5 of the Most Hated Video Games of All Time

two people playing video games

Gaming on Xbox | Source: Thinkstock

If you’ve ever wondered about which video games you should hate, there are plenty to look at. We’ve got the worst fighting games ever. The worst shooters here. The most horrible horror games here. And the worst games of 2015 here. But what if you want to go deeper? Sure all those of section dive into the garbage bin to suss out the worst of the worst. But maybe they’re too narrow in focus. Maybe what you want is the lowest of the lowest of the low. You want to know which games are so bad they can’t get an ounce of love, let alone a gram of it. You want the games almost as bad as the hand models’ controller grip in the picture above.

OK! Let’s forget about genre boundaries. Let’s put on rubber gloves and shove our hands deep down into the filth and see what comes out. Here we’ll look at the truly worst, most hated games of all time. These may not have hate in the greatest quantity, but they will have it in the greatest quality. We’ve taken every game on Metacritic with a Metascore below 30, and then we’ve combined that with the User Score to generate a composite, ensuring the games included here are near-unanimously despised. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the muck.

5. Motorbike (PlayStation 3)

If you’re lucky, you didn’t spend $14.99 on this game. If you’re lucky, you’ve never even played this game. On top of a magical motorcycle that can drive in reverse, the undazzlingly named Motorbike video game was chock full of bad physics, bad levels, and bugs that would see the ground break and suck your rider half-way down. If anyone wanted to, they could suffer through this game with a friend in the 2-player mode, but then they’ll be confronted by a new problem: a crazy camera that splits, unsplits, and completely loses track of the players on occasion. What makes matters even worse is that there are tons of free online video games that offer pretty much the same gameplay without all the problems. Check out these motocross games or — one of my personal favorites — BMX Highlands for a much more bearable bike experience.

4. NBA Unrivaled (PlayStation 3)

NBA Unrivaled was available and hated on both the Xbox 360 and PS3, but did worse on the latter console (an interesting trend, that held true for most of the cross-console games on this list). The PS3 version received a painfully low 0.6 User Score, a major factor in it descending the ranks far enough to make it here and earn it a spot below Motorbike (We give preference to User Scores when breaking ties.). NBA Unrivaled looks basically like an arcade basketball game made for the original PlayStation but with some higher quality textures. All the players look stiff and move around like they’re scurrying. The AI is daft. And all of the NBA stars bear no resemblance to their real-world counterparts. Simply put, nothing feels real in this game. And it wanted people to pay $15? Yikes.

If you want a better sports game, just play literally ANY other sports game. NBA Unrivaled is the fourth worst game of all time, but the No. 1 worst sports game ever made. It deserves no love.

3. Fast & Furious: Showdown (PlayStation 3)

“Video games based on movies are never good” may be a shaky truism, but there’s no fallacy in applying that truism to Fast & Furious: Showdown. The game was available on PC, Xbox 360, and PS3, and did poorly on each. It felt like a cheap racer with some quirks thrown in, like dragging a physics-less bank vault behind your car. Some moments made it seem like a Burnout ripoff, unfortunately not to the games benefit. Awful cut-scenes, bad graphics, bugs, and long load times marred this already unimpressive game. What’s worse, there isn’t even much for fans of the Fast & Furious movie franchise. It has none of the films’ actors offering voice-overs, and doesn’t even have Vin Diesel’s likeness. To put the icing on the cake, it went for $40 and had just 30 missions that ranged from short to incredibly short.

If you want to have more fun in the Fast & Furious world, get yourself a steering wheel and pretend you’re driving while you watch the movies. That’s almost guaranteed to be a better experience.

2. Family Party: 30 Great Games Obstacle Arcade (Wii U)

If you want to play a video game with your family or several friends and want to suffer together, look no further than Family Party: 30 Great Games Obstacle Arcade. The title alone is enough to cause some minor suffering. The graphics are bad. The games are not “Great” as the title implies. The mini-games are often too long, lasting well past the instant their charm wears off (which is right away). To make the game length even worse, if you beat a computer player in a race, they will potentially take a really long time to finish, and you’ll get to sit and wait. With a $29.99 price tag, Family Party was asking for $1 per mini-game. By that valuation, Mario Party 10 should have been $75, and next to Family Party, it would have been well worth the money.

1. Ride to Hell: Retribution (PS3)

This trailer contains graphic content

This trailer contains graphic content

Ding, ding, ding! We have ourselves a winner (read: loser). Ride to Hell: Retribution takes the cake. Another cross-platform game, Ride to Hell was available on PC, Xbox 360, and PS3. If we saw fit to include the PC version separately, it would have ranked No. 4 on this list with a composite score of 14.5 (but User Score a big higher than that of Fast & Furious). The Xbox 360 version was pretty close to the danger zone as well. No matter the platform, hate for this game has just been lurking around the corner. Just do a Google search for this game and see how many people will say “worst game ever.” It will be many people, because it is the worst.

OK, so a motorcycle-riding, rampaging Vietnam vet hellbent on revenge doesn’t sound so bad. But it gets bad when the game feels unfinished, and when the finished parts are low-quality. Once you get past the introduction montage which explains nothing, you get into a game with a lame story crammed with weak dialogue performed by voice actors who do it no favor.

To save all of us some time, I’ll just list the rest of the things wrong with this game in short form: bad audio, missing audio, bad volume mixing, bad combat, bad driving mechanics, objectification, awful sex, awful understanding of sexuality, wonky cameras, dumb AI, and randomly exploding motorcycles. That’s not even an exhaustive list. If you want to have a good laugh, you can try this game out, but laughs aren’t guaranteed. Loathing is pretty much guaranteed, though.

Honorable mention:

OK, so we’ve listed the 5 games that are assuredly the most despised when it comes to the depths and unanimity of loathing toward them, but we have to at least give honorable mention to Call of Duty and Battlefield. Why? Because the fan bases are so large and so devoted that the amount of hate going back and forth between the two camps is undoubtedly massive. Even though both are beloved franchises, they get loads of hate showered upon them.

Honorable mention 2:

It seems worth mentioning Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing for PC, which has the lowest Metacritic score of any game ever made: 8. You’d think that’s enough for a spot on this list, but users gave it a surprisingly high 3.8 User Score. If you’re wondering how it got such a high score, the answer is probably this: sarcasm. If you take a look at the user reviews, you’ll notice ratings at either end of the spectrum, and not much between. Just read them for yourself and enjoy. It’s hard to be sure whether this game would have placed on this list in the absence of sarcastic user ratings, because some people seem to have really enjoyed this game for what a broken mess it is — not the case for Ride to Hell.

Tweet me if you’ve played any of these games. I want to hear your war stories.