Eurogamer Retro: Driv3r, Also: Comments

By John Walker on July 25th, 2011 at 10:16 am.

Ah, classy.

Yesterday saw Eurogamer display my retrospective of DrivTHREEr, Atari/Reflections’ astonishingly bad sequel to their loved franchise. In it I say things like,

“Vehicles drive like angry shopping trolleys filled with cannonballs being precariously pushed along a bowling alley. But on foot is when you get to enjoy your character (I’m sure he has a name) stumbling around like a man having his first go at walking, on a trampoline covered in marbles.”

And most interesting to me have been the comments beneath.

Driver 3 is empirically bad. Enjoyment of a game is certainly in the mind of the player, and the very point of my article is that I enjoy playing Driver 3 thanks to quite how dreadful it is. But there are certain things that we, as a gaming community, have agreed are simply unacceptable. Bugs are clearly one of them, and Driver 3 has so many that listing them would be an article of its own. But just the pop-up alone – something I completely forgot to mention when writing – is enough to condemn this game as a disaster. Buildings, trees, lampposts, people, and most significantly, cars, pop into existence just metres ahead of your vehicle. Something that makes the car chases the game is supposedly focused on a touch difficult to enjoy.

In a very telling defence of the game, Martin Edmondson spoke to Driving Games Pro about how the on-foot sections had let their game down. And of course there’s no question that these were abysmal. A character who struggles to walk, certainly can’t jump, and constantly gets stuck inside objects like walls, boats, bonnets, is a little bit problematic. Combined with the awful controls, enemy AI that deserves some sort of award for being so embarrassing, and a complete lack of animations to demonstrate if anyone’s being hit, just the basics are abysmal, before you even have the bugs of watching people die three times, fly off into the air, or judder in a corner like they’re slipping out of reality. But the inference is that the rest of the game was just fine, and people were overreacting.

Whereas in reality it’s an absolutely clusterfuck of brokenness, inane difficulty, dreadful checkpointing (always before a cutscene), nonsensical narrative, unexplained missions, rubberbanding and every other form of game-breaking AI cheating imaginable, dreary acting, and just bug upon bug upon bug.

So this fascinates me:

INSOMANiAC: I completed this twice on PS2, I actually though it was a good game, it just required a level of skill and precision that GTA fans didnt appreciate. It was what it was and I loved it for it.

Bloobat: have to say i disagree with the people who said it was a bad game, i really enjoyed it and played it for years, i thought the story was brilliant and the car damage fantastic!

BBIAJ: I bought this on launch day, still have it, completed it numerous times, will never get rid of it.

gonzax: Funny review, totally blown out of proportion, to be honest; the game is nowhere as bad as it says and by no means is one of the worst games ever, in fact, despite all of its flaws (and there’s a few) it is actually quite good, better than most shitty FPS games we get these days.

MasonMk: Loved this game when my dad had it on his xbox, then i brought it for myself a year later for PS2 and still loved it. So many hours i spent crushing cars on that draw bridge xD. Recently brought it back on PS2, and it’s still fun to play now. Brilliant game, don’t get the hate around it, all the people i know personally who had played it had loved it too.

Swifta: I can see why so many people hated this game but I absolutely loved it… Yeah it had it’s moments but I have played MUCH worse games!

They are six people among around 50 who responded, the majority of which told their own tales of how bad the game was. It’s not representative. But it’s significant. You could argue that such people are simply escapees of secure homes, but there are too many of them all at once, and it would be wrong to do so anyway. A large proportion of my brain is dedicated to feeling envious of that group – they get to be richly entertained where most only see disaster. And then I wonder if the rest of us are missing something – if we’re viewing the game as if through a glass darkly, and if we could only learn to open our eyes we too would discover the riches within. And then I think, they’re probably the reason Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer get to keep making movies.

So, rather than saying, “Huh, what’s up with THOSE guys?”, how about we all instead confess to which game it is that we genuinely enjoy (non-ironically) that is pretty ostensibly poop?

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227 Comments »

  1. Jimbo says:

    Alpha Protocol, apparently.

    Edit: also Assassin’s Creed 1.

    • jstar says:

      I thought Alpha Protocol could have been very good but was just buggy and rushed. This is just a result of of having too little money and therefore time to polish it.

      Driv3r was just fucking shit. And if anyone thought the story was good then they have clearly never read a book.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      AP is amazing despite ugliness and the odd bug, not shit because of bugs. It doesn’t count. :P

    • J. says:

      I loved Alpha Protocol. Really, really liked it. I could see the problems with it, sure, but I found the game to be thoroughly enjoyable (maybe because I was using the pistol skills). If it didn’t have major bugs or clunky combat, it would’ve been a real classic.

    • studenteternal says:

      AC1! really! I loved that game, I thought it was great, with the slight caveat that finding pointless flags is pointless. Yea the main character goes from total douche to, well still a total douche in his character arc, and the side missions were a bit repetitive, but they asked me to do things I thought were fun, and so did not really mind repeating them. I even like the odd sci-fi bits that apparently no one else does :)

      Oh yea, and AP was unfairly panned IMO, yes it had problems but I think its only really unforgivable sin was placing itself as a high espionagestealth game like splinter cell or metal gear solid when it was a third person shooter. It set the expectations wrong, and I think just wrong footed most reviewers. It had other problems too of course, but those I think were mostly balanced by the things it did great.

    • John P says:

      I don’t get the complaints about bugs in AP. I guess it had some because people keep talking about them (without mentioning any specifics), but I don’t recall any clear ‘this is broken’ bugs. I’d say the balance was way off in parts, but otherwise it’s pretty solid.

    • Dominic White says:

      I’ve played through Alpha Protocol 1.5 times now, and the ONLY bug I’ve encountered was some ragdoll comedy moments in the prologue act. I’d knock out a guard and instead of collapsing to the ground, his feet would sink six inches into the tarmac, causing his body to flop around uncontrollably as if the very earth itself was trying to beat him to death.

      But that’s just a purely graphical glitch. Otherwise, I found it rock solid, although some of the abiltiies are obviously WILDLY overpowered.

    • Lacero says:

      If I’d paid full price for it I’d have asked for my money back. As was, yeah it was fun for a few quid.

      The bugs I saw included enemies I’d killed not being there after a death and reload. This happened ALL the time. So I was under leveled for most of the game, so I died more, so… This wasn’t too bad as I didn’t have to fight them again, but then I got to bosses and it really hurt.

      Secondly sometimes these enemies would be plot based, or something. Because on two occasions the trigger for the next part of the linear level didn’t fire and I had to reload an old save.

      Thirdly, every other load resulted in a black screen or something, so I had to load again. Wit the loading times as they were I can’t imagine ever playing this game again. Thinking back I can’t see how I made it through the first time.

