The 15 Worst Reviewed Games of 2019
2019 has graced us with some great games, from the fantastic Resident Evil 2 remake earlier this year to some surprise hits in Disco Elysium and The Outer Worlds. But, for every good game, there’s a dozen more that don’t quite stack up. That’s right, we’re talking about the worst reviewed games of 2019.
Click through the gallery below, or scroll down further to see the full list of games, according to Metacritic scores.
15 Worst Reviewed Games of 2019
15. Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry
Metacritic Score: 50
Love them or hate them, the Leisure Suit Larry games have been around for more than 30 years, offering players a “mature” point-and-click adventure that relies heavily on sexual jokes and other such content. Larry Laffer’s latest outing is no different, although many critics knocked it for its barebones story, lack of any meaningful puzzles, and limp sexual jokes that wouldn’t appeal to even the most immature of us. Sorry, Larry. Better luck next time.
14. Wolfenstein: Cyberpilot
Metacritic Score: 50
The Wolfenstein series has always been a power fantasy renowned for its over-the-top stories about taking down Nazis. The series’ first entry into VR, unfortunately, doesn’t tap into any of the things that make the regular games sing. Much of the criticism directed at it focuses on its incredibly short story, underwhelming combat, and general lack of content.
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Cyberpilot feels more like a tech demo for PSVR: one that shows off what the hardware can do, but ultimately doesn’t add much beyond that.
13. Decay of Logos
Metacritic Score: 49
Drawing inspiration from games like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Dark Souls, Decay of Logos sounds like a great game on paper. However, many critics knocked it for its plethora of performance issues as well as an inconsistent progression system that makes playing the game more of a chore than an adventure.
In our review we said, “The colorful, Breath of the Wild-esque art style shows off some pretty stellar areas that beg to be explored, though doing so almost invariably ends in touring samey dungeons, filled with repetitive monsters and puzzles that you quickly become all too familiar with.”
We’d rather just wait for Breath of the Wild 2, instead.
Metacritic Score: 49
Taking a page out of Journey’s book, Vane offers up a desolate desert experience that doesn’t have the same allure as the game it was inspired by. Critics of Vane noted a lack of direction and sparse story make adventuring across its glittering sands feel empty and uninspired. Vane’s only saving grace is that it’s short enough to play through in one sitting, if you’re so inclined.
11. Devil’s Hunt
Metacritic Score: 48
Devil’s Hunt is a third-person action-adventure game that, aesthetically, doesn’t look bad at first glance. But its good looks aside, everything else about it according to general critical consensus is pretty lackluster. Its protagonist, Desmond, has been called generic, as has the story – adding up to an experience that can be skipped without any worry.
10. Monster Jam Steel Titans
Metacritic Score: 47
For those who have attended a Monster Jam event, you’ve undoubtedly felt the excitement and high energy that fills those arenas. Unfortunately, that same feeling of excitement is lost in Monster Jam Steel Titans. It features a number of different modes including open-world exploration, racing, demolition, and more, but most say that none of them quite stick the landing, instead ending up underwhelming in every way.
Screens – Monster Jam Steel Titans
The only silver lining for it is that many critics claim it is the best, most-realized iteration of the over-the-top monster truck action in the series to date, even with its flaws.
9. Generation Zero
Metacritic Score: 45
Avalanche Studios, most known for its work developing the Just Cause series, 2015’s Mad Max, and most recently, Rage 2, have generally created stellar open-world experiences. Instead of flashy weapons and a plethora of vehicles to control in a giant open-world sandbox, Generation Zero, drops players in a desolate world devoid of life populated primarily by giant human-killing robots. While this may seem like an interesting premise to some, critics note that the open-world survival action fails to excite with an uninteresting story and repetitive combat loop. Furthermore, the lack of polish makes Generation Zero feel broken and unfinished.
Metacritic Score: 44
Survival-horror continues to be a genre that is fairly niche. That being said, Submersed doesn’t do anything to push it forward in any meaningful way. Playing on a general fear of sharks, its story unfolds beneath the surface of the ocean, but leaves a lot to be desired. Critics have noted its short, underdeveloped narrative and frustratingly difficult enemies as some of the biggest issues. Submersed is also full of bugs that keep it from reaching its full potential as a standout of its genre.
