The MEDIOCRE Awards 2016

The best of the best have been celebrated, the worst of the worst received their punishment, and all that’s left is the gulf of creativity in the middle. The pedestrian. The everyday. The completely unimportant.

Such cardboard pointlessness deserves attention too!

Yes, it’s time for the second annual MEDIOCRE Awards, as we pay homage not to the spectacular, but to the truly unremarkable. These were the games of 2016 that were exemplary only in their lack of excellence. Once again we “celebrate” those games that failed to wow and succeeded in being disappointments and wastes of time.

MEDIOCRE!

No Man’s Sky
(Check out the review!)

One of 2016’s most hyped games also turned out to be one of the least interesting. Hello Games’ No Man’s Sky was undoubtedly controversial – controversial enough that many were upset to see it missing from my rundown of the year’s worst games – but the product itself is the embodiment of lackluster.

Little more than a threadbare survival game with stereotypical crafting elements, No Man’s Sky is a tedious waste of time, relying on repetitive tasks, recycled content, and a building-block approach to procedural generation that saw little variance in “story” encounters and regular repeats of animal parts and environmental details.

No Man’s Sky is so dull that it’s actually at its most fun when you’re doing nothing – there’s at least a calming, laid back experience to be had in simply cruising the skies of yet another Bruiser Bar-colored planet. The grinding drudgery of resource collection and survival meter management is just thoroughly miserable.

If we ignore all of Hello Games’ promises (and they did promise a load of bullshit, regardless of what apologists claim), we’re still left with a game that has little going for it. So many procedurally generated planets, such a vast universe, and so little to do in it. There’s no point offering a massive game world when the best it has to offer is the occasional squirrel dinosaur that you can’t even ride.

It’s a prime example of how overvalued “content” is in the game industry – nebulous, monotonous content that has no value when it comes without context, variety, or meaning. So many “open world” games are little more than gigantic unassuming maps with recycled objectives scattered around them, just so the publishers can tell you how “big” their game is.

No Man’s Sky is the logical extreme of this prevailing industry attitude. It’s so very big… and so very bloody empty.

Mirror’s Edge Catalyst
(Check out the review!)

It’s hard not to believe Mirror’s Edge Catalyst – an answer to intense fan demand – was developed under duress. So much about it seems to be wearily checking boxes rather than striving to provide a memorable experience. As it dawdles sluggishly from one tired plot point to the next, this sequel to a beloved cult classic was just another open world snore-fest.

Combat is the same old shit over and over again, especially once you access the “switch place” move that lets Faith get behind the identical, unvaried enemies and hit them in the back. It’s such an effective trick that it’s the only one that matters. Despite the game itself wanting players to perform all sorts of aggressive parkour attacks, the environments are poorly designed for any walljumping action so fighting boils down to a few dull stock moves.

Despite the more open world, Catalyst‘s map is restrictive and choking, forcing players back and forth down the same old pathways and desperately trying to up its running time with the usual assortment of collectibles and repetitive side missions. It’s “Open World 101” in terms of game design, and the best that can be said of any of it is that DICE made an acceptable game.

Acceptable, and far from interesting.

Mirror’s Edge Catalyst is so creatively bankrupt that its final battle is against two stock enemies that have been encountered loads of times before them. The big twist is that there’s two of them.

Fuck this game.

Layers of Fear
(Check out the review!)

I’m perpetually puzzled as to how Layers of Fear got both the publisher backing and illusion of credibility it received this year. An unassuming walking simulator with horror dressing, Bloober Team’s tale of a mad artist falls down the Horror Trope Tree and smacks its head against every branch on the descent.

Remember that time you walked forever through some corridors but it was a trick because the moment you turned around the exit was behind you? Remember that scary ghost lady with the twitchy head? Remember doors slamming shut and then jostling violently because OH MY GOD SOMETHING’S TRYING TO GET IN!? Remember creepy dolls? Remember wheelchairs? Remember how scary wheeeeeelchaaaaairs are in games?

WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEELCHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAIRS!?!?!?

This is basically Layers of Fear‘s primary trick – reminding you just how trite horror games have become due to them all repeating the same obnoxious cliches.

