5 Games That Get Undue Hate

Not too long ago, I tweeted regarding an unpopular gaming opinion: Clive Barker’s Jericho really isn’t bad.  Over the past couple of years, I’ve been seeing a lot of hate towards it, with many people describing it as one of the worst games ever, and this surprised me.  I played it a long time ago (at least that’s how it feels) and had a pretty good time.  It wasn’t perfect by any stretch, but there was a lot to enjoy about it.

Jericho was a horror FPS in which a special forces team enters a pocket dimension inside a magic box to fight a demon child.  Or something.  Anyway, it was squad focus, in which your character dies at the start, but survives as a ghost that can take command of any squad member (an interesting way of handling the usual ‘controlling different party members’ mechanic).  Each member had their own skills including resurrection, time slowing, and an awesome guided sniper bullet.  Whilst it was a bit generic at times, and the difficulty was all over the place, I wouldn’t call it a bad game.

Clive Barker's Jericho
I had fun playing this. I wouldn’t mind having a reboot of this with the problems dealt with.

This got me thinking about other games that seem to get more hate than they might deserve.  I’ve looked around for games that appear on worst games ever lists alongside the expected ones such as Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing, E.T., Little Britain, and Superman 64.  Below are five games included amongst these in spite of being far more acceptable.  I know I don’t need to state it, but this is my opinion.  So don’t be too upset.

Duke Nukem Forever

Let’s start off by pointing out that Duke Nukem Forever is not a good game.  It’s stuck in the past whilst trying to mock modern gaming conventions that it uses itself to try to stay relevant.  The whole development saga surrounding it is far too convoluted to go into here, but it took nearly 15 years for this game to finally arrive.  It looked dated, it played like a bog-standard shooter, and the level design was uninspired.

DNF
Look, I’m not saying this game was good. But it’s not as bad as some of the travesties that have been released in the past.

But is it something that’s as terrible as a game in which your truck accelerates infinitely when you go in reverse?  Is it as broken as the PC release of Arkham Knight?  Is it as embarrassing as *shudder* Super Seducer?  I would say no.  It’s just very ordinary, which is enough to disappoint a lot of people who had high hopes for it (even after a decade in development hell).  It’s not the worst game ever, but that doesn’t mean it’s worth playing.

Too Human

Flawed.  Flawed, flawed, flawed.  Too Human is another game with some issues.  There was a lawsuit that resulted in all physical copies being removed from store shelves.  I don’t know all the details, but it wasn’t because it was a bad game.  Too Human was very ambitious, with three planned games detailing a sort of cyberpunk vision of Norse mythology.  It was a neat idea and, in my opinion at least, played pretty well apart from the silly camera controls.

Too Human
Honestly, I think this is a pretty cool idea for a game.

Yes, it was quite grindy, and the death cutscene was unskippable and went on far too long.  There was also the fact the game itself was actually quite short with a plot that went nowhere (planned sequels, remember?) meaning that it felt a little incomplete.  Still, there’s a lot of disdain for Too Human in spite of the fact that it’s average at worst.

Yooka-Laylee

This one boggles my mind!  Yooka-Laylee is a good game.  It’s not perfect by any stretch, but there are portions of the internet that consider this to be on the level of games like Ride to Hell: Retribution. I genuinely can’t understand this.

Yooka Laylee Shovel Knight
If it’s good enough for Shovel Knight, it’s good enough for me!

There are flaws, yes, but the game itself works solidly enough and the mechanics aren’t bad.  I suspect a lot of the hate comes from people who wanted this to be a new Banjo-Kazooie, or that it wasn’t exactly like the games it aimed to imitate.  Regardless, there was nothing really wrong with it, and it certainly shouldn’t be bundled amongst the worst games ever.

No Man’s Sky

Ooooh, this is going to be a little contentious I think.  I see No Man’s Sky crop in a few ‘worst games ever’ lists and part of me understands that.  A lot of me doesn’t though, as once again, this isn’t a terrible game as such.  I would very much understand if someone threw it into a ‘most disappointing games’ list seeing as it didn’t do half the things the developers promised it would.  At first.

No Man's Sky Logo
Is it now someone’s sky?

By all accounts, No Man’s Sky is now much closer to the product that was promised.  The most recent patch has added a lot of content and a large number of people are much happier with their purchase than they were at launch.  Does this game deserve to be counted amongst the worst games of all time?  No.  But should lists be changed retroactively should an impressive new patch be released?  Well, that’s an argument for another day.

Mindjack

Yet again, a game that’s perhaps sub-par but isn’t nearly as terrible as the likes of E.T. and it’s ilk.  It was a third person shooter in which you could mindjack (THAT’S THE GAME’S NAME!) other characters to solve puzzles or murder baddies more effectively.  It was pretty generic in the combat department, and the story wasn’t great, but it worked well enough.

Mindjack
Sure does look generic…

It even had a cool mechanic in which other players could hack your game and mindjack an enemy to either assist you or try to take you down.  You could switch the option off so it wouldn’t be too obnoxious.  It was fine, if unimpressive so I’m very much of the opinion that including amongst a set of terrible games is a touch foolish.

Some others I see crop up!  Star Wars: The Force Unleashed and its sequel popped up a couple of times which I don’t really get.  Beyond being too short, they’re pretty good (apart from the star destroyer set piece).  I saw an instance of Prince of Persia: Warrior Within (too edgy but damn fun to play) and Prince of Persia ’08 (really very good and quite ahead of its time) for some reason.  Then there was Alpha Protocol which just made me angry.  It’s brilliant!  Play it!

PoP
Coming off the back of the really quite good Sands of Time trilogy probably didn’t help this too much.

