives you the story choice instead of restarting the whole game.
  • The 25th Ward has multiple instances of this, fitting Suda51's love of screwing with the player. It ultimately comes to a head in "#07: black out", the game's final chapter. It has a Last-Second Ending Choice between 100 different endings, with the final, true ending locked behind viewing every single one. Since saving and loading is disabled in this chapter, you need to go through "#07: black out" in its entirety at least a hundred times for that last ending, which will take at least twelve hours to go through.

    Wide Open Sandbox 
  • Crackdown also fits into this with 800 orbs and mini challenges like races to tour the 3 districts.
  • Both Endless Ocean games are big offenders. The first asks that you find each animal on three separate dives to complete the encyclopedia, and the second requires you to save a million of the ingame currency to re-open the last area.
  • Just Cause and its sequel are major offenders. The first game had over 40 sectors, each with about 7 bases on average that Rico had to conquer to claim the sector for the resistance and allied gang. THEN there were the loyalty missions and collection sidequests which were essential in ranking up two different faction alliances that gave you better request drops. Each faction mission gave 30 faction points, and the maximum rank required at least 7000. The game itself had less than 30 main missions. The sequel is even worse. Over 300 Bases, hundreds of upgrade collectibles, 300 collectible tokens (underwater supplies, tribal skulls, and drug cases), and at least 50 faction missions and 50 racing challenges. The number of main missions in Just Cause 2? SEVEN.
  • Mafia: The City of Lost Heaven has very few actual driving missions, but before almost every mission you have to drive from your don's bar to the target, in a city with very few points of interest, in a slow vehicle that has a hard time turning, and with a speed limit that forces you to drive even slower (40 mph for the first half of the game, 60mph in the second) if you don't want the police on your tail. Because your vehicle is not really made for outrunning police cars and losing the police is almost impossible, most times it's just better to restart the mission if you get the police's attention.
  • Red Dead Redemption has a habit of quests requiring you (for various reasons) to finish quests on the opposite side of the map from where you started them. This usually results in double Fake Longevity as you are forced to follow an NPC from the starting point, across the map to where the mission takes place, and then, once the mission is complete, to run all the way back to the original starting point in order to start the next mission.
  • Saints Row:
    • The first two games are big offenders. While they are Wide-Open Sandbox games, they also require you to do side-missions or other activities to earn "Respect", which is spent in order to play the main story missions, essentially making the game seem longer than it really is. This was done away with in Saints Row: The Third, as respect is used instead to unlock upgrades for your character and you can do story missions any time you want.
    • Many missions in the first two games require you to go to a specific location to start the mission, only to have the action take place across town. Failing the mission early enough meant you got to repeat the (often completely unremarkable) drive between the arbitrary mission start and the actual action. The third game does away with this by having the NPC giving the quest call you instead of demanding to meet in person.

  • 50K Racewalker: Due to the slow pace of the player character, it can take at least twenty hours to finish one game.
  • Evil Defenders is a Tower Defense game with 15 maps. To add on play time, each of the maps has 6 difficulty levels. And then the achievements call for grinding four times as many kills as all 15*6 of those levels.
  • To unlock anything worthwhile beyond a couple of videos and a credits sequence in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2, you need to complete every goal and get every cash icon on every level. To finally unlock everything, including two secret levels, you need to do that with every single character (and there are 16 of them), each time starting from the scratch.
  • Mario Golf:
    • Toadstool Tour has one of the most insane examples of this in all gaming when it comes to unlocking the MAX difficulty in the American version. To unlock it, you have to beat every Star Tournament with every character. This makes for a grand total of a whopping 102 Star Tournaments to be won. Understandably this was completely toned down in the Japanese and European versions (that came out afterwards), where to unlock the MAX difficulty you just have to beat Bowser in his Character Match. Similarly, this requirement was understandably completely axed for future games.
    • Linking Toadstool Tour and Advance Tour has this when it comes to unlocking the Star Courses, you have to play all Character Match, Ring Shot, Shot Practice, Approach Practice, and Putt Practice modes with your transferred character to unlock them, even if you had already done so beforehand with any other character.
    • Super Rush has an example of this in unlocking the Super Star versions of the characters, to do so, you have to get 3000 character points. You get 10 points per hole played, so you need to play 300 holes with every character to unlock their Super Star version.
    • In Super Rush, to unlock new Characters and Special Costumes each month you have to play Online matches and reach A-/135 match points monthly. You get around 10 points per match played so it takes a while.
  • Mario Tennis:
    • In all games besides Ultra Smash and Aces to fill all of the Exhibition match records, you have to play a match with every character against every character.
    • To unlock the Super Star versions of characters you have to beat all normal tournaments with all characters. This is somewhat alleviated in Open, where you just have to beat the Final Cup to unlock them and in Ultra Smash, where you can unlock them via Knockout Challenge (the game's equivalent to Tournaments) or just using coins instead. Aces ditches Super Star characters altogether.
    • In Aces, to unlock new Special Costumes for characters you have to play Online tournaments and obtain 1000 participation points.


