Short Stories Silly Lists

10 WORST games of the year!

We went on a journey. A journey to the darkest reaches of video entertainment. These aren’t just disappointing. They’re not just boring dime-a-dozen shovelware. No, these are worse. Long after the industry has crumbled, when the statues are rotten and the bodies are buried, these games will live on. Gazing. Seeing. Judging.

It will be the sole surviving evidence of our existence.

10. Plumber Problems

Okay, where do we even start with this one. What were they thinking?

Plumber Problems bills itself as a platformer, which isn’t too great a genre for a game with godawful controls, not helped by the fact that it is entirely controlled by the Wii Balance Board. Plumber Pete slides around like a greased turd dropped in an ice skating rink, and jumping is more of a gentle suggestion than an actual command to the mustachioed mouth-breather. I’d give this game a hard pass, if I were you.

9. Michael Mouse

What is it with popular mascots being adapted into terrible games? Michael Mouse is exceptionally bad in that upon installing it, the game actually forces you to call the Didny Headquarters just to validate your purchase and obtain an access code to the main menu. There, you are immediately greeted by a large red button inviting you to purchase the Moriarty Mallard pack. What the hell? Is this a game, or a promotional vehicle? Analysis of the level design points to the latter. Taking shortcuts is relentlessly punished with overlevelled enemies, forcing you to slowly walk through the various merchandise shops, where you are forced to minimal speed and the camera randomly zooms in on various t-shirts and mugs.

Next!

8. A Mirror’s Deceit

Ugh. The only thing worse than a bad video game is a bad ARTY game. There’s nothing to do, except walk around in some sort of art gallery, staring at mirrors. The reflection engine that was so heavily advertised barely works, oftentimes not showing your player character at all, or having various other inconsistencies. For me, it especially had problems with rendering shadows, causing various apparitions to form from time to time, disappearing when I’d turn around. For a game entirely about mirrors, that’s an unforgivable flaw.

7. Tacita Lives

What the hell is this? A godawful mockery of the JRPG genre, you play as some kind of horned dog, going around a city solving crimes and partaking in lackluster minigames. It wouldn’t be so bad if it didn’t have the main character be a horrifying animal-demon that has no basis in reality. For an universe based around realism, it simply fails to deliver what is expected. Add in the knowledge that the previous game in the series was a million times better, and you’ve got a recipe for disappointment.

6. Images On The Water

Take a bowl. Fill it. Figures will stare at you, mouths open with wonder. Are they in awe of you?

Look closer. They’re screaming.

5. Uncle Scrunt’s Barn

Uncle Scrunt always creeped me out as a kid, and this game’s graphics do not help on that front. The titular uncle looks downright disturbing when rendered in all it’s polygonal glory, and the dissonant clarinet soundtrack only furthers the unease felt while playing. You play as a child arriving at his barn, being put to work in various half-baked minigames that involve things like milking cows, taking naps on piles of hay (why does this require a quicktime event? I’ve never failed it, but what would happen if I did?), and chasing away varmints with a BB gun. I suppose it could be fun for fans of the TV Show. For the rest of us, it’d be better to play something actually good.

4. Clarity

We’re delving into the obvious propaganda works now. Crafted by the kooks at the Illumination Intitiative,  the game consists of mostly the same stuff they do on a daily basis: terrorizing libraries and causing traffic jams. The soundtrack seems to have a whispering voice in it, so that’s probably bad news. The mechanics can easily get on your nerves as well, as failing a QTE means you have to go all the way back to the start screen. No passwords, no checkpoints. No nothing.

The worst part about it is that it’s obviously trying to indoctrinate our children. No thanks.

3. Fuck Man

This bootleg copy of Pac-Man is notable for its daring game-over screen: an image of a dead body. Coupled with the loveable yellow chomper’s tendency to launch into a barrage of expletives anytime he gets a power pill, it makes for a rather distasteful experience. The scent of rotting meat emanates from the cartridge after playing, and no one seems to know how to fix it. All in all, the developers show that they do not value the players at all.

They also removed Ms. Fuck Man’s boobs since the preview screenshots, which is a move I do not agree with.

2. Mr. Meat

Mr. Meat is a gory first person shooter, based around the premise of a rampaging butcher running around a small town, slaughtering its inhabitants. Collected corpses can be brought to your butcher shop to exchange for upgrades and weapons. While a fine enough concept, it falls flat because the titular butcher can not stop talking. The first time he says “MMMM, MEATY”  after sawing up a defenseless old woman might be worth a chuckle, but that quickly falls flat once you realize that is his only line on using the chainsaw. The rest seems to be mostly pop culture jokes, which can even be increased at the start of the game by enabling a (thankfully optional) Funny Joke Mode. This has the result of switching out his “MMMM, MEATY” line with “MMMM, DOCTOR WHO” among other things.

On the main menu, there’s an option to buy extra “MEAT POINTS” with real money. While the game is almost criminally easy on account of none of your enemies fighting back, the inclusion of the possibility of microtransactions immediately made me hate this game just a bit more.

1. Funnyman

A circus management simulator. Just what the world needed.

Let’s see here. How about we start with the fact that it has always-online DRM? Microtransactions? Forces a pro-circus view on the player? No, let’s start over. This game is a piece of shit.

The simulation aspect is godawful. None of the economics make sense. How on earth does hiring a peanut salesman HARM my visitors? Why does that triple the amount of lawsuits my circus gets?

There’s an option to watch the shows your circus puts on, which is admittedly a cool feature. Sadly, in practise the cutscene engine breaks half the time, resulting in your knife thrower neatly pelting five cleavers into the ringmaster’s skull, and the show ending with the message that your show was a disaster. It seems shows can only end poorly if you’re actively watching them, meaning that if you want to actually PLAY, you should refrain from using this feature.

Perhaps worst of all are the parades. I’m serious, the less said about those, the better. I don’t know why a circus sim needs a full-featured gibbing engine and ragdoll physics, and I don’t WANT to know.

Rampaging elephants sound fun until you actually see them.





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