    • Zoombini says:

      I played AP for the 1st time about 6 months ago and really liked it. All the initial reviews talked about it being a buggy mess, but I honestly don’t remember a single bug. It wasn’t the best BlackIsle/Obsidian game (that honor still goes to the first 90% of KOTOR II), but I did enjoy it.

      Lesson: always wait 6 months to a year after any Obsidian game is release before playing. Worked for AP and F:NV (not KOTOR II though. Goddammit, that game is one of the greatest tragedies in the industry.)

    • Zyrxil says:

      I loved Alpha Protocol, but it deserved every bit of thrashing it got. The real innovation of the game was the design of letting you take missions in whatever order, and still have the choices you made affect missions you take later. That part was fantastic. Everything else was rather crummy. Bad level design; bad action; bad stealth; decent voice acting.

    • Dreamhacker says:

      I nth’ond Assassins Creed. I would have finished it if it didn’t CTD so much. But it was very enjoyable when it worked!

    • Premium User Badge Malibu Stacey says:

      I finished Assassins Creed without a single crash but I played (a mates borrowed copy) on PS3.
      I enjoyed it so much I bought the sequel (which I’m also enjoying when I take time off from the PC) & I’m very likely to get Brotherhood once I’m done with the second installment.

  2. jstar says:

    I don’t have one. For me games are unique in entertainment media. If it’s bad I can’t enjoy it at all.

    That’s because with a bad film, book or TV show the way in which I experience them does not change depending on it’s quality. By that I mean the experience of watching a good film or a bad film is the same in terms of the process. I listen, I watch etc etc. But the experience of playing a bad game is directly affected by the gameplay. When this is broken for me it is akin to watching a film but suddenly being unable to understand English.

  3. magnus says:

    Well let’s see, Hellforces for one and You Are Empty.

    • Ross Angus says:

      Oh, I like the look of You Are Empty.

    • Kefren says:

      I played through You Are Empty twice. The music and atmosphere were great, even though there were so many abysmal elements and it was completely linear.

  4. lemmy101 says:

    I added PERFECT Halo style aiming to this game (with the drifting auto-aim, acceleration etc) and my bosses made me take it out because it made the stupid AI too easy to shoot.

    • Nallen says:

      True story?

    • lemmy101 says:

      Ha yup. Probably shouldn’t say really but it pissed me off. ;)

    • Magnetude says:

      Question for you: The final boss (the guy with the shotgun that would kill you in no time, but would take literally 30 seconds of shooting from close range to die) – was he designed knowing that the only way to kill him was to edge round a wall until you could see him but he couldn’t see you?

      I genuinely loved this game (although I really had to force myself at times), but that annoyed the fuck out of me. I think I might have been playing on hardest though.

    • Zyrxil says:

      My only memory of Driv3r: the mission where you had to chase the female (traitor?) who was escaping on a motorcycle. Now, the mission was clearly designed so you had no chance of stopping her before a certain point; she would just out-accelerate you at every turn and she was literally glued to the bike so accidents couldn’t knock her off. Despite all that, I managed to car-slam her from the side hard enough to roll her over and end the mission way earlier than intended. Take that, cheating scripting!

  5. Premium User Badge Anthile says:

    *insert obnoxious comment regarding the term ‘retro’*

    • Premium User Badge Lambchops says:

      *Insert snarky reply about how I could happily have a retrospective about what I ate for breakfast this morning*

      Those cornflakes were delicious!

    • The Sentinel says:

      Well that’s still bad journalism then, because not making it clear which of the two slightly different versions of ‘retro’ you are using will inevitably lead to confusion. Ambiguity is ever the Writer’s Nemesis.

    • Dreamhacker says:

      Whoa, are you kidding? Ambiguity has been the stapleware, nay, the very soul even of many, if not all forms of writing since… well, since the invention of writing! Just take a moment to imagine writing jokes without ambiguity, or poetry, or comedy, or tragedy, or tragicomedy, the list goes on. Most modern comedy wouldn’t even work without it!

    • Ex Lion Tamer says:

      @The Sentinel: Wait, which Writer are you talking about?

  6. Telke says:

    I’m probably gonna get attacked for this, but here goes: CoD:MW2 and Black Ops. I enjoy the games, both SP and multiplayer.

    I mean, I complain constantly about their awful writing, MP balance, lack of optimization, etc. But they’re fun romps, it’s like playing through a nonstop Michael Bay set. I get the games cheaper than most (imports!), play it till the hackers start to turn up regularly, then quit. I don’t buy map packs; soon as one of those releases, I just stop playing.

    So yeah, those are my guilty pleasure.

    edit: Also, the Spec Ops missions in MW2 are a really good idea; I’m looking forward to them being fleshed out more in MW3.

    • Thants says:

      The single player in MW2 was a lot of fun. Sure it was ridiculous and on rails, but I don’t care, it was a blast.

    • Mark says:

      I loved MW2′s single player campaign, and I had much fun with the multiplayer. Okay, so the story was absolutely nutso, but I can’t think of any other game that packed so many memorable moments into one campaign. It was like a whole season’s worth of 24 in a few hours; a true blockbuster in the Hollywood fashion.

    • Premium User Badge wengart says:

      I enjoy the Call of Duty games just not enough to buy them every year. In fact I just rent them, but while i have them their good fun.

    • Wunce says:

      Spec Ops and Zombies are quite well done, I believe more games should throw in a little experimental mode along with a popular title to get people interested in other genres.

      I’ll admit to enjoying the MW2 campaign because it had just the right amount of action to stop me from questioning why the hell I was playing.

    • Premium User Badge phuzz says:

      Played through the SP campaign of MW2 the other day with a friend who’d not played it before and against my better judgement enjoyed it.
      Personally I ignore the plot (or lack of), and the biggest annoyance is the ever-spawn enemies and the section on the white house lawn where they can’t conceal quite how linear the game is using walls any more.

      I think my favourite “crap” game is just cause 2 though, but it’s not really that crap (apart from the plot/lack of).

    • Premium User Badge Mitthrawn says:

      Modern warfare 2 has literally the worst story ever written. Ever. It’s like a 12 year old half read a Tom Clancy novel and then put his ” ideas” on paper. I literally stayed through the credits just to see what person they had paid to write this excrement. I can’t believe they paid someone.

    • noclip says:

      For me I can’t think of a more viscerally intense fictional experience than the single-player Rio and sub base missions from MW2, in any medium. I’ll grant that this does depend largely with the player’s level of familiarity (rather, lack thereof) with the design conventions of contemporary shooters, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that when it works it WORKS. If you play it “right” without realizing that’s what you’re doing (setting aside the question of whether it’s right to have a “right” way) MW2 single player is jaw-droppingly entertaining if only in its sheer intensity.