There’s a baseline quality to the overall production – it looks decent, has some nice sound effects, and generally controls well enough – but it never rises above that baseline. Most of the game is spent wandering around a glorified amusement park haunted house, looking at the stereotypically “spooky” things.

Sometimes there’ll be a rudimentary puzzle, but that’s about it. The fact you can’t get hurt by any of the game’s “threats” becomes apparent all too soon, and with that obvious note comes the vacuuming of all possible tension. Had there been some genuine risk to the player – or at least a convincing pretense of such – then some of this game’s tricks could have been effective. Instead, it’s toothless.

Layers of Fear could only be recommended to somebody who’s never played a horror game before and could therefore be convinced by its predictable tricks. Why would you do that, however, when you could simply recommend a better game?

No, this game is only truly worth playing in a world where no other horror experience exists at all.

Super Mario Run
(Check out the review!)

A half-baked runner game bolted onto a half-baked city builder, Super Mario Run could have been good if it focused on one thing. Instead, in typical Nintendo fashion, Mario’s big mobile showcase desperately attempted to be quirky and ended up lacking in every department.

It shouldn’t really be that hard to make a Mario runner, but that’s exactly Nintendo’s problem. The company can never do what’s expected and just has to add as many little twists and variances as it can. While that attitude can be noble, there’s such a thing as trying too hard, and a game that really should’ve just been “Super Mario Bros. with tapping” became an online-only game about playing recycled tracts of level over and over.

I hate writing about Super Mario Run. I hate writing about it because it’s an insipid product and the apathy it inspires in me is paradoxically aggressive.

What burns me up is how much I was actually looking forward to this one. I try not to get hyped for games because hype is a terrible thing, but I cannot overstate how much I think a Mario runner is a great idea. It really is!

It just couldn’t be allowed to stay a great idea. It had to be fucking quirky.

And that made it fucking dire.

The Tomorrow Children
(Check out the review!)

The Tomorrow Children has a lot of potential, but this satirical free-to-play game was too sterile, too robotic, too pointless to achieve much beyond making the player feel like they wasted time – and potentially money.

You’re a girl in a visually unappealing plain white world, building a “town” alongside other random players. The “town” is just a messy collection of buildings placed in the empty void by users with no mind for city planning. Gameplay mostly revolves around taking a slow-as-shit bus to various randomly generated islands and mining for resources using tools with stereotypical durability meters.

Take the bus to the island, gather stuff, take the bus back, drop stuff off, repeat. That’s most of the game. There’s some dreary combat and weird little dolls that turn into NPCs when you bring them home, but that’s about it. Most of the game is working to earn currency to buy better work gear. One of those games that exist only to perpetuate an uninspired economy.

When you “beat” the game – or rather, meet your current town’s goals – your reward is starting again in another town. The time until you meet your goals is dependent on how well the town’s doing when you get there, but the goal always leads to the same dire letdown.

A shameless waster of time, The Tomorrow Children loves making players wait around doing nothing. Wait for the bus! Wait in line to interact with an object! Wait for something fun to happen! Unless you adore gathering pointless shit for the sheer sake of gathering pointless shit, you’re going to find the F2P-by-numbers drudgery quite painful indeed.

About the only thing the game can be proud of is its player character design, but the beautifully creepy puppets primarily serve to highlight how lacking in artististry the rest of the world is.

The Tomorrow Children might not be the most boring free-to-play game I’ve suffered, but it’s up there.

The Technomancer
(Check out the review!)

More like The MEHchnomancer! Haha, I’m so funny.

The Technomancer is yet another attempted RPG from Spiders, the developer that always seems to be trying its best despite making mostly forgettable rubbish. I loved Of Orcs and Men, but the studio’s really struggled to put something together since, and The Technomancer is yet another piece of wet tissue paper.

Like the majority of Spiders’ library, The Technomancer hovers in the “explicitly not terrible” realm of videogames, resting on the fact it’s not the worst game ever made despite its relative lack of redeeming qualities. The Technomancer is explicitly not terrible. That’s really the best you can say about it.

Despite desperately wanting to be Mass Effect, this sad little RPG is such a small and constrained playpen. It pads itself out with mission after mission taking place in a handful of locations that demand excessive backtracking. Hours can be spent in the first city, but not because there’s much to explore – it’s just the poorly written quests keep taking place in said city’s pitiful assortment of alleys and caves.

