GameCentral readers admit to liking games that the majority dont, from the much-maligned Mass Effect: Andromeda to DRIV3R.
The subject for this weeks Hot Topic was suggested by reader Gannet, who asks what generally disliked game do you think is actually good? The game can be a commercial flop, have poor reviews, or just be something that nobody else you know likes. But we wanted to know why exactly you enjoy it.
We had plenty of suggestions, from famous flops like The Order: 1886 to the notorious No Mans Sky. Nobody felt ashamed about going against the grain though, even if they didnt understand other peoples attitudes to the games.
I dont think there is much debate about the most hated games of 2016 and 2017 being No Mans Sky and Star Wars: Battlefront II, respectively. But I have enjoyed these games and sunk hundreds of hours into each of them. Both are great examples of where legitimate grievances around launch controversies get taken up by YouTubers and the like who set a narrative that sticks.
Since its release No Mans Sky has had three major updates that have transformed the game, and a Metacritic user score of 7.9 for the Xbox One version is a fair reflection of the game you can play today.
Similarly, Battlefront II ditched the controversial microtransactions before launch, and those who stuck with the game have had free DLC added to what was already a solid and polished offering. In fact Battlefront II is worth the purchase price for Starfighter Assault alone!
Ive noticed the reputation of Fable II has shrunk more and more over the years, but when it first came out I loved it and it seemed to me that it was well regarded at the time. Maybe not an all-time classic but its only the third game and the rubbish spin-offs where everyone started saying that the whole franchise was bad.
I really liked the games friendly, British humour and voiceovers and the combat and role-playing stuff was just complicated enough for me without going too far in either direction. The graphics were great and things like building a family and the reaction to whether you were good or evil were new ideas at the time.
Im actually kind of surprised theres rumours of a new game now as it seems like its reputation has been dragged through the dirt but Id definitely be interested in a reboot and a return to Albion.
I tend to only play games that have received critical acclaim by GC and others. So I do not really have a badly reviewed game I love. I do however frequently find myself liking games that every other person I speak to dismisses out of hand. Games like Disgaea and Danganronpa, which are well known in gaming circles but completely alien to everyone else. Hearing things like, I thought you were a gamer? Why do you not play proper games? is pretty common.
My favourite game, I have played this year, is Hollow Knight. Again, well known by gamers but not well known to the public. With the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One releases I thought I would try and sing its praises a bit to my colleagues and friends.
I received a pretty much unanimous, That is probably good for a Switch game but PlayStation 4/Xbox One games need to have better graphics. Imagine if I was promoting Undertale, Minit, or West Of Loathing.
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Theres a lot of mediocre games Ive muddled through over the years but theres very few so-so games that I actually want more of. The exception to this is Star Wars: The Force Unleashed I and II. Despite critical Darth maulings all the way round I actually enjoyed them both. At first I thought this was down to me being a big Star Wars fan but then theres been plenty of games from the franchise that I really dislike and I despise the Battlefront games in particular.
Thinking on it, if they had a half decent camera then the gameplay would actually be very good and the story, especially the first one, was also enjoyable and at the time canon before the evil empire (Disney) tightened its grip.
If the Force is with me then I hope that in a studio far, far away… that a team of rebels are working on plans for The Force Unleashed III and Knights Of The Old Republic III. At the very least Id just like to see both trilogies finished in some shape or form.
I struggled with this Hot Topic because I rarely enjoy bad games and try not to buy any. Ill have to instead champion some commercial flops. Im assuming these titles were flops because they never received sequels.
Back in 2004 two games featuring telekinetic powers were released, Second Sight and Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy. Both games were reviewed quite well and I always see favourable comments about them online.
Psi-Ops especially was such a laugh and featured a myriad of inventive ways to dispatch enemies, including making their heads explode. Its a mystery to me as to why Psi-Ops wasnt more successful.
I suppose you could also include Freedom Fighters in the undeserved flop category, an enjoyable squad shooter with a fascinating premise of America under Soviet occupation. Again, another good game that apparently didnt sell well enough to merit a follow-up.
Hopefully all three of these aforementioned titles will someday be playable on modern consoles so that younger gamers can try them.
You are going to hate me for this, but I really enjoyed Dead Island and Dead Island: Riptide. I enjoyed the first one so much I even took the trouble to platinum it.
I also have to say that I found the multiplayer very enjoyable, even more so if playing with mates – a right laugh. Bring on the next one, although I am probably hoping its going to happen more than the GC team are.
captainbloodsnot (PSN ID)
Nuts to the consensus
RE: Unpopular games Ive liked. Could be loads here. Ive really enjoyed a load of games that have either been massive flops or critically panned. Kingdoms Of Amalur: Reckoning, I loved that and put hundreds of hours into it when everyone else was playing Skyrim, which bored me senseless.
After a bit of a think though, theres one game I genuinely adored and put oodles of hours into, tinkering away and hunting down every hidden thing but yet Ive seen it on so many awful games lists its untrue, as well as being a franchise killer: Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts.
I played that to death despite being neither a fan of platform games, or the franchise itself. Ive never spoken to anyone else that has a good word for it, yet I loved it. The ability to easily build some ridiculous contraption and instantly beez off on it was great at the time and I really liked the art style and how old school it all felt.
More recently I played an awful lot of Dying Light and that seems to have a poor reputation amongst gamers. Saying this, theres very few massively popular games Ive really enjoyed. In the past few years Ive tried out Overwatch, Minecraft, and Fortnite and didnt get on with any of them. And the real biggie this gen, GTA V: I played about five hours online after completing the single-player and sold the game.
Im also the only gaming person I know in real life thats not gonna be buying Red Dead Redemption II when it drops. I found the first a real chore and Im not remotely interested in a second serving. So maybe Im just a fan of bad games!
Im really looking forward to Resident Evil 2, Spyro Reignited, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, and Cyberpunk 2077 though. Im sure theyll get great reviews so perhaps its a 50/50 split. My favourite ever game is Shenmue, and you cant get more divisive than that with gamers who think its either amazing, or awful.
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