The worst box art of 2011

35 of the year's ugliest attempts at game packaging

30. Farm 2

Released: Oct. 7

Hey, guess what? These animals just got done talking to the ones on Family Farm, and they can't wait to see what you'll do next!

They can't wait to see what... horrible... thing you'll do next. What awful, blood-curdling crime against God you will commit. They know the darkness that lurks in your heart, and yet they sit, wide-eyed, in eager anticipation.

You'd better not disappoint them.

31. Go Vacation

Released: Oct. 11

How do you criticize the incomprehensible? How to tear apart an image that pulls the eye in all directions at once? Not only is this busy, but it packs in a lot of different concepts, and we're not just talking about all the activities on display. There's also the red lines to consider, which seem to suggest an Indiana Jones-style travel route, as well as the big, blurry continent and which of the many, many characters we're supposed to focus on. We guess that means there's a lot to do in here, but it all adds up to an image that's crammed full of more useless shit than the inside of a lint trap

32. Redrum

Released: March 18

When we first saw this, we just sort of assumed it was an imitation of Alice: Madness Returns, but the more we look at it, the more uneasy we become. The girl's fairy wings and vapid, soft-focus expression are at sharp odds with the title, and the magnification of the... (reader? Tea-drinker? Ghost? Ghost drinking tea while reading a book in a deliberate waste of the viewer's time?) on her shoulder doesn't help us make better sense of it.

Also, this is starting to hurt your eyes. Trust us, it is. Let's move on.

33. Woodcutter Simulator 2011

Released: Oct. 28

The normal M.O. for these “[Noun] Simulator” games seems to be to just slap a stock photo (or, worse, a crude render) of whatever they’re simulating on the cover and call it a day. A boring, depressing day. For Woodcutter Simulator 2011, however, they decided to do something fresh and bold. They wouldn’t just use a boring photo of a tree harvester – they’d paste a boring photo of a schlubby dude on top of it! GENIUS.

34. Phil Taylor's Power Play Darts

Released: Dec. 2

If you learn anything from this box, it's that Phil Taylor is the single most badass human being on the planet. Look at that face. Even he is terrified by his pure, raging machismo. When Phil Taylor walks down the sidewalk, his feet crack the cement. Phil Taylor does not so much "play darts" as he projects bolts of pure will through the medium of his fists, crushing the dartboard with the force of a black hole and eliciting gasps from the delighted pub crowd around him. Then Phil Taylor walks through a seedy neighborhood and beats the shit out of hundreds of identical thugs while eating entire roast chickens out of oil drums, which Phil Taylor breaks open with his bare hands.

Phil Taylor won the Kumite. Phil Taylor is violence incarnate, and also probably your real dad. Phil Taylor was made using the genetic material of history's greatest dictators. Phil Taylor holds the world high score in Donkey Kong. Phil Taylor will conquer all and usher in a reign of blood and fire. Phil Taylor is the only human being ever to kidney-punch God. Phil Taylor is going Super Saiyan right now. Phil Taylor's name will be the last thing you ever hear, chanted in unison by armies of savage men as they grind the bones of all you knew into powder beneath their iron boots. Phil Taylor. Phil Taylor. PHIL TAYLOR.

Or, you know, maybe this box just built up our expectations too high.

35. Paws & Claws Marine Rescue

Released: Jan. 25

Look at these animals. These animals ain't got shit on Phil Taylor.


Dancing Craze Bonus Edition

Released: Nov. 18, 2010

This one actually came out last year, but somehow, we missed it among the piles of other awful boxes we made fun of. Probably because it's fairly aesthetically sound, with (somewhat) appealing character art and… hang on, what’s that?

Wait, wait, there it is…


The worst box art of 2010
A look back at the 40 games that fuglied up store shelves the most last year

The worst box art of 2009
25 of last year's ugliest attempts at game packaging

The Worst Box Art of 2008
Cringe at 20 of the best examples of awful packaging


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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