There’s a surprising amount of detail in Technomancer‘s lore and backstory, leading one to believe this may once have been a much bigger project. Spiders was ambitious with this one, which serves to make the piddling end result all the more tragic.

Combat is an erratic mess, the camera is an active hindrance, and you can’t squeeze more than thirty frames-per-second out of the thing on PC.

Whether things got cut or it was simply deemed too much work to make Mass EffectThe Technomancer is a game that both tried really hard and doesn’t try at all. There are so many clues that effort and thought was present during development, yet somehow the release version treads water and plays for time to an extreme level.

And it’s just so… so very…

MEDIOCRE!

Amer1ka
Guest
Amer1ka
This is pretty close to the perfect list of “meh” games of the year. I think the TMNT game could have possibly made it. The game is just so meh and is a huge letdown by Platinum who had never fully let me down before (I even liked Korra). I guess it could also be thrown in the pile of worst games but I didn’t think it was that awful. It just didn’t give me what I was expecting with TMNT getting the Platinum action treatment. Then throw in that 30fps cap and no co-op. Ugh.
diamond
Guest
diamond

That game for me was the very definition of average.

Uzuki
Guest
Uzuki

Same here. The B team are pretty miss or hit, but they missed hard on TMNT. Like seriously, how could they mess up TMNT? That should have been right up their ally, especially afterror they did a good job with Transformers.

Jak
Guest
Jak

Maybe I’m greedy for more content but I expected far more mediocre games in Jim’s list.
On the other hand my heart is emotionally shrivelled and dried out like a forgotten raisin too miserable to be eaten, so most games seem mediocre to me.

diamond
Guest
diamond

I’m with Gavin in that I think gaming is now better then ever.

Jak
Guest
Jak

I’m with you and Gavin on that, though my tastes are getting more refined. Or to put it more bluntly, with the quantity of games around I’m just hard to please.

diamond
Guest
diamond

I have the opposite problem in that there’s so many games I want to play that it’s sometimes hard to choose.

Jak
Guest
Jak

Good for you, my Steam backlog/library is exploding, so many games that are meh and that I don’t want to play at the moment.

Xirbtt
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Xirbtt

You forgot Titanfall 2. ;D

diamond
Guest
diamond

and Battlefield 1, I don’t even need to have played that game to see how bland and uninspired it is, I watched an entire playthrough after watching TotalBiscuit’s very negative video on the game, just to see how much worse the campaign got, and it did not dissapoint. DICE really needs to get their shit together for the next BF game, they really need to do Bad Company 3 to get themselves out of the rut they’ve dug themselves into.

Tylericous
Guest
Tylericous

Most people would probably disagree with you though. It got fantastic reviews and many say that the campaign is actually good. I mention this because I think most would say DICE has got out of a rut rather then dug themselves into one.

diamond
Guest
diamond

Critics may have loved it, but a number of BF fans feel like the series went in the wrong direction, Yahtzee also hated it.

Fyou
Guest
Fyou

Jesus people sure seem to be desciples of TB and Yahtzee around here. Yahtzee is occasionally entertaining, but is far, far too cynical for me to get any value whatsoever out of his actual opinions. TB has too stupid of a name for me to literally have ever watched a single video of his. People spout these youtubers opinions out like it’s going to change the opinion of someone who doesn’t care enough to have found those videos themselves. It won’t. Ever. You might as well tell me your uncle’s opinion on things, it will carry the same weight.

diamond
Guest
diamond

That’s just Yahtzee’s shtick, and I can see why he’s cynical, Total Biscuit is a not a stupid name at all(John Bain got it from a Terry Pratchet novel) and you should be slapped silly for saying that.

Saying you won’t watch a video just because of someone’s name is the stupidest fucking thing i’ve ever heard anyone say, you are a complete fucking brain-dead moron who is a waste of life.

Nobody gives a shit about your pathetic garbage opinion, so you might as well stop wasting everyone else’s time with your asinine and inane garbage.

diamond
Guest
diamond

fucking idiot

diamond
Guest
diamond

Jesus you’re a fucking idiot, i’m not trying to change people’s opinions, i’m just saying I agree with TB’s and Yahtzee’s, if you actually bothered to read you’d know that, but you’re too fucking lazy so I guess that’s not surprising?

