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Minesweeper: 14 Potential Disadvantages & Drawbacks (Luck, Visuals,…)

Last Updated on January 25, 2024 by Gamesver Team and JC Franco

If you are thinking about learning how to play Minesweeper, you may be wondering if there are any potential drawbacks or disadvantages? And rightly so. Who wants to play a game that has more cons than pros? So join us as we take a look at 14 potential drawbacks of this iconic game.

Like many games, Minesweeper has its share of drawbacks. For instance, it can be challenging to learn how to play Minesweeper. Even more so, people tend to find it difficult to play the game at first. However, with time and practice, the game should become easier to play. 

1. Minesweeper Is Hard To Understand

Some people find learning how to play Minesweeper a challenge. Although this is certainly not true for everyone, many people have struggled to grasp the concept. However, once you understand the concept, you are ready to go.

2. Minesweeper Is Difficult In The Beginning

After you understand the concept, it’s time to start playing. Initially, you may find the game difficult to play. This is because you are putting your learned knowledge into practice. But do not worry; after a while, the game should become easier to play. 

3. Minesweeper Game Could End Before You Start

Although Minesweeper is based mainly on the principles of logic and strategy, there are some elements of luck to it. For example, it is not uncommon for the first click to reveal a number 1. 

The problem lies in that it gives you no indication of where any mines are located. So, you are left with an (almost) entirely untouched board filled with hidden mines. The only thing you can do to keep the game moving forward is to click on any random block on the board in hopes it will give you more information. 

Therein lies the main problem. You can either click on a safe block or click on a mine. If you click on a mine, the game is over, thus, ending the game before it could even start.

4. Minesweeper’s Expert Mode Is Troublesome

Expert mode is not for everyone. And no, I am not talking about how difficult expert mode is. Instead, I am talking about the mechanics of this level. While many games of expert mode run smoothly, many people have pointed out one frustrating thing about this level; two unknown blocks at the end of the game. 

In this scenario, many people report that the neighboring numbered blocks are not helpful in figuring out which box has the mine. So you will ultimately have to choose one of those blocks and hope it does not contain a mine. 

You will have a 50/50 chance of hitting a mine when opening the block. As this often happens at the very end of the hardest difficulty level, it can rub people the wrong way – Don’t say we didn’t warn you!

5. You Can’t Play Minesweeper When You’re Tired

After a long day, sometimes you just want to get home, kick off your shoes, and play a relaxing game. Unfortunately, Minesweeper is not one of those ‘relaxing’ games you can play. 

To play Minesweeper, you need to be alert and put in some serious thought. If you are part of the few who find deducing facts and strategizing relaxing, then Minesweeper might be the game for you.

6. You Have To Be Alert All The Time To Play Minesweeper

With Minesweeper, you have to be on your A-game all the time. And I do mean all the time. One mistake, and the game is over. Unfortunately, slight mental lapses happen to the best of us, so you may find yourself making a mistake and having to restart the game more than you would like.

7. Not All Minesweeper Versions Have The Question Mark 

If you are unsure if a block contains a mine, you can then mark that block with a question mark. Once you have figured out if the block is safe or not, the question mark is changed to a flag or opened. The problem lies in that not all versions of Minesweeper allow you to mark a block with a question mark. 

While many people report never using the question marks, the question mark symbol can still be helpful to those learning how to play the game. Also, those who are used to using the question mark might have to do without it (depending on which version of Minesweeper you are playing).

8. Not All Minesweeper Versions Have The Same Rules For Flags

The most common version of Minesweeper lets you win once all the safe blocks are cleared – regardless of whether you place flags on the mines. However, there are versions of Minesweeper, albeit less common versions, that require you to place flags on all the mines to win. 

So if your board is cleared and the game hasn’t computed a win, you might have to flag all of the blocks with mines first. 

9. Minesweeper Is Not Preinstalled On Some PCs

Minesweeper may or may not be preinstalled on your PC, depending upon your Operating System and version of the Operating System. Minesweeper is a Microsoft game usually found preinstalled on Windows.

However, with some versions of Windows, you will no longer find Minesweeper preinstalled. As a result, you may need to download the game or play an online version.

10. Minesweeper Blocks Are Too Small

For some people, the blocks in Minesweeper might be a little too small for their liking. This can make reading the numbers more challenging and possibly make the game more difficult. 

Thankfully, there are ways we can get around this. For example, some versions allow you to zoom in, or you can zoom in using your browser settings. But for those who aren’t as tech-savvy, the default size of the board cause problems.

11. Minesweeper Can Become Addictive 

Minesweeper can become highly addictive. This means you can end up playing for hours at a time – far more than you intended. Give yourself a time limit of how many minutes/hours you can play a day and set a timer. Once the timer has gone off, you know your limit for the day has been reached, and stop playing. 

12. The Replay Mode In Minesweeper Is Cheating

If you hit a mine on Minesweeper, you have the option of replaying the last move. While this is an okay concept, it defeats the purpose of the game. The aim is to clear a board without hitting any mines. So using a replay button is akin to using cheat codes.

13. Not Many People Know How To Play Minesweeper

This isn’t the worst drawback, but sometimes you would like to be able to play against friends (some online versions), compare scores, or generally talk about the game. Unfortunately, as many people are unaware of the game’s basic concept, doing the things mentioned above can be hard. 

14. Minesweeper Has A Simple Layout

The typical Minesweeper version has a simple yet effective layout. However, some people may feel that the design and appeal of the layout can be summed up in one word; boring. 

Of course, the game’s layout will not affect your gaming abilities, but some might like a change in visual scenery over time instead of staring at a mostly gray board.

In Closing

Minesweeper can be a bit tricky to play at first. However, once you understand the concept and with a bit of practice, you will have passed the biggest hurdle. Afterward, you may encounter a few minor drawbacks, but nothing that will impact your ability to play.

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This article was co-authored by our team of in-house and freelance writers, and reviewed by our editors, who enjoy sharing their knowledge about their favorite games with others!

JC Franco
Editor | + posts

JC Franco serves as a New York-based editor for Gamesver. His interest for board games centers around chess, a pursuit he began in elementary school at the age of 9. Holding a Bachelor’s degree in Business from Mercyhurst University, JC brings a blend of business acumen and creative insight to his role. Beyond his editorial endeavors, he is a certified USPTA professional, imparting his knowledge in tennis to enthusiasts across the New York City Metropolitan area.