Returning to your childhood favourites (and being disappointed)

We all have games from our childhood that we remember fondly. I just wanted to share my experience of returning to one of my favourite games as a kid and getting burnt.

I can remember pouring hours and hours into Perfect Dark on my N64. I replayed missions endlessly, whether stealthily or on a murder-spree. I'd spend hours doing silly things that I wouldn't waste my time on as an adult - I'd re-do the training over and over and I may or may not have blocked the door open to the shooting range to fire unlimited arrows into the face of the guy standing outside on more than one occasion (don't judge).

It was just a fun game - better than Goldeneye in every single way in my opinion as a stupid kid.

I recently rebought Perfect Dark to return to my childhood playground and...wow, was it bad.

The gameplay doesn't hold up, the story was lame (especially from the moment Elvis appears) and I just didn't enjoy playing it. It completely tarnished my memories of playing it in my youth and I honestly wish I'd never returned for that hit of nostalgia.

Have you ever returned to one of your childhood favourites just to be let down?

I had a similar experience with Perfect Dark when it was re-released for Xbox Live. I was excited to play it, but the game mechanics have not aged well. Plenty of shooters have surpassed it, and it just feels clunky to control.

I never played it.. THEN, but I guess that is part of the problem that is happening when I try to play now Ocarina of time... the game feels odd and the controllers are weird.

I will soon TRY to play Xenosaga on the PS2 (this is a little project of mine) and see how well that game has aged.

Any comments on that?

Guess I should avoid going back to Perfect Dark. Agree that it was better than GoldenEye but I couldn't convince my friends at the time.

Went back to GoldenEye with the guys a few years ago and it was bad. The controls are just not good and how did we ever play so much of that?

I'm glad a few of you share the same thoughts as me (thought there was something wrong me...which is still up for debate, but..).

Clusks, I think it was the Xbox Live re-release now that you mention it. What a bad decision.

Stele, I'd recommend not returning to it honestly. Cherish the memories!

Funny you mention this - just last weekend I pulled out my old N64 and fired up both Goldeneye and Perfect Dark. They certainly aren't anywhere near as good as I remember them being. Having said that, I still enjoyed playing them - I like the fast paced, objective based levels and the stealth-action feel. I don't know if there's too many games since that have nailed it in quite the same way. But yes, the controls are terribly clunky. I was surprised at just how generous the auto-aim was, but turning it off made things near impossible.

I don't have many N64 games left after selling most of them, but the next one on my list to try again is Jet Force Gemini.

Also, the vast majority of NES games are nowhere near as good as I remember them being - super clunky controls and way more frustrating than fun. Although SMB 3 is the main exception that comes to mind.

I tried to go back to playing with a milk bottle by balancing it on my limbs. Even accounting for my current size and normal milk bottle size, it was nowhere near as mesmerizing as I remember it to be.

My answer, I think, lies with the PS1 Final Fantasy games. 7 and 9 specifically.

And it's not that I'm disappointed in the games themselves. They're exactly as I remember them. My disappointment lies instead with myself, or my circumstances. I am just incapable of making the effort and time to see these things through, post 30.

Nostalgia is a hell of a drug.

I played Perfect Dark on an N64 a few months back, jesus that game is uncontrolable with the N64 control pad. Will always love the game for the good times but the world has moved on.

I wonder how the remake of Golden Eye (360) holds up, is it better with current creature comforts and iterations these days?

My mind immediately went to (1983?) “Transformers: the movie” - I watched it a few years ago, with my (at the time) 11(?) year old son... ooof, it was awful. I figure I’d have a similar reaction to the G.I. Joe movie.

Where I have no problem watching the old Robotech anime, with him.

What? I remember rewatching transformers the movie after the Michael Bay abominations and still enjoying it in my mid 20s. Much better than Bay-splosions trash.