For every video game masterpiece, you can find hundreds — maybe even thousands — of bad games. But the games on this list go beyond bad and beyond bad taste. They’re tasteless, offensive, obnoxious, and/or purposely provocative. They’re games that are wrong on so many levels.
A word of warning: much of this material is not safe for work. Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s dive in, shall we?
[Note: As these games can be offensive, the videos herein may naturally be offensive or explicit.]
By its very nature, virtual reality is the most immersive form of gaming yet. So when imagining scenarios players might want to experience in VR, what comes to mind? How about working in One World Trade Center on the morning of September 11, 2001? Yeah, probably not. But that’s exactly the scene the developers of 8:46 want you to experience.
You’re an office worker in one of the twin towers, going about your day when the first plane hits. Now you have to try to escape (well, kind of). The atmosphere is fraught with tension: You hear people calling loved ones and watch as a man leaps from a window. The graphics are rudimentary and the acting isn’t great, but the game is still weirdly effective, thanks to the VR immersion.
If you’re willing to put yourself through the experience and you have an Oculus Rift DK2, you can download the game here.
If any game can be considered a provocation, Hatred is it. You play as a goth maniac who’s fed up with the world in the most comically overstated way possible. Here’s part of the antihero’s opening speech: “I just fucking hate the world, and these human worms feasting on its carcass. My whole life is just cold, bitter hatred, and I always wanted to die violently… It’s time to kill, and it’s time to die.”
He gears up and leaves the house, ready to shoot, stab, or toss a live grenade at anyone he comes across. That’s the premise of the game, but it gets tougher when the cops show up to stop your rampage. To heal yourself, you need to perform brutal executions.
Hatred probably won’t appeal to you if you’re a reasonable person and/or over the age of 15, but the developers tried their hardest to provoke outrage — and it worked.
3. Postal 2
One of the spiritual predecessors of Hatred is 1997’s Postal, a game that covers similar territory: kill enough people to proceed to the next level. It was controversial when it came out, but its 2009 sequel was way, way worse. This first-person kill-fest lets you knock people’s heads off, urinate on corpses, use cats as gun silencers, and yell racist remarks as you kill groups of people.
Another repercussion of the Postal series was that the notorious filmmaker Uwe Boll bought the rights to the game and made an abysmal movie based on it. Perhaps that’s the most tasteless part of all.
4. Super Columbine Massacre RPG
Another offensive game based on a real-life tragedy is Super Columbine Massacre RPG. This retro-style game puts you in the shoes of the pair of school shooters as you do what many of the games on this list have you do: kill innocent people.
The game was supposed to be an artistic statement, showing both flashbacks to the lives of the two killers and a post-suicide journey into hell. The game even features text from the killers’ actual journal entries. Despite the artistic intentions, most people wrote SCMRPG off as a tasteless, offensive game with no real merit.
Well then. Apparently women being groped by strangers is a prevalent problem in Japan, so Illusion Software went and made what it calls an “erotic game” based on the idea. RapeLay is all about stalking unsuspecting women on trains, then stripping, fondling, and forcing yourself on them until you, ahem… you get the idea.
Once you do your thing on the initial three victims (a mother and two daughters), new modes open up that let you do even worse things to them. Yuck.