I've written a lot about Agile recently. I enjoy the methodology.
I’m also working on waterfall project. As a Practice that focuses on Agile, it’s easy to criticise Waterfall, so I spent the weekend rereading my Prince2 textbook.
Having refreshed my memory, turns out it's a good methodology.
Sound set of Principles and Themes, which details everything you need to think about in a very structured way. What it doesn't tell you is that after you've read the textbook you need to execute it... and to do this well takes a lot of skill and effort.
Without the skill and effort it’s the same as any other badly executed methodology.
Take the focus of too many projects; the implementation date. My experience tells me everyone grabs the end date from the plan, and that's the date you get held to. That's not a fault of the methodology, just the people using it. Prince2 suggest that you work to a visible planning horizon; one at which you can accurately predict outcomes (a bit like agile!)
Prince2 also suggests you plan for quality, risk, dependencies and change. It even recommends processes that support their identification and maintenance. Of course, if these are poorly executed (or not executed at all) then there should be no great surprises when it all falls apart.
So it isn’t about the methodology, it’s about the people you surround yourself with.
No surprises there!