With so many great games in 2017, these are the videogame offerings that arrived feeling a little disappointing. What games left you underwhelmed?
It’s hard to believe we’re almost six months into 2017. With so many games vying to be considered “Game of the Year” already, it’s easy to forget that gamers have already had to navigate a number of disappointing offerings. From AAA-blockbusters through to indie darlings, the year has been a hotbed of disappointments across the board. So we figured we’d take stock of the year so far, looking at the games that were majorly disappointing to us.
Which videogame offerings have underwhelmed you so far in 2017?
8. Mario Superstars
Bad Mario games are hard to find. Nintendo are normally very careful when releasing titles featuring their premier plumber. Yet somehow this bizarre compilation of sports titles made its way to Nintendo 3DS this year – it wasn’t great.
Featuring a mix-up of various sports outings – the quality of these games varies wildly. Golf for example is almost laughably shallow against previous Mario Golf titles. The soccer game isn’t fun on any level, lacking depth or any kind of draw. The game features some decent modes – tennis being my personal highlight – but all of the modes within feel stripped back and ultimately lacking.
Oh and it’s insanely disappointing to see Nintendo chasing the microtransaction crowd so openly with this game. For shame Nintendo.
When originally showcased, Farpoint was hailed as the breakout VR first person shooter. It was intended to not only show that Sony’s VR platform could do the games we wanted, it could do them better and more immersive. We kind of wish they hadn’t bothered.
My limited experience with the game only cemented the notion that VR just isn’t where it needs to be right now. While the game begs to be taken seriously among modern shooters, it feels more like it was thawed out from the early 2000’s. The graphics are bland, the soundtrack is dull while the gameplay never excites. It adds up to a tedious experience, falling well behind the pack of top end first person shooters across the board.
It’s hard to recommend the game to anyone but those desperate to find a use for the PSVR headsets.
6. Super Bomberman R
The idea of sticking a Bomberman title onto Nintendo’s brand new Switch console made huge sense. The title screams multiplayer fun, and with Nintendo’s early slate of games needing something other than Breath of the Wild, Konami’s veteran series could have been the ticket. Sadly it was anything but.
The game is shockingly light on content for a full price release. The single player component could be best described as ‘lacking’, while the multiplayer mode was riddled with issues and slowdown – reducing early multiplayer sessions to Powerpoint slideshows. The game received patches to quell anger, but it’s hard to get over the feeling that Super Bomberman R would have been beter served as a cut price digital only game.
As it stands, the title is one of the Switch’s worth outings.
The rise in narrative driven videogames should be applauded. They can be fun, suspenseful and genuinely moving when done right. Sadly for gamers, Divide did anything but get it right.
Released in January of this year, Divide is the kind of game that wishes it was a movie. The story is intriguing and hints at some great ideas, but its the gameplay that trips the entire thing up. Bland level design mixes with some of the dullest twin-stick gameplay you’ll ever experience. The game struggles to keep things interesting, awkwardly expecting the gamer to do all the heavy lifting. It leads to long periods of frustration, as the game never really changes things up.
Divide had great potential to join other breakout hits this generation. Sadly it disappears up its own backside, leaving gamers wondering what the hell they were meant to get out of the mess.
4. Rain World
If we were judging games off visuals alone, Rain World would easily sit in the top bracket of games from this year. Sadly in every other respect, Rain World falls to a disappointing groan.
The decision to strip the game of videogame norms leaves it feeling amazingly open. The game wants you to explore and traverse its world without feeling forced. Sadly this huge scope creates an unfocused beast of a title that never really delivers on its great premise. Controls aren’t great while the difficulty spikes will leave some gamers genuinely frustrated.
Rain World feels like a great idea that just doesn’t translate into a great videogame. It’s a real shame as the pieces are all here for a wonderful outing. It just doesn’t come together – and that’s disappointing.
3. Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers: Mega Battle
When the trailer for this four player co-op landed, there was huge excitement for the title. Drawing on the hugely popular Power Rangers television show, it seemed like a no-brainer for the developers – and with a movie set to land alongside it, hopes were high for a great time.
Shame then that the game is shockingly poor, even for a movie cash-in. The iconic music is barely utilized, instead generic tones fill the backgrounds of almost every level. Add in the fact that the characters you control have such a limited pool of moves that you’ll be bored within minutes. Playing with friends is the only way to salvage something from this abysmal disaster of an outing.
Remember this one? It’s fair to say Playtonic’s love letter to Banjo-Kazooie awkwardly flies too close to the sun, in the process failing to deliver the killer title many expected.
Instead the game tries to pass off outdated mechanics and poor gameplay implementation as “nostalgic”. A poor checkpoint system. Awkward camera controls. A story that just doesn’t even try. It wouldn’t be so bad, except the worlds within Yooka-Laylee are so bloated and uninteresting, you’ll find yourself wondering what the point of it all is.
Perhaps the worst thing of all, Yooka-Laylee fails to carve out its own identity. It sticks too close to an outdated format that doesn’t work for what it wants to achieve. What should be an exciting tour-de-force for 3D platforming ends up feeling like a pale imitator – and that’s just not good enough.
1. Mass Effect Andromeda
After wrapping up the original trilogy of Mass Effect games, Bioware’s interstellar RPG could anywhere it fancied. It could choose from any story in the cosmos to home in on and take gamers on whatever grand adventure the developers wanted. So how on earth did we end up with a half-baked spin-off that all but crushed the franchise?
Andromeda’s issues are well noted. From facial animation hilarity through to a story that never kicks into second gear, Mass Effect Andromeda is everything fans of the series feared. It’s a fairly tedious experience, wrapped up in its own hype and self-worth. It teases greatness, but delivers underwhelming results, forcing some of the worst experiences the series has offered up.
Reports suggest Bioware have canned its planned sequel, and stuck the Mass Effect franchise back on ice. This should have been up there with Breath of the Wild and Horizon as a game of the year contender. Bioware have pedigree in this space – but Andromeda is just disappointing on every level.