Drew C
Guest
Drew C

Tbh, if you go through this thread, you’ll properly find ever mention of TB and Yahtzee come from Diamond who’s seems to of latched onto an appeal to authority logical fallacy for this thread (I can count at least 55 comments spouting the exact same argument). There is a reason I and others have the dull bore blocked.

diamond
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diamond

Dosen’t feel like DICE got out of a rut at all, feels like they dove in head first.

Simon
Guest
Simon

Was certainly one of the best looking games of 2016.

Haven’t seen the TB review but not a fan of him anyway so probably won’t.

Jim >>>>>>>>>> TB

diamond
Guest
diamond

It was all style and no real substance.

What does that arrow thing mean? I always see people using it, but it never made any sense to me, I think both TB and Jim are good in different ways.

Charlie Koszulinski
Guest
Charlie Koszulinski

Those aren’t arrows. That’s a greater than/less than sign (I forgot the actual term for it). If the pointed end is facing TB, that means he’s lesser than Jim, if the open side is facing TB, that means he’s greater than Jim.

diamond
Guest
diamond

Ah so that’s what it means, still seems a bit weird to me, it’s like more a obtuse way of saying you like something better or less then something else, seems like it would make more sense to just say that instead of trying to look cool by using math symbols.

Ben Mitchell
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Ben Mitchell

But Math symbols >= Just saying it :3

Nitrium
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Nitrium

… and thus more efficient. It’s really similar to “afaik”, or “btw” etc. This > that.

Fyou
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Fyou

Greater or equal?

Simon
Guest
Simon

I assure you I wasn’t trying to look cool! I just work too much with numbers. I’m the one that usually has to ask what abbreviations mean. I had to look up SJW because of Jim. Now I know I find the term quite handy!

diamond
Guest
diamond

SJW is a very stupid term.

Simon
Guest
Simon

It’s the greater than symbol. So the more > symbols you put is the more the more you’re saying the former is greater than the latter. Same would apply to the less than symbol. Comes from mathematical notation where sometimes two are used to indicate “much greater/less than” and this is a hyperbolic extension of that.

Marcus Maphesto Wedin
Guest
Marcus Maphesto Wedin

Heresy!

Xirbtt
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Xirbtt

I think he hyped it too much. It’s boring slop.

MJC
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MJC

No he didn’t, it was in his Jimquisition Awards video. Didn’t win, but got an honorable mention. ;D

Xirbtt
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Xirbtt

But Titanfall 2 is so bad. D:

diamond
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diamond

I disagree on Catalyst, I think it’s a really solid game overall, it didn’t feel “creatively bankrupt” to me in the least, same with Technomancer.

Jack Trevor
Guest
Jack Trevor

Considering what I’ve seen, you’re in a pretty small minority.

I can at least see someone enjoying those games but there are better ones out there you could be playing.

diamond
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diamond

No, i’m not in a “small minority”, the game’s Metascore was far from horrible(72, not great but not terrible either) and plenty of fans of the previous game did enjoy this one.

So what if there are better games out there? You can make that argument for almost every game, that’s the most nonsensical and lazy argument i’ve ever heard against a game.

Jack Trevor
Guest
Jack Trevor

You’re still in a minority.

While I may be broad stroking here, but when I talk to people about what games were good games this year, those games don’t come up. Ever.

Plus you can’t hide “simple” and “straight-forward” with “lazy”. Plus I’m quite sure more people would agree with me then you if I cared enough to make a show. But those games are not worth it.

