11. Just Dance 2
Released: Oct. 14
We’ve never been fans of Just Dance’s box-art choices, although this year’s are just a bit better than 2009’s. However, there’s something about the UK version that just rubs us the wrong way.
It’s kind of hideous to begin with, but there’s… hold on, there it is…
Is it just us, or…?
Nope, definitely Kim Jong Il.
12. Canada Hunt
Released: May 18
What the…? We already made fun of this stupid thing last year! Did its publishers learn NOTHING!?
13. Busy Scissors
Released: Oct. 26
Ignoring the pink background, cheap-looking presentation, inexplicable sidelining of the Redken sponsor logo and faintly annoying “girl game” stigma, probably the biggest problem with this box is that it features what must be one of the most basic, boring hairstyles imaginable, at least from a stylist’s point of view. Assuming anyone at all wants to buy this game, it’s going to be because they want to get creative with hair – not because they want to cut straight lines for hours on end.
14. Monster Frenzy
Released: May 25
You can just tell this game must be fantastic, since the box is giving us such a clear idea of what, if anything, it is.
15. Family Gameshow
Released: May 4
Why is it that the games aimed at families with children are always the most nightmare-inducing? There’s something deeply off-putting about the host’s face, like he’s a bobblehead come to life, and if you spend too long looking at it, his phony smile takes on more sinister dimensions. There’s a pleading desperation in his eyes, as if he’s begging the viewer to please buy his game and put him out of his misery. This is the face of a man who’s trapped inside an endless OHMYGOD
Above: YOUR SOUL IS HIS NOW, FOOL
16. Robinson Crusoe 2 and the Cursed Pirates
Released: Sept. 13
Wow, this one’s dismal. It’s cluttered, it’s boring, and probably the worst thing about it is that it is that the character art was lifted from the UK version, which – aside from unpolished art that gives Robinson an expression most people reserve for realizing they’ve just shit their pants – was much more compelling overall.
Above: “A mysterious ship graveyard? No, no, NO! Americans want caves”
Note also that the US version adds the “2” to the title, and the “Sequel to the #1 best seller!” sell text. Since I’m pretty sure there’s never been a #1 best-selling game about Robinson Crusoe, I’ll guess that the “best seller” they’re talking about is actually the 1719 novel, known as history’s first mass-market bestseller.
I’m honestly not sure whether to be angry at a ploy that cynical, or to applaud the cleverness that went into thinking it up.
17. The Guild 2: Renaissance
Released: Oct. 19
Pffft. More like “The Guild 2: Picture I Took at a Renaissance Faire,” amirite?
Above: This man does not think you know enough things about the Renaissance
18. Sled Shred featuring the Jamaican Bobsled Team
Released: Oct. 12
We just have one question for the Jamaican Bobsled Team: since when do you all look like Rayman?
Above: Or is that Raymon?
19. Hollywood Squares
Released: Oct. 5
Thrilled as we are to see Arrested Development’s Jeffrey Tambor on the cover of a game, we’re just not sure if he can compete with the raw, smoldering presence of Martin Mull and Brad Garrett. Or the sallow-faced creature pretending to look like Kathy Griffin.
20. IGT Slots: Wolf Run
Released: Aug. 24
It’s an ugly t-shirt! That became an internet meme! That became a slot machine! That became a videogame! That doesn’t pay out any money!
Above: ALL IS NOW ONE