Bestselling crap

The critics panned them, but you bought them anyway - let's look at why

In general, we think you've got pretty good taste in games. You've made massive successes of stellar franchises like Ratchet & Clank, The Elder Scrolls and Katamari Damacy. You tend to like the things we like, and that's part of why we enjoy writing for you and telling you about all the cool games we think you'll get excited about playing.

Sometimes, though, you ignore our advice, which breaks our hearts a little. It's bad enough when you do it by passing up kickass experiences like Okami or Psychonauts, but nothing - nothing - pisses us off quite like seeing you make huge commercial hits out of awful games. It's part of our job to help steer your money toward the good stuff, so when we see games like 50 Cent: Bulletproof achieving double-mega-platinum status, it feels like a personal failure on our parts. And it's enough to make us wonder if you're even paying attention to what we say at all.

To illustrate what we mean, we've pulled together 10 of the worst games to ever achieve mass-market success, complete with sales figures and average scores from other outlets* to show that these aren't just our opinions. We'll show you what the publishers said, what reviewers said and then look at why you believed them over us. And maybe, just maybe, we can help you avoid these things in the future.

10. Spider-Man 3
2007 | Xbox 360, PS3, PS2, Wii, PC
Copies sold in US: More than 300,000 (after one month)
Average score: 58%

It's rare that you can tell a game is going to suck the first time you see it, but from the moment we laid eyes on Spider-Man 3, we somehow knew it had no soul. Maybe it was the game's shiny version of Manhattan, which looked suspiciously like a bunch of high-definition textures had been slapped onto the buildings from 2004's Spider-Man 2. Or maybe it was the stiff-looking combat, the shoddy "cineractive" minigames or the excited overemphasis on Spidey's black suit and its mysterious powers of anger. But whatever the case, a game that lets you swing through New York again as Spider-Man can't possibly be bad, right? That's what we thought, anyway.


After graduating from college in 2000 with a BA in journalism, I worked for five years as a copy editor, page designer and videogame-review columnist at a couple of mid-sized newspapers you've never heard of. My column eventually got me a freelancing gig with GMR magazine, which folded a few months later. I was hired on full-time by GamesRadar in late 2005, and have since been paid actual money to write silly articles about lovable blobs.
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