Bad Gift Guide - Five Recommendations

By Rich Shivener in Lists!
Wednesday, November 30, 2011 at 4:00 pm
Just like my uncle who gives me an XXXL Harley Davidson shirt  and lottery tickets every Christmas, some of your friends and family deserve weird, bad and downright horrible gifts for the holidays. So, as a gamer, you can exact revenge by offering some of the worst video games of 2011. Check out our ideas, and be sure to offer yours. 

5) Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon - Various:

Critics disassembled some parts of the game, concluding that it's markedly inferior to Transformers: War for Cybertron. The biggest malfunction is the driving, or taking your transformers to the road. Where's Michael Bay when you need him?

Metacritic score: 58, Xbox 360; 57, PS3, etc.

What we said:  "The graphics, while beautiful, are lifeless and suck a lot of energy out of the game. The entire vehicular mode is a garbled mess that only serves to frustrate the game play and bog down the story." 

What a another site said: "Most of the features that made War for Cybertron a standout are gone. Gone is co-operative play. Gone are several multiplayer modes, including Escalation. In their place are three standard multiplayer gametypes (deathmatch, team deathmatch, and conquest), and a campaign so short that it feels like it was based on an episode of the cartoon show rather than a movie." - Joystiq

4) BurgerTime World Tour - Xbox 360:

This is your chance to offer lukewarm update to a friend who loved the classic BurgerTime game. A 3D platformer, BurgerTime World Tour is decent, but it could use more salt.

Metacritc score: 52

What we said: "You're far too busy trying to avoid the obstacle in front of you to try and look across the void at the other side of the map and hatch a scheme for burger domination. The result leaves you circling over and over looking for every errant tomato slice, beef patty, or sesame seed bun you may have missed along the way. It's unintentionally frustrating and makes every new level feel old real quick."

What another site said: "The tacked-on boss fights don't do much to vary things up, nor do the added power-ups. Gadgets like rocket boosters and invincibility-giving energy drinks don't do much to break up the core flow of burger assemblage, and apart from a few weapons like pepper shakers and bludgeoning spatulas, there isn't much combat to speak of in the game, meaning you'll be jumping and avoiding enemies more often." - Giant Bomb

3) Minute to Win It - Xbox 360 Kinect:

Which is more tortuous: Guy Fieri's bleached tips or playing for fake money? You get both here. Video game shows are notoriously bad, aiming to mimic the excitement of scoring some serious dollars. Imagine asking your drunk uncle to play "Shoe Fly Shoe," as noted in the video above. We guess it could be a little funny.

Metacritic score: 50

What we said: "We have stumbled across a game so lame, so obnoxious, so... douchey that it just has to be shared with the world."

What another site said: "... it's hard to get beyond the frustrating control mechanics and revel in the success of winning one million fake dollars." - IGN

2) Wipeout in the Zone - Xbox 360 Kinect:

Glitches galore made this a nasty wipeout for several critics, including JD's top ninja, Mr. "Unbeatable" Zoss.

Metacritic score: 39

What we said: "You win this round, Wipeout. And you've given me enough to think about that I can't knock you too hard for your audio glitches, tedious replay and generally uninspired gameplay package. In fact, you've given me so much to think about that I can't assign a numerical value to your experience at all. So I'll just give you the most arbitrary score I can think of and move on. If you ever get a sequel, I think my soul may break in two."

What another site said: "Navigating the courses is a nightmare, but the troubles carry over to the audio as well. Intros from the announcers will often skip like a scratched audio CD, repeating the same 2-second clip over and over. Entire jokes will be repeated back to back to back, which was the case with a quip about cat whiskers that I heard three times in a row." - Game Informer

1) Duke Nukem Forever - Various:

Sorry, but poop throwing, dick jokes and lesbian action simply doesn't make Duke the king of first-person shooters. He is officially buried in discount bins and used-game sections - forever.

Metacritic score: 51, PS3; 49, Xbox 360, etc.

What we said: "Nor can Duke even seem shocking in his disregard for others - not in a world that's seen three God of War games. Kratos is in my mind the most awful gaming protagonist to date. He murders out of expediency and rage. He brutalizes without thought and (its implied) has committed rape more than once. Duke throws poop."

What another site said: "A festering irrelevance with nothing to offer the world. It's a game with an odious personality, one that could only endear itself to the sociopathic and mentally maladjusted. There may be life in Duke yet, but not his current incarnation. Not while his developers legitimately think he's cool and hilarious, rather than creepy and nauseating, and not while he's starring in games that can't even compete with budget titles." - Destructoid
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