diamond
Guest
diamond
Why? Cause you say so? Why do you feel the need to say i’m “i’m in a minority” for liking a game you don’t like? Why the fuck do you even care? Do you just get off on trying to insult people for daring to like something you don’t like? I can’t think of any other explanation for why you seem to have such a hard on for my taste in games. So what if people you talk to don’t bring them up? That means less then nothing, if you hang out with the same group of people, it’s very… Read more »
09philj
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09philj
A good game need not push the envelope in every direction. It just has to be good in it’s own niche, or provide some small things to make it a little more special. Persona 4 Golden is a better JRPG than Bravely Second, but I’m happy to own them both because they each bring their own flair to the genre that I can’t get elsewhere. The Technomancer is a failure because it does not carve out it’s niche; it does not justify it’s existence when it’s so easy to boot up Mass Effect, or Witcher 3, or Deus Ex, or… Read more »
diamond
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diamond
I disagree, I think Technomancer DOES “carve out it’s own niche” and most definition does “justify it’s own existence”(can’t say the same for BF1), just because those other games you mentioned does not mean other games that don’t have as big of a budget cannot exist, that’s insane troll logic and false equivalency if i’ve ever heard it. I’m personally not a Witcher fan myself, and I fail to see what it really has in common with Technomancer, the Witcher series is open-world fantasy, whereas Technomancer is a hub-based sci-fi RPG, so you’re really reaching if you say they are… Read more »
Charlie Koszulinski
Guest
Charlie Koszulinski
I played Bound by Flame, which is also by spiders, and wasn’t too impressed. Aside from maybe one or two interesting characters, the combat was clunky and repetitive, the story was boring, and the whole game came off as a Dark Souls wannabe. Looking at Technomancer (awesome name, btw) it just looks like more of the same clunky combat, more boring story, and the character and creature design is even worse than that of Bound by Flame (I liked the monsters in that game). So all in all, Spiders are a very underwhelming developer that is probably satisfied with making… Read more »
diamond
Guest
diamond

I didn’t like Bound By Flame either, but I did like Mars War Logs, and Technomancer felt like an improved version of that game.

I found the combat and story enjoyable and liked the designs and aesthetic of the game. I think Spiders actually are trying to push the envelope, cause you don’t really see that many sci-fi RPGs.

Charlie Koszulinski
Guest
Charlie Koszulinski

Maybe you’re right. I never played Mars War Logs, but it didn’t really appeal to me through trailers and gameplay. Bound by Flame left such a bad taste in my mouth, though, I dunno if I could bring myself to play Technomancer.

And maybe they are trying, it just comes off as them going through the motions. I guess it’s just me, but I haven’t found that hook yet.

BornFlunky
Guest
BornFlunky
“Hello Games’ No Man’s Sky was undoubtedly controversial – controversial enough that many were upset to see it missing from my rundown of the year’s worst games – but the product itself is the embodiment of lackluster.” Like, I get that, but then I remember Jim describing Mighty No. 9’s reception in The Mighty Has Fallen as “the game itself has been judged by fan and critic alike as basically medicore at best — a rare consensus…” And Mighty No. 9 made the Worst list. I can understand if that’s largely attributed to MN9’s negative impact on the general opinion… Read more »
diamond
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diamond

But Jim himself absolutely hated Mighty No 9, so much so that he had to ask Laura to review it for him.

I’m with Angry Joe on NMS, I think it was just as bad if not worse then the Colonial Marines debacle(I can honestly say i’d much rather play through that game again then go within a 100 foot radius of NMS)

BornFlunky
Guest
BornFlunky

Also true. I think it’s fair to say that Jim responds to bog-standard open world survival crafting with comparable (and certainly understandable) vitriol, if only going off of the “tips for Early Access” Jimquisition.

I dunno. Just irked me, slightly, I suppose. Not really mad about it, just figured it was worth adding my own two cents on the matter.

MJC
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MJC

“I can understand if that’s largely attributed to MN9’s negative impact on the general opinion of crowdfunded products.”

It is. Jim explained this immediately after announcing MN9. Maybe you should rewatch the video.

BornFlunky
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BornFlunky

I did watch the video, and saw that part. Hence why I brought it up, to set up my response to the notion.

