Our favourite being crap at gaming excuses: "This isn't really my type of game", "I usually play on Xbox rather than PS3" and (this one is Fifa and PES specific) "I pressed cross instead of shoot". At some point in time we've heard, used and dismissed them all.
The truth is, nine times of out ten, they're just a cover. However, our excuse for the mess we made of playing Battlefield 3 multiplayer is 100 per cent genuine. Honest.
The mode was a co-operative game called Rush. Two teams of four fighting through a park, then a subway before a final firefight to take the Stock Exchange. Battlefield has also been about working together for a common goal, the last thing you need is a weak link. So we'll take this opportunity to apologise to our fellow journalists in the VIP behind-closed-doors demo.
Just as we were approaching the subway the dark roomed was flooded with light as the door, which our console was closest to, was flung open. Don't worry, that's not the full extent of the excuse - the identity of the person who entered is what's important. Standing there, giving us a greeting nod and proceeding to watch the action, was Steven Spielberg. You try to concentrate when that happens.
And there you have it. We still defeated the Russian enemy. We still got to try out the gameplay tweaks (shoot near an enemy and you reduce their combat awareness so it's easier for a temamate to take them out). And we still got a feel for the potential greatness of the game.
We also have a new excuse for screwing up durng a multiplayer session. Just remember - it won't work if you're playing split screen.
Too geeky a reference to end on? OK, we'll say this. Of all the games on the floor, one of the greatest living directors decided Battlefield 3 was the one he had to see. Now that should be enough to get you excited.
Battlefield 3 is released on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 in November