We’re smack-dab in the middle of July, so it’s about that time when gaming publications and podcasts reflect on what the year has brought us to this point. Hell, we’re guilty of it, too. A lot of what we see tend to be positive reflections, which is nice — video games are cool!
Video games can also be a quick and easy way to throw away dozens of your hard-earned dollars at once, which isn’t so cool. Any easy trap for the layperson to fall into is a shelf full of licensed product with flashy box, and 2013 has already produced a murderer’s row of sewage trying to pass for a game.
We’re limiting this to games you can get at retail, in the off chance that your dad or aunt see this and get you a gift card instead. If you buy a game like R.I.P.D. on PSN or XBLA, that’s your own damned fault, bud.
Image Source: The Score
Let’s lead things off with the saddest entry on the list. Remember how much fun the MLB 2K series used to be? From its time as a Sega Sports franchise on the Dreamcast all the way through the PS2 era, Visual Concepts’ baseball sim used to be the benchmark.
This year, 2K could barely renew their license in time to get a game out for the 2013 season. When people say that sports games are nothing more than roster updates, it’s usually said out of ignorance; MLB 2K13 made it the God’s honest truth. In fact, it’s worse than a carbon copy as it’s missing online leagues. Considering that it’s the only option for Xbox 360 players makes it all the more shameful.
Star Trek: The Video Game
There was some excitement for the game based on J.J. Abrams’s Star Trek films leading up to release, and I can’t quite remember why. Considering the headier subject matter that the classic films and shows are known to deftly touch on, one can only wonder who came up with the bright idea to adapt a game into a cover-based third-person shooter.
With its brainless script, propensity for crashing on a whim, and utterly boring gameplay, it was a wonder that Namco Bandai thought that they could get away with charging a full $60 for it. How utterly illogical.
Aliens: Colonial Marines
While it makes a fine co-op game to play ironically with your buddies, Aliens: Colonial Marines is an objectively bad piece of software. It’s ugly, buggy, and woefully written, but we’ve told you all of this before.
While we’ve all had a good ol’ time ragging on Gearbox’s Colonial Marines, the fact of the matter is that the game sold far too well considering the near-universal critical disdain for it. It was Sega’s second-highest selling game, shifting 1.31 million copies in the US and Europe according to the company’s financial reports. That’s an awful lot of people that shouldn’t be trusted to handle their own finances.