Jack Trevor
Guest
Jack Trevor
The main difference is NMS actually had competent people working on the game. For as much blabbering as they did pre-release, at no point did a member of staff actively insult the community because they didn’t understand why people liked NMS in the first place. Nor does it look like they blew their budget on side projects and frivolous stuff unrelated to game development. The only thing you can really hold against Hello Games is how vague they were on everything. Mighty No 9 is way worst because we knew what the game was supposed to be and they fucked… Read more »
George
Guest
George
Well, from what I have read of Jim’s work on the NMS matter, I’ve come to believe that he thought there were some small redeeming qualities to NMS. That in NMS when your doing nothing or the game is functioning as a walking simulator it worked best. But that’s just my interpretation of his various video essays and writing on the matter. Also, I would say that the development/ marketing of MN9 had a much worse impact on games as an artistic medium. Simply because on a pure emotional level, if not a technical one, the game was so offensive.… Read more »
LatePocketwatch
Guest
LatePocketwatch
In regards to comparing No Man’s Sky to Colonial Marines, while with all things PR it’s subjective to each part of the public, I walk away with the impression that Colonial Marines was more malice than incompetence advertising wise. And I think a large part of that is that Colonial Marines was less ambitious and an existing property. By this I mean that while procedural generation is an established technique I was convinced that they were attempting to push it into new areas. Hello Games knew Spore, Minecraft, and Space Engine existed and I think were inspired by them to… Read more »
BornFlunky
Guest
BornFlunky
Ultimately, I just don’t see a difference in what we were shown about either game leading up to release, at least not on a technical level. As far as I’m concerned, they can both be boiled down to “potential consumers were shown unrepresentative footage, were told non-existent features would exist, and they were not appropriately, legally reprimanded for their demonstrably false advertising.” On that level, I believe the two to be identical. I believe the cynicism and malice on the part of Colonial Marines was (at least almost) entirely on Randy Pitchford’s shoulders. There was no cynicism involved in the… Read more »
diamond
Guest
diamond

I think No Man’s Sky’s advertising was VERY malicious(The fact that the screenshots and videos on Steam are still not at all like the final product is proof of that)

Colonial Marines did get better with a patch which improved the A.I., and a number of people did praise the single-player DLC, with some saying it was better then the main game.

CaitSeith
Guest
CaitSeith

“The fact that the screenshots and videos on Steam are still not at all like the final product is proof of that”

So did Colonial Marines. Jim pointed out that several times that Steam had the demo’s screenshots.

“Colonial Marines did get better”.

And NMS seems to be trying to follow that route with their own patches and adding features. It certainly seems to be following Colonial Marines footsteps closer than Jim thinks (for whatever that’s worth).

Surf Orich
Guest
Surf Orich
I knew exactly what No Man’s Sky was going to be when it was first announced way back in 2013. They said “procedural generation” and “trillions of planets” and my first thought was “ok, so you’re going to go around a trillion barren planets that all look the same.” That’s what procedural generation is; we’ve already been through this before. Look at things like the SLIGE map generator for Doom; this crap been around forever. Everyone should have caught on by now. The fact that Hello Games didn’t talk about the gameplay with any specificity should have tipped people off… Read more »
diamond
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diamond

Me too, I got downvoted on Reddit by butthurt NMS fanboys for saying that I knew as soon as that game was announced that there was no way in hell it could possibly live up to the trailer.

MJC
Guest
MJC

How can you not be aware of all the promises they made? It’s been covered several times by several people. There’s multiple videos and articles on this very website about it, just look them up and you can find the evidence of the promises made and broken.

Jack Trevor
Guest
Jack Trevor

I recall saying it was a survival game on one of the Jimquistions about NMS after hearing Giant Bomb say what it was at a preview event.

And nobody believed me.

James Rochester
Guest
James Rochester
Procedural generation will eventually get there (albeit probably later than sooner) and the No Man’s Sky devs fed those expectations by misleading everyone about what their algorithms were capable of. That E3 2015 presentation was pretty shameless, and that was the point that the hype got really out of hand I think. And honestly I feel like I’ve seen more smug told-you-so’s about No Man’s Sky than I have people who genuinely expected it to be revolutionary. It doesn’t even make sense to have assumed that No Man’s Sky’s procedural generation would only be as good as previous games. This… Read more »
Terriosaurus Hex
Guest
Terriosaurus Hex
I’m with you dude. The amount of seething hatred the game seems to have drawn from people makes me a little worried for a lot of people’s sanity. It’s like they need to believe they were the victim of a scam, without ever being experienced in what a scam actually is. I hate the word, but “entitled” keeps popping into mind. Why do people keep shooting hype down, yet fall for it anyway and get buthurt and blame everybody but themselves while not learning a single thing? It’s almost like people want to look more cynical than they are. Cynicism?… Read more »
CaitSeith
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CaitSeith

And giving it a 5/10 review score was worth of a DDoS attack on The Jimquisition site… I just want to grab those fanboys and slap them on the face; but Hello Games already beat me to it.