    • Mman says:

      “bad” is one thing, but I do agree with COD and it’s clones being guilty pleasures in SP; I think the move towards almost literal one-path level design, decrease in interactivity, and lack of enemy variety (among other things) can only be bad for the genre in the long run, but it’s really easy to get lost in the flash and constant set-pieces and just enjoy the ride the first time.

  7. Cunzy1 1 says:

    Project Eden, Area 51 and Darkwatch are my guilty pleasures.

    • John Walker says:

      Project Eden was great!

    • Cunzy1 1 says:

      The console version.

    • Dominic White says:

      Never played the PS2 version of Project Eden, but yeah, seconding that the PC version was ace. Like a modernized Lost Vikings.

    • Cunzy1 1 says:

      It was a lot of fun and one of the few true four player co-op games for a long long time that demanded more than characters simeultaneously standing on four buttons or giving each other bunk ups a la Army of Two.

      More of that please.

    • brulleks says:

      I don’t remember anyone suggesting Project Eden was a universally disliked game though. It was just rated as ‘disappointing’ by most reviewers, considering what it had promised to do and the previous releases from the developers.

      Personally, I loved it. I found it to be one of the most atmospheric games ever created, and the fact that the challenge of the combat had been prioritised lower than the challenge of the puzzles for once was a trait worthy of celebration, not detraction.

    • Temple says:

      Project Eden was great and I’ve played it through twice with two different girlfriends who loved it.
      On the PS2.

      Area 51 was not too bad, which makes me have to go and look up Darkwatch.

    • Cunzy1 1 says:

      Sorry, I meant Broken Helix. Not Area 51.

    • Kefren says:

      Project Eden reminded me of Hired Guns a bit, one of my favourite Amiga games of all time.

  8. negativedge says:

    your problem is in viewing a video game as if it is a car engine. look, I know you probably wrote for a video game magazine/website in which the editor told you to give an 8 to anything that booted and used lens flair and a 7 to anything that didn’t; I know you probably spent literally years of your life interacting with and reading the work of PR people whose entire professional existence is shaped around shaping yours–but it is possible that there are ways of looking at things that aren’t misinformed distillations of Kantian aesthetics.

    which is not to say this game doesn’t fucking blow. I don’t know. just that the incredulity with which you are operating here is at least as quaint as the comments you have appointed yourself arbiter of.

    • John Walker says:

      Wow.

      Do you want to maybe back up any of those delightful accusations?

    • President Weasel says:

      misinformed distillations of Kantian aesthetics? Seriously?
      I for one read that and thought “what a clever, well-informed person he must be, in no wise using those words purely to show off”.

    • Magnetude says:

      “Lens flair”

    • Cunzy1 1 says:

      To be the lens, you gotta beat the lens!

    • Jorum says:

      “misinformed distillations of Kantian aesthetics”

      - This type of language is only allowed if you’re Will Self.

    • AbyssUK says:

      comment deleted, I fell for the troll nvm…

    • mondomau says:

      @ John, you should be flattered – RPS’ reputation as a thinking man’s PC gaming blog is finally attracting a better class of Troll, albeit the wearying ‘faux intelligentsia’ type.

    • WJonathan says:

      negativedge:
      random sense. words assortment Your not are making of

    • LennyLeonardo says:

      @negativedge:

      I suggest you edit your comment slightly.
      I think it would be improved if you deleted everything except “I don’t know”, because that’s the thrust of your argument, right?

    • Kirioth says:

      Sounds to me like negativeedge is talking a load of old bollocks.

    • Kieron Gillen says:

      Just to remind everyone, Negativedge is a self-confessed troll writing primarily to provoke response.

      KG

    • telpscorei says:

      So I read that comment, and then read about Kantian aesthetics a little bit, and now have a question. What manner of aesthetics should we view Driv3r under to make it seem less shite?

    • Premium User Badge Rhygadon says:

      Wow indeed.

      In case anyone is curious: Speaking as someone with a passing professional acquaintance with Kantian aesthetics, I can confirm that that accusation makes no sense at all. Points for creativity though; “misinformed distillations” has a nice ring to it.

      Also: John expressing wistful envy people whose experience is alien to him != John appointing himself arbiter of such. In fact, his entire conclusion is devoted to explicitly declining to play arbiter; that’s the whole point of the piece!

      If you’re going to pour scorn on thoughtful, creative people who are offering you free things to read, could you at least take the time to make sure you … wait, never mind, scratch that thought. Just don’t.

    • Ralphomon says:

      Given that RPS is one of the few video game journalism sites that doesn’t seem to operate as an extension of the industry PR machine, I don’t quite know what your left-field comment is trying to prove.

      Sometimes, a game just sucks, especially if it’s broken like Driv3r seems to be. But also, sometimes people will enjoy a sucky game. That’s not to say that all broken games suck, either, as New Vegas was as buggy as an ants’ nest but it was a good game.

    • Premium User Badge Rhygadon says:

      Damn, Kieron’s heads-up came after I started writing.

      telpscorei: Dada aesthetics, perhaps?

    • telpscorei says:

      Dada aesthetics would certainly seem to be the way that our esteemed author of the above piece has enjoyed it… Thanks for that Rhygadon, I did some more reading. It’s turning out to be a very productive day.

    • mpk says:

      What a Kant!

    • roryok says:

      oh @mpk you’re the living end

    • negativedge says:

      oh, Kieron. I’m flattered to have such a distinguished fan! unfortunately, just because something sounds true in your head doesn’t make it so. can’t exactly say I’m surprised that the nerd brigade takes issue with my using words they didn’t see in the last video game they played, though. sorry boys, but the narcissism that would dictate that anyone that knows something that you don’t must not know it at all is fairly in tune with what I am saying.

      the central claims here are as follows:

      -a game can be “empirically terrible”

      -games that are not smooth, feature bugs, or otherwise include features that are not as polished as the competition, are objectively (note: this is what you meant by empirically) bad

      this is the kind of writing that leads to a formula for “the 90 metacritic game” that is literally stapled to the wall of every major development studio in the world. it is the genesis of all the stuff this site likes to complain about when it comes to the state of modern (expensive) video game development. so when you say “how quaint of these pleb gamers to like a game that was not afforded a development time lengthy enough for extensive bug and play testing!”–well, yeah, that stuff couldn’t hurt, but on the list of Things That Make a Shitty Game, it’s pretty close to the bottom of the list.

    • Berzee says:

      maybe this article is really really good in some other way that you don’t like, mr. edge

    • Marijn says:

      We should just send Tim Langdell after him.

    • Dozer says:

      The irony is that John Walker rose to fame by playing incredibly bad games, and writing about how terrible they were. Completely the wrong journalist to accuse of hyping up rubbish games!