    Rhythm Game 

    Role Playing Game 
  • Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter, while having a rather egregious example of Fake Longevity (see above), also allows you to skillfully avoid encounters, and getting the drop on enemies significantly weaker than you instantly awards XP without a battle.
  • Mana Khemia: Alchemists of Al-Revis and its sequel allow you to defeat weak enemies instantly by slashing at them with your sword. You don't get EXP but you do get items so it's worth it.
  • The Mother series
    • In EarthBound (1994), your party will automatically win and gain EXP and money from enemies that they can realistically defeat just by breathing on them. Such monsters will also run away from the party, and sneaking up on them from behind when they do this makes it even easier to get an auto-win. However, by exploiting this fact and grinding in areas where the enemies run from you, it breaks the game wide open. That's why...
    • In Mother 3, monsters you can easily kill will also run away from you, and if you dash into them you'll knock them aside instead of triggering a battle screen. However, you don't get any EXP or money from them.
    • EarthBound Beginnings, on the other hand, has Fake Longevity in spades. The rate of the random encounters is so high you can usually expect to run into one two steps from the previous fight. Worse yet is that you'll need all that XP and much more to beat the game.
  • The first 2 Paper Mario games have badges that let you defeat enemies who would give you one or zero Star Points (First Attack lets you defeat them with a first strike, while Bump Attack lets you walk into them to defeat them). Of course, they still require Badge Points to wear them (First Attack takes 1, Bump Attack takes 5). You can also just avoid battles, since they're all Pre Existing Encounters.
  • Shadow Hearts: Covenant has a near subversion, one of the side quests is the Man Festival in what appears to be a 100 level dungeon of nothing but fights. After the 26th battle you skip to the 89th. A title card explains how the party fought through the previous 63 levels.
  • Some Suikoden games also feature the auto-win mechanism similar with what's described above. The party can obtain the ability to slaughter cheap mooks quickly, keeping all the (negligible) EXP and items while not wasting time.
  • Similar to the above example, Super Paper Mario also subverts this with an area where it appears you will have to fight 100 Sammer Guys in a row to get the Pure Heart. Then Count Bleck interrupts after the 20th Sammer Guy to declare the world's end, and then Mimi shows up around the 25th to stall you with a boss fight. After Count Bleck appears, the remaining Sammer Guys will immediately surrender so you can get to the Pure Heart (with explanations ranging from, "While I maintain that we should fight to preserve our honor, I will respectfully back down and allow you to obtain the Pure Heart." at the beginning to "Just go!!" at the end) and then THE ENTIRE WORLD IS DESTROYED. You still survive though (somehow).
  • The Super Robot Wars series often uses overly long attack animations that after a while can add a sense of fake longevity. Though the newer games have attack animations so awesome to watch and visually appealing that you no longer mind sitting through them over and over (these can be turned off, skipped mid-attack and fast-forwarded).
  • In Tales of the Abyss, there are a few seciton(s) where you have to basically go across the world. However, this couples with Anti-Frustration Features - as the game asks "Would you like to immediately travel to ____?"
  • The World Ends with You utilizes Pre-existing Encounters that you activate by using the scan feature and touching Noise symbols to begin battle. As a result, the only battles you need to fight are plotline battles (e.g. making the Gatito brand the #1 brand, which you make so by fighting enemies with the Red Skull Pin equipped). You can also escape battles without fail if they are not plot-critical, albeit at the cost of some Sync rating. However, if you decide to avoid battles, prepare to be bit in the ass when you face later bosses. During the third week, you can't escape Taboo Noise battles, and the game employs occasional Random Encounters when you try to move from one area to another.

  • Crimzon Clover has a cutscene of the player ship taking off in Stage 1 that is at first unskippable, but a very cheap purchase in the shop (as in, playing the first stage all the way will generate enough credits) allows you to skip it with a button press.

    Third-Person Shooter 
  • Starlink: Battle for Atlas has you using hyperdrive to travel from one planet to another...or, once you've visited a planet, you can revisit it again by pointing your ship at it when you're in space and pressing the button to fast-travel to it, bypassing the hyperdrive and all the hazards that come with it (such as asteroids and Outlaws). Better yet, an upgrade to the Equinox will let you fast- travel to any previously-solved Warden Spire, even ones on a planet you're not currently on, simply by going to the planet on the map and clicking on the Spire you want to jump to.

    Non-Video Game Examples 
  • Gronkh often lampshades this, jokingly stating that something he does would just happen to stretch the Let's Play. Discussed and criticised numerous times during his Dragon Age II LP.


Video Example(s):


The Destination Wheel

Scott criticises the Destination Wheel in Chibi-Robo Ziplash for serving no purpose other than being a frustrating waste of time for the player.

How well does it match the trope?

4.88 (8 votes)

Example of:

Main / FakeLongevity

Media sources: