“Flop” is a video game you wait for a lot of time – months, years – and, when finally releasing, it reveals to be really distant from the quality you wanted it to have at first. This year we have witnessed many games that have proved to be not enough when it came to facing people’s expectations. Although 2015 has not reached its end yet, we’re almost there and only a couple triple-A titles are still to come (Just Cause 3, Rainbow Six Siege): that’s why we think the time is good for us to tell you which is our opinion in terms of “flops”. Take a look at our most important 2015 flops list, then, and let us have your comments in the dedicated section below.
Listen, the game has really improved in comparison with 2014 iteration and we are starting to hope it can become a serious competitor for FIFA next year. Anyway, there’s one thing Konami has not managed to improve, and it’s updating its database. Summer transfers have been implemented only in November and they have been split among online and offline modes, with the latter not worked on properly yet. It is unacceptable for such a big game and for a game of the sports genre, where people need to have constantly up-to-date contents to ultimately feel engaged with the stuff they’re playing.
HALO 5: GUARDIANS
As with PES 2016, we don’t think Halo 5: Guardians is a total flop. By the way, if you have played it, you know the PvE contents – the story mode, to tell it in old-fashioned terms – have not been up to people’s expectations and pretty distant from the quality/quantity delivered in multiplayer. More in the detail, Microsoft marketing has focused its pre-release campaign on the “hunt”, on the confrontation between historical series’ protagonist Master Chief and the new guy Jameson Locke. This is something that never happens in the game and, apart from just two scenes where you have them face to face, they don’t even talk one to another. The campaign is also lacking the previous Halo games’ epicness and is not very interesting at all until the last few chapters.
ROCK BAND 4
We have enjoyed the game and think it is also pretty good, but after playing Guitar Hero Live we have discovered Rock Band 4 is just old and can’t work in 2015. The game has no innovations apart from a long-term inconsistent freestyle mode, while its competitor. Well, Guitar Hero Live has a new guitar and control scheme, and Guitar Hero TV is a new and inexpensive way of delivering additional contents to the players. The FMV videos also represent a fresh take on the standard campaign mode.
AFRO SAMURAI 2
Fans of manga and anime have been really saddened to see Afro Samurai 2 is not only up to their expectations, but it’s even worse than the first Afro Samurai game published by Bandai Namco. You may have also read that this episodic game has been so bad received by users and press that its developer decided to cancel the second “Volume”, pull it off from Steam and start with the refunds. It’s very sad to read and write such things, but in some circumstances it would be really better for people not to launch incomplete or not polish enough titles on the market. At least, there’s the good news about the developer admitting their game is insanely bad and doesn’t deserve people’s money.
With F1 2015, Formula 1 has debuted on current gen consoles and Codemasters has not disappointed in terms of graphics. The game looks really good and we have nothing to say about the visual aspects, also because we don’t love to go into deep tech analysis. What’s really disappointing is the game has few modes to play and the few included in it don’t work like you should. For example, the career mode doesn’t include any managerial component, which means you can’t even change your team at the end of the season. It’s just a series of seasons put in a row without anything for you to improve in your virtual career.
ALONE IN THE DARK ILLUMINATION
Alone in the Dark has been rebooted again and, in case you missed it, the first game that has resulted from this new deal is very unrespectful of the series’ history. Pure FPS has not managed to provide at the very least a good game with Illumination, and here’s why. Alone in the Dark Illumination is a co-op first person shooter based on the likes of Left 4 Dead, but it’s very distant from the qualities of Valve’s zombie series. AI is poor and design is terrifically bad as well. The only thing you would say is good enough to be in a 2015 game is the technical component – graphics are pretty good -, although monsters’ design is so cheap you won’t probably notice it.
BATMAN: ARKHAM KNIGHT
Rocksteady has done a great job in writing Batman: Arkham Knight’s story and the game is very enjoyable on PS4 and Xbox One. The PC version, as you might recall, has been far from playable and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment even had to remove from sale on Steam. We played the PC version and managed to complete the game on it, but it’s true it was really disappointing to see it run so poorly – with the graphics quality of the consoles’ editions – although we had a top €2,000+ rig. The game has been re-published so far, with WBIE removing or editing negative comments preceding the second release, and some promises ultimately not maintained just like the SLI support.
THE ORDER: 1886
One of the first PlayStation 4 exclusive games, The Order: 1886 has been sold at full price while lasting about 5-6 hours. Moreover, Ready at Dawn title has been thought about and discussed until a few days before the official release as it was a Gears of War killer – which means, a game totally part of the third person shooter genre. People who have played it now know that The Order: 1886 is nothing like that, but it’s a game that tries to tell a movie-like story set in a Victorian and successful location such as London. So, it is not a bad game in its entirety but surely something that required to be explained better, and first, to gamers… or at least sold at a budget price from the beginning.
Left 4 Dead creators have returned back in the action with Evolve, a first-person co-op shooter based on very original premises but ultimately the victim of its own boldness. After the alpha and beta stages had a lot of technical issues, the game finally reached the marketing at the beginning of 2015 but encountered an even bigger problem: servers’ population. Now you can buy it for a few bucks but even today it’s not worth the money you should invest for it, simply because there aren’t enough gamers around on all the platforms it has been launched for. Moreover, Turtle Rock Studios and 2K Games have delivered a very controversial additional content policy, meaning that DLCs cost more than the core game itself.