How you really feel about videogames, as informed by Google Autocomplete | PCGamesN

How you really feel about videogames, as informed by Google Autocomplete

Google Autocomplete games

Google Autocomplete is a handy little thing that will show you the most popular terms relating to the phrase you’re currently typing into the search bar. But not only does it save you a few seconds and quickly direct you to a relevant set of results, it also offers quite the insight into what everyone’s thinking about things. So we decided to see what the internet is thinking when it comes to PC games.

Need a great new game? Don't rely on Google, just check out PCGamesN's best games of 2016.


Google Autocomplete Battlefield

The most commonly asked question on Google in regards to EA’s combined-arms online shooter is “Why is Battlefield 4 so cheap”. Now, BF4 has been out for a few years now, and currently retails at £14.99 on Origin, but that isn’t that cheap. So we can only come to the conclusion that “cheap” refers to the cool youth slang use of the word, which Urban Dictionary reliably informs me means “An individual who uses the same tactic/tactics to win”. 

Now it makes sense, because yes: Battlefield 4 is totally cheap. People constantly spam areas with guided missiles and grenades for easy kills.

But wait, what if searchers are actually talking about BF4 itself? Because Battlefield is cheap; it uses the same money-making tactics - map packs, battlepacks, and Premium scheme - as EA have used the past few years. Yup, that’ll be it. 

Call of Duty

Google Autocomplete Call of Duty

Despite the astonishing number of copies Call of Duty manages to sell each year, the internet is still convinced and adamant that the FPS series is garbage. Google Autocomplete confirms this feeling twice, picking on the franchise as a whole and singling out Ghosts as the baddest of the bad. Turns out not even a dog can save you from internet scorn.  

Of course, these two facts have you all confused, so no wonder you’re asking Google why Call of Duty is so popular. I mean, why would countless millions of people play a bad shooter year-in-year-out? I mean, you couldn’t be wrong about it, surely?

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Google Autocomplete Counter-Strike

Topping the search queries for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is the deep question of why the game’s so damn hard. It’s a question that can be quite easily answered by simply playing the game, but why do that when you can trawl through forums of people calling each other n00bs and insisting CS is easy? 

Further down the list there’s the inevitable search for a CSGO betting website, or more specifically the question as to why nefarious CSGOShuffle has been blocked in the UK. The answer is because Shuffle is scared it’ll be prosecuted by UK law due to its strong stance on gambling. Not that the block will deter you from doing it someplace else, right? 


Google Autocomplete DayZ

Another double query on why a game is bad, this time for bug-a-thon DayZ. Other questions involve wondering why the game suffers so much from lag, and why everything’s a bit blurry. 

So far, so DayZ, but it does show there’s a distinct pattern in search: people want to know why everything’s bad. All four games on this list so far have the same question: “why is x bad?”. The question can of course come from two places: either wanting to know just how this hot garbage happened, or being perplexed that everyone seems to hate a game you’ve decided is quite good. Not that the latter applies in this example; everyone knows DayZ is awful, of course. 

Diablo 3

Google Autocomplete Diablo 3

Breaking the prior established pattern of “why is x so bad?” is Diablo 3, which has people scratching their heads over why it is so fun and addictive. Perhaps it’s because, as query one points out, Diablo 3 is easy, and therefore simple enough to keep playing. It’s certainly something I’ve thought, just moments after screaming violently into the abyss due to my character perma-dying on the third boss fight. Goddamn you Diablo, why were you so easy?


Google Autocomplete Doom

Among the usual confusion over popularity and performance issues, Doom’s autocomplete returns an unusually specific question: “Why is Doom guy in a tomb?”. To which I’d say: look, no one cares a jot about Doom’s lore and narrative. That’s why it barely exists. You’d find more worthwhile answers in questions like “How heavy is the COD man’s ammo bag?” and “Why is Gordon Freeman’s suit orange?” Just get on with the shooting and jaw-snapping and leave the hard questions for the abyss, okay?

Grand Theft Auto

Google Autocomplete GTA

We’re back on track with Grand Theft Auto, with millions of searches ensuring the ever-enduring question of “Why is GTA Online so bad?” tops the suggestions. But it’s the bottom two that are so incredibly baffling. Has humanity sunk to such a state of idiocy that it has to ask google why Grand Theft Auto - a game that is literally named after a crime - is rated 18? Perhaps it needs rebranding as Drugs, Torture, and Organized Mass Murder: The Videogame.


Google Autocomplete Half-Life

Somewhat unsurprisingly, of our ten autocomplete samples Half-Life is the only one to return four completely positive-slanted results. People really want to know why Valve’s seminal shooter series is great, going as far as to enquire what makes it important in the gaming sphere. Important, like the Queen, the Human Rights act, and the first coffee of the morning. 

Actually you’d best stop searching for that one, lest such importance go to Half-Life’s head and it decides it's above being seen in public again. 



Google Autocomplete Overwatch

Ah, entitlement. “Waaah! Why is Overwatch not free? Waaah! Why does it cost so much? Waaah!”. Despite Overwatch being one of the best games of the year, it seems some people just don’t want to pay for it. 

