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I faced an unwinnable by mistake (I hope) error in Loom. I don't know about the version with the VO, though, I mean the ancient DOS game.
In the glass makers town, when you walk past the huge skythe, you can click it and you get the four notes for sharpening things. If you don't look at it, you can walk past just fine, whereas normally you cannot proceed to a point of no return unless you have all your spells.
When you stand in the smithy, later in the game, watching the smith finishing the last sword for the clerics, you have to unsharpen it. If you forgot to get the spell from the scythe you can stand there and wait for all eternity, the cleric and the smith will keep chatting, but you won't get caught and cannot win the game.
No mention of the first battle against Ramsus in Xenogears? The game gives you NO warning that you're about to fight a very hard boss, and puts a save point after the Point of No Return (I would have tried leveling up, but I couldn't do that since my access to enemies was cut off). And it stacks many factors against you - one of the weakest characters in the game, Bart, is paired up with a healer who has very weak spells and misses half the time (thanks for nothing, Margie!), while Ramsus is paired with Miang, who CANNOT be killed (neither can Margie, but she sucks and isn't much help in this fight), and heals Ramsus fully each turn, which means that you have to defeat him in one blow. It's an almost impossible battle if Bart is underleveled or poorly equipped. It wasn't quite "unwinnable" since I managed to beat him, but I lost count of many times I lost the battle.
If you can still win legitimately, it's not Unwinnable.
"At one point in Area 6, you can shoot up through a ceiling and enter a door, but can't go back because you can't shoot down. The only way out is suicide, if that is possible."
OBJECTION! That is a one-way door to before, there so you don't have to trek through same-old same-old on your way to the next level. Most were designed to be passable once that level's powerup has been aquired. In this case one can climb the wall, turn around and shoot down.
What game was this referring to?
Probably Blaster Master or similar.
Removed the following examples
It is impossible for the Water Temple to become unwinnable. I don't know where this idea comes from, but there are always enough keys. This is without including sequence breaks, of course. The second example is rather odd, as there are no places to use the Megaton Hammer in the Water Temple.
Come to think of it, I should probably cut the Gerudo Training Ground example, too. The entry itself admits that it can't become unwinnable.
How about we relist the Water Temple and just make it clear that we do mean the sequence breaks? If finding your way around is trial & error, then you can break the sequence by accident!
You misunderstand my reasoning for including the phrase "without including sequence breaks". If you include them, you can actually skip several keys entirely, get a few keys early, or just hover up and jumpslash through the boss door to skip the temple entirely. In any event, it is *completely* impossible to get stuck in the Water Temple, sequence breaks or no.
An example was added recently for Diablo II, stating that restarting too many times results in "bad dead bodies", which I was unfamiliar with. I tried looking for information on it and as far as I can gather this only comes up with hacked items and edited saves. Can you get this error when you're not hacking?
Cause if it only comes up with hacking, then it's not an example.
The listing implies it is caused by too many Rage Quits in a row. Diablo II seems to be trying to fight what would otherwise be a Good Bad Bug.
The Metroid Prime "Artifact of Warrior" example may be By Design. Otherwise, why would the port keep it?
Cut the Broken Sword 2 example after some thought. This isn't a conventional sequential Lost Forever: One should have to go to some trouble to turn an critical item that can be picked up into an item that can't be picked up. Since it always happens at the same time, and since the refusal is so blunt — "your character sees no need to carry that"? — it seems comparable to the classic By Design example of the door that turns into graffiti after you cross its threshold.
It seems the Sega Genesis version of Bubble and Squeak is Unwinnable by Mistake due to the springs being less "springy" than their Amiga counterparts. One of the early desert levels is thus impossible to complete as a result, rendering it impossible to finish the game.
Please correct me if I’m mistaken.
Just removed this (again):
According to the archived discussion, this is actually By Design.
Just removed a similar example yet again. Honestly, do some editors never check the discussion?
100% Completion and Unwinnable are different things entirely. I left the examples where 100% Completion altered something (giving a different ending or a bonus level) as these are closer to the true spirit of the trope.
Are we sure the Metal Gear example isn't by Design? It's a Stealth Game, so shooting anyone is dubious. Shooting hostages (who are presumably innocent or on your side) would be a double fault. So it is entirely possible that the game blocking the win for people who shoot too many hostages is on purpose. It's a Videogame Cruelty Punishment with a severe unintended consequence.
Cut this and put it here for now. This game is from the NES era (even if the Nintendo port isn't good). This could be on purpose.
Cut this and put it here for now. Not sure that this is a genuine example.
Why does the Serria folder keep being changed?
There is one person/set of people who like the classic "Sierra Sierra Sierra Sierra Arrgh!!!!!" joke. There is another set that thinks this joke is unfunny and, for reasons uncertain, want to expunge it.
I'm with the first group, personally, as long as no one breaks the folder mark-up trying it, but I can have it either way.