  9. icupnimpn2 says:

    For me the marks of truly bad games are mediocrity and extreme averageness. Games that are extraordinary in some way tend to be enjoyable or fascinating at least on some level. This goes for games that are extraordinarily awful as well as games that are extraordinarily well-made and innovative. That is why I will always remember a game like Illbleed for the Dreamcast, but I have forgotten 99% of the games I have played on the PS2.

  10. Fitzmogwai says:

    The glaring aberration in my games collection. My dark secret. Yoda Stories.

    • Premium User Badge sasayan says:

      Played that for hours. Ah, the follies of youth.

    • P7uen says:

      I got printed in PCG about 15 years ago for liking Yoda Stories.

      It was way better than Indy’s Desktop Adventures.

    • Wilson says:

      @P7uen – When I read ‘Yoda Stories’ I immediately thought of ‘Indy’s Desktop Adventures’. Despite never having played Yoda Stories, I’m going to claim that you are totally and utterly wrong. IDA was a classic of its time, and has never been surpassed as the peak of the windowed/tiled fighting/exploration game genre.

  11. Premium User Badge Tom-INH says:

    That second screenshot amuses me since one of my cats is called Tico. Did the mission involve taking him to the vet but he legged it out the catflap?

  12. Lemming says:

    I….I liked the Icewind Dale series. I know they aren’t a patch on Baldur’s Gate, being mainly cut down to excuses to fight things but I still enjoyed the artwork and wondering what monsters were around the next corner. That frozen natural history museum set piece was incredible. Maybe they aren’t considered truly awful, but I know Baldur’s Gate fans tend to sneer at them. I actually finished them, unlike Neverwinter Nights which I bought and hated after five minutes….and then did the same with the sequel.

    • Werthead says:

      I think ICEWIND DALE gets ragged on purely in comparison to TORMENT and the BG series. Taken on its own merits, it’s a fine, action-focused RPG but which still has some good dialogue, interesting quests and fantastic artwork and music.

      I think the three Infinity Engine franchises actually complement one another very well: BG is the broad, traditional fantasy epic, TORMENT is the arty, literary, original masterpiece and ICEWIND DALE is the not-totally-unintelligent fun action movie. There’s room for all three in the world.

    • BooleanBob says:

      Big fan of Icewind Dale myself, although I don’t think it’s commonly reviled in terms of reputation, just overshadowed by its bigger brothers. Werthead is right on the money; all three games are different, but as long as you don’t expect one to be the other or have some crazy stake invested in which is the ONE TRUE GAME then there’s much to admire in all of ‘em.

    • Premium User Badge Rhygadon says:

      Agreed. Torment of course had the better story and writing, but the combat was really weak. (Intentionally, or so I hear, but still.) BG was bigger and more original than Icewind, but also more broken and more dependent on set piece battles. The Icewind games provided varied, strategically interesting, at-least-semi-balanced D&D party combat in a compelling and unusual environment, and I don’t think anyone else has achieved that since the SSI days.

    • Zoombini says:

      I liked Icewind Dale much more after I read this LP:

      http://lparchive.org/Icewind-Dale-2/

    • pierec says:

      I really liked the first Icewind Dale for that pen&paper session atmosphere. It had some nice setpieces and it really should be celebrated for what it was – an oldschool dungeon crawl adventure.

    • Berzee says:

      Ok, so, Icewind Dale story. I asked for these games when I was a child, knowing little about them aside from the cool screenshots on the back. Why did I ask for them?

      Because I thought they were about a guy named Dale whose nickname was “Icewind” — and that sounded AWESOME.

      When I got the games and realized that a Dale was a kind of Valley, and it was just Icewind Valley…well, it was still pretty fun I suppose, but I never beat any of them because I was disappointed that my main character wasn’t the legendary hero “Icewind” Dale.

  13. Magnetude says:

    God I loved this game. I made myself like it. Even though they ruined the series’ best feature – the survivor mode, where you run away from the police until they ram into a wall – by adding cops with guns who popped your tires and made it unplayable (though you could win forever by driving to the top of a car park and listening to the police repeatedly crash into the scenery below until they exploded).

    Even though the series’ other great feature – the deep and entertaining replay mode – would occasionally forget what actually happened and make up a new replay instead.

    Even though the final boss seemed to be designed so you had to exploit the AI to beat him by inching round a corner enough that you could shoot him (for 2 full minutes until he died), but not enough that he would realise what was happening and kill you with his insanely powerful shotgun.

    It was the bugs that made this game. The combination of the rubberbanding the computer applied when it thought you weren’t looking and the fact the police would speed up the angrier they got (oh lord he’s getting away, bugger… oh hang on, there’s another gear down here!) would occasionally see a Peugeot accelerate to 200mph, hit a speedbump and clear a house.

    I loved this game on PS2. I made myself love it despite how hopelessly broken it was. Though, from the sound of it, the PC version took it above and beyond. How’s the mod community?

  14. Muzman says:

    Deus Ex: Invisible War

    • John P says:

      This too. There’s a lot about it that’s rubbish, but at the same time … it’s got something.

    • Muzman says:

      Yeah. I usually point to the… I can’t even say story.. the underlying theme, I suppose, of the game as its big redeeming feature. It’s actually trying to be a proper sequel to the first and follow its ideas further, and intelligently too. You just have to forgive it rather a lot to notice.

      Plus clonking people with the baton just never gets old.

    • Ross Angus says:

      NG Resonance is an excellent character (the hologram version, naturally). Genuinely great writing, and years before GladOS.

    • roryok says:

      oh yeah! forgot about that one. I actually loved that.

    • sinister agent says:

      Nnngh. Deus Ex 2 is not a bad game. At all.

      And yeah, the NG Resonance thing in particular was terrific and very thought-provoking.

  15. Jae Armstrong says:

    I took me a while to remember, but it came to me in the end: Turok. The second one, on the N64.

    It just isn’t in me to hate a game where you fight laser gun wielding dinosaurs with a gun whose bullets home in on brains, drill inside and then explode.

    Plus, it was a 25 hour+ game with six levels. Never felt anything less than properly massive.

  16. MiniMatt says:

    If you want a seriously bat-shit insane comment wha?! moment simply go to any Daily Mail story and click to sort by best rated.

    Most of them are too icky to quote but the gist of today’s crop appears to be that when blond haired blue eyed Christians go mental it’s still somehow the fault of brown people.

  17. AbyssUK says:

    Easy… Codename Eagle… I even liked the single player :P

    Also Terminator Future Shock, got slated and I loved the thing, Skynet was even better..

    I also loved SimAnt on the SNES so am a bit strange…

    • Angel Dust says:

      I seem to recall those Terminator games got good reviews at the time. Thanks for reminding me of them by the way; they were brilliant, moody and intense games. Someone (probably not Bethesda these days) should have a crack at doing another one.

    • Jimbo says:

      Codename Eagle is a fantastic answer. Any game where you can strafe swim as fast as you can swim forwards is a-ok in my book.

