Maybe we're fools, or maybe we're masochists.
After celebrating the best games of 2010 (so far) last month, we could have stopped. We could have accepted that this was already a surprisingly fantastic year for the industry, and eagerly looked forward to the rest. We could have reminisced on our cherished time with masterpieces like Bayonetta, Red Dead Redemption and Super Mario Galaxy 2, never even knowing about the dark and depressing experiences that waited on the other end of the quality spectrum.
But no. We had to wonder. We had to investigate. We had to head over to Metacritic.com and find out which games were reviewed the absolute worst in 2010, and then share those sad and dismal results with you, our – up until this point – blissfully unaware readers. We had to go and ruin the whole year for everyone. We're sorry.
7) Iron Man 2
Platforms: 360 / PS3 / Wii / DS / PSP / PS2
Average Review Score: 46.5%
What the press release promised: “An intense cinematic gaming experience that combines familiar elements from both the movie and comic book universes."
What the game actually delivered: That press release quote was half right. Iron Man 2 does indeed combine "familiar elements" from both movies and comics – after years of disappointment and disillusionment, we expect videogames based on either medium to be automatic pieces of shit, so in that way, this latest attempt at adaptation is a complete success. Bravo?
Otherwise, this could be any generic, bargain bin action game. Movie? Robert Downey, Jr.'s not here, and the story takes place afterwards, so you never fight Whiplash or relive any of the sequel's memorable sequences. Comic? Sure, you fight a couple of super villains – literally two – but each of those encounters counts as an entire level, of which there are only eight in the game, including the introduction.
The best thing about Iron Man 2, in fact, is that this "cinematic gaming experience" only lasts around three or four hours. Look at the screenshot above. That's as realistic as the graphics get. Look at the screenshot below. That's as exciting as the gameplay gets. Are you sure you can even survive three or four minutes?
The nicest thing anyone had to say: “It’ll be over before you know it." – IGN
The most scathing review quote: “Rome wasn't built in a day, but Iron Man 2 might have been.” – Gamer.no
6) I'm Not Alone
Average Review Score: 44.8%
What the press release promised: "The spine-chiller of the year! Terror at every twist and turn. With a quick trigger finger and a sharp mind, the player explores the eerie mansion to reveal a horrifying secret."
What the game actually delivered: Sorry, but no matter how many synonyms for the word "scary" are thrown into that publicity pitch, I'm Not Alone has only one real shocker in store for players. Are you ready? Sure you want the game spoiled? Not planning on catching up this weekend? Okay, then…
It's broken! Constant crashes? Check. Graphical glitches? Check. Sluggish frame rate and spotty hit detection? Check and check. Incredibly long loading times that must be suffered through each and every time you enter or exit the menus to save your progress? You bet. Dialogue that occasionally slips into whole sections of German because the Austrian developers forgot to translate, or ran out of time and money before they could do so? Well, that's just bonus.
Those who have managed to suffer through all the bugs and shoddy programming to fully finish I'm Not Alone claim that the story and setting are rather spine-chilling at times. Supposedly you get to dig up murdered prostitutes in a backyard swamp or something similarly classy. Maybe that's enough for certain niche audiences, but the majority of survival-horror fans require good gameplay in addition to good gore.
The nicest thing anyone had to say: "To be fair it does feel like it's at least a decade out of date and being played on a 386." – PC Format
The most scathing review quote: "You want to bash the keyboard against your skull out of frustration." – Gamer Limit