Justin, Joseph, and I put our list of the worst of 2013 in film and game. Drop us a line to let us know what you think and what we missed.
The Lone Ranger
Johnny Depp reportedly made this film a requirement in order to secure his services for future appearances as Captain Jack Sparrow. You have to wonder what part of a big budget film based on characters that have not been relevant for over 60 years was a good idea for today’s audiences.
With so much talent behind it and an overabundance of promotion this film was little more than a series of sketches with far more misses than hits in the joke department. The first film is such a classic and this one sadly could be at the franchise killer.
5. The Lone Ranger:
This film was a fail from its inception. Indeed, there has been a revival of westerns as of late, but the audience of the original Lone Ranger largely does not go to blockbusters anymore for obvious reasons. Anyone else had to be sold on a generic western with Johnny Depp as a native American… Right.
4. Battlefield 4 Launch:
Not a bad game at all, but its launch is a prime example of an unsettling and growing trend in gaming: launching a game before it’s finished. Yes, we have always had to deal with patches in the past two decades, even day one patches are not a recent occurrence.
Yet, when you buy a product you expect it to work on a basic level, patches are for tweaks, not fixing major functionality. There are some awesome ideas in Battlefield 4, but it’s unfortunately mired by network coding issues that still aren’t fixed to this day.
3. The War Z:
It tried hard to be the smash mod hit, Day Z, but failed miserably. It launched with horrid bugs and lackluster gameplay. To make matters worse, the development company was found to refuse refunds, and even banned players who asked for them.
Couple this with vitriolic and controversial statements from some of the development team, this game ended up being taken off the Steam store page. It has since been “re-launched” under a new name: Infestation: Survival Stories.
2. After Earth:
M. Night Shyamalan’s newest original science fiction film failed to break the steady trend of awful movies from this once amazing director. The idea was solid, but the execution left way too much to be desired. A long boring plot and bad CGI creatures ruined the potential of this movie.
1. Aliens: Colonial Marines:
While it might not be the worst game of the year, it is certainly the most disappointing. A game which looked amazing in the years leading up to its release and being “worked on” by a great developer like Gearbox Software had me plenty excited, even enough to put it at the top of my list for upcoming games. Then about a week before release it was dropped that Gearbox really didn’t do much work on it.
In fact, it was worked on by three other developers. Huh? Then it came out that the final product really only had about nine months of work into it. Seven years of development and we got a product with only nine months of work put into it? It shows too.
The list of problems is long: horrendous Alien AI, bad shooting mechanics, game breaking bugs, bad lighting and visuals, a lack of “survival horror” and a large amount of “Call of Duty” like atmosphere. It featured a boring and nonsensical plot, which even the greatness of Michael Biehn could not save. It just goes to show that in order to have a good game people actually have to work on it. Years of restarts and hands off to other developers ruined what could have been game of the year.
While “Twilight” was a massive hit on screen, the thinking in Hollywood that if it is from the same author it is sure to be a hit. sadly the film is so bland and dull it is a chore to sit through. Looking at the tepid box office it is clear most people chose not to suffer through this mess.
Mortal Instruments: City of Bones
Yet again another teen book series that the powers that be were convinced would drive fans to the cinemas in droves. Unlike “Twilight” and “The Hunger Games”, audiences were not impressed with everything from the casting to the look of the film and stayed far away from this one.
How could a film with Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges based on a graphic novel that has influences of “Ghostbusters” and “M.I.B.” thrown in as dead cops battle against an army of evil to save us all fail? Simple, have a generic plot with action scenes that we have seen many times before and throw it in the middle of a packed summer movie season and watch it vanish.
What more needs to be said about this mess of an ego run amuck? Will Smith used his clout to get his son to star with him in what was to be a major action film. Well M. Night Shyamalan produced yet another dull mess that could not draw big audiences even with Will Smith and crashed bigger than the ship the film’s story centers on.
Grown Ups 2
While it made money. Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chrick Rock, and David Spade basically hung out and took their paychecks while going through the motions in this very unfunny and unnecessary sequel that does not take advantage of the talents that were contained within.
Aliens: Colonial Marines
The final game looked nothing like the game we had seen at the previous two E3 Expos as well as at PAX, Comic Con, and numerous press releases. The bait and switch way that graphics that were far superior to what the game actually contained were displayed in trailers for the game leading up to launch and the questionable tactics Gearbox used to farm out the game had fans steaming mad over what they had been promised would be the Alien game that had waited for.
When your game launches and many players cannot connect to the server to play you may have an issue. When this and other problems remain weeks later you have serious trouble. E.A. offered a free game to all those who purchased the game but that did little to quell the issues with the game and appease fans.
E.A. once again released a game that was so filled with bugs, crashes; it destroyed the potential of the game. The company reportedly pulled the developer Dice off the pending Star Wars game and other projects to fix the issues with the game, but for many it was not enough as a Class Action lawsuit has reportedly been filed by frustrated gamers who have had enough with the trend of paying full price for games that are not finished and have not been given the fixes and support they believe is appropriate.
It is a shame as there are some great ideas in the game but in their rush to beat Call of Duty: Ghosts to the market, they left stability and functionality on the back burner.
Garth von Kallenbach Skewed and Reviewed