      And Future Shock had the most amazing sound test.

  18. Magnetude says:

    Ah. It would appear your comment system chooses to discard too-long comments without warning. How annoying.

    Basically, I loved this game on PS2 (on which it was fairly broken), but it sounds like it was even more broken on PC. And looking at the comments, it’s mostly console people bitching at you. Take the consoletoy version out for a spin sometime, treat yourself John

    • President Weasel says:

      Played it on console; it was pretty terrible. It was as if it had been made by people who had had recent Grand Theft Auto games described to them but had never actually seen them.

    • Magnetude says:

      Another brilliant bit of arrogance from Drivthrer was adding in the killable Tommy Vercetti lookalikes (who all hilariously wore armbands). Abandoning a perfectly good game concept to instead make a shoddy knockoff of a much more famous and well loved game, while at the same time trying to take the piss out of it? That’s the kind of attitude that made it so loveable.

    • John Walker says:

      In fairness, most of the comments on EG slagging it off are on console too.

    • WJonathan says:

      Especially considering that swimming was the only thing Driver 3 did better than GTA, simply because they chose to allow it at all (though it really added nothing to the gameplay). Every other gameplay mechanic of D3 was appreciably worse than those of GTA.

    • Cunzy1 1 says:

      Even the horse steering?

    • Magnetude says:

      Oh, I’m not trying to say it wasn’t a mess on console – I did write a post in which I praised its many, many bugs that was thrown away for being too long (I have a lot to say about this game). I just don’t recall it being quite this hilariously broken.

      I think my favourite (oh fuck off firefox autocorrect, I definitely changed you to EN-GB already) bug might have been the replay editor which sometimes forgot crucial details of the replay and would start to just make it up. So the gobsmackingly perfect triple corkscrew jump ramp escape you’d been waiting to see would be forgotten in favour of a farce which was often more entertaining.

  19. WMain00 says:

    Deadly Premonitions

  20. Mark says:

    Just because you enjoy a piece of music, film or a video game doesn’t make it good.

    Can’t think of a game I enjoyed that was poop, but I’m playing a game right now that I think is bad and that everybody else thinks is good: Castlevania Lords of Shadow. Never have I raged so hard and so long. So glad I’m selling it next weekend.

  21. drewski says:

    Fallout 3.

    Right?

    • Magnetude says:

      Bethesda have this amazing talent for making people overlook how broken their games are. It’s amazing.

      And I don’t mean they make ‘bad’ games. I played Oblivion and Fallout 3 to death, without mods. But they’re both so broken and awkward. The weak combat and horrible animations and dry graphics and insane glitches. And yet I kept playing.

      Historians will look back on the new Fallouts and wonder what the fuck we were smoking that this seemed acceptable to us in the same era as Crysis, Minecraft and Shogun 2: Total War. Mark my words.

    • WJonathan says:

      Marked! I will contact you from the future and judge your words.

    • Lemming says:

      I don’t think its that big a mystery about Bethesda’s games. The odd glitch here and there is insignificant with that kind of scope and just sheer quantity of game. You expect a few glitches in a sandbox that detailed and big.

    • westyfield says:

      I was going to say Fallout 3 as well. Loads of people seem to hate it, but I loved it. It was fairly buggy, and crashed a lot on my PC (somehow even though it was fullscreen, the mouse could still go outside the game which resulted in it minimising and crashing), but I’ve played at least 70 hours of it all the same.

    • Wezz6400 says:

      I don’t think Fallout 3 belongs on the list. It’s a good game, not great (quite a few things that keep it from that) but the gameplay is great, the world is interesting and well designed, the quests are diverse and entertaining, it’s good. The only thing that isn’t good about it are the loads, and loads of bugs. However personally I feel that the game is so good that doesn’t ruin it, though it certainly is part of why it’s not great (among the bad animations, and the fact that the storyline is clearly written for players playing good and doesn’t make a lot of sense when you’re playing evil).

  22. CaspianRoach says:

    For a few minutes there I was thinking this was the new Driver game. Thank god it isn’t.

  23. Evilpigeon says:

    http://www.gamerankings.com/ps2/583311-seek-and-destroy/index.html

    Seek and destroy, I picked it up for a fiver at a tesco somewhere. It’s an absolutely horrible game, buggy, wayy too easy and the story makes little sense. However there was one aspect that made it worth playing; the tank customisation was awesome and it made up for everything. Once you’d unlocked parts the missions became extremely free-form due to the number of different ways you could make you tank ridiculously overpowered: Flying sherman with homing rockets? No problem, feel like being basically invulnerable and one shotting everything? Also possible. Or maybe you just wanted to be able to drive faster than the tank turrets could rotate, there was so many ways to break the game. Naturally it made playing split screen versus mode insanely fun.

    • evilbobthebob says:

      THAT GAME. I didn’t think anyone else ever bought it. It’s just SO SILLY and SO CRAZY and terrible and great at the same time. I honestly don’t know what the developers were thinking at the time.

  24. MiniMatt says:

    And on topic…
    Hellgate London
    Auto Assault

    Both ostensibly poop (well, mebe, Hellgate I think at least gatherered a zeitgeist of “held promise but dismally flawed”) but I did love them.

  25. Flint says:

    Blood 2 is this for me. The level design can be insanely cryptic and maze-like (and let’s not forget that you also have to hunt teeny-tiny keycards in said mazes). The AI is horrendous to the point that you’d imagine enemies walking against walls was programmed behaviour. Countless, countless bugs from amusing (enemy spawning from a portal only to fall through the ground) to gamebreaking (cutscene never triggering after defeating a boss, leaving you stuck in the boss chamber with no way to continue. Or menu graphics disappearing leaving you to navigate through them via sound and memory only). Gore level so high it’s downright stupid (stabbing an enemy on his foot with a knife causes them to extravagantly explode). Let’s not forget the horrible, horrible acting and writing as well: I first owned the game as a pirate copy that lacked all cutscene dialogue, leaving me to come up my own dialogue for the pantomime cutscenes, and when I finally bought the real deal (from a flea market) and heard what the characters were actually saying, I longed back to my own version of the events.

    It’s a terrible game.

    And I’ve completed it around 5 times during my life.

  26. Premium User Badge Nero says:

    Eternity’s Child. Yeah you might call the controls a bit poop and will probably be no more chapters, but I enjoyed it. It’s also the game that I’ve spent the most time in a level editor with, many hours spent there. Also, the music was fantastic.

  27. JackShandy says:

    Kingdom Hearts.

    • Chris D says:

      Kingdom Hearts is fantastic and I will not hear a word said against it. Well, apart from some stuff about the spaceship sequences.

    • Gadriel says:

      Kingdom Hearts was a fine game. The sequel less so, but still not awful. It’s the FANS of the series that drive me to ire.