Terriosaurus Hex
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Terriosaurus Hex

This list is soooo last year

Benj
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Benj

Current year argument. Your point is invalid.

Terriosaurus Hex
Guest
Terriosaurus Hex

I am a lesbian time traveller. Point remains valid.

Benj
Guest
Benj

You should have put Dishonored 2 on her just so you’ve got one of Laura and one of Gavin’s top 10 games of the year in your mediocre list.

I want CONFLICT!

Olyphantastic
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Olyphantastic

Didn’t he give Dishonred 2 a 5 or something like that? Isn’t that the definition of mediocre?

trn
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trn

I hope you had an ok Christmas, thanks for last year, I guess. Here’s hoping 2017 isn’t too bad.

mrhair
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mrhair

Regarding Layers of Fear, I said in the review thread that “No doubt this is fair, but I have an idea that I’ll enjoy it for all that.” I can now say, that you were right and I was wrong. What a relentlessly tedious experience that was. “Dolls are scare, right? Here’s a doll! Please be scared!”

Lord Dracula
Guest
Lord Dracula

The moment they used an Ouija board I quit.

Jim Sterling
Guest

Sorry you went through the horrible tedium too.

I can’t believe that game got DLC.

09philj
Guest
09philj

Given a choice, would you rather play Five Nights at Freddy’s or Layers of Fear?

Artemiy
Guest
Artemiy

Given that Jim actually gave some mild praise for FNAF (even if he doesn’t “get it”)…

CaitSeith
Guest
CaitSeith

Ok, what horror trope did they forget to put in the original game that now has been added to the DLC? Bad acting voices?

Artemiy
Guest
Artemiy

Killer animatronics.

Artemiy
Guest
Artemiy

At least it was fun to watch Markiplier play it…

Stormbringer
Guest

I’ve noticed multiple sources praise this one. It’s on some best of lists too, from people who bill themselves as more or less highbrow critics.

7_13
Guest
7_13

I am totally ok with that list.
When I looked up this year’s releases list I was amazed by what games didn’t even get a mention here (or anywhere else I would’ve noticed). Like FarCry Primal a.s.o.

Terriosaurus Hex
Guest
Terriosaurus Hex

You obviously didn’t read the review or listen to the last podquisition it would seem.

7_13
Guest
7_13

With “here” I meant that list up there.
But thanks for the reminder, i actually have to catch up on the podcasts.

Mitch Pelham
Guest
Mitch Pelham

Jim really liked Far Cry Primal if memory serves.

7_13
Guest
7_13

ah ok. that would explain it’s missing on the mediocre list 🙂

Fallen Prime
Guest
Fallen Prime

I don’t even think I was aware of two or three of these games, and excepting No Man’s Sky, I definitely forgot the others ever happened.

So yeah. Fitting list.

XionEternum
Guest
XionEternum

Meh…

Dave Dogge
Guest
Dave Dogge

Like this comment if you emailed Sony UK for your money back for No Man’s Sky digital download after playing it less than 5 hours and they just replied 4/5 days later telling you to piss off.

ShinAkuma
Guest
ShinAkuma

I tried Mirrors Edge Catalyst. The cinematic parts ran at 7 fps and in-engine around 30 fps… on a GTX 1070… Got a refund and never touched that game again. . Turns out this problem was common on the PC port. If the developers aren’t giving two shits about their game running even decent on a PC then why should I even give two shits about their game? What an immense piece of shit

diamond
Guest
diamond

I thought the game was pretty good myself, though I played it on Xbox One.

Zephir
Guest
Zephir

It’s incredible how quickly I forgot The Tomorrow Children despite having its logo in front of my face everytime I turn on my PS4…I forgot that almost as quickly as Lost Reavers on Wii U…

Sperium3000
Guest
Sperium3000

UGH! GROSSLY INADEQUATE FOR THE TASK AT HAND!

Fistfullofjam
Guest
Fistfullofjam

Hang on, what’s No Man’s Sky? never heard of it

nikolas orava
Guest
nikolas orava

it’s any other survival game BUT IN SPACE

Fistfullofjam
Guest
Fistfullofjam

>Not getting the joke

JackDeth
Guest
JackDeth

No joke to get.

