Recently, I created a list of my top ten games played in 2018 so far (here’s a link), so I thought I’d also make a list of the ten worst games I’ve played, as well! Since I play a lot of games, it would be impossible for me to love them all, so here’s a few that I didn’t care for.
Two disclaimers before we begin. First of all, these are only games I’ve completed start to finish, which means I don’t hate most of these games. I’d rather talk about games that have enough positive aspects to them that I was at least willing to finish them, rather than rant about how much I hated the Bubsy 3D‘s of the world. Secondly, just like in my favorites list, these are not 2018 releases, just games I played in 2018.
All right, let’s begin!
10. Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors
It just hurts to put this game on the list. After Danganronpa rose to become one of my favorite series of all time, I eagerly bought a copy of Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors, knowing this was a similar series of visual novels by the same company. It started off promisingly. In fact, I loved the game all the way through to the first ending I got, and at times, I thought I might have finally found something I like even more than Danganronpa.
Unfortunately, after I finished the game once, I went back to work through the other endings and quickly lost interest. Part of this is my own problem, as I am rarely a fan of games that force me to play through multiple times in order to get the full story, but part of it is the story itself. I don’t want to spoil anything, in case someone reads this and is intrigued by the game, but the endings took the plot in a direction that I didn’t care for. When I heard that the game was about a group of people being forced to play a game with their lives, I was picturing more of a psychological horror vibe than what this game is in reality.
9. Skylar and Plux: Adventure on Clover Island
This is a really cute 3D platformer that takes inspiration from games like Ratchet & Clank, where you control a cat-like creature and an accompanying bird on a journey through a variety of environments. It actually was a pretty cute game that takes about three hours to beat, but it controls well and the short length means it didn’t overstay its welcome.
Unfortunately, there is a sound glitch that plagued me the entire game. The music and sounds were so out of sync and warped-sounding that I had to mute the game to play it. Based on Steam reviews and forums, this is a common glitch that the developers did try to fix, but were unsuccessful. Since music and sound is an important aspect of gaming for me, especially for a 3D platformer, a lack of sound hindered my enjoyment to the point where I couldn’t recommend it to others.
8. Pac-Man 256
Pac-Man 256 is something I played more of than I should have, given that its just Pac-Man turned into an endless runner, but there is something strangely addicting about it. That said, the Steam version I played is just a port of a mobile game, so it doesn’t look great blown up onto a computer screen. There’s also really not enough content to warrant paying money for something that can be played for free on a phone. It’s probably not worth the time spent regardless, but if anyone really wants to try this game, play it on a mobile device.
7. Halo: Reach
First-person shooters are a genre I rarely play, because I like RPG-style progression systems, and FPS games rarely utilize them . That said, my boyfriend loves the Halo series, so I’ve spent the past several years playing through them in co-op one at a time. Halo: Reach was the last one I had yet to play, and since it was my boyfriend’s least favorite game in the series, my hopes weren’t terribly high. Still, I went in hoping for the best.
It wasn’t great. Halo games are always fun because of the frantic alien combat, but there wasn’t a ton of level variety, the story wasn’t interesting up until the very end of the game, and the music may actually be one of the most horrendous scores that I have ever heard in video gaming to this day. Halo 3: ODST is my favorite game from the series, so I really hoped that the other side game of the franchise would be equally good, but I was massively underwhelmed.
6. Night in the Woods
I had really high hopes for this darling of the indie community. The problem for Night in the Woods mostly came down to its length. I spent somewhere around ten to fifteen hours during my playthrough, and I think I would have been much more positive towards this game if the length had been half of that. The game got so monotonous after about seven hours, as I walked through the town and painstakingly talked to every single person in town in order to make sure I didn’t miss any plot developments.
Again, I’m not going to go into major spoiler territory on this list, but the game also does a radical shift in focus in the last few hours. The shift was jarring, and felt like the developers had two different plot ideas for this game and decided to just stitch them both together haphazardly. Overall, I wish I had liked this game far more than I ended up liking it.
5. The Norwood Suite
I got this game in a Humble Monthly and decided to give it a shot because it didn’t look overly long in length, and its screenshots made me wonder what on earth the game was about. Honestly, even after finishing the game, I didn’t really understand a lot about the game’s plot. I don’t actually believe the game is particularly bad, but I do believe that it is absolutely not for me at all. It’s got a very niche audience for people that like weird games, and I am clearly not one of those people.
I love Diablo-style action RPG loot-em-ups, so after having Deathspank go untouched in my Steam library for years, I decided to give it a try. At first, I really enjoyed it. It’s a genuinely funny and colorful game, something that’s a breath of fresh air in a genre that really likes dark colors and storylines about demonic influences. Unfortunately, the combat is really simplistic, with the only attacks consisting of the two weapons in Deathspank’s hands and a special ability he unleashes when a meter is filled. A combat system this simplistic does not go well with a game that took me fifteen hours to beat, so the game got on my nerves quickly.
3. Rusty Lake: Roots
Honestly, I didn’t like this game because it gave me the creeps. I know that’s a pretty lame reason to give for why I didn’t get along with a game that is otherwise a pretty stellar point-and-click adventure, but it’s got some graphic imagery and dark thematic elements that I really didn’t appreciate. Similarly to The Norwood Suite, I think I just wasn’t the intended audience for this game, so I wouldn’t necessarily want to dissuade others from giving it a try.
2. Galactic Missile Defense
There’s nothing wrong with this game, other than there’s just not much here. It feels less like a full-release Steam game, and more like that time I was asked to build a simple video game as an exercise in a computer coding class. In fact, if I remember correctly, I got this game as part of a Humble Bundle for a bunch of coding software, so it probably was given to me as a demonstration of what one of the programs I bought could do. Again, there’s nothing wrong with this game, but there’s really nothing worth playing here, either.
1. Sorry, James
Of all the games I’ve played this year, this is the only one I’ve actively disliked. I was drawn to this game because it had a storyline that appeared to involve computer technology, but the story didn’t hold my attention. A story being boring isn’t necessarily a bad thing in a puzzle game if the puzzles are good, but those were reminiscent of Sudoku without any of the fun. The graphics were also strange, making it sometimes difficult to actually read the numbers on the puzzles. Overall, I can’t think of anything I actually much cared for in this game, and I wouldn’t recommend it to others.
All right, there are my least favorite games of 2018 for the first half of the year. Let me know what your biggest disappointment this year has been so far!