  28. Premium User Badge sasayan says:

    X-Com Enforcer

    Sure the game was terrible and had nothing to do with the rest of the series, but there’s just something about 90s action one-liners being delivered in a robot voice that had me laughing the whole way through.

  29. President Weasel says:

    For me it’s Master of Orion 3. It was clearly unfinished, the manual described stuff that wasn’t in the game, they’d obviously reduced the fleet sizes at the last minute, it degenerated into a spam ships and grind fest once you had out-researched your opponents, it wasn’t even all that much fun yet I still put hours and hours and hours into that game. I almost managed to persuade myself I was playing the game it should have been instead of the game it turned out to be.

    • sinister agent says:

      I really enjoyed this when I got it last year. It needs patching, to take out the most crappy of the bugs (things like the apparently random diplomacy messages, where people get angry with you for no reason at all, and mix up their messages so they say things like “pathetic meatbag, your destruction is at hand. Please take this vast quantity of money as a token of our appreciation and consider not destroying our humble, peace-loving people.”

      I think the reason I like it, and there’s nothing quite like it, is that it gets the sense of macro-management right. You can and should delegate to the AI and focus on the bigger picture, and that’s an interesting system to play with.

  30. Angel Dust says:

    Daikatana, and more recently Duke Nukem Forever. I win, right?

    To elaborate: While I can pretentiously pontificate on obscure, impenetrable and moody Eastern European games (‘The Void’ was the game of the last decade; ‘Cryostasis’ is an underlooked gem with one of the greatest game stories ever) as much as next ‘games as art’ dork, I have a crippling weakness for B grade shooters. Particularly those with lots of superficial variety i.e environments, weapons etc.

    • TLGAthena says:

      Daikatana… I am ashamed I even gave money of mine to take that game… it was -beyond- terrible…

    • Mechorpheus says:

      Oh dear, I too gave Mr Romero money to be ‘made his bitch’. Good lord that game was shockingly bad, made worse by the fact that I felt duty bound to defend the bloody thing as I’d spend money on it. Of specific issue was the bug which prevented your side-kicks from walking down a small step, thereby not allowing you to get to the last boss fight. Pretty much summed it up when they patched out the ‘collect the gems to save your game’ system…….

      Duke Nukem Forever…… started out OK I thought (well not brilliant, but at least had potential), then shat it all away over the next few levels. The last bit in the Dam, and the last bloody bossfight were absolutely dreadful. Not a game I’ll play again, yet I still play Duke Nukem 3d regularly, so that tells you all you need to know right?

  31. Ultra Superior says:

    Two Worlds Two :S I loved the spell making mechanics, especially the spell that created a vortex, bunch of anvils and a firestorm, sucking enemies in it, setting them on fire and punching them with anvils. The ragdoll physics and collisions of thirty or so anvils caused victims to lift off and fly then falling down dead. It was teh craziest.

    • Dave Mongoose says:

      I’ve not played the sequel, but the first Two Worlds is a game I enjoyed.

      Yea, the voice acting was dreadful and the controls were almost as bad as the Gothic series, but there was a huge variety of weapons and armour, a lot of skills, and a quest / faction system that presented moral choices. It’s very much a 70% kind of game – good ideas but flawed execution.

      What I liked most about it was the continuous character progression: identical pieces of armour, identical weapons or identical spells could be combined to improve the stats, so there was always something you could scavenge from human enemies to make yourself that little bit better.

      The first Witcher game is another game that got mediocre reviews but I found enjoyable, although I didn’t play it until after the ‘enhanced edition’ patch that fixed most of the complaints.

  32. roryok says:

    I loved Oblivion. I didn’t even realise it was ‘bug-filled’ until ages after I finished it and found people ranting about how dodgy it was. I don’t remember encountering any bugs at all. Same goes for Fallout 3. Played through, no bugs, thoroughly enjoyed it (although I did install one sniping mod).

    Everyone gives Bethesda a hard time about Oblivion and I can’t undestand why. It was great! That said, no Elder Scrolls game has ever recaptured the magic that Daggerfall cast on me.

    • MuscleHorse says:

      Oblivion is great once you triple it’s file-size with rebalancing and content mods.

    • Ultra Superior says:

      oh come on, we’re talking ‘poop’ games here. Oblivion poop? Get real.

    • roryok says:

      sorry, the post was supposed to be a reply to the one about fallout 3 / oblivion a few posts up. my bad.

    • Jae Armstrong says:

      Everyone gives Bethesda a hard time about Oblivion and I can’t undestand why.

      It’s not the bugs. I’m not sure I found any bugs in it either. It is because it is a gaping wasteland of a game devoid of life and soul.

      Oblivion was my first Bethesda game; I went into it entirely cold, on the back of nothing more than the fact that PCG had given it a “pretty good”. What I found was the single worst CRPG I have ever played. Now, it’s possible that I simply haven’t played enough RPGs. Or that I haven’t played enough bad ones. But there are crappy generic knockoff JRPGs with zero gameplay and plots that would embarass a thirteen year old I’ve had more enjoyment of than Oblivion.

  33. MuscleHorse says:

    This one’s a bit older and I had no idea of what the critical or general opinion was of it until years later, when the internet had arrived and I was stroking my chin, reminiscing on glories past; Privateer 2: The Darkening.
    I’ve always loved space sims and being a, then unknown, amnesiac Clive Owen blasting around the universe seemed lots of fun. I especially enjoyed the hilariously wonky, looping graphics at each individual space station. If I remember correctly there were a few FMV sequences where if you selected the wrong at pivotal moments, you died. It also had John Hurt as a space bar man.

    • D says:

      Those FMVs and the space stations (especially the unique landing animations for each planet in the game) were amazing to me. A thirteen year old learning the finer points of space trading, ferrying black market goods such as robotic prostitutes and human organs, spending the last few credits on a full stock of top-notch missiles, hunting for military grade ECCM systems and the elusive “special reward” lasers (which I never managed to find). Hiring a Monolith merchant and never having to worry about escorting it properly, because that thing was a flying fortress.

      That game was far from bad, but I had never played any other space sims to compare it with.

  34. Dominic White says:

    The entire Earth Defense Force series. They’re wonky, wobbly games that feel like they’re held together with sticky-tape and happy thoughts. This is completely appropriate, given that they’re inspired by zero-budget B-movies with theremin soundtracks and rubber and/or papier mache monsters.

    RPS’s own ex-Kieron loves em’ too.

    http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/earth-defence-force-2017-review

    • Kieron Gillen says:

      THEY ARE AMAZING!!!!

      KG

    • Dominic White says:

      I’m just hoping that the rumors are true and the next Sandlot-developed game in the series is a modern-spec update/remake of the second PS2 game. To put it into perspective – the EDF 2017 final boss? The sky-blotting mothership? Yeah, you fight that halfway through the game. Turns out it’s just a scout. Things escalate from there.

