games / Columns

The 8 Ball: Top 8 Overhyped Games

May 23, 2017 | Posted by Marc Morrison

Welcome all to another edition of The 8 Ball. This week, I’m here to talk about the hype for video games, and when it becomes a bad thing. Game companies always try to get people excited for their games but sometimes they go overboard and expectations are put forth that can never be met. With that said, here’s a list of games I feel didn’t make the cut in the least. I excluded Watch Dogs from this list because I knew, inherently, that they couldn’t meet their goals. Also, anything from Peter Molyneux is automatically not qualified because all of his games are overhyped and didn’t deliver. Let’s begin

#8: Gran Turismo 5

In the time it took Polyphony Digital to make Gran Turismo 5, three Forza Motorsport games had come out, and had started to really dethrone Gran Turismo as the racing champion. So when Gran Turismo 5 was released, amid tons of hype, it was supposed to revitalize the series as the number one racer. And…it didn’t. While it had over a thousand cars, only like 240 of them were “premium” cars, the other 800 were not premium which was…dumb. The damage modeling was poor, the inclusions of other racing disciplines was haphazard, and the game just cemented that Gran Turismo hasn’t kept up with the times and is getting pushed into irrelevancy. If anything Gran Turismo 6 and the still-unreleased Gran Turismo Sport show this is still the case.

#7: Street Fighter 5

It’s amazing that with Capcom revitalizing the fighting genre with Street Fighter 4, they almost killed it with Street Fighter 5. I’m being overly dramatic here, as stuff like Mortal Kombat and Guilty Gear have existed prior to SF4, but man, Capcom could not catch a break with Street Fighter 5. From a limited roster, to barely functioning servers, and a basic lack of functional modes that are in every other past fighting games in the past decade. Street Fighter 5 was hyped to be a big hit and it fell flat on its face.

#6: No Man’s Sky

I didn’t really have a huge problem with this game but it seemed to rile the general gaming public. I can kind of understand why, it was a case of promising the world and not really delivering on it. Space combat was a joke, there was no ship customization, no (real) faction interactions, no different planetary physics, no landable asteroids, etc. To be fair, a lot of this can be blamed on the PR approach and the team probably exceeding their grasp, but a lot can also be blamed for Sony for not trying to reign them in at all, and for highlighting the game so much.

#5: Fallout 4

Man, what a bummer this game is. For every one thing they do right they do two things wrong. Having no gear durability and having Nick Valentine are two pluses. But they are countered by the entire outpost building system, a weak story, technical issues, and some truly bizarre conversation choices. I really wanted to love Fallout 4 and there is some stuff in it to really enjoy, but the game just felt like a pale imitator compared to Fallout 3 or New Vegas. Also, the less said about the (mostly) severely disappointing DLC, the better.

#4: Spore

Read up everything I said about No Man’s Sky and amplify it about 3, and you get the hype with Spore. You had Will Wright making the all-game, where you take a single-celled organism from the microscopic stage all the way to empire building and space exploration. The problem is, you do it once and that’s it. Also, say what you want about No Man’s Sky slightly lame Atlas progression system, it was at least something. Once you hit the space part of Spore and the game opens up, there is no narrative hook to make you want to keep exploring. Spore was badly over-hyped, so much so that Will Wright left which is a shame, since he hasn’t really done much since.

#3: Call of Duty: Ghosts

Call of Duty: Ghosts, aka “The CoD game that no one talks about.” This was Infinity Ward’s big chance to step out of the disasters when West/Zampella left after Modern Warfare 2, and while Modern Warfare 3 was in production (so it doesn’t really count). And what was the big innovation with Ghosts? You could play as a dog for a few tightly scripted sequences. Wow, bold move. It wasn’t helped with a really lame story with almost nothing new added to the formula. When Brandon Routh was the most notable thing about your game, you done messed up somewhere. Also, ending the game on a big cliffhanger, was probably a bad move. Infinity Ward slightly redeemed themselves with Infinity Warfare, at least in my eyes, but not a lot of people seemed to care about that game either.

#2: The Order: 1886

Wow, what a mess. I bought this game from a Redbox during a sale for $6 and I paid about $8 too much for it. I literally finished the game in about 3 hours and platinum’d it about an hour after that. The game is just a bog-standard Gears of War clone, without any fun, inventive weapons or innovation. The few times you do get something unique, say the thermite gun, it is in tightly-scripted sequences and you discard it after the action is done. The trailers made it seem like you’d be hunting down werewolves’ non-stop, or other such monsters, and they are barely in the game at all. I’m glad Sony has gotten their act together with exclusives like Horizon Zero Dawn, because relying on trash like The Order 1886 would have been a mistake.

#1: Assassin’s Creed Unity

I’m not even going to talk about the myriad of technical issues with the game, because they honestly don’t matter. Yeah, it’s a busted piece of hot garbage, but it’s the least of Unity’s problems. Unity was supposed to be a clean break from the past AC games, with it being on (then) next-gen consoles only. This would allow for bigger environments, better AI, and massive crowds, and it really only delivered that last bit. They reworked the parkour system into an ungainly mess that still doesn’t feel 100% natural in Syndicate. There are constant enemies that shoot at you with guns and there is no defense against them. The map is an overblown nightmare, even by Ubisoft standards, with at least 3 different types of chests you could unlock. Combat was a chore, co-op wasn’t interesting, and they completely ditched any semblance of the present day narrative. The worst crime is, the entire story of “go find this skeleton” is a moot point, because once you do, you just throw it into the catacombs anyway. Well “thank you” Assassin’s Creed Unity for making the past 25 hours I played completely pointless. A lot of people have issues with Assassin’s Creed 3 and I don’t blame them. That game though, had some ambition to it. Unity, for all its faults, felt like the least ambitious game in the series (not counting Revelations), and seriously damaged the franchise as a whole.

For comments, list which overhyped games come to mind.

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article topics :

The 8 Ball (Games), Marc Morrison