Turi
Guest
Turi

No! Do not tell. This is a precious person, a gemstone. Do not smash this beautiful oblivion just to let the ugly light in. Ignorance can be bliss and in this case it is. I also do not know how someone could have missed it and this is a once in a lifetime chance to study it.

Sned
Guest
Sned

Super Mario Run isn’t an endless runner: it’s an auto runner, but the levels end.

SilentPony
Guest
SilentPony

Is that a distinction without a difference?

Sam Lindberg
Guest
Sam Lindberg

No one cares.

Vohaul86
Guest
Vohaul86

Not worth a video of its own?

Viking Mana
Guest
Viking Mana

No point making such a mediocre video.

All jokes aside – It’s hard to imagine how this would even work as a video? I don’t know how Jim would really put his usual energy into explaining how a bunch of games are so dull that they struggle to justify their own existence.

Fallen Prime
Guest
Fallen Prime

Last year’s was also an article.

SirNinja
Guest
SirNinja

These are games that inspire apathy more than anything. It’s quite fitting that they’re “celebrated” with only an article.

Clavus
Guest
Clavus

I enjoyed Mirror’s Edge Catalyst quite a bit though. It’s not particularly outstanding, but once I got into the flow of things there was plenty to enjoy in simply exploring paths, fetching collectables or doing races. Beautiful world design too.

Viking Mana
Guest
Viking Mana
Well, that is only if you’re the kind of person who enjoys doing those kinds of tasks. I, for one, got twice the amount of hours out of Far Cry 4 than all my friends did, because I went about collecting the 400+ collectibles. If you’re not into that though, it’s quite a vapid experience that could be done in two afternoons. Take a game like Skyrim – If you ever get tired of running through Draugr dungeons, there’s very little there. Or an even bigger example – World of Warcraft, a game that I’ve played on/off for more than… Read more »
diamond
Guest
diamond

Same here, I think Far Cry 4 was so much better then the godawful Far Cry Primal, which for me was the very definition of creatively bankrupt. It felt like that game was originally intended to be an expansion ala Blood Dragon, but got stretched out into a full-priced game at the last minute(just like Saints Row 4)because of Ubisoft’s greed. TotalBiscuit was 100% right about that game.

backtoklondike
Guest
backtoklondike

ME: Catalyst was the only game from EA that I’ve been interested since Mass effect 3. And when I played it it felt like I was playing an Ubisoft game and what I mean is that it’s presented so lackluster that you could hate it but it has so many good things that instead you feel disappointed instead.
I (and many others) thought that Mirrors Edge would be perfect for open world and what we get is this. And the worse part is that might be the last Mirrors edge we might get.

diamond
Guest
diamond

I thought the open-world was pretty good.

Watchmedance
Guest
Watchmedance

Wait, so Layers of Fear has no threats in it? Why the fuck is it so highly praised?

I saw the header image and thought Mad Max was on this list. Now I’m wondering if it came out this year. Despite playing it, I can’t remember. It was that mediocre that it made that little of an impression on me.

Andrew Barloq
Guest
Andrew Barloq

It was 2015, I remember it came out the same day as The Phantom Pain.

Watchmedance
Guest
Watchmedance

That’s right… Wow. It’s been a while.

Johan Kristian Milde
Guest
Johan Kristian Milde

Layers of Fear is a quite decent walking simulator, but it certainly is a walking simulator. The haunted house ride comparison is quite fitting for it. The game would probably even have been better without the handful of puzzles thrown in to be gamey.

CaitSeith
Guest
CaitSeith

Probably they never played a horror game before.

EuanG
Guest
EuanG

Honestly, Mirrors Edge Catalyst is worse than mediocre: it is an open world platformer where it’s impossible to platform in a broken world. Not to mention the “unlockable moves” that restrict basic moves for no positive reason.

Travis Boswell
Guest

Once I realized that the “open world” was actually just three large chunks separated by linear singular paths I was just confused. Why make an open world game if it’s designed so poorly you just want to fast-travel everywhere?

diamond
Guest
diamond

I had fun with it myself.

Landusk79
Guest
Landusk79

MEDIOCRE INDEED!!

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