I'm with the second group. I like jokes, when they are funny, this one is only funny to a few people who know the joke, to everyone else, it just looks like the page was written by a some bile-filled idiot who can barely write properly * I don't mean that anyone in particular IS such a person. Just talking appearances here.
Also, it makes the folder button disproportionately huge compared to the others. Also, It makes the listed examples look far less serious when the whole section is named like if someone is foaming at the mouth when writing them. If people are dead set on referring to the joke, give it it's own bullet IN the folder - which is a perfectly valid thing to do, just don't name it after it.
Okay. a new Bioshock 2 example was added. I suspect it's really by Design, since it seems to be cleaning the gene pool (so to speak — it takes stupid behavior to trigger it) and since it seems to include programming that isn't normal.
Anyone else have an opinion?
How about IRL examples?
I'm asking 'cause I was in a situation that could fall under this trope: I went through a not-so-standard (composite) bureaucratic procedure, that, when "finished", due to the flawed process of the procedure, in addition to not making me achieve the goal which this procedure is meant for, it rendered the goal impossible to achieve.
So, would this qualify for this trope? personally, I think it really does fit the concept of the trope, but your mileage may vary and I am asking to tell how much and to which end it varies, so i would be able to decide if I should put it in the example list, or not. (TL;DR - ...fit for the trope, or not?). Could provide the exact details, if needed.
About Sonic 3 and the quarter-pipe:
It's Unwinnable in a minor sense when it happens because, if you get stuck in there and can't get out, then you can't finish the level and are definitely going to lose a life when the timer runs out.
It becomes truly unwinnable if you take the instructions in the game's manual at face value. The manual tells you to reset the game if you get in that situation — and if you reset, then you automatically lose the game you were playing before you reset. (Bonus points in that the zone where this glitch happens is some distance from the start of the game.)
So, this example is kind of meta.
About the Link to the Past example that got cut: even if you can always get back to the Dark World via the Hyrule Temple, the cut example appears to involve a place in the Light World that requires a certain flute to go anywhere from there. If you get there by Sequence Breaking with the mirror and some displaced Dark scenery before you get that flute, you can't even get to the Temple, or anywhere else, if I understood correctly — in which case it really is Unwinnable.
This is why ending entries with So Yeah is discouraged.
Okay, so...why don't any of the folders work? It's been bugging me for a while.
it seems to be a "too big" thing; deleting a handful of examples (ANY handful of examples) from the "Other Video Games" section fixes it
Removed Rune Factory example:
because that's not Unwinnable, that's just a bug. Had it worked as intended, there would always be a way out— at worst, you could camp on the island until next winter.
IIRC, Unwinnable by Mistake does include unwinnable because of bugs. This was a severe programming mistake. If the designers had intended to crash the game, then it would've been Unwinnable by Design; but since designers never intend to crash the game, we know it's a mistake.
I would that that a game with a vicious crash bug would full under "Game Breaking Bug." Unwinnable By Mistake seems to be for design oversights, rather than outright glitches.
Let me rephrase that.
"If you do X, the game crashes" is not Unwinnable. It's just a Game-Breaking Bug.
According to the intro to Unwinnable by Design, Unwinnable by Mistake is when "either a bug or an oversight has rendered the game broken" (emphasis mine), and I agree. This category may overlap with Game-Breaking Bug (as it arguably does with Jet Set Willy's Attic Bug, although that example is of an error in the sprite table, hence could be argued to be an error in data rather than code), but they're not necessarily mutually exclusive.
Unwinnable, though, means the game is still playable, you just can't complete it because the plot progression is broken, an enemy is unkillable for some reason, a key item becomes inaccessible, or what have you. If he game outright crashes.. well you can't win it, sure, but you can't play it either. If there's no distinction, then we would have to start lsting every crash bug in any game on here as "unwinnable", and that just isn't viable.
...I think we need a canonical distinction between Unwinnable by Mistake and Game-Breaking Bug, because I'm having trouble thinking of examples that clearly go in one but not the other.
Game-Breaking Bug vs. Unwinnable by Mistake:
The mistake in Unwinnable by Mistake simply makes it impossible to finish the game. Game-Breaking Bug makes it impossible to play the game.
Or to put it another way:
Let's use the Zarf's Interactive Scale (extended edition) from Unwinnable by Design. If the programming error leads to a "polite" situation (that is, it crashes the game immediately) or a "tough" situation (that is, you can tell immediately that you have triggered a bug that will hinder your ability to win), then it's a Game-Breaking Bug. If it creates a situation that is "cruel" or worse (that is, the bug triggers and will keep you from winning, but it neither stops you from playing nor immediately announces itself), then it is Unwinnable by Mistake.
One other note:
If you can't tell immediately whether a game is Unwinnable by Mistake or Unwinnable by Design, then it cannot be a Game-Breaking Bug.
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