      Also, mile-long centipedes.

    • sinister agent says:

      EDF is wonderful. None of its technical shortcomings matter. Oh, improving them would probably help the game, sure, but it’s not acually necessary to fix them to make it an absurdly fun game.

  35. Premium User Badge Lambchops says:

    Nothing springs to mind for me, certainly not in the “non-ironically” bracket, as I’m pretty sure my love for Disaster: Day of Crisis is largely because of the ludicrous plot dialogue and minigames and entirely in spite of the absolutely dire driving sequences.

    Actually now that I think about it a bit more the only opportunity I really had to buy unquestionably awful games was as a kid as since then I’ve always relied on positive reviews and word of mouth. So one day delving in a bargain bucket I did buy two undeniably awful games; Shakii the Wolf (an absolutely dire platformer which I didn’t enjoy even as an easily amused youngster) and Huygen’s Disclosure (http://uk.gamespot.com/pc/adventure/huygensdisclosure/review.html) which I actually did enjoy despite it visiting cruel death for absolutely bizarre reasons and being mostly a convoluted, confusing and rather ugly looking (even for the time) mess. I definitely have fond memories of it and I did actuall complete it. Also what’s wrong with a zebra with an eyeball grafted on it’s arse? More of this in games please!

    • Cunzy1 1 says:

      Disaster Day of Crisis is brilliant. In particular I remember laughing too hard to be frustrated by one of the driving bits where you are escaping a pyroclastic flow and large boulders are procedurally launched in your direction and them randomly bounce around the road making them impossible to predict and deadly to run into.

      I also love the portable stream of water he carries around, represented by a glass of water on the HUD and the fact that some of the victims are so tired/injured they can’t move. Until you give them a cracker.

      Brilliant.

  36. Premium User Badge Colthor says:

    SpaceForce: Rogue Universe. I played the rather generous demo a lot, and then bought the game on the strength of it.
    It was obviously flawed, but when it was reviewed by Jim in PCG, getting mullered in a tiny review and scoring 35%… Ouch! I remember thinking that his criticisms were fair, they just didn’t bother me nearly as much as him.
    The review (longer than in the mag, I think) is here:
    http://www.computerandvideogames.com/167495/reviews/space-force-rogue-universe-review/
    I may not have bothered with the story mode at all, although I remember the intro video being a, um, masterpiece.

    EDIT: Because it won’t let me post another comment:

    Oh! And due to one of those hilarious misunderstandings in a game shop by my then-girlfriend, I got Starship Troopers as a Christmas present one year.

    I put off playing it for ages, but eventually felt obliged. Maybe several hundred megabytes of patch helped, but I quite enjoyed it, in its stupid-FPS way. Moreso than my first playthrough of Half-Life 2, which can probably be put down to expectations; I went into one expecting it to be unbearably dire, so when it was vaguely amusing shoot-the-beasties I quite liked it; I went into the other expecting the second coming and got a railroaded corridor shooter with crap guns, too few types of baddie with AI seemingly worse than its predecessor, obnoxious find-and-hide-behind-the-rocket-crate boss-fights, infuriating ‘friendlies’ who would run up to give you a hug five seconds after telling them to sod off (and whom you couldn’t even kill to be rid of), and a baddie who seemed very much to not be the baddie, but that you must destroy because you get no choice in anything at all: all must be dictated from on high to ensure optimal focus-tested player enjoyment. Designer knows best!

    I later re-played Half-Life 2, and despite expecting to still hate it – and discovering that all my criticisms were quite valid – I had a good time. How it would change focus, almost become a different game, every hour or so. The amount of different ideas crammed in to the journey. Ignoring the intended solution to the battery/gate puzzle and building a ramp to jump the buggy over it, throwing off the designer’s shackles for just a few moments. It was great.

    So I suppose there are no good games, and no bad games: only expectations. If you go into everything in life expecting to hate it, you will actually enjoy it more. So I submit that Dragon Age: Origins actually had – from the purchaser’s point of view – the best advertising campaign ever.

    • Premium User Badge Colthor says:

      This isn’t a duplicate comment. Why do you hate me, WordPress? :’(

      Oh! And due to one of those hilarious misunderstandings in a game shop by my then-girlfriend, I got Starship Troopers as a Christmas present one year.

      I put off playing it for ages, but eventually felt obliged. Maybe several hundred megabytes of patch helped, but I quite enjoyed it, in its stupid-FPS way. Moreso than my first playthrough of Half-Life 2, which can probably be put down to expectations; I went into one expecting it to be unbearably dire, so when it was vaguely amusing shoot-the-beasties I quite liked it; I went into the other expecting the second coming and got a railroaded corridor shooter with crap guns, too few types of baddie with AI seemingly worse than its predecessor, obnoxious find-and-hide-behind-the-rocket-crate boss-fights, infuriating ‘friendlies’ who would run up to give you a hug five seconds after telling them to sod off (and whom you couldn’t even kill to be rid of), and a baddie who seemed very much to not be the baddie, but that you must destroy because you get no choice in anything at all: all must be dictated from on high to ensure optimal focus-tested player enjoyment. Designer knows best!

      I later re-played Half-Life 2, and despite expecting to still hate it – and discovering that all my criticisms were quite valid – I had a good time. How it would change focus, almost become a different game, every hour or so. The amount of different ideas crammed in to the journey. Ignoring the intended solution to the battery/gate puzzle and building a ramp to jump the buggy over it, throwing off the designer’s shackles for just a few moments. It was great.

      So I suppose there are no good games, and no bad games: only expectations. If you go into everything in life expecting to hate it, you will actually enjoy it more. So I submit that Dragon Age: Origins actually had – from the purchaser’s point of view – the best advertising campaign ever.

  37. Syrion says:

    Far Cry 2. I could agree to all the flaws that were pointed out by all the (many) people who hated the game, yet I loved it and had fun with it for such a long time.
    After a while I was able to dodge most of the major shortcomings (respawning guard posts – speed through them, jump to your car’s gun, disable the inevitable followers, jump back, go on driving like nothing happened), and the most common complaint of it being monotonous could be defeated by making use of the wide range of fun guns and thus “creating” the variety yourself. Lastly, the constant boring trips through the empty world weren’t boring if you could appreciate the serenity and beauty of the landscapes, switching between car and boat trips, and planning your route with bus stops in mind.

    I may just be one of comparatively few players who could enjoy Far Cry 2 like that, but I consider us lucky :)

    • pepper says:

      There is this gem hidden in Far Cry 2, I play it the same way you do, and its great. Yet I agree with all that can be said about its shortcomings.

  38. Premium User Badge Anthile says:

    Army Men. All of it.

    • Gadriel says:

      Those games are generally considered bad? I had no idea. I thought they were all phenomenal.