7. FIFA 20 Legacy Edition (Nintendo Switch)
Metacritic Score: 43
If you’ve already purchased FIFA 19 for Nintendo Switch and are looking for any of the new features released in other versions of FIFA 20, including the new Volta mode, then FIFA 20 Legacy Edition is a hard pass. EA effectively updated the rosters and shipped FIFA 19 again.
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It’s frustrating to see the lack of support EA has for Nintendo Switch, but FIFA 20 Legacy Edition would’ve been better off as DLC.
Metacritic Score: 42
WWE 2K20 is the first game in the 20-year-long series not developed by Yuke’s, instead passing the torch to Visual Concepts, who have supported development on the series since 2014. But, much of what made WWE 2K19 a great game was lost in translation, as 2K20 has been riddled with (hilarious) bugs from the jump, even prompting for a #FixWWE2K20 campaign to trend on Twitter.
Even more, many features were outright removed that were available in 2K19, including many online match modes and custom arenas. With all of this added up, it feels like WWE 2K20 got hit with a Stone Cold Stunner.
Metacritic Score: 41
Dollhouse is a first-person adventure game captured through the eyes of the young detective, Marie, who must piece together her past by replaying her memories. However, critics have noted that the procedurally generated levels feel too similar to one another, and gameplay is too repetitive. Ultimately, Dollhouse is riddled with bugs – including game-breaking bugs – which makes this horror game a terrifying experience to play through for all the wrong reasons.
4. Contra: Rogue Corps
Metacritic Score: 40
Known for its chaotic run-and-gun gameplay, Contra has been a staple series dating back to the arcades of the late-80’s before making its way to the NES in 1988. The latest entry in the more than 30-year-old franchise doesn’t hold a candle to its predecessors, though. Adapting what was traditionally a 2D side-scrolling shoot ‘em up to a modern twin stick shooter ends up feeling uninspired and generic, and distinctly not Contra.
Performance issues, muddy graphics, and generally uninteresting gameplay plagues Contra: Rogue Corps throughout according to many critics. If you’re looking for that sweet, sweet classic action, may we recommend the Contra Anniversary Collection instead?
3. Blades of Time
Metacritic Score: 38
Blades of Time originally launched on PC, PS3, and Xbox 360 before making its way onto the Nintendo Switch earlier this year. While the game had mixed reactions when it initially launched, the Nintendo Switch version shows it hasn’t aged well. While, visually, Blades of Time looks great on Switch – especially in handheld mode – the hack-and-slash gameplay feels dated alongside other great games in the genre like Astral Chain or the Bayonetta series. Hell, even the older Devil May Cry games that were recently ported have smoother combat. Unfortunately, Blades of Time is a game better left to time itself.
2. Left Alive
Metacritic Score: 37
Another game that feels extremely dated in 2019, Left Alive takes place in the same universe as Square Enix’s classic Front Mission games, which date back to the SNES.
What should’ve been another stellar action that blends stealth elements with mechs, drawing obvious comparisons to the Metal Gear Solid series, turned out to be a frustrating mess of difficult enemy A.I., an encumbering weight system to manage, and poor level design that encourages you to roll everywhere just to make progress, as many critics have pointed out. Not to mention bad voice acting, audio bugs, and meaningless decision-making are just the icing on top of this unfinished cake.
1. Eternity: The Last Unicorn
Metacritic Score: 36
Eternity attempts to replicate the older, fixed-camera style action games from the ‘90s and early ‘00s era such as Onimusha and Resident Evil, but lacks any of the substance that made those games so great. Many critics agree that the combat has been distilled down to mashing a single button, as most enemies lack any type of situational awareness. Many bosses, on the other hand, are almost impossible to take down, requiring an endless supply of healing items or cheap techniques to remain alive.
The imbalance with enemy design forces unnecessary grinding if the player wishes to have even a remote chance of progressing through the game. Sadly, the game is just simply not fun to even warrant spending the additional time leveling up your character and gear. The worst enemy in the game has to be the fixed-camera angle, though, which you’re constantly battling as it gets stuck frequently, causing many fights to become more difficult than they already are to begin. There’s not much to like with this Norse-inspired tale, especially with games like God of War available today.
If you need to cleanse your palate after reading about some of these games, check out some of the best video games instead on our Top 100 Games of All Time List. Additionally, if you’re looking for specific platforms we’ve also got the Best Nintendo Switch Games, the Best PS4 Games, the Best Xbox One Games, and Best PC Games.
Matthew Adler is a Features and News writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @matthewadler or watch him on Twitch.