9. Hatred’s launch and advertising
This is on the list for how the developer handled this game. Hatred got a lot of notoriety for being this super-graphic, isometric shooter where you do nothing, but shoot innocent civilians. It got a lot of attention for its controversial set-up, and the developers fought back against anyone who thought this was despicable. The developer did explain that the game wouldn’t have sold well or gotten any attention on Steam if they didn’t do this style of advertising. That would be somewhat commendable if the game wasn’t mediocre. Yeah, the game launched, and was considered a terrible game. Not because of the advertising, but because it was a bad game. Seriously, if they didn’t pull this stupid media stunt, people would have let this game die in the vapid flooded void of Steam. If you are going to boast about your game, at least make it good!
8. Project Cars
I honestly don’t know what drew me to this game. It’s beautiful, has multiple cars to drive and check out, and has some of the best sound design I have ever heard in a racing game. Outside of that, that is all I have to say that was good. I feel like this game didn’t really do much that was different from the other simulation racing games that are out on the market. It’s fine, and it might not be my cup of tea, but Project Cars was disappointing to me.
7. Rodea the Sky Soldier
Another game that went through development hell and it shows. While I do think this game is fun, you probably need to find a copy of the Wii U game that comes with the Wii version. Even then, the game might be fun, but it is really clunky. It has a story that doesn’t have a lot of weight to it, clunky controls/combat, and some visuals that really aren’t good looking. I know Rodea the Sky Soldier went through some tough development, but I also hope it will get a sequel since this game was made by the creator of the forgotten SEGA franchise Nights. I really wanted to love this game since it reaches that hidden gem mark for me, but it really needed a few more months of polish.
6. Randy Pitchford’s Lack of Responsibility
For those not in the know, Randy Pitchford is the head of Gearbox Software, the developer behind the upcoming Battleborn, and the popular Borderlands franchise. Last year, Gearbox broke free of the lawsuit that they and SEGA were in for Aliens: Colonial Marines, one of the worst games of 2013. Randy felt like Gearbox was not in the wrong, and denied that his company had any responsibility for Aliens: Colonial Marines’ failure. Listen, Randy, I am sure you are a nice guy, but your company lied to us about what went on during development, and the game was horrible. You shouldn’t feel proud that you sunk $10 mil of your own money on a game that is horrible. Oh, and just because games like Colonial Marines and Duke Nukem Forever sold a lot of copies, doesn’t make them good games. Have some humility and admit that you all messed up! This is why everyone loved Satoru Iwata. He admitted when the company messed up. You could learn a few things from him. I swear, if Battleborn fails, your company will be in trouble in terms of trust.
5. Video Game YouTube/streaming bullocks
Listen, video game companies/developers big and small. You shouldn’t be flagging things left and right. This is the internet age, you can have so much free advertising (good and bad, depending on the game) as long as you don’t pull stuff like copyright strikes and take-downs on the people showing off footage of the game. Don’t limit the viewability of your game unless you are really not proud of it. Seriously, take advantage of the internet!
4. Dying Light
While I respect and understand why so many people love this game, I couldn’t get into it. The story was mediocre and lazy, the combat and abilities don’t become good until multiple hours in, the variety of zombies was forgettable, the characters were uninteresting, and so on. Granted, once you got going within the game, it was mostly fun. The day and night mechanic made going out during the night to scavenge, deadly, with ultra-powerful zombies. It made that first chase really scary. This should have been better, but it wasn’t.
This should have been amazing. Apotheon was a 2D action game with a beautiful Greek pottery art style. Too bad the combat was clunky, some of the bosses were frustrating, the main character was boring and had no agency, and the overall story has been done to death. The combat was just so floaty, which made fights early on to be fun, but as time went on, the fights were annoying. I was really looking forward to this title, and sadly, it’s one that left me making more space on my PlayStation 4.
Man, I really wanted to love this game, but I feel like the advertising was much better than the actual game. It was repetitive, boring, and had so much wasted potential in its world. I like the idea of a sister wanting to save her dying brother, but the last-minute deus ex machina turn is never explained, and sort of comes out of nowhere. You see these deus ex machina beings throughout the entire game, but they are never fleshed out, nor is it explained what they do and why they did it. It’s just a shame when the consumer/gamer is thinking about how to make the game better than the actual developer.
1. Game developers messing up things that shouldn’t have been that hard!
If you didn’t have reasons to not trust big triple-A developers, then 2014, and 2015 should give you reasons to lose faith in them. Warner Bros. had two big releases on PC that were, and still are, broken, Batman Arkham Knight and Mortal Kombat X. Not only that, but they also made less-than-favorable business decisions, like putting in microtransactions. Seriously, Warner Bros., all you needed to do was take these two PC ports, and give them a developer that is good at PC ports! Were they just really freaking lazy to not even do that? The reason why Shadow of Mordor, and Mad Max’s PC ports were great was because they let the developers do all the work. Moving on, Namco Bandai shouldn’t have screwed up on making a decent Godzilla game, but they did! While I respect Activision for hiring Platinum Games for work, since they are an amazing company, what about their other projects that aren’t related to Platinum Games? Tony Hawk Pro Skater 5 crashed and burned, Black Ops III on PC crashed and burned, and it could have all been avoided if they had actually cared to make sure both games launched well. In the end, so many developers, big and small, had very simple, albeit complex jobs, and they shouldn’t have failed, but did. Hopefully, we will hit some kind of milestone where we don’t have to gritch at big developers/companies for making huge mistakes.