  39. sonofsanta says:

    Recently? Probably Viking: Battle for Asgard on the Toybox 360. Reviewed fairly mediocrely all round but ticked my boxes and played to completion, even through the incredibly-unfair-and-cheaty final boss battle. I suspect this is because it had a series of maps that you slowly took back control of, in accordance with Jim’s “games are about tidying up” theory. Same for AssCreed 1 – repetitive and mechanical as anything, but you were taking chunks of the map back bit by bit.

    With regards to the PC I can’t really think of anything, but I do sometimes think that the games that review in the 70s are my favourites; I have no expectations of them, they have none of me, and we can both just spend 20 hours in each other’s company relaxing and having fun.

  40. Hides-His-Eyes says:

    Fahrenheit!

    • Kaira- says:

      Ah yes, Fahrenheit. I remember the devs said in some interview they actually had some other ending for the game. I’d love to see it, if it would make any more sense than “I am fighting the internet as if I am from Matrix” and all that jazz.

  41. Kieron Gillen says:

    Postal 2? I’ll defend Postal 2, but it’s rubbish.

    KG

    • ChaosSmurf says:

      I read “Portal 2″ and was like HOW HAS THIS NOT GOT COMMENTS but then, alas.

    • Premium User Badge Rhygadon says:

      Yeah. I don’t think any game has ever inspired as much pure *curiosity* as Postal 2. Strained offensiveness notwithstanding, you just couldn’t predict what would be around the next corner, and it went to places that no other game has, before or since. (Perhaps because they’re bad places to go, but still.)

      Plus, “waiting in line” as a back-of-box bullet point was high genius. And the burned corpses were the most genuinely disturbing that I’ve yet seen — so much so that I couldn’t really bear to use the flamethrower.

  42. Werthead says:

    Force Commander. I played it to completion and enjoyed it. I really liked the 3D game engine (a major shift away from the 2D or 3D-but-with-2D-playing-angles), found the story interesting and the fact that there wasn’t even much of an attempt to balance the two sides (because the Rebels should be on the back seat and using sneaky tactics to win) refreshing, though obviously frustrating in multiplayer.

    Unfortunately, I’ve tried a couple of times over the years to replay but it is pretty dull by modern standards, with a clunky interface. I suspect FC was good considering what was around at the time, but since GROUND CONTROL came out immediately afterwards with a far superior interface and game engine, that’s made FC difficult to enjoy in retrospect (and I replayed GC recently and it remains excellent 11 years on). Still, I don’t think it deserved the hammering it got on release.

  43. Ross Angus says:

    For me, it’s the Chrome Engine based Sniper: Art of Victory. It’s always in Game for £3. It’s really simple and basic, and the voice acting is terrible, but I really enjoyed it.

  44. Premium User Badge LTK says:

    I enjoyed the first Red Faction on the PC, even if I do hear it wasn’t universally liked. The second one was shit on all accounts though.

    Deus Ex: Invisible War was also a lot more compelling to me than it appeared to be to most people.

    • D says:

      Red Faction 1 had some of the best headshots I’d ever seen, and I think is the only reason I played it so much.

    • The Sentinel says:

      Red Faction 1 was a decent little shooter. It started so well…then deteriorated into a dull generic experience far away from the promise of it’s geo-mod capabilities. People were extra down on it because of that inability to fulfil it’s potential but it’s still really good fun in parts.

    • Mman says:

      When I think about it’s actually Red Faction 2 that probably comes closest to a bad game I enjoyed unironically; I played RF1 and 2 not too long ago, and, while I freely admit RF1 is a better game in most ways it also had some issues that soured the overall game for me, like the ridiculous snipers that are really accurate and can shoot you through walls.

      With RF2 I turned down the difficulty and just went along with the ride, and ended up having more fun with it by doing that; especially when you add the awesomely bad dialogue/voice acting/story and the fact your starting weapon is a grenade launcher. It was pretty much like playing the game equivalent of Commando for me.

  45. Hammelbamf says:

    I had fun with Far Cry 2 for a while. Hellgate London, too.
    I eventually stopped playing them because of the repeated flaws and it got boring, but I had fun while it lasted.

    • Thants says:

      Far Cry 2 isn’t even remotely poop.

    • Hammelbamf says:

      But not even in somalia every car turns aroudn and begins to shoot at you. after a while it got weird.

  46. thegooseking says:

    I really, really want to hate Bully (particularly the PC version, the control system of which is just bizarre. Why no, inverting my mouselook shouldn’t also invert the mouse in the point-and-click minigames. Why do you ask? Let’s not even talk about the framerate issues in the timing-based games even on my relatively up-to-date hardware…).

    But somehow, somehow I just can’t. Somehow I keep going back.

    • pierec says:

      I’ve recently played Bully with a x360 pad. It was a thoroughly pleasant experience. Game was surprisingly well-written and had some fun ideas.

    • Eukatheude says:

      Yeah, i liked it a lot too. Maybe it went a bit too far on the last part, which sometimes feels like they wanted to wrap up an ending asap, but i enjoyed its feel, the music (though repetitive) and the rest of the writing.

  47. Joe Duck says:

    For me it is the Virtual Skipper series. It is a very bad game subject, with horrible simulation, boring gameplay, unfortunate control choice and bad graphics. And yet periodically I give it a spin to see if it has ever progressed to become something worthy of anyone’s time. It has not.

  48. BooleanBob says:

    Ace Ventura.

  49. Premium User Badge Bluerps says:

    I’m not sure the question makes sense for me. The moment I truly (non-ironically) enjoy a game, I cannot perceive it as bad anymore. I mean, sure, some games are riddled with bugs, or the writing is crap, or what have you, but if I can play them, and get some fun out of that, then that redeems them from everything that is wrong with them.

    On the other hand, I’ve never played a game which had so many problems as Driv3r (or Soldner) and was still genuinely entertaining, so maybe I simply lack the proper experience to answer the question.

  50. ryryryan says:

    YES! Good article! I loved DRIV3R (lol), it was easily one of my most played PS2 games. It was so unbelievably flawed, but that didn’t stop it from being fun – and at the end of the day that’s what matters most.
    I suppose my other controversial choice would be Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness (console box sorry luls). Yup, I love that game. I’ll even go as far as saying it was the most enjoyable Tomb Raider game for me. It was slow and had terrible controls, but the story was fun and the hard difficulty was a great challenge. Also some of the levels where you breake into the Louvre were awesome.

    • Ross Angus says:

      Oh, it was PC too. I bought it on launch day. It cured me of Tomb Raiding.

    • Mman says:

      While I found AOD mostly terrible, it had a few levels/moments I loved where I could see hints of what it had potential to be (as opposed to what it actually ended up as). Plus the soundtrack is amazing. Though that’s less “bad games I enjoyed” and more “bad games I found minor redeeming value in”.