The Worst Games Ever Released For Xbox One, According To Metacritic
The Xbox One is about to sail off into the sunset, as both the Xbox Series S and Series X are launching in just a handful of weeks. And the XBO's been a firm friend, since its launch in 2013. Its backwards compatibility has been amazing, obviously, giving us the chance to revisit so many classics from the 360 era and the OG Xbox library. But Microsoft's console has also been home to a fair few (outgoing) current-gen bangers.
It's not had as many essential exclusives as have graced the PlayStation 4, arguably, but it takes a strong opinion indeed to not find something to love in the likes of Sea of Thieves, Forza Horizon 4, Gears 5, Cuphead, Ori and the Blind Forest, Halo: The Master Chief Collection and Sunset Overdrive. And yes, you can argue that not all Xbox One exclusives have remained exclusive - but isn't that what PlayStation is doing now, too? Moving its IPs over to other platforms? It is. So like, cool?
But we're not here, here, to look at the best that the Xbox One had to offer. Much like our countdown of the PlayStation 4's greatest stinkers, below you'll find a list of the worst trainwrecks to have appeared on the console. The ratings - and therefore the ranking - is based on the games' Metascores, at Metacritic, an online aggregator of journalist-penned reviews from around the world. These are the average scores these awful games achieved - and they are, truly, terrible. I feel bad for you, even reading about them. But let's go.
Bullet hell, with the emphasis on hell. This breed of frenetic shooter is often a lot of fun for the hardcore crowd, but Project Root manages to make one of gaming's most-demanding genres exceptionally boring. And for its crimes it should truly be sent straight down below to the hottest and most fiery of places, forevermore.
NBA Live 2014
EA Sports sure missed the mark with this one. Stuttering gameplay, substandard visuals, appalling online play at launch, and an overall experience that's less basketball and more no-fun-at-all, this one's not even worth a place on the sub's bench.
7 Days To Die
A survival game where the biggest challenge is tolerating all of its shortcomings, rather than any hardships posed by the gameplay itself, 7 Days To Die's port from PC to console resulted in a dreadful end product that probably shouldn't have been sold as the end product when it was. It has zombies, which are a nuisance, but they're not even half as annoying as the effort it takes just to manage your stamina bar. A bland open world doesn't exactly help this game's appeal, either.
While there's obvious ambition on show in this game's psychological narrative, the execution is hopelessly flawed - an impression illustrated in how little value is placed upon the game's supporting characters. It turns its protagonist's very sanity into a kind of cool-down superpower, which never truly makes sense; and its array of puzzles aren't all that taxing. Gunplay is stiff and its stealth sections are rife with insta-fail potential - and fail them once or twice and it's unlikely you'll bother going back for this one.
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Is it just me, or do horror games so easily find their way to 'worst' lists? Agony is, uh, agony, basically. It's set in Hell, and that's where every copy of this disaster deserves to be, frankly. It presents shock value to the fore and forgets to make the game part of the proposal any fun at all, with atrocious AI and a host of technical problems at launch. Leave it to the devils.
Clearly inspired by Gears of War but only capable of delivering a fraction of the action that Microsoft's series achieves, Gene Rain wastes a promising sci-fi premise on rote gunplay and dull visuals, accompanied by z-tier voice acting and a script directly from the back of the soggiest beermat. At least it's short, with its solo campaign clocking in at under four hours to beat.
Giana Sisters: Dream Runners
Weird one, this. The proposal of a Micro Machines-style racer where you have to get ahead of the opposition enough, pushing them to the very edge of the screen, to score a point is good - it worked back when, it can work right now. And mixing that with platforming, and a side-scrolling perspective? Could work, it really could. Spoiler: it does not. Giana Sisters: Dream Runners is let down by level design that doesn't feel intuitive enough to lend itself to speed, and the general clutter and contrasting colours of the environments can make it hard to track your runner. Worth five minutes of same-sofa multiplayer action, if you find it for free somehow; but otherwise, steer clear of this decent idea gone wildly awry.
Ghostbusters is the only title to appear on both the Xbox One's worst games list, and that of the PlayStation 4. And the reason why is pretty obvious: it's a terrible game that was released for both consoles. I've not got any more to tell you about this that I didn't already offer in the PS4 list. It's a cheap cash-in made to coincide with the 2016 movie - but one that has no connection to that film, to the ones before it, or anything good about the Ghostbusters franchise. Bin it.
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I don't. Get it. At all. Watch the trailer and write your own summary, cos I am out.
The Absolute Worst:
I said, I'm out. But, fine. Fighter Within was a launch game for the Xbox One, and made use of its Kinect peripheral, because something had to. It's a fighting game - the clue being right there, in the title. A bad fighting game. Its main problem being that it just doesn't work. The Kinect can't read what you, the player, is doing well enough for those actions to accurately be recreated on screen. And that's the one thing it needed to do. Still, all that waving your arms around probably burns off some calories, useful given the amount of comfort eating you'd do if this was the only game you had when you got your Xbox One.
Featured Image Credit: The Fun Pimps, Madmind Studio, Ubisoft, Microsoft