This opinion almost certainly comes from the fact that Overwatch is multiplayer only, and in a world where so many competitive FPS games are free-to-play its pricing is an oddity. And even if Blizzard insists on charging for the game, many see the lack of a single-player campaign reason enough that it should retail at a lower cost, similar CS:GO’s slender $15 launch price. Both solid points, but unfortunately the only real answer to these queries is: because Blizzard can and will charge money. 


Google Autocomplete Quake

Despite being an incredibly popular 90s FPS with enduring qualities, Quake is not popular with searchers. Just one of the four autocomplete suggestions relates to Quake the game, with two focussing on the hearty (but apparently law-breaking) breakfast cereal, and the fourth demanding to know why comedian Earthquake is no longer DJing on radio station WBLS (if you’re one of those people don’t worry: he’s back 3-7pm every weekday). 

The first and only relevant question is a good one though: Quake Live was launched as a free-to-play game, but was changed four years later into a premium paid-for Steam title. That’s quite the kick in the teeth, so no wonder it led to millions of searches. What gives, Bethesda? 

Overall, Google Autocomplete paints the picture that everyone’s very grumpy about games, either because they’re bad, too easy, or cost too much. But perhaps that’s just the vocal minority, as those who actually like games are probably too busy playing them to use Google. 

Have you asked these questions on Google yourself? Or perhaps you’ve come across a weird gaming autocomplete in your searching adventures? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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yourenotU avatarAnAuldWolf avatarVeganGaro avatar
yourenotU Avatar
1 Year ago

I understand that video games are as popular as they have ever been but I think we are in a bubble, a period in history where video games in general are less fulfilling to human beings. The civilized world is becoming more aware of how the world operates. The recent research in cognitive psychology and neuroscience is illuminating this phenomenon. I believe most people don't realize this. They just feel the frustration. Video games are an interesting medium to correlate and study this hypothesis. I feel people in general are disenchanted with video games. It may be confirmation bias but it seems like the majority of gaming websites and reviewers progressively dislike video games. Maybe VR over the next 10 years will reinvigorate the pleasure of gaming.


AnAuldWolf Avatar
1 Year ago

For me it's the concentration on realism and violence. You don't really have many pointy clicks or games like Uru: Ages Beyond Myst any more. And right up until the '06 Shitfall you'd easily find lots of games with wacky settings that opted for ridiculous cartoon violence rather than the glorification of 'real' things.

I blame the shift from introversion to extraversion in gaming. By which I mean which audiences they're appealing to. In the '80s, '90s, and even the early '00s video games were for introverted nerds who enjoyed the sort of creativity on offer. There wasn't that self-obsessed fetishism going on that lead to realism and the glorification of real world violence. And when it DID happen, it was an anomaly rather than the status quo.

Sometime around '06 though gaming started appealing to the extraverted mainstream. So Jak & Daxter was replaced by Call of Duty, Sly Cooper was replaced by Battlefield, and anything cerebral and not at all violent was largely faded out. Today, the lack of cerebral gaming often has people fall like wild, starved predatory creatures upon anything that fits their appetite. See: Portal 2.

Too many games, for me, these days are human narcissism. It's all... Look at us humans! We're so fucking great! Let's all be giant narcissists and obsess over how fantastic we are while we kill shit. And earth is such a great place to kill shit on, because it's comfortable and familiar, so let's set everything there!

And it's dull. Dull, dull, dull. It's just a cancerous brain rot.

Video games were more interesting when they weren't so obsessed with mundanity, normality, and the real world. Being normal is the most boring thing anyone could be. I mean, look at Ted Bunday, a man so normal he became a serial killer. I tend to rejoice at my abnormality because it generally makes me more interesting and a less rabidly violence obsessed person.

That's gaming today. Very normal. Very normal in how violent it is. Very normal in how self-obsessed it is. Very normal in how profoundly narcissistic and self-congratulatory it is.

And that's why people are losing interest. It's not fantastic any more. It's this unimaginative quagmire where creativity goes to die.

AnAuldWolf Avatar
1 Year ago

That view is actually commonplace amongst PvP gamers. Not wanting to pay for Overwatch, I mean. It's why Gearbox should never have bothered with PvP in the first place and just gone with a PvE hero-based campaign. Most of what's hurting Battleborn right now is that they're focusing so much on PvP but they're having so much trouble making money from the PvP audience.

I've actually warned many developers about this. PvE gamers are used to paying full price for a campaign, that's not unfamiliar to us. But then you have PvP fans who're used to getting things free, or younger players who've only ever seen things being free and can't really remember a time when you paid for a PvP experience (Quake III Arena et al).

It's why PvP games are falling over themselves trying to figure out what they are, whom they should appeal to, and how they can make money. It's one of the reasons I never bothered with Overwatch. PvP games always have an identity crisis in trying to draw in a community large enough to play it. PvE games don't have that issue.

So, yeah. Entitled attitudes (and bad attitudes in general) are common amongst PvP gamers. The PvP community is full-stop toxic. It's a place I've never wanted to be. I've met some lovely people playing co-op things, and opposed to that I've had consistently bad experiences in anything with a competitive edge to it.

So... I'm as much not a fan of PvP as PvP players are fans of not paying for anything.

VeganGaro Avatar
1 Year ago

GTA is boring! ..haha