What games do you like that seem to get more hate than they should?  I know ‘worst games ever’ lists are quite subjective but some things aren’t all that bad.  Let me know what you think!

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36 thoughts on “5 Games That Get Undue Hate

    1. Despise maybe, but would you consider them to be some of the worst games of all time? That’s kind of my point, as people seem to overreact with most of the games on this list. At least these ones work! Compare that to ET!

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  1. *nods* Jericho was great. Duke Nukem Forever is kinda fun if you clear the hype from your mind and give it a chance. I’m really tempted to try the “new” No Mans Sky, but don’t know when I’ll find the time.

    Too Human I actually really liked when it came out, but going back and playing it again years later it doesn’t hold up too well. It had great ideas, but man could those combat mechanics be clunky, especially the miserable boss fights.

    I would nominate Agony as a modern day example. Flawed, but not even remotely close to the “worst game ever” everyone makes it out to be. Sometimes I think a lot of people are just lucky and have never actually played a truly bad game (like Bullet Witch or Neverdead…)

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    1. Hey hey hey, I’ll hear nothing bad about Bullet Witch 😂. It’s alright-ish, but fairly boring. I’d count it as a poor EDF clone. I heard it’s getting a HD rerelease!

      I’m morbidly curious about Agony, but I don’t think I’d ever bother playing it. It’ll be a Let’s Play game for sometime I think.

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  2. For me it is probably summoner on PS2. Although not an overall bad metacritic score, it seems to be a bit like marmite. I think it was a game that stretched itself for the time, and although full of flaws (the loading screens. Good lord, the loading screens!) it was pretty fun with a decent combat system.

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    1. That name rings a bell but I don’t recall the game at all. There’s a lot to be said for games that are ahead of their time receiving negative feedback when they’re released. Do you remember that Jurassic Park game with the physics arm? If the technology was at the same level that the idea was, it could have been so much better.

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      1. I don’t remember the game, but agreed. Developers should always be pushing the boundaries of what they think is possible. Otherwise you just end up with hundreds of CODs. Oh wait…

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      2. I do wonder how COD’s sales are doing these days. I’m sure they’re turning over a huge profit, but I suspect that’s due to micro transactions and season passes rather than game sales.

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  3. I definitely agree with you on the ones I’ve played from those above at least. I really enjoyed that Prince of Persia game, it was a little different than most of the others, but a fun game nonetheless. The sequel for the DS was a little less solid but still fun. I also really like both Star Wars Unleashed titles.

    I think 2 games I would definitely mention are Sonic 2006 and Sonic Forces as games that people call utter rubish which I don’t agree with. The Sonic 2006 glitches are not as bad as people make them out to be and while Forces was incredibly rushed I still loved the core gameplay. Both of these games ended up being some of my favorite Sonic titles.

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    1. I only ever played the demo of 06 and found it a bit rough around the edges, but Sonic Forces is actually pretty fun for the most part. That’s very much one that was either loved or hated, with very little middle ground.

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      1. Agreed, it’s definitely a game where you’re on one edge or the other. It’s a shame that it was so rushed, I think it could have been known as one of the big Sonic games otherwise

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  4. I’d say a good example of games that get more hate than they deserve would be Sonic Adventure and its sequel. True, they foreshadowed the series’ general ineffectiveness in 3D, but they were, at the very least, passable, Indeed, Sonic Adventure 2 was my introduction to the series, and it was a solid entry.

    In a weird way, I also think Ride to Hell: Retribution gets an undue amount of heat. Now, don’t get me wrong; that game is irredeemably bad and has more problems than any other game I’ve ever played, but the absolute worst game of all time it is not; nothing will convince me that it’s a worse game than Metal Morph or NES Dragon’s Lair. Ride to Hell is at least fun to laugh at (albeit on very rare occasions), Metal Morph and NES Dragon’s Lair are complete torture to get through from start to finish.

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    1. Agreed on Sonic Adventure 2. It’s far from brilliant but it plays reasonably well (more so than Sonic Adventure).

      With Ride to Hell: Retribution, I can understand the general dislike for it due to the bugs alongside it being a bad game. But I suppose there is some merit to laughing at how bad it is!

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  5. Yooka-Laylee is a good game. I will definitely agree with you there. Never played Mindjack (or even heard of it), so no comment there.

    Every other game on the list, on the other hand, I did not enjoy playing. Out of all of them, I’d have to say No Man’s Sky was the biggest letdown. I agree with you that it is by no means terrible, it just overpromised and underdelivered.

    That being said, I wasn’t aware of the recent patch. Perhaps I’ll reinstall it and give it another go.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The thing is, them not being good games doesn’t suddenly make them the worst games of all time. They’re bad but at least they work, which is more than can be said for some games on Steam these days.

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  6. Agreed with Prince of Persia, I still find it one of the most beautiful games I’ve ever seen and so much fun to traverse. I always check reviews before I get games so I don’t have much, but …I think maybe the Ratchet & Clank remake? I found it bright, pretty, and fun!

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    1. I think the Ratchet & Clank remake was fairly well received (at least the game was), but I didn’t pick it up so I really can’t comment.

      That version of Prince of Persia was pretty damn good, but it came along at the wrong time. I remember reading many reviews that decried its lack of challenge, but if you were to release it today, it’d be referred to as a walking simulator and I bet it would have fared much better.

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    1. Oh it certainly deserves mockery. It set out to be a parody of modern games but ended up being a parody itself. However, I don’t think it’s one of the worst games ever made. One of the biggest let downs perhaps, but when you look at the state of some games that barely even function, it’s certainly better than them.

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