They're especially awful in horror games. In F.E.A.R. 2, instead of being helpless against ghosts, its a quicktime event to kill them. And Dead Space 2 seems to be going the QTE route.
Listen up designers, I AM NOT SCARED IF I HAVE COMPLETE CONTROL OVER EVERYTHING!
That's known as 'paradox of control' and is one of the first fucking things they teach you as a game designer, at least in the course I'm doing. In order for the player to get immersed in the game and feel in control, some control actually needs to be taken away (there's the 'paradox' bit). As you mentioned, needing to do something other than a damn QTE would be far more effective; it would give things a greater sense of threat and would heighten the tension the player feels. As it stands it's just "Oh, I press this button and everything's fine again".
It should be something more like: "FUUUUUUUUUUUUUU- DON'T LET IT GET CLOSE."
I have to wonder how many QTE's are thrown in because of time crunches in developing?
"We got two weeks left to release, but we have four sequences yet to program, what do we do?
Screw it, just make em quicktime events."
It's another thing I think Shenmue got right - Command QTEs.
At certain points in Shenmue II - often during fights - the screen would freeze, a very distinctive tone would play, then it'd flash a sequence of buttons.
You hit them (or not!), things resume and you perform the relevant action.
Recently played resident evil 5 again and got annoyed by the damn QTE's, especially the "mash the button faster than is humanly possible, to not die" ones. (Thankfully there are only a couple of those.)
Not as bad as 4's though, they were a special kind of taking the piss.
Although it did occasionally do the opposite to the comic and actually make you pay more attention to the cutscene.
A thousand times YES. This is why QTE sucks so hard.
I LOVE quick-time events. If I'm not suddenly forced to push random buttons, how else will I remember that I'm playing a game? That's why I created a song for my iPod that consists of silence punctuated by a scream to "EAT POPCORN NOW." I made it for when I go to the movies so that I'll remember where I am. If I don't eat it fast enough, I make myself leave the theater. I also made one for a phone system, where the people on hold will be periodically instructed to press a random button or else the system will hang up on them. I haven't had any takers for that one yet, though.
Hey! how many zombies have gone while we wait for episode 3 now? Huh!?
The Mass Effects were the only games where I actually approved of the QTEs
or was it just II
I thought Mass Effect 2 did them pretty well, with lots of "Press X to be Badass"
The only QTE I really liked.
Click Left Button to warmly clasp the Krogan's hand in gratitude.
Click Right Button to HEADBUTT HIM TO THE GROUND YOU PANSY!!!
Also, my first contact with QTEs was in Tomb Raider, the first game after Angel of Darkness piece of crap. It was a "escape + sideway camera" scene. I watched as Lara ran towards an obstacle (a rock or something like that) and suddenly, a gray image appears. I have no idea what's going on, and suddenly she dies and it's Game Over. Restart from the beginning of the QTE scene, I figure I have to do something... but I had no bloody idea what. After 6 or 7 times I finally guessed which button to press (PC version).
Never finished the game because of them. Also, the Prince of Persia game. No, not the first good 3D one. The one with the claw-equipped prince and evil god. ONE GIANT QTE. Everything from battles to exploration to boss fights is in quick times... Looks nice, but is pathetically easy.
One day a game will come along that actually makes QTE look good. Indigo Prophecy came close, but then it had that section where a character was talking, and you have to do some QTE to represent the another character focusing on what he's saying... you know, that thing that I'd like to be doing? Consequently, I have no idea what was said during that entire scene, but I guess at least my character knows what's going on.
I'd say Prince of Persia accomplished this. Consider: The entire game is a series of extended quick time events, but instead of flashing the b button when they want you to grab something, the prince merely approaches a ring in the wall that he needs to swing on.
Edit: I now realize that this exact post has been made one above mine. I am deeply ashamed.
Stolen Pixels #214: X, A, B, Win!
They never teach you how to do quick-time events in the Dark Jedi Academy.
Read Full Article
Actually, there is one game that did its QTE's relatively well.
God of War 3 had all the buttons placed at their respective screen edges/corners, so you were reacting to the location rather than having to specifically look at the symbol and identify it before pressing the corresponding button, which not only heightened your reaction speed but let you look at the action too.